Datsloco, Livermore – My 1st Meet

Dat’s right! Datsloco!

My previous posts have all been car shows (which i’m quite fond of) like the Willow Glen classic, but this was my 1st MEET! I was super excited to say the least. Datsloco is a local meet organized by a guy named Gino, usually held in the Livermore area, and simply just peeps and their Datsuns.  Well of course they had plenty of parts for sale, bbq (supposedly Gino makes an off the hook carne asada), and even a guy workin on his tranny in the parking lot.

Before the meet though, first things first: a pint.  Campfire stout @ Tap25.

Highwater Campfire Stout

Though we got there a few hours from the end, there were plenty of Datsun trucks, and every variety of 510’s possible: 2-dr, 4-dr, Bluebirds, Coupes, and even a RHD from Japan. Two other Z’s remained when we rolled in. Additionally, a Nissan 240sx and 70’s Toyota Corona rounded it out. OK, HOODS UP!

Gino’s Bluebird Coupe – if this doesn’t make you want one…

 

 

You can just hear the snarl on this one.

 

Super hilarious!

 

 

Dean’s 240z w/ Fairlady Z432 grill

 

Hoods up!

 

 

 

Triple carbs on a L28 engine w/ polished valve cover – love it.

There were a few Crown Royal bags around

 

 

A RHD Bluebird Coupe from Japan!

 

 

Someone testing out some gold Watanabe wheels. I like Wats, but the wheels he had on already looked great.

 

 

Powder blue wasn’t no slouch – just check out where all the color is…

 

 

Z Owners of Nor Cal Annual Car Show – Brisbane Marina

Z Owners of Northern California (ZONC) are having their Annual Car Show at the Brisbane Marina on July 28th, 2012!

Wow, that first sentence just sums it all up. There’ll be plenty of 240Z, 260Z, 280Z, 350Z and 370Z cars you can shake a stick at, with a special section just for the older cars. Of course plenty of 510’s, Datsun Roadsters, G35 coupes and GT-Rs will also be there in full force. I won’t be entering in 280Z just yet (plus i don’t want to spend 5 hrs there), but I’ll certainly be there to check it out. Should be a blast to see what everyone’s done with their Z cars up close and personal.

For more information go to ZONC’s website: http://zonc.org/

For photos of last year’s event, check out Z-Car Garage’s page. Rob’s got a host of photos to gawk at.

Flyer for ZONC's Annual Car Show at the Brisbane Marina

 

Spotted: White 260z 2+2

I spy with my little eye…

Ever experience getting a new car, and thinking, ‘wow, there just aren’t that many around’, then shortly after driving it off the lot, sure enough you’re seeing that car everywhere?

It’s always true that once you’ve begun to pay attention to a car, they seem to pop up. Of course if it’s a car you don’t mind looking at, that’s not quite a bad thing. Heading down the street, outta the corner of my eye, I managed to spot something about 200ft away:

Image

See it? :] Here’s a close up:

Imagehaha! A white 260z 2+2!
Since then I’ve driven by a few times and noticed it hasn’t moved at all, so though it seems to have a decent exterior, it’s probably just parked there to stay. Maybe if i have time, i’ll inquire what it’s deal is.

Spotted: White / Gray S30

Took the McKee on ramp to 101 this morning only to find a white S30 (240z or 260z) pull up behind me! A pleasant surprise! A quick wave to each other and we zoomed off in separate directions. I noticed as it turned onto McKee that it had a gray passenger front fender amongst it’s relatively all white body.

Image

Datsun Z: Playboy’s #18

No, I don’t read Playboy. But i DO read Autoblog, and they had a mention of Playboy’s 25 Greatest rides.

What do you know, the Datsun / Nissan Z made no. 18!

I’m sure in anyone’s list of greatest cars to make it into this world, the Datsun Z is on most of them. It’s just a fantastic car with great lines, modest performance, and a price tag to match (both originally and current).

Here’s the Press Release on Autoblog’s site – see if your car is on their list:

PLAYBOY COUNTS DOWN THE 25 GREATEST CARS OF ALL TIME
Ferrari GTO Speeds to the #1 Spot

Take a drive through auto history in Playboy’s new comprehensive list of the best cars of all time. Jaguars, Lamborghinis, and Porsches all find their way onto the list, but the Ferrari GTO gets top honors in The 25 Greatest Rides.

The cars range in price from $7,000 to more than $35 million and date back to the 1940s. Playboy editors Ken Gross and A.J. Baime share their definitive list in the magazine’s May issue (on newsstands and on i.Playboy.com Friday, April 20).

Following is the list of cars that made the cut:

1. Ferrari GTO
2. Porsche 911
3. Shelby Cobra
4. Jaguar E-Type
5. Mercedes-Benz Gullwing
6. McLaren F1
7. Chevrolet Corvette
8. Aston Martin DB5
9. Lamborghini Miura
10. BMW 507
11. Lamborghini Countach
12. Jaguar XK120
13. Ferrari 275 GTB/4
14. MG TC
15. Ford Shelby Mustang
16. Chevrolet Camaro
17. Ferrari 458 Italia
18. Datsun/Nissan Z
19. Chrysler 300
20. Pontiac GTO
21. Mazda Miata
22. VW Beetle
23. Chevrolet Bel Air
24. BMW 2002
25. Pontiac Firebird Trans Am

Bumper time!

One of the visual drawback to the 280z, in my opinion, are the bumpers.

They’re big, thick, and heavy. We have rising safety standards of the late 70’s to thank for that.
A very popular change up is to put on the thinner, more attractive 240z / early 260z bumpers.

There are a few options here:
1) Fiberglass / Carbon fiber bumper (new) – For those who like bright and shiny, there are several options in materials you can get for a brand new bumper. Motorsport Auto has replacement bumpers in both fiberglass and carbon fiber – $160 – $300. Fiberglass / carbon fiber is great, because it’s lightweight, but unfortunately not that strong in case of a crash. Like most modern cars, fiberglass is used as just a cover to look nice. Unlike modern cars, there’s nothing underneath here: no bar, no frame, nothing.

2) Stainless steel bumper (new) – Hop on eBay and you’ll find a company selling stainless steel reproductions of the thin 240z / 260z bumper. They’re supposedly exact matches to the original, and since it’s stainless, it’ll be at its best for corrosion protection.  But not without costing a pretty penny: at $1000 – $1400, is it really worth it?

3) Original steel bumper (used) – Every now and again people are selling their original steel bumpers from the 240z / 260z, $130 – $200 a piece. Whether on Craigslist or eBay, this is truly the best option in my opinion. Not only will you be using something more durable / original than fiberglass or carbon fiber, but also re-using instead of helping the cycle of re-producing.

So i picked me up a used steel front bumper!

Straight outta Fremont, and guy was selling his slightly dented 240z bumper for $80. A sweet grab on Craigslist if i may say so. Actually it was originally $120 if I remember correctly, and it dropped down during the course of the week. Snagged!

Safety / Mounting – These two topics go hand in hand, and rightfully deserve a new post, but i’d like to just briefly touch on the topic. Of course the Datsun 240z / 260z bumper won’t mount directly to the 280z without some modifications. Long story short, I’d like to maximize safety (and reduce extra cost) by utilizing the current bumper shocks on the car. Many people would opt to go for aftermarket brackets, but those just hold the bumper in place and offer minimal safety.

Enough talk, time to pound it out!

240z bumper - DailyDatsun.com

there’s a slight bend on the left side, where supposedly an old lady back into it

240z bumper - DailyDatsun.com

the resulting gash / dent needs to be pounded out

240z bumper - DailyDatsun.com

The $45K Godzilla question…

What would you pay for a clean, done-up-right S30 (240z, 260z, 280z) Datsun Z? $5,000? $10,000?

I’ve seen some great gems, stock styling, nice drivers for about $5k on Craigslist.
http://sfbay.craigslist.org/scz/cto/2843108575.html

 

For $10k, you get into some really nice, well kept examples:

260Z from Specialy Sales… this has been on the market for almost a year now…
or.. how about $45,000?! If you look close, you’ll notice all the differences comparing the previous examples: RB26 turbo’d engine, Watanabe ‘R-type’ wheels, ZG flares, custom gauges… but for $45k? hmmm…

 

Center Console Sunday!

 

Yesterday Kris and I spent the whole day mulling over the 280z!

First, it was off the the Pick n’ Pull in Newark. They have a 260z there, which at the time was unknown as to what condition it was in, or what parts were left… well, now we know – PICKED OVER! Some nice parts still left (temp / fuel gauges, tach, blue 240z drivers seat, a few interior panels, tail lights / bezels). I picked up a center console air-controls bezel, and two seat belts… for which the seat belts were incomplete.. so.. gotta figure that one out.

Pick n’ Pull is great – i met two other Z enthusiasts who’s whole family had Z cars (dad, son, daughter, uncle); and you get to spot a whole history of cars (datsun trucks, MGs, Ford Maverick). But the prices.. ugh.. why do they have to be so pricey, they’re used!

Kris and I got back, worked on the center console I got from whale-tail Andrew. The replacement console also had some micro cracking in the plastic in the same area as the original (must be a common failure point). Kris fixed it up w/ some epoxy and used fabric as a sub-straight for increased strength.

Ah shoot – exposing my unsightly garage…

Sanded / spray painted the ashtray – looked so nice the lady in the paper was smiling at it

Cleaned the switches – the original ones (right) were just as caked w/ 35 year old grim as the ones from the replacement console (left). Toothbrush and pointy cotton swabs (good thinking Kris!) did the trick for all the crevices.

The whole console looked like it hasn’t been cleaned… that’s where Armor-All came in – fantastic.

The air control bezel is very easy to take off – 4 screws, 3 wiring connectors. 2 screws hold in the air vents, and everything else is easy to disassemble.

A few things I didn’t notice before – the replacement console has a slot for the choke lever… and the rear defroster / seat belt light panel was cut out! So I made my own out of a computer case side i had laying around.

Spaces for the Rear Defogger / Fasten Seat Belt lights are 1.125″ x 2.75″, while the radio i measured out for 2″ x 7″.

Kris installing the cleaned up console