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Discussion Starter #1
I want to buy my first Z and am looking for some advice. I have found a few adds for almost running Zs and think that I want to buy one. My idea is to buy a good condition shell and a bad condition car and combine the two to make one functioning Z.

The bad condition one is this

The good condition shell is this

I have confirmed that both are still available and am going to try to get the bad condition one for under $600. The bad condition one needs a new carb/intake installed and the tires are shot. The good condition shell has had some more stuff done to since the original post. According to him it is "currently completely disassembled with no window no body pans no doors no Interior and it’s on rotisserie and it’s it’s getting soda blasted this weekend ". I don't know how much to try to get the good condition one for.

I was thinking that I would buy the bad condition one for its interior, windows, and the rest of the working parts fix the engine and slap the soda blasted shell doors and bumpers.

Bottom line, Is this a good idea?
 

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If you can get the first one for $600 go for it. It’s really hard to give you great advice because I can’t see all the details on the cars. With these cars it always comes down to body condition, how much rust and where. Rust repairs will empty your wallet fast unless you have metal working skills. L series engines are pretty easy to find and relatively affordable to rebuild, so don’t worry too much about that. S30 Z’s are coming harder and harder to find. I’ve been watching the market for 3 years. 3 years ago I saw lots of cars for sale, today I rarely see them. For $4500 the 240z may well be worth it but in pieces it’s really hard to see what you have. All the little stuff to put these back together can get expensive or impossible to find. It obviously has rust because he’s go new floor pans coming with the car. Are you going to weld those in? If the floor pans were rusted out I’d be concerned about other rust like frame rails. Without that information I really can’t tell you if it worth the $.


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Discussion Starter #3
I was considering welding in the floor pans myself. I know how to weld, just need a welder, but you need a welder for restoration projects anyway right?
 

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Depends. One of my former professors restored a 65 Mustang after he retired. The guy had never wrenched so bought tools and books and started learning. He had someone local to do body work when & as needed. The prof said he got up every day and went to work on the car until it was done. Then, he sold it.

If you want a Z to drive, Buy the best condition running car you can afford. If you want it built your way AND have time AND money for parts and tools, proceed on your current path. Remember that is is easy to take a car apart. A Z can be stripped in a day or 2. Getting it back together will take longer - maybe forever.

If you get these 2 cars, leave 1 together until the body is fixed on the other. Then, start swapping parts. Restoration shops build the car mechanically then take it back apart to paint then put it back together. How far do you want to go?
 

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The visible rust on that 73 would scare me, I would not call it a "good condition shell".

It all depends on what kind of Z you want to end up with. If you're looking for a Road Kill style Rostsun, I think these two cars would be a great start. If you're looking for a great looking, rust free, respectable Z; I think you would need to expect a long, expensive process. There's nothing wrong with a long, expensive process (I'm in the middle of one with my 280). Just make sure it's something that you're ok with. Like Av8ferg said, everything else needed to make these cars safe and looking good will be expensive.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Ok if it is not a good condition shell I will keep looking. The ones I could find that were being sold as a shell all look pretty bad. That was the nicest shell I could find. Maybe I just need to look farther out from me.
 

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It took me over a year to find my car. Just be patient but ready to jump at the same time. I agree that it’s best to find the best condition car you can afford. For me I have a passion for building stuff so a restoration is right for me. If you are waiting to drive
It in 3 months, find a fully built car and pay the higher price. It’s cheaper to buy a already fixed up car than fix one up yourself. There are endless stories of guys biting off more than they can chew, know what you’re getting into and be patient.


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I have been thinking and I think that it would be dope if I built the car myself. I found a Z that from what I can tell has little rust. However, the interior is missing and the add is a bit confusing whether or not the other panels are still available. Is this one better for a beginner restoration?

 

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I want to buy my first Z and am looking for some advice. I have found a few adds for almost running Zs and think that I want to buy one. My idea is to buy a good condition shell and a bad condition car and combine the two to make one functioning Z.

The bad condition one is this

The good condition shell is this

I have confirmed that both are still available and am going to try to get the bad condition one for under $600. The bad condition one needs a new carb/intake installed and the tires are shot. The good condition shell has had some more stuff done to since the original post. According to him it is "currently completely disassembled with no window no body pans no doors no Interior and it’s on rotisserie and it’s it’s getting soda blasted this weekend ". I don't know how much to try to get the good condition one for.

I was thinking that I would buy the bad condition one for its interior, windows, and the rest of the working parts fix the engine and slap the soda blasted shell doors and bumpers.

Bottom line, Is this a good idea?
OK, first of all be REALLY careful and think about what you want. I am saying this because I have just started down the rabbit hole of a full ground up restoration on my Father's 1972 240Z. What I have found is that the parts that you will need, especially the electrical parts like the headlight/windshield wiper stalk and the turn signal assemblies are EXTREMELY difficult to find and are outrageously priced. What makes things so expensive is that there are huge variations in these parts between model years. You want to rebuild the 240 by using parts from the 260, just be aware that many of the body parts will be compatible but many of the electrical will not without major modifications. For example. I am going to rebuild my original windshield washer/headlight stalk assembly to use as a future spare and I bought a NOS (New Old Stock) assembly for a '73 240Z because it was the only one available, there were no '72s, the lettering on the switch assembly is the same as the '72 but the wiring harness and connectors attached are different and will need to be modified by me in order to use them. (I think part of the reason is that the '73 added intermittent wiper functionality among other things) I have found places that will do restorations on your existing switch assemblies so that is an option as well for you if you don't want to mess with them. Light assemblies are also expensive and the wiring harnesses between the two cars will be different as well. I am modernizing many of the systems within my car which will require me to completely rewire all of my wiring harnesses. I am stripping apart my dashboard at the moment and itemizing what wire colors and gauges I need to order to do the harnesses in the dash. I will be replacing all my gauges with new ones from SpeedHut which will require new wiring. My speedometer will be GPS based rather than cable based off the transmission. An Another issue is the schematics. I'm finding them difficult to read and to match up to what is currently in my vehicle and so again, I am creating my own to match the wiring that I leave alone as well as the wiring I add and the wiring I modify. There is a company online called Vintage Connections that sells all the correct connectors and even a complete set of everything needed, except wire, to rebuild your harnesses. One other thing. Rebello Racing is currently building me an engine using a L28 block bored out to 3L combined with my original '72 L24 higher compression head so the current L26 engine that is in my car at the moment (my Dad replaced the original L24 with the L26 when he wore the L24 out) and that I will be removing shortly is available. It will start and runs fine but the carbs need tuning badly. I will have no need for it once I get the built engine and I would just as soon see it go to someone who can use it rather than just scrap it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you. I think that I need to relax and find better a quality car that will be more conducive to my level skill set. I am a beginner so a full ground up build does not seem right for me. Maybe I would be better finding a car that runs with much less rust, and work on the basics first. Something that still needs work be not as much work, you know what I am saying?
 
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