Bill project 72_repost

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wrs1
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Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 31 May 2012 22:00

I am going to start this project thread over as much of the early work to my car was lost when the site lost the gallery around 2006 or so. Please bear with me, as I have an existing project thread and this thread describing the same build. At some point this thread will catch up to the original thread, and at that point I will delete the original thread. Until then I need the old thread to refresh my memory.......this has been (and still is) a long project!


So without further delay..........

It was my wife's idea.
She saw this rusty old 510 in the Auto Trader in Winnipeg in 2004. We had just completed building our house ourselves (if you truly ever really finish such a project) and she thought I needed a new project to keep me busy. The house build took us about three years from start to finish, most of which we literally did with our own hands. It consumed every moment of our non day job lives for three years. And more than every dollar that we earned, but none the less that was winding down and she saw this Datsun.........so we went to look at it.

I am a Datsun guy. I have owned many 510's....like probably ten, and a couple of nice ones. Starting when I was about 17 or 18. I also owned a few Z cars. I also worked as a mechanic for many years in several shops in Winnipeg including one that specialized in Z cars. So I was fed a steady diet of all things datsun (and Honda, and Toyota) on a daily basis for years. But that was some time ago, and I have not owned a Datsun since the early 90's. So off we go.....I have no desire to buy a clapped out rusty old Datsun, those days are LONG GONE.

It was a mess. Manitoba had been hard on it (as it tends to be on everything for that matter). The car is sitting off to the side of the driveway, sort of on the grass, sort of in the shrubs. Very oxidized as that olive green always looks. It was rusty, floors were gone, trunk was gone, brakes were gone, doors were half gone, in fact the bottom 12" around the entire car was toast. It did not run, and had not run for many years I was told. The tires were flat, the kind of flat that has them formed to the ground and they look like they could never be round again. These are the bias ply type with huge gaping cracks in them. My wife says its "cute".

Maybe she was right. It wasn't without it's charm. It had some history. It was still in the hands of the original owner, who was a car guy and loved his 510. He bought it new from the local Winnipeg dealer in December of 72. The olive green two door with a manual gearbox, for the sum of $2400.00.
He promptly had the dealer install a tach, which cost $60.00 parts and labor (the tach was $44, $3.50 for the harness, and $.50 for a fuse holder.) After this, I assume he enjoyed the car for 94000 miles, as that was the mileage when I purchased the car from him. At some point between zero and 94K miles, the car made a stop at a well known local performance shop (and a friend of mine) where the engine received some work from John Jackson to the tune of 240Z pistons, head work, cam and springs, a lightened flywheel and a roadster clutch. I know this because there is a hand written invoice for the work, but it is not dated. In fact all the documentation for the vehicle is complete from the purchase through the life to the transfer of ownership to me. That to me was worth the whole price of admission.

But it was a mess.......and I think he wanted $500.00 bucks for this turd! But my wife thinks it's cute, and it kinda is. She keeps telling me I need a new project (like another hole in the head). So I say I'll think about it, and off we go home. On the way home we talk about the car and Datsuns of old, the good times and the bad. When we get home she plays the reverse psychology on me and says ya you probably couldn't fix that thing anyway. I said, pardon?

I bought the car September 11, 2004 for $400.00 bucks. My boss and me take his truck and a trailer from work and go grab her up. pop her off the ground with a tow rope, and winch the four square tires onto our trailer. Off we go with my new toy..remember 2004.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 31 May 2012 22:04

So I get her home, and start to take her apart to see what we have here.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 31 May 2012 22:11

Now, I have repaired rusty Datsun floors before, and I know its not pretty trying to weld in patches to that cheesy metal. So it becomes obvious to me what is required. total floor removal, the likes of which I had never done. But what the hey.....it's a dare!
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HudsonMC
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by HudsonMC » 01 Jun 2012 06:39

:shock:

That's some pretty serious rust repair.

I just went back and looked at your old thread. I'm excited to see where this car is now. Love the color.

indy510
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by indy510 » 01 Jun 2012 09:10

.
I really hope you will post as many pics as possible of the rust repair....

I was thinking the rocker panels, and the roof were the only thing holding mmy car together ....... now I have seen everything cut out

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McShagger510
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by McShagger510 » 02 Jun 2012 00:15

Nothing ventured, nothing grained! - Benjamin Franklin

'72 2dr. 510 Turbo
'73 240Z all stock
'71 2dr. 510 stock......for now
'91 Nissan truck
'78 Kawasaki Z1-R
'84 Kawasaki GPZ750 Turbo
'99 Kawasaki ZRX1100

wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 21:30

so with the floor completely removed on the driver side, I got a sheet of steel and cut out the new floor, one solid piece, and started welding, and welding, a practice to be repeated often.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 21:37

Next, I repeated the same procedure for the right hand floor, rocker, and door sill. sawzall!.
Unfortunately I no longer have photos of the cut out floor, but you get the picture from the left side. I then cut out the mirror of the drivers side replacement from my sheet and began welding.
Here is a photo of the passenger side floor after initial install.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 21:43

Now, having the floors roughed in, I turn my attention to attempting to fabricate replacement rocker panels and reconstructing the door sills.
Here is a shot of the car from the passenger side with the floors in, looking at what needs to be done. plenty O rust to go.

What is interesting about this car, and you can see in lots of early photos, the original owner had the car rust proofed immediatley after he purchased it. The process was was called Ziebart rust proofing. A very common product in Winnipeg, not so sure about anywhere else. But essentially they drill holes in the interior of the car and spray in a black petrochemical coating that coats the inside. I call it Black Death. whenever you touch it you get this tar on your hands and clothes that is impossible to get off without some sort of mineral spirits. It burns like hell when you weld on it, and gives off the most toxic of fumes I expect (judging by the headache obtained every time). So you can often see the little yellow plastic plugs in the door jambs and weird places. Also when you look at the interior panels they will all look black. Black Death!.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 22:01

So now I turn my attention to attempt to fabricate the rocker panels, and door sills.
I borrowed a home made metal brake from a friend of mine and away I go. Initially I took some rough measurements for the profile of the rocker from the old panel, transfered the measurements to small pieces of metal and began bending until I obtained a reasonable profile facsimile. Those then became my final measurements and I began to bend long pieces. I recall the brake was too small to do the full length of the car so I had to make several pieces in order to cover the length. bummer, but you use what you got.

here is a shot of some of the first attempts in process.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 22:10

This is a good shot of some of my first works and trial fitting them to the car. The rocker panel and door sill are separate pieces. I could not do all the bends necessary to make a profile that complex. It could probably be done, I however could not do it.

In this photo the rockers are being fitted, but the actual door sill is still absent. Visible for the sill is a square tube I welded in place to maintain the original door opening measurement. That square tube remained in place and gets covered by the door sill when completed.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 22:19

So before I could weld these rockers in place I needed to recreate the rear fender that was gone from the rust. I wanted to ensure that the bottom of the car "line" was consistent and therefore I needed to move to the back.

You get a sense as to the extent of the rust damage from this photo. also you can see partially in the wheel well where i temporarily welded in a patch to stabilize the flapping fender due to lack of steel in the wheel well. This was removed later and permanent strips of steel were installed. Also evident is the removal of the fender lip, as I always intended to install flares on the fenders.
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 22:23

Here you can see the extent of the surgery to remove the cancerous rear quarter. But alas, as you think you get it under control.......
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 22:25

.....another surgery is required.......
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wrs1
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Re: Bill project 72_repost

Post by wrs1 » 04 Jun 2012 22:32

so we keep moving forward, but as you look through the empty void of a trunk we can see the future..........the drivers side is still to come!

oh ya, also if you look at the garage wall you can see that panel below the tail lights that fell off. not sure what you call it, but you can buy a fiber glass replacement on the internet I heard.
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