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Fairlady Roadster - A moment of weakness...


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#1 gav240z

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Posted 15 October 2010 - 11:00 PM

So as some of you may know I've been looking for an RX-7 whilst living in Ireland. Mainly because they are cheaper than back in Australia and finding a 240z over here is next to impossible.

However this popped up the other day.

http://cars.donedeal...agecars/1629214

and it got me thinking, I always liked the Fairlady 1500, 1600, 2000 but never saw myself owning 1. What's tempted me is I think it will hold value and it's cheap to insure, register and drive in this country.

So I'm thinking I might take a look at it this weekend. I'll be the first to admit I know very little about them other than the basics and heritage though. I'm wondering what I should look for, in terms of common rust spots (I'm thinking similar to the Z).

Any good resources on the web? I want to make sure she's totally original at the current asking price. Also what are their values like in Australia right now?

I imagine they will be very similar to the 240z in terms of working on, but anything I should know about them?

I've always wanted a silver one though :) here are some cool examples I found on the web.
http://bringatrailer...atsun-roadster/
http://bringatrailer...-2000-roadster/

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#2 luvemfast

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Posted 15 October 2010 - 11:13 PM

I say do it Gav
You know you want to  ;)

#3 bluerat

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 06:25 AM

Mate go for it, they are a great little car. I've stayed away from them as I want to stay out of jail....no not speeding, I would have to kill the first little beared man who said 'hey nice MGB you got there..', Lock stock and two smoking barrells, Vinny Jones style,  head in the door!! bang bang bang.......I better calm down, I'm just heading off the the MGcc's historic meet at Baskerville..deep breath, deep beath.


#4 RB30X

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 06:39 AM

'hey nice MGB you got there..', Lock stock and two smoking barrells, Vinny Jones style,  head in the door!! bang bang bang.......


HA.

#5 Scoota G

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 08:11 AM

Make sure you get one of those scarfs like sulio used to wear  ;D ;D ... problem with wearing one of those in a Zed is that rear wheel is really close.

#6 K240z

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 08:32 AM

OMG!!! that silver roadster is insane.  in love now lol

#7 Bruce

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 09:03 AM

OMG!!! that silver roadster is insane.

+1

I haven't seen one with a hardtop before

#8 Zedman240®

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 09:11 AM

Buy it Gav! They are a great car.. Alan was kind enough to give me a drive in his red 2000..Loved it from the first second! If I find one I will snap one up too! They have a separate chassis and body but like the zed suffer from the rust monster. Alan would be good to ask for some pointers.

#9 1600dave

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 01:15 PM

I'm no guru but do own a pair of them (a '65 1500 and a '66 1600). Yep, seperate chassis so rust isn't "quite" as much of an issue as in a monocoque constructed car.

They can rust anywhere, but common points are the rear guards (both in front of and behind the rear wheels), the sills, the bottoms of the front guards, the "A"-pillar where the door mounts (especially the area where the pillar joins the sill), the very front of the sill, where its hidden in behind the bottom of the front guard and the floorpans.

The bonnet can be troublesome, both with rust along the leading edge and cracking in line with the front edge of the bonnet scoop, radiating out to the edge of the bonnet. Both the bonnets on mine are like that anyway. Also prone to cracking in the shell around the boot opening.

Originality is harder to judge as there were quite a lot of changes in their short lifetime, different engines, dashboards, windscreen setup (with associated changes to the body) and plenty more. Also, there are differences (badges, bumper over-riders present or not, lights, etc) depending on the market they were sold in. One obvious thing on the one in the ad you posted are that its missing the chrome strips down the sides of the car.

Mechanically, they are pretty basic and parts are fairly easy to obtain. The later 1600 engines (the ones with 5 main bearings) share a lot of parts with the H20 engine as fitted to many commercial Datsun / Nissans as well as forklifts (a good source of cheap parts are forklift spares places  :o).

Prices - they are still quite reasonably priced in Australia (I think so anyway). You can pick up a decent 1600 for well under $10,000, 2 litre ones fetch a bit more. Projects can be had for under $5000. My two (needing restoration) cost me $3600 for the pair.

I've only driven one - my impression was a quite small, nimble, generally "fun" car with rather vague and heavy steering (may have just been the one I drove, although Nissan decided to fit a different, recirculating ball steering box to later examples).

311s.org is a good spot to look for information.



#10 NZeder

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 06:17 PM

Get it gav you know you deserve a classic car given how long you have been over there now do it do it do it.

#11 Lynton

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 08:09 PM

Gav I have owned both a 1966, 1600 sports and a 1969, 2000 sports, both had hard tops. I always felt the 1600 sports was user friendly and an easy OHV engine to work with plus a 3 main bearing motor and silver grey dashboard and chromium accessories nice exhaust note with a nice bark, some had heaters and radios fitted as standard and some didn't. They changed the 1600 sports to 5 main bearing in 67 and dashboard was matt black and and accessories went to a frosted silver, it lost the nice exhaust note and bark with it. They both ride very hard the 1600 gets axle tramp the 2000 sports doesn't it has a torque rod tie down. The 2000 is a performance car in comparison and has weak syncros on 2nd gear. The 1600sports is city friendly and good fun and very reliable. The 2000 sports can have rattley timing chains and occasionally can drop a valve, goes like stink, have better seating. both have weak panels easily dented with elbows. The 1600 had better engineering fabrication of parts than the 2000 sports which was more mass produced with not the same under bonnet fabrication to detail but the twin Solex carburettors standard in Australia on the 2000 sports were awesome and the car was supplied with ram tubes for club sport enthusiasts.
Watch out for rust in both front guards especially where drivers mirror was originally positioned, in the boot under spare wheel and rubber matt and bottom of wells of rear guards and usual places like under carpets. The 1600/2000 sports came standard with fog lamps but they disappeared on some later 1970 models. Both have rear leaf springs that look horizontal and the cars suspension shake your kidney's out of you. Lynton 8)

#12 Lightmaster240z

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 10:23 PM

You should get it they are great fun to be in. One day of being driven around  in one in tas and it on my must have list ;D  Big thank you to Simmon dad for the ride 

#13 Six_Shooter

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 12:45 AM

I don't usually like the Roadsters, but this one has definatly caught my eye...

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#14 260Coupe

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Posted 18 October 2010 - 08:19 AM

Gav

I have owned and raced my 2000 for the past 13 years.

A few basics
As with 240s, Roaders are prone to rust so check the sills and floors and firewall.
Brakes work well (when rebuilt correctly) although un boosted............be careful of boosters added as these upset bias and reduce peddle feel.
As the guys have said the body is bolted to a ladder frame chassis so its engine and gearbox out in one unit via the bonnet .
Bodies are liable to cracking across the boot lid corners and the transmission tunnel up through the scuttle due to body flex, boot floors also crack due to the weight of the fuel tank...............so check these areas.
Pre 69 models had a worm and peg steering box with worms gears subject to wear.................so check vague steering if it is an early 2000 or a 1600.69-70 models have recirc ball steering so not as direct but not as prone to wear. Drag links and idle boxes do also wear so check for steering play.
A healthy 1600 R series engine will turn arpound 75- 80 rwkw and a good 2000 approx 95 -100 rwkw so performance is very different (go for a 2000 if you can find one)
The only shared components between a Sports 2000 and a 240z are the locks, door handles and the flange type gear box (in a shorter housing) and the rear brake drums.
The U series engine is similar to the H Engine (Urvan and forlifts) however the cylinder head is where the power is made, U series engine components can be very costly and hard to find  (water pumps, pistons, timing gear including tensions chains and spockets etc
Body panels here is Oz are very scarce and expensive, particularly grills and bumpers (2000 grills sell for $400+ USD)

I do not believe they sold Roadsters in the UK/Ireland so I can only assume any over there are Jap or US imports 

Any further questions let me know

Alan


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#15 DatPilot

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Posted 05 November 2010 - 11:13 AM

Theres a fella called Lou Mondello (i think?)
He can wring 200HP out of the H20/U20

ZZZZZZinng!

#16 Thomo260

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Posted 05 November 2010 - 11:25 AM

You should get it they are great fun to be in. One day of being driven around  in one in tas and it on my must have list ;D  Big thank you to Simmon dad for the ride

And a quick little rocket it is as well Bruce.

Theres a fella called Lou Mondello (i think?)
He can wring 200HP out of the H20/U20

ZZZZZZinng!

Lou Built the engine in my fathers car. 1600 block bored to 1998cc with 300zx flat tops and 102hp atw. He recons he could get alot more if he put Webers on it but dad being dad it just wouldn't be the same.

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#17 260Coupe

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 08:36 AM

Lou Mondello re- built my U20 10 years ago in standard config, (standard bore, pistons and cam) ...........we installed H20 rods (30% lighter than U20 rods) and lightened the crank and flywheel for better response . My U20 is turning around 135 rwhp in standard config and has been unbreakable over the last 10 years often seeing 8000 rpm on the track ! ...........His latest projects included offset ground crank 2.2 lt U series turning around 125 rwkw's.
If you are going to buy a Roadster there is no other place to take it other than the Guru



#18 DatPilot

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 09:43 AM

Im going to build a E20 Urvan, (13 seater minibus) into a cruiser/camper (sky blue blue, white roof, chrome trims, tinted windows etc)
The engine will be going got him to build for me
Although it goes ok with the 440,000km on it now!

#19 ChrisZ

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 02:01 AM

Go for it Gavin, i have a -66 1600 roadster, if there's anything you like to know about roadsters, shoot me a mail.

The silver roadster, belong to Eddie Wu, SR20 powered, let me see if i can dig up some more and post it here.

The goal i'm aiming for with my build is on the first photo below, the other photo is my frame at this stage.

Chris

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#20 DatPilot

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Posted 17 December 2010 - 12:16 PM

Standard rebuild kits are supercheap too, as they have something to do with Forklifts (Lurch may shed moar light on this...)




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