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Discussion Starter #1
And I decided I don't like the ride. I much prefer the ride of my 86. It really surpised me because I always liked the looks of the 90's Z cars, and bought the 86 only because that is what I could afford at the time. The 91 is a much stiffer ride than the 86, more like a Camaro. I love to drive the 86, and thought I would love the 90's models even more.

Now I have to decide if I want to invest the money in the 86 to make it all it can be, or give up on the Z's altogether...

The rust I am starting to see could measure up to some big bucks. I have no skill in doing bodywork.

I already have over $3000 invest in the car for parts and labor in less than a year, and that doesn't include the $2100 I paid for it. There are still plenty of old parts that are going to wear out and need replacing. It might be time to pass this one on to someone more mechanically inclined than I am and get a newer car.

It is nice not having a car payment and the insurance and taxes on this car are real cheap. There is always the hassle of breaking down somewhere and needing a tow, and the downtime of not having the car while it is being fixed though.

No rush, it's running great right now! :)
 

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That's the thing about older Z's - you really need to work on them yourself to not feel guilty about the kind of money you will have to invest. These cars are 20 years old and many of the parts have done their time and more.

I've done all my own work, here are 5 years of savings:

Clutch: $170 (clutch plate, pressure plate, throwout bearing, resurfaced flywheel)
Waterpump and Timing Belt: $50
Maxima Alternator: $85
4 Oil Changes per year: $30
Original Purchase: $1200

I hope you are able to keep your 86 - remember that you own it and aren't making $300 car payments on it!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That's the thing, no car payments, but repairs are averaging $350 a month plus downtime. I guess its got to end somewhere, but where?

I am thinking about taking the car to the shop and having them make a list of all parts that might wear out soon, and prioritize them on whether they are likely to strand me.

Then I will just replace everything that is likely to strand me at once, then work slowly through replacing all the lower priority parts. At least this way I could budget for it, and get some idea of the amount of money I need to invest in this.

Then I got to look into repairing rust and getting a new paint job.

The more I think about it the more I want to do it. Convincing the wife its a good way to go is a whole other issue...
 

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TOTALLY understand yur predicament man! I put quite a few thousand dollars into my Z (including stock color paint w/7 coats of clear to protect it from harsh winter weather in WA), and got married in the thick of it all, too! But let me tell you, the final product (when done right) will put a smile on your face and give you the pride that NO ONE can take away because this once delapidated mess has become eye candy that others will take notice of and remember (seeing that the Z31 isn't the "norm" for custom cars). I started with an '85 n/a coupe that I knew NOTHING about except that it had a V6. I ended up with an '85 turbo coupe that put camaro's and mustangs in place while maintaining an appearance that would put showroom models to shame! So if at all possible, keep what you have, and finish what you started. It'll be worth it, trust me
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the feedback!
 

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I dont know why you guys have so many problems with your cars.. When I got my 86' turbo about a year and a half ago, it was pretty beat up in the suspension and in dire need of a tune up, No interior, two colors, and the springs had been heat treated to lower the car to its belly. I replaced teh springs and bushings, put in a radio, and gave her a tune up. Now its been one of the most reliable cars i've ever owned. The only down time was for about a month while I put the suspension together. Great car!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Its possible that many of the parts that are wearing out on our cars were already replaced before you bought yours:

timing belt
waterpump
belts
radiator
speed sensor
alternator
master and slave on clutch
plugs and wires
front struts
front-end alignment
muffler

still needs:
reverse switch leaks oil from transmission
new lights in climate control ( bought lights, need to install)
rust repair
paint job
leaky t-tops ( seems to come and go)
front-end shakes a little when speed reaches around 75-80. Almost feels like it a lifts up a little then starts shaking. ( I had the tires balances and an aligment done, so???)

who knows what else could go next...


But I put about 100 miles a day on it during the week, and it runs well in between replacing worn out parts.
 

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Keep it!! When you get finished you'll have a NEW 20 year old car that has a **** of a lot more going for it than some of the crap out there you'd replace it with. Plus you still won't have a payment book.
I have a 84 NA 5sp. and really enjoy driving and tinkering with it.
 
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