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Swiss two-become-one 240Z Ground up restauration / JDM mods

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Hey guys. some of you might know me from a lot of other Forums. I'm from switzerland and own a few (over here) rare cars like a JDM EK9 i imported a few years ago and love to drive.
However 4 years or so ago i decided to get something classic and after a while i found myself in the middle of a huge Project.

you can read a full build thread from the history till now with a ton of pictures and specs including a lot of rare parts here:
http://japanesenostalgiccar.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=11769

 

But for all that don't want to read through 29 pages of a build i decided to make a short version here and will update it like the other build threads in future:
1) Bought a car without carbs and a few dents and stuff like this in 2010:
P1020030.JPG

 

2) had it stripped down to bare shell and put it into a rotisserie in spring 2011:
p1030881-kopie.jpg

 

3) figured out the chassis was shit due to a lot of bad repair attempts but then got told about a cheap Z near me which was for sale so i checked it and bought it for 300 Bucks the next day.
was also in bad shape due to standing in the snow without a sunroof fitted, but was so cheap and at least it was all original and not too much fucked up. i had to have it...
P1080028-Kopie.jpg

 

4) a few months ago i had the second car stripped to bare shell as well and put it on a rolling jig and sent it to the bodyshop for a ground up restauration which includes a lot of metal fabrication:
P1130548.jpg

 

5) this is the current state at the bodyshop. will stay a few more months there but will keep you updated:
P1130657-Kopie.jpg

 

I have also done a lot of things like reworking all the subframe parts and had them powdercoated and bought a lot of stuff. some pretty rare things like
- Bride histrix seats
- OEM NOS Framerails
- New OEM Roof without sunroof
- Kakimoto valve cover
- hayashi racing drum brakes
- Watanabe Falcon steering wheel
- Saito Rollcage
- and a ton of parts from Nismo / Kameari / Tomei / Omori / Koyorad / Rocky Auto / Tokico / Kyo-Ei / IPF / Trust / Greddy / Nagisa Motorsports / Autorefine....

Currently ordering all the the OEM Bolts from Nissan (a lot of work to get all the partnumbers,...) and trying to get some information on some rare oldschool Intake manifolds (if someone knows anything about the "Ohtsuka" intake manifold - please let me know!!!)

However still need a lot of parts. if you're interrested in all the details click the link on top. will document the build detailed from the current point on here as well :)

Edited by jdmjunkies.ch

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Jepp, progress is currently a bit slow because i'm still working on a lot of research stuff and the weather is cold and snowy over here (and you know my garage is unheated).
However got some small stuff done again: Ordered a big bunch of OEM Nissan Nuts, Bolts, washers and springs for the rear subframe assembly. Still a few missing they will be delivered delayed.
P1130768-Kopie.jpg

Also finally got a little update from Yves over at MUC. He's currently preparing for exchanging the Genuine frame-rails i brouth him a few weeks ago (See below):

IMG-20150120-WA0000-Kopie.jpg

 

IMG-20150120-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

 

P1080246-Kopie.jpg

Edited by jdmjunkies.ch

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It seems like every post i write starts with a "finally". So this one is no different: Finally some Assembly work started. After many years of taking parts apart and cleaning them, finding replacement and doing research - i started the assembly of the Steering rack-and-pinion system. This is how it started (Note the new workdesk light i installed also :D)
P1130770-Kopie1.jpg

I highly recommand using these Surface cleaning pads (pot cleaners) for removing old dried-out grease, slight s urface rust and dirt. Works brilliantly and is super cheap and easy to get :)
P1130771-Kopie.jpg

Also love my  new multi-purpose grease pump :)
P1130772-Kopie.jpg

It's so much fun cleaning all the little bits like the grease seal seen here:
P1130775-Kopie.jpg

P1130773-Kopie.jpg

Looks like i didn't do a lot but after two hours of cleaning surfaces, degreasing, re-greasing a lot of bits and puzzling it all together i ended up  like this :)  Still need to get a few parts zinc-plated before i can complete the assembly but at least i have something like an almost-finished steering rack :)
P1130776-Kopie.jpg

Then bought a simple spring-scale from an online auction so i can make sure to have all the parts within specifications as mentioned in the service manual. No the most high-tech thing but it was cheap and wil do the work for me ;)
P1130778-Kopie.jpg

Also got a little delivery with some Nissan OEM Fasteners that were on back-order. Now have most of the parts ready for a full subframe re-assembly with all new OEM bolts. still need to get a few replated but most of the parts are ready. this will be fun :)
P1130777-Kopie.jpg

Also got some updates from the bodyshop. He's currently working on the Framerails, battery-tray area and the passenger-side firewall. I'll let the pictures speak. please note that most of the work is not completed yet, so it might look a bit like a hackjob - but you have to wait until it's done :)
IMG-20150127-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150127-WA0003-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150127-WA0013-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150127-WA0012-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150126-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150126-WA0002-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150127-WA0000-Kopie.jpg

That's it for now. hope go get the parts ready for zinc-plating soon because this will give me all t he missing fasteners i need to move forward with the subframe assembly...   Now taking a day off and go to the Zoo :)

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Honestly i would like to show you some assembly progress here but unfortunately im still in need to get all the small bits and fasteners cleaned and zinc-plated before i can continue. Also I have a bunch of parts that need to be powedercoated so i decided to spend time with this task first:
1) On my way home from work i stopped by the garage because i had a good idea during work. I Finally found a solution to remove those rear subframe bolts from the chassis (the ones that bolt to the moustache bar):
DSC_0602-Kopie.jpg

The wheel-torque wrench with a long shaft and a metal-tube extension finally got them out. Thesre are pretty special so no possibility to get those new. I had to get them out for zinc plating. They have a conical shape with both threads on the top- and lower end.
P1130866-Kopie.jpg

2) Before i went home i made sure to pack up all the parts i need at my home-workshop during the next days. because my garage is a few minutes away from home...
P1130865-Kopie.jpg

3) Decided i need some parts zinc-plated from the pedalbox as well and all the bigger bits need a sandblast and powdercoat so i started the dismantling. Before:
P1130867-Kopie.jpg

P1130878-Kopie.jpg

And after:
P1130877-Kopie.jpg

P1130880-Kopie.jpg

Still need to dismantle the steering column and safety-harness mounts and some other parts before sandblasting / Powdercoating and Zinc-plating all the bits. THEN finally i will hopefully be able to move fast forward with assembly of many small things...

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So here we go. Started preparing stuff for getting it zinc-plated / Replated. The company that does the work told me they can only remove slight surface rust and old zinc so i had to remove the thicker rust spots and old paint, grease and rubber:
Started like this: 60 pieces total (Note the Snow in my Garden :D)
P1130881-Kopie.jpg

Gave all the pieces a treatment with paint-stripper. just to make sure everything is gone:
P1130885-Kopie.jpg

After letting it soak for a while and then cleaning it with water. it looked like this - much better already :)
P1130886-Kopie.jpg

Spent another hour or so cleaning all the bits with a dremel and a mini wire-wheel. Much better. Now ill ship it to the zinc-plating company and hope to get the bits back soon :D   
P1130892-Kopie.jpg

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Time for another update:
1) While still waiting for the parts to return from the zinc-plating shop i ordered and got some fasteners and small OEM Bits from nissan for the Pedal box. nothing spectacular:
P1130914-Kopie.jpg

2) Also my Bodyshop guy constantly keeps sending my updates andi hope i can visit him once again next week. Hower his work looks very promising and his fabrikation skills are stunning:
IMG-20150202-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

During work (Area below the battery tray):
IMG-20150211-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

The finished, hand-crafted product. Absolutely great in my opinion!
IMG-20150217-WA0003-Kopie.jpg

Today he started with the floorpans and rocker-panels:
IMG-20150219-WA0003-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150219-WA0004-Kopie.jpg

Current state of the car. Not much original Metal left. but the work is just brilliant!
IMG-20150219-WA0009-Kopie.jpg

3) While waiting for parts and work i decided to disassemble the Steering column. Before:
P1130928-Kopie.jpg

Almost finished. If someone can tell me how the bearings are mounted into the housing and how i can remove them, this would be very helpful. Will get the housings sandblasted and powdercoated and don't think the bearings like to have sand and heat inside. also the service manual, haynes and other books only mention "replace bearings if worn" but not how to... Any advice i'm very thankful for :)
P1130938-Kopie.jpg

Hope the zinc-plating parts will return early next week and another delivery goes to the powdercoating company ;) 

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Thanks to a steel tube, a Hammer and the Torch i somehow managed to remove the steering column bearings which are only press fit. However it seems like i damaged the Plastic spacer and i'm still not sure how to remove the bearing on the lower part of the steering column Jacket.
P1130939-Kopie.jpg

And on we go with the updates from the bodyshop. Yves at MUC is currently replacing the Floorpans, seat mounts, and rocker panels and installing the NOS Framerails:
IMG-20150221-WA0000-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150221-WA0002-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150221-WA0007-Kopie.jpg

Thats it for now. More to come soon.

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Today i have some nice news: Got back my first load of parts from the Zinc plating and yellow-passivating (which makes it look "golden" and also secures it better from corroding:
P1130941-Kopie.jpg

Honestly this was my first attemt ever in doing something like this. so not all parts ended up perfect as i hoped, but however most of them are usable and some of them were for trying anyway only because anything up t 39 kilograms was the same price so i put whatever part i wanted to have replated into the box anyway. Here's a closer look at the colour:
P1130944-Kopie.jpg

So while i was looking at all the nice parts i got a bit motivated and decided to complete at least the fuel cap :) So i started with cleaning the still nice and soft rubber seal and adding a bit of Vasiline (Petroleum lube / Jelly) Just to make it last a bit longer.
P1130945-Kopie.jpg

After done i put it back to the cap
P1130946-Kopie.jpg

And installed all back together. Yay - first part complete :)
P1130947-Kopie.jpg

But not only me was productive today, also Yves over at MUC is working hard at the moment and welded back some hand-crafted rocker panels: Still needs a few touches but it looks brilliant compared to what it looked before :)     
IMG-20150225-WA0000-Kopie.jpg

Here's another view:
IMG-20150225-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

With the zinc-plating delivery today i got a lot of parts back which i was waiting for to complete the steering rack assembly and the Front subframe parts. So Expect to see a lot of these parts assembled soon :)

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Since i got the Zinc plated parts back i'm trying to push the assembly of parts. Just because it's so much fun to finally see the puzzle-pieces come together to bigger pieces :D
Started with the installation of the lately returned Zinc plated bolt and lock-nut:
P1130950-Kopie.jpg

Then felt like it makes sense to clean a lot of small bits before putting it together. I mean wile i'm at it.. Dentist tools...
P1130951-Kopie.jpg

And and old toothbrush came in handy and worked fine:
P1130953-Kopie.jpg

The result. Well i even cleaned them another 30minutes more after this picture:
P1130954-Kopie.jpg

Then started with the installation of the rest of the parts. like the steering boot clamp / Dust ring and the tierod-link stop nut:
P1130957-Kopie.jpg

So next step will be the installation of the NAMS / Nagisa Auto Motor sports (Japan) adjustable Tierod endlinks (now discontinued :D) and the steering rack boots.
P1130959-Kopie.jpg

Takes a lot of time to figure out how all belongs together and to clean all the small bits. but honestly it's so much fun :D   

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So everyday i try to spend at least 30minutes in the basment in my little Home-workshop assembling parts. But honestly progress is allways slower then i was hoping for, because it needs just so much time figuring out all the bolts, nuts and how everything belongs together. But better do it only once, but slow istead of rushing and messing everything up :)
1) Yesterday i got som industrial grade Superglue from the office to glue that rubber-stopper that is mounted on the steering rack Assembly. Before:
P1130962-Kopie.jpg

And after glueing it back (I reused the old rubber piece because it's not available anymore and after a bit of cleaning it looked nice). Should be bulletproof now :)
P1130963-Kopie.jpg

2) Had some sparetime after t hat so i decided to use it and prepare the Seatbelt-mounts for sandblasting and powedercoating. Before:
P1130960-Kopie.jpg

And after. Mounts removed. Note sure about this seatbelts. it's a swedish brand so definitly not Genuine Nissan. Probably installed by nissan switzerland upon import due to different safety regulations here. But they looked like a nice solution so i think i keep them if i don't find any better thing :)
P1130961-Kopie.jpg

3) Today i started with the Front subframe. Started like this:  
P1130967-Kopie.jpg

Then after a few small fitting-works installed the Front Lower control arms (LCA's).
Click here for a great writeup about how to install them! This was very useful!
P1130968-Kopie.jpg

Here we go! Front LCA's temorarly installed. Haven't tightened the nuts yet because i want to be sure everything alignts befor tightening stuff...
P1130969-Kopie.jpg

4) Then installed that rubber-stopper-thingy on the Steering rack:
P1130970-Kopie.jpg

And then couldn't help myself but had to install the steering rack to the front assembly temporarly just to get me the feeling about how it will look soon. Somehow satisfying seeing all these puzzle-parts come together:
P1130971-Kopie.jpg

5) And of course, Yves my bodyshop guy keeps me updated almost daily about progress. But i will visit him and my fairlady again tomorrow so expect some nice fotos :)
Note these are work-in-progress Fotos of the front Firewall / Battery tray area (which is usually rusty from leaked battery-acid). So the final result will look better ;)  IMG-20150302-WA0001-Kopie.jpg

IMG-20150302-WA0002-Kopie.jpg

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Have wanted to visit my Fairlady and Yves at the Bodyshop for a while, but sadly i never really found time. That until last thursday. Just wanted to talk about the "Master plan" regarding the chassis and see the work he did so far. As usual great work from what i can say. But i'll let the pictures talk:
P1130979-Kopie.jpg

P1130977-Kopie.jpg

P1130974-Kopie.jpg

P1130976-Kopie.jpg

P1130973-Kopie.jpg

So Far the front-right Corner almost is done...
- Battery-tray area fixed (battery tray will be sandblasted, primered and welded back in soon)
- New Rocker panels created from sheetmetal and replaced old ones.
- Inner side sills repaired
- Frame rail rebuilt and partially replaced with the NOS one i brought him.
- Complete front inner wheel well repaired
- Front air channel repaired and rebuilt from sheet metal
- Firewall below Battery tray replaced (Work in progress)

Next steps will be replacing the floorpanels with replacement panels i brought him, as well as completing the firewall on the passenger side. Then the work will move to the passenger-backend of the car.

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Currently i'm working in my little-basement-workshop almost daily trying to get all the small details right. So here's an update on all the small things i did lately:
1) Zcarnut over at the JNC Forums pointed out that my Steering rack spacer was mounted the wrong way. After checking a few pictures i could confirm. Why you wonder? Because the drawing in the exploded-view and Manual is wrong. Damnit :P However i've corrected that now:
P1130991-Kopie.jpg

2) Added those washers that are mentioned in the manual as well but did not fit properly and were not installed on both cars originally. But somehow i like the look of these and think it's better to not have the nut directly on the rack so i like this solution and had them reworked to fit my needs :) (Not torqued in the pictures so thats why it looks loose :P)
P1130997-Kopie.jpg

3) Next i installed the Kameari Engine mounts. Before:
P1130993-Kopie.jpg

Specs from the Manual:
P1130995-Kopie.jpg

And done - love how everything comes together slowly :)
P1130996-Kopie.jpg

4) I'm currently preparing a load of parts for powdercoating so i decided while i'm at it i will also put the Diff mount baseplates into this even if i'm not sure yet if i will reuse them or replace them with something like the "technoversion Diff mount kit".  Before:
P1140002-Kopie.jpg

And after:
P1140003-Kopie.jpg

5) And last i felt like my last Steering colum disassembly somehow was a bit of a fail. Lucky me i have two sets of almost everything (the advantage of having to cars to choose parts from :D) So i repeated the whole thing with the Second steering column and this time used proper professional tools (aka the Spanner-extension-bits and a wood hammer, as seen on the Top). Worked way better this time without any damage:
P1140001-Kopie.jpg

6) I wanted to remove the bearings from the Lower part of the colum as well but this item is not ment to be removed i think... There is nothing mentioned in any manual about how to get this thing out.. so i tried on my own..
P1130998-Kopie.jpg

But ended up with a damaged bearing and cover cap. (See right). So i decided before destroying the nice one (left) as well i might get this sandblasted carefully and repained i stead of powdercoated. because powdercoating needs a lot of heat to burn the colour in and this woud destroy the bearing-rubber-seal and by using paint this probably would be possible. Have to check this but so far this is my best solution...
P1140005-Kopie.jpg

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Today i had a super-productive day in my opinion :) Had a day off from work so i thought i'd do as many things as possible. I have some big car related news (not this car) soon, so i want to complete a few things here. More to come.
1) However, the day started like this: Bought a cheap Jigsaw (see below) And went to the garage where Z Number one (the white one) is still standing around. The other one has a bad spare-wheel well so i wanted the bodyguy to weld this one into the other chassis:
P1140007-Kopie.jpg

After 30 Minutes of cutting the well as nice as possible with the new jigsaw, The dremel Tool for hard-to-reach Areas and the Angle grinder it looked like this:
P1140008-Kopie.jpg

Out it is:
P1140010-Kopie.jpg

2) After Dropping off a a few parts for the Anodizing company (parts for the EK9, will post about this soon) I Went to the powedercoating company To dropp of the battery-tray-mount which Yves (the bodyshop guy) gave me, and the Spare-wheel well To sandblast and get it primered so these parts are ready to get welded back in at the bodyshop:
P1140013-Kopie.jpg

3) Also had these set of parts dropped off at the powdercoating company for a sandblast and Powdercoat. (Original doglegs, Steering colum parts, Original steering knuckles, Pedalbox and Pedals, Seatbelt mounts and Differential-belt mounts):
P1140014-Kopie.jpg

Btw: This is how the powdercoating company looks from the inside. they're specialized in huge parts (like crane-pieces and stuff) so it's a seriously big undustrial complex and a automated powdercoating cycle:
DSC_0716-Kopie.jpg

4) And while i was on my parts-delivery tour i Visited my good friend Nadya, who works at an industrial paintshop and delivered the parts from the second steering colum for painting. The reason is powdercoating needs to be burnt-in at high temperatures but because i still have the rubber-seal and the bearing inside i wanted to have it painted without any heat. Also i know Nadya very well and was happy to explain he rin detail what i need. While the Powdercoating company works on a totally unpersonal way and i'ts hard to get special wishes done right.  
P1140012-Kopie.jpg

Hope to complete a lot of things as soon as these parts return from the various shops :)

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I knew my Parts will be back from the paintshop and powdercoating company soon so i wanted to make sure as much as possible is ready for assembly when the parts are here.
So ever since i read about it on the internet. something i wanted to do is clean and refurbish the steering colum bearings..
Before (everything nasty and filled with old, dirty grease):
P1140029-Kopie.jpg

Here i have one of them pulled apart and cleaned all the balls (30 total) and shells and the securing ring. I have a total of 4 bearings because two from each Steering colum from each car, in case you're wondering.
P1140033-Kopie.jpg

I reworked all four of them because that gave me the opportunity to choose the best two at the end (to the right on this picture), rather than replacing the Bearing balls with some generic bearing balls as some others have done before..:
P1140035-Kopie.jpg

While i was at work in my basement i decided to finally hang my 1/50 limited Starroad picture with the Inoue-san (from starroad) handsign on the wall as a bit of motivation and inspiration:
P1140028-Kopie.jpg

And then my friend Nadya at the Industrial paintshop sent me this photo of my steering colum parts drying and told me i can pick them up on friday again. Seems like i have some work for the weekend :)
IMG-20150318-WA0000-Kopie.jpg
 

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thanks for the Kind words! I actually ordered them at my local Nissan Garage.
Many of the (mostly the Special sized bolds and bits) parts are obsolete with no replacement, but most of the Standard bolts and stuff are replaced with newer partnumbers.
Just check the partnumber here and it will give you the replacement number: http://www.online-parts.co.uk/Nissan

But also my local Nissan Garage was able to tell me the replacement numbers (sometimes they had different numbers). also you might note that Nissan Japan and Europe sometimes have different item availibility so maybe also Nissan USA hase different availibilities on parts i guess...

Thats how i did: I made a list of all the bolts, washers and nuts from one certain assembly (lets say the front subframe), checked every single part number in the link above for a replacement number and sent the list (including original and replacement number) to a number of Nissan garages. Few sent me Feedback, some None at all so i Chose the one who was most willling to help me and they were forwarding it to the Nissan parts HQ in Rotterdam (NL) to check availibility and Prices. after i got the info i just ordered all the available parts and got them a few days later.

all the not available parts i will / did zinc-replate or replace with similiar specified bolts from the Hardware store.

 

hope this helps. good luck with the bolt-hunting :)
 

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Last few evenings i've been working on the assembly of the steering column. Started with the delivery of the freshly sandblasted and painted housing parts:
P1140043-Kopie.jpg

The steering colum mount still had the old glue inside so i tried a few methods to clean it but figured out the "solvent cleaner" (which is actually an industrial grade label-sticker remover) works brillant compared to the dremel-and-wire-wheel method :P
P1140046-Kopie.jpg

this wass the result after wiping it a few times. see before picture above:
P1140047-Kopie.jpg

Next was glueing the old and cleaned rubber insulators back in. they where still quite nice and soft and no new ones available so i decided to reuse them:
P1140060-Kopie.jpg

Put the plastic piece from the steering lock and the two bearings into the fridge to get them minimized a bit and at the same time put the housing on my radiator to warm and expand it slightly for a few hours:
P1140048-Kopie.jpg

After that it was quite easy to hammer the bearings and the plastic piece back into the housing carefully with a wooden hammer and the professional tool (aka the big wrench nut and expander) :D
P1140049-Kopie.jpg

After cleaning all the small bits and regreasing them i had them back into the housing as well (thanks to the help of my girlfriend, because it's impossible to compress the spring and at the same time install the lock-ring - trust me. i tried for about an hour :P
P1140054-Kopie.jpg

The result:
P1140055-Kopie.jpg

So  here we have the steering colum minus the mounting bracket:
P1140057-Kopie.jpg

but i've installed that shortly thereafter :D thats it for today. Have a last small bit of work tomorrow and hopefully more coming soon :)
P1140062-Kopie.jpg

In case if you've missed it, i bought a new car for replacing my daily Civic which i now drive since 12 years, but ineed something more practical so i have another project now because i'll modify it slightly. just so you're warned :D but uf course the fairlady has priority ;)
Mazda3.png

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