ZcarBlog fans gather around! We have major developments in Gary R’s 280z restoration! Our first installment in this build chronicled the extensive body rehab, followed by chassis developments and now we can report that the drivetrain is ready along with many body trim pieces.
The engine is a Rebello built 3.1L using the factory fuel injection system. Below you can see how the unsightly stock intake manifold was transformed into a thing of beauty…
Another ZCarGarage modification is the modern 5-speed transmission conversion. The old 280z’s 4-speed is replaced by a late-model Nissan 240SX 5-spd transmission. To top it all off the whole thing was powdercoated and a JWT aluminum flywheel and JWT HD clutch were installed. Note the beautiful ceramic coated exhaust header:
As we move past the engine and transmission it keeps getting better! The stock rear differential is replaced by a beefy R200 with 4.11 gears and a Quaife LSD unit, that’s one pretty pumpkin!
Sending power to those massive 255-width tires are Wolf Creek Racing CV axles. Why convert to CVs? CV joints articulate better, reduce unpsrung mass, and transmit power better than stock u-joints:
The power window and door lock conversion is complete! Remember all of those zinc plated nuts/bolts/hardware? These pieces are finding their way back to the Z. The rear quarter windows with trim powdercoated black have been installed too:
The front/rear bumpers needed some love and now they are back on the car looking pretty:
The fuel system is also complete and the Z is at the interior shop. There are many more pictures in the gallery, stay tuned for more updates as Gary’s Z gets closer to completion! …[read more]
Lou S is the owner of this right-hand drive 240z that got the full ZCarGarage performance suspension treatment last year shown HERE. With the handling and footwork sorted the Fairlady has received several improvements that add to both the driving experience and aesthetics.
The Z’s vinyl seats had seen better days with a few rips and tears so new Recaro LXF seats were installed. These are some of the best seats for your Z and a huge improvement over the stock pieces in terms of comfort and grip…letting Lou take advantage of that grippy new suspension!
Another upgrade to the interior was the steering wheel. The tuner-ish “D” shaped wheel was replaced by one of the best period-looking units on the market today: The MOMO Prototipo. I love this steering wheel:
The Fairlady’s tired chrome bumpers got replaced with brand new show-quality pieces and for a cleaner look the over-riders were not installed.: …[read more]
It is always great to hear stories from original Z-car owners. Joe A came to ZCarGarage to restore his 1974 260z after 36 years of ownership! He had become familiar with ZCG through our local club, ZONC. After carefully inspecting the car, Rob and Joe sat down and discussed several procedures that would update and improve the car. They decided on a complete engine rebuild with tuned exhaust, and removing all smog devices since the car was over 35 years old.
Here are a few pictures of the engine bay after removing the drivetrain:
The engine was rebuilt with a mild cam and dyno results showed nice gains of 23 rwhp and 13tq!
The engine bay and underhood had to look just as beautiful as the body so William painted everything back to the original exterior color. ZCG provided zinc plating and powdercoating services under the hood and all wiring harnesses were redone:
Here is Joe with a few words on how the Z became part of his life:
“It was January of 1969 and I had just been discharged from the Air Force. …[read more]
Filed under: Events
by Alvin G @ 12:46 pm on April 28, 2011
***ATTENTION DATSUN FANS***
There are TWO exciting Datsun events this weekend! Saturday, 4/30
The Solvang Datsun Roadster Show is being held in beautiful downtown Solvang, CA.
A record number of Datsuns will be racing at Laguna Seca with HSR on Sunday, 5/1
If you are a Datsun fan and love vintage racing come out to Laguna Seca this weekend! On 5/1 the Historic Sportscar Racing group is bringing an exciting event with plenty of historic race cars and several notable Datsun racers! If you can’t make the Solvang Datsun Roadster Show (held on Saturday) this is another way to get your Datsun fix! We will do our best to attend on Sunday afternoon where the Datsuns are running in group 3. We also want to be there to cheer on our favorite Datsun Roadster racer, Ron Carter!
So just how strong will the Datsun showing be? At least TWENTY 510s, Zs, and Roadsters! Come on out to ‘Seca and watch these Datsun vintage racers mix it up with exotics and other wicked metal
Ken P has been a Datsun roadster owner and enthusiast since the early 90′s. He’s an original member of the Bay Area Datsun Roadster Owner’s Club (BADROC) and owns this highly modified 1969 2000 Datsun roadster, affectionately called “DATSTER”. Ken brought his car to ZCarGarage to get tuned, but let me share a little history with you since it has a special place in my roadster heart.
I met Ken at the Solvang Datsun Roadster Show back in 2001 and remember seeing all of his modifications for the first time. What really caught my eye was the paint and bodywork. Shaved door handles and side markers, no door or vent windows, and beautifully applied BMW Technoviolet paint really turned this into a hot rod. The interior was simple with no center console, re-uphostered seats, and a roll-bar. Over the years Ken kept adding his own touches and personality to the car including a trick hidden antenna and HID Xenon headlights adapted from a late-model BMW.
Under the hood lay Nissan’s mighty U20 drivetrain complete with several period go-fast parts like Mikuni-Solex side-draft carbs and a hotter camshaft. 14″ Panasports on sticky A032R tires and a full NISMO competition suspension made for a very fun little roadster.
I almost bought his car from him about 8 years ago but fate and the fact that Ken just can’t leave things alone led him to the next level of the DATSTER’s evolution. He removed and sold the U20 setup and with the funds(and money left to spare) purchased and installed a Nissan KA24DE drivetrain from a 240sx. Ken did the installation himself and added a few more custom touches like a metal dashboard color-matched to the body that houses the 240sx gauge cluster and S13 (of course!) seats.
Ken continued to drive and enjoy the new KA setup by doing fun runs, autocrosses, and even drag race events. He wasn’t done yet though and decided to add boost to the motor in a rather unorthodox way: supercharging! A supercharger setup was sourced from a race car and Ken made numerous modifications to make it work in his engine bay. The blower is mounted just above the frame rail but hidden under the intake runners. A custom throttle-body and pulley system were necessary.
Rob and the crew at ZCarGarage have worked on many roadsters, from bone stock to modified. Ken came to ZCG because he wanted to make sure his supercharged engine was tuned correctly for longevity and power. Baseline numbers were 159hp/156tq, and it was definitely in need of a proper tune. Rob and Clark Steppler tuned the roadster using a JWT ECU to safely boost at 8lbs and make some great power: 180hp/171tq at the wheels!!! The dyno plot reveals the beauty of a roots-style supercharger: a broad torque curve with over 150tq available from 2000rpm to 6000rpm! We think Ken is happier now
So with all of the ingenuity, modifications and big power is Ken finally “done”? Nope. He is currently engineering stronger brakes that will fit within those classy 14″ Panasports. Datsun owners are truly one of a kind!
Here are a few clips of Ken’s supercharged roadster in action and many more pictures in the gallery, enjoy!