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EVENTS: The ZONC Annual Car Show

Filed under: Events,Featured Cars and Projects
by Alvin G @ 3:07 am on December 4, 2017

 

Love for the Z is strong in Northern California

The Z Owners of Northern California (ZONC) is one of the oldest Z car clubs in the nation. In its prime they had over 600 members with close ties to Yutaka Katayama (“Mr. K”) and Nissan USA. Of the many events and fun runs they host throughout the year including the famous Blackhawk Museum Show, we had a wonderful time attending their ZONC Annual Car Show in Brisbane, CA held on July 22, 2017.

 

 

This was a relaxed, relatively small gathering of enthusiasts that we shared with a group of ZCG customers and friends. Our Saturday morning caravan to the show began at the shop with seven Z cars, one roadster and a C110 Kenmeri Skyline:

 

Here is a short video of the ride to Brisbane with all of our cars…just Enjoying The Ride on a Saturday!

 

Highlights from the show

Still to this day, 240Zs are the most represented model in the club. Expansion over time currently includes all recent Z models and the GT-R, but also reaches back in time to include the Datsun Roadsters and 510s.  41 cars were displayed this year, each one of them special and showing pride of ownership. The only model missing from the show was the Z31 300ZX and that’s because the only one registered somehow overheated on the way.

 

From showroom stock to wildly-modified the S30 selection was diverse. We are very proud of ZCG customer James S’ 1972 240z. This hot rod sports a Rebello 3.2 L-series engine with boost provided by a GTX3576R turbo and Haltech management.  The exterior is quite menacing with large carbon fiber flares containing 17″ VOLK TE37 wheels wrapped in sticky Kumho slicks. ZCG Big Brakes are at all four corners. Stay tuned for a full report on this beast as we dial in the E85 tuning!

 

  
 

Frank Burkeen’s stunning Series 1 240z is the result of a full rotisserie restoration. We will have a full report on this build soon, but if you take close look at that stock engine bay it’s impossible to tell that it makes about 50hp more than stock!

 

Frank is also a long-time ZCG customer and his wife drove his other Z car, a bright orange fuel-injected canyon carver. We love the Chevlon mesh wheels and they do a superb job of framing our ZCG Big Brakes!

 

Our friend and fellow vintage racer Glenn Chiou’s 1971 Nissan Fairlady 240Z-L is a RHD model with a Rebello heart and a host of period goodies. The original paint is impressive and this car just looks so “right” from all angles.

  
 

260z and 280z

ZCG customer Joe A showed his pretty 260z, fresh from the shop (full report on the blog soon)

  
 

Linda W’s 1978 280z

 

S130

Who could forget the S130 280zx! Black Gold too:

 

People

We like this show because of the laid-back atmosphere and good folks that organize it. You won’t find Drake or EDM blasting through loudspeakers here. No bikini contests.  Just Z-car and Nissan/Datsun enthusiasts simply sharing their love about cars.

Z32

 

11 Z32 300zx cars were displayed ranging from high-mileage survivors with original owners to show-spec pristine examples. Kevin N and Joe K’s Z32 Twin Turbos are both top-level examples of highly modified yet tasteful machines:

 

Jack and Yolanda’s famous widebody Z32s. Jack is the creator of the original “primadonnaZ” back in the 70’s.

 

This 1994 NA Z32 caught our eye because it had 332k miles from its original owner!

 

Z33


If you are a fan of Japanese classic cars there’s a good chance that you have visited Japanese Nostalgic Car. JNC’s senior minicar correspondent and all-around J-Tin guru is Ricky Silverio and he is also a Z-car owner! Here is his pristine, 10k-mile 2003 350z Track model that we will be performing services on soon. Like his other sports cars, Ricky shows impeccable taste in his “OEM+” mods. Check out more pics in the gallery as there are many “easter eggs” in his Z!

 
 

Z34

This is the first show since 2009 that Nissan USA helped support and ZONC was very happy to have a new NISMO 370Z  on display:

 

We spotted this pair of of white NISMO Z’s. Nissan’s final evolution of the Z34 is the best looking, in our opinion:

 
 

510s

 

Three Datsuns 510s showed up, two with KA24s and one sporting an L-series. Datsun die-hards may remember this familiar 510 that belonged to builder Gary Jervis:

 

Our favorite (and the crowd’s too) was Matt’s 510. This boosted KA24DE Dime ticks all the right boxes for our love of low-flying bricks, and he also won 1st place for Best 510!

The Kenmeri Skyline

Alex M lent us his C110 Skyline to participate in the show. It was well received and even won an award!

Roadsters and Best of Show

The lone Datsun Roadster, and winner of Best of Show award went to Dan M’s pretty ’69 Datsun 2000. Dan also brought his ’72 240z!

 

Vanity plates

It’s no secret Z car owners have the best vanity plates! Some notables:

  
 

Parking lot finds

The beautiful venue is also a public park so plenty of folks stopped by to check out the Z’s.

 
 

Award Winners

It is always great to see ZCG customers carrying home awards for their pride and joy.

James S won Best Modified and Super Modified! Joe A won best 260z and Frank M won Best Stock 240z!

 

See you next year!

Spending the day at the ZONC Annual Car Show was a welcome experience that reminded us to, in the words of the late Mr.K, ” Love cars. Love people. Love Life.”  We look forward to the next show keep an eye on our event updates and Z you soon! Don’t forget to check out our picture gallery below! Big thanks to the ZONC organizers and Ricky Silverio for sharing his photos with us.

 

 

 

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Scott’s 300zx Convertible

Filed under: Featured Cars and Projects,Maintenance,Performance
by Alvin G @ 3:04 pm on January 27, 2017

 

Scott N visited ZCG because he felt the suspension on his 1994 Z32 ‘Vert could be improved.  The Z33 Rays wheels look sharp on this 300! We installed TEIN coil-overs and a few other goodies:


Here are the existing shocks and the new TEIN street coil-overs going in front and rear:


Z1 upper control arms:

 

SPL tension rods so we could fully adjust camber up front:

 

The rack bushings are vey common problem on z32s so we replaced them. In the back: the aftermarket adjustable upper control arms were making noise so we replaced them with OEM parts and performed a full alignment.

Scott is super happy and Enjoying The Ride!

 

 




Martin’s 1991 300zx Twin Turbo

Filed under: Featured Cars and Projects,Maintenance,Performance
by Alvin G @ 3:05 am on December 18, 2016

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Martin B has owned this 1991 300zx Twin Turbo Z for a very long time. With 237,000 miles on the clock he visited Z Car Garage for the first time in 2013. The difference between a general repair shop, an independent repair shop and a Z car expert is a big deal on a Z32 because it is a car that you can get behind on quickly. If you are not well-versed in this chassis you will throw parts at it endlessly, often leading to more repairs.

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After more than two decades of working with Nissans, the crew at ZCG have got it down. The 90-96 Z32s are some of the raddest Japanese sports cars of the era. We know what to do and what not to do. For Martin’s first visit we corrected the knock sensor and harness, replaced the clutch with a JWT HD unit, turned the existing flywheel, replaced center support bearing, clutch M/C, power steering hoses and corrected rack bushings:

 

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JWT Clutch and flywheel

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Heater core repair:

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We installed a few suspension parts including new adjustable camber arms:

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SpecialtyZ exhaust and downpipes:

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The transmission had several leaks needing attention:

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After 237k miles the driver’s seat had seen better days so we rebuilt it from frame to padding and sent Martin on his way…

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Later that year, after enjoying the car with the ZCG touches he felt that it earned a place in his collection. With 240k miles on clock,  we removed his engine/transmission for a rebuild using a Rebello VG30DETT with JE pistons, Eagle rod and balanced with ACL bearings. Full engine bay harness service as well. Many more pictures of the build in the gallery below!

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All hoses and parts in the engine bay that are relatively inexpensive were replaced while the engine was out:

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The drivetrain is installed and buttoned up. A clean Z32TT engine bay is a treat to look at, despite the complexity:

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On the dyno the freshened engine made 318hp/320tq to the wheels:

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It has been since 2013 and Martin’s Z now has 255k mile on the clock. We touched up everything and added some Work Emotion wheels (not pictured).

Enjoy The Ride, Martin!

 

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Please browse our picture gallery after the jump

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One LS3 Z32: Mo’s 300zx

Filed under: Featured Cars and Projects,Maintenance
by Alvin G @ 1:02 pm on September 4, 2016

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Mo M comes out of Capitola, CA and he is a car enthusiast with a show-winning Toyota MR2 that he built last year. His next project is this NA 300zx with a planned V8 engine swap (LS3). Before the Z receives the new drivetrain, Mo wanted to make sure it could handle the power.

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We went through the entire car with Mo and installed his suspension parts including full Powertrix coil-over suspension, f/r camber arms, new T/C rods and sway bars:

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Stock suspension vs new coil-overs

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Fender rolling:

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One of the things plaguing Mo was that he had several general repair shops work on the car. They replaced the clutch and flywheel assembly but he was getting a persistent grinding upon startup. We replaced the starter, installed a JWT aluminum flywheel and clutch.  We also fixed brake master cylinder.

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Now Mo is super pumped about the car’s handling and brakes. The next set of mods include a nice set of SSR Professor MS3 wheels and big brakes to handle the power of that mighty LS3 engine that’s coming soon!

 

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Ron B. Jr met Rob Fuller in the early 2000s. At the time Ron had a 300zx Twin-Turbo that ZCG serviced. Sadly, one day Ron decided he was done with the Z32 and sold it. One of our customers actually bought it and we think it is still out there being enjoyed. Ron wasn’t entirely done with Z’s as he picked up a 350z Track model (shown at Thunderhill in 2006):

300ZX 350Z
 

Some 15 years later after meeting Rob, Ron had got another Z. Why? Once you have a Z it is in your blood and hard to get it out of your life! This latest Z obsession came in the form of a 2012 Nismo 370:

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Ron loved this car but he was missing something. We all long for it: BOOST! So he gave ZCG call, reconnected with Rob and reminisced about the old days with the 300. It was decided, we would make Ron’s car one of the first jobs of 2016 using a Stillen supercharger kit.

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The Stillen kit comes with a polished V-3 blower, 25-row oil cooler and we add GT-R plugs. Due to higher inlet temperatures observed on these builds we are starting to upgrade the stock water-to-air cooler. Frozen Boost makes a larger cooler shown below:

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A few shots of the kit installation:

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Before and after:

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We love the PLX Devices DM100 gauge that neatly replaces the clock with…

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… a multi-function display for vitals like boost, air intake temp and wideband:

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Another addition to the interior was a new NISMO shift knob:

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Got the Z on the dyno and out of the box the Stillen supercharger added 82hp/42tq to the wheels:

 

Ron B Z34 Baseline and Stillen Supercharger
 

With UPREV tuning we saw significant gains of 120hp/85tq above stock for a grand total of 410hp/326tq to the wheels:

Ron B Z34 Stillen Baseline to Final
 

With 410hp to the wheels one would think Ron’s Z car obsession is satisfied…he is really feeling the need for another 300zx Twin Turbo in his life so we are on the hunt for a pearl white 90-92 Z32TT with black/tan interior. From Z32 to Z33 to Z34, if the Z is in your blood we can help you live with it!

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Keep Boosting Ron and Long Live The Z!




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