Super Street Network

Due to the EU’s Global Data Protection Regulation, our website is currently unavailable to visitors from most European countries. We apologize for this inconvenience and encourage you to visit www.motortrend.com for the latest on new cars, car reviews and news, concept cars and auto show coverage, awards and much more.MOTORTREND.COM
 |   |   |  1991 Nissan 240SX - Back In Black
Subscribe to the Free
Newsletter

1991 Nissan 240SX - Back In Black

A little body work goes a long way.

Peter Tarach
Aug 6, 2011
Modp 1108 01+1991 nissan 240sx+cover Photo 1/11   |   1991 Nissan 240SX - Back In Black

Finding a pristine stock S13 has become so difficult in the Southern California region that I gave up on the quest after a few weeks of digging around. Most, if not all, Nissan 240s in So Cal have been sitting outside for more than 20 years, and with that much sun exposure, it’s going to be far from mint (even if the paint is original). I knew any 240 that I purchased would need to be re-sprayed, so I focused on finding a straight and unmolested chassis to work with, and even that is becoming increasingly difficult to track down.

Luckily, I found the car that you see before you and jumped on it right away, despite the lackluster paint and non-running condition. It was in the process of being put back together, but because I planned to swap the engine, I could care less about its mechanical state. After some wheeling and dealing and an exchange of many Benjamins, this ’91 240SX found its way back to my office’s tech center, where I began to dismantle it in preparation for paint.

Since the game plan is to drop a GM LS3 V-8 into the engine bay, it would be good to get paint out of the way before any of the major assembly work would begin — although, there was the matter of choosing what I would do with the exterior before it would get sprayed. For me, the choice was simple: the JDM 180SX Kouki aero package. Its ’90s-era Japanese styling is really hard to beat, plus its OEM construction ensures a perfect fit and finish. I sourced most of the large parts (bumper, side skirts and lights) used from a friend and turned to Nissanparts.cc for the rest of the parts. Nissanparts.cc has a great selection of JDM OE parts, and I was able to get things — like the hard-to-find JDM reinforcement bar and rear valences — shipped to me within days after ordering them.

If you’re anything like me, then having your car painted is a stressful and anxiety-ridden process. A proper paint job (that doesn’t cost a fortune) is hard to come by, but finding a painter that will put the needed time and care into the job is even harder. I wasn’t looking for anything crazy, either — a factory Nissan black re-spray is all I wanted. At the same time, I didn’t want an orange-peel, Maaco special. After a lot of research, several recommendations and speaking with Francis Fabiculanan of Donlyson Auto Concepts, I knew they would be able to provide me with the service and results I expected.

Modp 1108 02+1991 nissan 240sx+before Photo 2/11   |   Donylson Auto Concepts began by filling in all the dents and dings and smoothing out the large body panels.

Donlyson Auto Concepts operates out of Eagle Rock, CA, and is no stranger to high-end paint and custom one-off projects. When I visited the shop, there were plenty of cars that were in for serious makeovers, and I also had a chance to check out Francis’ personal Porsche 911 that has received the royal treatment in terms of body work and paint. He assured me that my car’s paint would come out looking the same way.

After dropping Project S13 off, I visited the shop several times to see how the progress was going and was relieved to see things were being done the right way. I had asked for the side marker lights to be shaved, and, unlike most body shops that would fill the holes in with bondo, Donylson welded the holes to ensure a smooth surface that would never crack. It’s these little details that tell me I chose the right painter.

When it came time to pick up the car and see the results, I couldn’t be happier. The mirror finish and shiny gloss of the new black paint is stunning. The S13 looks like a new car again, albeit one in pieces. My biggest fear, orange peel, was laid to rest when I walked around the car and found every panel was exceptionally smooth. The 20 years worth of dings and dents were all gone!

The only downside to having the car painted so early in a build is that I have to wait for the rest of it to come together before all the JDM aero gets installed. I’m eagerly awaiting the day that happens since I can’t wait to see what it will look like.

Francis Fabiculanan’s '79 Porsche 911
After ogling the Porsche 911 and its immaculate paint job, I knew Donylson Auto Concepts was the shop I wanted to paint Project S13. The Porsche’s paint is a by far one of the best and cleanest paint jobs I’ve seen to date.

Sourcebox

Donlyson Auto Concepts
Paint & Body Work
donlysonautoconcepts.com
323-254-8088
Nissanparts.cc
JDM & OEM Nissan Parts
nissanparts.cc
866-754-5500

Sources

By Peter Tarach
352 Articles

BROWSE CARS BY MARKET

MORE HOW TO

The never-ending hunt for power is a common one for project car builders and sometimes it’s so encapsulating, that we forget about the other crucial factors that can affect and even support those power goals. Capable braking and a dialed-in suspension come to mind here, but often neglected is engine monitoring from the driver’s seat
RodrezJun 4, 2021
Mackin Industries, Inc., purveyors of the finest JDM goods that include the likes of Advan Racing, Rays gramLIGHTS, Project Mu, and much, much more, recently gave us an inside look at some of the new products on their roster. Some of these items will be available by the time you’re reading this, while others are
RodrezApr 27, 2021
I’m sure you’ve noticed that we talk quite a bit about modernizing older chassis here at Super Street Network, and for good reason. By far the most popular group of cars to own and modify, at least within our demographic, come from the late ‘80s to ‘00 era, and with 20 to 30 years on
RodrezFeb 26, 2021
Chase Bays – Coolant Overflow Last year, as I began piecing this hatchback project together after it came back from DTM Autobody for its color change, Chase Bays provided their Tucked Aluminum Radiator kit that caught my attention for a few reasons, the first being that rather than just a small radiator that would sit
RodrezFeb 24, 2021
In the last update on Honda Tuning’s Project K24 Civic VX, I worked on getting the engine and transmission bolted in place along with its axles and a new wheel and tire package. It’s definitely starting to look like a car again after I’d completely torn it down for paint and bodywork a little over
RodrezFeb 5, 2021
Sponsored Links

SEARCH ARTICLES BY MAKE/MODEL

Search
CLOSE X
BUYER'S GUIDE
SEE THE ALL NEW
NEWS, REVIEWS & SPECS
TO TOP