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bramagedained 07-10-2015 11:37 AM

My "new" car/project.
I recently bought a really nice 260z, that already has a SBC and automatic. Swap was done sometime in the 90's and apparently saw nearly no miles after it was done. Not enough miles for either of the 2 previous owners to be bothered to get the right combo of drive gears to correct the speedo, for example. When I bought it, the tires were from 1992.


The car is really in amazing shape. There's one small spot underneath starting to rust. The hatch, battery tray, tool/spare wells, fenders, hood, are all pristine. It still has what I can only assume is the OEM spare with a date code of 473 which I assume corresponds to 47th week of 73. It also came with the OEM manual, window sticker, radio guide, tool kit, jack and wheel chocks. The electric rear defrost, map light, and motor to raise/lower the antenna work. The light under the hood still works, too. Brake pads/shoes were replaced last year.

I actually saw it posted via reddit from craigslist. Car was near Richmond, VA and I have a buddy from the Army that lives in DC so he checked it out for me. I bought a ticket from Minnesota to DC, cash in hand, without ever seeing the car in person myself and planned on driving it home, which I did.

Eventually, it needs to be as fast/faster than my last car. But, at the same time, needs to hide what it is as much as possible.

How it sits now:

350 from 1979.

-Originally 170hp.
-It has a cam(unknown).
-Holley 600.
-Accel coil.
-Edelbrock Streetmaster intake(apparently these were a 70's thing).
-Holley fuel pump.
-Electric fans on a thermostat. Super awesome, I got stuck in traffic when it was ~90° and it didn't get hot.

TH350 I assume from 1979 with the motor.

-Feels like there's a shift kit.

Issues as it sits:

-Couple of oil leaks to chase down. It appears to be timing cover and oil pan gaskets. Not major, but, it bothers me that it leaks at all.
-Speedo quit working in Iowa, it was ~10% off anyway.
-In dash tach doesn't work, an old Sun SuperTach is mounted on the dash.
-Mystery clunk from the rear, doesn't feel like any of the U-Joints.
-Outer bolster on the driver's seat has wear, not quite to the point of tearing, but, it's fairly close.(Yes, this level of nit-picky of things not 100% right with the car)
-Turn signal doesn't reliably auto cancel. I'm not sure if it's worth taking things apart(with the risk of damaging something else in the process) to try and get that working correctly, I've already developed the habit of turning them off manually. I have a background in electronics, my concern is over the parts I'd have to remove to get to the switch itself.
-Rheostat for the dimmer died. It worked until I started playing with it.
-It is geared really short with the TH350 and factory 3.90 rear end. 70mph is 3500 rpm.

Things found wrong on the way home:

-The fuel pump had a bad gasket internally, and the era of holley pump that was on it came with weep holes for oil when that gasket failed. So, $100 for a fuel pump from O'Riellys and I was good to go.
-The other leak was the valve cover gaskets, another $22 from Autozone.
-Ate the v-belt, luckily right before an exit on the interstate with services. I think it was $13 from an actual service station, which was about a mile walk into town from the gas station at the interchange.

Things already done:

-New fuel pump. $100
-New valve cover gaskets. $22
-New Tires. $250(lol)
-New V-belt. $13

Things coming soon™ in the next couple of months:

Done-Autometer speedo and tach. I'm sort of torn between the at-a-glance of the Phantom Series(which will stand out in the dash with the white face) and the Pro-Comp ones which have a black face.
Done-Do something about the lighting of the OEM oil/temp/amp gauges to make it a bit brighter and more even.
-Fix remaining oil leaks.
-Get it dyno'd to have the timing/carb jetting checked out.
Done-Make sure the clunk isn't a u-joint, the whole rear end will be changed out this winter anyway. If it's a bushing it will probably get left for the remainder of summer.
-Address the one rust spot.
Done-Check wheel bearings. At the very least, repack with grease.
Done-Check out the rheostat for dimmer. Either see if it can be repaired, rig something up with a pot, or, use a variable resistor to get to a light level I like and leave it alone. Right now, I just have it bypassed.
Done-Ditch the push in breathers on the valve covers for a catch can.

Planned changes for this coming winter(2015-16):

-New rear suspension/diff/brakes. There is a frankenstein setup on Hybridz, using a ford 8.8, combination of porsche and ford CVs, hubs from an intrepid and some fabbed mounts. It's a bolt-in to stock location setup.
-New front suspension/brakes.
-Poly bushings for whatever is left.
-Flares? I've actually had a few people tell me that the car is just too nice as it is to cut the fenders for flares. Supposedly, you can get a 275 radial to fit in the back without flares with exactly the right offset wheels, brand tire and alignment.

Plans for next winter(2016-2017):

-Turbo 5.3 It's so widely done, I can gather parts over the summer so there's not such a big hit all at once for cost.
-Built TH400
-Cage? Probably worse than people telling me it's too nice to cut the fenders for flares. I don't like the idea of a cage in a street car, but, something would need to be done to keep the chassis straight with the power and a sticky tire. At least I've decided against having it back-halved for a 4-link, right?
-NHRA safety stuff. If I'm honest, the car will probably rarely see a track, but, get used quite a lot.

A//// Guy 07-10-2015 12:03 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Very nice!! Super clean too, great find!

1ViciousGSX 07-10-2015 12:14 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Love those cars.

Halon 07-10-2015 12:50 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Very cool

Kracka 07-10-2015 01:00 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
I bet that trip home was a blast...great machine!

bramagedained 07-10-2015 01:11 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Aside from the belt thing, it was.

It's surprisingly comfortable to ride in, and for being a big guy I have lots of room.

Instead of interstate the whole way, I took a detour on US highways through West Virginia. It had the bonus of avoiding a ton of construction and a few tolls. It was a beautiful morning to drive through the mountains. Would have been more fun, if I wasn't running the 23 year old tires.

The belt thing was sort of exciting. It must have landed on the exhaust and started dumping smoke into the cabin. There was a slight moment of panic until I noticed the amp gauge was negative and temp was climbing.

Even doing 3500rpm at 70mph, I still averaged 17mph for the trip home which I was a bit surprised by.

I'll probably order new seals for around the hatch, too. It doesn't leak when soaked with a hose, but, they're visibly dried out from age. The inner one was replaced at some point, but, the outer wasn't.

MorningWood 07-10-2015 03:40 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
That thing looks awesome for its age. Glad to see you finally were able to pick one up! I'm excited to see where it goes

turbotalon1g 07-10-2015 04:00 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
I used to have one of these, I'd like to see what a complete one looks like.

carltalon 07-10-2015 04:15 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Very cool. I'd love to have one of these some day. 5.3 turbo will be so fun. I. Agree the car is to clean to cut up. Is there any other way to add rigidity without doing a Cage? Sub frame connectors etc? I had a caged street car and it became a pain in the ass very quickly, and ended up staying in the garage all the time.

bramagedained 07-11-2015 01:56 AM

Re: My "new" car/project.

Originally Posted by carltalon (Post 456910)
Very cool. I'd love to have one of these some day. 5.3 turbo will be so fun. I. Agree the car is to clean to cut up. Is there any other way to add rigidity without doing a Cage? Sub frame connectors etc? I had a caged street car and it became a pain in the ass very quickly, and ended up staying in the garage all the time.

Sort of.

It involves boxing in some openings, cutting up the floor to run new tube, adding to the front/rear strut mounts then tying them together and tying them to the new stronger rails.

But, people who have done that was for <500whp and <275 radial.

I can't find much on people who have gone >500whp on a big tire(which in this case is ~275 drag radial or more) without a cage of some sort.

Speedfreak 07-11-2015 02:42 AM

Re: My "new" car/project.
It's clean, but its already modded. If this car isn't ever going to go completely stock/renovated and sit another thirty years until it would be a collector, then no reason not to cage it or whatever is needed to accomplish the goal.

I'd say do it. The second I saw you wanted to go as fast as the last car, I thought 4 link etc.

goodhart 07-11-2015 09:33 AM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Awesome! Can't wait to see this thing progress

TkrPerformance 07-11-2015 02:09 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Car looked great going down 494 at 1230 today

bramagedained 07-12-2015 04:51 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
You werent stuck in the stopped traffic trying to go south, were you?

TkrPerformance 07-12-2015 05:02 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
nope went right past you in the dd mirage going to maple grove days

bramagedained 07-12-2015 05:48 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Ahh, I didn't notice.

I was pretty burnt out after very little sleep then being out on the lake for the morning.

C3L1CA 07-12-2015 06:11 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Nice! Looks like a clean car and knowing your evo it should turn out pretty pimp

1QUICK4 07-12-2015 07:07 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.
Looks nice but I'd 4G6x swap that bish haha

bramagedained 07-12-2015 07:26 PM

Re: My "new" car/project.

Originally Posted by 1QUICK4 (Post 456942)
Looks nice but I'd 4G6x swap that bish haha

When I first had this idea, I considered keeping the longblock, turbo, fuel system from the Evo.

1QUICK4 07-13-2015 01:01 AM

Re: My "new" car/project.
You'll like the 5.3T though. Should be fun
I'm going with an L33 with a baby 70mm in my Malibu

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