March 7, 2016 TFRyan

Christine’s 280Z Project Part 2

Stepping forward a couple of months from the last dedicated blog update on Christine’s blackest of the black 280Z, and the car is now approaching it’s finishing point faster than ever. If this is your first time reading about the Z, be sure to check out the build thread HERE, as well as Part 1 to our blog regarding the Z HERE.

intak manifold as it sits

When we last left off with the Z, it was missing the front end and we had just switched engines to the built L28 that was waiting for the car and the turbo manifold was installed on the new engine. Since then, we have been cleaning up the engine bay of unnecessary holes, working on the body harness and dash harness for the car with a new fusebox, as well as fabricating a custom intake manifold for the car, among other things.

The intake manifold is officially wrapped up and is sitting on the built engine now and is awaiting the buttoning up process to start once the rest of the fabrication work is finished. Here is the intake manifold progression from a few pieces of aluminum to the finished product that sits on the car now:

Intake manifold grinding plate
Our fabricator Steve has been making leaps of progress on the car, and is showing his true hand at his fabricating skill daily. Here, he is creating channels for the intake runners to sit in to ensure the best fit.

Fitting the intake manifold plate to the runners
In fact, it fit so well that it didn’t have to be held on the runners. It’s the little things that matter in a ground up build like this.

mocking up the body of the intake manifold
The manifold block plate has been given its curved edges, and the body of the intake manifold is starting to take shape.

intake manifold is starting to take shape
Measure twice, cut once, weld once.

almost time to tack the intake manifold together to start the final welding process
Painters tape was being used to ensure the manifold didn’t shift while it was being tacked together. It’s like tetris, fitting all of the pieces perfectly together.

runners welded on and being cleaned up
Perfect fit or not, the runners and the manifold had to be mated together to ensure the proper seal.

mocking up the intake manifold
Back at it again with the blue tape, just for that little bit of security. The beveled edges let the bead of the weld sit in it, and ensures the best fit (not to mention it also looks awesome).

intake manifold welding
A clamp was also used just to be safe, painters tape isn’t the most solid thing in the world after all.

more welding completed and the manifold is nearing completion
We see the now irrelevant stock manifold behind the freshly pieced together custom manifold, that is awaiting a piece of slightly angled aluminum piping to angle the throttle body downward to allow maximum hood clearance.

christine looking upon her 280Z
Christine and her husband Gene like to stop by TF on Fridays and check out the progress on the car. They are both major car enthusiasts and enjoy every step of the process. She gets more and more excited with each visit as everything falls into place and her vision takes form.

As the intake manifold sits now on the car
With the throttle body flange welded on and the massive throttle body attached, the manifold has come to completion. Once the cold side intercooler piping is complete, the intake manifold will go off to coating for a new finish.

We’ll leave off there, another update featuring the finished intercooler piping, dash wiring, and intake will be on its way soon.

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