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  • Birthday 12/22/1986

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    Cars, guns, computers, arc welding, high tech welding, metal fabrication, machining.

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  1. It cannot be stressed enough to suggest that you practice on some scrap metal on the bench first. Practice alot, I mean, lay down feet of practice welds before even touching your car. Sheet metal warps extremely easily if you put too much heat into it. Play around with your settings, practice trying to keep the two members aligned flush, practice not warping your panels as you go. Good body welders have enormous amounts of experience and skill, it is not something that you pick up quickly but you could do a pretty OK job if you make sure to take your time, get the fit perfect, and double check everything every step of the way. You will most likely have more issues blowing holes through your weld joint than you will having lack of fusion. I like to use body magnets to help hold panels together. Make liberal use of clamps and bars all around your patch panel to try and keep it flush. Dont try and make it perfect, it wont happen, just try and focus on getting the whole thing to look "good enough" so that you can easily clean it up when you are done. I have seen people use cold air guns to rapidly chill the weld zone between spot welds that sped up the process and minimized warping.
  2. I keep forgetting to take pictures of my progress but the floor pan is fully welded in! It was getting pretty ugly over where I cut out the section to weld in the cross bar support piece. I also spot welded in the floor frame rail, just need to connect it to the engine bay frame rail.
  3. Nice build and gorgeous looking Z, especially exciting considering you are also in CT and also restoring one of these gems. I have alot of body work to do on my 280z still but I would like to know what paint code you used for yours.
  4. So I did some more prep work this weekend, welded in a square tube for the forward seat cross bar, will need to fabricate side skirts for it to connect it to the middle of the floor. Also did some more spot welds along the right side of the floor, I have about 8in of spot welds to finish that side up. Cut out the temporary cross member I had welded in and prepared the floor frame rail with spot weld holes and paint for welding this week. Ended the weekend running 8/3 romex for the hot tub.
  5. I wasnt aware that explorers had IRS ever. I have kept my eyes open for the 90s IRS 8.8 but they seem either extremely rare or expensive. I havent found any anywhere nearby in a long time of searching. I have a co worker who is building an 850hp Z32 who has a contact with a number of open R200s for extremely cheap (around 150$ shipped) and refreshed LSD internals for another 175ish. Seems like it might be the best option for now but I am going to just run the R180 gingerly until it blows up before swapping. As of right now, I have replaced my passenger side floor and am working on frame rails and seat rails. Driver side is on deck. Once that is done I will be cleaning up the engine and getting it mounted. A huge question mark that I have been trying to figure out is how to manage the engine. Either use the factory harness from the donor vehicle and try to work around not having the automatic or figure out another harness solution.
  6. Well I am back at the repairs. I have never spot welded thin sheet metal before. Using some tips from a friend of mine who is a certified body mechanic. He recommended using self drilling sheet metal screws to hold the panels in intimate contact. He also said I over did it with the number of spot welds but I think it came out relatively OK for a first attempt, driver's side will be much nicer after using the passenger side as practice. Items left for Passenger side: finish closing up the rear seam. Weld in the new seat cross rails. Weld in the underfloor mount. Weld in the cutout under the support cross bar. Weld in the firewall patch panel. Oh, and I just ran out of shielding gas.
  7. Welded in a large cross bar per Seattlejester's suggestion (thanks) and finished cutting out the floor and the middle seat rail. Proceeded to cut and grind and clean up metal to prep for welding. Ran myself clean out of grinding and cutting discs so the project will have to wait for a day or two while I wait for a 100pc shipment of grinder tools and a steel wire bell brush to come in. Looks like my floor pans got a little surface rust on them after being stored in a box for nearly 5 years! Having to take a break from the Z gave me some time to move my hot tub into the car port for some much needed relief from the 100+ degree weather up here. On a side note, anyone ever heard of swapping a Volvo IRS rear diff into a Z car? Appearently they had a number of years with Eaton G80 locking diffs that were supposed to be pretty stout (paired behind a 300+ftlbs T6 and their 4.4L ferarri V8s). Wrecked volvo S80s are plentiful in my area, significantly more so than LSD R200s and their donors.
  8. This is the one that I purchased, I believe it was around 140$: https://images.app.goo.gl/iBEyADFAo1Gsuo6m8 Unfortunately, I do not have a picture of it in my Z as I have it completely torn down for full restoration. Here is a picture of it in another vehicle. Definitely a bit larger than the maxi fuse blocks, but I fell it is absolutely worth finding the space for it. I can say that with my car completely coated in dust and welding soot and other grit, the inside of the fuse hub is completely dry and spotless. https://images.app.goo.gl/Lzc6ncMfDwFfrZYL7 It does not use Maxi fuses. Rather, it uses much higher amperage rated MiDi or AMI fuses plus an array of ATC or ATO fuses. Blue Sea Systems builds oceanic equipment so they tend to prefer MiDi fuses which carry much higher amp ratings (30-200) and are bolted down via stainless steel lugs rather than spring clips. You can see that these are many times superior to Maxi fuses and readily available at most auto parts stores for only a couple dollars. The fuse chamber is sealed with an O ring in the lid. it also stores replacement fuses and the tool to pull ATC fuses inside the chamber as well as a tag so you can write which fuse does what.
  9. Your build is an inspiration to us all. I was wondering if you have seen the fuse blocks made by Blue Sea Systems? Reason I mention it is that I had used a fuse block similar to the one you are using and found that the prongs that hold the large blade fuses tend to loosen over time, especially when they get warm. This ended up causing a severe electrical issue and stranding me several times in my 77 280z a number of years back. I ended up replacing my cheap fuse block with their safety hub block seen here: https://www.bluesea.com/products/category/16/Fuse_Blocks Although expensive (for a fuse block), it is much more attractive and about 100x more secure and air tight.
  10. You think so? Definitely not too little heat as I was having a hell of a time keeping it from punching holes through the thin metal. I am using my large welder with large diameter wire so it does build up rather quickly and most of that is single spot welding so it may appear to have a globular appearance, except for the 1/8" frame plates in the 2nd post.
  11. Woo, and I just sold some old car parts that I had laying around to fund this project. Full Steam Ahead Cap'n!
  12. Next up is going to be the bottom of the frame. I am going to replace the sections under the firewall prior to cutting out the entire floor region. Should have it all welded and cut out so I can start fitting my NOS floors by the end of the weekend.
  13. I have the floor cut back to the first cross rail, formed and rebuilt the mating firewall flange behind the fender and have the bottom of the frame (that was warped and rotted) cut out and a 1/8" piece formed to be welded in tomorrow hopefully. Pictures on that progress to come this afternoon. Does anyone have any pointers for replacing the floor panels? Currently, I am thinking I will just cut out the entire frame and floor as I have new frame rails and floor pans to go in but I am somewhat concerned about keeping the chassis straight, albeit, there is almost no weight in the car at this point.
  14. Hey guys. So I am swapping a small block 302 into my 77 280z and have sold the engine to help fund it. I have a bunch of left over parts and I am not sure if they are worth trying to sell; Complete intake manifold, cleaned and refreshed, new hoses, lines, cleaned inside and out with all electronics and linkage still attached. 3spd AT Radiator A/C radiator drive shaft Original distributor 280zx digital distributor original ECU brand new in box ECU Most of the electrical in the car is going to be stripped out, this includes the entire engine bay harness, capacitors, relays, etc.
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