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Thread: Budget Build My Velo Rossa

  1. #21
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    At this point in the build, doing the bodywork was getting old. So, I turned my attention to cleaning and repairing the Z's systems that I would keeping.

    The front hubs got sandblasted and painted.

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    Before and after pics of the front brakes and suspension. New rotors and calipers, and a little paint goes a long way.

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    Here you can see that the strut housing has been shortened. I cut out about an inch and welded the housing back together. This is necessary to allow the front to be lowered enough to get the right ride height and stance. The housings now hold new 280ZX struts.

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    The rear cleaned up nice too, and contains all new brake cylinders, springs and shoes.

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  2. #22
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    Engine and Install

    The engine for this build is SBC 350. It was purchased from PickNPull about seven years ago for my son Nick's Lemans. He did the tear down, inspection and overhaul. A set of high performance GM heads, originally used on the '67 SBC 327 were available, so he installed them along with the Edelbrock Performer intake. Nick sold the Lemans before doing the engine swap, and I bought the 350 from him.

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    The engine sat on the engine stand for several years. In September 2010, it was time to install it.
    I was lucky to find a WC T5 transmission cheap at a Sacramento wrecking yard. Mated to the 350 and sporting a set of Sanderson block hugger headers (I splurged and got the ceramic coated) we slipped the whole thing and secured it in less than 30 minutes. The "Jags That Run" mounting system, made by Stealth Conversions, makes the install pretty much fool proof.

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    Added an HEI distributer, Edelbrock 600 CFM four barrel and a used alternator. Looks like it always belonged there.

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    Last edited by Fauxre; 03-31-2012 at 11:10 PM.

  3. #23
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    Having purchased many new parts for brakes, suspension, transmission and engine installation my cash flow slowed to a trickle for the VR. At times like this, I turn to inexpensive, yet labor intensive jobs.

    The original Z dash was in poor condition. But since all the gauges look good and still work, reusing the whole unit will save me some dough.
    In addition to major cracks, the black coating was so brittle it would give way under moderate finger pressure. I decided to cover the entire piece with a layer of fiberglass cloth. The glovebox door was warped and ill fitting, so I decided to eliminate it altogether.

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    The result was a hard surface that isn't perfect, but looks good in red primer.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    Used the same technique on the center console.

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    Don't need an ashtray... but how can I cruise without cup holders?

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  5. #25
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    Still short on funds, I continued on to modifying the openings in the bonnet. After seeing several of these cars at shows, it became clear to me that the vent holes just aren't deep enough. Extending the surfaces inward gives the car a more finished look.

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    I started with lower round vents. I used an empty plastic potato salad bucket as a mold. A few layers of fiberglass mat and I have the basic shape. A little filler, a lot of sanding and some primer later...

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    I cut up a couple five gallon buckets to make forms for the sugar scoops. Held in place by a couple of screws, I coated the seam area with ss fiberglass filler, then covered them with fiberglass cloth. The flexibility of the plastic molds and forms, makes them easy to remove, even without coating them with a release agent. They just pop right out.

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    I ran out of the light gray primer. They still need a little finish work to hide the seam.

  6. #26
    Senior Member Bottlefed's Avatar
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    Wow looks like there was alot of work going into the dash and center but the finished product looks great..

  7. #27
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    even though you dont have the funds, this still is one of the greatest builds going on right now, amazing!

  8. #28
    Senior Member darkprince's Avatar
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    I must say, This is not a car I would ever build. But The work and craftsmanship that is being put into makes me not only respect the builder and his talent, but I have great respect for this car now!

    Keep up the great work!

  9. #29
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the positive comments. As a novice, it's very encouraging.

  10. #30
    Senior Member Fauxre's Avatar
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    More mods to the front end. I originally mounted the headlights on the outside of the scoops and covered the light hardware with trim ring. The Z did not come originally with these rings as the light was mounted behind the body panels... only the small retaining ring was visible. The rings in the first picture came from a MGB and are not attached in any way... they're just resting on the headlights. Figuring out how to attach the trim rings seemed harder than just moving the lights behind the fiberglass.

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    I started by glassing in four L brackets to the back of each headlight scoop and enlarging the hole. The new brackets move the headlight back approximately 3/4" .

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    Using aluminum foil as a release agent, I remounted the headlight and filled the uneven gaps with more ss fiberglass.

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    A little sanding and I have a perfectly round hole. I'll trim out a couple notches to access the adjusting screws before final paint. This looks much cleaner to me than the old trim rings. I'm planning on painting the scoops silver and using headlight covers, giving the impression of a single sealed unit like more modern cars.

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    Last edited by Fauxre; 03-31-2012 at 11:18 PM.

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