240Z: TABCO vs Klokkerholm & other Rear quarter panels Comparison
One of the most problematic area in any 240Z restauration are the rear quarter panels. The problem is, that during the years it has most probably been repaired with cheap patches and a ton of bondo. Even the so called “rust-free” cars, since honestly most of them have rust in that area. It’s not the best design which datsun made back then and it just starts rusting. Compared to the front body panels it’s quite tricky to find a suitable solution and of course the best thing you can get is an original rear quarter panel, like i got for the left side:
But it can get pretty hard to find that, so the most common replacement panels used are made by TABCO USA. These are the ones that are sold by most Z-shops and the ones i got first as replacement panels:
Then there are the ones made by Danish company Klokkerholm. They’re still in business but the rear quarters are not produced anymore. I was lately able to get a set of these from some old stock.
Another option is the belgian company “VanWezel”. Same as above they’re still in business but do not support old cars like the 240Z anymore. Probably you’re able to find a set in some old storage somewhere:
And then there’s the Canadian “Wolf steel” Brand in Quebec, Canada. Which officially only has the 280Z chassis parts for sale but it appears that they can make 240Z panels upon request too.
It seems however that the part for the bumper at the rear is missing and some people pointed out it seems to be handmade. Might be an interresting option though but i thought it may be a bit of an overkill for me.
Today i had the possibility to compare both my Tabco and Klokkerholm Panels with my Panelbeater: Generally they both look totally the same, but it’s about the details. Black is klokkerholm, Silver is Tabco:
Both have the same edges. I feel like it’s probably even the same die-press design they’re based on. as they all have the same shape, inkluding the VanWezel panels. However the Tabco is made out of thicker gauge steel compared to the thin Klokkerholm:
And if you look close enough you can see some kind of “dents” or warps at the Arch, which may come from the pressing procedure. This is exactly where the paint shop later has to add Bondo. and i prefer my car to be out of metal and not Bondo. Not very well visible in the picture but it’s full of them and needs plenty of time to get it nice.
Someone pointed out that Klokkerholm and Tabco may have slightly different shapes and radius’ around tha rches but here are both on top of each other and they’re nearly the same:
My bodyshop told me he preferred the Tabco panels because it’s thicker steel and overall in a better shape:
So I’ll end up with the original rear quarter on the left sind and most probably the Tabco panels on the right side. Here’s alittle mock-up by my Bodyshop guy. as you can see even the Tabco’s need some love to fit like t he OEM panels…
To be honest – good panel beater or a metal guy can take care of any dings / imperfections up to minimize ‘bondo’ / Filler, so small dings are the least to worry about, because if you get the repair panels welded – you will have some heat warping all around that rear quarter that will require metal beating skills and even some heat shrinking. to get the panel back in shape. its too much of flat surfaces and too long welds once repairing with the ‘repair’ panels… Nice comparison btw! 🙂
Hi Romas, i checked a few things upon your respond and in the blog post i added some extra pictures and details for you 😉
Hi there. Where are you located? can you send me pictures to info@JDMjunkies.ch and your asking price? thanks
Johan Van rooyen
I am restoring a Datsun Z 240
I need some rust replacement panels .
Do you ship to Australia ?
Hi Johan, i do not make or sell any panels. but you can buy them at tabco USA or KFvintagejdm or autopanelsolutions. most of them ship worldwide.