We came across Warner Grandfield and his magnificent 76 280Z pictures on Instagram snapped by himself at Redphone Media. The pics were so cool we just had to get the scoop on his BSR Spec Road Rocket.
This is what he spilt us via email, “I’m the second titled owner of the Datsun, it has 36K original miles on it currently (not rolled over). The original owner apparently passed away back in ’97 and his son kept the car locked away until not too long ago. A friend of mine bought the car off him, got it home, pulled the engine and replaced the primitive fuel injection system with dual SU round top carbs off the earlier Z’s (this guy has had 67 Z’s so he had the parts laying around haha). He cut the floor pans and rails out and replaced them all and then painted the Z the Bob Sharp / Paul Newman tribute colors it is now.
I traded him a 1990 Toyota Sera that I imported from Japan though O Pie Garage here local in Georgia and gave him a few grand along with it. Drove the 4 hours up to Asheville North Carolina to pick the car up from him, drove the Sera up there, weird little ride that thing is haha. Hopped in the Datsun and drove it the 4 hours back home; learned some things about it that night too… like the driver side front caliper being locked and not clamping at all… that was scary on the highway. Woke up from nightmares quite a few times that night like the brake pulling the car to the right too hard into other cars and what not lol. Drove it out 2 hours to Import Alliance as well; Atlanta roads ripped my front air dam off so I had to reform it for the new lower set up and rivet it back on.
I replaced both front calipers, new Stoptech pads and rotors as well as new drum shoes (disk conversion in the near future). The ride was a little soft for me and the bushings felt worn, so I did 5 way adjustable Tokico Illuminas in the front and rear with Eibach progressive springs (rides amazingly) and the Energy poly bushing kit front and rear as well with new dif mount and a few other mounts. Turned out that every old strut in the car was blown and collapsed under their own weight, so I had literally been riding on springs 👌. I didn’t even
know AC Delco made struts… but they shouldn’t. Replaced the rear spindle pins and bushings as well… talk about hell. After all of the suspension was done I went ahead and threw on some Ram Flo basket filters and a new set of headers (going to fab the exhaust from the headers back soon for a center exit twin pipe). Replaced the worn stock leather wrapped steering wheel with a refinished rose wood 240Z wheel and a rose wood 4spd shift knob to match. The 4spd is actually quite good; new clutch doing just fine too.
The car is in pretty good shape as it sits. Plans for the near future are a set of Atara wheels, repainting the car one solid color and then wrapping it back to this paint scheme.. because race car. No flares or any of that, I like the ride height
with a good set of wheels and stock body, reminds me of the old skinny body 964 Porsche’s. Thicker sway bar kit to come as well and maybe Triple Webers if I can figure out how to tune and sync these carbs well enough myself. I’m going to be building my Dajiban tow vehicle as well so I can camp and make some great trips for some vintage racing with the Datsun in the future. I’m a big fan of weird, unusual cars and Z’s of course haha.
Thanks again for taking an interest and sharing the Z! I very much appreciate it and am thrilled that it catches someone’s eye the right way!”
Car: 1976 Datsun 280Z
Car Owner Warner Grandfield @Blinded_By_Datsun
Snap by Warner Grandfield at Redphone Media @Redphone_Media
~ Citizen Z ~