The Red Baron

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TheHeretic
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The Red Baron

Postby TheHeretic » 20 Nov 2014 17:08

The year was 1998, I was a junior in high school and for the past 2 years I had just worked 365 days a year delivering newspapers and finally saved up $1000 to buy my first car. MY dad said no V8s so that 1971 lowered Chevy C10 I saw every day was out of the question. Somehow I stumbled upon the movie Against All Odds and the rest was history. For about 5 years I lived and breathed 510s owning about 8 of them and even doing my senior project in high school on auto racing by following Troy Ermish around for a day. Was able to befriend Dean Sherman and went with him to Mt. Shasta in 2001. Then once I started having to wear suits (in finance field), having no air conditioning and smelling like grease all the time got old fast.

Fast forward to 2014, married with a 2-year-old and running a small business = time to get back into my passion. Searching craigslist early one morning and stumbled upon the 1971 Datsun 510 you see below. The listing mentioned low mileage and the previous owner being an older lady (yeah right, I thought). Stock with L16 and automatic. No pictures which is never a good sign... I called him and got the basic story which was that the original owner named Mary bought it brand new from Palo Alto Datsun in CA and kept it from 1971 until 2007 and then the current owner bought it from her estate for his 16-year old daughter to drive to and from high school about 5 miles away. The mileage was a little over 52k (wow!). He painted it the original color, put new Panasports on it with some mild springs but everything else was pretty much original. After getting some pictures texted to me, I scheduled some time the next day to check it out.

After seeing the car for about 5 mins, I knew I had to buy it. The price was fair ($8K) and the opportunity too good to pass up. Drove it home (hour away) and immediately started to plan out the lifelong project. Keep it looking fairly original, respect the Datsun spirit but improve the fun and reliability factor. I think I have a good base to meet that goal.

First drive home in the 510! Was super excited and surprised with all the attention the car received.
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The interior (besides some crappy Kenwood CD deck) is completely stock down to original carpet which was looking very tired at this point.
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Stock L16 with a 32/36 Weber DGV and all the smog stuff pulled off it.
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Last edited by TheHeretic on 28 Dec 2016 09:28, edited 10 times in total.
Carpe Diem!
Ryan

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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby greenthumb » 20 Nov 2014 17:17

Holy cow!! What a find. Looks like a fantastic jumping off point! Welcome aboard, and pics, pics please as you progress on this

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two_68_510s
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby two_68_510s » 20 Nov 2014 18:15

Great looking car! Nice return to the fold! 8)
Joel

2 '68 510 2 door sedans
'95 240SX
74 Jensen Healey

“We will either find a way, or make one.” – Hannibal

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toylet
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby toylet » 20 Nov 2014 18:58

that thing looks straight!

qwik510
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby qwik510 » 20 Nov 2014 19:18

Welcome. Very nice car. Must be an early 71. Still has the column shift auto. Sweet.

You going to swap in a manual trans?
Enjoy The Ride!
David
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McShagger510
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby McShagger510 » 20 Nov 2014 22:02

Nice clean car! :shock:
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

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510wizard
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby 510wizard » 21 Nov 2014 07:05

Very nice! Even has aluminum rear brake drums.

datzenmike
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby datzenmike » 21 Nov 2014 16:52

qwik510 wrote:Welcome. Very nice car. Must be an early 71. Still has the column shift auto. Sweet.



I think all (or nearly all) '71's were column shift even the early 3N71B JATCOs that replaced the retiring BW-35s. The first JATCOs were April '71 but the first floor shift wasn't until June of that year. Not sure exactly when the '72 model year started July?


Gotta love the automatics... they are survivors.
"Nissan 'shit the bed' when they made these, plain and simple." McShagger510 on flattop SUs

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TheHeretic
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby TheHeretic » 28 Nov 2014 07:45

I'm definitely going to put in a manual transmission. In fact I just picked up a L20B and 200SX tranny combo a few weeks back and have started going through and getting everything cleaned up and in the right shape before swapping everything over in Dean Sherman's garage.

Off topic: I also started a project build on Ratsuns but realized that it makes no sense to have to update two forums. Am wondering which is the "better" forum to be more active in? Different crowd for sure in both places... What I am looking for is active participation, helpful advice and a friendly community. Once my knowledge increases I would love to be able to give back. In the mean time, maybe project pics will be enjoyable and possibly motivational for members.
Carpe Diem!
Ryan

Camano510
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby Camano510 » 29 Nov 2014 23:16

No disrespect intended or implied to Ratsun, but your car is very clean and 'practical' looking, and many of the Ratsun projects lean more toward the 'unfinished'/patina/rust-as-a-finish, squatted suspension look. Thats not a bad thing, if thats the look/style you want. You'll get tons of very good info from both, so of course its your choice. I guess you could start threads in both, and let the site experiences help you make your choice.

Very clean car, BTW. Good luck!
Darryl Cavanaugh
"There is no such thing as free school. Every lesson learned cost me some form of 'tuition'. Time, money, or pain. Sometimes all three".
71 510 2dr father/son project

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TheHeretic
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby TheHeretic » 05 Jan 2015 22:00

After looking around for a while I picked up most of the parts I need for the auto-to-manual swap. Going to document it as well as I can for the next newbie (like me) to follow the basic steps.

Definitely need the pedal box from a manual 510 so that you had the tab for attaching the clutch pedal return spring
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Here is the return spring which I actually had to get seperately as it didn't come with the pedal box (figured that out after I bought the box)
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The gas pedal from a manual car is important, unless you like stepping on the gas and brake at the same time. Once I take my gas pedal out you'll see the difference in the shape. This one is bent more to the right to accommodate the clutch and brake pedals.
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Picked up the shifter surround from an early style 510 (round instead of oval)
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Will be replacing my steering column cover and get rid of the automatic gear selector + housing
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The transmission going in (1977 200SX dogleg) came with a "short shifter" meaning the top of it was hacked off so needed a new shifter. See the comparison!
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Yeah need this for sure - clutch master cylinder from Beck Arnley
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Carpe Diem!
Ryan

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TheHeretic
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby TheHeretic » 05 Jan 2015 22:39

Some other parts I already had or needed to just buy online. Such as the transmission mount from Techno Toy Tuning

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OEM Nissan 280Z transmission bushing
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Hard clutch line from a manual 510
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Since it took me a long time to find the clutch line my backup was/is a full stainless steel line
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Carpe Diem!
Ryan

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McShagger510
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby McShagger510 » 06 Jan 2015 00:15

Pics look great, keep 'em coming. Don't forget to read up on the neutral safety switch wiring or the car won't run when your finished the swap.

James
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

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two_68_510s
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby two_68_510s » 06 Jan 2015 07:26

I would be interested in your auto setup, I sent you a PM.
Joel

2 '68 510 2 door sedans
'95 240SX
74 Jensen Healey

“We will either find a way, or make one.” – Hannibal

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TheHeretic
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Re: 1971 Red 510 "Jessie"

Postby TheHeretic » 13 Jan 2015 22:08

Overdue for an update even though I picked up the engine and dogleg 5-speed a couple months ago. Found a fairly good deal (IMO) on craigslist for a recently rebuilt L20b/transmission combo with the bonus of being able to drive it before the engine was pulled and sold to me. Ultimately I will want some more horsepower out of it but for now it serves my purpose perfectly. Period-correct and reliable with a huge increase in fun factor compared to the stock L16 and 3-speed auto. Some basic specs:

1977 200SX L20B Block (rebuilt 5/2014)
Closed Chamber A87 Head (Ported and Polished with 1.5" Intakes)
Isky Stage 1 Cam and Springs (7005 Kit)
S/S Nissan Competition 1.69" Intake and 1.38" Exhaust Valves
220 Manifold and 38mm SUs from a L18 SSS
Mallory distributor and Pertronix ignition
L16 stock exhaust manifold
Estimated Compression of 9.0:1

1977 200SX 5-speed (dogleg)
Exedy Stage 1 Clutch (5K miles on it)
Ermish Racing lightened flywheel

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Carpe Diem!
Ryan


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