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jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/10/20 2:27 a.m.

The car has been a know commodity for years.  You know the kind.  Driven on only the nicest days by an owner that always see you looking at the car when it drives by.  My only previous exposure to the mark was many years ago when a friend ended up with his Grand Fathers '65 " Fairlady", he could really drive that old car.   To that end, this one will also be a "driver".

The car has been painted once, at least the side that got flatted on a trip to San Francisco.   With that, the car will never again be "perfect".  Now, I can focus on just building a fun old car.  The fact the total production of all the versions over it's entire production run was less than one year of the production of the MGB, in one year, makes for some challenges.  But there is support for these cars.

After pushing the car outside, the car did not run, the inevitable "where to start first" begins. 

The first step, get it running.  In this case, the car had only been sitting for two years.  But to play it safe the plugs were pulled and WD-40 was added to each cylinder.  First the motor was turned over by hand and then spun by the starter to build oil pressure. And it worked.  The car is again a runner, driving will be next on the list.  After the clutch hydraulics are renewed and or replaced.

I might have found what had ended those drives that the previous owner craved.

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/10/20 9:06 p.m.

The car has some miles on it.

That would be 136604.  Yes the tack needle is missing.  Does anyone have a spare?  Or the early distributor, from a 1967-1968?

Yes, the 1970 smog motor is an issue.

 

chandler
chandler PowerDork
9/11/20 5:20 a.m.

That's a good looking car, I sold mine partially because of parts availability and partially because the deeper I looked the worse the rust was. Your looks to skirt that issue.

TurnerX19
TurnerX19 SuperDork
9/11/20 7:31 a.m.

Well cared for 136K is just broken in. Good metallurgy in these.

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/11/20 9:17 a.m.

Very excited for this build!

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/12/20 7:24 a.m.

During the beginning of a project like this it feels a bit over whelming.  We you realize just about everything needs a bit of attention.  One of the systems that looks to be in good order, electrical.  Yes, every thing as to the lights and turn signals is working.  The car is ready to prove that in this instance, it will not be "British".

In one instance it might be, it is seeping oil.  Starting with the differential.  So the rear end is being dropped out of the car, pictures to follow and the cleaning/rebuilding will begin.

Now I will admit the goal of this adventure is to end up with a car to compete in our local SCCA Autocross series.  On a local basis we have a very active and competitive group that run in a "Historic" class for thees older cars.  The SCCA HCR and HCS have been reviewed and at this point not adopted.  So on this build, the car will be limited to "HS" preparation.  To that end, no LSD for the third member.  Turn's out a Quaife third member is available for the car, but the class will not let me spend the money, at this time.

Got to have rules.

 

 

Sweet ride, man! These really should have been the Miata of their day in terms of production numbers. All the goodness of the BMCs with Japanese build quality. 

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/13/20 7:57 p.m.

Starting with the differential, the "refresh" begins.  The weeping pinion seal is oiling the pumpkin, that helps to ruin the gasket at the Banjo.

Pictures are better than the description.

Next, an affirmation that this car has lived a sheltered life.

Then the delivery, of the pumpkin.  That will be cleaned and then ready for it's close up.  It's been a long day.

 

pinchvalve (Forum Supporter)
pinchvalve (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/13/20 8:02 p.m.

I hope the tach needle didn't drop down into the carbs! 

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/13/20 8:04 p.m.

That, would be a journey. 

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/18/20 1:45 a.m.

E-bay surfing has paid off, I found a replacement tach for the car.  As with any project there is the inevitable learning curve, given the low numbers of cars produced there were many differences in both the year of production and the model available for sale.

The first round of replacement parts has also arrived, now the rebuilding, begins.

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/20/20 6:36 p.m.

Deconstruction and removal, of the frozen smog pump is complete. 

The no longer needed air injection hardware becomes the next issue.  The parts to cap and remove the hardware end up looking like the attached photo.

Next, the distributor needs to be rebuilt to reflect the pre-1968 specs.

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/24/20 12:10 a.m.

Yes, no pictures.  The first round of parts is going into the car.  What is the unintended consequence of this activity, is what you find that also wants to be updated.

In this case, it's the clevis pin of the clutch pedal.  One might be tempted to fine a bolt and nut that fits the hole but no, that's not how this car is going to be "repaired".  

No, the correct pin with the grove for the clutch spring, will be ordered and installed.  One must have the correct "pedal feel", right? 

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/24/20 9:11 a.m.
jr02518 said:

One must have the correct "pedal feel", right? 

berkeleyin ay!

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/25/20 6:36 p.m.

Seats.  In a roadster.  The options, are limit...less.

First, what is in the car was modified so the "tiny" previous owner could drive the car.

The head rests are correct.  Everything else was overstuffed to get the driver up on the wheel.  So what should they look like?

This is a good reference photo for a number of reasons.  Yes the seat back should have side bolsters, as well as the seat bottoms.  More importantly, the seat should slide all the way back to the rear seating shelf as above.  Mine were reluctant to budge, at first.  One seat is again moving on it's rail.  So far.

Next, is a seat that I would like.  Might not happen on this iteration of the car, at this time.

But I am going to ask,  what if...

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/25/20 6:59 p.m.

Yes, these might be a copy of a British carburetor.  But they are definitely produced, not in England.  The amount of carbon in these is epic.  The number of potential vacuum leaks, unknown, times 2.  This is fun!

 

 

 

dherr (Forum Supporter)
dherr (Forum Supporter) Dork
9/26/20 8:00 a.m.

Love the old Datsun roadsters, I also don't quite understand why these did not become the Miata of their day as they were much better than the average MG or Triumph. Following!

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
9/26/20 8:24 a.m.

In reply to dherr (Forum Supporter) :

Easy - the 240Z showed up.

Nissan made the 240Z and Roadster in 1970 then shut down the Roadster production line to make more Z's on it.  

noddaz
noddaz UltraDork
9/26/20 6:20 p.m.
Datsun310Guy said:

In reply to dherr (Forum Supporter) :

Easy - the 240Z showed up.

Nissan made the 240Z and Roadster in 1970 then shut down the Roadster production line to make more Z's on it.  

Now there is a "what if".  What if Nissan had capacity at that time to build both cars.  indecision

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) PowerDork
9/26/20 7:32 p.m.

Are these better than, say, a TR4?  Seems pretty comparable.  The MGB in most forms does seem weak in comparison to a 2000 Fairlady.

jr02518
jr02518 HalfDork
9/26/20 8:42 p.m.

The world of 1967 to 1972 was Vietnam.  Cars like this were at best a diversion from world politics and music that was selling escape.

Much like today.

 

 

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
9/26/20 9:11 p.m.

In reply to noddaz :

I think in this era there were a bunch of 2-seater roadsters so the Datsun didn't stand out too much.   When I first saw the Miata at the 1989 Chicago Auto Show it felt like except for the Alfa ragtop there weren't any low cost 2-seaters.  

TurnerX19
TurnerX19 SuperDork
9/26/20 10:07 p.m.

Awkward styling details and in the 1960s there was still a big anti Japanese sentiment to overcome. TR4 is the closest match in performance and handling, but there is nothing as visually awkward on the TR like the tail lamps on the Datsun. Also in the beginning they tried to market the Fairlady name here, and it was only 1500cc. Straight line performance weaker than an MGB until the upgrade to 1600.

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) PowerDork
9/26/20 11:11 p.m.

Agreed.  All cool stuff.  I think this is a neat project.

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