New purchase, first Z, seeking history | Page 4 | The Z Club of Great Britain
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New purchase, first Z, seeking history

Discussion in 'General' started by Mark Flower, Oct 7, 2018.

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  1. johnymd

    johnymd
    Z Club Member

    Here are a couple of pics showing the style of engraving and the location on a LHD car. It is directly above the servo and just above the horizontal pressing. On a RHD car it is the mirrored opposite.
     

    Attached Files:

    Mark Flower likes this.
  2. Albrecht

    Albrecht Well-Known Forum User

    Factory literature, RHD chassis number location:

    [​IMG]

    ...but, being Devil's Advocaat for a moment (indulge me...), what exactly are you expecting to find? Do you really think it won't match up with the paperwork for the car? If it didn't, it would be pretty blatant wouldn't it?

    Possible scenarios:

    *Original bodyshell with original chassis number.
    *Original bodyshell with 'transferred' chassis number (unusual).
    *Original chassis number 'transferred' onto replacement bodyshell.
    ....etc.

    Here in the UK, when a "re-shell"* is suspected, the scenario would usually involve the identity of an original UK market RHD car being 'transferred' onto the bodyshell of a cleaner/less rusty/straighter LHD car sourced from north America. There is more than one way of doing this, and the most comprehensive method is to transfer the complete bulkhead panel of the RHD car and weld it into the LHD car's bodyshell, but I have seen cars with only part of the RHD bulkhead panel transferred. In my experience, the results of such activities are rarely undetectable. Anybody who knows their way around these cars can spot the clues...

    (*The concept of "re-shelling" is not one that can be applied to these cars, as the factory did not supply replacement, un-numbered bodyshells and each bodyshell carries its own unique identity in the form of its chassis type prefix and body serial number combination.)
     
  3. Mark Flower

    Mark Flower
    Z Club Member

    Thanks for the continued help!

    To answer your question of why I’m so bothered...

    I am hoping to find the original and correct VIN engraved in the bulkhead, and all indications are that I’m now about to do just that. There’s just so many layers of paint on the car that it’s invisible so I needed to know exactly where to strip and check. I will know for sure later today.

    My concerns arose after collecting the car from auction, because a classic car specialist looked at it and raised doubts in my mind (hence all my questions earlier). There will be cleaner cars available at this money, the attraction and part of the value (in my mind at least) in this car was partly that genuine UK RHD cars are rare (anyone know how many were sold and how many still survive??) and partly the race history going back so far. I’m intending to continue racing it, in due course.

    So, having just handed over a wedge of hard earned cash for a UK RHD car and then been told there was reason to doubt it... I needed to do all I could to confirm the case and do it fast.

    The good news is everything seems to be adding up at the moment. I’d just like to find that pesky VIN :)

    Cheers
    Mark
     
  4. johnymd

    johnymd
    Z Club Member

    Alan - looks like the vin number is a lot higher on the very early cars. Do you know when they started engraving them lower down?
     
  5. Albrecht

    Albrecht Well-Known Forum User

    The answer is: from the beginning of series production...

    I don't think you should take the photo too literally. It's a shot of a pre-production car.

    The bulkhead chassis numbers were not *stamped*, as many people believe, but *engraved*. Nissan Shatai had a cumbersome machine which clamped onto the bare metal bodyshell in a set position, and the operator dialled the prefix and body serial number combination into it. The combination was then engraved by the machine and the body went off to the paint shop. I have a copy of a document from Nissan Shatai which shows the dimensions for the LHD and RHD engraving locations. I am not allowed to publish it, as it is still Nissan Shatai property.
     
  6. Mark Flower

    Mark Flower
    Z Club Member

    You boys know your zeds!!
     
  7. Rob Gaskin

    Rob Gaskin Treasurer Staff Member Moderator

    Ok Mark, I'm a bit relieved to know I'm not the only one advising you to check things out.

    Where in the country are you, we may have someone near to you who could help.
     
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  8. Albrecht

    Albrecht Well-Known Forum User

    I saw a video from the auction house which misidentified the car as a "Series One", pointing at the vented tailgate as evidence. Clearly wrong. Your first post here showed you still believed it to be a "Series One" car, so you clearly bought a car that was not what it was being described as, and not what you thought it to be...

    As I've pointed out further back in the thread, you might not want to dig too far. Especially not in public. If you're going to race the car, then what can the digging achieve? *If* you found that it was an LHD body that has had an RHD identity swap, would your plans change?
     
  9. uk66fastback

    uk66fastback
    Z Club Member

    The depth of knowledge of some members on here is fascinating! I love learning about this kind of stuff. Whether I retain it is another matter.

    Do any records exist or is knowledge known about the HS numbers (in terms of what did they start at) which came into the UK - were other RHD markets designated just HS?

    Is the low(ish) figure on this car indicative of one that might have come in 'early'?

    From my brief association with these cars, and therefore knowledge of, I believe there are other differences in the rear interior panels which can point to an original LHD bodyshell, yes? (If the bulkhead has been changed)
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  10. Rob Gaskin

    Rob Gaskin Treasurer Staff Member Moderator

    I understand this but IF it's not as described then Mark may not have bought it so could he reclaim his money? I'm assuming the onus is on the person who described the car to the auction house? However I have taken notice of a few auctions in the last couple of years and they cannot be trusted to describe a Datsun Z or it's history accurately.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  11. STEVE BURNS

    STEVE BURNS
    Z Club Member

    If it helps the chassis number that was on Andy,s car when first owned it was 0000957 according to an article he wrote back in winter 1989
    I will try and scan it in and put up here

    Oh and it was red back then and raced with number 38 on it
     
    Mark Flower likes this.
  12. johnymd

    johnymd
    Z Club Member

    I guess seat belt pockets or signs that they have been removed would be an easy way to quickly check if it was an import shell.
     
  13. STEVE BURNS

    STEVE BURNS
    Z Club Member

    report by Andy on the 1989 HSCC season

    Andy stanford 1989.jpg
    stanford race report1989.JPG stanford racing report 1998 a.JPG
    stanford racing report 1998 b.JPG
     
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  14. uk66fastback

    uk66fastback
    Z Club Member

    What a great story. So, bent 'chassis'. But the car was straightened on a jig and lived again ... unlike the Honda probably.
     
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  15. Mark Flower

    Mark Flower
    Z Club Member

    Ok... so we’ve finally found the VIN, in the right place on the bulkhead, reading the correct numbers and engraved in that same distinctive font! Phew! I’ve also heard from Andy Stanford about the repairs that were completed after the accident.

    So all appears to be good.

    As was surmised above my concern was in verifying I’d bought what I had been sold, if you know what I mean. Had it been a converted LHD or whatever I would not have bid what I did, and I would have had grounds for a fight.

    But as I say, it all checks out once you know where to look and dig deep enough.

    Appreciate all the help!!!

    I’d still love to gather some 1980’s HSCC history on the car if there’s anything floating around out there and I’m still keen to know UK RHD numbers if anyone has any insight please?

    Cheers!!
     
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  16. Mark Flower

    Mark Flower
    Z Club Member

    As I understand it the bulkhead back was fine, but clearly it needed a small nose job!
     
  17. 8658kv

    8658kv Well-Known Forum User

    Or you could remove one of the rear wing inner panel/trims, you could easily then see if the car originally had the American sidelights on the rear quarter.

    I have an hpi report for the car, this shows an anomaly ( Caution against the vehicle id, think it's easily rectified ). If You want a copy PM your email address.
     
  18. STEVE BURNS

    STEVE BURNS
    Z Club Member

    Mark if you want I will scan in some more reports from Andy and Vernon Taylor etc also Andy car changed to number28 and was also sprayed blue and white
     
  19. Albrecht

    Albrecht Well-Known Forum User

    That's the kind of data you might think a dedicated marque/model owners club might have, isn't it?

    Apart from UK market, Japan got three distinct variants of 'HS30' prefixed Z models (1971 through 1973), as did Australia and New Zealand. A few went into South Africa, Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong too.

    It's a pretty low serial number for an official UK market car. I myself had one in the 900-range (my very first Z, now long gone) and it crosses-over with the body serials on some of the AUS/NZ market cars.

    Back in the early days of HSCC racing for Zs, there was a requirement that competing Zs be 'early production' in order to be eligible in class. It was - mistakenly - thought by some that all S30-series body serial numbers were produced in parallel, so a 'low' number indicated 'early' production. It didn't. The first 'HS30' prefixed RHD Export market type cars were manufactured by Nissan Shatai well before the end of 1969, but Nissan then left a gap and started fairly minimal production again in early 1970, concentrating on bulk production for the Japanese domestic RHD and north American export LHD production (they couldn't keep up, basically). When the Nissan works rally team brought the first batch of (RHD) works 240Zs over to the UK at the end of 1970 (for the RAC Rally) almost nobody over here had actually seen a 240Z on the road. Proper imports of UK market cars started in 1971.
     
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  20. Albrecht

    Albrecht Well-Known Forum User

    That's the 1989 crash repair accounted for. Another 28 years to go...
     
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