Miracle_Max New Reader
9/4/19 9:50 a.m.

It's probably not good for buying psychology to make a build thread for a car before you go and look at it.

Oh well.

I'm hoping to pick up a 1981 280ZX in the next week or so. It's an N/A, 5speed, 114k miles, looks like minimal rust (lol not). Paint is, well...multiple colors, but at least it runs and drives. The price is probably going to be $1300 (ended up being $900), which seems pretty average. Not a steal, not a ripoff.

The idea is basically to have two daily drivers:

First, the car I actually have. A 1990 Volvo 760 Turbo. ($900)

Its a decent car. Currently straight-piped by mother nature. For some reason, despite having a number of problems with it, I don't actually hate it. It's moved me to 3 different houses. It'll be my primary daily while I get the Datsun more roadworthy.

Anyway, that's it for now. I'll keep y'all up to speed as things progress.

mikeatrpi HalfDork
9/4/19 6:21 p.m.

Sweet!  You'll like the zx... And be lusting for a turbo soon.  Welcome!

Daylan C
Daylan C UberDork
9/4/19 6:28 p.m.

The fun with hoopties is their either nearly free to run or a car payment on a new Versa would be cheaper. Best way to do it is have 2 or more.

GoLucky Reader
9/4/19 7:32 p.m.

 Turbo Volvo powered Z? Might be fun. 

Miracle_Max New Reader
9/13/19 2:23 p.m.

Well, I got it.




Interior parts and the front fenders in the back.

In keeping with the title, I've made my payments to Amazon, Advance Auto, and Rock Auto to get this thing on the road

  • New Clutch (on hold): Current one does not disengage all the way. The master and slave are new (according to PO), so I'm going to look at the pedal and see if the adjuster is off. My guess is that the PO (kind of a sketchy guy with a sketchy "shop") didn't bleed the system properly. But a new Exedy is $100, so I might do that.
  • Brakes: Pedal hits the floor. Haven't even looked yet where/if its leaking, but I've got pads and rotors on the way.
  • Fluids: Engine oil/filter on the way. Redline MT90 on the way for the trans. Power steering fluid is gone, so I'll be figuring out where its leaking from and putting some ATF in.
  • Shifter bushing: mine feels all but non-existent. Flops around like crazy. I've been seeing different styles though, so I'm going to pull it apart before I order.

A lot of what's left is elbow grease. I need to bleed the brakes and likely the clutch, or at least adjust the clutch pedal. I've got to put the body panels back on, and put the interior together, and see what else there is. I'll get some better pictures once the body panels are on.

Miracle_Max New Reader
9/13/19 2:25 p.m.
GoLucky said:

 Turbo Volvo powered Z? Might be fun. 

I've pondered what you're pondering. The 6 cylinder sound is pretty good though...

Miracle_Max New Reader
9/13/19 2:26 p.m.
mikeatrpi said:

Sweet!  You'll like the zx... And be lusting for a turbo soon.  Welcome!

Yeah, I can see that lust coming. The L28 feels great...for now...and for an N/A...

Miracle_Max New Reader
9/14/19 10:55 a.m.

I got a chance to get the Z up on jack stands. That in itself was an interesting process. EVERYTHING WAS CRUSHING. I'm talking right now to a company about getting new floor pans and frame rails for this car. I also just noticed that the car has the remains of two New York inspection stickers...that makes a little more sense than a NC car. 

Rust is clearly going to be the #1 issue on this car. I'm still not 100% sure how I feel about that. Obviously, it would be nice if I didn't have to deal with this rot, but on the other hand, saving a car from rust is...well, really saving it.

Anyway, time for more pictures. Bear with me, I'm using a very old digital camera which is marginally better than my phone.

I dig this red interior.


Now for the ugly.


There's  a similar hole on the other side of the car.



Awww E36 M3.

This I don't mind as much.

Sheet metal. Who cares.

That's the most severe rust. Most of the fasteners and lines seem okay.

Okay, so after I got it on stands and pulled the wheels off, I was greeted by this:

Yeah. There are no pads. None. They're gone. I was also replacing the brake hose on this side. It was finger tight. I have a sneaking suspicion where my leak was coming from.

I'm going to see if I can make this caliper work, but I anticipate the bleeder busting off.

The brake fluid was super low, so I anticipate having to bleed the MC. I've never done one like this, but the dual chamber seems like it might make it easier, no?

And most importantly:

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