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Thread: 260Z L28et Swap... good purchase?!?

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    Question 260Z L28et Swap... good purchase?!?

    First off, hello there, my name is Brad.

    I am new here... and yes this is another SHOULD I BUY THIS post so any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    I've been searching my local area and nearby states for a Z car (specifically pre 1979... no ZX). I am planning on doing a budget build and not a restoration. I will be going for the classic JDM look (fender mirrors, flairs etc.). I am a performance car enthusiast and currently daily drive a 2011 Subaru STi, however performance is not my end goal. I already have a great performance car so I want something that looks different for cruising and taking to some shows.

    I love the way the classic Z cars look, even stock they are gorgeous. This may upset purists but imperfections donít bother me and this car will be far from perfect for some time. The imperfections are character and show history. That being said I donít want a complete ROT project, as many donít.

    After searching I found what I think is the best deal Iíve seen so far and plan on going to check it out today with CASH in hand but would love to hear some opinions and words of caution from those more experienced than I.

    Here is the ad:
    1974 Datsun 260Z Turbo
    This car is just up the road so itís a lucky find in my opinion.

    Some more information from the guy after talking with him and looking at pictures he sent me.

    - The floor pans are not rusted through, only surface rust.

    - The electrical issue is because he had someone else wire the car and they used the wrong harness. Everything works (lights, turn signals etc) just some of it is mixed up, like the wipers are turned on VIA the defrost button . So nothing major and something I will fix.
    - He checked the wheel wells and strut tower areas and said nothing was rusted through (I will confirm
    this)

    - The car was originally from Texas but spent 2 years in Connecticut, thatís where the little bit of rust came from. It now resides in Columbia, SC.

    I originally set out to find a carbureted setup to eliminate EFI and having to work with ECU/tuning. I currently do that on my STi but it can be tougher than making adjustments to a ye olí carb setup. However he said it runs great and has no issues so I shouldnít have to touch the engine much at the moment. The only issue comes in when I do have to. Maybe someone can shed some light on this part, is it a good setup, easy or hard to work with and so on. I think that is the only thing holding me back at the moment (besides the obvious that I havenít seen it in person yet).

    I know Iím forgetting some small details so I will update if I can think of anything.

    Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by 20STi11; 07-22-2014 at 05:33 AM. Reason: URL

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    Registered User cbuczesk's Avatar
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    The car looks pretty good to me. I expect the wheel arch rust to require some work to properly fix. I don't know anything about the FAST setup. I have an early 260Z with a turbo setup and love it. It looks like a pretty solid little project at a good price.

    Chuck
    East Coast Z Nationals held at the Carlisle Import & Kit Nationals - May 16-18, 2014 Carlisle, PA
    www.carlisleevents.com/events/import
    1969 240Z #390
    1971 Fairlady Z
    1971 240Z parts car
    1972 240Z ITS race car
    1972 240Z turbo
    1974 260Z turbo
    1975 280Z my first car
    1978 620 King Cab

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    Registered User madkaw's Avatar
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    Definitely not your ole carb tune stuff. I guess if it runs good it would make a nice platform to finish up . It's always a bit of a gamble on a performance modded car like that. You have no FSM to fall back on. If you have a strong mechanical background and don't mind chasing wires, you might be alright.
    Since the price seems based on a performance upgraded Z - it would have to run and drive good for that money .
    Steve
    71 240z,bw-5sp 2.4-40 over,balanced,e-88,big valves,ported&polished, stage2,header, triple Mikuni's 40's
    3.90 Subaru STI LSD

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    Quote Originally Posted by cbuczesk View Post
    The car looks pretty good to me. I expect the wheel arch rust to require some work to properly fix. I don't know anything about the FAST setup. I have an early 260Z with a turbo setup and love it. It looks like a pretty solid little project at a good price.

    Chuck
    Thanks Chuck, that makes me feel a bit better about it. Are you EFI or carb with your turbo setup?

    Quote Originally Posted by madkaw View Post
    Definitely not your ole carb tune stuff. I guess if it runs good it would make a nice platform to finish up . It's always a bit of a gamble on a performance modded car like that. You have no FSM to fall back on. If you have a strong mechanical background and don't mind chasing wires, you might be alright.
    Since the price seems based on a performance upgraded Z - it would have to run and drive good for that money .
    Yeah that's what I know :/ Performance cars are true to their original creator, did they skimp or do it right? Always a flip. I figured though since this will be project and not a DD I'm not too worried about it. I don't have to have it to get around, that's the point in buying it. If the engine doesn't work out for me I can always pull it, sell it and drop something else in.

    I should be able to get it figured out though, as and engineer in the automotive (well diesel) industry I should be capable right? haha guess I'll see.

  5. #5
    Registered User cbuczesk's Avatar
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    My 74 uses 1975 EFI and my 72 uses 82 turbo EFI. If you have problems with the FAST you can always go back to the ZX turbo stock EFI.

    Chuck
    East Coast Z Nationals held at the Carlisle Import & Kit Nationals - May 16-18, 2014 Carlisle, PA
    www.carlisleevents.com/events/import
    1969 240Z #390
    1971 Fairlady Z
    1971 240Z parts car
    1972 240Z ITS race car
    1972 240Z turbo
    1974 260Z turbo
    1975 280Z my first car
    1978 620 King Cab

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    Quote Originally Posted by cbuczesk View Post
    My 74 uses 1975 EFI and my 72 uses 82 turbo EFI. If you have problems with the FAST you can always go back to the ZX turbo stock EFI.

    Chuck
    That's a very good point and a great idea that didn't cross my mind, thanks. Is it possible to buy complete wiring harnesses for these Z's? I have a friend who specializes in wire tucking for show cars. I may buy a whole new setup and to give him a ring to have it wrapped up nice in the engine.

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    Registered User madkaw's Avatar
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    I don't know if I would say that about going back to 70's technology.
    FAST is no joke engine management and there is probably a lot of support available on that general systems.
    The FAST system would be worth making work. Any wiring for the chassis for a 73 should be a pretty simple task.
    Steve
    71 240z,bw-5sp 2.4-40 over,balanced,e-88,big valves,ported&polished, stage2,header, triple Mikuni's 40's
    3.90 Subaru STI LSD

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