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vbgambini

Help needed for my 280z project FL

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Sorry guys I posted in the wrong areas, still new to the forums and was not sure where to post my topic. 

 

Guys I wanted to know if there is anyone in the South Florida (North Miami) area to help me with my 78 280z project. I have so many things I want to do and will probably need some help and guidance before I chop my car up lol (fender flarescoilovers, floor pans, etc.) Looking to get coilovers soon (Not sure which ones yet and that dont cost an arm and a leg) and with no welding experience I dont think I can tackle this conversion or any type of welding on my own. Wanted to reach out to the Florida Z owners and see if anyone with experience doing this to their Z. Thanks for the help.

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I would suggest telling folks a bit more about your project first.  Give lots of details (condition, specific plans, what you want out of the project, etc.) and post some pictures.  Maybe start a post in the "Member s Projects" forum.  Basically, show everyone what you have and what you have accomplished so far to get them interested in your project and show that you are worth helping (not saying you arent, just that there are a lot of folks that pop up on this forum just looking for help and dont care to contribute to the community themselves).  People are not very likely to help someone who just asks a very broad question.  I understand that you are specifically asking for someone in your location to help you out, but it is hard for people to get interested in your project if they know nothing about it.  

 

Again, just a suggestion, not trying to give you a hard time.  Just trying to do what I can to help from 900 miles away :-)

Anyways, good luck with your Z endeavors!

 

Pillar

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1st, do you have tools?

 

2nd, get a JTR book if you are going V-8, read it 10 times, then read it 10 more, keep it next to the toilet ( I did)

 

As far as suspension, this is the first place I start, given the car is running.

 

Do you really need the coil overs or just WANT coil overs?  I'd go with a set of new springs and struts.  This is an easy way to become aquanted with the car.  Get a bushing kit, ball joints and tie rod ends, you;re not a "real" z guy until you do the lower control arm bushings, period ;)

 

The v8 swap isn't that hard.  I had not spun a wrench in years before I started doing my conversion just took my time.  As far as engine, are you going crate or build?  If I could do it again, I'd go crate.  You don't really need 400+ HP (you may want it but not totally necessary, more torque= more stress on parts= breakage.)

 

Or LS engine. 

 

Finally...if you really need new floor pans, I'd find another car.  If the pans are bad the frame rails are bad, more than likely the firewall and where the TC rods connect are bad too.  To weld this all up (assuming you're having a shop do it) it's going to cost you, quite a bit.  I would figure with pans, frame rails and some bad dog sub frame connectors + labor.  I think you'd be in the neighboorhood of $2,000 (parts $459 at the ones I just looked at.  Unless these can just be patched, I'd have to see to know

 

Fender flairs, have them cut you're fenders while you're there, probably run you another $400.  So based on this you'll be in it for around $2400+/- just to get the car solid.

 

Just talking from experience.  As stated above, if you're going to keep the car, start with the suspension.

 

d

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Suggestions:

 

  • If doing a V8 swap buy the Jags that Run (JTR) book and read it at least ten times. Book is useful for any engine swap.
  • Buy books/manuals for the engine and transmission you want to use.
  • Download a Factory Service Manual (FSM) and buy a Haynes repair manual for your specific car.
  • Download electrical schematics for your car.  PDFs are easier to read than those found in books. Some are in color.
  • Buy the book How to Restore Your Datsun Z Car by Wick Humble. It will save you hours of searching for "how to" info.
  • Focus on searching Hybridz as 99% of questions have already been addressed.
  • Make a detailed plan with parts list including cost before starting a project. Plan every system of the car.
  • Start bookmarking Z car parts suppliers - there are many!
  • Remember these are 40 year old cars and will need restoration to be safe and drivable.
  • Join ClassicZCars.com website and search there as well.
  • Become well informed about modifications before asking questions. People will be more inclined to answer informed questions.
  • Have some money. I stopped counting after $12k.
  • Read the new member FAQs.
  • The engine swap is the easy part. It is understanding the details like brake fittings, adapters, drive shaft angles, brake system, automotive electronics, wheels, suspension and etc. that makes or breaks a build project.
  • Recommend that you buy a running Z car and drive it stock for a awhile.  Do basic maintenance brakes, suspension, electrical etc. so you have a ready to drive platform when you finish the engine swap. You will learn a lot about auto mechanics and how the Z car functions as well.

 

 Useful Links:

http://zhome.com/

http://www.atlanticz.ca/

http://www.classiczc...com/index.html/

http://www.zcarparts.com/

http://www.blackdrag.../zZxCatalog.htm

http://www.arizonazcar.com/

http://www.jagsthatrun.com/index.html

Edited by Miles

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1st, do you have tools?

 

2nd, get a JTR book if you are going V-8, read it 10 times, then read it 10 more, keep it next to the toilet ( I did)

 

As far as suspension, this is the first place I start, given the car is running.

 

Do you really need the coil overs or just WANT coil overs?  I'd go with a set of new springs and struts.  This is an easy way to become aquanted with the car.  Get a bushing kit, ball joints and tie rod ends, you;re not a "real" z guy until you do the lower control arm bushings, period ;)

 

The v8 swap isn't that hard.  I had not spun a wrench in years before I started doing my conversion just took my time.  As far as engine, are you going crate or build?  If I could do it again, I'd go crate.  You don't really need 400+ HP (you may want it but not totally necessary, more torque= more stress on parts= breakage.)

 

Or LS engine. 

 

Finally...if you really need new floor pans, I'd find another car.  If the pans are bad the frame rails are bad, more than likely the firewall and where the TC rods connect are bad too.  To weld this all up (assuming you're having a shop do it) it's going to cost you, quite a bit.  I would figure with pans, frame rails and some bad dog sub frame connectors + labor.  I think you'd be in the neighboorhood of $2,000 (parts $459 at the ones I just looked at.  Unless these can just be patched, I'd have to see to know

 

Fender flairs, have them cut you're fenders while you're there, probably run you another $400.  So based on this you'll be in it for around $2400+/- just to get the car solid.

 

Just talking from experience.  As stated above, if you're going to keep the car, start with the suspension.

 

d

 

D

 

Thanks for the in sight. Sorry this might be a little long.  This is my first classic Z. It actually is a very solid car. I paid 2500$ and I've seen worse at that price. Had plenty 240sx before with a KA-t and my favorite one a 98 240sx 1J. So this is my first 280z that I want to build. And yes I am going to keep the car lol.

 

But first of yes I have a decent tool collection. I do what I can handle. And have time for on my driveway (No garage). I have the Haynes manual so far and all these forums. I bought the car not being able to start and realized it was just the starter. So I got it started and loved driving it. So far I did all the maintenance stuff. Plugs, wires, distributor cap and rotor, did the rear drums, oil change, fixed a little surface rust on the roof, fiber glassed a little hole in the passenger floor pan. Took up the bumpers, installed a front air dam and other little things I cant think of right now. 

 

There are little rust areas that need to be checked out besides little stuff on the body. I think the TC rod area on the frame on the passenger side might need a little attention. The driver side looks ok. I already have the bad dog frame rails ready to be welded. Under battery tray needs some repair too. But otherwise a very solid and fun car to drive.

 

I am not looking to do a V8 swap and really trying to keep it all Nissan. Was thinking a L28ET. I gotta go boost lol. At least 400 HP. Kinda spoiled with my old 240sx making 528HP. But like everyone I am on a budget and need to think things through on what I want to spend because I also want to enjoy the car as well and not let it sit in a shop forever. Would like to do things little by little. And if possible some help with some local guys rather than a shop that wont cost me an arm and a leg. I know it will take a long time to build it the way I want but I am trying to enjoy it while I work on it too if that makes any sense.

 

My plan so far besides boost and obvious paint and rust repair. Is suspension, Watanabe 16'' maybe 9 or 9.5 wide wheels, 240z front and rear bumpers, AC, and flares. Thats why I want coilovers, for lower stance, adjustability and extra wheel well space. Just trying to reach out to you guys and especially some Florida Z guys. Trying to find a starting point somewhere. 

 

If anything I can send  texts to anyone if they want to see pics of the car too. But really looking for some guidance and some FL guys. Thanks for reading.

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Sounds like you know your way around cars if you built a 528HP 240SX.  What engine were you running on that one?

 

Turbo guys can chime in here if an L28 can make that kind of power.  I've always been a V-8 guy.

 

One thing that always sounds funny to me (don't take this the wrong way!!!)

 

Watanabe wheels and budget.

 

Wat's ain't cheap!!!

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Sounds like you know your way around cars if you built a 528HP 240SX.  What engine were you running on that one?

 

Turbo guys can chime in here if an L28 can make that kind of power.  I've always been a V-8 guy.

 

One thing that always sounds funny to me (don't take this the wrong way!!!)

 

Watanabe wheels and budget.

 

Wat's ain't cheap!!!

 

Haha I am not an expert with cars, just learn as i go, and do much as I can bolt on. I still have a shop here that helps me do big things like engine swaps and electrical (hate electrical stuff lol) or anything I cant handle. Now welding which I have no experience in at all is coming into play now since it is my first classic car. I just like doing things the right way first as much as possible.

 

Wats are definitely not cheap. Suppoedly Techno Toy Tuning has them for 1650$ shipped. I had Work Meisters on my 240sx. Those were not cheap either. But my budget meaning things I want, should, and can do first I guess with the money I have then save up again lol. But putting the money in the right places and parts. BTW doesnt take much to make power out of a 1J supra motor. Guys make way more power out of that thing stock here in Miami. But I hear these cars with like 400HP would be plenty. At least for the time being lol.

Edited by vbgambini

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I have so many things I want to do and will probably need some help and guidance before I chop my car up lol (fender flarescoilovers, floor pans, etc.) Looking to get coilovers soon (Not sure which ones yet and that dont cost an arm and a leg) and with no welding experience I dont think I can tackle this conversion or any type of welding on my own. Wanted to reach out to the Florida Z owners and see if anyone with experience doing this to their Z. Thanks for the help.

 

Frankly, this looks like a quagmire.  A big list of difficult things (flares, coilovers, and floor pans aren't that easy), not much many to spend, talk about "chopping" things up, with "lol" thrown in the mix.  

 

Probably best to offer free beer to anybody that will just stop by and check out your car.  Give them a chance to see if they want to get involved. 

 

At least you didn't start with a giant HELP ME!.  I hate seeing that.

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Frankly, this looks like a quagmire.  A big list of difficult things (flares, coilovers, and floor pans aren't that easy), not much many to spend, talk about "chopping" things up, with "lol" thrown in the mix.  

 

Probably best to offer free beer to anybody that will just stop by and check out your car.  Give them a chance to see if they want to get involved. 

 

At least you didn't start with a giant HELP ME!.  I hate seeing that.

 

Well these difficult things makes these cars awesome and I dont think I will want to settle for less. I rather spend the money right first then spend it again and change it. Been through those days before lol. I know I will not get it all in one shot but I would like to get there eventually. Litttle by little. But I do know I dont want to chop it up and mess it up and spend more to fix it again lol. Just trying to get a start somewhere and get some advice. Especially need some Miami or Florida guys anywhere near my area. Dont want to annoy you guys either with this rookie talk just looking for a little help.

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Post some pictures.  Pick one project.  Start working on it.  Looks like nobody is going to offer to come over and help in person, so that's the next step if you want to make some progress.  Or you can write more stuff on the internet.

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Since you are wanting to do coil overs, floors and frame rails, you need a welder! Buy yourself a MiG welder that uses gas and get a bottle. Practice, practice, and practice some more. Do your own welding because it is going to be difficult to even find someone who will tackle floors and frame rails for less than the cost of the welding machine.

My .02 centavos.

chris

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