Typical Rust Spots of a Nissan Skyline DR30 “Tekkamen”

I visited a DR30 Skyline and shot some pictures of the body, documenting the usual rust spots.

I evaluated the Skyline mainly based on restoration effort: what needs to be welded, what are the typical rust spots, and what kind of parts may be hard to find for a proper nuts-and-bolts restoration?

There doesn’t seem to be much information on the English-speaking community, so I decided to document my findings here on my blog.

General Appearance / Dents / Paint

Note: This is not a “true” Tekkamen. The bonnet, headlights and smaller parts were swapped over.
The taillights look pretty cool I have to say. The two-tone paint also looks badass.

On the outer shell, you can look out for the following:

  • Condition of the paint. Was the car repainted?
  • If the car got repainted, how well was it done?
  • Search for obvious rust spots. Especially the bumpers, wheel arches, rocker panels and bottom sill of the doors should be inspected.

While this car made a good first impression, it went worse the closer I looked at it.

Paint itself looks good. Shiny, no dust particles, no dents.

The paint is shiny and seem to have been done by an expert (no orange skin and no dust), but it seems they did not remove any parts at all when painting the car. It seems they just masked everything and gave the car a new paint, which just looks terrible.

Overspray on the inner fenders.
Overspray on the rear triangle-shaped window moulding.
Overspray on the gasket of the rear glass.
Flaking off paint on the rear bumper, badly repaired accident damage.
Rust bubbles at the rear bumper.
More bad repaint at the gas filler neck.

Rocker Panels / Doors

If your Skyline has a body kit installed, try to get a glimpse at the metal underneath. Look at the place where the front fenders are installed.

Big plastic pieces cover the metal. Try to get a look from behind.
Left rocker panel seen from below. Note how the body kit hides the flaky rust.
Looking from underneath the car to the same spot on the picture above. Note how the inner side of the rocker panel looks very rusty. At least the brake lines look good.
This is at the rear end of the elft door. The plastic body kit has a small gap here. This Skyline has rust holes and bad rust repairs. The body kit must be removed to properly repair this rust.
The same spot with the door closed.
The bottom of the left door. Note the corrosion at the bottom sill, right behind the gasket. I would say this is still okayish. A bit of corrosion protection oil or grease should be able to stop further corrsion.
Looking from the front, on the right seal, looking towards the rear. Note the pastic piece covering up rust on the front fender. Large rust holes between the rocker panel and the front frame rail.


  • Check the conditions of the brake and fuel tubes.
  • Check for transmission/diff oil leaks.
  • Check for rust on the front/rear frame rails.
  • Check the inner side of the rocker panels.
Underbody, looking towards the rear. Seems like the DR30 already came with a cat.
The front frame rail seems to be a very rust-prone spot. The problematic zone is not necessary the large rust hole (that is fixed easily), but the condition on the inside of the metal frame rail.
Through the drain hole, it can be seen that the inside of the frame rail is severely rusted, and even rusted through in a few spots. The frame rail needs to be replaced.
This is the rear pocket, next to the fuel tank. The bottom part of the pocket had been completely replaced in the past. The repair seems to be acceptable to me. The quality is hard to assess due to the large amount of body sealer used.
The front side of the front right wheel house. Note the corrosion on the upper side of the wheel house. That needs to be welded, too.
It doesn’t look much better on the rear side of the same front wheel house. Note the rust holes in the upper left corner. More welding needed at a difficult-to-reach spot.
The transmission must have been swapped over from a different model, as the shifter position does not align with the body.
The transmission and exhaust seems to be in good condition, but the front left frame rail is severely weakened.

Trunk Area

The trunk allows easy access to the inside of the rear wheel arches. Inspect the arches for signs of corrosion.
Because everything has been oversprayed, it is difficult to assess the state of the rear arches. At least they still seem to be original.
Looking at the rear pocket. We have seen the welding work done in this area from the outside above. There are more parts missing, and more overspray.

Engine Bay

I don’t have much experience with the FJ20 engine. This engine sounded smoothly, and the cam lobes showed no sign of excessive wear.

Things I’ve noticed in this engine bay:

  • A lot of aftermarket equipment installed: intercooler, air filter. If the engine doesn’t run smooth, this may have an impact.
  • The wiper bottle was an interesting solution. Is the original no longer available?
  • The radiator fluid reservoir was also not attached anywhere. Perhaps due to the Tekkamen swap?
  • The engine started stalling after 5 minutes of runtime, and couldn’t keep idle. Requires investigating.
  • Lots of custom wiring needs to be figured out.


Check the interior for issues/wear.

This Skyline had the following issues on the interior:

  • Seats don’t match to door panels.
  • Rear seats and seatbelts missing.
  • Dashboard is not cracked, but has drill holes from additionally installed gauges.


This Skyline was cheap for a reason. I eventually decided not to buy it for the following reasons:

  • Bad paint job. While the paint itself is of good quality, nothing was disassembled during repaint. There’s overspray everywhere.
  • Corrosion on multiple parts: rocker panels, frame rail, pockets, doors, wheel arches. A lot of welding work is needed.
  • Interior parts mismatch/missing.
  • Engine not running smoothly.
  • General condition questionable. Lots of tuning and repairs done with low quality. Everything seems to have been done cheap, quick & dirty.

I think the overall condition of the car is not super bad, but so many repairs were done badly and would need to be redone for a perfect finish. It would be easier to pick a chassis that had been less messed with, and use it as a restoration basis instead. That being said, the seller already indicated that this car is not a good basis for a perfect restoration, so he was very honest and open.

In any case, I hope these pictures help you find your dream Skyline. Let me know if you have any questions!

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