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dmoralesbello

280Z Restomod Progress

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On 10/4/2018 at 11:11 PM, Jaymanbikes said:

Hey Dave, good to see you are still making cool changes to your Z.  I totally agree on the Steering wheel.  I thought about getting one for my 280 but ended up doing a 240 wheel which I really like.  Can you share more info on your fire extinguisher set-up?  Thanks!

Nice to touch base with you once again buddy! The cool thing about the extinguisher is the base to which it attaches. I wasn't about to drill holes in the floors and wanted the extinguisher right behind the passenger seat where I could really reach it if necessary. I used a 4" x 12" piece of 3mm black ABS plastic and marked the 3 spots where the supplied extinguisher bracket would attach to. I placed 3 rivnuts in those spots on the ABS plate. I then covered the back of the ABS with heavy duty 3M double stick tape, lifted a bit of the carpet behind the passenger seat and stuck the base exactly where I wanted it. I replaced the carpet over the base and marked the positions of the rivnuts on the base with a pick through the carpet, placed the metal bracket  that came with the extinguisher over the carpet covering the fabricated ABS plate and fixed it with 3 properly sized screws that would not extend past the rivnuts so as not to damage the car floor. I finally placed the extinguisher into it's bracket. The set up holds the extinguisher solidly in place and "no floors were drilled during the making of this film", 😉😂

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Realized that with the new fuse block setup the hood vent right above it will allow water (rain or otherwise) to come into contact with the electricals which are not as water resistant as the old fusible link arrangement. I decided to mirror the shape of the driver side hood vent liner to place under the passenger side vent. I modified it somewhat so that hot air outflow isn't restricted too much but will still prevent water from dripping directly onto the fuse block. So far I've completed the cardboard template. I will transfer that onto sheet metal soon and then paint.

 

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Passenger side hood vent liner template 3.jpg

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Passenger side hood vent liner template 5.jpg

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What an awesome build, love the color and all the custom/special touches you incorporated.  Your build is inspirational...I just started the restomod on my ‘78, it was a basket case so I have a long way to go.  I have a thread on here for mine...but I am mostly doing rust repairs right not.  Thanks for your work building this thread, it’s motivating!

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21 hours ago, Jethoncho said:

What an awesome build, love the color and all the custom/special touches you incorporated.  Your build is inspirational...I just started the restomod on my ‘78, it was a basket case so I have a long way to go.  I have a thread on here for mine...but I am mostly doing rust repairs right not.  Thanks for your work building this thread, it’s motivating!

Thank you so much for appreciating all the thought and work that have gone into my Z. Put a similar amount of work into your build and I'm sure it'll turn out just as good or better than mine. I'll be following your posts so keep 'em coming fast and furious. Great luck! 

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In an effort to dial back the "mod" in "resto mod" in the cabin and bring back a bit more of the vintage look I went back to green illumination on my dials (still LED, of course), and threaded my original shift knob to fit the slightly thicker short-shifter shaft. Along with the Datsun Comp steering wheel I had already changed a few weeks back I think everything comes together nicely now and looks more like a stock '78 280Z.

 

 

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Edited by dmoralesbello

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After playing around with my suspension setup and changing my mind a few times as to setting the dial on my  adjustable Tokico Illumina struts, I got tired of broken and lost retaining pins for the strut tower covers and decided to fabricate an easy access port for the dial on the top of the rear strut. I used a 2.5" diameter screw cap and "neck" from a juice bottle (hard clear plastic) and adapted it to the strut tower cover. Took about an hour total time (and drinking tons of cranberry juice) but I can tune in my rear struts as easily as my fronts now.

 

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Edited by dmoralesbello

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I'm in the middle of a major upgrade to the front end: changing the stock front cross member to a beautifully designed tubular unit from Apex Engineered and a cast aluminum oil pan from Arizona Zcar. Still to come are  refreshed (media blasted and powder coated) control arms and strut housings, rebuilt steering rack and a new SS powder coated splash pan. In a couple of weeks I should also be getting new steering knuckles form Apex.

Here are some pics of the job so far.

 

 

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The front end work is complete: Tokico Illumina struts, Apex Engineered front crossmember, tie rods and steering knuckles, Arizona Z car aluminum oil pan, T3 tension rods, MSA anti away bar, rebuilt steering rack, Z Car Depot splash guard, powder coated stock control arms, strut housings and brake dust shields. Come to think of it, that was a lot of stuff! 

All the components went together well with the exception of the stock control arms which had to be "shaved" at the back so as to go properly into the new crossmember. Although they're all from different companies we were able to align the car without any problems. 



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Edited by dmoralesbello

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Restored the engine ID plate by tediously touching up each faded or missing line, letter and number with an extra fine tip black paint pen (Testors) and magnifying glasses. Put down 3 coats of matte clear over it once finished so I don't have to do this again any time soon. I'm quite satisfied with the results.

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17 hours ago, HuD 91gt said:

Really really nice job.   

 

I searched for that splash guard. It doesn’t look like they sell that one anymore? Only a reproduction one, which looks slightly different?

Thanks very much!

Here's the current link to the one I bought from Z Car Depot. It seems to be available. Maybe mine looks different from the angle of the pic but it's the same one.

https://zcardepot.com/products/splash-pan-panel-engine-shield-stainless-240z-280z?variant=19281169154161

Edited by dmoralesbello

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I think I'm getting to the point where all I've wanted to do to my Z has been done! I know it's hard to believe but I can't think of anything else. Of course, things are prone to breaking in a 40 year old plus car and I will surely be repairing whatever comes up.

I had been waiting for about 8 months for a couple of back ordered parts from Apex Engineered, namely the top brackets for the steering rack and the close ratio steering knuckles. Got those in the car yesterday and I spent the morning getting the car aligned again (perfect job by Mel's Reset here in Miami). Everything seems to be sitting in the right position, car drives and brakes straight, no tire rubbing, great steering response with much tighter feel. Very happy with the felt differences after installing these parts.

As always, here are a few pics. 

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Edited by dmoralesbello

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I got my hands on a JDM key "for Fairlady Z" made by Royal. The company apparently has not made these since the eighties but Irving Morales in California has a few for sale.

Got it cut today and will become my regular key. Very funky Japanese look.

Here's a pic with the OEM key on the left and the fancy key on the right.

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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.

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