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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:03 am 
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Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 9:24 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Webster, NY
This is my winter project, a 1972 240Z, nicknamed "Orange Peel".

The backstory: The car originally belonged to ZCCR's Mike Noonan who picked it up in Oklahoma about 10-12 years ago. The car was owned by an autocross fanatic, so the car's suspension was all set up for it, handled like on rails. Power came from a L28 with triple Mikuni's and a mild cam. Around 2010 Mike sold the car to my son in law Mike C. (lots of Mikes, so initials required) who wanted to put a 5.0 Mustang engine in it. He sold the L28 to ZCCR's Mike Krenzer who was thinking of a Z project at the time. Well, as many good intentioned projects go, Mike C. never got to put that 5.0 Ford engine in the Z and decided to put another L28 in the car, fix it up as such, drive it and eventually pass it on to my grandson Jayden in 10 years when he turned 16. Father and son came up with the car's nickname, very appropriate. Fate intervened and we lost Mike C. tragically last spring. Mike C.'s mother knew how much he loved that Z and wanted his son to have it, so she asked me to finish the project to get the car running and preserved for Jayden.

So the car is now in my garage, I've been gathering parts for months to get it done. Mike K. has agreed to sell me the engine back (less the Mikunis) and it's going back in the car matched up to a 5 speed. My awesome friends from ZCCR are kindly donating their time and labor to make this happen, I can't thank Mike Krenzer, Mike Noonan, Tom Bork, Frank Swaider, Bob Mooney, Same Hartley and Mike Yendrzeski enough. And my pal Matt Mathosian for kindly giving me a great deal on a SU intake for the car.

As of today, we've dropped the entire front suspension from the car, this week cleaning and painting it, then installing new wheel bearings, ball joints, tie rods, urethane bushings and all new braking system. Going to tidy up and paint the engine bay, it'll never be easier.

Next week, the engine. Stay tuned for updates!


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John Taddonio
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:34 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 12867
Location: CT
John, you're always helping somebody.

Heartwarming story, worthy endeavor. Sorry about Jayden's Mike; life is usually unfair.

Is this the car you needed a 'breadbox' air cleaner for?

During the early 1980s I toyed with the idea of dropping a 302 Ford V8 into my Z. I bought a used 302, spent a small fortune rebuilding it and just when I was within striking distance of the transplant, I learned that the "backwards" Ford oil pan simply won't fit into the Z engine bay. The pan interferes with the crossmember and no kit existed back then to convert it. Today there are dry-sump arrangements which would allow the engine to wear a different oil pan which WILL fit, and the front distributor allows the Ford engine to snug WAAYYY back against the firewall, unlike the GM swaps. But back in those days you would have had to make radical steel cutting on both the car and the engine to marry the two. I got sudden orders overseas and didn't even have time to sell the 302; I abandoned it on its engine stand in my garage when I left.

Frank

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1970 240Z


Last edited by Frank T on Thu Feb 09, 2017 6:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 10:21 am 
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Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 7:39 pm
Posts: 449
Location: Long Island, N.Y.
Sorry about your loss - John. Jayden has one hell of a Grandpa who can pass on the meaning of love, compassion and commitment. The car looks really good. Good luck with the project. I'm sure Jayden will be looking forward to helping you. :thumbs_up: 8)

Howard J

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1985 300ZX- GLL Dark Pewter Metallic - Survivor


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 11:35 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 19, 2017 9:21 am
Posts: 12
What other mods do you plan to do? An exhaust looks like a good addition to your car.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 9:18 am 
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Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 9:24 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Webster, NY
L28 running early SUs, 6 into one header, 2.5" exhaust. ZX close ratio 5 speed, R200 3:54 diff (may go to 3.9, not sure yet), urethane bushings all around. Just finished installing new wheel bearings, ball joints, tie rod ends last night. Painted up front suspension, looking pretty.

Tomorrow, the crew is gathering to reinstall the front suspension, new brakes, new master cylinders for brakes and clutch.

In the coming week or two, going to install fuel intake and exhaust, flywheel, clutch, tranny. Hope to get the drivetrain installed by the end of the month.

Stay tuned.....

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John Taddonio
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zcarnut@hotmail.com
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 9:47 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:53 pm
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Location: CT
Q: How do you guyz get the compressed front suspension off without hurting anyone?

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1970 240Z


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 8:19 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2016 7:11 am
Posts: 265
That is a great looking car. I've always loved those wheels too.

I think it's a great thing you're doing John, Jayden will grow to appreciate that as he grows up. That's a special gift you are giving him.

I'm looking forward to updates on this!

Frank, the front springs stay compressed as long as you don't remove the upper mount. Removing them as a unit from the car is no problem. Just heavy :roll:

Jay


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 9:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 12867
Location: CT
Jay,

In Hawaii that's what we were trying to do; we pulled the tops off to replace the struts. Nobody told us the stupid things were compressed and when we took them apart they about killed all of us and made one angry dent inside the wheel well. It looked like a balloon flying around that garage. With three of us bent over the work trying to get a handle on things, it was a wonder none of us was taken for a ride.

We learned immediately that Datsun required us to compress the whole unit when taking it apart. Scared me half to death.

But I was young and couldn't die. :roll:

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2017 10:05 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2016 7:11 am
Posts: 265
Wow!! :shock:

You got lucky Frank, I should have known you knew about them..... You are far too knowledgeable not to have. Sorry about that.

I'm amazed and glad no one was hurt. Those springs can be unforgiving.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 9:24 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Webster, NY
Update 2/12/17:

Took the front suspension off as a unit, disassembled, cleaned and painted. New wheel bearings and races, ball joints, tie rod ends, bushings, steering rack bellows, rotors. New calipers ready to bolt on. Starting to clean and detail the engine bay while the engine is out.

Engine is a L28, F54 block, N42 head. Was running triple Mikunis, now going to 3 screw SUs (thanks Matt!). This week installing new fuel pump and gear to run it. Ran a scope to look at the cylinders, all is well. Nice 6 into 2 coated header. Resurfaced flywheel and new clutch. 5 speed tranny refreshed with new gaskets and seals, good to go. Installing new brake and clutch hydraulics.

Stay tuned.....


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John Taddonio
President, Z Car Club of Rochester NY
zcarnut@hotmail.com
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:21 pm 
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Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 7:39 pm
Posts: 449
Location: Long Island, N.Y.
HOLY SCHIKES, BATMAN!! POW! ZZZAPOW! That is so impressive. The work, the detail, the super clean shop and yet... no picture of you (John) doing any of the work. :lol: lol. Just kidding John. You really know how to do it right the first time around. Beautiful, beautiful job. Keep posting photos of the progress. :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:

Howie

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:26 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 9:24 am
Posts: 1250
Location: Webster, NY
Update 2/18/17:

Reassembled the entire front suspension into one unit with new bushings, bearings, brakes. Still running the very good Mulholland struts and springs. Car was dialed in for Autocross already.

Spent the week stripping down the engine bay, never an easier time to do it with that gaping hole there. Repainted it orange except for the battery area. Since it was rust free, a noted Z problem spot, I decided to keep it that way by laying on a good coat of POR-15. Took the time to put everything back where it started, after detailing of course.

Tom, Frank and I bolted the front suspension back into place, new rotors and calipers. Good to go.

Now onto the engine. This coming week or so installing the SU carbs and intake, flywheel, clutch, starter, fuel pump and other assorted bits. New master cylinders for brake and clutch.

Then the drivetrain. stay tuned!


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John Taddonio
President, Z Car Club of Rochester NY
zcarnut@hotmail.com
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 12867
Location: CT
Nice work so far.
As an aside, if you ever want to install A/C, this is the exact time to do it. You have unhampered access to the firewall and engine bay. :wink:

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:43 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 14, 2009 9:24 am
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Location: Webster, NY
Frank, the car had antiquated A/C from the 1970s already installed. I took it out. The components were HUGE and cumbersome, the unit itself took up most of the passenger foot well. Tons of tubing running around the engine compartment. And it didn't work.

If in a HOT weather state maybe I'd consider an upgrade, but not in my part of the world. And besides, all of that crap was HEAVY. It's all about horsepower-to-weight, isn't it?? :wink:

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John Taddonio
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zcarnut@hotmail.com
FB: Zccr zcarclubofrochester


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 3:59 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:53 pm
Posts: 12867
Location: CT
It was.
Recently is has more to do with humidity-to-age. :roll:

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1970 240Z


Last edited by Frank T on Mon Feb 27, 2017 1:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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