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G1en's 80% race car 20% show car build


G1en
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**WARNING** The following scenes contain a chronic case of Zeditus, this infection has no known cure. If you find yourself spending money you can't justify and lying to the other half, the chances are its also too late for you.

 

Right, with seemingly 1000's spent over the last 14 months I thought I best put up a build thread to document it all, I bought my 350z HR in Feb 2016. I had 10k to spend on a second "weekend" car and after looking at various options I came to the conclusion that this was the best bang for buck. I also love the look of the 350, much more than the 370. I borrowed 6k for upgrades at the same time which is when I got in touch with Mitz at the cougar store. The smart side of my head says I should have bought a newer 370 with the 16k but after reading all the build threads and upgrade threads on here I decided to stick with the car I like more and make it better, a 370 beater in fact.

 

I had been looking since December and after being beaten to 4 previous 350's I couldn't wait around for ever so bought what was a very average example of an 08 plate. No mods, what sealed the deal was the leather seats were in very good condition and it had a full dealer service history meaning that the previous 3 owners probably didn't abuse it. After seeing a few with bolsters caved in, my whole decision on this car was sold on the seats, that probably sums me up. I always forget to take pics at the right time so only pick I have when I collected it is below showing that I got the approval of my daughter to boot.

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Anyway, onto the mods, I will try and do this in some kind of order. So as I said, Cougar store was the very first port of call and Mitz and Andy have now had the pleasure of my company at least 6 times, prob more. The first thing was a full P3 service inc new belts, plugs, and all oils. Mitz also showed me the condition of the belts and plugs which had never been changed to date, just shows even a fully stamped service book doesn't show the whole picture.

 

Then it was booked in for the start of what would be a never ending wish list emptying my bank account faster than my Nigerian Prince Uncle who just needed some funds to initiate my inheritance. First on the list was a cat back Cobra exhaust system, new DBA T2 discs, Hawk Pads, Braided brake lines and Eibach Pro street S coilover suspension.

 

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The coilovers are a mid budget offering but are stainless steel bodied so should in theory withstand what the british roads throw at them, they are adjustable in height, I have them set at maximum height which is still around a 25mm drop, but they are fixed damping so it doesn't give me any chance to f+*k up the handing. After driving on them a year now I can recommend them to anyone thinking of going coilovers. The exhaust transformed the sound of the car as anyone will tell you, the brakes didn't give me any noticable improvement over OEM but at least I wasn't planning to track the car.....yet

 

After the work above, it was best to get the geo sorted and this is where I realised the limitations (almost none) of oem alignment. As the car had dropped the camber was more negative. I decided to buy adjustable rear arms and toe bolts (again eibach) but couldn't justify the 450 quid or so of front adjustable arms so left them, it may be something I do in future but after years of playing forza and Gran Turismo in my head some negative front camber is always good. The shots below show the first alignment check, after the coilovers then after the rear adj arms. It is running around -1.3 all round now which seems to suit me and I am happy with. At some point in same period I also got the eibach front and rear anti-roll bars installed with whiteline drop links, again at the cougar store.

 

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Its at this point, my recollection of what was done when goes a little hazy, in a whirlwind of sex, drugs and blowing money on the zed. (minus the sex and drugs, well there might have been some sex, my wife is expecting our second child, unless its something to do that personal trainer that comes round every day when I leave for work or the window cleaner I pay every month but never have clean windows...hmmm.) anyway I had ordered as part of my original 6k upgrade budget a set of new wheels from Adrian at Torqen which had to be ordered in from Japan. They were SSR GTV02 in phantom silver. I had a month of back and forth e-mails with Adrian as the colour wasn't available, then the size, then the width, anyway I think in the end they made a set for us, the colour has since been superceeded meaning that these could be the only set in the uk! they are flow formed so fairly light, not as light as the rays but only a kg heavier I think and they are 18x8.5 22off fronts and 18x9.5 22off rear which is what I wanted for the oem+ look. a more visually appealing look but without compromising ride and handling. This is when they arrived.

 

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Before I had these fitted I have forgot to mention, the car came with the GT4 wheels on but with these being too heavy for my liking I bought a set of rays from Rickdon on forum to use in the 3 months or so before getting the ssr wheels. My original intention was to keep them as a second set but with little room in garage and funds running low I sold them onto another forum member. I only have one pic with them on the car and its below when me and the brother climbed the Yorkshire peaks on a glorious day. When I pulled into the carpark, the attendant said, wow, stunning car mate. Makes you love the zed even more. Just remembered I fitted a zunsport front grill which I think transforms the front end look of the car.

 

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Back to the wheels, when funds allowed I kitted them out with what's commonly known as Ekona approved rubber. After reading enough threads to realise I didn't want to be on the receiving end of one of Dan's verbal bashings, (no offence intended) I got the MPSS booted up and on the car. I also had the skirts resprayed and the rear arches rolled and resprayed, there was the start of a little arch rust on lips so needed doing anyway. turns out I probably could have got away without rolling the arches even with 275/40 tyres but its all done in case I go wider or more aggressive wheels in future. 245/40 on fronts for info.

 

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I don't know how long a post needs to be before computer says no, so I will continue this on next post, If you are still reading, please take a good look at yourself, even the Cats looking at me in disgust as I type this, but seriously, thanks for reading, part 2 to follow shortly.

 

ps. Thanks to Dan for helping me figure out why the pics would not load and helping me out

Edited by G1en
update pics due to photobucket
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Part 2

 

So, realised from the last pic I had forgot about the stickers, most people will tell you a good sticker adds around 2hp so not wanting to chav the car up too much I added as many as possible on the rear quarter glass, 4 each side meaning the placebo effect was 16 extra hp and boy can you feel it, anyway, moving on, the next visit to cougar store was booked in and I wanted to address the cooling as these engines do get very hot so anything to aid cooling and longevity must be a plus. I had a mishimoto rad fitted along with samco hoses and a mishimoto rad cap. I also got a z-speed undertray courtesy of tarmac sports I think which replaces the rubbish oem offering.

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Then Torqen had one of their sales they like to do, and I had been looking at oil coolers for a while so when the mishimoto one came up at a great price I plunged in, then decided it was time for me to get my hands dirty and fitted it myself. Suprisingley it was fairly straight forward. It bolts into existing holes in front of the other rads, the braided lines and fittings are easy to connect and so is the sandwich plate, the only extra work involved is cutting part of the plastic undertrim to run the hoses round but all in all very easy, no leaks and I was proud of myself. It was around this time I started considering doing track days in my own car rather than experience days I had done previously. Its all good spending money upgrading a car but if its never put to good use it may as well have stayed standard.

 

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I think we are upto middle of last year now and around that time I decided to pop my 350 show cherry. I booked for the Japanese performance show in Coventry for September on the 350-uk stand and quickly decided I needed to do something about the "non showroom condition" car I had possession of. I started by tackling the shoddy interior plastics we all know and loathe. I wish I could say the orange rear strut bar cover was the work of a blind man but alas, no, I had done it a few weeks after purchase to match the alezan seats but I know realise why the local graffiti mob didn't even want me. anyway, I can safely say they are all looking much smarter now, no new pics i'm afraid, i'm not that stupid, you will just have to take my word for it. I also ventured for the first time into the world of detailing so got myself a da polisher with pads and polish recommended by the forum, it really is a wealth of great information, and I set about either smartening up or destroying my paintwork, it was a 50/50 gamble I was willing to take.

 

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Over the next couple of months there were a few niggles to sort, the windscreen washers stopped working, front and back at the same time but thanks to forum yet again, they got sorted, I replaced both pumps and everything is now working as it should.

 

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Then because its a weekend car and if its raining it doesn't get used the battery had been struggling for a couple of months until it finally said no more. I got a shiny new bosch S4 from euro car parts. It was still the original battery after 8 years so it had done a good stint.

 

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The interior lights are the usual yellow rubbish so I bought a set of led's to modernise it a little. side by side below if anyone needs convincing a what difference a £5 bulb can do.

 

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Then I ordered in from Japan a nismo gear knob as the original was looking a bit worn, realy like it, not the best feel I must admit but looks better then oem.

 

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Then with my first show around the corner, thought I best clean up the engine bay a little, I know how people like to stare at engines and even though I had no bling it still needed to look loved.

 

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So off I went to first show after spending half a day polishing as many scratches out of the zed I could, unfortunately its a 2hr drive down from Yorkshire so it was never gonna arrive pristine, I used what fast detailer I had and cloths to clean it up but then Shezza turned up beside me with his pristine freshly detailed beauty and made mine look like a turd on 4 wheels. Anyway he did tell me the difference between ibisu black and kuro black, mine has flakes in so is never gonna look as deep and glossy as kuro, thanks for making me feel slightly better. Aside from that it was a great day with tons of jap cars on show in the main hall and in the stands warehouse where we were. A couple of pics I took of mine, it does look shiny in the pics so the polishing was not in vain.

 

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So that takes us upto the back end of the year when I was thinking new seats time. More to follow

Edited by G1en
update pics due to photobucket
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Thanks G1en for a very interesting read, that's how I like to spend my Saturday mornings reading stuff like this ðŸ‘ðŸ».

 

 

However, I think I can safely say that you haven't got Zeditis mate - not a stubby Ariel in site 😂

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Part 3 Continued.

 

So it was the back end of 2016 that I decided the best way to get the most out of the car was a track day or 2. And what better place to start than the worst possible place to start! The green hell aka Nurburgring. Go big or go home yeah. So I spoke to the brother who had just bought a new MX5 and we set on a date of 18-22nd May which would give me enough time to fingers crossed get my bonus from work and upgrade the car a little more with dedicated track day upgrades. Hotel and ferry tickets were booked so I knew had had something to look forward to.

 

Back to seats, the common issue with the OEM seats is lack of support and no matter how determined you are, when you start sliding sideways in the seat it takes your attention and focus away from the car and corner. So off I went to GSM at Nottingham to try a few out. I was gonna dive right in with the ones I liked the look of best but thank god the forum spoke to me and said make sure they fit right first. Sound advice and I would stress for everybody to try before they buy. After sitting in a dozen or so the one that seemed to fit my body shape best of all was the buddyclub racing bucket seats. They just hold every part of the body snuggly and are perfect size as well as only 5kg each! So after numerous failed phonecalls to GSM I went direct to buddyclub uk and ordered the seats with the buddyclub sliding rails. On the lowest setting they are the same height as OEM seats, I even soldered in the airbag restrictors, again thanks to guide off the forum and no lights on the dash, success.

 

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I am the first to admit, they are not the best looking seat on the market, but they do compliment the interior nicely and its much more function over form. At this point I removed the boot weight, spare wheel and sold the oem alezan seats to another forum member. Total weight saving around 50kg.

The final mod done before year end was a set of mishimoto air intake hoses, These are a real pain to fit as they are designed for the 370 so need a bit of cutting but they are slightly bigger diameter, look better and fit in with the rest of mishimoto stuff in engine bay keeping the oem+ look.

 

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Other things I have completely missed are:

Stubby aerial from tarmac sports, first purchase, how can I forget?

K&N panel filters from ebay. ordered 1 thinking a pair would come but only 1 turned up so ended up costing me twice as much

Cobra hi-flow cats fitted at same time as MOT in November at cougar store, she sailed through with no advisories! The hi-flow cats add a great (I think) rasp at 5k+ revs but keeps the V6 rumble upto that point

New genuine car mats

Dyed handbrake lever black to match rest of interior

New rear led light from Clarke Motorsport to replace cracked unit

Superpro poly bush kit for front end to replace the poor oem bushes

 

The zed went into hibernation for Winter, coming out a few times to keep the juices flowing on nice days, until March when I met up with Mitz to give him my shopping list for the ring, and booked in for 1st April. He messaged me to say it would be a 3:30 am start. But this was no April fools joke, at least I hoped it wasn't. The thought of driving 90 miles in the early hours of Saturday morning then sitting there whilst drunken couples were pro-creating over the zeds arse wasn't a pleasant thought but sure enough, the garage was open for business, not sure Mitz will be doing 24hr opening moving forward though....

 

So the list of work included:

Kaaz super-Q 2-way limited slip diff, thanks to Andy james for selling me his old diff so it could be built in advance. I have my old one available now for purchase if anyone wants to go down same route. New whiteline poly diff bushes to be fitted at same time:

 

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A New Xtreme SMF complete clutch kit with new slave cylinder and braided clutch line with high temp clutch fluid. Another kit highly recommended by traders and it gets my seal of approval, I always thought my clutch was high, but everyone says its a trait of the zed and because it never slipped I lived with it. But when the old clutch (still original) came off Andy said there was very little life left in it and the new xtreme kit has a much lower pedal bite, just what I wanted as well as improved response and another 5kg or more weight saving. win win, the chatter people complain about is none existant if you have an aftermarket exhaust system, the exhaust noise is louder than the clutch so I can't hear it.

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The final major thing done on the day was the brakes. I never liked the Hawk ceramic pads, think I had the standard type. They didn't fade but never gave me bite and grip needed if an emergency situation arrived so not wanting to fork out of discs as well (the DBAs seem fine to me) after reading up I plunged for some carbonne Lorraine RC6 pads all round with a friction coefficiant (don't know what it realy means) of 0.5 or greater all way to 1100c and beyond. What I can say is they are night and day compared to the other pads I have used, Slam on and you are nearly through the windscreen, the abs is kicking in at silly speeds. Definitely what I needed for track work, the only drawback is the high squeal at low braking speeds, this would be too annoying for daily use but as its not my daily I can live with it for the sheer superior performance. Warning, these are not cheap, around £400 set I think. Final things done on the day were high temp brake fluid, Titan race oil, new specific kaaz diff oil and new oil filter with mishimoto magnetic drain plug.

 

 

 

I also took the chance to give the W-brace some tlc whilst the car was off the ground. Everyone knows these must be made from the cheapest Chinese steel a bowl of rice can buy you. And mine was no different, the pic below looks bad but it is all surface rust in pic sanded off before it was cleaned and painted with hammerite primer, then satin black topcoat. The structural integrity of the brace was sound but bearing in mind mines an 08 plate with 65k on clock, if you have never bothered to take a look at yours it def will need some attention or poss replacing.

 

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Pic below of the zeds second home, I was contemplating putting All fours garage down as where the vehicle will be kept on the insurance as its spent a lot of time there over last 14 months.

 

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Around beginning of March, Andy James organised the Japfest 2017 stand at Silverstone so as I saw the stand filling up I got my name down and purchased the tickets. Cant wait to see another 80 or so Zeds all in the same place and meeting some more fellow Zeditus sufferers to share the highs and lows. If there are any volenteers with shabby cars, you are welcome to park next to mine, my beauty is all under the skin! Thought I would treat myself to some new detailing goodies to use before Japfest, building up a nice collection. I realy do like the G-Technic stuff, everything I have used seems top quality, i'm sure some detailing experts on the forum may have other suggestions and they are better placed than me but personally can't recommend them enough.

 

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So that brings me right upto April 17. The final piece in the jigsaw, a re-map. Part 4 to follow

Edited by G1en
update pics due to photobucket
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Part 4 Continued.

 

An uprev at some point was always on the cards, to make sure everything was good, eek out some more performance and introduce multiple maps along with pops and bangs just because we can. I missed the first h-dev group buy mainly because I was in the process of having the work done so jumped on the band wagon with the second group buy. As always its great to meet new faces and the 400 miles round trip should hopefully be worth it. I was sat in traffic all the way home (7 hrs) and was stop start crawling at 5mph for a good 2-3 hrs. The cooling upgrades I have done came into full use and although my feet were as hot as when you walk barefoot on Egyption sand, the engine temp never went above halfway on the gauge and the clutch never faultered, good to know ahead of the drive to Germany.

 

Onto the dyno result, made 302hp on base run then 313hp after the mapping so although not fantastic results its now kicking out the same as a brand new version and I don't think HRs get the same gains as DE's normally. Obviously torque has improved as well and I now have multiple maps with the option of launch control to add on.

 

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Pic below of car at Horsham, the Old fiesta lurking behind is apparently used for drag runs kicking out 550hp. my first ever car was a £50 fiesta 1986 year kicking out 50hp over 4 speed box but you couldn't select 4th or it died as the power had gone, you couldn't go over 3k revs or the radiator would go and I used a tin of white spray paint every weekend covering the arch rust, those were the days.

 

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So we are now set for Japfest and the ring. I thought I best purchase one of these just in case I get over confident at the ring and star in the next youtube video of top 10 crashes. It serves a dual purpose, protecting my head, but more importantly my shame.

 

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So there we are upto present, just ordered a 380 pedal from Torqen which should be hear next week, got a few more stickers to maybe put inside. The hotel at Nurburgring was booked as a 3 bed apartment as there was supposed to be a work colleague coming but he has dropped out so there is a spare bed if anyone fancies a trip over in the Zed, won't even charge for it, if interested PM me and I will give you details, be great to have a forum member with us, likewise if anyone is there weekend of 20/21 May get in touch and we can possibly meet up.

 

Have also got my name down for the advanced driver day at Millbrook which should be a great day, hopefully car is still in one piece by then, kind of doing everything the wrong way round but what the hell. Ploughed loads of money into car before I really know what I need, booked the most dangerous track on the planet before having any training/experience, booked training last. Will certainly be doing more track days second half of year though and hopefully meet some of you guys and get some tips/advice.

 

Also booked for the Jap performance show in Coventry again for later in year.

 

Big thanks to :

 

Cougar store

Torqen

Tarmac Sportz

Clarke Motorsport

Horsham Developments

The forum

Edited by G1en
update pics due to photobucket
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  • 1 month later...

Next up was japfest at Silverstone. Great to see so many zeds together in one place. In true blond moment i got 3/4 way down with Rickdon, we stopped at services and i realised i had forgotten all my tickets.

I had to blag my way in, luckily i have my yorkshire charm and moderate good looks to fall back on and the lady said as long as i have my stand pass permanently on show on my phone and displayed it in the windscreen i would be ok

Yeah right....

 

It was a great day, the drifting on show was awesome and some great cars too. I also managed to fit a 380rs pedal just before. Pic of my car at the stand below:

 

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Edited by G1en
update pics due to photobucket
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Update 21/05/17

After japfest the next milestone for me and the car was Nurburgring. Me and the bro had booked for the weekend and i sit here writing this with beer in hand after a great lads weekend away and the 350z still in one piece with no armco souvenirs to take back to the UK.

 

For anyone contemplating a trip to the ring i will say this. I have 4 laps left on my ring card and i am already planning what b**lsh!t excuses i can tell the wife to get back here this year. My first ever lap of the ring should have been a tranquil sight seeing mundane cruise around.

Oh No, not this fella, crash helmet on, car checked over, I floored it out of the chicane onto the straight and this guy was about to show Shabine Smitz just how the green hell should be driven.....

 

4 corners later and a sharp left hander after the grand prix circuit entrance and i was on the grass. I quickly learnt that 80mph on forza means jack sh!t in the real world. You would assume i quickly learnt my lesson. Self note.. never assume, a few corners later and i was squirming all over the place trying to brake from around 100 to 50 in 2 seconds. I luckily just made the corner.

At this point i realised the laps on forza were meaningless, yes, they prepare you for what way the track will turn next but they dont give you any feel for the cambers, vast inclines/descents, bumps and compressions in the road and numerous other things that lie in wait at every given moment.

 

Aa well as looking what is coming up, you have to keep one eyeball on whats coming up behind as no matter how fast you think your going there is always a 911 coming at you at a rate of knots. So i backed off and drove at the 7/10ths rule to learn the real track. The end of my first ever lap was a mixture of adrenaline, relief, excitement and brown marks in my underpants.

 

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This was a saturday afternoon on a tourist weekend with great weather so you can imagine the amount of cars on track. I did another couple of laps pushing when i could but more often ending up in a train of slower cars or pulling over to let the hardcore racers through but using it wisely to learn the lines and speeds of corners. So onto Sunday am

 

The plan was to get up early, do 3 laps in the morning and 3 or 4 in the afternoon with sightseeing inbetween. We were up early, headed to the track and got on for around 9. The plan was to time each lap to give myself an idea of where i was. But the first lap, went for the phone and siri came on, how can i help? Pi55 off siri i need the stopwatch at which time i was on the straight and it was too late. So i did a good lap, warming the tyres and breaks nicely and everything felt good. Finished and reslised there still wasnt that many on track so went straight back out and started the stopwatch...

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I started the clock at the end of the cones, not realising everyone does a BTG time, and I stopped the clock when past the gantry slowing down on main straight so the true BTG time was around 8:40. The time was pleasing to say its my first timed lap and only 5th lap ever. I did another lap but as so often on tourist days you get held up everywhere. The timed lap, I had around 1/3rd track clear run then held up 3 points, there is certainly a lot more time to be had, I was bottelling it at 125-130mph on the fast sections.

We then left cars to cool and visited Nurnberg castle overlooking the ring and GP circuit.

View of the GP circuit

 

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View of opposite side towards Adenau

 

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We then went the ringwork museum which is part of the GP ring setup just down the road. One of the many cars on show.

 

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Then back to hotel. We are in the An Der Norschlieffe hotel near Adenau, excellent spot right next to the track, has its own ring entrance/exit and viewing spot. View from hotel balcony below

 

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The plan was then to leave it late and go out when quiet but i thought the track closed at 7 same as saturday. Nope it shut at 5:30 and there was a crash at 5pm so I couldnt get anymore track time and we head back tomorrow morning. I certainly leave wanting more.

 

Onto the car, as you can read in the thread, i have upgraded various bits and all in all the car coped with the ring superbly. No drames from the car all weekend, just the idiot with balls too big for his jeans driving it. I will try to give some feedback on various parts from my experience and limited knowledge.

 

Tyres. I am running mpss all round. I set the cold psi at 33 all round. This was low and there was some rollover on cornering but the grip was imense. I am running at -1.3 camber all round and the tryes held on very well. It was a warm dry weekend which helped but once they were upto temp there was very little sideways action, just the slight squeel as i pushed round corners. After coming off you could see the blistering on the outside edges which to me means i could do with either higher starting psi or more camber or both, just for track use obviously.

 

Kaaz 2-way LSD. This bit of kit is immense. For someone like me to set about the first lap ever with tcs/sc turned off and still have no sideways moments speaks volumes. It was left off for every lap, you can literally turn in and as soon as you unwind the steering plant your foot down on the loud pedal with no dramas, again, this is in the dry, i dont have any wet experience bit will report back when i do.

 

Carbonne Lorraine RC6 brake pads. Again a massive thumbs up for these. Without these I am 75% sure I would be writing a thread starting "I've crashed my zed" just a note to say I also have Dba discs, braided lines and high temp fluid which all works in tandem but the pads never faded, I have a load of pad fallout on my nice wheels but its a small price to pay for mega stopping power

 

Eibach pro street coilovers. My initial thoughts are these are perfect for the ring with the bumps and compressions. They soak up most things well but i have to admit, they would be too soft for circuit days and smooth level tracks. The lack of any adjustment (i bought them for this so i couldnt mess up) means you are stuck with a great fast road setup and they are very good for b roads but lacking for hardcore race use.

 

Eibach anti roll bars. I think mine are set too soft. They have 3-way adjustment i believe and I definitely need to set them stiffer, combined with the soft tyres meant i did get a little body roll although the tyres did hold on, the good thing is they can be stiffened and even the setting now is stiffer thsn oem so a definate must buy for anyone wanting to push their zed.

 

Buddyclub bucket seats. As i have stated before the support bucket seats give is incredible. It keeps you focusing on the road and not keeping yourself on the seat. Doesnt matter which brand you get, get the one that fits your body shape or if it doesnt, hit the gym.

 

Re-map, clutch, Fly, Exhaust. I have nothing to compare these too track wise but as so many me, the extreme clutch and SMF is a great next stage upgrade to oem, more feel, better clutch bite, most aftermarket exhausts are better than oem, love the sound of my cobra and the re-map moulds everything together. The fact I never even thought about throttle lag, gearing etc at any point must mean things were working well.

 

And there you have it, the one downside i would say is the car did feel heavy, it is realy, it was noticeable in the body roll although i can eradicate some of this as mentioned above but its got me thinking about carbon goodness. Rather than FI which if i am bricking it at 125/130 on straights do i want to be going 150/160? and also the big brake kit you would need to go with it. Do i spend my next dosh on seibon panels? I have already lost around 60kg from the seats and removing the spare wheel and boot weight, lighter improves everything right. Also need to think about next tyre choice, as its weekend/ play car do i get track tyres, choices choices

 

Next update will be CAT advanced driver training day booked through the forum in July cant wait

 

Need to get back to the ring after and use up these laps....

Edited by G1en
update pics due to photobucket
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Just found a youtube video from the Saturday of me in the zed with what might possibly have been my first ever lap of the ring. Skip to 8:18 behind a merc and 2 beamers all black as well. Its on the approach to the carosel. Just putting it in my build thread for easy finding. I did spot a few other zeds whilst there although only one uk plate. A white 350.

 

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So having just done the Performance driver training with C.A.T I can highly recommend it to anyone wanting to learn more about their car, their driving and how to get more out of both. If you read the dedicated posts you will get a real flavour for whats involved but needless to say, a great day all round and it really did hit it home to me just what a great capable car the 350 is. So capable I had Paul who put up with me all day constantly telling me to slow down and learn the techniques and processes involved rather than gung ho-ing it at every chance. sorry Paul. I did make it upto him by winning the end-of-day shootout dispite leaving half of my rear tyres at the start line.B)

Pics below of the great set of forum guys who were on the day with our cars.

 

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In order to ensure a Zed won the day we made the R32 tow the trailer around :lol:

 

Other bits I have done recently include a rear wiper delete, sprayed the rear strut brace cover (again) in red, and swapped the crappy rusty exhaust clamps for nice high grade st/steel jobbies, look much better.

 

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The dreaded EML light has come on yet again so really need to get to bottom of that although car starts & drives perfect. Someone on forum mentioned the throttle controller might be the issue, I cleaned it last time and the light has stayed off for a month so may do it again but clean the contacts as well and reset it again. Also have a sidelight out so purchased some xenon style osram side bulbs, need to fit those and may, if I get time during my paternity leave (may be wishful thinking) get the car up on the axel stands and give the girl some form of underbody paint/rustproofer/sealer/wax etc.

 

Also, due to the noise of the cobra, and other mods, its not really a GT car anymore so seriously thinking about stripping the interior out and losing some more weight. It would just ruin the overall OEM+ look of the car, but I suppose it can always go back in, in the future.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Update 11/08/17

had the last 2 weeks off on paternity after birth of baby Mason so i killed the time between nappy changes and being sick on to rust proof the car. Word of caution for anyone wanting to do this. It took me best part of 3 full days to do everything mentioned below. So to start i purchased the following kit from bilt hamber at £60 and the tin of por-15 at a whopping £35 but it gets rave reviews. 

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onto stripping the car down. I removed the front bumper, zspeed undertray, plastic cover underneath front subframe, arch liners, rear lights and rear bumper and side skirts. I didnt realy know the procedure but if you just keep undoing bolts and pulling out clips eventually you get there. I did manage to break 3 of the side skirt fixings but luckily theres enough left to suffice. 

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I noticed a few little marks/spots of rust around the car, nothing too serious, mainly where parts had rubbed and worn through the paint. An example below you can see where the rear light sits there is a 3/4 inch line of rust. 

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All these bits i sanded and touched up with primer and kuro black paint. Now my cars ibisu black but Halfords didnt have that so as all these bits are out of sight it doesnt realy matter. 

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Then it was onto using the por-15 rust prevention/ rust eating/ rust buster expensive black paint. I wire brushed the underside of the car on the parts that were rusty. Realy it was only the front and rear cross member / subframe parts. Not sure what the correct name is but it definitely looks like either a previous owner had done some undersealing or it is very well protected from factory. Whats that i hear you cry, the W brace! That must be rusty, well yes and no, it was but as you may have read from earlier in the build thread, i had already painted that with hammerite. Didnt stop me putting a coat of this por on though for good measure. You can see from below the por dries a satin/glossy black. It was a good job i got underneath the car as one of the connections on the oil cooler hose had worked loose and oil was weeping out so that was tightened up as well. 

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I then used the por-15 stuff on the arch areas where there were signs of rust. Mainly around the spot welds. 

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I even re-glued the vents behind the rear bumper. Ocd was kicking in and you can now see why it took so long. 

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It was then time for the dynax stuff. Now in the kit you get 4 cans. 2 of S50, and 1 each of UB and UC. Now what the F is all that about i hear you cry. Well I said the same thing so I had to do the one thing all men hate and detest. Yep I had to read the instructions. After breaking into a cold sweat I gathered the info that;

S50 is for cavitys and areas away from impact, UB is for underbody and high impact areas, UC is similar to UB but dries clear so is better for seen parts where you wouldnt want a brown/black coating. 

So off i went. The S50 was squirted into the arch crevices and anywhere there was a hole underneath the car (insert rude joke)

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The UB was then sprayed on the underside where i thought it needed it. Like I mentioned before, it was pretty good anyway and i could not see a lot of the steel as it was already coated in something but the subframe got a blast as did the W brace for good measure, that W brace must be rot proof for at least 50 years now with the amount of stuff I've put on it. 

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Then i used the UC for the wheel wells, underneath the skirts, and rear shell. The first pic shows it wet and it has a glossy almost laquer appearence but it does dry almost perfectly clear as you can see from the other pics. 

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Sideskirts, very good condition anyway, bits of rust starting at rear where they stop for rear wheel. 

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and rear of car behind bumper, again in very good nick. 

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Then it was onto putting everything back together and finding out either how many screws and clips i had lost or how many i had left at the end that i couldn't find a home for. The job, although taking a while had been going well upto now, only snapping 3 clips but the eagle eyed among you will spot the damage in the pic above but below is a close up. I left the rear bumper unattended, went inside and when i came out the wind had caught it and blown it onto the painted side against tbe driveway resulting in this:

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1week before the JPS show in coventry so i will get the DA machine out on max setting but it will need a respray at some point. I may have a car on show where the underside looks better than the top!

 

moving on, even though you never see the inside of the skirts I thought while they're off I would give them a clean and boy did they need cleaning. 

 

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Then before the arch liners went back on, I coated them with some G-technic tyre and trim stuff which brought them back upto almost new. 

 

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and back in the wheel arch

 

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and finally all the bolts coated in copper grease and everything bolted back together. I have ended up 2 clips short that tie the top of the front bumper to the car. Think they are a 10mm push clip. There are normally 6 required and i have 4 so if anyone has a couple lying around I will have them off you. 

 

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So that about sums it up. A very lengthy but rewarding job. £105 for materials that could in theory save thousands if you keep the car long enough but i reckon it would easily bring its money back come sale time if you can prove the works been done and the cars been looked after and cared for. 

 

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Its the bottom one in the pic Stu. I have put the smaller one in the pic to avoid confusion. They smaller ones are used all over the car to hold various trims and pieces in place. The larger ones i need are not so common and as i said its what holds the top of the front bumper to the car. 

IMG_0798.thumb.JPG.8fbadcccf46f37cbdcd5bd725a6b6a26.JPG

 

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Update 11/08/17 part 2

 

whilst the car had all the bits off and it was such a faff removing everything I thought I would help bring the zed into 2017 with the help of some LEDs. With it being a HR it already has the led rear brake cluster and xenon headlights so the rest of the bulbs were letting it down. 

 

This is what i purchased online for £70 after checking the definative bulb list on here and double checking the actual fitments I can confirm these are all correct to replace the rear indicators, (amber x2) rear fog and rear reverse light (white) rear number plate (white x2)

and side indicators (amber x2)

 

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Now in my usual fashion, I bought these and fitted them only to find out that my indicators now blink at 300 times a second. Hyperflash I believe is the common term. This for all you other novices is due to the leds drawing less power and having less resistance than standard bulbs. The car thinks a bulb is blown so flashes fast as a warning sign. It might also be because the resistance is less resulting in a faster flash. I lost interest reading online. Anyway the solution is either to replace the flasher control module (easier but not possible on a zed as it doesnt have one) or wire in resistors to the circuit. 

 

So after more searching i found that people use 50w resistors at anywhere from 4ohms to 8ohms. So I purchased some at 6ohms from Amazon, only £8 for two. You need one per indicator. You dont actually need any for the number plates, reverse light or fog light as the are constant on or off. The resistors come with wire attached and splices to cut into existing wires but as i already had a solder gun and solder wire i wanted a more permanent fix. I also read that some resistors burn out over time so people put connectors onto them so its a quick change over if they do. I decided to do this and took a trip down to maplin to buy 2 male connector blocks, 2 female and a metre of each red and black 1mm wire. 

 

I stripped the cable on the existing indicator wires and cut approx 400mm of wire i had bought then soldered together, wrapped in electricsl tape and put the connector block at the other end of the 2 wires which uses a crimp type thing to hold the wire, pic below

 

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You have to mount the resistors to metal as apparently they can get very hot and melt plastic so i found a perfect spot on either side of the car shell behind the bumper, connected the female connector block to the 2 wires and secured with a 18-25mm jubilee clip. I added a thin layer of foam behind the resistor just to cushion everything. Think it looks rather neat. 

 

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You can then connect the male and female connectors together when you re-install the rear bumper and there is plenty of slack on the wires. Pic below. Just to note: it does not matter which wire from the light you connect to which wire from the resistor, and people also said that leds only work one way round in the fitting, I had all mine work 1st time round then took them all out, fitted resistors and they all worked second time so dont think it makes any difference. 

 

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and finally tested all ok. This shows the indicator in bright daylight which was still impressive so should look awesome at night. 

 

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The other leds as I mentioned before just swap straight over. The side indicators housing needs to be released from inside the arch so needs the front liner off. All in all very impressed and indicators now flash as normal so can confirm the resistors are correct. Anyone wanting to do this as i have will need:

Leds as 1st pic (approx £70) online/ebay

1mtr red 1mm wire, 1mtr black 1mm wire, 2no female plastic connector blocks, 2no male plastic connector blocks (approx £15) Maplin

2no 50w 6ohm resistors with splices £8 Amazon

2no 18-25mm jubilee clips £3 Halfords

 

optional: solder gun and solder, backing foam, electrical tape. 

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  • 1 month later...

Forgot to post up after Japanese performance show at Coventry in August. Great day with the club. Lots of amazing cars like last year and great talking to everyone on our club stand. 

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and also saw my next car (wishful thinking)

might not be ro everyones taste but love the retro vibe. 

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Also started my own business venture you may have seen from another thread. 

Waxandshine.co.uk

you too could have a car as shiny as Shezza!

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  • 5 months later...

Not updated in a while so here goes, its been a very frantic 6 months or so. Another addition to the family, setting up my own business and keeping a full time job as well as my wife being made redundant. Anyway back to the Zed. In November @Rob350 organised a meet and drive out round Clitheroe and surrounding areas. I think there was 10 350/370s to start with and it was a  great chance to have a blast although the roads were very wet/icy/muddy so senses were at full alert, the afternoon session was much more free flowing and we could give it some beans when temperature had increased slightly and roads were a bit drier. A few pics below, should have taken more but most cars were caked in mud and road spray so didn't look their sunday best.

 

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The following day I decided to give the Zed a wash and use some of the new products I have started selling. A pre wash snow foam, then washed (gtechniq gwash), then clayed, then Carchem PTFE polish followed by Carchem hydrocoat. The hydrocoat really does add a nice shine as you can see in the second pic, wing coated, bonnet not coated, or maybe it was the light, either way the car looked great when it was all finished.

 

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Then sometime in December I think @davey_83 mentioned how he had purchased a c-tek charger for over the winter and thinking that mine may be stood for a few months, I took up the recommendation and purchased one of these:

 

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Now they come with 2 types of connector as in pic, the clamps and the eyelets. This is a great idea as I have screwed in the eyelets to the terminals and because they are wired to a connector block that has a rubber sealed end, you can just leave it hanging in the battery compartment area so no faffing around next time you want to connect it and it still leaves the clamp connections spare for use on another vehicle. They are a great piece of kit for around £60-£70.

 

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That was it and Christmas come and went and onwards and upwards into 2018. The Zed has been sat in the garage and being stood there got me thinking about how I can get more use and enjoyment out of her this year. I went to this last year and watched Kieran from the forum in his 350z flying up the hill.

 

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This is Harewood hill climb and so the plan began to compete this year. Now the technicalities for anyone wanting to do this, just to note, I am booked in for a practice day end of March then the first event is in April if i get in, so until they scrutinise my car I am still a little in the dark but a few things I do know and have had to do to the car are listed below with pics where relevant:

First of all, you have to apply for a Sprint non race  B Licence (no actual test and cost around £50) then become a member of a club, I joined BARC Yorkshire so I could compete at Harewood (Leeds) (again around £50) The more types of licence you apply for or clubs/regions you join obviously will cost more money each time, as far as I can tell when you compete in events you can get your licence/card marked and after several markings you can then apply for an A licence which will get you into ore prestigious events and so on...

 

Then for sprints or hill climbing your car has to have a front and rear tow eye/strap easily accessible and marked so you need to be pulled out of the gravel or a ditch, a high probability knowing how I drive once I don a helmet! so I picked up a rear tow eye off Ebay and a front tow eye from Adrian@torqen The front screws straight in, I used some ptfe tape on the threads so I could get it tight and pointing the right way otherwise the only way to have them straight is leave them loose which is no good. Just for info, the bolts that came with the rear epman tow eye were not long enough for the Zeds rear tow plate to bolt through so I had to buy some longer ones, 50mm M12, the ones supplied I think are 40mm, and you have to remove a piece of the trim to fit it, as far as I can see it serves no function anyway, other than to shield the frame from road spray/grime.

 

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Now the eagle eyed amonst you will have noticed the 2 screws protruding from the number plate, this is because you have to attach a timing strut at a specific height to break the timing beam at events. It just so happens the number plate with a bracket attached works out to be the perfect height and luckily my number plate is metal so attach a bracket the attach the carbon fibre timing strut. You can make a strut out of anything really but hey, I treated myself to the first bit of carbon on the car (about £30)

 

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For the regulations you also have to make which way you turn the ignition off and mark the battery earth in yellow so here it is:

 

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The final thing car wise is a White square or circle on each side of the car to display your race number, I havn't done this yet so that's the next step, still unsure whether to add and race livery or not at the same time and go proper race car!

So onto your own personal protection, You have to have an approved race suit, gloves and helmet. So I booked a day off work and made the trip to demon-tweeks at Wrexham. Full credit to these guys, I literally spent 2 hours there trying on various suits/boots/helmets and the chap serving me was very patient and offered good advice and recommendations. I ended up buying a Sparco starter set if you like, its the Sparco Sprint RS2.1 suit together with the boots and gloves and the Sparco Pro RJ-3 helmet. Total cost was around £850 

What I can't stress enough is don't buy off the internet, I reserved a suit from demon tweeks as they only had 2 left, I went by the size guide but when I tried it on it was much too tight and I ended getting my suit which was 2 sizes bigger, also between brands there is a difference, ie the OMP suits were a bigger fitting so a 58 in OMP is like a 56 in Sparco etc.. definately try before you buy.

 

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I have also purchased a gear lever extension to make the gear changes easier and slicker

 

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In other news my trusty old BMW 320D decided over the winter period that the M-sport suspension was not low enough for it and it must have been envious of the low riders out there that one very cold morning the front springs snapped leaving me with no choice but to get a company car, so the Audi A3 was welcomed to the stable, and the BM was swiftly sold on facebook to someone that works for BMW. It didn't take long before I was glad of the company car as the recent snow (pic below just because?) I skidded down a hill grinding the kerb as I went more or less destroying the alloy wheel, thank the lord it was not the zed as I think my wheels are not even made anymore.

So Bye Bye

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Welcome:

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Welcome or Not Welcome still undecided:

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And Last but not least, The mod that everyone wants, proven to add 15bhp and 25nm torque as well as look cool, the forum sticker:

 

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Thanks for reading, already booked for Japfest and the jap performance show so will see some of you guys there. don't forget the website for all your detailing supplies, I will have Bilt Hamber products available very soon, will announce it in the trader area shortly.

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  • G1en changed the title to G1en's 80% race car 20% show car build

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