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Zetsaz

A musician's therapist (The $300 Z)

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Spent a bit of time this weekend cleaning up some poor work I'd done on the seat rails. I was working in poor light and pretty tired when I first "finished" them and didn't clean them properly and couldn't see some pieces of the welds. Wire wheeled a lot of spots where some surface rust had devolped in the shape of my finger prints and over welds. I spent a long time cleaning them, then I sprayed them with etching primer to seal. The welds are still not great considering I rarely weld anything, but a bit of grinding to clean up the worst offenders for bad looking welds and some test hits with a mallet to make sure they're holding strong gives me comfort they'll at least be functional for now and if they really bother me down the road it's always possible to redo.

 

Whatever seam sealer was used over the redone floors was either not very good, or the seems weren't cleaned as well as they should have been before it was applied. I wire wheeled some seam sealer off and sprayed those areas with heavy surface rust as well. Still not sure how I want to seal them.

 

Will post some pics soon. Currently debating if I want to bother with turbo stuff, or just put a 2.5" exhaust to the stock exhaust manifold and focus on everything but power. For the time being the next step will be installing the fuel hardlines and getting the tank in.

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Edited by Zetsaz

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2 hours ago, jpndave said:

Nice work Omar. I say drive it! More power later.

Thanks! Added pics. They're at slightly below stock height, but a similar angle front to rear.

 

Driver side trans tunnel looks more banged up than in person due to lighting I think. It was bashed in slightly for whatever racing seat the last owner had intended to use. Maybe when I'm swapping to 5 speed I'll even it out slightly, but I'm not terribly concerned since it'll be covered eventually unless space underneath becomes an issue down the road. 

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Progress updates: got the fuel pump assembled and installed in the tank. The inside is so clean that I've opted not to bother with a coating since the last attempt failed spectacularly and I'm more concerned about the tank or pump gunking up if it's poorly done. Will probably still do a coat of POR15 down the road just to clean it up and protect it from more corrosion on the outside from small rocks and other damage. 

 

$$$ spending updates: I bought some parts! Not fun parts though, just stuff I've really needed to actually get it going. I've been overthinking the whole thing and the scope creep was getting overwhelming considering my current mental state. Especially since having my grandma pass away, I've been motivated to work as a distraction, but anything involving power was becoming increasingly expensive and a headache to think about preventative measures to avoid breaking things. 

 

I have the most important engine specific parts to go turbo for whenever I want, but for now I've committed to staying NA and not bothering with power upgrades or engine work of any kind. Since I don't have the option of just working overtime to make more, I've decided to just get the thing moving in a way that won't risk breaking anything so I can enjoy it sooner and without the risk of it being out of commission for another long while if I need to upgrade  expensive parts that might break. Once it's running and is a comfortable place car to drive, I'll be slowly working from the back forward, starting with CV axles. 

 

 

More updates to come as soon as my parts arrive

Edited by Zetsaz

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Posted (edited)

Some progress today. 

Now have more parts ready to go including header/exhaust. Before I could get to work, I had to remove a broken stud in the head. Spent a fair amount of time degreasing what I could and scraping off as much of the old gaskets from the manifolds and thermostat housing as I could.
 

First I used an extractor... and then it promptly broke off in the stud. Took a lot tries to get it to come out, but enough heat cycles from welding and I think the metal annealed and was finally sticking after I turned up the heat. strangely the extractor came out first and I had to reweld the stud and do the same thing again. 

 


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Once that was done I started test fitting things so I can start wiring soon. Had no place for a battery. For the cost of what the past owner was using I decided it'd be more cost effective to use the stainless zcardepot tray that I had and the OEM Batter tie down sitting on my shelves since it'll make it easy to remove the tray and clean occasionally to avoid rust. I drilled and tapped holes in place. Not trusting that the tapping would hold on such thin metal, I also put some nuts on the opposite side of the bolts just to ease the amount of stress on the couple threads actually present in the sheet metal.

 

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Engine is currently starting to come together. Purchasing a battery this afternoon and probably using regular line clamps for the fuel hardlines until my cousin comes up with a 3D printed solution to be able to clamp down feed, return, and the 3/16" brake line. 

 

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Edited by Zetsaz

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Not against it, just don't want to make any more holes underneath than I already have on the frame rail. I can have two going in opposite directions for the feed and return off one bolt, but I don't want to add another set of holes for the brake line. 

 

Tempted to just run it returnless for now and dead head at the fuel rail for simplicity since I have a built in regulator on the retrofit pump and don't need boost reference right now.

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Posted (edited)

Ideas were percolating last night...

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A lot of people upgrading to standalone always put their ecu on the passenger side. I always wondered about that, but remembered they mostly have 240s. I decided to make a mount to adapt the megasquirt into the stock location to keep my wiring close to the original. Someday in the distant future I might rewire, but my chassis and dash harness and all relays are in great shape and proven working so I'm leaving things close to original where I can. 

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The gauge metal I used wasn't stiff enough to have really long mounting tabs that I felt comfortable with, so I made it the same dimensions as the factory ecu. I carefull opened up the mounting holes on the MS box and tapped them M6x1.0 so I could use the same bolts pretty much the whole rest of the car is held together with. Will probably get the shortest M6 bolts I can find soon, so they're not sticking up too far. The MS3X is noticeably taller than the factory ecu, so I'll be using some rubber isolators between the mount and the brackets in the footwell which will pull double duty as vibration isolation like the original rubber screw grommets on the MS mounting tabs were for.

 

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Edited by Zetsaz

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On 3/9/2020 at 5:50 PM, Zetsaz said:

Not against it, just don't want to make any more holes underneath than I already have on the frame rail. I can have two going in opposite directions for the feed and return off one bolt, but I don't want to add another set of holes for the brake line. 

 

Tempted to just run it returnless for now and dead head at the fuel rail for simplicity since I have a built in regulator on the retrofit pump and don't need boost reference right now.

 

I don't know if you saw how I did it, but I used one of the holes and mounted two clamps on it, leaving the second existing hole open for the brake line! It was easier for me than 3D printing but if your cousin knows his stuff than the opposite may be true for you. Plus the cool points of 3D printing your own parts! ha.

 

That is looking awesome! I need to upgrade my ECU for the RB eventually. One day! Very clean mount that you've made though.

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JD and I both have 3d printers. I've done a few small projects that I have drawn and am bringing in a spool of carbon reinforced filament soon. If your cousin falls through one of us should be able to print something up.

 

The last parts were for a rifle but I'm certain car parts are just a matter of time. 

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I've actually already seen a few different good examples of hose retainers from 3d printing on hybridZ. They  shouldn't be to hard replicate for any size hose,  tube or loom, just a little design time,  some tweaks for diameters and then push print.

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Well... all schools in Washington are closed starting this Tuesday through April 24th. 

 

This is pretty unprecedented. Based on current info, I don't see it affecting my paycheck, but I will have a lot more time on my hands regardless. The car may be moving sooner rather than later. 

 

I've found the chassis harness. Was sitting in a plastic bin covered up by my roommate's stuff he'd put in the storage room. Considering the amount of time I'll be home, at a bare minimum from this Tuesday through next Sunday, or more depending on what kind of work the district will require from us, I've ordered a lot of items I need including jumpers and resistors for megasquirt, Eastwood internal frame coating, more 3M undercoating, and other small misc things.

 

On the to-do list for this week while I wait for things to spray the interior with Lizard Skin are:

-Weld rear valence holes and small puncture

-Possibly cut/drill/weld for 240z tail lights

-Drop rear suspension to more easily bend fuel lines

-Fix more poorly applied seam sealer on floors

-Wire wheel, clean, and tape interior to be ready to spray interior

 

Once the interior is sprayed with lizard skin I'll be able to properly start the wiring process without worrying about redoing it all. If I have any leftover I'll also wire wheel and spray the fuel tank area. At a minimum I'll be wire wheeling that area and spraying it with 3M undercoating.

 

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That's the spirit! I also plan on taking as much time as I can during this whole CV shutdown to work on my Z, that makes me pretty excited for sure ha. I never seam seaed my car after getting it blasted. I probably should but I also am not super worried about it as it will mostly be a track only car. Probably better do it anyway! 

Do you think you'll be able to finish it after these things?

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Been slightly unmotivated with how things are developing, but I've chunked away at a couple things. 

 

Done so far:

-Welded large bumper shock holes (still debating if I want to weld the inner ones... I'm getting better, but they're dimple died and will be barely visible under the bumper)

-Cut out and welded a small patch where there was a puncture on the valence.

 

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So difficult to get them even with the slight curvature of the valence on top of having overlapping metal on the outer holes where the bumper shocks went through. Will probably even out in the paint process down the road, but I might try to grind things a bit more even to use the lease amount of body filler possible. It's also amazing just how thick paint gets. you can see the uneven edges on the puncture repair just from grinding through the respray and original paint. There's also some slight pitting along seams, which goes to show that even the most "rust free" examples like this one have had issues. 

 

 

Next debate is whether or not I use the first year 240z lights (which will require a bit more cutting/welding) or stick with the 280z lights. Have always preferred the early style, but the later ones grew on me and surprisingly, a lot of friends are voting for the latter.

 

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Keep it up man! For myself, I don;t know if I would go through all that work. I don't really see why people think the 240's are so much better. The styling is obliviously different but neither seems better or worse to me. Maybe I'm just missing something ha.

 

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Have been sidetracked trying to finally reaplce the input shaft and countershaft bearings in my truck. Finally managed to find the right front bearing (parts stores don't seem to carry the front counter bearing for the 71c transmissions so I had to pony up for OEM.

 

Waiting on the right shims to arrive then I'll be able to move forward on the Datsun again.

 

In the meantime, I ordered a Leash Electronics relay board per the suggestion of @seattlejester and I'll be doing some wiring prep work/planning while I wait for some rain to go away and a few days of warmth to properly apply the lizard skin and Eastwood internal frame coating. (side note: I was fully expecting more lenth on the tube that came with the frame coating. a bit disappointed, but I'll have to make due)

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