NS F355 Project
Topic started by: Yarmouth Fiero, Date: 06-24-2012 10:59 AM
Original thread: http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum3/HTML/000137.html


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #1, 06-24-2012 10:59 AM
      On a prompt from a very experienced and knowledgeable PFF member, I have decided to start a post on a project that has been 20+ years on the shelf.

History:
Bought an 85 Fiero off the showroom floor fall of '85 at Bonnyman Pontiac. It was the only one they had in stock. It was red with grey cloth interior, 4cyl, 5 speed manual. Nothing fancy but it caught my eye so I plunked down $16,000 cash and waited all day for them to prep it for sale. Took the typical lumps from my friends about my new plastic car. But man, it was a fun ride. Drove it for 2 summers all over Canada and eastern states with my new girlfriend (now wife). Stored it during the winters while I sailed the world on oil tankers.

Fast forward to 2012 and 3 kids, two homes, 2 dogs, 7 years of university, a couple jobs and its time to start what I always knew in my heart was coming, my little red Fiero was going to change its looks and its performance..... in a big way.

I had been following the various Kit car magazines over the years, sketched out some ideas, jotted down my thoughts, all the while, keeping the dust off my furure project. The engine went in an S-10, various body parts went out the door, the interior went in the attic for future use, probably all too familiar to many of you.

Then I recently stumbled on PFF and a whole new world of information and possibilities came into view. Together with my 2 sons, we have been reading and researching as much information as possible. We have a good idea of what we want as an end product but very little knowledge and experience about how to get there. I've also had the incredible fortune to meet in person, fellow Fiero enthusiast Bloozberry who is one of the few local PFF participants. There is suddenly a very bright light at the end of that long-g-g-g-g project tunnel. So here I go. Our dream car will hopefully include the following:

An F355 Spyder style body
A total suspension, brake and performance upgrade
A well engineered structural upgrade for the stretched spyder chassis
A mild SBC with 250+ hp and the original 5 speed gearbox
A killer paint job ( boys and I are still doing the rock, paper, scissors, spock to decide on red or yellow)

I've included a picture of a sketch I did, I think before the boys were even born. What the spiders and moths haven't eaten is still hanging over the work bench.

With my very brief time here on PFF so far, I have already had several helpful comments regarding our project from fellow PFF members and I am looking forward to much more input over the next few years. I'll try my hardest to keep everyone up to date on the progress and include pictures where ever possible.

So here I go with a mint 85 Fiero chassis, a somewhat clean workspace and two teenagers who are seriously pumped about one day driving their finished car through town. I suspect when its all done, we'll be building a second car just to keep the peace.

Sincerely

Yarmouth Fiero







IFLYR22 (lunas0777@gmail.com) MSG #2, 06-24-2012 12:10 PM
      Beautiful!
Will be watching this!

What is your projected time frame for completion?

Have you settled on a specific suspension and brake upgrade route?

I have been working on a complete redo of an old car myself. It looks like I may have it done sometime next year, after 4 years of work so far.

-Dave


Bloozberry MSG #3, 06-24-2012 12:48 PM
      One of the funny stories Yarmouth Fiero related to me yesterday during his visit was that to keep the family pressure to sell the car manageable over all these years, he's been parting it out to make it less attractive. Who'd want to buy an old Fiero skeleton? Looks like the strategy worked. The pressure must have been mounting again though because he recently cut it in half! (look closely, you'll see the frame extension in the works).

I'm subscribed.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #4, 06-24-2012 01:35 PM
      Thanks IFLYR22. I hear alot of positive comments about the HT suspension and brake upgrades so I may lean in that direction. I guess the first thing is to nail down the wide body requirements of the 355. But I like that they work with you on your specific requirements and also offer a range of options to suit your budget and goals. But I'm always open to suggestions on other suitable suppliers.

With regard to time line, I would like to have it completely done 4 years max so that my youngest son who's building it with me can drive his prom date in style. Realistically, he may end up driving his prom date is a modified Fiero without a complete and painted body. I hope his future date has a good sense of humour.

I have a ton of stories Blooz and I'm sure we'll share them over the next few years. The engine was the first to go. I was in 2nd year of my engineering degree, the house needed a new roof, my daughter was wondering why mommy was so mad... " she'll be ok honey...please just hold the wrench so we can get this engine off the cradle and out the door. The nice boy next door needs it for his truck". The most recent frame cut was in response to that familiar " when are you going to get rid of that useless fame and make room for the family van?". If I don't start buring wire soon, I may be moving closer Blooz

[img]http://images.fieroforum.com/2012/IMG_0033.JPG


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #5, 06-24-2012 01:45 PM
      Oops. Still learning how to post pictures properly. Here is a picture of my daughter and I preping the engine for the S-10 for the nice boy next door. She's off to college this year. Talk about a project taking generations to complete

edit: removed photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

IFLYR22 (lunas0777@gmail.com) MSG #6, 06-24-2012 05:46 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

One of the funny stories Yarmouth Fiero related to me yesterday during his visit was that to keep the family pressure to sell the car manageable over all these years, he's been parting it out to make it less attractive. Who'd want to buy an old Fiero skeleton? Looks like the strategy worked. The pressure must have been mounting again though because he recently cut it in half! (look closely, you'll see the frame extension in the works).

I'm subscribed.


Ha ha... brilliance!

I have had the Ryan/Held/HT/Westshore fabricators suspension and brakes on mine since 2000/2001. Have not had any real complaints, just some annoyances.

-Dave


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #7, 06-24-2012 07:10 PM
      I'm a big fan of "one stop shopping" where possible but as we are going to upgrade so many things, it may not be possible. I ordered a set of sway bars from the Fiero Store just to get a "feel" for the shipping / customs charges as well as the reception to shipping to Canada and paying with Canadian funny money. It went very well and while the extra charges to get across the boarder are not insignificant, I was very happy with the service and quick delivery.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #8, 07-02-2012 02:51 PM
      Chassis reinforcement for my 355 Spyder

There does not seem to be any end to the online discussion regarding the proper reinforcement of a Fiero chassis for a 355 Spyder. There appears to be as many opinions as there are Fieros, which makes sense I guess. Reading through old build threads, it seems the discussions always center around a few key topics:

1. X frame or no X frame
2. How to properly tie in the reinforcements to the existing longintudinal frames to counteract sagging
3. How to reinforce the chassis transversely to counteract twisting

While many of the threads failed to come to any kind of census, one common theme appeared.......

DO NOT CUT THE ROOF OFF UNTIL AFTER ALL THE REINFORCEMNTS ARE DONE.

It seems that in the end, most of the people who undertook the challenge and went through with the chassis upgrades, seem to be happy with their individual results, although there are a few that state they regrete doing it. As the topic seemed to reach a climax around 2003 ( based on dates of old build threads), I would be curious to see how the various modification styles are holding up almost 10 years later.

Regardless, I will continue to forge ahead with my plans to build a 355 Spyder and "borrow" as many ideas from previous builders as I can. To date, I have the rear section of my 85 chassis separated from the forward section and moved back out of the way for now. As I mentioned in an earlier post, I am doing a 3" chassis stretch as well so having the back half out of the way during the chassis reinforcement provides lots of working room.

I hope my next comment does not open up old wounds from threads a decade old, but I will not be installing the infamous X frame under my chassis. Apart from the fact that I will be needing all the ground clearance I can get because Nova Scotia roads suck for the most part, I just don't see the benifits to adding that much structure and weight down low in the horizontal plane of the car. That is all I will say on that matter.

One thing I did notice in many of the old threads on this topic is that many builders ( not all) used relatively small structural shapes for the main reinforcement, ie 1" x 1", 1" x 2" or they went very heavy on plate thickness, ie 3/8" plate. I'm not sure but I think this is because many of the reinforcements did not including removing the existing rocker frames. Since the 355 body is quite wide compared to the original Fiero chassis, especially in the rocker panel area, I have decided to go big...... I'm talking 3" x 5" square structural tubing, laying on its side and removing the existing rocker frames. The existing rocker frame flanges will remain as they will provide something substantial to weld the new frames to. I should be more specific and say that I will be using two structures welded together to give a final dimension of 3" x 5". I will use a 3" x 3" and a 2" x 3". The reason is that once they are welded together, they will provide the structural shape and dimensions I desire plus have a substantial double thickness vertical web down the length of the tubes. This will increase the tube stiffness substantially and allow me to use a thinner wall thickness without worrying about the tube collapsing in the middle when loaded up.

This 3" x 5" frame will form the new rocker frame and connect the A pillar and the B pillar. At this time I will only talk about the B pillar. I want to retain the existing B pillar as much as possible in the area of the door jam so the 3" x 5" will rise vertically at the position and angle of the firewall.




Since I am only mocking this up with cardboard at the moment, I did not cut into the existing B pillar, however, the 3" x 5" tube will pass through the existing sheelmetal and get fastened in place using an appropriate technique. The 3" x 5" tube will be capped when finished. The next picture shows how the top of the 3" x 5" tube will tie into the top longitudinal frame and an extension plate on the lower end of the 3" x 5" tube will tie into the lower longitudinal frame.



The next item of business is to reinforce the firewall as this seemed to be a key issue for many builders before me. As I don't want any new structure to infringe on the cab, I have decided to use a triangulated truss using 1" x 1 1/2" square tubing on the engine compartment side of the firewall. While this structure is relatively small in section, having it triangulate as well as tie into all 4 longitudinal fames should provide adequate stffening to the firewall. When the car is finished, the 1" thick frames should be hidden by a heat reflective insulation blanket. On a side note, I haven't removed my rear window yet as it adds additional support to the car until the reinforcements are completed. However, there does appear to be a sheet metal tube under the window that connects the two upper longitudinal frame rails. After the window is removed, I'll evaluate this frame and see if its worth upgrading as it will form the top of the triangulated truss.



So I think I have covered most of the bases with regard to the rocker frame, B pillar and firewall. The next order of business is to work on the connection of the rocker frame to the A pillar. This will be more difficult as the 5" rocker must transition down to a much narrower A pillar. My goal here is to keep the stock locations for the two door hinge mounting points. There has also been much discussion regarding the need to tie the reinforcements to the front cross member. However, I don't see how this can be accomplished and also, what is to be gained by this modification.

I look forward to hearing from members who have gone through this process and I welcome suggestions, comments and chuckles.

As well, I'm not sure how this thread gets moved to the Construction Zone, whether its by votes or comments from those of you following my thread. However, I sure hope I get moved out of the Technical Section soon as a few days of no bumps and you find yourself back on page 6


Bloozberry MSG #9, 07-02-2012 08:21 PM
      Nothing like diving in with both feet! The cardboard mock ups are a great way to visualize how it's all going to interconnect even before you turn on the welder. One of the nice things about getting away from the stock body is the extra room for things like the chassis mods you're planning. The F355 is so much wider than stock that you can get away with hiding these members quite well, and the three inch frame stretch gives you the room behind the firewall to do some stiffening too.

A couple things to note:

- those B pillar extensions that extend to the new rockers will block the door scoops... that's no biggie if you're not planning to use them to feed air in the engine bay or through relocated radiators;

- I'm not sure if you're done massaging the tops of those B pillar extensions or not but you won't be abble to leave them squared off and jutting out like that... while the overall F355 body is 6" wider than the Fiero, it's about the same width as the Fiero at the door tops, and bulges outward from there;

- I agree with you about not tying in the reinforcements to the front crossmember... I can't see how that would work either;

- As for getting your thread in the Construction Zone, check out the first two posts in the list at the top of the Zone. One of them is "Posting Rules" and the other is "About: The Construction Zone". All you need to know about how to get this thread moved into the CZ is there. Basically you have to tough it out in another area first until you've shown you're sticking around and in it for the long haul.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #10, 07-02-2012 08:43 PM
      Thanks for the great comments Blooz. I agree that the 355 does offer enough room that all the chassis mods can be easily hidden from view. I was reading a 355 build thread elsewhere and the builder has added some significant steel work from the roof to the aft end on the engine bay and it all appears to get hidden from view by the bodywork.

With regard to the door side scoops, I thought I had measured atleast +5" of clearance between the inner edge of the rocker scoop and the inner edge of the door sill so I assumed the door scoop would have the clearance. My 3" x 5" vertical frame is only about 1/2" outboard of the original B pillar frame at its widest point. I do want the option to have additional rads or at least a good sized air intake for the SBC. I'll take a picture shortly and post it.

After I posted the pics I realized that the tops of the B pillars would have to be cut down to allow the body curves to sweep past them. Do they make cardboard cutting blades for a recip saw? ha-ha-ha

I'll keep posting to the TD & Q for now and hopefully Mr Pennock will smile on me. Perhaps a box of fresh Yarmouth lobster or Digby scallops would help my cause


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #11, 07-02-2012 09:01 PM
      Hi Blooz

Here is a picture I just took showing how far the 3" x 5" frame extends past the original B pillar metal work. From the outer edge of the 3" x 5" to the outboard edge of the firewall is exactly 5" and this edge runs almost vertical. I am hoping the inner edge of the door scoop will clear this. If not, does this mean the scoop actually goes through the existing B pillar?



I added a dotted line to show where the 3" x 5" could be trimmed to clear the body work. I'll confirm the actual measurements before I start cutting steel.


Bloozberry MSG #12, 07-02-2012 10:09 PM
      That looks good... plenty of room for the scoops. Somehow in the other pictures it looked like the 3 X 5 was sticking much further out that that... maybe I got too much sun today too.

355Fiero MSG #13, 07-02-2012 11:45 PM
      Yarmouth Fiero;

Welcome to the world of replicas. You did the first part very well. Good call on not cutting the roof off. The Firro firewall is the weakest part of the frame as soon as you cut the roof out of the unibody.

The one lice I would recommend on your reinforcements is to make the bottom of the b-pillar wider so it gives more of a triangulation against the b-pillar. The bottom of the firewall is where it flexes the worst so making that the strongest will do you well when removing the roof.

Looks good. Looking forward to seeing more. I also sent you a pm about a body you might be interested in on East Coast.

Cheers
Don


ericjon262 MSG #14, 07-03-2012 12:12 AM
      I'm loving everything so far with one exception.... PLEASE don't do a SBC, there are so many cooler more unique combos out there to be done!



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #15, 07-03-2012 07:19 AM
      Thanks Blooz, I took alot of pictures before I got a couple that didn't look weird. I even went back and marked the mock up with a few dimensions because the B pillar looked 8" wide at the top. I even ran out to double check what I had done because it didn't look right at all. Isn't that what they say " measure twice, shoot once". I'm hoping to get better with the camera as the build progresses.

I responded to your PM Don. Thanks for the advice regarding the shape of the B pillar. I agree that it should be angled inward however I was trying to keep it just a little wider than the existing B pillar metal work to allow a strong connection between the two pieces. I will be altering the actual configuration of the cardboard mock up for a number of reasons and I'll try to incorportate your suggestion at the same time.

Thanks for the suggestion regarding engine choice ericjon262. I agree that the SBC in the fiero may be a little "90's" and I am certainly open to suggestions regarding other engine choices. I haven't made a final commitment to engine selection yet and I'll certainly check out the link you provided.


fieroguru MSG #16, 07-03-2012 07:39 AM
      I like your plans with the chassis reinforcement, but I wouldn't have it stay so close to the B-pillar and angle it as much as possible to get it as close as possible to the strut tower. The strut tower is the main load point for the rear and tying your reinforcement directly into it should work better than just reinforcing the passenger compartment and relying on the longer rear frame rails to take it from there. Here is the last one I did with 2x3 1/8" wall, it was for a stock body, so the fuel filler tube kept me from going any further back (but you could always add some gussets or smaller tube triangulation):


For the front, I sectioned into the lower a-piller frame and inserted the tube. With the angles of the tubes, I was able to tack everything in place, remove the tubes for full welding, then slide them back into place for welding to the chassis.


Here is a teaser pic for the underside:


Bloozberry MSG #17, 07-03-2012 07:49 AM
      Oooo... a flat panel bottom... cool.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #18, 07-03-2012 07:56 AM
      Awesome pictures and suggestions fieroguru. It never occured to me to move the support further back. I love this idea and it makes sense structurally. I love how you handled the A pillar and transverse stiffening too.

Did you build a jig to rotate your chassis? That is a whole new way to look at a fiero.....that's not sitting in a ditch.

Mind if I ask what wall thickness you use for your structural tubes?


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #19, 07-03-2012 08:04 AM
      Sorry Fieroguru. I see you stated 1/8" wall tubing. I was a little mesmerized by the pictures

fieroguru MSG #20, 07-03-2012 12:02 PM
      I am away from the computer for a couple of days, but I can pm you more pictures after the 4 th if you would like.

fieroguru MSG #21, 07-03-2012 12:35 PM
      I am away from the computer for a couple of days, but I can pm you more pictures after the 4 th if you would like.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #22, 07-04-2012 09:30 PM
      Thanks for the great pics in the PM Fieroguru. As you suggested, we made a change to the position and angle of the 3 x 5 so that it passes past the B pillar and then angles upward to the top longitudinal frame as far back as possible. We set the stock wheel in place with the 3" frame extension and using the dimensions from Blooz's Stage 3 drawing for wheel diameter and width, ride height and rear track dimension we located the point of intersection of the new frame and the top longitudinal that should be well clear of the suspension travel. Using the photos Don posted as a rough guide for the location of the fuel fill, I think we arrived at a suitable rough layout for this part of the frame reinforcement. Although at the moment, my hopes of using the door intakes to feed airflow into the engine compartment may be impeded. We may refine this frame a little further.




Next step is to rough in a design for the A pillar reinforcement.


355Fiero MSG #23, 07-05-2012 03:50 PM
      Graham;

Looks good for reinforcing. You may want to also put some plate gusseting in between the brace going up to the upper frame rail and the firewall. This will add additional strength to the bottom of the Fiero firewall which is what flexes the most after cutting off the roof.

Another item you can use to reinfirce the firewall is a set of 1/8 or 3/16" plates cut at tapered angles on top of the back of the centre console and welded to the firewall. The bottom of the braces would be about2.5-3" wide and the top can be down to 1-1.5" wide and you sit these on each of the rails that run along the top of the centre console. This ties the firewall into the centre console very well which is a key structural piece of the unibody.

Keep the pics coming.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #24, 07-05-2012 03:57 PM
      Thanks for the advice Don. I'm a ship builder so I certainly like the idea of lots of gussets. I'll bring more cardboard home tonight. I also printed off some full size images of Ferarri wheels to hide those nasty stock wheel that came with the car in 1985. They are in amazing shape though for being 28 years old.

Bloozberry MSG #25, 07-05-2012 06:51 PM
      Those stock steelies look better than the styrofoam ones I made for my car! The rear ones were still on it when you came to visit if I recall.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #26, 07-05-2012 09:32 PM
      Good-bye steelies....hello Ferrari wheels..........whoa baby.... who ordered the 21" wheels? I gotta check the print scale on that plotter



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #27, 07-06-2012 09:40 PM
      Sadly... its always the youngest of the family who draws the short straw for the fun jobs.........like drilling out the old cradle bushings and deburring the new steel inventory

Sure its fun to burn wire but I keep telling them they'll appreciate their car more if they do all the little jobs along the way.



edit: removed photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #28, 08-11-2012 10:31 PM
      Progress is slowly moving forward with a focus on the 3" frame extension. As well, I have been working on a 3D model of the chassis using RHINO which I will use to not only document the chassis modifications but also construct an accurate 3D model of the entire chassis which can then be used develop a body, using the original Fiero body mount points where possible.

While I use RHINO for work, measuring the Fiero chassis with all its stamped sheet metal panels and translating this into a somewhat accurate 3D drawing is proving to be a huge challange and thus a slow, time consuming process. But like all Fiero projects, baby steps are the only way to go.

Here is an image of the driver side rear upper and lower chassis frame rails showing the 3" chassis extension with extension pieces in place as well as the sheet metal to blend the extensions seamlessly into the existing frame rails.



The upper frame rail extension piece was fabricated from 1/16" sheet and formed to duplicate the non rectangular cross section of the upper frame rail. The peice is 8" long which will allow the part to be inserted 2 1/2" into each end of the original frame rail with a 3" extension. The part couldn't be much longer as the frame rail changes cross section geometry beyond this point. I added a few 3/4" dia holes in the sides of the frame rails to allow for plug welding of the extensions.

The extensions are tacked welded in place in these photos. Also note our typical Yarmouth foggy summer weather has quickly turned my newly fabricated parts a bright red on the surface. Once full welding commences, this nasty red oxide will be history.



The lower frame rail extension pieces were fabricated from 4" x 2" x 1/8" HSS which were split and rewelded to form the necessary 4" x 1 3/4" x 1/8" dimensions. They were also given a 5 deg kink about mid length to match the original frame rail geometry. Again, the pieces are 8" long due to the narrowing of the lower frame rail geometry.



The rear section of the chassis was then moved in position and the alignment checked in 6 positions before the parts were tacked in place. The alignment was then checked a second time. Before the chassis was ever cut, datum points were punched into the chassis on either side of the cut to allow for realignment and confirmation of the stretched length during assembly as well as before and after welding.





Once final welding is complete, new sheet metal parts will be added to cover the extension pieces and welded to make the final installation both strong and hopefully somewhat invisible to the casual observer.

Following completion of the chassis stretch, installation of the rocker panel reinforcement and firewall strengthening will begin, prior to removal of the roof on this Spyder project. The design work for this is well underway.


84se2m4 (colin_737@hotmail.com) MSG #29, 08-12-2012 01:51 AM
      Wooo another nova scotian! The car is coming along, best of luck!

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #30, 08-12-2012 11:25 AM
      Subscribed!

HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #31, 08-12-2012 11:33 AM
      Thanks 84se2m4 and Sage. I'll try to keep the updates rolling in.

Bloozberry MSG #32, 08-12-2012 02:19 PM
      Aha! Good to see you're still at it, though I didn't have any doubts. I know first hand how long it takes to create some decent drawings... far more work than what shows. I missed out on an opportunity to visit you this past week but will be up in your neck of the woods again for the Yarmouth Air Experience 2012 (the mini-air show) 21-22 August. I'll bring my bubble level and carpenter's square.

fierogt28 MSG #33, 08-12-2012 06:16 PM
      YF, nice to see another maritimer at our fiero hobby.

That 85 fiero looks to be in really nice shape frame-wise. You don't see to many around in that condition.

I'll be following this thread as long as the build goes. I'm just as interested for Blooze's N* build too.

Its fun to see details posted while progress is recorded..:P

Thanks,



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #34, 08-12-2012 09:36 PM
      Hi Blooz, yes we are still at it. I got a little side tracked with summer racing but now that the season is almost over we'll get back on track. You are right about drawings for these projects. I know they'll be very benificial as the build progresses but holy smokes, the engineers at GM threw in as many twists, bumps and dimples as they could on these chassis. The engine cradle alone has been a beast to model in 3D..... and its still not finished. Hope you can stop by during the air show. The one they held a couple years ago was incredible for such a small air field. I'm also eager to see what you'll be driving.

Hi fierogt28, nice to hear from you. My frame is basically in show room condition. It only saw 2 summers of driving before it went into storage back in 88. I am sure the Fiero purists on this form must totally cringe when they read about how some of us "modify" perfectly good cars. Maybe that is why the build threads have their own section....... so if you can't stand to watch a car being dismantled, then you don't have to look.

I also agree that we are all eagerly waiting for the next installment of Blooz's build thread. Its been a while so you know we're going to see some dramatic developments.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #35, 08-22-2012 04:26 PM
      Proceeding ahead with the 3" chassis stretch, the reinforced extensions were fitted inside the existing upper and lower frame rails and then welded along all possible sides. I also added 3/4" holes in the original frame rails to allow for a few plug welds as well.










While I did prep all surfaces and edges to remove all paint and zinc undercoating, I did forget to remove the undercoating inside the frame rails in way of the welds ( of course these chassis's were probably zinc dipped once welded). It caused some grief when welding as the splatter from the zinc repeatedly fouled the tip. Mental note to remove ALL foreign material before welding the rocker reinforcements which are next on the agenda.

The next step to finish off the chassis stretch is to cap all four extensions with 1/16" sheet metal and then sand smooth, prime and paint.



Its alot more work but once its all done, the extension should be all but invisible....... to the untrained eye.

Thanks for stopping by Blooze and looking over my project and discussing your project as well. It is a huge boost to know you are not going completely off track.


fieroguru MSG #36, 08-22-2012 05:08 PM
      I am glad to see you are taking the extra step to clean up the overall appearance of the extended portion. It takes more work, but in the end it shows that you were more concerned with the details than just getting the swap done as quickly as possible. Keep up the good work!


Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #37, 08-22-2012 05:59 PM
      Nicely done! Have a friend that used basically the same technique to graft two Corvette frames together, producing a result that was hard to tell had been altered from factory.

What you show as plans for the rocker frame upgrade with fieroguru's suggestions, should make that frame pretty much flex free, at least in theory, and I'm betting in practical application as well!

Thanks for the update.

HAGO!

(edit cause I type too fast sometimes!)

[This message has been edited by Sage (edited 08-22-2012).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #38, 08-22-2012 08:29 PM
      Thanks for the support and advice Fieroguru and Sage. I am hoping that these modifications result in a strong, safe chassis when I'm all done. Please feel free to offer suggestions when and where you see fit.

I had some inspiration today at an air show in town when a friend took me up in his home built plane. All I could think at 2000 ft was if he can build a chassis to get us in the air, keep us in the air and get us back on the ground safely, then surely I can build a car chassis to simply stay in one piece on the highway.

BTW..... at the airshow today I saw some of Blooze's handywork as a member of a team reconstructing vintage aircraft. He certainly has many talents when it comes to precision fabrication and construction beyond the automotive world. His F355 is surely going to fly.


Bloozberry MSG #39, 08-23-2012 07:09 AM
      Aw shucks... thanks YF for the compliments... but I'm starting to think you're buttering me up to ask me some huge favor.

The frame extension looks great, though at this stage it seems like an awful lot of work for such a small increase in wheelbase. Don't get me wrong, it's definitely worth the effort because once you get the body on, those extra 3 inches change the car's proportions in a way that makes all the difference. Keep up the good work.

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 08-23-2012).]

Austrian Import (maximilian_ledworowski@csumb.edu) MSG #40, 08-23-2012 02:35 PM
      Yarmouth, since you're already in Rhino, will you reuse the stock struts, or will you redesign the suspension?

If the latter, please visit my thread, and share your insights either here, or there:
Redesign a Fiero suspension for better geometry (Solidworks, ProEngineer, etc)



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #41, 08-23-2012 05:21 PM
      Hi Austrian Import

I've read through the thread you attached. Wow... that is quite an interesting discussion accompaning the development. To be honest, I am only a humble marine engineer and the automotive world is certainly not my field of expertise. My plans are to simply replace the existing OEM suspension and brakes with aftermarket pieces that improve the handling and performance slightly yet retaining the original geometry as much as possible, keeping in mind I am doing an F355 that's low and wide. I do not possess the knowledge or experience to go much beyond that point. However, as an engineer I find the various threads fascinating and educational and am not above incorporating more significant improvements should they become available and I have the technical backup and support to implement them.

Thanks for asking btw.


F355spider (nixon@itexas.net) MSG #42, 09-08-2012 10:43 PM
      Needs bumped to get in my post list.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #43, 09-29-2012 06:51 PM
      With the 3" chassis stretch almost completed, the next step is the 3" stretch of the engine cradle. However, those pictures are on another memory stick somewhere here on my desk so until I find them, I'll post details of the progress to reinforce the chassis in way of the rocker panels. As you may recall, this project will be a 355 Spider so I have been researching and reading as much info as possible on the topic of chassis reinforcement......... and there are certainly many schools of thought on this topic. With some input and suggestions from other forum members, I have designed what I hope will produce a strong structure that resists bending and twisting without reducing ground clearance or interfering with the 355 body.

The reinforcement structure will be fabricated from a combination of 3" x 3" x 1/8" HSS and 3" x 1 1/2" x 1/8" HSS with 1/4" plate gussets in the corners for added strength. The front end will follow the curved surface of the wheelwell / A pillar, replace the factory sheet metal rockers, pass through the B pillar and then proceed upward at 60 deg to intersect the upper rear frame rail just forward of the rear wheel.




I know it may be hard to visualize the part without the drawing of the chassis included, however, that part of the 3D model is still in progress and I hate to post incomplete drawings.

The drivers side was started first by removing the original rocker sheet metal. I left about an inch of the top so that when the new structure is fitted, it will be at the same height of the original rocker panel body work. I wanted to be sure the new structure was not so high as to interfer with the 355 rocker body panel.



We used a laser to shoot a straight line around the A pillar and B pillar before laying down some masking tape to assist in cutting the correct profile.




The bottom edge of the original rocker sheet metal was left as well and then folded upward to give some extra support to the new structure. The new structure will be welded along the top line of the rocker sheet metal, along the bottom flange of the sheet metal as well as a few plug welds along the inside door sill.




It was also necessary to remove the seatbelt anchor point. This will be added to the new structure in the factory location. This is a part most Fiero enthusiasts never see and never want to see.




Once all the required sheet metal was removed, we test fitted the 3" x 3" x 1/8" HSS to see how it fits at the pillars, along the door sill and at the upper rear frame rail.






We are happy with the initial fit so now we will fabricate the structure completely and then fit it to the chassis and secure it in place. With the design and arrangement of the structure, the entire part can be fabricated and welded 100% off the car before final installation.

Once it is complete, we'll post pictures of the final installation of both sides. The next step will be to design and fabricate a structure to secure to the engine side of the firewall which will strengthen the chassis transverely by tieing both the upper and lower frame rails together. Once this is done, it will be time to make the big cut and remove the roof.

edit: remove photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

fieroguru MSG #44, 09-29-2012 07:39 PM
      Good job with the cutting... very small gaps between the sheet metal and the new tube. That will help a bunch when it comes to welding everything back together.

Just a suggestion, you might want to install the fuel fill tube to make sure it clears the reinforcement.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #45, 09-29-2012 07:49 PM
      Thanks Fieroguru, we tried hard to get a nice clean cut on the sheet metal. When it comes time to tack and weld, it will press tight against the new structure I am hoping. There was some extra sheet metal inside those pillars that were spot welded and caulked. I don't know how they ever got the welding robot inside. ha-ha

The fuel fill is certainly a concern. I've measured the Blooz's car twice now just to be sure it will fit. It's going to be close for sure but with the body work being so wide back there I think it's just going to fit. Might only be able to get the tip of the gas nozzle in though Also, the vertical frame will line in under the upper frame rail which buys me a few more inches under the body work for the fuel fill.


BV MotorSports (sbvincent@yahoo.com) MSG #46, 09-29-2012 09:25 PM
      I noticed you are planning to run the HT suspension. I have it installed on my 88GT. The tubular fron suspension w/ coil overs is pretty sweet. My only complaint is how low the low mount hangs for the coil over. Its REALLY low. Just an FYI.

Awesome work so far!


Bloozberry MSG #47, 09-30-2012 09:50 PM
      What a great idea using a laser to find a straight line on those curved parts. I mean once you see someone doing it, it seems an obvious means, but it's thinking about it in the first place that's the innovative part. Super clean lines on those cuts by the way. I see you're letting the boys do the grunt work. I bet you just knew they'd eventually come in handy.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #48, 10-01-2012 04:56 PM
      Thanks Blooz, the laser is just a hardware store one but it is so easy to shoort the lines. I need to get a little tripod for it.

Yes, the boys are doing as much of the work as possible.... under close supervision btw. But they are really enjoying it and will learn so much about the car.

I managed to drive fro Yarmouth to Boston with 6 boat models in glass display cases today without a single mishap so hopefully the windshields will make it home just as well. Keep your fingers crossed.


Bloozberry MSG #49, 10-01-2012 05:06 PM
      Lots of bubble wrap... lots and lots of bubble wrap. BTW, if you break one, it's yours.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #50, 10-01-2012 05:11 PM
      I am hoping that they are still in the crate for shipping.

Just to be sure, I'll mark them before I leave so we know whose is whose when they arrive ha-ha-ha


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #51, 10-17-2012 08:51 PM
      Well the extended windshields are finally home safe and sound. It was certainly a group effort starting with 355Fiero and Steve from PA together with ALLTRBO, Bloozberry and myself. But 2800 km round trip as 30 hours of highway driving plus a 3 hour ferry ride across the Bay of Fundy each way got them from MD to rural Nova Scotia intact. They are in safe keeping with Blooz for now.

4 extended 355 windshields


Crated and ready to load


Loaded and ready for the 1400 km ride to Nova Scotia


Now that the little road trip is over, it's time to get back to the chassis modifications.
The 3" x 3" x 1/8" HSS is cut and fitted along the rocker and up to the upper rear frame rail. There will be gussets fitted at the corner and a 1/8" thick mounting plate at the intersection of the new tubing and the frame rail. There will also be a bracket to the lower frame rail eventually.

Hopefully when we do the passenger side, I can work on my right side tan.

With this fitted temporarily, we'll start work on the A pillar connection next.


When its done, it should look very much like the 3D image posted above.

edit: remove photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #52, 10-20-2012 03:38 PM
      As I stated earlier, following the 3" chassis stretch I completed a 3" stretch of the engine cradle. I cut the cradle just forward of the front cross member and the cut was made vertical with the cradle level on the table. Each 3" extension was fabricated from two pieces of 1/8" plate that were bent so that they interlock in the same manner as the actual cradle construction. With the extensions inserted in the 3" gap in the cradle, the cradle bushings moved forward without raising or lowering the center of the bushings. I also decided to add fish plates ( doubler plates) on the top and outside surface of each cradle extension, just for added strength.

3D Model showing proposed extensions with doubler plates



We double checked all measurements while on the jig before final welding.


The extensions were given a coat of primer for now as I suspect there will be more cradle modifications later once I finalize the engine / transmission choice.



Bloozberry MSG #53, 10-20-2012 04:55 PM
      Great looking work! In fact, I'd like to see more of it... as in more pictures and bigger pictures! Are you using PIP? If so, you can upload photos up to 1000 pixels wide, by any height, as long as they don't exceed 300K. Give us more!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #54, 10-20-2012 05:37 PM
      Thanks Blooz for the vote of confidence. I am using PIP and I have alot more pictures but I am having a hard time getting the maximum picture dimensions allowable without going over on the max file size. And when I turn down the resolution to reduce the file size, then the pictures don't look so good. Is there a secret to getting the maximum quality on the posts? I'm using photoshop and I know I should probably crop more. I figure by page 5 or 6 I'll have it down pat.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-20-2012).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #55, 10-20-2012 05:38 PM
     
 
quote
Give us more!


I'll second that motion. Very nice work. Well thought out, planned and executed!

HAGO!


fieroguru MSG #56, 10-20-2012 07:10 PM
      Looking good!

One recommendation while you are cutting/welding on the cradle... Weld in solid bushing sleeves. In the front you can use some 1/2" ID tube and large washers and in the rear you just need to weld in some spacers.

[This message has been edited by fieroguru (edited 10-20-2012).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #57, 10-20-2012 07:37 PM
      Thanks for the support Sage and Fieroguru. Do you have a photo or a link showing the solid bushings as you describe?

fieroguru MSG #58, 10-20-2012 07:42 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Thanks for the support Sage and Fieroguru. Do you have a photo or a link showing the solid bushings as you describe?


Sorry, no pics. A friend of mine did the weld in bushing mod 7 or 8 years ago but I didn't take any pictures.


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #59, 10-20-2012 07:50 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Thanks Blooz for the vote of confidence. I am using PIP and I have alot more pictures but I am having a hard time getting the maximum picture dimensions allowable without going over on the max file size. And when I turn down the resolution to reduce the file size, then the pictures don't look so good. Is there a secret to getting the maximum quality on the posts? I'm using photoshop and I know I should probably crop more. I figure by page 5 or 6 I'll have it down pat.



I use ACDSee to shrink and resize my files, but should be similar on PS. When saving images, you should be able to change the compression rate (for jpeg). I usually change it to about 65%. Plenty of resolution for forum and the files are usually less than 100k.

Bob

PS cool build..More pictures needed



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #60, 10-20-2012 08:14 PM
      Thanks Fieroguru. I'll do up a drawing and see what I can scrounge up for material at work. I never really considered solid bushings on this project. I know earlier I mentioned still being undecided about engine/ trans set up but reading and rereading your thread sure makes the decision easier. Great documentation for us " less experienced" builders.

I'll keep trying with your suggested file compression RCR. I think my biggest problem is I have 3 different cameras on the go ( mine, son, daughter) and they all have different aspect ratios I think. I should really just settle on one camera and stick with it.


355Fiero MSG #61, 10-20-2012 09:49 PM
      Hey Yarmouth Fiero.

I am glad Bloozberry convinced you to grab two extended screens. You will not be sorry to do the extra work for the much better end look. I wanted one or two of those myself but I just wasn't willing to take the chance of having more windscreens being broken again in shipping....

That reinforcing is looking really good as well, keep up the great work.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #62, 10-20-2012 10:07 PM
      Hi Don

I am glad I went ahead with the purchase as well Don. I know they will certainly add that special look to our 355's. The windshields looked to be very good quality and luckily they all made it safely back to NS. To be honest, I doubt they would have in the hands of a random shipper. Thanks again for the heads up on the purchase. I opted not to get the extended tray. We'll mock up a welded in tray .........eventually.


Bloozberry MSG #63, 10-20-2012 10:08 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
I never really considered solid bushings on this project. I know earlier I mentioned still being undecided about engine/ trans set up but reading and rereading your thread sure makes the decision easier.


I'd just like to suggest that before you finalize the location for the solid bushings, that you should consider whether or not you will want to raise the cradle to reduce the wheel to fender gap issue on the fiberglass kit you are considering.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #64, 10-20-2012 10:43 PM
      I agree Blooz. As we have discussed, I need to match my 85 chassis to your final chassis geometry as close as possible so that the fit of the 355 body is suitable. I still have a ton of work on the chassis reinforcements to keep me busy for a while yet so I'll hold off on finallizing the suspension geometry for now.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #65, 10-27-2012 05:46 PM
      Today we worked on the drivers side chassis reinforcement and got all the pieces fabricated and tacked together. It sure would be nice to have the car about 3 feet higher off the floor when working on the chassis. I'll add a car hoist to my Christmas wish list. I'm sure I'm not the first.

The 3" x 3" x 1/8" HSS fit very well tucked in where the original chassis structure once existed.



At the front end I used 1.5" x 3" x 1/8" HSS and made relief cuts to allow the tubing to follow the shape of the front side of the A pillar. I'll cap off the top end with a piece of plate during final welding.



At the back I used the 3" x 3" x 1/8" HSS and tapered the top end down to match the width of the upper frame rail. I added a doubler plate between the end of the tubing and the frame rail to make a better welded connection and help transfer the load to the frame rail. I also added a gusset at the lower end of the tubing. I'll add a second gusset to the inside surface once I take it all off the chassis for welding.



It all looks pretty robust at this point. The key will be to get a good welded connection between the chassis and the tube frame.




I have a gusset for the front end but I suspect it may interfere with the door so I'll leave it off until the body is being fitted.



The obvious question with this reinforcement is regarding the location of the fuel fill. I measured the loaction on Blooz's 355 body and found it to be 19" aft of the door frame. I think this is pretty close to the fiero fuel fill location.



I mocked up the loaction using this distance and my fiero fuel fill pipe. It appears that the fill / vent pipes will clear the new frame reinforcement....barely.





I also took the time to do a little inspirational decorating in the garage. The boys have decided our project car will be gloss black with gloss black wheels with a machined lip. They feel it looks " Sinister".



Next step is to repeat this exercise for the passanger side and then have everything welded prior to final fitting to the chassis. Luckily, it can be removed and fitted in one piece.



Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #66, 10-27-2012 11:27 PM
     

Looks great so far.

Any plans/need to tie the added stiffners together side to side?

Doesn't seem like there would be any need, but curious as to your thoughts on it.

HAGO!


85LAMB (linck777@netzero.com) MSG #67, 10-27-2012 11:43 PM
      very nice work

If you don't mind...

I would suggest bolting a door before welding the lower brace.
I am afraid that it might not open all the way since it might hit the brace.

Keep up the good work


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #68, 10-28-2012 06:51 AM
      Sage, with regard to side to side stiffening, yes, I am planning on connecting the new vertical frame to the rear lower frame rail. Also, I will be installing a triangulated truss of 1" x 1 1/2" x 1/8" HSS against the back of the firewall to connect all 4 frame rails together to add transverse support to the chassis. In the front of the car, I will incorporate transverse stiffening in the extended windshield lower support. These additions will certainly increase the chassis stiffness above what the current roof structure is providing.



With regard to the door test fit 85LAMB, the drivers side door is sitting just out of view of the pictures. By the end of the day, the boys were itching to head out with friends to cruise so I didn't get a chance to test fit it, perhaps today though. I forget what its like to be young and have a life.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-28-2012).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #69, 10-28-2012 10:01 AM
      Exellent! Kind of what came to mind for me, but much better design!

Not sure how "heavy" the stock would have to be, seems like it just needs to tie everything together, that the brunt of work will be taken on by your rocker rails. Will sure help with frame twist! You shouldn't have any after that's complete. Negligable at any rate.

Glad to hear you don't have the boys chained in place, after all, "all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy".

Very nice work!

HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #70, 10-28-2012 01:18 PM
      Sage, I agree that perhaps the 1" x 1 1/2" may be a little over kill. It happen to be what I had in stock at work at the time but I may look for some 3/4" x 1" instead. When the firewall truss is complete I plan to cover it with insulation and a heat shield. I have a supplier that makes our exhaust blankets and they do a silver silicone finish that would look very nice on the firewall.

Bloozberry MSG #71, 10-29-2012 01:08 PM
      Something that I would consider doing once you get to the rear firewall bracing, is to tack the firewall sheet metal to the braces as well. From experience with my SBC kit, I've found that long distance drives can be fatiguing due to a low frequency droning or booming sound which I believe is transmitted into the cabin by the rear firewall resonating with the V8 frequencies. Changing the stiffness of the firewall back there by tacking it to the braces would certainly change the sound transmission characteristics and may very well dampen the boominess I experience in my car. Just a suggestion.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #72, 10-29-2012 04:25 PM
      Thanks Blooz. I agree that the firewall is certainly built like a drum. There will be an opportunity to plug well the firewall to various locations on the truss stiffener once its in place. That will also add a little more strength to the whole assembly I hope.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #73, 10-30-2012 06:06 PM
      Well I finally got the drivers side door back on to check the clearance with the new chassis frame. Its suprising how heavy those doors are....... well that is what my 15 year old son claims.

There is almost 3" of clearance between the fwd edge of the door and the aft side of the frame with the door closed.



As the door opens, it moves forward slightly and inward as well.



The door body panel roughly follows the edge of the door structure and while it does add thickness, causing the door to swing forward and inward a bit more, it appears that the finished door should clear additional frame structure with room to spare. I may even be able to fit a modified gusset for added strength.



As the curved frame on the fwd side of the A pillar lies snug in the recess of the wheel well, there should not be any issues with tire clearance on the finished car.

Photos of 355 body compliments of Blooz.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-30-2012).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #74, 10-31-2012 06:00 PM
      Happy Halloween.....



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #75, 11-04-2012 06:41 PM
      Today the boys and I spent the day with Blooz in his magical workshop. There are so many cool projects and items to ask questions about that it's hard to stay on task at times. Btw.... I'm as guilty of this as the boys.

The activity today was to make a template of the new extended glass for our 355 projects. We have 4 new windshields still in the crate so we opened it up and carefully removed one for use as a guide for our template. I could hear Blooz whispering " this one is yours".... over and over.
You would think we were handling human organs for transplant the way we gingerly extracted the glass from the crate and moved it to the waiting bench. ( listen for the choir of angels)

Using 1/8" corregated plastic, we traced the glass outline on two separate sheets of plastic which would then be glued together to provide a stiffer template. The templates were cut out and trimmed to the desired shape.

Once the two sheets were cut to the desired shape and glued together with a hot glue gun, they were pressed flat against the glass to give the correct shape and then a batten was cut from the same material and glued on edge with the hot glue. It created a suprisingly stiff template of the windshield.

Once the templates were made, we again gingerly returned the windshield to its crate for safe keeping. There are no pictures of this because all 4 of us were holding the glass.

I did snap a picture of the label on the windshield before we were done. The quality appears to be very high and I think they will make an awesome addition to our 355 projects.



With the template home, we were quick to try in on our chassis. I am very happy with the fit and the template will make it much easier to build a suitable lower glass support without handling the actual glass any more than necessary.



Blooz also scored me some awesome parts for our SBC installation, including a flywheel, adapter plate, waterpump, starter and various mounts and brackets. Thanks again for your help Blooz.

edit: remove photos of family members

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #76, 11-04-2012 08:55 PM
      These 6 windshields travelled from Pennsylvania, down to Maryland (where one of two getting off-loaded got broken), then the remaining four travelled up the Eastern Seaboard to Maine, across the border to New Brunswick, then finally on a 3 hour ferry trip to Nova Scotia... 1000 miles total with nary a nick or chip. After hearing of ALLTRBO having three extended windshields being broken in transit, I think I'd rather give a kidney than have to go through that again. But I could just see it (now that they're nicely nestled in the shop)... one of us tripping on an extension cord while moving one ten feet. That's why I kept whispering "yours, yours, yours".

I'm glad we (well, more like boys and you) went through that process of making the plastic templates though. That was a great idea. Much easier to work with than the actual glass


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #77, 11-05-2012 05:04 AM
      I agree Blooz, it was certainly a long, uneventful journey getting them back to NS. And to then have an "incident" the last few feet would certainly be heartbreaking.

One thing I forgot to do was measure the width of the bottom frit as it does indeed look wide. Although looking at the template from inside the car, the extended glass does infact " extend" well forward over the dash so we should be good. I guess we can always get an additional seat cushion upholstered with our interiors to boost us up a little in the drivers seat.

When I was 16, my dad had to hose clamp a wooden block on the clutch pedal of this 77 Dodge Ram Club Cab because I couldn't reach to shift the 3 on the tree. We always have that option if we find ourselves boosted too high.


Bloozberry MSG #78, 11-05-2012 06:44 AM
      I'd help you out if I knew what a "frit" was. (I know what an apple fritter is... are they related?)

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #79, 11-05-2012 06:54 AM
      Oops....sorry. In the shipbuilding world, we install frameless glass that has a baked ceramic black boarder that protects the adhesive from UV damage. We call this boarder a frit or ceramic frit. I assume our windshields have an adhesive or painted boarder that does the same job. Is there an automotive term for this boarder?

Edit: An apple fritter is much more delicious yet can also coat the inside of your windshield if you aren't careful pulling out of the Tim's drive through.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 11-05-2012).]

Corpsmen Ed (eadams444@sbcglobal.net) MSG #80, 12-06-2012 04:22 PM
      Hey, thanks for stopping by my build thread. Yours is looking sweet too. I will definitely be following the progress, and sharing it with my boys to show them what REAL "helping" looks like.

Bloozberry MSG #81, 12-06-2012 04:26 PM
      I don't know... 1 month and one day since the last post... it's awful quiet in this thread. Time for some progress!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #82, 12-06-2012 09:36 PM
      Hi Blooze, I know what you mean. I was commenting on Corpsmen Ed's thread today and realized I had fallen back to page 15.

We have been busy cutting out the rocker sheet metal on the passanger side, building the new passanger side chassis reinforcement as well as looking at the required extended windshield mods and scratching my head till it hurts. That little sub-project is going to have to wait a few months. We've also been finishing off the sheet metal on the chassis extension. That takes alot of welding and grinding to make it look almost factory finish.

I've also been designing a suitable method to rotate the chassis upside down to assist in welding the underside of the chassis reinforcements. While it's upside down, I will touch up the chassis underside in the fuel tank area. I am also thinking about installing a flat panel bottom atleast in the area of the cabin and as far forward as possible. It won't be as extensive as the F355 but I think it would look pretty cool none the less. I have been test cutting various thicknesses of UHMW sheet and adding a tongue and groove joint where panels meet each other. I think black UHMW with large head countersunk SS bolts mounted flush would look pretty slick. I'm thinking 3/8" thick panels and while the weight may be significant, it will be very low on the car and as we know, the CG of the car moves towards the additional weight. This plan will require adding a few threaded pads under the chassis to secure the panels too. It will be easier to finalize the design once the car is upside down.

To Corpsmen Ed, keep up the great effort on your project and don't be discouraged if you can't keep the momentum of interest going every night of the week with the boys. When there is something interesting to see or do, they'll be more than interested to help out. We all know how hard it can be at times to push ahead when a task seems daunting or progress is slow. And don't listen to the nay sayers. I have never built a car in my life but there is a huge resource of experienced builders on this forum that are more than willing to share their wealth of knowledge. Just keep posting your progress and include lots of pics along the way.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #83, 01-01-2013 07:54 PM
      Well I guess since it's the first day of the year, it's time to post an update.

The drivers side rocker reinforcement is welded together and ready for sandblasting and priming before final welding to chassis and the passenger side is almost tacked and ready for welding. To help provide a secure welded attachment to the chassis in the area of the A pillar, I decided to add a flange to the frame. This will bridge the gap as the A pillar sheet metal actually angles away from the new frame.



I designed a flange using 3/4" x 1/8" flat bar and formed it to match the shape of the frame and the A pillar. I don't think the Fiero chassis has a 6" stretch of straight sheet metal that hasn't been given a stamped bend, dimple, hole, flange or boss. This really becomes apparent when you try to measure and drawing a part or fasten a flat surface to some portion of the chassis. I think the chassis designers must have been paid a bonus for every change in sheet metal orientation they could incorporate in the final structure.

Here is the flange design.



And here is the final flange tacked to the frame.



And here is the final rocker frame in place on the drivers side.



Here are a couple shots of us welding. My youngest son claims he's the better welder. I think he is just more flexible.




Next step is to get the passenger side rocker frame done..... when its not -10 degrees C in the garage.


Bloozberry MSG #84, 01-01-2013 09:13 PM
      Wow. Super clean looking fabrication Yarmouth. I can't wait to get back to metal fabrication again... drawing on the computer is getting old.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #85, 01-02-2013 08:13 AM
      Thanks Blooz. I agree, while measuring and drawing can be rewarding and a great way to learn the intricate details of a car, actual fabrication is much more satisfying when you can stand back afterwards and admire your work ( or be disgusted with the results and rip it out to do over...ha-ha-ha-ha).

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #86, 01-02-2013 07:47 PM
      Flange is a great addition! Really makes the stiffner an integral part of the original structure. "Extreme gusset" you might call it? I'm not an engineer so don't know the technical term for it, but it just looks like it "belongs" there to me. I expect your finished chassis will have no more flex than a factory stock space frame...maybe less!

Nice work!

HAGO!


fieroaddicted (service@parkstreetrv.ca) MSG #87, 01-02-2013 08:02 PM
      NIce work! The car is looking great! Can't wait to see more progress on this. Also nice to see there are a couple other nova scotian's on PFF as well. Have a great new year.
Troy


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #88, 01-02-2013 08:54 PM
      Thanks Sage, I'm really hoping that the chassis atleast retains the original strength/ stiffness once the roof is off. I know the key is to get a strong connection between the chassis and the additional frames so hopefully the little details like gussets and flanges will do the trick.

Hi fieroaddicted, I guess there are a few NS members here now. We'll have to organize a valley get together when things defrost this spring.

Along with the chassis upgrades, we'll start work on the V8 Santa brought us. Its only 12" long so maybe I can do a longitudinal installation afterall.



fieroaddicted (service@parkstreetrv.ca) MSG #89, 01-02-2013 09:19 PM
     
 
quote
We'll have to organize a valley get together when things defrost this spring.


That sounds great! let me know if and when. Bixby (wade) is in Truro. I talk to him a lot, but have never got up to meet him yet. He has quite a few parts (if you are looking) and has done a few swaps.
Troy


Bloozberry MSG #90, 01-02-2013 09:44 PM
      Troy: PM sent.

Yarmouth: I'll try to round up a few mice to power that V8.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #91, 01-03-2013 07:07 AM
      Great idea Troy. I believe there are a few PFF members in Halifax and I am sure Blooz knows a few as well. Have you posted any pics of your car yet? You can put them in my thread if you haven't started one already.

Thanks Blooz. I can always add a longer crank handle so we can get a higher mpci output ( mouse per cubic inch).

I think the transparent V8 will add a cool factor to my swap


fieroaddicted (service@parkstreetrv.ca) MSG #92, 01-03-2013 11:26 AM
     
 
quote
Have you posted any pics of your car yet? You can put them in my thread if you haven't started one already.


I posted a few of my engine progress so far, but it annoys the crap out of me trying to put pics on here. lol I can't seem to get the hang of it. Most of what I have taken are on facebook...it's a lot easier. lol


fieroaddicted (service@parkstreetrv.ca) MSG #93, 01-03-2013 07:02 PM
     
 
quote
it annoys the crap out of me trying to put pics on here.


I finally figured it out and added a few pics on my build thread. BTW do either you or bloozberry know anyone who would want the old 2.8L from my car?
troy


Bloozberry MSG #94, 01-03-2013 08:00 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by fieroaddicted:
BTW do either you or bloozberry know anyone who would want the old 2.8L from my car?


PM sent



fieroaddicted (service@parkstreetrv.ca) MSG #95, 01-10-2013 06:14 PM
      Anything new going on with your build Yarmouth?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #96, 01-13-2013 03:40 PM
      Its been a busy start to the year with work and extra cirricular activities but we got the passanger side rocker frame built and ready for final welding. I'm a little meticulous so we take it pretty slow making sure we are happy with every cut.







I also picked up a 4' x 8' x 1/2" Black UHMW that we'll be using for the flat bottom panels later in the build once the chassis gets flipped over.



Saturday the boys and I headed up to Martock for some skiing. But the line ups were long and slow moving and $250 seemed like a bit much for a few hours on the slopes. So, like any car enthusiast, we headed to the city and spent $150 at Kartbahn for some indoor Kart racing and then headed over to Princess Auto to pick up a few supplies and a new pedistal grinder. Now that was money well spent.



Next step is to fabricate the firewall reinforcement truss.


fieroaddicted (service@parkstreetrv.ca) MSG #97, 01-13-2013 03:59 PM
      geez man, very nice work. Things are looking great!
troy


Bloozberry MSG #98, 01-14-2013 01:03 PM
      Nice work reshaping those rails. Keeping it neat and tidy goes a long way to getting it certified later on.

I'm not sure what you're you're devising for a flat bottom using the UHMW plastic, but you might end up with overheating problems if you close off the cradle. The higher pressure air flowing under the car gets sucked up through the cradle openings and into the engine bay by the lower pressure air flowing over top of the car. That airflow though the engine bay is important to keep things cool... although up here in NS it's probably not as important as in AZ. The airflow would benefit from a plate under the gas tank though.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #99, 01-14-2013 07:31 PM
      Thanks Fieroaddicted....... it's a long slow process but alot of fun along the way.

Hi Blooz... for the flat bottom panels I am only thinking the bottom of the cab and then narrow up to the front cross member and just to the forward rear cradle mounts so the engine compartment is still wide open. I'm thinking 180 headers on the SBC so there is going to be alot of extra exhaust pipe and heat down there. In the area of the fuel tank, that would be a separate panel incase there was a need to drop the tank. I think this will be an exercise to add a little personal touch more than improving aerodynamics under the car as its pretty flat down there already.

On another note, has anyone ever looked at laying the radiator back rather than forward as the stock orientation? Is there any benifit to ducting the air through the F355 front nose opening to the radiator and then down under the tub?


Bloozberry MSG #100, 01-14-2013 07:59 PM
      WHAT?? You're not going to use mid-mounted radiators?!! Sacrilege!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #101, 01-14-2013 08:11 PM
      I know... I know..... but all this chassis reinforcement is cutting down space where they should be going. If I could fit them between the additional frames and the body, I'm not sure where the air flow will go. Will yours be ducted into the engine bay or the rear wheel wells or downward ahead of the rear wheels?

Bloozberry MSG #102, 01-14-2013 08:52 PM
      I'm thinking they'll be ducted partially through louvered wheel well linings, and partly in the tunnel above the linings and wheel inside the rear quarter panel, and ducted and exhausted through the rear tail light panel (which will be a grill a-la F355 F1).

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #103, 01-14-2013 09:13 PM
      Well it might still be possible since the new frames are inboard of the B pillar and thus completely inline with the door scoops. I may have to have them as tall and narrow as possible. Is there a good source for OEM radiators with applicable dimensions? I'd hate to have to go the custom route.

Bloozberry MSG #104, 01-14-2013 10:34 PM
      If you can't tuck them into the space behind the b-pillar, I'm not sure you'll have enough surface area to get the amount of cooling you'll need from tall narrow rads. For example, the aftermarket Honda Civic radiators I bought will completely fill in the space between the fiberglass body and the frame rail. They're rated for approximately 200 HP each so anything smaller than that is going to be rated for less cooling capacity and could give you problems.

You probably will have to stick with the front mounted radiator given those reinforcements. A good rule of thumb is to try to maintain the same overall surface area of the original rad but I've used a stock front mounted Fiero rad in my 308 replica for years so you should be OK with that.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #105, 01-20-2013 10:28 PM
      With the rocker frame reinforcements being welded before final installation, we are now proceeding with the transverse reinforcement of the engine bay side of the firewall. When the roof is removed, a significant portion of the transverse structure will be lost, even though most of the roof is missing for the factory sunroof already. Still, we want to add as much transverse support as possible. Also, I expect much of the lower trunk structure to be removed in the future for the exhaust system.

Originally, I had thought about installing a triangulated truss structure made with 1" x 1" x 0.100" HSS. This would tie both the upper and lower frame rails together as well as stiffen the firewall. But after talking with Bloozberry about the engine deck hinge locations for the 355 engine deck cover, it became apparent that the stock Fiero hinges and supporting hinge boxes would have to be moved anyway. With this is mind, I decided to rethink the design of the additional transverse structure. With the hinge supports removed, it allowed me the option of installing a substantial transverse beam across the top of the firewall between the upper frame rails. The preliminary design is a 3" x 3" x 1/8" HSS with a forward sloping face angled at 17 degrees to match the firewall inclination. As well, I added a 1" x 3" x 1/8" HSS below the beam and angled to tie the lower frame rails to this beam. Then a triangular shaped gusset of 1/8" plate on each side to tie the whole structure together. The beauty of this structure is that it will allow me to install 2 roll over hoops behind the seats and these will be welded directly to the new structure. This has always been a desire of mine since we decided on a spider...... and I'll have 2 teenagers taking turns at the wheel some day.

Here is a quick view of the preliminary design. My new Rhino Rev 5 has a ton of cool rendering options but I'm still trying to figure them out... thus the poor quality rendering tonight.



So with this design in mind, we began removing the hinge boxes and numerous equipment attachment points that GM had so thoughtfully spot welded all over the fire wall. I don't think there is a more soul sucking job than drilling out spot welds.

Good thing they don't have to be reused.



The now " Naked" firewall.



Next step is to remove all the leftover spot weld reminents with the blending disk.

As a side note, it was also a good afternoon to work on a school project. Teach a kid to drive and your tank will always be empty. Teach a kid to build his own car and he'll be able to fabricate DNA for his grade 9 science project.

edit: remove photos of family members

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Driver_WT (wtaylor@impactgrp.ca) MSG #106, 01-21-2013 01:56 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by fieroaddicted:


That sounds great! let me know if and when. Bixby (wade) is in Truro. I talk to him a lot, but have never got up to meet him yet. He has quite a few parts (if you are looking) and has done a few swaps.
Troy


I am in Pictou County (just outside New Glasgow). 1984 Fiero with 355 sbc and 4 speed. Doing some work this winter to get a little more power and I have the parts for the rear GT conversion.

Wade



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #107, 01-21-2013 02:22 PM
      Hi Driver_WT...... I would love to see your car this summer. As you know, we're planning a SBC install as well. We'll certainly have to find a central location and get together for a bar-b-que and car admiration session.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #108, 01-21-2013 03:57 PM
      Here is another view of the roll over hoops. I really should be getting my work done.




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #109, 01-21-2013 09:37 PM
      I think a set of hoops might look ok on a F355 Spider although I have yet to see a 355 with them. Are there any reputable suppliers of chrome moly roll over hoops that might have a selection of off-the-shelf designs?




Bloozberry MSG #110, 01-21-2013 09:51 PM
      Very nice! The chalk and charcoal look is really cool and makes it very easy to see what's what. I think the roll bars can enhance the look of the car. Just think of all the Miatas that were retrofitted with them... even though they weren't part of the original design, they improved the look tremendously in my opinion. They also make a lot of sense.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #111, 01-21-2013 10:00 PM
      Thanks Blooze. This Rhino 5 has lots of cool new features and it allows the non artistic type like me to produce something that I could never do by hand. It also is a little easier to look at when you are trying to capture style. The glaring colors of a 3D model can be hard to look at sometimes. It will be cool to see it develop as I slowly draw out each piece and add it to the drawing.

I agree that the hoops may add a touch of uniqueness ( is this a word?) and if they are done right and installed correctly, they'll hopefully add some much need safety to the car. They certanly won't be bolt on. I've already discussed with my local powder coater about the possibility of getting the transverse beam with hoops welded in place into his oven. Then the rest of the structure can be welded to the beam and the whole assembly installed into the chassis.

Anybody with experience in this exercise?


Reallybig MSG #112, 01-21-2013 10:40 PM
      When I'm working on something custom and want to add an off the shelf part, I usually try to make the part fit without modifying it by designing my brackets to accept the part unaltered. That being said, I don't know what's available out there, what you want exactly, and wheather there is room to modify/add brackets. Just a thought from my end.
I love what you've done and am looking forward to seeing your progress!

Food for thought... http://www.google.ca/search...sAQ&biw=1440&bih=756



Fierology MSG #113, 01-21-2013 11:23 PM
      Just splendid!





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #114, 01-22-2013 09:03 AM
      Thanks Reallybig and Fierology. I am glad you like it so far. Still a long-g-g-g-g-g way to go though.

With regard to the hoops, I would like to buy some aftermarket chrome moly units that have long stocks that can pass through a stubstantial tranverse beam and welded top and bottom. This beam would then tie into the upper frame rails directly and also lower frame rails via 1 1/2" x 3" x 1/8" HSS. These would also tie into the transverse beam via gusset plates. Note, I left the upper frame rails off the first image to show the inside of the transverse beam. I am hoping that the structure wil be adequate as is so that I don't have to add rear braces to the hoops, as seen on many cars. I welcome comments from those who have installed rollover hoops.




Driver_WT (wtaylor@impactgrp.ca) MSG #115, 01-22-2013 10:42 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Hi Driver_WT...... I would love to see your car this summer. As you know, we're planning a SBC install as well. We'll certainly have to find a central location and get together for a bar-b-que and car admiration session.


That would be great.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #116, 01-22-2013 11:16 AM
      Of course, it will be a couple years before I can show up driving anything that resembles a finished car.

Maybe Blooz will lend me one of his many ol' beaters he has laying around for the weekend...ha-ha-ha-ha


Bloozberry MSG #117, 01-24-2013 04:24 PM
      How's this?



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #118, 01-24-2013 09:11 PM
      Seriously..... one white pedal Blooz? Where is the little black one with the shiny rims that I saw down by the Koi pond ??????

Maybe I'll just bring my own. I told you I was partial to carbon.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #119, 01-25-2013 12:18 PM
      Still working on the roll over hoops and associated supporting structure. The top of the firewall is bent in such a way as to form a supporting surface for the rear window. As well, there is an additional piece of bent sheet metal installed to give added support to the rear window structure. By adding my proposed transverse frame to support the roll over hoops, the additional frame will protrude down slightly into the engine bay. I've shown the stock engine deck hinge support boxes for reference.



Since I am building a Spider, the rear glass will soon be gone so I am considering trimming the flange off the top of the firewall and also removing the additional sheet metal support that is there. This will allow me to raise the proposed transverse frame by about 1.44" and allow the frame to tuck up under the firewall sheet metal nicely. Again, I've added the stock hinge boxes to help show the position of everything. With the hinge boxes removed, the lower edge of the new transverse frame will be about 3.814" higher than the stock hinge boxes. As they seem to be quite intrusive to the engine compartment, I think this modification will be a noticeable improvement. As well, the new transverse frame will provide a secure location for the new 355 engine cover hinges.



Any thoughts on this design modification?

With regard to the roll over hoop design and construction, I am pleased with my current design as shown. I have been using this document to guide my design with regard to dimensions and material.



Edit to add a view showing the stock firewall structure before modifications so its easier to see what the heck I'm talking about.



I have a length of 1.9" dia. x 0.120" ERW tubing that I will have formed into my hoop design. Our tubing bender has a die for 2" tubing so I will do a test bend to see if it turns out ok.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #120, 01-25-2013 02:50 PM
      By removing the stock "Z" sheet metal that forms the bottom of the stock crossmember, your new metal tube would need at least a 3" height to match up properly with the LH & RH upper frame rails at either end. In fact I measure 80mm between the top of your new crossmember and the bottom of the upper side rails. ( I'm working on a similar design to act as the forward mounting structure for horizontal, fore and aft shocks, so I'm familiar with the area.) So that begs the question: How are you planning to tie your new crossmember into the upper frame rails?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #121, 01-25-2013 03:19 PM
      You are exactly right. I have chosen a 3" x 4" HSS that I will modify to add a sloping surface of 17 deg for the firewall, it will end up being 3" x 3 1/2" approx.

I haven't really decided how to tie the transverse frame to the upper frame rail. At the moment they just sort of intersect as shown.




I will have a 1 1/2" x 3" HSS connecting the transverse frame to the lower frame rail so perhaps I will design it to tie all three points together.
I also plan to put a large gusset on each side to tie the transverse frame, lower frame rail and firewall together.

edit: for typo's

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #122, 01-25-2013 03:34 PM
      Here is a shot showing the gusset.
To help tie the transverse frame to the upper frame rail, the transverse frame could certainly be extended over the top of the frame rail and then capped and welded around all visible sides.
Your thoughts?



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #123, 01-25-2013 03:46 PM
      Perhaps extend the transverse frame like this, weld it inside and out where possible and then cap it with a piece of plate.

Just a thought.




edit: to add a view

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #124, 01-25-2013 04:08 PM
      I imagine Blooz that we also must keep in mind that the 355 body ( rear quarters and engine deck) are going to be almost flush with the top of this transverse beam, atleast in my current configuration, so as the rear quarters come around and over the B pillar, they will start sloping downwards, possibly right over the upper frame rail so we'll have to keep the top of the transverse frame as low as possible on the ends. As you are doing a coupe it might not be so critical. I'm not sure how low the rear salis ( is that what they are called) will be clipped off for my spider. Perhaps I will have a little more room on top of the frame rail than I think. If you could put your slippers on and run out to the shop and take a look at your 355 body and give me some insight as to what is happening with the body panel shape in this area.

Bloozberry MSG #125, 01-25-2013 04:41 PM
      I'll snap some pics and post them here around 19:00-ish. In the meantime, is there a benefit to removing the existing transverse beam and raising the new one up in its place? Is it because it will show less? I don't think you'll have to worry about clearances to the SBC, but I'll take a photo of my 308 engine bay to give you an idea for sure. More soon.

355Fiero MSG #126, 01-25-2013 05:27 PM
      Guys;

When you are working the rear fire wall be careful to not put it up too high as the sail panel/rear window of the 355 body sits on top of the existing Fiero firewall on these kits. Raising the firewall top too much means you will be cutting and reshaping the rear window area to get the rear clip to sit down on the frame better. On my convertible, I ran a 1x2 across the top for my convertible top mechanism and had to reshape the engine lid area and the rear quarter tops to accommodate the higher firewall top.

Frame reinforcements are looking really good Graham.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #127, 01-25-2013 07:23 PM
      Thanks Don. As I have it drawn at this time, the firewall top edge will remain stock height. If I had a rear window, the frame would certainly be too high as the window ledge in stock position is about flush with the top of the upper frame rail.

To answer Blooz, no, there is no real reason to raise the frame up to the very top of the firewall, other than to gain that 1.44" in the engine bay. Well, also, that "Z" piece of sheet metal that helps support the rear window and edge of the firewall has a flange pointing down against the firewall so even though its only 1/16" thick, it would keep the transverse frame from laying flat against the firewall.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #128, 01-25-2013 07:31 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
I imagine Blooz that we also must keep in mind that the 355 body ( rear quarters and engine deck) are going to be almost flush with the top of this transverse beam, atleast in my current configuration, so as the rear quarters come around and over the B pillar, they will start sloping downwards, possibly right over the upper frame rail so we'll have to keep the top of the transverse frame as low as possible on the ends.


As long as you stay only as high as the the top surface of the firewall, you should be safe. These two photos are the best I could do to show the relationship between the underside of the rear fenders and the top of the upper frame rail. Even though you can't see the upper frame rail, it is 25mm below the top surface of the firewall, so you should be able to visualize where it is in relation to the fiberglass. As you mentioned, if you allow your new crossmember to extend over top of the upper frame rail, you'll probably need to bevel the ends:





As for where the decklid sits in relation to the top of the firewall, here a couple photos that show more or less what you want, though when I disassemble the body to modify it, I'll have to change this area somewhat since the thin lower fiberglass window frame isn't supported by anything as it is installed right now. I will probably fabricate a metal window channel that is welded to the frame of the car and have the fiberglass simply act as a decorative cover. Even though you won't have a rear glass window, you'll still need a trim panel in the same area so you will be affected by this too. The first photo is just to orient you:





Currently, there is approximately 65mm between the upper surface of the decklid and the top of the weld flange on the OEM cross-beam, but like I said, I'm not far enough along to say for certain whether this should stay that high or not. You don't have to look closely to see that the lower rear window frame isn't straight so take the 65mm with a grain of salt. The 30mm dimension shows the location of the underside of the decklid in relation to the upper side.

As for how much room there is between the underside of the stock cross-beam and a typical SBC installation, it's tough to measure because of the angle of the valve covers, but here are a couple photos that show you've got lots of room:





Bear in mind that this is an '84 chassis so the wire bundles come out in a different location than yours will. That's all easily modified anyways.

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 01-25-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #129, 01-25-2013 07:41 PM
      Thanks Blooz. That is very helpful. I guess I could just remove the 'Z' piece which would move the transverse frame up flush with the top of the upper frame rail and it would allow the transverse frame to sit tight against the back of the firewall.

BTW... PIP is very slow tonight.

I'm going to add the stock engine deck hinges to the drawing so see where the engine deck will be in relation to the top of the firewall. I suspect the engine deck height will be very close to the stock Fiero?

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #130, 01-25-2013 08:31 PM
      Updated previous post now that PIP is back.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #131, 01-25-2013 08:54 PM
      Thanks Blooz. Great shots. I think if I remove the 'Z' channel and let the transverse frame come up under the firewall / window flange, it should be safe. That puts the transverse frame flush with the upper frame rails as well so they won't interfere with the body in any way.

I just modeled the stock hinges for my drawing. I think the 84 wire glands in the fire wall are in the same general loaction as my 85.

Your 308 doesn't have a 3" frame stretch does it? I may have even more room.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #132, 01-25-2013 09:00 PM
      Here is the arrangement with the transverse frame raised up under the firewall window ledge and the stock hinges in place. I'll have to compare your 355 body measurements with my drawing and see where the new hood will lie in relation to the top of the firewall. I figured there will be no body work forward of the engine deck cover so I'll have to fabricate some sort of cover for the base of the hoops.



Bloozberry MSG #133, 01-25-2013 09:07 PM
      That's true, the 308 is stock wheelbase so you'll have even more space. Also, the wires pass through in the same location as all years, it's just that I had a senior's moment for a second. I knew something about the '84's wire bundle was different but now I realize it's not where the wires pass through the firewall, it's where the big C500 connector is. On the '84's it's on the firewall, but I remember now that I moved C500 to the same place near the battery as the later years. You'll be fine.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #134, 01-25-2013 09:12 PM
      Great news.

I'll use your 65mm and lay a temporary engine deck on my drawing and see how it looks in relation to the top of the firewall and the roll over hoops. This weekend we will remove the rear window... finally. That sucker is stuck on there something fierce.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #135, 01-25-2013 09:33 PM
      I added an engine deck surface just to have a look and while it seems high using your 65mm measurement, it appears that its only 3/16" higher than the stock Fiero engine deck. Maybe 355fiero or others who are farther along can confirm this. Regardless, I will definitely require some sort of fairing to cover the top of the firewall around the roll over bars.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #136, 01-26-2013 07:30 AM
      Hi Blooz..... to answer your question about connecting the transverse frame to the upper frame rail, I have added an angled flange 1/8" thick that will cap the transverse frame and wrap up over the top of the upper frame rail. This should give ample surface area to allow a wrap around weld (atleast were its possible to get at). I have shown the inner flange of the upper frame rail snipped away to make room for the angled flange to fit tight to the body of the upper frame rail. Also, I have removed the 'Z' piece from under the firewall flange to allow the transverse frame to sit flush with the top of the upper frame rail.

Its unfortunate that the top flange of the fire wall will prevent me from welding the whole assembly together before dropping it down into place. I don't really want to cut the top of the firewall off to allow that to happen....... but

Thoughts?



[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-26-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #137, 01-26-2013 08:17 AM
      IMHO, the weakest part of the Fiero chassis is how the rear upper frame rail is attached to the cabin. To begin with, there doesn't appear to be much of anything for the uppers to be attached to in the first place. Perhaps that's because GM wanted the rear section to be frangible from the cabin in the event of a hard t-bone collision on the back side, but then that might be giving GM too much credit.

I think your latest idea is good but it might be stronger to leave out the angled flange (grey piece) and leave the back and top faces of the new beam longer. The longer top section of your new beam would overlap the top of the upper frame rail similar to your current grey flange, and the longer rear face of your new beam would be bent backwards 90 degrees to give greater contact with the inside upper frame rail. You'd have to trim a little more of the weld flange on the inboard side of the frame rail, but that's not a big problem.

One other thing I noticed is that your latest drawings don't include the support brace that interconnects the underside of that joint to the lower frame rail. That will make a huge difference too.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #138, 01-26-2013 08:30 AM
      I agree Blooz. Its quite shocking just how poorly the upper frame rail is installed. The only problem with leaving out the flange and leaving the transverse frame longer to overlap the upper frame rail is that its going to be tough getting it in there, especially if I leave the front of the transverse rail longer. As I have it now, it would slip right into place between the rails. I'll have another look. Yes, I left the vertical frames out for clarity to see the flange. I think once they are all in and tie all 4 frame rails together with the transverse frame as well as add the large gussets against the firewall, the chassis is going to be incredible strong and stiff.... much more so than the original chassis ever was. I hope I never regret builting it to NOT come apart in an accident.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-26-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #139, 01-26-2013 08:35 AM
      OOps.... I just reread your comments. I understand now, yes, leave the back face of the transverse frame long and bend it back 90 degrees. I agree with you 100% now. Plus its easier to build and less welding with the extra flange taken out of the design. Thanks for your thoughts. I'll update the drawing.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #140, 01-26-2013 08:54 AM
      Ok, I have removed the mounting flange and extended the transverse frame and formed 3 mounting flanges with two of them bent back 90 degrees. This should still slide into place nicely.




Bloozberry MSG #141, 01-26-2013 10:12 AM
      That's the idea!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #142, 01-26-2013 12:48 PM
      Keeping the theme of the transverse frame with integrated flanges to tie to the chassis, I designed the additional vertical frames ( left and right) using 1 1/2" x 3" x 1/8" HSS and kept two flanges / tabs on the lower end to secure the vertical frame to the lower frame rail. The upper end of the vertical frame will be butt welded to the underside of the transverse frame. I also modified the large gusset that will help tie it all together and give additional strength to the transverse frame where the roll over hoops will be fitted.

When it comes time to install this assembly in the chassis, I may end up cutting out some of the horizontal flange on the upper frame rails to allow it all to drop in vertcally and slide forward behind the firewall.




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #143, 01-26-2013 01:00 PM
      Here is a shot with more on the structure turned on so it looks a little more familiar.



Bloozberry MSG #144, 01-26-2013 01:01 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
When it comes time to install this assembly in the chassis, I may end up cutting out some of the horizontal flange on the upper frame rails to allow it all to drop in vertcally and slide forward behind the firewall.


That's perfectly fine. The flanges are primarily there as a means to facilitate the automated spot welding robot's job on the assembly line. You can cut them off and bead weld the corners with negligible impact on strength.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #145, 01-26-2013 01:04 PM
      I think the spot weld robots were trying to wrap the week up early when they built my chassis....... wow... those spot welds are seriously random in places.

Bloozberry MSG #146, 02-13-2013 12:05 PM
     

Bloozberry MSG #147, 02-13-2013 02:03 PM
      I was doing some work on my own project when I noticed that something might not be quite right with your drawings above. Your plan to tie the transverse beam into the upper frame rails may not work exactly as you wanted because the frame rails aren't as long as you portrayed them. Here's a side view drawing from my measurements that shows your transverse beam in purple and how it intersects the upper rail. If I'm right, you won't be able to weld the transverse beam to the inside wall of the upper rail because it is simply too short. Your thoughts?



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #148, 02-13-2013 03:02 PM
      Hi

Sorry I have been a little slack posting updates. Work has been crazy with new boats under construction and others being delivered plus a new ferry for Halifax to bid by next Tuesday.

But as you know, the best way to get an engineer's attention is to tell him he made a mistake. ha-ha-ha-ha.

You may be quite right regarding the length of the upper frame rail. I didn't draw the monstrostity of a B pillar yet because it's so complex in shape so I may have conveniently lengthened the frame rail to suit my needs. I assumed it went all the way forward to the firewall.

The only picture I have on my laptop is this one showing us removing the lower window support. When I get home tonight I'll get a shot looking up at that area. If in fact it is the way you say, I may have to rethink the end connection. I haven't cut the 3" x 4" HSS yet so I have lots of material if it needs to be a little longer.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #149, 02-13-2013 05:23 PM
      Ok, so I had a nice close look at the intersection of the upper frame rail and the top of the firewall/ rear window support and you are right Blooz. The upper frame rail does in fact stop short of the firewall but I don't think its a deal stopper for my current design. However, the upper frame rail does have a lowered top section ( that I missed) that is going to require some consideration and design "adaptation". I'll have to add this detail to my current drawing and then proceed from there with a suitable solution.

Thanks for the heads up.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #150, 02-13-2013 10:03 PM
      So now I have updated the drawing of the upper frame rail to reflect the actual construction of the chassis. It took some serious digging away of the rear window urethane sealant to see what was really there.




Now I need to figure out a structurally sound way to connect the proposed 3" x 4" x 1/8" HSS transverse frame to the upper frame rails.


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #151, 02-14-2013 06:52 AM
      How about extending your frame extension to the firewall. It's probably 20 spot welds to drill out, but you could replace that whole top rail and shape it the way you need it to be.

Bob

[This message has been edited by RCR (edited 02-14-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #152, 02-14-2013 07:13 AM
      Hi Bob. Thanks for your input. I have been thinking about that all night. I am also scratching my head as to why I didn't extend the upper rail when I did my 3" chassis extension because there was a short 4" long piece of frame rail just hanging there in mid air.

I am also looking at the fact that I have to remove the upper portion of the B pillar for the spider and will have to cap the gaping hole which will be in the same plane as the new transverse frame so I may design the structure to handle both of these matters at once.

Its quite suprising just how little there is holding the frame rails to the back of the firewall..... literally 3/4" sheet metal taps spot welded on two or three sides of a square section frame. I can only guess that the rear chassis is designed to separate from the passenger cab in the case of a serious side impact. I know I've seen a few pictures on PFF showing Fieros with the rear ends missing after an accident. Its scary to think about that's for sure.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #153, 02-14-2013 08:21 AM
      I think it's all going to work out ok by just extending the transverse frame all the way to the outboard side of the upper frame rail and keeping flanges attached as a means to connect these frames together. Once I get the B pillar drawn and added to the assembly, I'll be able to see more clearly how the transverse frame will flange to it as well. Here are a couple pictures without the B pillar shown.




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #154, 02-17-2013 09:19 PM
      Watching Fieroguru's video of his LS4 coming to life inspired me to get my own V8 finished today.

Just have to top up the sump with some high grade Italian EVOO for lubrication and she's ready to spin.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #155, 03-10-2013 11:15 AM
      While the chassis modifications proceed at what seems like a snails pace for us, we decided to tackle the topic of choosing wheels and tires for the car. While it's a long way off until the day they actually spin under power, the decision to finallize a wheel specification will allow us to begin the work of developing the requirements for the suspension components. Proceeding in this order presents us with the oportunity to select available wheels from a wider range of designs. As we all know, just dealing with the constraint of sticking to 5 x 100 wheels is bad enough. The only other aspect that we wanted to consider was keeping the selection of final tire diameter as close as possible to Blooz's selection as we are building similar cars from the same moulds. Now that he has taken the plunge and made his selection and purchase, we had a huge sense of confidence regarding the direction we were headed in.

If you think its hard deciding what wheels to go with, try adding the opinion of two teenagers into the mix. Unfortunately both my boys have exceeded me in both height and weight so there are times my 33 1/3% vote felt more like 20%.

As we have stated a few times, we are planning a black color for the car so we first agreed that the wheels would be black also. The next item was that we wanted the wheels to be as flush as possible with the outer edge of the rim. Looking at many many pictures of fieros, modified fieros, various beautiful supercars, we found that we liked this look and it made the car look a little more stealthy, especially as the 355 spider body will appear low and wide anyhow. After many hours of back and forth choices and much deliberation, we selected a couple possible candidates from the brand XXR. From this point we narrowed it down to the XXR 527 in flat black and last night we agreed that this was our final choice and assuming they are available when we place our order, that is what our future black 355 spider will be rolling on. Oddly enough, there was an article on MSN this morning regarding supercars and their 0 - 100 kph numbers and on the McLaren MP4, there were wheels very similar to what we had chosen. We think they look awesome so that gave us a sense of satisfaction that we had made the right choice.

So using several online wheel and tire selection tools, here is what we will be going with.

XXR 527 in flat black
Front Wheel: 17 x 8.25 ET 35mm
Front Tire: 225/45/17

Rear Wheel: 18 x 9.75 ET 20mm
Rear Tire: 265/35/18





As you can see the tire selector only uses one decimal point for the wheel width so it's off by 0.25" ......but its close enough for this execise. As well, we have not chosen a tire brand yet but it will be a summer tire that's nice and sticky as this will only be a fair weather driven car anyway.

Here is the McLaren MP4 with similar looking wheels and we think it looks amazing. Actually, that car could ride on wooden barrel tops and it would look amazing.



So that is our decision regarding wheels and tires. I'll update once we place the order and when they arrive I'll post some pics.
If you have any comments, please feel free to express your thoughts.


motoracer838 (jmartin@musicunveiled.com) MSG #156, 03-10-2013 11:26 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Watching Fieroguru's video of his LS4 coming to life inspired me to get my own V8 finished today.

Just have to top up the sump with some high grade Italian EVOO for lubrication and she's ready to spin.





Wow, what a flashback, I built one of those as a kid (a very long time ago, in what seems like a galaxy far far away.)

Joe



Bloozberry MSG #157, 03-10-2013 04:32 PM
      Excellent choice of wheels. They'll make your black spyder look even more sinister. While there is an argument to be made for dished and lipped wheels from an aesthetics point of view, flush wheels are an indication that the control arms are out at the four corners of the car where they should be, not tucked in a foot under the car. These wheels should allow you to design the control arms to maximize performance.

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #158, 03-10-2013 06:05 PM
      Nice choice on your wheels. You've got me re-evaluating my choices.

BTW, If it's not too late, LSD Motorsports seems to have better pricing, although shipping might be the equalizer.
http://lsdmotorsports.com/m...tBlack&gSize=&gBolt=

Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #159, 03-10-2013 06:11 PM
      Thanks Blooz. Thanks for your help along the way. Its very exciting to finally make a wheel selection and we are satisfied with our choice. And if the selection can add to the design of the suspension arrangement then that's even better. I hope they are still available. ha-ha-ha-ha.

Hi Joe, the model was alot of fun to build and the boys learned alot about the inner workings of the IC engine. There are videos on Youtube where they spin the models to 5000 rpm and apparently they sound like a real running engine. I'm looking forward to trying that. I may build a plexiglass box to put it in... just to catch the flying parts.
It's been 40 years since I built a model kit and it brought back some fond memories. Except this time I had to use a lighted magnifying glass on a stand to see what I was doing.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 03-10-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #160, 03-10-2013 06:17 PM
      Oops, thanks Bob. I guess I was typing my first response to slow. I haven't selected a distributor yet so I'll check out your suggestion. I am guessing that shipping and customs are going to add significantly to the cost.

fierogt28 MSG #161, 03-11-2013 11:15 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Ok, so I had a nice close look at the intersection of the upper frame rail and the top of the firewall/ rear window support and you are right Blooz. The upper frame rail does in fact stop short of the firewall but I don't think its a deal stopper for my current design. However, the upper frame rail does have a lowered top section ( that I missed) that is going to require some consideration and design "adaptation". I'll have to add this detail to my current drawing and then proceed from there with a suitable solution.

Thanks for the heads up.



I love seeing 25+ year old frame in this condition. Today I must admit I've only seen 88 fieros with pristine space frame due to they started
life later. Finding older frames (84s and 85s) are hard to come by.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #162, 03-11-2013 01:05 PM
      It is amazing Fierogt28 that its still in such great shape after so many years. The only spots I've found any rust were the seatbelt anchor points ( I recall my sunroof leaked since the day I bought the car new) and I've seen some looking up the lower frame rail where the rear cradle is secured. Other than that, the current surface rust is from us touching it with our sweaty hands....ha-ha-ha-ha

Funny story, the first time I took my boys to Blooz's, he showed us his cars and when he uncovered his mint black Fiero my youngest guy couldn't resist leaning against it hands first. Blooz remained quite composed but we teased Kirk all the way home. I think during our next visit Blooz had a set of oven mits ready to slip on him....ha-ha-ha-ha. To this day, I'm not sure why we have decided to make our own black car. It may be a decision I will live to regret.


fierogt28 MSG #163, 03-11-2013 05:13 PM
      Humm, sunroof leaking...? Can you tell mean exactly where it is / was leaking. I didn't think that fiero sunroofs leaked when new.
I thought it would leak after many years of use.

Thanks for pointing that out. You can PM if you need to go into further detail.

Thanks,



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #164, 03-12-2013 11:08 AM
      Yes, right from when it was new in 85, the sunroof leaked right at the center aft latch, rain, dew, it didn't matter. I use to carry a little towel and lay on the center console by my elbow to catch the drips. Of course, it stopped in 89...... when I put the car in storage until 2012. To finally fix the leaking sunroof once and for all, I've decided to cut the whole roof off and make a spyder.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #165, 03-14-2013 07:40 AM
      Well.......we survived the battle of " Select your wheels"....... I think. It was a steady up and down emotional ride of pick a style, pick a size, pick a color and then be dissappointed over and over when you get emails saying "not available at this time". Holy smokes, the online shopping is amazing with access to so many suppliers in one place......... but would it kill them to update their posted stock numbers once in a while? Atleast the company I was dealing with, 1010Tires.com now has more up to date stock numbers because with each choice I made, someone there actually revised their website. Shoppers coming after me will have it a little easier....ha-ha-ha

So, with all that said and done, we were able to stick to our original requirements of wheel size and specifications as well as color and general style (10 spoke flush design). In the end we went with the following from 1010Tires.com. Their prices are competitive, they are in Canada so customs is not an issue and shipping is free anywhere in the country.

Drag DR-31 in Matt Black

Front: 17 x 7 ET40 5/100
Rear: 18 x 9 ET38 5/100




The tires haven't been selected yet but that will be a much easier task I think. Here is what I am considering.



I'll post pictures once the wheels arrive, which should be in a couple weeks. My credit card has been billed so hopefully I am not jinxing myself by posting this information before I have them in my hands. To be honest, everytime I check my email I am praying I don't get that familiar response, "Sorry, no longer in stock".


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #166, 03-15-2013 12:18 PM
      Not sure if anyone has experience with Drag wheels or similar designs but the sizes I selected above show only one bolt pattern, 5/100 as apposed to two bolt patterns like the picture shows. I can't find any information on this particular wheel size but is it possible that they will only be made with one bolt pattern? This would be fine, but I can't even get an straight answer from the manufacturer. Something tells me its just an error on the website and the wheels will actually be made with 2 bolt patterns, similar to the other sizes on the list.

Any thoughts on this? Thanks.


Austrian Import (maximilian_ledworowski@csumb.edu) MSG #167, 03-15-2013 12:54 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Hi Austrian Import

I've read through the thread you attached. Wow... that is quite an interesting discussion accompaning the development. To be honest, I am only a humble marine engineer and the automotive world is certainly not my field of expertise. [...]
Thanks for asking btw.


You're very welcome. Give yourself some credit. Your build thread is progressing very well. You're a skilled fabricator.

BTW.: how did you come up with the source for the Rhino files? Measuring, 3D scan, etc.?

Even if you can't contribute to the suspension redesign, please share your experience and thoughts, as some of the things you've learned from redesigning the rear cradle, or chssis stiffening, or even the Rhino files may be useful for some engineers on the suspension redesign thread.


Brastic (shanew@brastic.com) MSG #168, 03-15-2013 12:54 PM
      I just found this thread. Fun project. I really enjoyed building my car.

http://brastic.com/fiero/index.html

Shane


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #169, 03-15-2013 01:49 PM
      Thanks for the link Brastic. That is a very cool and powerful way to document your work. I quickly scanned through it at work but I'll go back and read it indepth this weekend. Thanks for sharing.

Austrian Import, I've been measuring everything by hand trying to capture as such detail as possible and as accurately as possible. As you can see, I haven't finished the cradle yet. I did what I needed for the cradle extension and then stopped and worked on the chassis extension drawings. I'd be more than happy to share my Rhyno files with whoever wants them, but only when its all done ( or atleast certain individual components of it) Even parts that are drawn, I find myself going back and making corrections after the fact so I would not feel right sharing something that I know might not be 100% accurate. I tend to draw for a while and then leave it to do some fabrication. Especially if I am doing alot of design work for my job, I tend not to have much of an interest to draw at night as well. You'll notice that I tend to zoom in close to my drawings so that you can't see what I haven't finished yet.

Here are a few pics of the cradle ( or what's done so far) as well as an overall view of the chassis to date.









Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #170, 03-16-2013 10:49 AM
      Did a little Saturday morning shopping today and picked up a few items for the garage; things we'll probably use for our project over the next few years. Gotta love Canadian Tire 66% off sales. For $225 I got a full set of air tools and accessories, a 50ft retractable air hose and a compressor with enough capacity to run the tools I bought. I know they are not commercial shop grade but for our little backyard oasis, they should do just fine. Plus with Canadian Tire's 3 year "no questions" warranty, you really can't go wrong. Not a bad morning...... considering I was only going to the store to pick up an O ring for the dripping kitchen faucet.

I think I better hide the air chisel from the boys.







DaytonTD (dacton@hotmail.com) MSG #171, 03-16-2013 10:59 AM
      Do want!

 
quote


[This message has been edited by DaytonTD (edited 03-16-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #172, 03-16-2013 11:20 AM
      Mastercraft 71 pc Air Tool set #058-7909-2 Regular $280.00...... today...$41.99.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #173, 04-01-2013 05:11 PM
      Today we purchased the tires for the wheels we selected a few weeks ago - Drag DR-31. Turns out selecting tires is as complicated as selecting wheels. There are so many choices out there.

In the end, we selected Dunlop Direzza DZ101 based on price, availability, style and of course, they had the most Italian sounding name.

Front - 215 - 45 - 17
Rear - 265 - 35 - 18






The wheels will arrive April 3rd and the tires will be here in two weeks.

We'll post pictures once we have them mounted.


Bloozberry MSG #174, 04-02-2013 06:52 AM
      Nice lookin' tires. Like the ones I bought, under normal circumstances they'd probably last only two years given the sticky performance nature of the rubber compound. On our cars, they'll likely last 10 years since a fair weather car in Nova Scotia is one that gets looked at in the garage way more than driven.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #175, 04-02-2013 07:29 AM
      Thanks Blooz. In total they were about $1050.00 installed and balanced, lifetime road hazard, taxes included. I have soft sticky tires on my racing bikes and they don't stand up well to sitting in the hot garage so I hope these do better because like you said, they'll spend more time being admired stationary that they will ripping through the country side of Nova Scotia. I ordered the tires through Coast Tire Center and when he gave me a quote I was happy so I made the purchase. He was quite concered that I would have to wait 10 days before the rear tires arrived and the manager even came out and was also very appologetic. I just smiled and showed him a picture of my car on my build thread. They thought that was quite hilarious. In hind sight, I probably missed an opportunity to get some sort of complimentary upgrade or atleast a Dunlop hat.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 04-02-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #176, 04-02-2013 08:30 AM
      This weekend we finally finished fabricating the rocker reinforcement frames. I added an additional transverse support to tie the new rocker frame into the lower frame rail. I used a section of 3" x 1 1/2" x 1/8" HSS with a 1/8" doubler plate cap at the frame rail end. This should tie all the longitudinal frame rails together with the new rocker reinforcement frame and provide a sufficiently strong upgrade to the chassis before the roof structure is removed. I also added a few flanges of 3/4" x 1/8" FB to provide a weldable connection between the new rocker frame and the existing A and B pillars as they are only thin sheet metal and won't take much heat from welding. With everything tacked together, I'll remove the new structure and have it welded and then blasted and primed before having it permantently welded to the chassis. As you can see, I haven't finished capping the frame rails on the passanger side following the chassis stretch. The drivers side is done though so I'm half way there.

Structure drawing and photo showing additional support to lower frame rail.





Photos showing actual structure in place.









RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #177, 04-02-2013 07:24 PM
     

Bob


Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #178, 04-02-2013 09:49 PM
      Looks great! I see you are going to add small gussets at the bottom rear? Just wondered if you may be entertaining thoughts of running some sheet metal from the added rear rail to the trailing edge of the pass. tub behind the door opening? No need for it, as I said, just curious.

That frame looks outstanding!

HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #179, 04-03-2013 07:15 AM
      Hi Sage, thanks for the thoughts. I have been looking at that area on both sides and trying to come up with a possible arrangement for sheet metal. With the large body scoops on the 355, I certainly have to address the issue of what to do with all that air flow. Unfortunately, with the extra framing I've added for the spider conversion, I will not have the option of installing radiators like Blooz is considering. However, I do see an opportunity to develop a nice air duct for the engine intake on one side and perhaps some type of ducting into the general engine bay on the other side to remove excess heat from the exhaust. In the back of my mind I am thinking 180 headers for my SBC so there will be lots of extra exhaust tubing snaking though the compartment. I don't know if I'll include a challenge grill in the back so I may just look at trying to get as much air flow up and out the louvered engine deck. I am hoping as the project developes I'll have some small eureka moments along the way regarding these topics.

Thanks for standing by RCR. It's amazing how much pressure that little popcorn eating emoticon can add to a persons life...ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. I'll try to keep things moving this spring so those following along don't get too bored. On that note, my new wheels are scheduled to arrive today. . My boys have forbid me to open the boxes until I get them home after work.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #180, 04-03-2013 06:15 PM
      Yahoo...... our wheels have finally arrived. Besides the purchase of the extended windshields, this is the next big purchase for our project. The rubber should arrive next week and then we'll get them mounted. I made the purchase of the wheels through 1010Tires.com in Richmond BC. They were great to work with, were very prompt in returning email queries, confirming the order, supplying the receipt and the accurate shipping details and the wheels arrived in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia exactly when they said they would. I had a positive purchasing experience and would recommend them for consideration.





edit: remove photos of family members

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #181, 04-03-2013 07:08 PM
      Those are boootiful!!!

HAGO!


Bloozberry MSG #182, 04-03-2013 08:01 PM
      Very nice... your car is going to look evil being all black.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #183, 04-03-2013 08:21 PM
      Thanks guys. We're pretty pumped to get them wrapped in the Dunlops next week. I'm looking forward to the day we get to take some photos with our cars together Blooz. They are really going to compliment each other with their similarities and their differences.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #184, 04-07-2013 12:44 PM
      I hope our tires arrive soon. Until then, we'll just let her roll on the rims.



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #185, 04-07-2013 04:27 PM
      I find it amazing that on top of your great build, you are modeling it in 3d... Very cool stuff.

Bob


Bloozberry MSG #186, 04-07-2013 05:41 PM
      That looks awesome Yarmouth! I can't believe there are those who still think us kit car builders merely slap together a bunch of pre-made parts. Those people need to see more threads like this.

fierogt28 MSG #187, 04-07-2013 05:48 PM
     

Well said Blooze...


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #188, 04-07-2013 06:31 PM
      Thanks for the kind words guys. I'm really enjoying being a part of the PFF community. I am always amazed at the depth of knowledge the members have and their willingness to share their knowledge and experience. Its incredible how quickly questions get answered on the forum and rarely if ever does a query go unanswered for more than a few minutes. It's enjoyable to read along and its been an incredible learning experience for me. There are countless technical and build threads that are very inspiring to us newbies. If I can contribute in some small way by posting my build diary, I'll gladly share what I can.

Thanks for following along.

I delivered all my chassis reinforcements to my friend for final welding Saturday. Fred has been building amazing custom rods for many many years and it was him who inspired me to finally tackle this project after many years of coaxing. It was a complete shock when he told me he would be starting chemotherepy this week and has closed his shop but insisted I leave him the parts so he'd have something to help take his mind off the treatments. Best of luck over the next few weeks Fred and don't forget we're still on for a cruise in my car when its finally done.

edit: typo

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 04-07-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #189, 04-07-2013 07:58 PM
      Here is the chassis with the wheels set to approximate track, wheelbase and ride height. Looks faster already ha-ha-ha





Bloozberry MSG #190, 04-08-2013 06:48 AM
      MY EYES! MY EYES!

Looks like an explosion in a Crayola factory!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #191, 04-08-2013 07:23 AM
      Ok, here's a few shots for those that prefer bland.........ha-ha-ha-ha-ha

Although I admit, the artistic views add an interesting " softer perspective".





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #192, 04-13-2013 08:27 PM
      With the chassis rocker frame reinforcements still out for final welding, it was time to tackle the transverse firewall frame modifications. As I had noted earlier in the thread, we plan to install roll over hoops on our 355 spider and as the top of the firewall is only fabricated from sheet metal parts that have been spot welded together, we felt it was necessary to had more strength in this area and provide a suitable foundation for the hoops. As well, since we are removing the roof, we thought it would be a good idea to substitute the removed transverse roof structure with a frame that would connect the upper frame rails to the top of the firewall. The design we came up with was a 4" x 3" x 1/8" HSS that was cut down to match the slope of the firewall and would fit between the upper frame rails. This left a frame with a rectangular cross section that was 3" high, 4" across the bottom and about 3" across the top, a slightly skewed rectangle I guess. We cut the forward side of the 4" x 3" HSS and then capped the open side a piece of 3" x 1/8" flat bar. We also left material on each end of the frame to form flanges that would be used to help secure the frame in place. This includes a top flange and an aft side flange that was bent back 90 degrees to the frame. As you can see, everything is only tacked together at this point.





With the frame fabricated and tacked together, it was time to modify the top of the firewall to accept the new frame. The top of the firewall has a formed flange with a second 'Z' shaped sheetmetal structure spotwelded to the underside. This structure is probably quite strong as designed originally, however, we wanted to get our new frame tucked right up under the firewall flange so we proceeded to remove the 'Z'shaped structure. Holy crap there were alot of factory spotwelds and as well, the ends of the structure lapped over top of the upper frame rails and sandwiched under the firewall flange. It was a days work just to remove that one piece of sheet metal. As we want to fabricate this structure and then remove it for welding, it had to be able to drop between the upper frame rails and slide forward into place behind the firewall. Thus we had to remove about 4" of the inner flange of both upper frame rails. We'll bead weld the exposed flange edges later. We also had to notch the B pillar on both sides so that the top flange of the new transverse frame would slide through.

These drawings show the original sheetmetal in place, then the 'Z' frame removed and finally the new transverse frame in place.







Here is a picture of the new transverse frame in place and a close up of the drivers side.





The remaining flange on the top of the firewall will provide a great place to plug weld the firewall to the frame where the spot welds were drilled out and as well, with the new frame fitting up tight behind the firewall, the forward face of the firewall will be drilled for plug welding to the frame as well. This, together with the flanges on the new frame should provide ample strength to the whole structure while tying eveything together. I also have plans to install vertical structure that will tie the new frame to the lower frame rails of the chassis for additional strength.

This drawing shows how the rollover hoops will be secured to the new transverse frame by passing through it, allowing them to be welded on the top and bottom faces of the transverse frame. This will all be completed prior to final installation in the car.



As I mentioned, there are still vertical supports to be fabricated and installed and then the whole assembly will slide back and out for final welding and then installation. I am also considering having the rollover hoops powder coated after they are welded to the frame but prior to installion of the frame.

I also plan to investigate a suitable design for finishing the ends of the new transverse frame where they currently pass into the B pillar. Once the roof is removed and the B pillars cut off, the ends will be exposed for attention.


Bloozberry MSG #193, 04-22-2013 06:04 PM
      Get your tires yet?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #194, 04-22-2013 06:12 PM
      Sadly.... no. The 265 35 18's were special order and they have not arrived yet. Must be on the slow boat from Italy.

I have been working on the firewall frame and the parts are out for welding as well as working on the design for the mirrors and gathering info and material for their construction. I've reverted back to the traditional 355 design with the folding feature.


Bloozberry MSG #195, 04-22-2013 08:44 PM
      I hope that's not an omen of how difficult it will be to get this size tire when we need replacements.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #196, 04-22-2013 08:58 PM
      I know. But I am sure the boys will make them last for years...ha ha ha

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #197, 04-27-2013 11:43 AM
      Finally........ the tires arrived. Just picked them up from the shop. Mounted, balanced and ready to roll. Now......all I need is the car.

I am very happpy with the selection and I think they will look pretty good on an all black 355 spider. I'll have to stop by with a front and rear and slip them in the wheel wells of your 355 body Blooz. In these pictures, the wheelbase is pretty close but my wooden blocks were about 1 1/2" too high. Still, another small milestone reached on what will be a very long project.

As a refresher, they are as follows:

Drag DR31 flat black wheels with Dunlop Direzza DZ101

Front 17 x 7 ET40 5x100 with 215/45/17
Rear 18 x 9 ET38 5x100 with 265/35/18

All inflated to 32psi






Edit: Photos edited for correct tire direction.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 04-27-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #198, 04-27-2013 12:13 PM
      Very nice... although we are a very picky crowd: you've got both wheels "mounted" on the wrong side of the car! Tsk tsk! BTW, are you sure you don't want to inflate those to 50 psi for better mileage?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #199, 04-27-2013 01:53 PM
      Ha ha ha ha ha. Wow....that was fast...ha ha ha. as soon as I hit send I realized the wheels were backwards.

Stand by for new photos.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #200, 04-27-2013 02:26 PM
      Ok, tire direction corrected. I also applied ArmorAll and orientated Drag hub name to horizontal alignment for photo shoot.

Bloozberry MSG #201, 04-27-2013 02:56 PM
      Muuuuch better.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #202, 05-04-2013 02:27 PM
      Well, we got to stop by and visit with Blooz this morning. We also took along our new wheels and got to try them on his 355 body. I think they look pretty good. Whew......... the pressure to pick the right wheels and tires for a project car that is little more than a bare chassis. But I think we'll be safe with our selection. Here are a couple shots, although I am a terrible photographer. But in my defense, it's hard to focus on taking good pictures when you are surrounded by so many cool cars, engines and various parts. Its always a treat to visit his shop.





We also got to talk suspension options, body modifications and materials.
Yesterday we picked up our transverse frame from the welding shop so hopefully this weekend we'll start installing it and adding the vertical braces and such. Then get all the parts blasted and primed and then welded to the chassis for the final time. Then........ off with its head (roof)......


Bloozberry MSG #203, 05-04-2013 09:20 PM
      I see the photos are just dark enough to prevent anyone from seeing whether you have the tires on the correct sides of the car or not.

Those wheels are going to look great with an all black body.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #204, 05-20-2013 08:09 PM
      So... I've been working on a suitable design for connecting the upper tranverse frame to the lower frame rail. The main issue is how to get it welded as securely as possible because having it up against the back of the firewall and against the sheet metal connecting the B pillar to the lower frame rail (not shown in the drawing), access for full perimeter welding is quite limited. In the end I opted for a simple angled plate that caps the lower end of the vertical support as well as provides a somewhat secure anchor between the vertical support and the top and inside face of the lower frame rail. With it all tacked together, the entire assembly can be removed for welding completely around the perimeter of each joint and then returned to the chassis for installation and welding were possible. If I had more nerve, I'd remove much of the firewall sheet metal to allow for structural welding and then return the firewall sheet metal afterwards.

While I spent most of the day crouched in the engine bay fitting and refitting steel, I also fitted some cosmetic sheet metal on the inside face of the lower frame rail. ( It's remained uncompleted since I did the frame stretch). I'll complete the final welding and finishing when I complete the final welding of the transverse frame and supports.

Its quite tiring climbing in and out of the engine bay with step ladders all day long with gloves and welding apron on. I think if I ever do another Fiero like this, I'll build a permanent patio around the entire car with proper stairs and then just lift the car out when its done. Then put a hot tub in the hole.

Here is the drawing of the vertical transverse frame support and a picture of the parts tacked together in place. The camera flash sure lights up the ugliness of the unfinished welding.





Not sure if this counts as "making progress" on the project, but I did buy a rack for the new wheels. May as well have a nice place to store them as its going to be a long time before they are rolling down the road.



Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #205, 05-20-2013 08:34 PM
     
 
quote
I think if I ever do another Fiero like this, I'll build a permanent patio around the entire car with proper stairs and then just lift the car out when its done. Then put a hot tub in the hole.


LOL!

On your progress! Wish I could borrow you and Blooze for my upcoming project! I can handle the fiberglass aspect, but my days of machining and turning wrenches is very far in the past....guess I'll muddle through...albeit...slowly.

Looking great on the project. Tire rack makes for nice storage for the new shoes!

HAGO!



Bloozberry MSG #206, 05-20-2013 10:04 PM
      Just when I was going to post the need for an update! Glad to see some progress being reported... I'm sure it's happening all the time but there are some stages that take 80% of the work and yet show only 1%. Have you confirmed that if you tack it all together you'll be able to pull it out of the engine bay in one piece? Your design in that area is what I'm going to be using so I'm keeping a close eye on this part... letting you make all the mistakes first

I think it's time this thread got moved to the Construction Zone... I'll send Cliff a PM and see what he says.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #207, 05-21-2013 05:56 AM
      Thanks for your support Blooz and to everyone taking the time to follow along. Its a huge boost to get comments and suggestions from the PFF community. I appreciate each and every post.

Ya... mistakes........ lets just say its time to empty the old scrap barrel. Its filling up fast with misguided attempts and cut offs.

As soon as I get the passenger side structure done I'll confirm that the entire assembly slides out for welding.


Bloozberry MSG #208, 05-21-2013 08:02 AM
      Hey! Welcome to the Construction Zone! This thread really deserves to be here. Great work!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #209, 05-26-2013 07:16 PM
      We got the passenger side vertical support for the transverse firewall beam cut and tacked in place. It took a few attempts to get the right angles on each end together with the correct length. You wouldn't think it would be so hard to do but for some reason, when it was 1/8" too long, taking 1/8" off the end made it 1/8" too short. I think my boys are starting to understand why I always bring home twice the amount of steel we think we will need to do the job.

With it all tacked together, we tried removing the assembly in one piece and it worked well, even with the lower frame rail being unfinished and rough. This will allow us to remove it for full welding, sandblasting and priming before installing it permanently in the chassis. I think Blooz is considering a similar structure for his car to provide an anchor point for his dogbone and possibly the hinges for the rear deck.

I hope to have the rollover hoops made this week and then installed in the transverse beam and tacked in place prior to final welding and installation of the assembly.

Here are a few shots of the beam out, then lowered between the frame rails and then pushed forward against the firewall.







edit: remove photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #210, 05-26-2013 07:58 PM
     

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #211, 05-26-2013 09:23 PM
      As always, looks fantastic. At first glance I might say "overkill" for side to side support, but it's definately a case of "rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it", at least in my mind, and obviously yours too.

Considering the size and design of your side supports, I don't know how you could've done the cross brace any differently..nice job!

Anxious for you to move on to the body...but we all know..."good things come to those who wait" I B Waitn.

HAGO!


fierogt28 MSG #212, 05-27-2013 12:40 AM
      Nice work there Yarmouth !

Like Blooze mentioned, its nice to see this thread now in the construction zone !



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #213, 05-27-2013 05:29 AM
      Thanks guys. It has been going a little slow lately but as we all know, even when we are not physically working on our projects, our brains are fully engaged.

The beam is substantial Sage, however, I did want something robust to provide a solid anchor point for my roll over hoops while minimizing the intrusion of additional structure into the engine bay. I think tieing all the frame rails together should provide a solid support and increase the transverse stiffness of the chassis once the roof is removed.

Thanks Fierogt28, it's nice to be in the construction zone with so many amazing projects. There is certainly much more "construction orientated traffic" here and I'm hopeful ideas and opinions will flow freely as I move forward.


fieroguru MSG #214, 05-27-2013 07:48 AM
      Looks great! Have you test fitted the fuel fill tube to make sure it clear the new support, or are you planning to bend up a different one all together?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #215, 05-27-2013 08:26 AM
      Hi fieroguru, last October during a visit to Blooz's, I located the fuel fill location on his 355 body. It appears to be located very similar to the stock fiero fuel fill. So I located my fuel fill opening accordingly and the stock fill pipe "just" clears the new rocker frame reinforcement so hopefully all will be well. I may have to rotate the fill pipe slightly but I think its going to work. As a back up plan, I could make a new pipe if neceaasry.







355Fiero MSG #216, 05-27-2013 04:49 PM
      Yarmouth Fiero;

You will need to cut the fuel filler pipe and extend it by a few inches anyway since the 355 hips are out further than stock Fiero. I made my fuel pipe cut right where the frame brace is so that I could add in the fuel filler rubber section right there to help with no metal on metal touching for the fuel pipe and the rubber pipe can be manipulated a bit easier to avoid the brace.

Reinforcements are looking really good.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #217, 05-27-2013 07:05 PM
      Great tip Don, thanks. Yes, I neglected to allow for the wider rear quarters which will move the fuel fill outward. I'll follow your suggestion for the extension of the pipe.

Is the small vent line there too? Does it need to be cut and extended as well?

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 05-27-2013).]

355Fiero MSG #218, 05-27-2013 07:48 PM
      Small vent line is there and remains there and also needs cutting and extending.

Keep the updates coming

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #219, 06-02-2013 08:46 AM
      I finally got the material for our roll over hoops. I went with 1 1/2" Sch 40 Seamless DOM Pipe ASTM A-106. This gives a O.D of 1 7/8". The reason I went with pipe and not tubing is because I don't have a 2" tubing die for the hydraulic tubing bender. The 1 1/2" pipe die had a radius of 4" so that also dictated the general shape of the hoop. The design looked good on the 3D model so I hope it suits the car when I get them installed.

I have left the ends long until they are fitted to the transverse frame so they look a little lopsided propped up against the chassis.

Here is the design followed by the actual parts. I hope to get them installed this week so I'll post a pic after that to get a better idea how the shape suits the car.









edit for typo.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 06-02-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #220, 06-04-2013 10:00 AM
      Lookin' good there YF. Surely by now you have some photos of the car with the hoops mocked up on the frame...

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #221, 06-04-2013 02:07 PM
      You'd think .. wouldn't you. However, we are doing testing on a new vessel and its been 12 hours days this week. But this weekend I'll get back on the car. Stand by.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #222, 06-08-2013 04:26 PM
      I've been debating all day about the height of these roll over hoops. I have them centered with the seats so I think that looks fine. But the height is questionable. In the photos, I have them about 3" higher than the head rest. I think they look ok but without the actual rear deck in place, they may actually be too low. I don't want them looking too low on the finished car but I also don't want them towering over the seats. Does anyone have a picture of a Fiero with roll over hoops?

Blooz, would it be possible to get a measurement of the rear deck height above the top of the firewall on your car?











fieroguru MSG #223, 06-08-2013 06:47 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Does anyone have a picture of a Fiero with roll over hoops?


Here is my old Roadster:


Crow's Roadster:
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/F...1/HTML/039369-2.html



Other Random pics:






Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #224, 06-08-2013 08:45 PM
      Thank you very much fieroguru.....ask and ye shall receive.

Bloozberry MSG #225, 06-08-2013 09:11 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Blooz, would it be possible to get a measurement of the rear deck height above the top of the firewall on your car?


Rats... I was working on the car tonight and forgot to measure it. I did look at it though and it's about an inch. I'll measure it for you tomorrow.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #226, 06-08-2013 09:54 PM
      Thanks Blooz. I got one hoop mounted through the transverse frame. It's a little nerve racking to make sure the holes are in the exact spot .... on both sides of the beam. The pipe is 1 7/8" O.D. so I used a 1 3/4" hole saw and hand filed the holes to the final diameter. In these pictures, the hoop is 4" above the seat headrest. This will allow me to notch the top flange of the firewall so that the bend in the hoop is just slightly above the flange. With the body work about 1" higher than the firewall flange, I think the hoops would look proportional in height to the seats.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #227, 06-09-2013 12:45 PM
      I now have both the hoops fitted to the transverse frame and tacked in position. Now to notch the firewall top flange so that the transverse frame can slide forward up against the firewall. I set the height of the hoops about 4" above the seat headrest.





Bloozberry MSG #228, 06-09-2013 03:08 PM
      The measurement you wanted earlier is 30 mm. That is: from the upper-most surface of the cross member at the base of the rear window, to the upper surface of the IFG rear decklid.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #229, 06-09-2013 03:23 PM
      Excellent, thanks Blooz. I may mock up a cardboard rear deck just to see how the roll hoops will look sticking out of it.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #230, 06-11-2013 07:57 PM
      Tonight we notched the top flange of the firewall so that the transverse frame with roll hoops could slide forward and tight against the back of the firewall. I used a 2" hole saw to start the notches and then finished the opening off with a a zip wheel. Then dressed the edges with a file. Those suckers are very sharp.



Once the notches were completed, the transverse frame slid right into place. I raised the hoops slightly to compensate for the 30mm deck height when the body work is done. I think the final height of the hoops is pretty close to what I want. They are slightly lower than the current roof and windshield top edge. I looked at a few different convertable models and I found I liked the look best when the roll hoops / bars were at a height somewhere between the headrest and top of the windshield. I got a few pics with Kirk in the drivers seat to give some reference.....he's 5' 9".











With everything tacked together the way I want, I'll remove the frame, cut the excess tubes below the frame, get it all welded, sand blasted and primed. I am considering having just the hoops powdered coated to accent the final body color. When we get to the body work, I'll include a stylish body panel to cover this frame and the base of the hoops.



Bloozberry MSG #231, 06-13-2013 10:04 PM
      Is the accent color a secret? Is it pink?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #232, 06-14-2013 07:03 AM
      A hint.......think this car........



With this body material and color scheme....... - minus the gold wheels

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 06-14-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #233, 07-01-2013 02:31 PM
      Well, we have agonized over accent colors for the car. The first parts to get powdercoated will be the roll over hoops as they must be welded to the transverse frame before coating and also before the frame is welded into the car. As I stated in the previous post, our plan for the car is a full carbon body with gold tone accents. We think this will give the car a unique look that is not exactly pretty, yet not too ugly. Sort of a " omg...... it's oddly strange yet I can stop staring at it" sort of look. We hope it will walk that fine line between gorgeous and hideous.

Its amazing how many choices there are to select from when it comes to powdercoating and finishes. We have narrowed it down to the following color..... 365 Gold Nugget. Its a true gold tone with a slight shimmer yet does not have that 24 k in your face gold shine. We shot one of the spare hoops with the gold nugget and also shot part of the hoop with a gloss finish and a matte finish as well as left the center section with no clear coat for reference. Its been raining in Nova Scotia for 3 months now so I don't have a good picture in the sunlight. However, we think the au natural finish is the nicest and will suit the satin finish of the carbon body. Hopefully, if and when the sun shines again, we'll get to see some shimmer in the color.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 07-01-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #234, 07-01-2013 07:14 PM
      Cool! I like it.

On another note, a big wooden package arrived today in Greenwood for us both all the way from Vancouver... it's getting off-loaded from the truck and will make it's way to my shop on Wednesday.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #235, 07-01-2013 07:27 PM
      Yahoooooooooooooo. I can hardly wait Blooz. I hope you got a pic of it on the truck with the chopper parts. Let me know what your plans are and if you need a hand unloading it. Thanks again to Don and yourself for making this happen.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 07-01-2013).]

355Fiero MSG #236, 07-01-2013 11:30 PM
      Glad to help guys. Hopefully the parts are put to good use and help you guys out.

Keep the posts coming.

I now have a 3" stretched convertible Fiero frame with 8" wider rear suspension and 4" wider front suspension I need to do something with...... Maybe a new project coming my way that doesn't entail copious amounts of fiberglassing like my last ones......

Good luck and talk to you soon
Don

[This message has been edited by 355Fiero (edited 07-01-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #237, 07-04-2013 09:34 PM
      With all the frame modifications welded and ready for final installation, I had them all sandblasted and primed with a welding primer, Nippe Ceramo. Its a product we use extensively in the shipbuilding industry. They are now ready for final welding into the chassis. The transverse frame will have the rollover hoops welded in prior to powdercoating. Once the powdercoating is done, the frame will take up its permanent home behind the fire wall. The rocker frames weigh 40 lbs each and the transverse frame with hoops weighs 38 lbs for a total weight gain of 118 lbs. While this is quite significant, most of the weight is low on the chassis and the increase in structural rigidity is worth every pound. I expect the roof and original rockers that have been removed already will be a weight savings of about 25lbs. I'll confirm this when the roof is removed.



The rollover hoops have required alot of finish work to get them to a level of finish that I will be happy with. Even though I ordered quality pipe and handled it carefully, there are a million very small dings and nicks which I want sanded out prior to powdercoating.

Here is a picture showing the 4 steps the rollover hoops went through. The black steel pipe was formed using a hydraulic bender to get the desired shape and dimensions. The hoops were then hand sanded with emery paper to remove all the surface imperfections. I did it by hand to ensure that the pipes kept a nice smooth surface with no flats that can occur with power sanding. Also, powdercoating tends to reveal surface imperfections quite nicely and I didn't want to have to refinish them after they are welded to the chassis. Following sanding, I had the hoops lightly sandblasted to give the surface a nice even profile. Finally, the pieces were powdercoated with 365 Gold Nugget with no clearcoat.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 07-04-2013).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #238, 07-05-2013 10:00 AM
     


Looks like a "kit" to me! Maybe you could get with Archie and have him produce these if you didn't want to get into it yourself. You've done all the hard work in figuring out what needed to be done, now it's a rinse and repeat deal! That has to be the best solution to "how to brace up the frame so you can cut off the top" that I've ever seen. Very nice work.

Your "hoops" also look fantastic! You've solved the problem of "jumping through hoops"....you made your own!

Still following your build, gets more impressive every time you post. Thanks for sharing and documenting the process.

HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #239, 07-05-2013 10:33 AM
      Thanks for the compliments Sage. It has been alot of work to get it exactly how I want it. I don't think I would ever get into " production " as I do that for a living at the shipyard. I'm sure my design is far from perfect but I am happy with the results and the fact that they can be made and fitted to the chassis as complete units means that I achieved my goal. I would never " sell " my design as I have taken inspiration from others on this forum who have gladly shared their knowledge, experience and opinions. If someone wanted a copy of the 2D drawings so they could make the modifications to their own car, I don't mind sharing. Once the frames are finally fitted, I'll update my drawings to " As Built " status.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #240, 07-07-2013 01:49 PM
      Today we welded the hoops into the transverse frame. With the height set to what I hope will be suitable for the finished car, we welded them on the top and bottom of the frame. When I was fitting the hoops to the frame, the top hole was easy as I simply drilled them the same size as the O.D. of the pipe. However, getting a tight fitting hole on the underside of the transeverse frame where the tube passed through and that lined up perfectly with the top hole proved to be impossible. So I drilled the lower hole slightly over sized. This left a slight gap so I fabricated washers that fit the tube O.D. and allowed us to get a nice sound weld rather than try and simply fill the gap.













Now the frame will be dropped off for powdercoating of the hoops. He gives them a light sandblasting to even up the surface profile and give a nice clean surface for coating.

We've finally had 2 nice sunny days in a row in Nova Scotia and looking at the finish on the test hoop, I'm kind of liking the clear coat more than no clear coat at all. The clear coat certainly brings out the gold flakes in the finish. I guess I'll make a last minute call when they get the powdercoat.


Bloozberry MSG #241, 07-07-2013 03:16 PM
      Great work Yarmouth Fiero... won't be long before you move on to the drivetrain! Whatcha' got in mind?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #242, 07-07-2013 03:38 PM
      Thanks Blooz. I'm still thinking 350 with either my low mileage 5 speed or perhaps a shiny new 6 speed.

But first, I'm going to get some measurements off that awesome 355 that our buddy Don passed our way. I'd like to get the suspension ordered and installed by the fall so I can atleast sit in the chassis while the boys push me around the block.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 07-07-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #243, 07-07-2013 03:54 PM
      Just having a few Heinekens on this hot summer day and thought this was funny.



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #244, 07-07-2013 04:05 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

But first, I'm going to get some measurements off that awesome 355 that our buddy Don passed our way.


Now I know what some of the cryptic messages were about, and where Don's project ended up.



Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #245, 07-07-2013 04:14 PM
      Yes, Don made a very generous offer and gave both our projects a huge boost with regards to the body work. It was a very exciting developement.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #246, 07-13-2013 08:51 PM
      The transverse frame with rollover hoops came back from the powdercoater today. I am really happy with the quality of the finish. The hoops took alot of hand sanding to remove the surface imperfections but as always, the end result is certainly worth the extra effort. I decided to go with no clear coat in the end. In the sunlight, the gold nugget has a nice shine that really highlights the gold flakes. The 365 Gold Nugget is listed as a super durable finish so no clear on the hoops should be fine. I think when it comes time to do the suspension components, I'll get them clear coated with a semi gloss or stain just for added protection from dirt and debris.







Now its time to get the frame welded into the chassis once and for all.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #247, 07-13-2013 10:01 PM
      Here are a few pictures of the frame in place. I had to open up the slots in the top flange of the firewall so the weld beads at the base of the hoops would pass through. But it's fine since there will eventually be a body panel covering everything on the top of the firewall anyway. Btw, how are the pics of the new body panels coming Blooz?

Now its time to cover the hoops with some 2" dia foam pipe insulation. There will be alot of construction over the next while in the vacinity of these hoops and if they get dinged after the frame is welded in, I'm going to have a hard time fixing them. I'm pretty sure the entire chassis won't fit in the powdercoating oven.





Bloozberry MSG #248, 07-14-2013 04:02 PM
      Great progress there YF! You won't be able to procrastinate on cutting the roof off much longer. I'm getting anxious to see that. (If you're smart, you'll let one of your sons do it so you can blame somebody else if something goes wrong)

If you want, I can post some photos of the new (to us) body panels in your thread.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #249, 07-14-2013 04:21 PM
      ha ha ha ha ha...... it's funny you mention one of the boys cutting the roof. I'll be honest... I am a little anxious about taking that step....... and I have thought about getting kirk to do the cutting. He has good hand / eye developement from hockey. Me..... I'm now wearing bi-focal safety glasses

Yes, please post the new body pics in my thread if you get a chance. Did you try mounting them on your chassis already?

Just got back from a fund raiser for my friend Fred who is battling cancer. Alot of his previous project cars and their owners stopped by for an impromptu show. I think my next project is defiinitely going to be an old car restoration...... and I mean pre 85.


Bloozberry MSG #250, 07-27-2013 09:58 AM
      I've tried taking photos of our newly acquired body panels from Don using two different cameras and different lighting, but none of the pictures do justice to Don's work so far. I'd rather not post photos that don't look right. I haven't tried installing them on my car yet primarily because I haven't had the chance to remove my old ones, but I'm thinking the best way to show how much Don changed the panels is to have before and after shots on my car (or yours!).

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #251, 07-31-2013 09:57 PM
      Well, it's been a few weeks since I have been able to work on the car. It sucks when your job interferes with your hobby. It just isn't right.

First thing to do was cover up the powdercoated roll over hoops. With all the welding and cutting to be done, I just don't want to risk damaging the finish at this point. I'll unwrap them ..........in a couple years.



Next up was to weld the new longitudinal rocker frames to the chassis. We started with the drivers side... and ran out of wire half way through the passenger side. Oh well...it was getting late anyhow.









Hopefully, we'll get the rest welded tomorrow evening as we are itching to remove the roof. Its been all winter just to get to this point. But I'm happy with the design and the fit to the chassis. I think its going to be more than adequate.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 07-31-2013).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #252, 08-01-2013 08:29 AM
      "More than adequate"..........is going to turn out to be an understatement, IMHO!

That looks better in application that it did in theory, and as I said before, don't think that chassis is going to flex any way you don't tell it to.

"and ran out of wire half way through the passenger side." I hate it when that happens!

Looks great to me, and I still say you should patent that design for the frame stiffner! Really can't think of any better way to do it. Maybe you could offer up a blueprint package or something, could make a buck or two? (at least a quarter! )

Keep up the great work and don't forget to keep us updated when you get time.

HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #253, 08-01-2013 08:41 AM
      Thanks Sage. I can certianly provide drawings with measurements for anyone interested in cutting into their chassis. I'm going to use a long inside micrometer on the door frame once welding is done and before I remove the roof. Then support the chassis as if on wheels and take measurements after the roof is removed and also load the chassis up with weight to see what kind of chassis distortion actually occurs. I'm curious to see just how stiff the design is in practice.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #254, 08-10-2013 09:01 PM
      Tonight we finally got the passenger side rocker reinforcement welded. I am very happy with the fit of the new frames. So that was the go ahead milestone to start cutting off the roof. For now we just made a rough cut an inch or two from the final line. Once I have an idea as to how to properly cap off the B pillars and the windshield top frame, I'll make the final finish cuts. So, I gave Kirk the green light and the zip wheel and he went at it. His friend who was visiting thought it was pretty cool to see a car get its roof cut off.

And finally, the last photo of the day. I've dreamt of that little car being a convertible for many years.

edit: remove photos of family members

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #255, 08-10-2013 09:45 PM
      Woohoo! Now THAT's a significant milestone. Completely changes the look of the chassis. Way to go!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #256, 08-11-2013 03:36 AM
      Thanks Blooz. I think the next step will be to shorten the wooden supports and get the chassis to ride height. Then I'd like to flip the whole thing over and finish welding the rocker supports to the chassis on the underside as well as clean up the area where the fuel tank goes. I suspect even this clean chassis has a little surface rust under there.

I've been searching for information or perhaps even a build thread that has details on how to best finish off the top edge of the windshield frame. If anyone knows of a link to such info, I'd love to see it.

Today I'm off on the "Heart of the Valley" century ride today. After this 170 km bike ride, I may have to take a couple days off from the car project.


355Fiero MSG #257, 08-11-2013 05:09 AM
      Graham

I will email you the detail I did to create a good seal for the windshield frame. Did it for my 308 Targa build. It uses a Firebird t-top seal cut and joined across the width. I also have a fibreglass windshield top mold that can be used as well as per a bunch of other 355 kits.

May take a couple days to get it to you though as I am eyeballs deep in extending the 308 trunk by the end of the weekend.

Talk to you soon

Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #258, 08-11-2013 06:38 AM
      That sounds great Don, thanks.

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #259, 08-11-2013 09:29 AM
      Great to see you get to this stage...as always..very nice job!

We also have a mold to make a "cap" for the top of windshield, though I can't imagine it's much different than what Don has available. It's part of what could be called a "kit" for helping to turn a Fiero into a convertible.

Here's a pic of the whole kit:


and here's one of just the ws cap..(this is the underside):


How are you planning to "flip the whole thing over"...is a rotisserie in your future..or do you already have one? Sure would be nice to be able to do that!

Keep up the great work, and don't forget to keep us updated!

HAGO!


exoticse (exoticse@netzero.com) MSG #260, 08-11-2013 10:49 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

Woohoo! Now THAT's a significant milestone. Completely changes the look of the chassis. Way to go!


Exactly ! Now that is cool !


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #261, 08-11-2013 07:03 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Sage:

Great to see you get to this stage...as always..very nice job!

We also have a mold to make a "cap" for the top of windshield, though I can't imagine it's much different than what Don has available. It's part of what could be called a "kit" for helping to turn a Fiero into a convertible.

Here's a pic of the whole kit:


Thanks Sage. Those are very interesting pieces. Do you have a picture of them finished and mounted on a car? I think on our car, the rear valance behind the seats might end up being a leather cover to simulate a convertible top stored underneath.

It is certainly cool to finally get that roof off Exoticse. I'm eager to finish off the B pillars and then get the transverse frame and hoops welded in place. I had to take the frame out to get the zip wheel in for the roof cut. I said earlier that I would leave the hoops wrapped up until later just to protect them........ but I think I want to look at them and take a few pictures.



Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #262, 08-11-2013 10:46 PM
      Didn't mean to suggest that the "kit" would help your circumstance as I don't see how it would. Was just posting the pics to show the windshield cap, basically as a starting point. There is no provision for creating a seal or anyplace to lock on a rag or removeable hardtop, just a cap to put over the exposed metal after cutting the roof. Of course, those things (seal and pin receptacle) can be fabricated and added to/worked into the fiberglass cap, especially by someone as inventive, creative and capable as yourself. It is just a means to provide a decent looking "finish" to the new cut.

No, unfortunatly I don't have any pics of these pieces mounted and finished off on an existing car. I did have occasion to use the rear fender tops when my son was doing the fastback taillight conversion on his notchback clip. We used them to fill in the spot that was left open when combining the fastback and notchback clips. Saw the boot section installed on a car at the 30th, it was the green convertible that the man hauled in on a trailer after having driven over 5,000mi. to get to the show!

Don't know what mold Don has for the same piece, but like I said, I can't imagine it being much different unless it does have provisions for locks and seals molded into it.

Loving your progress!

HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #263, 08-12-2013 07:28 AM
      Thanks Sage. I greatly appreciate your input and never felt like a kit was being suggested. For the soft top, it seems that it's always a difficult topic to address because its such a hard item to fabricate that is both functional and aesthetically pleasing. At this time I just assumed our car would not have a top as its only going to be a fair weather driver anyway. However, if I'm ever going to get it to a car show outside of Nova Scotia, I'm going to need to address it at some point.

Again, thanks for the info. If anything else comes to mind, please feel free to add it to my thread.

Graham


355Fiero MSG #264, 08-12-2013 02:18 PM
      Hey guys;

My cap looks pretty close to what Sage has was well. The top of my cap has a ridged/dropped section though that lowers the sealing surface down about 3/8" so the top fits level with the top of the header. It doesn't really address the latch portion though.

What I did on the 308 targa was to weld a flat plate to the bottom of the windshield header that comes out about 2". I bought aftermarket Firebird T-Top seals that I cut the centre section out of and laid these seals onto that flat plate I installed. You will need a mounting/retaining groove so I bent flat plate 3/4"x1/8"/1/4" to allow the bottom of the seal to fit. The bottom of the seal is very similar to how the Fiero door seals are mounted into the rails along the side glass area. The Firebird seals mate up to the Fiero door seals about half way down the window and get glued together. The middle of the top seal section also gets glued together.

I have pics over on my build thread on MadMechanics. I will go over and pull them off and get them up on Photobucket and link here to show what was done.

For the latches, you will need to make up some latches that mount under the screen frame so that you don't interfere with the seal. I planned on using Miata latches on my 355 convertible when I was building that. The targa will have a different setup as I have a solid targa piece to work with.

A quick drawing of what I did below and I will get the pics off my other build shortly. Let's see how that works. Hopefully I made the drawing big enough

Thanks
Don



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #265, 08-12-2013 03:03 PM
      Thanks Don. That is very helpful. I never thought of adding a horizontal piece to hold a seal like that. Thanks for the tips regarding possible sources for seals and such also.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #266, 08-13-2013 09:44 PM
      Tonight we started trimming the top of the driver side B pillar. Looking at photos of the 355 body kit, I decided to cut a line that sloped down from the top of the firewall to a point level with the top rear corner of the door structure. I'd rather have it a little low than too high and have to lower it when we fit the body later.



Even though there is a series of structural sheet metal shapes inside the B pillar, the door has a bit of a hollow feel and sound when it slams shut and hits the striker plate. I guess that can be expected since the top of the pillar and the attached roof structure have been removed.





I am hopeful that when I cap the B pillar with a piece of 1/8" plate it will stiffen up the top of the pillar. As well, I am going to tie this plate into the end flange of the transverse frame and the upper frame rail for additional strength. As I suspected when I was fitting the new transverse frame a few pages back, the end flange was floating in mid air inside the B pillar.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-13-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #267, 08-13-2013 09:46 PM
      Oops... double post.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-13-2013).]

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #268, 08-14-2013 06:44 AM
      [QUOTE]Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Oops... double post.



Two posts from you is just twice as good . Great stuff.


Bob




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #269, 08-15-2013 08:15 PM
      I got some very exciting news today. Blooz is coming to Yarmouth this weekend...... and he's bringing our new ( Don aka 355Fiero) modified 355 body. I've seen it at his shop but this will be the first time we get to see my chassis wearing something other than dust.

So naturally I've spent the evening tidying up my shop and making some room. I also adjusted the height of my chassis by lowering it to the obligatory 125mm ( 5 inch) ride height. Holy, I've looked at that chassis sitting 12" too high for so many years, that it looks totally strange tonight. So of course I had to slip a set of wheels in place and snap a few shots to post. It is weird how lowering the car 12" makes it look 24" wider..ha-ha-ha





I suspect by Sunday, I'll have some pictures to post of my car with atleast a few body panels loosely fit. Drive safe Blooz


Bloozberry MSG #270, 08-15-2013 09:40 PM
      Lookin' forward to it... see you soon.

355Fiero MSG #271, 08-16-2013 01:20 AM
      Looking forward to seeing how the panels will fit on your car Yarmouth Fiero. Don't judge the body work. It was a work in progress...... Couple hours of sanding and it will look pretty again...... well maybe a few more than a couple hours... haha

I think the first area of conflict will be the hoops as I had a 1x2 under the fiberglass firewall plate on the rear clip and it rested completely on top of the firewall. It also had the convertible top mounting lip along that plate.

Good luck and drive safe Blooz.
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #272, 08-16-2013 04:59 AM
      Hi Don, thanks for the heads up. Luckily, I have not yet welded the transverse frame in place yet so I can slide it and the hoops right out of the chassis for the panel test fit. One of my main goals this weekend is to set the front clip on and see where the interference will be with the chassis. I'd like to remove as little steel as possible up there. Also, I am hoping that we can get a good measurement of the required track width so I can get the control arms made to suit my wheel offset. You've done a ton of work to those panels and Blooz and I appreciate the time and effort you put into them. You have given our projects a huge boost.

Thanks again

Graham


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #273, 08-17-2013 01:31 PM
      Well, Blooz delivered as promised and the panels are now in my shop...and driveway. Here is a picture without the rear section in place yet. There are a few fitment issues as we knew there would be. The main items are the jumbo rockers frames I installed and the fact that I have not yet cut the front end structure on my chassis yet. I hope that I'll get the rear section sitting in place later tonight or tomorrow.



fieroguru MSG #274, 08-17-2013 01:34 PM
      Looks like your front will need lowered at least another 25mm!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #275, 08-17-2013 02:02 PM
      Yes, atleast that much, maybe more. There is 70mm (2 3/4") there right now. I can't find the drawing on Blooz's thread where he showed the desired clearance on the front. He'll be here tomorrow to help me with the fit so we'll fix it then.

edit the conversion to mm

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-17-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #276, 08-17-2013 02:48 PM
      Here is the rear end in place... sort of. The hoops are holding the rear from sliding all the way forward. But its nice to see some panels on the chassis none the less.







Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #277, 08-17-2013 03:07 PM
      And the rear deck in place. Its a pretty good first fit to my chassis. Thanks a million Don. Fresh lobster and beer when you get here.





And the front hood as well.



Klasse_GT (fiero87@telia.com) MSG #278, 08-17-2013 03:12 PM
      Just keep them coming
I love this thread. Looking good!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #279, 08-17-2013 07:24 PM
      Taking lots of pictures of the panels and how they interact with the chassis. One of the key areas of concern was behind the B pillar where the new rocker frame rises and meets the rear chassis frames. The fuel fill location was of particular interest. As can be seen here, it looks like the wide hips on this car will move the fuel fill well outboard of the new frames.



In fact, looking at both sides of the car and the space available, I might still be able to get a couple of those nifty little radiators wedged in there like you are planning Blooz. Who would'a thunk it?



fieroguru MSG #280, 08-17-2013 07:30 PM
      Looks good! Is the hood setup for the extended windshield or is that a mod you plan to do before pulling molds.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #281, 08-17-2013 07:36 PM
      I'm pretty sure Don did all that work already. My yellow windshield is a model of our extended glass and it suits it very well. I think even the air vents in the hood have been moved forward as there is plenty of room between it and the rear edge of the hood.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #282, 08-17-2013 07:42 PM
      Also Fieroguru, you had mentioned about the front wheel opening being about 1" too high. I notice that the front quarter panel has been raised about 1" by extending the mounting flange. I will have to check Dons notes to see why this was done. I suspect it was so the the doors and rockers would all match the lines on the car as you move rearward. That is why it appears like there is alot of room between the hood and the windshield.

Edit: sorry for the long pictures. I have to stop turning my camera on its side.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-17-2013).]

355Fiero MSG #283, 08-18-2013 02:34 AM
      Yarmouth Fiero.

Panels are looking good on the frame. Too bad they look so terrible with all the duraglas on them. They need to be primed to get a decent image of them and the lines. The front hood you have is my old one. The new, grey gel coat one is actually a better option really.

The front clip mounts were redone because I didn't like the way the old ones were shaped. I took some Fiero fenders and took some quick molds and made new mounts. The height of the front fenders are the original height though. The front wheel wells were always high on the car. I lowered the rears down an inch or so when I straightened the body line out but the fronts were always too high. Made me have to lower the front down quite a ways.

I would see about maybe looking at lowering the wheel wells down a bit....

Good luck with getting everything lined up.

Cheers
Don

[This message has been edited by 355Fiero (edited 08-18-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #284, 08-18-2013 04:53 AM
      Hi Don

The panels look great and except for the chassis interference around the doors, which we knew about in advance, they literally just sat right in place. It was very exciting to see my car with a body on it for the first time since I stripped the original Fiero panels off it. I've seen Blooz's coupe a few times and was always amazed at the shape of the 355 body but there is something about the spider that makes it look so damn wide and low........ I love it.

I think Blooz is stopping by this afternoon and we'll go over everything and make notes along the way. I have taken a ton of pics as well just to record the baseline before we dive into the body work.

Thanks again Don.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #285, 08-18-2013 07:58 PM
      Well Don, I took your advice and removed my transverse frame and roll over hoop for the body fitting today with Blooz. With that new structure out of the way, the rear body section slid right up over the firewall like you said. We reviewed all the panels today and came to the conclusion that the rear end is pretty damn good and will probably be the starting point for our panel developement. I think Blooz managed to convince me that we'll be cutting the bottom off the doors to suit the rocker panel and doors skins as you have them. He reassured me it would be a "piece of cake".

With regard to the front end, we didn't manage to come to a solution yet with regard to the wheel well opening. That is going to take more time.

Here is the rear body moved all the way forward without the rollover hoops.



fourpoint9 (stevenmsimpson@comcast.net) MSG #286, 08-18-2013 10:06 PM
      Have you considered a F430 spider look?





Like this






Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #287, 08-19-2013 07:05 AM
      Thanks for the very cool photoshop fourpoint9. I infact did use that style as inspiration for my hoops. Although the final shape was dictated somewhat by the pipe bender die. I do like the image you have posted though. I will definitely give it some thought. I do have to take into consideration that the rear deck I have shown this weekend has to also accommodate a coupe style as Blooz and I will be sharing moulds and his current roof and pillars will have to be bonded to whatever deck shape we end up with. I will probably make some changes to the rear deck that Don supplied so that it can be moulded easier. There are a few reverse curves in the flange that would house the convertable roof that I may have to alter. But I could certainly see a style similar to what you have shown.

Thanks for the inspiration and taking the time to photoshop.


355Fiero MSG #288, 08-19-2013 07:07 PM
      Yarmouth Fiero;

Blooz is right, cutting the bottom off the doors and welding in a new support brace for the rockers is quite easy. That was one of the easier parts I did.....

As for the convertible top areas, I added the convertible top mount lip to the original sail panel areas after everything was there. I would add in a filler piece to fill in the area under the convertible mount lip so that your convertible top area mold will slip right off. As for Blooz's hard top fitting on, the convertible pieces I grafted in are put in pretty much in the same place as the old roof came off so if you lay the roof section on to the rear clip when all in place, you can trim the roof sail panels a bit to fit to the top of the rear fenders, and then fill any gaps if any, and mark where the roof mats to the top of the rear clip. Make a mold barrier at that mating point so you can make both roof and convertible mold pieces in that section. I can visualize it in my head and it make sense so far. The convertible lip along the top of the firewall should be pretty close to what the roof will need as well. Not 100% at that though....

Pieces looking good overall though.

Cheers
Don


 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Well Don, I took your advice and removed my transverse frame and roll over hoop for the body fitting today with Blooz. With that new structure out of the way, the rear body section slid right up over the firewall like you said. We reviewed all the panels today and came to the conclusion that the rear end is pretty damn good and will probably be the starting point for our panel developement. I think Blooz managed to convince me that we'll be cutting the bottom off the doors to suit the rocker panel and doors skins as you have them. He reassured me it would be a "piece of cake".

With regard to the front end, we didn't manage to come to a solution yet with regard to the wheel well opening. That is going to take more time.

Here is the rear body moved all the way forward without the rollover hoops.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #289, 08-19-2013 07:35 PM
      Thanks Don

Blooz was just here and we had a chat about the parts and which direction to proceed next. We are feeling pretty good about the whole process. Then we packed the panels up in his trailer and he drove away. But if I close my eyes really tight I can still see my chassis covered with a body. I guess he didn't want me getting too attached to them yet...ha-ha-ha

I think my next steps will involve finishing off the top of the windshield frame, welding in my transverse frame and capping my B pillars. Plus I have a little welding to do to cover up the chassis extension on the passenger side. There are a hundred little tasks to complete this fall.

I did get a good measurement of the front fenders so I can work on my suspension drawing and get my control arms ordered. I'd love to have this chassis rolling before winter so the boys can push me up and down the driveway.


Bloozberry MSG #290, 08-19-2013 08:15 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
I guess he didn't want me getting too attached to them yet...


Got that right.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #291, 08-20-2013 10:18 PM
      Tonight I decided to start working on my task list posted above. The first thing on the list was to finish the roof chop by deciding on a line along the top of the windshield. Looking at a few different convertables, there seemed to be a wide range of styles regarding bodywork along the top of the windshield. I decided I wanted to keep it fairly thin yet a little more than the windshield sides. So I scribed a line that ran parallel to the top of the glass ( yellow plastic) and also saved two original body mounts from the original roof.

I bent a wooden batten and clamped it in place as a guide for the zip wheel.



I cut a nice fine line through the top layer of sheet metal. However, my zip wheel was getting a little small and it was my last one in the pack, so once I had the top layer cut from side to side I got out the trusty reciprocating saw with a fine blade and cut through the lower layer of sheet metal. The whole proceedure took about 2 minutes. After dressing the razor blade edges that the cuts left I had a pretty decent finished edge.







From the top of the windshield to the rear edge, I left about 2 3/4"



I'll work on a suitable design to finish off the steel work and strengthen up the edge at a later time.

edit typo.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-21-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #292, 08-21-2013 07:59 PM
      Tonight I tackled number 2 on the list of unfinished tasks........ weld the transverse frame into the chassis. We got a good bead on the upper and lower frame rails and you could feel the chassis stiffen up. It even took some of the rattle out of the shortened B pillars. I will finish welding the top flanges of the transverse frame once I have the B pillars capped with some 1/8" plate. I had every intention of stitch welding the top of the firewall to the transverse frame but I'm still not 100% sure how I want to finish the sheet metal off. Right now, I'm not loving the condition of the top flange of the firewall and I may remake this area with some new sheet metal. I'll keep looking at it for now.



[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-22-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #293, 08-23-2013 01:25 PM
      Just received my engine cradle poly bushings from the Fiero Store. Not as flashy as a full suspension order............... baby steps till then.

Any thoughts on installing zerk fittings to the cradle bushing housings and machining an annular groove around the perimeter of the poly bushings to allow for periodic lubrication? There is alot of talk about squeaky poly bushings once in service.



Bloozberry MSG #294, 08-23-2013 04:03 PM
      There's virtually no relative movement between the cradle, the cradle mount bushings, and the frame, so you don't need to worry about squeaking on these bushings. The ones you have to worry about are on the control arms.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #295, 08-23-2013 04:09 PM
      Even when I catch some air racing by your place? ha-ha-ha

Bloozberry MSG #296, 08-23-2013 06:15 PM
      On my road patchwork-quilt-of-paved-patches you just might get some relative movement between the cradle and the frame. LOL

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #297, 08-23-2013 07:25 PM
      You know Blooz, that 4 x 8 sheet of black poly skid plate in my garage is going on my car just so I can visit and drive down your road one day. Hey, there is going to be a provincial election this fall, maybe your road will finally get resurfaced. I should have mentioned it to Dexter this week when he toured the shipyard ha-ha-ha

Maybe one nice day I'll bring the lasar transit and we'll mark all the high spots that our 5" ground clearance won't clear.


Klasse_GT (fiero87@telia.com) MSG #298, 08-27-2013 03:44 PM
      Updates?



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #299, 09-01-2013 09:12 AM
      Still working on my list of little jobs to do Klasse_GT. This weekend it's been fabricating top caps for the exposed B pillars. I used 1/8" plate for this. Here is the drivers side done but not welded yet. But even just pressed into place, it tightened up the door rattle in the B pillar.



[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-01-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #300, 09-08-2013 08:16 AM
      Still plugging away at the to-do list generated after removing the rood structure. After capping the B pillars, I have moved on to the windshield transverse structure. I'm stilll unsure if the car will get a soft top right away but regardless I want to strengthen up this area as much as possible while still allowing the option of adding some sort of soft top securing mechanism in the future. This has proven to be a bit of a tough part to fabricate as its less than 3/4" high and it gets a little messed up at the ends due to my cut passing through a couple factory placed holes in the sheet metal.





I am now on my second attempt, as my first try did not offer enough support and strength over the span. Luckily I hadn't yet welded the first attempt in place.
I decided to use 1/16" sheet metal and form it in a way that there will be tabs along the entire top and bottom edge. This will provide maximum stiffness as well as provide the opportunity to weld it to the existing sheet metal along most of its length.







With the top edge formed, I will proceed to fabricate the lower edge and then once complete, get it blasted and primed and welded into place.

I had considered adding a solid rod down each side of the windshield pillars to add strength to them but access at the bottom is very limited and not having a strong welded connection at the lower end would have made them pointess. Does anyone have experience with this?


fieroguru MSG #301, 09-08-2013 05:47 PM
      I forgot to share what I did for my cap way back when... I took some 1/8" metal and pressed it to the frame to get the curve, then marked it to the roofline (outer panel line) cut the top so it was close. Set it in place again, stitch welded it top and bottom. Slid the front panel section back on then ground the metal down to the body. On the inside I marked it about 1" from the bottom and cut it off and smoothed it as well. It was a true roadster, so it didn't need any provision for sealing surface.



You could probably scribe the shape of the current gap between the top/bottom metal parts, cut it out of some 1/8" and slide it in and weld it up.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #302, 09-08-2013 08:55 PM
      Thanks for the photo and construction suggestion Fieroguru. I think my car will probably be a roadster as well. I see you left the lower edge lower than the inner sheetmetal, was this to act as as a finished edge for the remaining headliner? Did you cap the 1/8" plate with something or paint it to match the body work / interior? At this point I really have no idea how I'm going to finish it so I just want to get it stiffened up and finish off the welding. I am sure when I get to the body work stage, some inspirational solution will strike me..... in the middle of the night.

fieroguru MSG #303, 09-08-2013 09:55 PM
      I left it long so I could do something with the headliner, then trim it to fit, but never got around to it before I moved to KY in 2006 and sold many of my fiero projects.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #304, 09-22-2013 04:35 PM
      Well it's been a couple weeks so time for an update. We finished welding the B pillar caps in place. As I had hoped, it made a huge difference to the stiffness of the pillar structure. When you slam the door now, it sounds like they are closing against solid concrete.





We also finished capping the top of the windshield structure. It took 3 attempts until I had it the way I wanted it. Like the B pillars, it made a huge difference to the stiffness of the structure. It's hard to get a good picture of it as the differences in surface color makes it look wavy.



Here is the chassis with all the cutting and chopping completed....... for now.



I've also been working on the front suspension and adding the parts to my 3D computer model. I'm ordering the Arraut front spindles with 1 1/2" drop and the 13" brake kit. Once I have these parts in my model I'll be able to measure the exact length needed for the upper and lower control arms. Here is my 17" front wheel with the 13" brake rotor. There is just enough room for the calipers.







edit typo

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-22-2013).]

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #305, 09-22-2013 08:19 PM
      Looking good...



Bob


Bloozberry MSG #306, 09-22-2013 08:58 PM
      I dunno.... those green brake rotors just don't do anything for me. Think I'll stick with my 12" steel colored ones.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #307, 09-23-2013 07:05 AM
      Yes, those lime green rotors are from the new Glade Scents Automotive collection. Apparently, under conditions such as hard braking, they give off a calming citrus scent. They are meant to replace the traditional pine tree hanging from the rear view mirror.

Klasse_GT (fiero87@telia.com) MSG #308, 10-03-2013 03:14 PM
      Any progress?

/Klasse


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #309, 10-06-2013 07:28 PM
      Hi Klasse_GT, sorry for the late response.

Work (ie: my job) has had me tied up with new contracts and projects to ramp up. With regard to actual progress on the car, its been a little slow, I'll admit. I've gotten through all the items on my list that are not dependant on having the body ready to install. After having the initial 355 body panels (that we are using as a plug for moulds) loosely fitted this summer, there are a few items that need to be done but I am hesitant to proceed past the design stage at this point. These include removing some of the front chassis structure in way of the hood and nose, raising the bottom of the door structure to clear the rocker panels and restructuring the lower windshield fascia to suit the extended windshield. While I have the preliminary design work started for all of these items, as I stated, I am reluctant to cut anything until Blooz and I have finalized the actual body panels as there are some major changes we need to finalize and complete.

On that note, I stopped by today to see Blooz's progress on his rear suspension and as you might guess, it looks even better in person. As well, we got a chance to talk about a couple other items that he has been working on that we will likely incorporate into both our cars. More on that subject later.

With regard to my front suspension, I will be purchasing my Arraut 1 1/2" lowering spindles tomorrow. Once I have them, I'll add them to my 3D model so that I can finalize the control arm measurements. I have decided to go with the Arraut 17" 13" brake system as well.

The next item on the chassis modifications that I can proceed with is to flip the chassis upside down and finalize some welding on the rocker reinforcements, refinish and install the fuel tank, fabricate new stainless steel cooling pipes and brake lines and then design and fabricate my skid plates. You may recall I purchased (on page 3) a 4ft x 8ft panel of 1/2" black UHMW sheet which I hope to fashion into Ferarri 355 style skid plates under the passenger space.





This work will be our focus throughout the winter months. As always, I'll document with drawings and pictures as we proceed. Hopefully progress will be steady enough to keep updates regular.

Edit: corrected my monster brake rotors.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-06-2013).]

Bloozberry MSG #310, 10-06-2013 08:25 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
I have decided to go with the Arraut 17" brake system as well.






Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #311, 10-06-2013 08:35 PM
      ha-ha-ha-ha-ha....... Oops. Good catch Blooz........... 13" brakes...... not 17".

I better go back and edit that post before someone else thinks I'm a wack job....ha-ha-ha

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-06-2013).]

Klasse_GT (fiero87@telia.com) MSG #312, 10-08-2013 12:59 PM
      Thanks for the update!

Edit my poor english :-)

[This message has been edited by Klasse_GT (edited 10-08-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #313, 10-20-2013 07:05 PM
      It's been a while since my last post but I have been working on a few items. One of these items involves reworking the windshield wipers to suit the extended windshield we are using. A few pages back, we documented making a template of the extended windshields we bought and the bright yellow object in my pictures is a pretty close replica of the extended glass. As can be seen from the first photo, the extended glass covers the stock wiper location, both driver side and passenger side. I laid the wipers on the template to show the stock locations.



My plan is to move the stock wiper pivots forward. The drivers side will move straight forward approximately 3 3/4" and the passenger side will be an exact mirror of the new driver side location. I then have to rework the linkages so that the wipers rotate from the center outward away from each other. My plan is to keep the stock wiper motor and location.



I'll also need slightly longer wiper arms and blades. There appears to be enough room to run the new wiper linkages through the Fiero airbox under the windshield.

Here is a picture of the stock linkage. I am hopeful that the stock wiper arm pivots can be reused as well as the stock linkage joints which are rivited to the current linkages.



I can only imagine that this task has been completed by someone before me yet I have yet to master the Search tool effectively. If some knows a link to a previous project, I'd appreciate a heads up.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-20-2013).]

fieroguru MSG #314, 10-20-2013 07:59 PM
      Flip the lever arm on the passenger side 180 degrees so it points to the front (might need to lengthen the main cross bar slightly). Then when the motor pushes the linkage to the passenger side, the passenger wiper will rotate towards the center as will the drivers side.

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #315, 10-21-2013 07:54 AM
      Great job as usual.... FWIW, I was keeping this mod stewing in the back of my head for the future, but my Aztek has a very similar wiper scheme, being on the out side. It might be worth while to see how GM did it.

Look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #316, 10-21-2013 11:10 AM
      Thanks for the input Fieroguru and RCR. My last 3 Grand Caravans had the same set up so I am hopeful it should be an easy modification. I'll document with photos, drawings, measurements and materials along the way.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #317, 10-21-2013 01:14 PM
      As Blooz mentioned in his thread, we are going to go with 300 ZX headlights on our builds. Its amazing how well the shape fits the 355 hood lines.

Mine just arrived. Not bad for $275 with pigtails included and the lenses are flawless.



We are hoping to avoid this down the road.





Klasse_GT (fiero87@telia.com) MSG #318, 10-22-2013 03:52 PM
      All a real man needs is the right tools.......and some duck-tape.

Bloozberry MSG #319, 10-22-2013 06:06 PM
      Glad to hear yours are in excellent condition too... it's always a crap shoot when you order a used part on the internet. Do yours have the little round pads in them too... you know the ones that we hypothesized might be desiccant in mine?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #320, 10-22-2013 07:45 PM
      You know it...........



Bloozberry MSG #321, 11-02-2013 08:02 PM
      It's been over 2 weeks! Surely there must be some progress to report.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #322, 11-03-2013 07:00 PM
      Sadly, progress has been slow the last few weeks. Between traveling for work meetings and a 6 day work week, all I have time for is day dreaming and scribbling down design ideas during lunch. Plus, I had to unexpectedly install a new furnace in the house this week. That was $5000 directly out of my engine fund

On a positive note, I have a rough design for the wiper mechanism. Unfortunately, the passenger side of the Fiero dash structure is subdivided from the rest of the HVAC air box so there is going to be a little more metal to remove to allow the linkage to pass through to the new passenger side wiper pivot.

Once I have the 3D model of the mechanism finished, I'll post my design. Thanks for standing by.


whadeduck (richardjborton@gmail.com) MSG #323, 11-03-2013 09:22 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

It's been over 2 weeks! Surely there must be some progress to report.


I too wish to see some progress and stop calling him Shirley.



exoticse (exoticse@netzero.com) MSG #324, 11-05-2013 08:31 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Sadly, progress has been slow the last few weeks. Between traveling for work meetings and a 6 day work week, all I have time for is day dreaming and scribbling down design ideas during lunch. Plus, I had to unexpectedly install a new furnace in the house this week. That was $5000 directly out of my engine fund

On a positive note, I have a rough design for the wiper mechanism. Unfortunately, the passenger side of the Fiero dash structure is subdivided from the rest of the HVAC air box so there is going to be a little more metal to remove to allow the linkage to pass through to the new passenger side wiper pivot.

Once I have the 3D model of the mechanism finished, I'll post my design. Thanks for standing by.


How dare life get in the way of our fun !

I know your pain, i had to drop $5k of my fun money on a very similar situation to yours a couple of weeks back.

It was frustrating but necessary.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #325, 11-05-2013 10:15 AM
      And after all that...... my garage is still not heated.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #326, 11-09-2013 06:00 AM
      I finally got to sit down and finish my first draft of the wiper mechanism. As noted earlier in the thread, I am using an extended windshield on this build which will essentially cover the existing Fiero wipers. Thus, they have to be moved to a new loaction. Basically the drivers side wiper pivot will move directly forward a few inches and the passenger side wiper pivot will move forward and to the right to mirror the drivers side. This means that the wipers will be required to pivot towards each other ( a-la-mini van style). This also means that the passenger side wiper will have to move in reverse direction as apposed to the stock Fiero. To accomplish this, I redesigned the linkage so that there is an intermediate pivot arm located where the stock passenger wiper pivot was located. This additional pivot gave me the desired direction change.

Here are a few screen shots from different angles. Note the wiper mechanism currently is shown in mid sweep position for clarity of the drawings.









My plan for fabrication is to reuse the stock Fiero wiper pivots and rework the pivot arm shapes. The stock linkages have ball joints that are rivited to the linkages and so are not suitable for reuse. I've sourced some nice little ball pivot joints that allow for up to 37 deg of misalignment, are stainless steel and have little rubber dust boots. For the linkages, I've got some 3/8" x 0.049" wall stainless tubing that is plenty stiff and matches the ball pivot joints perfectly. While the drawings show the basic design, there are a number of things that still have to be worked out. First, I've drawn the mechanism in essentially a horizontal plane, however, in reality the front cowl area of the Fiero is anything but flat. Also, I have to mock up the linkages in the car and check for clearances for the moving linkages. Again, that front cowl area is a minefield of odd shapes and compartments. The hardest will be the passenger side as there appears to be more sheet metal ducting related to the hvac system I suspect.

I'll update again once I have the linkages mocked up similar to the drawings.

After previewing the update I see that the pivots are not that easy to see so I'll add a couple close up shots of them.





Bloozberry MSG #327, 11-09-2013 07:45 AM
      Love the 3D drawings! I'll bet those pivots are lawn tractor steering tie rod ends...

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #328, 11-09-2013 07:50 AM
      Not sure. I only have a push mower...ha-ha.

But I do have enough for two cars


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #329, 11-09-2013 08:06 AM
      They are pretty small. McMaster Carr PT # 6058K36



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #330, 11-11-2013 08:03 AM
      Here is the new wiper mechanism located in relation to the extended windshield. I still have to finalize the shape and orientation of the pivot lever arms to prevent binding and interference with the front cowl structure.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #331, 11-11-2013 11:18 AM
      Happy Remembrance Day to all the Veterans and Active Personnel of the Canadian Armed Forces.

Thank you for your service to our Country.



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #332, 11-12-2013 06:58 AM
      Love your attention to detail and the fact that you post it.



Bob

PS, I like your poppy reference. I just read about it yesterday.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #333, 11-17-2013 08:59 PM
      I continued work on the new wiper linkage this week once I had gathered up the bits and pieces I needed.

As I noted earlier, I am replacing the stock linkages with 316 SS tubing that is 3/8" OD x 0.049" wall. Its plenty stiff for the this duty. I am also using the 316 SS ball pivot joints for the ends of each linkage. I purchased some 316 SS 1/4" - 28 x 1 1/2" bolts which I removed the heads and then inserted them into the ends of the tubing linkages. They are a perfect fit and once I have finalized everything, I'll tig them in place.



They screw into the pivot joints and I added 2 thin jam nuts to help keep it all tight once installed.



For the center linkage pivot arm, I used a length of 316 SS 1" x 1/4" flat bar. I used a small sealed bearing (SKF 627 RS) and fabricated a support from a piece of 1" x 0.065" wall SS tubing. For the picture, I fitted a 1/4" bolt through the bearing but I'll have to machine a proper fitting bolt to fit the inner race. Once its all complete, I'll tig the bearing sleeve to the pivot arm.











I mocked up the entire linkage assembly just to see how it looks. The linkage rods are a few inches too long at this stage. Once I have everything finalized, I'll post the final linkage dimensions.







Here is a picture showing the stock drivers side wiper pivot and the new loaction. The outline of the extended windshield can be seen as the black marker line. Clearly, the stock location was going to be under the new windshield.



The next step will be to fabricate mounting plates for the wiper pivots so that they can be secured to the sheet metal. The reason for the mounting plates is that the stock location for the pivot was reinforced and the new loaction is just thin sheet metal. Here is a rendering of the mounting plate with the pivot mounted through it. I'll fabricate these from 1/8" aluminum plate and powdercoat them black.







Bloozberry MSG #334, 11-18-2013 12:32 PM
      Nice work Graham. Have you chosen your wiper arms yet? The stock Fiero arms obviously won't be long enough, as I'm sure you realize. Before you inextricably integrate the old Fiero wiper hub assemblies into your design, it might be wise to make sure that any new wiper arms have the same spline size and count as the Fiero hubs.

355Fiero MSG #335, 11-18-2013 02:46 PM
      Looks good Graham;

A couple items for you to think about when putting this together. I like the rod ends as well. I think I will be looking for those vs. the ones I used on my setup.

1. wiper arms. I was not able to find wiper arms that fit the Fiero hubs. I took the Fiero wiper arms and unhooked the spring and pulled the arms out of the bases. I then got some Neon wiper arms and took the arms out of the Neon bases. I mated the Neon arms into the Fiero bases and needed to drill a hole in the end of the Neon arm for the spring and also a hole into the arm to allow a rivet to go through everything to hold it in place. The Neon arms work perfectly and put the wiper connector in the middle of the screen height wise. I then bought 26" wipers to fit to the new arms.

2. When locating the hubs and the cross over arms, you may well find equipment in the way such as A/C dryer etc. I ended up with some bent arms on my setup to go around all the trunk equipment. That is where your rod ends will be better than mine where the rubber pieces will keep the arms up where they need to be where mine hang down.

3. The new locations of the wiper hubs will be outside the window screen tray. be aware though that the screen tray now covers your cowl inlets so there will be a deficit of air availability into the HVAC unit. I ended up cutting some 3" holes into teh cowl sides on the outside of the cowl area, just outside the hubs and welded in a 3" tube with screen over it on each side to provide some inlet air as well as keep water out for the inevitable wet days you get caught in.

4. I had to move my wiper motor over to the passenger side as well as there wasn't enough room to leave it where it was with my setup. Mine different than yours though as my passenger wiper is in the middle vs. the side like yours. I sealed up all the wiper holes in the cowl as well to keep the front trunk sealed off from the cowl.

5. I am not sure, but I think you are planning to push the passenger wiper arm though the cowl? If you are, you need to know there is a barrier over on the passenger side on the inside of where your arm will need to go to get to the passenger side hub. I ended up turning both my wiper hub arms around to be accessible in the front trunk to remove all mechanisms from the inner cowl. Once the tray is on there, you won't have any access to any of it as you seal the screen tray over the cowl as I stated above.

Have a look in my 288 GTO build thread on madmechanics if you are not sure what I am saying with anything above. I can also send pics if you need.

I am looking forward to seeing how you set it all up in the car.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #336, 11-18-2013 04:09 PM
      Thanks for the input Blooz and Don. To be honest, I assumed the arm pivots had a somewhat " universal spline" atleast as far as GM products go. I was going to pop the wipers off my Colorado and see how they fit. I will make sure I have found a suitable arm and blade arrangement before finalizing the installation.

With regard to the location of the mechanism, I am planning on running them through the same location as the stock linkages. As well, my car has no air conditioning so I don't have anything inside the cowl. I am aware that the passenger side has a barrier and I am just working on a way to gain access, similar to the drivers side. There is a nice big access panel on the drivers side from inside the dash.

My plans for getting more air into the hvac plenum is to duct the 355 front hood vent through the front firewall. Again, I have no AC so there is not much there to get in the way.

I have mocked everything up and I don't think I'll have to move the wiper motor. One thing I do have to do but have not mentioned yet is to cut the stock pivot arms off and flip them over so that they are angled downward. The reason is that I am also rotating them 180 degrees from the stock position so that they are on the aft side of the pivot as apposed to the fwd side of the pivot which is stock. This is because I have to move them so far forward towards the front fire wall.

I'll check out your build Don and try to "borrow" some ideas.

Again, thanks for the tips guys.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #337, 11-18-2013 09:24 PM
      Well, as Don had mentioned, there is a barrier / divider on the passenger side of the front air cowl that is blocking access to the revised passenger side wiper pivot location. But like most things on the Fiero chassis, once you identify the part you want to remove and locate the few strategic spot welds that GM thoughtfully used, it's just a matter of pursuading them to let go.

The divider is located inside the cowl just passed the depressed channel.



And here is the divider once its removed.



Now its wide open with lots of room for the passenger side wiper pivot.



On the drivers side of the cowl, there is a generous sized removeable panel behind the console that will provide access to the drivers side wiper pivot and linkages.



I need to make a similar access panel on the passenger side and there is lots of room for one.



Here is the linkage connected to the wiper motor arm. I shouldn't have to move the wiper motor as there is ample room for everything to rotate.



Here is the linkage connected to the drivers side wiper pivot. There is just enough room for the pivot arm to swing.......... I hope.



355Fiero MSG #338, 11-19-2013 03:22 PM
      Ah, that is what the barrier looks like...... Nicely done. I just took a driver to it to make more room for the air to pass through from my air hole on the passenger side.

Your response about the wiper blades, I understand but honestly, it took me 20 minutes to make new wiper arms using the Fiero bases and Neon arms. You will spend more time looking at cars ina pick and pull than that to find similar bases and then most likely have to rework the arms anyway as they won't be perfect lengths etc..... Just a thought.

The other thing to think about when doing the extended screen and the wipers inside the cowl is your defroster vent setup. With the wiper arms inside the cowl, you might be restricted in how far forward you can move your defroster vents with the extended screen tray. I made new defroster vents that fit in the cowl and were up near the front of the screen to get full coverage on the screen. Not a huge issue but everyone I have talked to that put the defroster vent more or less where the stock Fiero defroster vent goes, says that the lower half of the screen never fully clears from any moisture if you get out there. The fact that you are most likely driving these on nice, dry days, won't give you any grief but just more thoughts I went through as I finished off the extended screen setup and wipers.

Keep up the great work guys as these are coming out beautifully.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #339, 11-19-2013 03:38 PM
      Hi Don

I have certainly considered your idea of modifying the stock wiper arms. I wanted to have a look at them before I commented. I agree that is much easier to do than search high and low for alternatives. As well, if the wiper arm pivots are unique to the Fiero, that will be a big problem.

Considering I have removed my roof and have no plans for a soft top, the need for wipers, HVAC, window defrosters, etc is probably minimal. Truth be known, I'm just looking for things to do until Blooz finishes his rear suspension so we can get going on the bodies ha-ha

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-26-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #340, 11-19-2013 06:24 PM
      What???! Last time I peeked in your garage there was still a big hole where the squirrel cage goes.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #341, 11-19-2013 06:29 PM
      Oh that? Yes, there is a large unused space behind the seats. Not sure what to use it for.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 11-19-2013).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #342, 11-21-2013 07:53 PM
      I have been giving lots of thought to the question regarding a suitable wiper arm and blade combination for the extended windshield and modified wiper arm positions. The stock Fiero wiper blade is 18" and mocking up the arms based on the new pivot locations, it appeared a 24" blade would certainly fit. Just for curiousity sake, I ran over to Canadian Tire and bought a 24" economy wiper blade. Here are the results using the stock wiper arms with the upgraded 24" blades. I swept both arms while tracing the blade tips with a Sharpie. Considering that my car will probably see very little rain and in Yarmouth, you're more likely to get hit with Seagull splatter, I think the blade upgrade might just do the trick.





fieroguru MSG #343, 11-21-2013 08:06 PM
      Looks like it will work!
The trick will be keeping the two blades from hitting each other!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #344, 11-21-2013 08:10 PM
      I agree Fieroguru, that is still untested as of yet. I just got my animation upgrade for Rhino, so as soon as I get time to learn it, I'll hopefully be able to add the animation to my designs.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #345, 12-15-2013 08:15 PM
      Well the year is almost over and I figured I better get a new post entered before the holidays. I'm still fabricating components for the new wiper arrangement and its been a slow process. I made the new mounting plates for the wiper pivots using 316 SS plate but I was not happy with the quality so they found a home in the scrap bucket. I made a second set out of aluminum plates and I am happy with how they turned out. Here are a couple pics. I used nylock nuts but I think I'll swap them for acorn nuts.... just for cosmetic reasons. I'll add lock washers as well.







With the pivots mounted, I can now finalize the linkage lengths and get the whole thing installed and tested. Fingers crossed that it doesn't bind or vibrate.


Bloozberry MSG #346, 01-04-2014 04:05 PM
     

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #347, 01-08-2014 08:59 AM
      I know... I know......... I have not been fulfilling my duties to keep things progressing and my followers up to date. Anyone else find the month of December went by way to fast?

On a good note, work is very busy and bidding a project that would keep us going to 2018. Unfortunately, it has the same effect on the project car.

The wiper mods are proving to be a little more challenging since the passenger side cowl doesn't have near the room for my linkages as the drivers side so I'm working to " open things up". The wiper mechanism is complete and the mounting plates are out for powdercoating.

I also have material on hand to build the lower mounting flange for the extended windshield. I'm going to use 1 1/2" x 1 1/2" x 1/8" angle, with one flange almost removed so that when I roll it into the desired arc, it will lay back to match the slope of the windshield glass. Also, since most of the original hvac cowl openings are now going to be inside the extended windshield, I'll be fabricating covering plates to seal things up.

Once it warms up enough for the fluorescent lights to come on in my garage, I'll get some updated photos.

Thanks for standing by and I hope everyone has a prosperous and healthy 2014.


Bloozberry MSG #348, 01-20-2014 12:55 PM
      OK, OK... what are your excuses this month? You could make any of those South of the border believe that it was too cold to work in the shop, except I know better. It's been above freezing for two straight weeks now. So where's the progress? Hmmm? Poke poke...

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #349, 01-25-2014 12:47 PM
      Finally, the first weekend in months that we aren't traveling the province for high school hockey tournements or working. Sorry for the slow progress.

The wiper pivot plates are powdercoated and I test fitted them to the front cowl. Unfortunately, there are alot of stainless steel fasteners visible but using the carriage bolts made it look a little less cluttered. Now I can cut the linkages to their final length and test the new wiper configuration for interference.







I have started on the fabrication of the new lower windshield support for the extended windshield. Most of the existing openings in the stock cowl will have to be covered as they will lie inside the extended windshield. With the slope of the new glass approximately 25 degrees, my plan was to cut down a 1 1/2" x 1 1/2" x 1/8" angle to 1 1/2" x 3/4" x 1/8" and then roll it to the shape of the lower edge of the glass. I wasn't happy with the results of the first attempt so I have decided to cut the two parts from 1/8" plate and weld them together for the desired angle and curvature. Here is a drawing of how I would like it to fit to the glass.





Btw... today it's 2 degree C in the garage Blooz so you are right.... no excuses there.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #350, 01-26-2014 04:39 PM
      Today I made a cardboard template of the plate that will cover all the stock holes and openings in the lower windshield cowl. I have a nice sheet of stainless steel that I might make the covering plate out of since it will be hard to paint the underside once it's welded in place. I also laid out the curved plate that will form the lower edge of the windshield flange for the extended windshield. It certainly reaches forward a long way, almost to the front compartment.





Bloozberry MSG #351, 01-26-2014 06:09 PM
      Excellent! Bear in mind that a fairly thick portion of the windshield forward edge is done in black fader tape. I'll have to go measure to see how far up from the base of the windshield it goes, but as I recall it's a good 4" - 5" or so. That means you can probably bridge the top edge of your curved piece with another flat, horizontal crescent shaped section all the way over to the OEM windshield flange.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #352, 01-26-2014 06:18 PM
      Thanks Blooz. I never considered to have a second surface under the glass. I think before I do the final welding, I may attempt to bring home a windshield to confirm the shape and location is correct. I think the yellow template we made was a pretty close match though.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #353, 01-26-2014 06:27 PM
      Here is a good picture of our windshields. You are right about the wide frit but its at the top.

My mistake. That was comparing a stock windshield against the template of our extended windshield.



Here is a picture of the extended windshield showing the wide frit along the bottom.

edit: remove photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #354, 01-26-2014 06:48 PM
      Just for clarification, I am planning to put a vertical 3/4" x 1/8" flatbar along the entire length of the edge of the windshield mounting surface. For the picture I just used a short piece of flatbar to hold the part at the correct angle.



Bloozberry MSG #355, 01-26-2014 09:25 PM
      I forgot to measure the "frit" (weird word...to me, that's just French fry in French.) Anyways, the point I was trying to make earlier is that we'll need something to support the leading edge of the extended dash board to. Leaving it hollow between the OEM windshield mount and your new mount may make that difficult. Your thoughts?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #356, 01-27-2014 05:40 AM
      Yes, I agree about not leaving a void that could cause a problem later. After reading your post again last night I suddenly realized what you meant by " horizontal crescent shaped section". Perhaps I could fill in part of the area with a horizontal plate or a series of longitudinal flat bars to offer support to the dash. I do need to keep the center area open for access to wiper pivot mechanism. I'll proceed with the cowl covering plate and the lower windshield mounting surface and then come up with a suitable solution to the issue you pointed out. Perhaps an elegant solution will present itself by then.

355Fiero MSG #357, 01-27-2014 01:52 PM
      Graham;

Looking nice. Remember that by the time the screen in in place, you will be very hard pressed to get access into the front curved section of the extended screen/dash. Keeping an access panel available for fixing the wiper mechanisms is a good idea, however, getting at it from the top may well be problematic. The angle, room under the screen in that area is pretty limited. Put the plastic screen template you have in place or even the screen and see how much hand/arm room you have to do any work on the mechanism pivot with it all in place and see whether it still works out. I don't think it will once the screen is in place if I remember correctly.

One suggestion is to create a plate in the centre of the front firewall from the cockpit side similar to what you did for the passenger side pivot, or do the same in the front trunk wall of the cowl.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #358, 01-27-2014 02:21 PM
      Thanks for the input Don. I know exactly what you mean. The glass is going to be very low and close to the dash. From inside, all I have to reach is the nut on the top of the center pivot sticking up. For actual access to the pivot, your suggestion is spot on. When I open the front of the firewall to make the new air intake that will line up with the front hood vent, I am hoping there is enough room to get my fingers inside the cowl area. If not, I'll have to do something from the back side of the front firewall, although its pretty crowded with dash controls and supply ducting.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #359, 02-09-2014 08:36 PM
      Well, I'm still chipping away at the task of covering up the front cowl to accomodate the extended windshield. I went with a piece of 16 gauge 316 stainless steel since it won't be easy to paint the underside of the sheet once its welded in place and it will be exposed to the damp Nova Scotia salt air as it passes through the hvac system. It was alot of work making it fit just right over the curves and bumps of the front cowl area. I'll make an accurate drawing / template of the finished plate incase anyone else decides to modify their cowl too.









With the cowl covering plate laying in place, I laid the lower windshield flange on top to give an idea of how it will look. That is my second attempt at the flange and it still needs tweeking........ or replacing with a third attempt.



Next step will be to get it all fitting exactly how I want it and then tack it in place. I'm still thinking about testing the shape with one of my extended windshields before final welding. At the moment, they are hibernating at Blooz's place for the winter. Just gotta find the time to get it all done before the spring. Still lots of High School hockey season left. Here's my youngest, #9, who you've seen throughout this thread, cutting hard for the net. GO VIKINGS!

edit: remove photo of family member

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-23-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #360, 02-09-2014 09:55 PM
      The cowl plate look good Graham... don't be throwing away any templates!

355Fiero MSG #361, 02-11-2014 07:23 PM
      Very nice Graham;

Keep it up and the screen will be fitting soon.

I am a couple weeks away from mounting my extended screen for good..... Very exciting day when that comes.

Stay warm out there these days buddy. I am looking at having to cut the lawn again soon..... getting pretty long.

Take care
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #362, 02-11-2014 07:58 PM
      Thanks Don. Sorry to hear you'll have to start mowing the grass so early in the year. That has gotta be a downer...

Good luck with the glass mounting..... and be gentle with it. That is certainly a major milestone for your project.


Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #363, 02-12-2014 08:31 AM
      Still following and am more amazed than ever.

The wipers are nothing short of "masterpiece" status, and I'm sure the windshield will turn out the same way.

You may never know how great it is for the rest of us to have a build like this to look at and marvel, and use as a source of guidance and inspiration. Maybe there's something in the water north of the border?

Keep up the good work, and don't forget to keep us all updated!


HAGO!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #364, 02-12-2014 10:38 AM
      Thank you for the kind words Sage. All I can say about the water north of the board is that it's still frozen solid.... probably much like it is in your neck of the woods.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #365, 03-11-2014 06:00 PM
      For fear of falling completely off the bottom of the first page of the construction zone, I figured I better post an update.........asap!

The wiper system is pretty much finalized and the parts are out getting tig welded. Once I have it all back and assembled, I'll post the final drawing and various components used.

I have also been researching suspension components and have decided to go with the Arraut wide track system. To start with, I'm going to use their rear control arm with bump steer correction. As per instructions detailed by Richard at Arraut, I made the necessary modifications to the stock rear spindles, including the removal of the steering stop tab, that vestigial lump of steel left over from the GM front wheel drive arrangements.







In an effort to make the spindles a little more attractive, I also removed some of the excess flashing left over from when the parts were originally cast. The spindles were then sent to be cleaned up and powder coated. While the original wheel bearing assemblies have low mileage and seem to be tight, they are 29 years old, thus I ordered two new bearing assemblies from the local autoparts store.

While I wait for everything to come back, I did some online shopping and picked up a set of four used Ferrari 355 tail lights for my build. They are not in flawless condition but they are a complete set of LH and RH inner and outer units so I think they'll suffice.



Like many of you, I'm waiting patiently for spring to arrive and a bit of natural warmth for my garage. I've never been a big fan of wearing wool mittens while I work on my car.

Edit: for poor grammer

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 03-11-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #366, 03-11-2014 07:20 PM
      Nice find on the lights... they do come up every now and then on eBay but they don't usually last very long.

As for the knuckle mods, I seem to remember someone saying earlier that the mods irreversibly change them so you can't convert back to a stock config even if you wanted to. So far, I don't see how removing the steering stop affects anything. Are there other changes? Lookin' good BTW.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #367, 03-11-2014 07:48 PM
      Thanks Blooz. Yes, the other significant mod to the spindle is to drill the tapered steering arm hole to accept a straight 5/8" bolt. I guess that would be considered irreversible. I'm not concerned because going to a wide track control arm means I am never going back to stock suspension anyway. After all the chassis mods I've done, going stock again is in the rearview mirror.

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #368, 03-13-2014 06:32 AM
      Hopefully it's not too late, but I would suggest that you pitch those stock uprights and get the larger bearing uprights of the GM intermediates. The widened suspension and big wheels will abuse those stock bearings. The larger bearings were available on the Pontiac 6000 and Celebrity wagon (and a few others)/ It will also give you larger vented brakes (although I know you're already doing that), and a larger hub face with 115x5 bolt pattern. Using this upright, you can also use the S10 bearing with the 4.75x5 bolt pattern.

Bob

[This message has been edited by RCR (edited 03-13-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #369, 03-13-2014 06:47 PM
      Hi Bob

Thanks for the info and suspension suggestions. Since I am seriously looking at the Arraut wide track upgrades that are based on the stock spindles, I didn't really consider looking at other vehicle offerings. As well, my automotive knowledge and experience is quite limited so I really wouldn't even know where to start looking for alternatives. On top of that, I am committed to the Fiero bolt pattern as my wheels are sitting on a rack in my shop.

One thing I am learning about this project is that it's way too easy to get bogged down in the research to the point where making a decision becomes stressful. ha-ha-ha

But please keep offering suggestions and alternative ways of doing things. Its a great learning experience for me.


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #370, 03-14-2014 05:53 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Hi Bob

Thanks for the info and suspension suggestions. Since I am seriously looking at the Arraut wide track upgrades that are based on the stock spindles, I didn't really consider looking at other vehicle offerings. As well, my automotive knowledge and experience is quite limited so I really wouldn't even know where to start looking for alternatives. On top of that, I am committed to the Fiero bolt pattern as my wheels are sitting on a rack in my shop.


No problemo... I'm sure it will work out.

 
quote
One thing I am learning about this project is that it's way too easy to get bogged down in the research to the point where making a decision becomes stressful. ha-ha-ha


I hear you. It can be a time consuming pain in the butt.

 
quote
But please keep offering suggestions and alternative ways of doing things. Its a great learning experience for me.


Will do...

Overall, it looks great.

Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #371, 03-16-2014 07:45 PM
      Tonight I got the rear spindles back from the powdercoater so I slipped in a new bearing assembly just to see how they look and take a picture. As you can see, I will be carrying the gold theme from the rollover hoops down through the suspension components. Hopefully it will look ok with the black car body.......one day.





whadeduck (richardjborton@gmail.com) MSG #372, 03-17-2014 08:01 PM
      Now just how are you going to get those spindles back on the car with that vice attached to them like that?



Klasse_GT (fiero87@telia.com) MSG #373, 04-22-2014 03:42 PM
      bump

Danyel MSG #374, 05-02-2014 11:21 AM
      Wow what a build !!! added to my favourites ...
Danyel


BlackThunderGT MSG #375, 05-02-2014 11:46 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Danyel:

Wow what a build !!! added to my favourites ...
Danyel


X2


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #376, 05-02-2014 06:04 PM
      Hi everyone, sorry for the slow progress lately. Work has been all consuming as our latest project approaches completion. Its a 400 passenger ferry for the City of Halifax and is named after a local soldier who gave his life in Afganistan. We were also the successful bidder for 3 more identical vessels so its going to be a busy few years ahead.

The M/V Chistopher Stannix





As well, I lost my mom recently following a very brief battle with liver cancer. That took the wind out of all our sails.

Once life gets back to normal in a few weeks I'll be right back at the project where I left off. Hope you can stay tuned.

Regards

Graham



Neils88 (nellerin@dal.ca) MSG #377, 05-02-2014 08:22 PM
      Sorry to hear about your mother. Our thoughts are with you.

I very happy that the ferry has been named after a fallen soldier. I lived in Halifax for more than 20 years...used those ferries all the time.


Bloozberry MSG #378, 05-02-2014 08:27 PM
      Sorry to hear about your mom, Graham. You had told me earlier, but again, my condolences.

(The ferry looks awesome... glad to see you guys pulled it off on schedule!)


Sourmug MSG #379, 05-02-2014 10:31 PM
      My condolences to you and your family, I know it's tough, I lost my Mom just over a year ago to cancer as well.

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #380, 05-02-2014 11:40 PM
      My condolences to you for the loss of your mother. Went through that myself in 08, remember the good times.

Ferry looks great. Now we see where you got to hone your skills! I'm guessing you get paid for it too

Take your time with the build, we'll be here whenever you get back to it, just be sure to keep taking pics and posting em'.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #381, 05-04-2014 03:02 PM
      Thank you everyone for your condolences. My mom was one of my first passengers the day I brought my new Fiero home in 85. She had such a smile because it reminded her of when she toured Europe in her red MG while teaching english in the 60's. She had always been a supporter of my project car and she smiled and nodded approval as I described my plans during her many visits to my garage. She left it to my dad to point out the large quantity of rocks I must surely have inside my head...ha-ha-ha.

I got to spend my 50th birthday with her in the Palliative Care Unit. She passed away the next morning with all our family by her side. I will find some appropriate way to include a tribute to her as the project developes.

Again, thank you for your support.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 05-04-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #382, 05-04-2014 03:41 PM
      With everything else going on in life, I still try to find some time to lapse into a project state of mind. I suspect like most of us on this forum, our project cars are a place of solitude to escape to when we feel the need to relax and unwind from our hectic lives.

I have been focusing on the rear suspension lately as it will be an important aspect which requires resolution not only get the chassis rolling but also find an acceptable compromise between the requirements of the widened track of the 355 body, the lowered and limited suspension travel available and still utilize off the shelf components that will provide some measureable increase in performance over the stock 85 suspension.

As always, I start by drawing the known components I have, in 3D so I have a starting point to build on. The wheels are done and next are the new wheel bearings. I also included a sample 13" rotor with hat that I suspect willl be similar to the pieces I will use.





The next part that I am currently working on is the rear spindle. Those castings and complex to measure and draw accurately but worth the effort as they will allow me to get a good idea of the control arm requirements.


Bloozberry MSG #383, 05-05-2014 03:57 PM
      Simply amazing 3D drawings Graham. Have you decided whether you're going to buy custom length Arraut Motorsports arms yet or is the jury still out?


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #384, 05-05-2014 08:13 PM
      Thanks Blooz. I am still thinking the Arraut bump steer corrected rear control arms. Once I have the spindle drawn, I will put it all together and match your track width and see what I come up with for arm length.

BlackThunderGT MSG #385, 05-05-2014 11:35 PM
      My condolences for the loss of your mother.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #386, 06-06-2014 09:35 AM
      Well, this project is now in service and carrying passengers in Halifax as of last night. Been a long couple months with work and personal matters. Now its time to get back to the NS 355 project. Thanks for your patience.



Bloozberry MSG #387, 06-06-2014 12:04 PM
      Who are you trying to kid... we read in the newspaper that your company won the contract to make another three(?) of these ferries. There's a pool out on the streets where people are betting to see how long it will be before the car gets listed on eBay.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #388, 06-06-2014 03:00 PM
      Really?? Ouch. Are you kidding? Do you see that SS exhaust system on the ferry? I've been honing my skills for my future 180 degree headers and I have a tonne of 8 inch diameter SS pipe squirreled away for the exhaust on my car.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #389, 06-18-2014 12:43 PM
      Lately it seems progress has been slow with regards to actual fabrication. I have been spending lots of time researching and trying a few new design ideas for the project. I have been focused on the rear end and specifiaclly the brakes and suspension. Its amazing how much time it takes to draw cast parts like the rear spindle/ knuckle in 3D. With regards to researching for suitable brake components, I think its even more difficult than selecting wheels.

I also added a SBC 350 to my 3D model and started dabbling in 180 header designs. With the 6" + track width increase, I am considering moving my strut towers outward 3" per side. Here are three screen shots showing the SBC in place with the stock and modified strut towers as well as an intial start on 180 degree headers.

SBC with stock strut towers


SBC with modified strut towers


SBC with initial styling of 180 degree headers


Clearly I don't have the engine located in the exact spot but its close enough to give me an idea of how it will all fit. Moving the strut towers outward really opens up the engine bay and may allow me to run half of the headers around the passenger side of the engine bay. I am also prepared to remove most or all of the trunk and make the space available for the 180 headers and exhaust components and make them a feature of the engine bay.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 06-21-2014).]

fieroguru MSG #390, 06-18-2014 02:20 PM
      From the looks of things, the engine is around 3" too far to the driver side in your drawing. Final side to side placement depends on which adapter plate you use (Archie = 1" or Zumalt knockoff = 1/2 to 5/8") and if you are willing to notch the driver side or passenger side frame rails. Here is a SBC swap that used an Archie adapter plate. The rear bolt on the valve cover is almost dead center to the chassis.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #391, 06-18-2014 02:52 PM
      Thank you for the information sir. Great picture too.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #392, 06-18-2014 03:05 PM
      You have a keen eye Fieroguru, my engine was off about 3 1/4"

SBC location corrected.


Perhaps this is the frame notching you are refering too Fieroguru?
Would you care to make a suggestion regarding the current height of my SBC based on the location of the crankshaft and the lower frame rail? I would appreciate your input.



[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 06-18-2014).]

fieroguru MSG #393, 06-18-2014 03:54 PM
      I always place the engine/transmission as low as possible and try to get the oil pan flush with the bottom of the cradle.

Here is a picture of the crankshaft centerline well below the bottom of the frame rail:


The engine still needs to be further to the PS frame rail. There normally is about 1 3/4" between the 2 rear water pump bolt holes on the engine block and the frame rail. Your accessory drive shown should be nearly completely through the DS frame rail (that is unless you want to notch the DS frame rail for transmission clearance):



Bloozberry MSG #394, 06-19-2014 03:22 PM
      Way cool drawings there Graham... way cool.

You've just discovered the difference between Archie's V8 adapter kit and the Zumalt knock off kits. The Archie kit with the thicker adapter plate ends up making the water pump pulley interfere with the lower frame rail on the passenger side, so his solution was to extend a shaft from the ends of the crank and water pump pulleys to relocate the pulleys on the outside of the frame rail. Later options included low profile electric water pumps. The Zumalt kit used a thinner adapter plate, a shorty-style water pump with a single V-belt drive pulley on the crank, which kept the pulleys inside the engine bay. That however necessitated a notch in the driver's side lower frame rail to accommodate the transmission though. So there are pros and cons to either approach with the bottom line being that there simply isn't enough room between the frame rails without some compromises.

The adapter I sold you several years ago is an Archie style adapter, though I'm not certain who actually made it.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #395, 06-19-2014 03:30 PM
      Thanks Blooze. The 3D is alot of work but its so easy to move things around once they are drawn. The engine model is a generic engine set up. I had always thought about using a remote electric water pump and I don't have any air conditioning or power steering so the belts and pullys will be minimal. I'm still searching for a good 3D model of the 6 speed manual gearbox. I suppose the adapter plate I have now may not suit that. With regard to frame chopping, I've gotten good at that so I don't mind doing whatever is necessary once I have my engine and transmission sitting in my garage. I am still thinking that I'll move the strut towers out in hopes that it provide a little more room for whatever I may decide to do next.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 06-19-2014).]

HarryG (hg4570@sbcglobal.net) MSG #396, 06-19-2014 04:11 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:

I always place the engine/transmission as low as possible and try to get the oil pan flush with the bottom of the cradle.

Here is a picture of the crankshaft centerline well below the bottom of the frame rail:


That looks like Archie's front mount; do you modify it to gain more adjustability?


fieroguru MSG #397, 06-19-2014 04:22 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by HarryG:
That looks like Archie's front mount; do you modify it to gain more adjustability?


Yes. I cut 1/2" off the very bottom, filled the half holes and drilled 2 new mounting holes. I also cut 1/2" off the bottom of the adapter plate and notched the cradle for the starter.


fieroguru MSG #398, 06-19-2014 04:31 PM
      If you mount the engine with the oil pan close to being flush, then the strut towers don't cause any interference issues.

Since you want to do a SBC/F40, you might find this thread beneficial as that was my plan too before I went to the darkside (LS4).
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/A...120111-2-099565.html

I was using a 1/8" adapter plate and a serpentine belt drive with the L31 timing cover and barely fit within the stock frame rails. With the Zumalt adapter plate, you probably have room for a V-belt balancer and the F40. The serpentine balancer or the Archie adapter plate will require a frame notch on one side or the another.

Here is a overall picture of the SBC/F40 combo - notice the engine is further to the DS than the earlier SBC picture I posted. Then pictures of the clearance on each side.




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #399, 06-19-2014 08:37 PM
      Wow, that is certainly a tight fit. Thanks for the photos Fieroguru. Hopefully my 3" chassis stretch may help a little in way of reducing frame interference.... but clearly not enough.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #400, 06-23-2014 09:12 PM
      Keeping with the theme of moving the strut towers outward about 3" per side to match the increase in track width, I started removing the sheet metal connecting the upper and lower frame rails forward of the strut towers. The stock sheet metal is arched to form the wheelwells on both sides of the engine bay, however, with the increase in the rear track, there is going to be plenty of room to square the replacement sheetmetal off thus providing a little more room in the engine bay.

Here are a couple screen shots showing the difference in stock and revised strut locations as well as the difference in chassis sheet metal from stock to revised.

Stock strut tower and sheet metal




Proposed strut tower and sheet metal




My chassis has been essentially clear of any rust but as I started removing the sheet metal, lo and behold, there was some rust on the inside face of the upper frame rail. Its easy to see why the Fiero chassis is so susceptible to rust in this location. Clearly the chassis design is deeply flawed with regard to rust prevention.... much like all three of my Grand Caravans over the years.





I'll repeat this process of sheet metal removal on the passenger side while retaining the strut towers in the best possible condition for reuse.


Bloozberry MSG #401, 06-23-2014 10:32 PM
      Love the 3D drawings. The concept to move the strut towers outboard by 3" is a great "thinking outside the box" idea too. Since you're going to be cutting them out and relocating them, it might make sense to raise them as far as you dare in order to re-gain some of the strut travel lost due to lowering the car. You also want to make sure that by moving the strut towers outboard that you're not going to run into strut/tire clearance issues too.

Regarding the extra room in the engine bay by squaring off the sheet metal in front of the struts, you might also consider going the other way and making more room ahead of the wheel wells instead. That's what I'm doing to make room for the side saddle radiators. Not sure what your plans are for the rad though.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #402, 06-24-2014 07:32 AM
      Thanks Blooz. I have been considering the option of raising the towers as much as possible and you had mentioned in a PM or email that you might soon be sitting the rear section of your 355 body on your chassis in order to size up the rear structure mods required. That might be a great opportunity for me to have a look at just how high I can go. As well, while I said I am planning to reuse the stock towers, I am also considering the option to fabricate new custom towers that will better suit the new rear strut dimensions and location. The stock rear struts and springs are much larger diameter than the coil overs I am looking at and it just doesn't make sense to keep such large strut towers. I have a few ideas for replacing them that would have the required strength plus add a modern and unique look to the engine bay. Gotta keep up with the Jones's

With regard to perhaps using twin radiators forward of the rear wheels, I have pretty much accepted the fact that my rocker frame reinforcements associated with chopping my roof off have made that option impractical. I looked at several options but there just isn't enough room to do it right. So I'll incorporate some engine bay cooling air on one side and engine combustion air on the other side. For the engine rad, I'll just fit a good quality 4 core in the stock location.

note: edit typos

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 06-24-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #403, 06-24-2014 03:15 PM
      Yarmouth;

The rear clip on the panels I sent you guys only has about 1" clearance above the strut towers. If you move them out as you are thinking, you will gain more room under the rear top raised section. Maybe an additional 2"?

As for moving the towers out, I made a plate setup that moved the strut out toward the frame rail. I essentially, turned the strut top around so the two outer mounts were now the inner mounts and made a flat plate setup to mount the third strut mount bolt to the outside. I kept the same angle etc. of the strut tower to not change the geometry and used coil overs on the struts. The coilover clears the inside of the upper rear frame rail by about 1/2" through full travel. The other item to make sure you do is to invert the mount bolts so you are tightening the nut from the wheel well as there is very little room on the top with the convertible clip on it.

A quick pic of how I made the strut top extension. Hopefully it comes through from Photobucket.



Cheers
Don

[This message has been edited by 355Fiero (edited 06-24-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #404, 06-24-2014 03:20 PM
      Thanks for the info Don. That is very helpful.

Did you have a chance to look at the chassis jpg's I sent you?


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #405, 07-02-2014 09:55 AM
      Still working on the rear suspension posibilities, including selecting suitable brake and suspension components as well as modifying the rear structure of the car to suit the selected components.

To start with, I have been looking at possible brake components. I've narrowed the search to Wilwood products as they have a good selection, a good reputation and I like their website. For rotors, I am looking at the Wilwood SRP Drilled and Slotted 12.9" dia. x 0.81" thick with aluminum hat having the 5 x 100 bolt pattern and a 0.71" offset.



I've added these components to my 3D model to see how the parts fit. As suspected, the rotor interfers with a boss on the stock spindle casting. Part is colored red in the drawing. It should be a small matter to remove.







I have not selected brake calipers yet but I'm considering the Wilwood Forged Superlite 4 piston lug mounted model. First I'll draw them and add them to my model to see how they fit.





Here are a couple pics showing the assembly together with the wheel. Note, the drawing shown is the rear wheel which is 18 x 9 with 38mm offset.



As I had mentioned earlier, I have roughly set the rear track width based on the rear body panels that Blooz and I will be using. This results in an approximate 4" per side track width increase. My plan is to move the strut towers outward to compensate for the new track width. My dilemma is deciding if the struts should move outward the entire 4" or use some combination of strut offset bracket at the spindle and strut outward relocation. As can be seen in the last pic, the strut is going to be very close to the inside edge of the wheel if its bolted directly to the stock spindle. Any thoughts or experience to offer relating to this matter would be greatly appreciated.



As a final note, the drawing of the spindle casting surface is not 100% accurate although I think I've captured most of the important measurements and features. Also, the rotor and hat drawn have an 8 x 7" bolt pattern where as I am considering the models with 12 x 8.75". I'll update the drawing once I have made my final selection.


355Fiero MSG #406, 07-02-2014 02:57 PM
      Yarmouth Fiero;

You will not be able to push the struts out the full 4" without impacting the upper rear frame rail. The most I could move mine out, with coilovers was about 3" so I needed to use a 1" spacer I built to connect the strut to the rear hub. You also then gain some needed clearance on the rim. My strut also hit my rim without the spacer but your offset is probably different than mine was.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #407, 07-02-2014 03:30 PM
      Thanks Don. Looking at the chassis and my drawing I could see 4" was pushing it. I agree a 3" move will be the maximum and then a 1" strut spacer. Did your spacer also include a drop to lower the strut bottom as much as possible with regard to the spindle? You also mentioned maybe gaining some height by raising the strut tower but looking at photos I took last summer when Blooz and I put your rear body work on my chassis, I don't see alot of room to raise the strut tower. Am I missing something?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #408, 07-02-2014 08:19 PM
      Here are a couple shots with a generic strut in place. Looks like there will be lots of wheel clearance without the strut offset bracket on the spindle.





Bloozberry MSG #409, 07-02-2014 08:39 PM
      Are you widening the rear track by 4" on each side? For comparison's sake, I only widened my rear end 3" per side as measured from the wheel mounting surface on the brake hat to the center line of the car. By using 9" wide wheels with a 45mm offset my new half-track width (tire centerline to car centerline) is 832mm though, so if your wheels are different, then you'll need to account for that accordingly.

Take my measurements with a grain of salt though because I designed my rear suspension width using my old 355 body. But since we're going to be using Don's body as a plug for our moulds, and given that Don reshaped the rear fender openings significantly, my rear track may be a little too narrow now. I should know for sure sometime next week when I get back into working on the car.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #410, 07-02-2014 08:54 PM
      Thanks Blooz. Yes, at this point I am just locating my suspension in the general area +/- 1" so I can get an idea of where my strut towers "may" need to go. I won't make any final decisions until we have a real good look at that body on your chassis. You had given me a rough measurement based on the outside edge of your tires and that was my starting point. Modeling the brake components is a safe bet at this time so that once we have the definitive dimension for rear track, then I can move ahead with the strut tower locations and then lower control arms. With the components modeled in 3D, I can move them around with little effort and try a variety of "what if" scenarios. Its a powerful tool but I spend a lot of time developing the drawings. You know all about that right?

Bloozberry MSG #411, 07-02-2014 09:09 PM
      Ooooooh yeah... you got that right.

I promise it won't be long before I get you come good dimensions to work with.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #412, 07-02-2014 09:15 PM
      If and when you need a second tape measure, I'm ready to hit the road.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #413, 07-03-2014 07:10 AM
      With regard to moving the strut towers out more than 3", you are quite right Don ( 355Fiero ). Here is the 3" track width increase and the strut just clears the upper frame rail. If I require any more than 3" track width per side, I will either have to use an offset spacer at the spindle/ strut connection or cut into the upper frame rail. I think the use of a spacer at the spindle would be the easiest solution for sure.





355Fiero MSG #414, 07-04-2014 04:04 AM
      Ha ha Had no reason to lie to you..... Just a joke.

If you don't use the 1" spacer on the hub, your rear strut geometry changes from oem during compression etc. so I sued the spacer to make sure the strut tower stayed the same angle. I didn't use the lowering in the spacer. That was one of the issues I had with the car was by the time I got the body on and everything lowered to where I wanted it, the rear cradle was only a few inches off the ground. I suggest you and Dave get your ride height to where you want it, put the panel son and then cut them up a bit more to lower the fender wells down a bit more to give a nice gap without slamming the frame to the ground to do it. The fender gap and ride height have always been one of the main issues with the 355 replicas on the Fieros.

Also, you are right. There won't be any room under the rear clip to raise the strut tower to help lower the frame much. It was pretty close at stock height under the body. You might get a bit more room if you move the strut towers outward like you were saying as there is a bit more room in the centre of the rear clip area. The engine cover lip was the limiting factor where it was only about 1" above the strut top inner edge.

Keep up the good work and looking forward to more update pics.

Cheers
Don



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #415, 07-04-2014 07:30 AM
      Thanks Don, I appreciate your input always. At some point in the future, we may have to fly you out to Nova Scotia and help us sort this all out.......

355Fiero MSG #416, 07-04-2014 06:19 PM
      Feed me Lobster and beer and I am there......

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #417, 07-05-2014 06:58 AM
      You're on Don. lobster tail and beer, our three favorite foods here in NS

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #418, 07-05-2014 03:42 PM
      Here are a couple pics of the rear suspension with a Wilwood Superlite caliper on 12.9" rotor.






Bloozberry MSG #419, 07-24-2014 06:52 AM
      Bumpity-bump.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #420, 07-24-2014 09:27 AM
      I know.... I know.

I have proceeded with removing the trunk sheet metal in preparation for moving the rear bumper assembly forward as per Blooz's build thread. Luckily all my sheet metal is still in good shape so there is very little fabrication of replacement parts required.







One of the issues we will have to address is whether we keep the plastic 5 mph honeycomb bumper as it will require us to move the rear steel bumper support that much further forward.







I guess the decision to either keep it and incorporate it into the 355 body or eliminate it altogether will depend on whether Nova Scotia laws require us to have it in place. The major benefit I see to eliminating it is that the steel bumper will not have to move so far forward thus retaining most of the OEM crumple zone.

I have added the rear bumper structure and most of the honeycomb structure to my 3D model however I will have to post images tonight from home as they are not on my work computer yet.

On a side note, I ordered my rear brake rotors and hats from Wilwood so once they arrive, I will post pictures of the equipment. I am still debating the caliper details so they have not been finalized yet.


Bloozberry MSG #421, 07-24-2014 12:13 PM
      Man, that car is clean! See you tomorrow evening.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #422, 07-24-2014 12:21 PM
      Clean ? After I took these pictures and downloaded them on my computer, my OCD got the best of me and I ran out to the garage to ArmorAll the frame...again, before taking the pictures over. Unfortunately I forgot to take the new pics off the camera. So I apologize for the way the chassis looks here.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #423, 07-30-2014 10:59 PM
      As noted by Blooz in his thread, the rear bodywork of our 355 body is going to clearly interfere with the stock location of the Fiero rear bumper structure. It then becomes a matter of deciding just how far forward to move the stock bumper and trying to minimizing the intrusion of the bumper into the trunk space while maximizing the use of as much of the stock bumper as possible. As Blooz had mentioned, moving the bumper structure forward 50mm or 2 inches seems to be a good compromise and allows for the stock chassis crumple zone to remaining mostly intact. The plastic 5 mph honeycomb bumper will likely have to be trimmed back prior to fitting the body but that is a minor sacrifice.

Here is a detailed drawing completed by Blooz and snatched shamelessly from his build thread. This shows a 50mm move forward of the rear bumper structure and how it will clear/ interact with the 355 body.



For my project, I will proceed to move the bumper structure forward 2 inches and secure it to newly fabricated flanges on the lower frame rails. As I plan to remove the stock strut towers, rework them and move them outboard atleast 3 inches per side as well as remove the majority of the trunk sheet metal, I need to get the rear bumper relocated and secured soon because it's pretty much the only thing holding the lower frame rails in position at this point in the build.



Here are a few pictures from my model showing the rear bumper in its new location





Bloozberry MSG #424, 08-03-2014 08:58 AM
      The graphics are amazing Graham. As we discussed when you were here, I think I'll be removing the thin webbing that holds the four parts of the honeycomb together and installing just the blocks. That webbing seems to contribute nothing except it was probably a convenient way for the production line to slap on the honeycomb in one step.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #425, 08-04-2014 04:57 PM
      I agree Blooz. I will proceed with moving the steel bumper forward 2 inches and get my lower frame rails secured prior to removing my strut towers. I had planned on making new strut towers but I think I will try to reuse the stock towers and try to retain that OEM look in the engine bay as much as possible.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-04-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #426, 08-05-2014 03:11 PM
      Yarmouth;

This back end is starting to scream longitudinal engine an trans. You have the extra 3" needed and engine man is showing us how to build an Audi V8 with an 012 trans into a Fiero......

Wouldn't it top off all the other great work you and Blooz are doing to open the enine lid and see the intake boxes going into a nice throttle body sitting longitudinally??.......

Keep up the great work guys.
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #427, 08-05-2014 10:45 PM
      Don.... that exact thought crosses my mind every time I look at that big open engine bay.. ha ha ha ha

355Fiero MSG #428, 08-06-2014 12:31 PM
      Well then that would be an easy answer for me..........

I will have an adaptor for a Chev V8 (not sure if it is SBC or LT) to a Porsche G50 soon when I swap in my BMW V12 into the Countach........ Expensive transmission though. (came with my project or I wouldn't be using it either.....)

You would be better off to go with a setup like engineman where you use a fully complete engine trans already built by Audi. I know Jim Dinner did a Haltech engine management conversion on a BMW V12 in his Diablo build so it might also work well on the Audi if engineman can't get his sorted out. I think he is pretty close though from reading his thread. You would want want a better engine/trans frame mated to the cradle though. I personally believe engineman will have problems with is 1x2 trans cross bar. Look up motoracer838's build here or on Madmechanics and see how he did his back end frame. You could easily adapt what he did to the Fiero frame as he did a great job on his cradle updates.

Motoracer's thread: http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum1/HTML/086876.html

Now is the time to do it though as you have everything cut away and ready to adjust the bumper so fit the engine/trans in and make sure everything fits..... (and this is why our projects take years..... upgrades and scope creep....haha)

Cheers
Don

[This message has been edited by 355Fiero (edited 08-06-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #429, 08-14-2014 08:43 PM
      Just got home from two weeks of vacation on the road and had a nice surprise waiting for me.........two rear brake rotors, hats and bolt kits for our project.
As described above, they are Wilwood 13" SRP rotors with aluminum hats. Here are a few pictures including a comparison with the stock 85 Fiero rotor and the rotor located behind the rear 18" wheel.









Bloozberry MSG #430, 08-14-2014 09:59 PM
      Oooooo... pretty. What calipers are you planning to use?

davylong86 MSG #431, 08-15-2014 11:47 AM
      Very nice! I don't think I ever saw black rotors before,but I like them.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #432, 08-15-2014 12:14 PM
      The black rotors are in keeping with the "all black and gold theme" for our build. I guess the rotor surface won't be black for long though davylong86.

The rear calipers will probably be the Wilwood 4 piston forged superlite as well as the Wilwood MC4 mechanical cailper for parking brake duty. I may order the MC4 just to see if there is going to be an issue with rattle as you had suggested Blooz.

Edit: The MC4 comes in black as well



[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 08-15-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #433, 08-15-2014 02:42 PM
      Taking advantage of the fast few days of my vacation, I thought I'd try to make some progress worthy of a thread update. Although it is kind of nice to post pics of new equipment once in a while.

As mentioned earlier, I plan to move my strut towers outward to allow the suspension to follow the 8" track width increase for this build. After removing most of the trunk sheet metal I realized the only thing holding the lower frame rails was the strut towers. At the same time, Blooz confirmed that out rear bumper was going to have to be moved atleast 2" forward to clear the 355 body we will be using. This seemed like a good time to move the bumper and secure the lower frame rails before any more chassis was chopped away.

So keeping with the planned 2" bumper move, I marked off the lower drivers side lower frame rail and proceeded to cut the required 2" of material off.







Originally, my plan was to make new flanges which would be welded to the shortened lower frame rail and allow me to secure the OEM bumper back in place. However, looking at what I had cut off and the fine condition of the OEM flanges, I decided to reuse them by removing the connecting sheet metal and separating them into two individual flanges. Not only were they in good shape, but they had dandy stiffeners already moulded into them which made them plenty stiff.



So I cleaned up the flanges and clamped them in place to see how they fit. I think they will be fine and once I have the passanger side done, I'll bolt them to the rear bumper to ensure they line up properly before welding them to the shortened lower frame rail.

Here is a pic of them clamped in place as well as a pic showing the difference in lower frame rail length with only the drivers side shortened so far.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #434, 08-15-2014 07:40 PM
      So here is the rear bumper in its new location with both lower frame rails shortened 2". Doesn't look like much I know ........ but it's a few hours work so I'll post it anyway ha-ha-ha.





Bloozberry MSG #435, 08-15-2014 09:39 PM
      Looks good... I'll be following suit very shortly.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #436, 09-01-2014 03:26 PM
      Every now and then, I seem to get a little bogged down in design details, trying to figure everything out to three decimal places, hesitating to buy components once I seem to find what I want that will fit my design.................. such has been the case for the rear suspension. As I mentioned, I plan to move the strut towers outward to compensate for the 8" track width increase of the 355 and the design has been going pretty good, albeit slow-w-w-w-w. I decided that the struts would move outward about 2 1/2" and the last 1 1/2" would be completed with a custom bracket to connect the rear spindles to the lower end of the struts. I decided on QA1 Front Pro Coil Strut System and specifically the 82 - 92 Camaro / Firebird Coil Over Single Adjustable Struts ( 18 position ). They have the length I need with the travel I require with lots of adjustablility for fine tuning static length and dynamic response. I also ordered the camber / caster adjustment plates for the top end. So they are on order from my favorite speed shop.

Continuning on with the design of the new strut towers that will suit the forthcoming coil over struts, it became apparent that the stock lower frame rails of the Fiero were now going to be significantly inboard of where they should actually be in relation to the new strut towers. So I've been crawling in and out of the chassis looking at this issue from every possible angle and I have decided to remove the stock lower frame rails, cutting them at the point of the original 3" chassis stretch. Rather than try to reuse the odd shaped stock rails, I have decided to fabricate new rails that will run straight back, parallel to each other. I will probably use 4" x 1 1/2" x 1/8" HSS and run them all the way back to the rear bumper, while incorporating a wider section in way of the engine cradle rear mounts. I had planned on designing and building a new engine cradle anyway that better suited the SBC installation so I may as well make it a little wider and give myself as much room in the engine bay as possible. As you will see below, the new lower frame rails should also eliminate the usual interference of the SBC with the lower frame rail on the passenger side.

Here are a few drawings showing the stock lower frame rails in blue, the revised lower frame rails in purple and a couple close ups showing the relationship of the SBC with the lower frame rail ( roughly).

Stock Lower Frame Rails


Modified Lower Frame Rails


SBC Interference


SBC Interference Corrected


And just when I think my plan is ready to carve in stone......... I get a suggestion from two different PFF members this week to consider going longitudinal. Back to the drawing board perhaps.


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #437, 09-01-2014 06:10 PM
      I saw your post in Blooz's thread. It's been discussed numerous times over at MM's. I don't think there is a transaxle option for a V8 that will fit in the 3" stretch longitudinally. Chrysler V6 is an option, but I don't think that is your direction. Obviously there have been several performance car options with the latitudinal engine. It's not necessarily the optimal, but obviously it can be done effectively.

Bob

[This message has been edited by RCR (edited 09-01-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #438, 09-02-2014 04:44 PM
      The SBC is one of the longer V8's. I had done some measuring a few years ago with measurements I obtained from an 016 Audi transaxle into a 3" stretch. The 016 could withstand the SBC torque with the reinforcing plate by Jim Dinner and no clutch drops from the green lights...... The Audi 016 is the shortest transaxle between the bell housing face and the axle centre. I have a Porsche G50 but it is a couple inches longer between the bell house and axles.

I have drawings with the Audi lengths and widths etc. somewhere that I can send you Graham. I figured the SBC length, then the Audi transaxle bell housing face to axle centre put the axle centres about 1.5"-2" behind the suspension hub centres. That put a small angle on the axles and CV joints but nothing that would cause issues over the long term.

You would need to add in a box to the firewall upper portion to clear some of the upper SBC parts and you would need to remove the lower frame box that covers the fuel pipe etc. Or cut some out of the middle portion of the lower box. This is required to clear the harmonic balancer. You also need to use a custom low profile accessories setup that puts the A/C, alt etc. lower to miss the angled Fiero firewall.

It is tight and I am sure I missed some important interference areas when I was eyeballing it but with your full 3D cad, you can draw a transaxle and mate it to the SBC you already have and see where the interference will really be. The beauty of CAD.....

There are other, (better in my opinion), options for a V8 than an SBC unless you already have one ready to go though.

Good luck with your decision and I will track those drawings down and send off to you in email.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #439, 09-02-2014 07:25 PM
      Thanks for the info Don. I got the drawings of the gearbox in my email. Very interesting option and one I will consider exploring. With regard to engine option, I don't have an engine yet but have been eyeing a nice Edelbrock Crate engine but its overall height as set up is a little concerning for the low deck of the 355 body.



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #440, 09-03-2014 07:04 AM
      How much clearance does the 355 deck have? I find it interesting because my 308 has enough room to put a 6-71 blower on my Aurora. OK, maybe not that much, but it is way above the original Fiero deck.



Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #441, 09-03-2014 07:09 AM
      Hi Bob, I just have a rough deck plane in my 3D model that I measured while visiting Blooz a while back. I didn't consider any structure on the underside of the deck but allowing say 2" for structure and a little air space above the engine and this set up might be pushing it. I am trying to get some measurements from Edelbrock but I haven't heard from them yet.

edit to add: on my drawing, allowing 2" for deck thickness and air space, I am showing 27" clearance to the lowest point of the engine cradle.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-03-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #442, 09-03-2014 08:34 AM
      Be careful Graham... The 308 is completely different than the 355 in that area. The top of the 355 deck lid is just about even with the bottom of the rear glass whereas the 308's is several inches above that.

Also keep in mind that the problem Don was having with his old 355 kit was that he couldn't get the car to sit low enough for the wheels to look right in the fenders without bottoming out on the suspension. The way I solved that problem was by raising the cradle (among other several other things), which also raises engine mounting points and reduces the under hood clearance.

For example, with my chopped cradle having 125mm ground clearance, and the oil pan being 10mm above that, and with the engine being 1325 663mm tall, I have 20 mm clearance under the deck lid. That means that if you're aiming for the same geometry as me, then your engine can be no taller than 1355 693mm, and even at that height, the oil pan will be flush with the bottom of the cradle and the topside will be touching the underside of the deck lid. As you know, you need some wiggle room for vibration and torque reaction. Any more than 1355 693mm and you're either hanging below the cradle or sticking up above the deck lid.

If you choose not to raise the cradle to give yourself more under hood clearance, then you'll either have to accept compromised suspension angles or larger wheel gaps at ride height as Don found. We can talk more about it when your here on Sat.

Edited to correct engine height numbers.

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 09-03-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #443, 09-03-2014 09:19 AM
      Thanks for the info Blooz. With regard to the engine cradle, I will be building a completely new one to suit the wider frame rails and whatever engine I decide on. I can certainly raise it and looking at my suspension geometry using the stock cradle, I would have serious problems if I didn't raise the cradle.

Your measurements of 1355mm have me a little confused. I'll have to check my drawing again because I don't seem to have anywhere near that. I'll post a drawing shortly.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #444, 09-03-2014 09:28 AM
      Here is a side view showing the rough deck height that we had measured from your 355 body. I am showing 33.3" or approx. 845mm. Your 1355mm measurement has me concerned.

Sorry for the low resolution of the drawing.




Bloozberry MSG #445, 09-03-2014 09:35 AM
      Ooops! Used the wrong scale... recalculating...

Bloozberry MSG #446, 09-03-2014 09:46 AM
      There. I fuxed it. (I had used a damned cut and paste scale on my engine drawing without checking to make sure it was correct)

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #447, 09-03-2014 10:15 AM
      So-o-o-o-o-o my measurement is somewhat accurate? Good thing I accidently doubled up on my blood pressure meds this morning.

355Fiero MSG #448, 09-03-2014 01:25 PM
      Guys;

The top of the engine deck lid sits 1" above the top of the Fiero firewall at the front. I had a 1x2" square bar that was used as my bracing for the convertible top. The deck lid is about 1" thick with very little under it so if you use 1.25" thickness you will be about.25" under the Fiero firewall top for the bottom of the engine lid. the back of the engine bay, the engine lid is about .5" above the edge of the front trunk wall.

the engine lid also has a section in the centre that raises about 1"+ where the intake would be.

Using these measurements, you should be able to get a pretty close approximation of where the lid goes in relation to the engine setup.

Good luck
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #449, 09-03-2014 01:52 PM
      Thanks Don. When we sat the body and deck on our chassis I don't recall if everything was sitting exactly down tight or not. I know on my car, it wasn't completely correct because the roll over hoops were in the way of the rear clip sliding all the way forward. I suspect it was all pretty loose. Also, I think my measurement may have been the highest point on deck which was that little bubble / intake area. I am sure before I get to purchase an engine, I'll have test fitted the body back on my chassis again for a second look at clearance issues.

Thanks for sharing your keen memory with us.



edit: to add a pretty picture

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-03-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #450, 09-07-2014 12:37 PM
      I am proceeding ahead with the planned modifications to remove the lower frame rails, strut towers and all the other miscellaneous sheet metal. The lower frame rails were in pretty good condition and may even show up in another project at some point. The strut towers are a bugger to remove with all their overlapper layers of sheet metal and still keeping the upper frame rails intact. It took me all morning to remove the passenger side strut tower. As I mentioned earlier, I am going to fabricate new lower frame rails from 4" x 2" x 1/8" HSS and it just so happened that when I did the original 3" chassis stretch, the inserts I fabricated for the lower frame rails were sized to fit inside 4" x 2" x 1/8" HSS so its going to be a nice strong fit to slide the new rails over my original extension stubs.

Here are a few images of the proposed new frame rails.





Considering that the upper rails are in great shape, the lower rails are more robust and straight and only slightly off center from the upper rails and the rocker frames I added to the chassis tie both rails together and end close to where the new strut towers are going to be, I am hopeful that with a strong strut tower design I can possibly eliminate the transverse frame between the strut towers that the stock chassis had ( forward side of the trunk). Also keep in mind that I am moving the struts outward and as close as possible to the upper frame rails so their leverage on the chassis is reduced. That would certainly open up my engine bay for my SBC installation.

Here are a couple pictures with the passenger side stut tower removed and the lower frame rail mocked up in position. This engine bay is going to be cavernous.







As you can see, I'll probably replace the stock engine cradle with a custom cradle more suited to the SBC installation. Too bad because the cradle is in mint condition except for the 3" stretch.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #451, 09-07-2014 07:04 PM
      Well, after a long day of drilling, cutting and grinding, the driverside strut tower is off.



Interesting, the trunk well, once removed from the chassis is just large enough to hold all the parts and scrap metal I cut out of the engine bay. Is it possible the engineers at GM planned it this way knowing one day, some owners would get the urge to butcher their cars and require a collection bin for the discarded parts?



Bloozberry MSG #452, 09-07-2014 08:11 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
The lower frame rails were in pretty good condition and may even show up in another project at some point.


You crack me up... your lower frame rails have already shown up in another project! Mine!

 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Interesting, the trunk well, once removed from the chassis is just large enough to hold all the parts and scrap metal I cut out of the engine bay.


LOL! I'm using mine for exactly the same thing. Great minds think alike.



fierogt28 MSG #453, 09-07-2014 08:47 PM
      Hi Yarmouth,

Those pics are nice for the average fiero owner who always wanted to see
the frame from an angle we never see. Thanks for posting...

BTW, in the photo posted, isn't that silver plate the same kind used for the floor
pan plugs??

Seems farmilar...

Cheers...



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #454, 09-07-2014 09:12 PM
      Blooz, once I dump the scrap out of the trunk well, I'm going to save it for use as a large ice bucket to keep the beer cool in the garage when company comes over.

Fierogt28, yes, those silver covers seem to pop up in a few places on the Fiero. Its pretty inetesting to slowly dissect a Fiero piece by piece. Its certainly gives you an appreciation for the engineering that went into the many little pieces that make up the space frame. It would be cool to completely dismantle a fiero chassis and lay the pieces out on a large floor. I wonder if GM had ever done it for a publicity photo?


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #455, 09-14-2014 08:59 AM
      I have completed the task of removing the old strut towers, lower frame rails and cleaning up what used to be the engine bay. I have all the material in to fabricate the new lower frame rails and have begun building the new rails as per my new design. I have also refined the design a bit to locate the wide portion of the rail that will intersect with the rear end of the future new engine cradle. I have also added a transverse frame of 3" x 1" x 1/8" HSS which will be located just forward of the stock bumper. The purpose for this extra transverse frame is to tie the two lower rails together at their farthest end rather than rely on just the bolt on bumper, especially during fabrication. I want everything to remain as square to the chassis as possible. Also, as I had mentioned earlier, I am hoping to completely do away with the transverse frame that originally ran between the stock strut towers. This will open the engine bay considerably.





I have also begun working on the design for the new strut towers. It's all just preliminary until my QA1 Coilovers arrive. I also purchased the QA1 Camber/ Caster strut bearing and that will have to be accommodated into the new strut tower design. Unfortunately, QA1 doesn't supply detailed drawings of the parts ahead of time so I'll have to wait until they arrive.

As I mentioned, I am hoping to make the new strut tower design robust enough to elliminate the transverse strut frame. To do this, it is necessary to ensure that there is adequate load distribution from the strut towers to both the upper and lower frame rails. This includes two gussets per tower as well as boxing in the entire length between the upper and lower frame rails from fire wall to rear bumper. With the widened track of the rear wheels, there is plenty of room to enclose this space thus maximizing my engine bay space. Some of this will eventually be opened up to allow air into the engine and engine bay from the 355 side scoops. There may even be room for a couple small radiators similar to what Blooz has planned.

Here are a few pictures showing the design from different angles. I will probably end up lowering the top of the strut towers, especially on the top outside edges to accommodate the 355 body. I have also included a couple pics showing the stock strut towers as ghosted images to emphasize the difference in size and location between stock and revised. Note that with the wider track, there is room to expand the sides of the engine bay outwards. In the images showing the SBC, you can see the new design will get me some much needed space in the engine bay.















Bloozberry MSG #456, 09-14-2014 10:15 AM
      Wow... if there isn't enough room lengthwise for a longitudinal V8, then you should consider a transverse V10 given the room between the rails! (Nice drawings BTW)

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #457, 09-14-2014 10:30 AM
      I have been racking my brain trying solve the longitudinal V8 issue. Do you think its too late for us to do a second 3" stretch? I always felt the 355 was a few inches too short.

Bloozberry MSG #458, 09-14-2014 10:42 AM
      Not too late for you, but it is for me! Here's some inspiration for you if you go ahead:



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #459, 09-14-2014 11:12 AM
      You're going through all that trouble moving things around, why bother keeping the struts?

Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #460, 09-14-2014 11:23 AM
      Tandem axle Blooz? That is crazy talk. I was thinking something more along these lines.....,



Bob, are you refering to eliminating the struts and doing a set up like Blooz and others? I think that is beyond my skills and I think the 85 set up will give me all the suspension performance I'll ever need. But I certainly have considered the idea a few times.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-14-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #461, 09-14-2014 02:28 PM
      Any way you look at it, this has become a cavernous engine bay.



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #462, 09-14-2014 05:56 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Bob, are you refering to eliminating the struts and doing a set up like Blooz and others? I think that is beyond my skills and I think the 85 set up will give me all the suspension performance I'll ever need. But I certainly have considered the idea a few times.



Yep, either Blooze's setup or maybe stock components like Bubbajoexxx: http://www.fiero.nl/forum/F.../HTML/000007-24.html

Bob


fieroguru MSG #463, 09-14-2014 07:52 PM
      How tall are you Yarmouth? If you are 5'-10" or shorter, just bubble out the firewall into the passenger area some.

Have you looked at the Audi A8 longitudinal V8 engine man is doing in a stock wheel base fiero. It would fit just fine with a 3" stretch.
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum2/HTML/123266.html


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #464, 09-14-2014 08:30 PM
      I'm 5' 6" at 7am and 5' 5" by 5pm

I have been following engineman and his Audi install. Its an impressive build for sure. I'm looking hard at possible gearboxes that will allow me to tuck a V8 in behind the fire wall for a longitudinal installation. Surely it's possible with only a 3" chassis stretch.

edit to add: Thanks for the link Bob. I don't know if I have ever read through that entire build.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-14-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #465, 09-17-2014 07:30 PM
      Finally, my QA1 rear coilover struts arrived together with my QA1 camber/caster plates. Now I can get to work finalizing the new strut tower design and building the structure for my chassis.

The struts are QA1 Pro Coil Strut System (PN HS606S-12325) with 325 lb springs
The Caster / Camber Plates are PN CPK106






Bloozberry MSG #466, 09-17-2014 08:04 PM
      Oooo... nice. Those camber/caster plates should make adjustments far easier than loosening the strut to knuckle bolts.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #467, 09-17-2014 08:33 PM
      I agree. I just need to figure out how they fasten to the strut tower. The instructions only reference how to replace the old plates with the new ones....... not how to design the strut tower to accept them.

355Fiero MSG #468, 09-18-2014 03:13 PM
      Graham;

I would suggest that you decide which engine/trans orientation you are going to go with before making up the strut tower configuration. You might end up with slightly different configuration depending on lateral vs. longitudinal orientation.

Have you had time to take the 016 Audi box measurements and attach them to the SBC (1" adapter plate) and see where interference issues may end up with the Firewall and cradle? Lateral orientation you can set the upper strut tower hollows in place to clear the various SBC items but longitudinal you might need to lay with the lower strut tower area to clear exhaust headers etc.

As always, keep up the great work. I am enjoying watching you and Blooz progress.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #469, 09-18-2014 03:49 PM
      Hi Don. I am in the process of drawing the transmission in 3d but not quite finished. I think if I do go longitudinal I should have lots of room for headers. I will start drawing the strut parts tonight so I have an accurate drawing of the suspension to go by.

This is my first post from my Blackberry so I apologize if it looks odd.


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #470, 09-19-2014 07:06 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Hi Don. I am in the process of drawing the transmission in 3d but not quite finished. I think if I do go longitudinal I should have lots of room for headers. I will start drawing the strut parts tonight so I have an accurate drawing of the suspension to go by.

This is my first post from my Blackberry so I apologize if it looks odd.


Post looks fine, just odd someone still has a Blackberry. :P

Bob


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #471, 09-19-2014 08:06 AM
      It's a Canadian thing to do Bob

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #472, 09-25-2014 09:28 PM
      With the arrival of the QA1 rear coilover struts, I've proceeded to add them to my 3D model to confirm the geometry will work as expected.

Here are a few pictures of the strut in location on the spindle. In these drawings the strut is at full extension. With the 325 lb springs, I expect the struts to compress about 2 1/2" atleast. That should make them the perfect length for this installation. I've also added a few pictures showing the new strut location in relation to the stock strut tower. As shown, the strut has been moved outward 4" to match the new rear track width of the 355. However, it is quite close to the inner edge of the upper frame rail so I may either notch the frame rail or use an offset spacer on the spindle to locate the strut inward about 1 1/2" to give lots of clearance.









355Fiero MSG #473, 09-26-2014 04:50 PM
      Graham;

You have already probably done this but I would set the ride height you want first in the model and then set up the tower to best position the strut for middle of the shaft in loaded rest.

I ended up with pretty short compression strut travel on mine when I was trying to pull the frame/body down to sit properly over the wheels. My mistake was not looking at ride height first and as a result was going to to need to redo some of the wheel arches and/or frame mounting points to get some ride height back and still have the panels far enough down to not look like a 4x4....... I find all replica 355 panels are like that so start with ride height and work your way up from there.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #474, 09-26-2014 05:39 PM
      Thanks Don. I have my actual car chassis set at the same ride height as Blooze and my model is drawn the same. I can easily compress the spring in my 3D model to the height I need to suit the final ride height. I"ll add those drawings tonight.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #475, 09-27-2014 03:39 PM
      I have been working on my new strut tower design to incorporate the QA1 coilover struts I purchased. As I had mentioned, I considered moving the strut outward a portion of the 4" needed per side and using an offset bracket between the lower end of the strut and the spindle to make up the remaining distance. By doing this, I could lower the end of the strut downward with the bracket in an effort to gain a little more travel in the strut. Well, I suspected the lower end of the new strut would be close to the drive shaft so I added the CV boot to my drawing just to see how close. Ouch. They are going to be within 1/8" of each other.



I was currious why so I dug out the stock strut from under the workbench and compared it to the new QA1 strut. Its quite clear to me now. The adjustment section on the lower end of the QA1 strut makes it quite a bit longer. Because of this, my relocation bracket for my strut/ spindle connection may have to incorporate some lift to the strut......... just the opposite to what I wanted. Here are a couple pictures of the two struts side by side.





Back to the drawing board.


Bloozberry MSG #476, 09-27-2014 05:41 PM
      Well that sucks.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #477, 09-27-2014 10:02 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

Well that sucks.


Thanks for the input Blooz. Is this your professional opinion of my situation?

I've been scouring your thread tonight re-reading all your rear suspension details and there is a nice rear view drawing on page 16 about 2/3 down the page that does show that the shaft angle should move down and away from the strut, atleast in jounce. It may be an issue during rebound though. The more I read, the more I realize that the position and angle of my strut as well as the length and angle of the control arm is going to critical so that this arrangement doesn't bind or exceed the limits of the ball joint and upper strut bearing. I'll have to make sure this design works before I start cutting steel and fabricating.

Looking more closely at the the stock strut, it appears from the lower two mounting bolt holes are on an axis about 5 degrees off the strut body axis where as my QA1 struts have the holes on the same axis as the strut body. I may be able to incorporate this extra 5 degrees in my strut/ spindle adapter bracket as it helps move the bottom of the strut a little further away from the CV boot.





Edit: to add drawings

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-27-2014).]

fieroguru MSG #478, 09-27-2014 10:39 PM
      You might look into a different style CV boot.

There are some where the largest part (OD) is where it clamps to the CV housing vs. it being 3/4" or larger than the clamp OD due to the V shaped accordion grooves. Past the CV housing, its just the axle shaft, so the boot can be much smaller, which will give you more clearance.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #479, 09-27-2014 10:41 PM
      I compressed the spring in my drawing based on the calculation that my 12" long 325lb spring should compress approximately 2 1/2" which leaves me with a static length of 9 1/2" with 3 1/2" of compression travel remaining. I still have room on the threaded strut tube to fine tune my ride height when I am done.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #480, 09-27-2014 10:45 PM
      Thanks for the suggestion Fieroguru. I didn't think of that but it is certainly a simple solution to that part of my problem. Since I will probably have to get custom shafts made anyway, it might be easy to arrange for the suggested boots to be installed.

fieroguru MSG #481, 09-28-2014 08:34 AM
      Another option would be switching to the 88 rear uprights (you need to mod the cradle anyway). I think they place the mounting of the strut 1/4" or higher than the 84-87's which might be enough and they angle the struts in further which might gain you the needed frame rail clearance as well. I am sure between Blooze and your drawings, you can confirm how much of a difference there is between the two.

The reason I think there is a difference is I ran the same wheels/tires on an 86 and 88 and the 88 had slightly more vertical clearance between the lower spring perch on the strut and the tire. However, if you are running 17" wheels, there isn't enough clearance (shy about 1/4") for a 17" wheel to pass over the strut mounting tabs on the strut when attached to the 88 rear upright.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #482, 09-28-2014 09:56 AM
      Thanks again Fieroguru. I had considered going completely with 88 suspension but never took the idea too far. In the back, I am running 18" wheels.

I added the camber plate to my drawing and I think I am getting close. I may have to still drop the spring a little more and sacrifice my strut travel if I can't lower the entire strut relative to the spindle. I will probably have to shorten the threaded end of the strut rod too as its going to be very close to the 355 rear deck height.

Here is a picture showing the strut and camber plate position in relation to the stock strut tower.



Here are a couple pictures showing the top of the strut in relation to the proposed 355 Rear deck. I clearly have a little more fine tuning to get it all to fit just right. There is also the matter of the 355 rear quarters having a bulge on top that actually forms the base for the coupe body work . On the 355 spider, it will form a well for the soft top to be stored so I may have to liberate some of that space for my strut camber plate. See the last photo.









Edit: to add last picture for reference

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-28-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #483, 09-29-2014 03:33 PM
      Graham;

Remember that you will be adding in a 1" or so adaptor to the join between the strut and the hub to get the 4" width increase where your strut only went out 3" tops. This will push the strut lower end inward by that 1" which then gives you more room between the axle boot and the bottom of the strut. You can then even possibly lower the strut down maybe a 1/2" or so to get a bit more travel and still clear the boot. If you add the spacer in on your drawing, you should be able to see the interference possibilities with the new location.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #484, 09-29-2014 03:56 PM
      Thanks Don. That was my plan to use the spacer at the spindle although now that I have the strut drawn exactly as I purchased, my 3D model is showing me enough clearance between the strut and the upper frame rail. I think because of the offset on my wheels, perhaps the suspension will only move outward 3 1/2" even though my track increase is 4". Does this make sense?

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-29-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #485, 09-29-2014 06:31 PM
      Yes it does Graham;

It will be interesting to see how everything actually comes together on the car. You will be very close on your upper strut placement to have the clearance under the rear clip as well. That strut really is quite a bit longer on the top that the oem?

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #486, 09-29-2014 06:38 PM
      I am planning to stop by and see Blooz on Wednesday to get some measurements of the rear clip. I may even bring his original rear clip home to use while mocking up my rear suspension. I can see that getting at the camber plate is going to be a nightmare once the body work is fitted for good.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #487, 09-29-2014 08:43 PM
      Here are a few pictures of the driverside rear wheel mocked up at the desired track width with the strut in place. Its going to be very close to the desired strut height once the spring is compressed another 2 1/2". Once I have added the rear quarter body work measurements, I'll have a better idea if the camber plate is going to fit under the body work.







Bloozberry MSG #488, 09-29-2014 10:07 PM
      You can mock up your system more easily by removing the springs altogether.

How much space do you have between the top of the tire and the underside of the upper frame rail? I had to notch my upper rail to get the travel I wanted.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #489, 09-29-2014 10:49 PM
      I am planning on replacing the springs with the 9 1/2" of 3" dia plastic pipe for mocking up the suspension any further Blooz.

With regard to notching the upper frame rail, I will be doing the same notch as you since our wheel / tire set up is almost identical. There is not enough room at the moment once you factor in the sweep of the suspension and final camber settings. I was going to wait until after I build the new strut towers before notching because at the moment, there is not much holding the rear frames together.





I may run my notch all the way through to the inside edge of the upper frame rail just to ensure I have clearance for the strut when things start bouncing around.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-29-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #490, 09-30-2014 07:54 AM
      Now you're truly neck-deep into the nitty-gritty... the heavy duty stuff that only real custom fabricators attempt and pull off. How does it feel to be sailing uncharted waters?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #491, 09-30-2014 08:01 AM
      You're asking a former marine engineer and now shipbuilder what its like in uncharted waters? I don't know anything else but uncharted waters

To be honest, I'll be glad when the design work is done and I can start putting metal back on the chassis. The scrap pile is almost as big as the chassis itself now.

My other shop this morning.



It will eventually be another one of these.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 09-30-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #492, 09-30-2014 09:26 AM
      What is that back there? Theodore Tug?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #493, 09-30-2014 09:39 AM
      It's this.....



Not this.......





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #494, 10-03-2014 09:03 PM
      I decided to take an evening away from the rear suspension and bolt my brake rotors together. I purchased the bolt kit from Wilwood which are 1/4 - 28 and they recommend a torque of 85 in-lbs with lubrication. The bolts are 316 stainless steel and the rotor hats are aluminum so I decided to use Tef Gel which is a product we use alot of in the shipbuilding world when using stainless steel fasteners on aluminum vessels. It's a lubricant, anti galling/ antiseize compound that also reduces corrosion between dissimilar metals.





I torqued in two stages using a diagonal pattern and then proceeded to lock the bolts together as recommended by Wilwood. They recommend using 0.032" stainless steel locking wire which I happen to have on hand.



I stopped by to visit Blooz this week and he loaned me a proper set of wire twisting pliers and they worked amazing to produce a nice tight even twist. I definitely have to invest in a pair of these.



When it was all done, it turned out pretty good and it certainly adds a sophisticated look to the brake rotors. Shame it will all be facing inside where it can't be seen.



Bloozberry MSG #495, 10-03-2014 09:17 PM
      Nice job on the lock wire. Those rotors are going to be stunning peeking through your wheel spokes.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #496, 10-03-2014 09:37 PM
      Thanks Blooz. And thanks for the use of the pliers. They are very easy to use. There is a new Snap-On truck that comes to the yard once a week. I may have to start a shopping list of odd yet interesting tools to add to my shop.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #497, 10-08-2014 09:10 PM
      Still thinking a longitudinal SBC with Porsche / Audi gearbox installation and throwing ideas on the screen. Here is a belt drive using 62mm wide Gates Poly Chain GT Carbon belts rated at 325 hp at 5500 rpm. Gates has an amazing belt drive design program that allows you to enter a wide variety of design constraints and it offers suggestions for parts from their extensive catalogue.

Thoughts and comments please.



Boogaloo MSG #498, 10-08-2014 11:34 PM
      What kind if belt or chain do you intend to use for the wheels?.

Bloozberry MSG #499, 10-09-2014 07:03 AM
      It's an interesting concept, but I don't think it will work.

In order to keep tension on the belt, you'd need to solidly mount the belt gears to the chassis through bearing blocks as you've sort of shown. But that would leave a rigid stub shaft from the gear to the inboard half of the outer CV joint. By doing so, the outboard half of the outer CV joint (attached to the wheel) would be rendered a single, straight pivot point. It can't work that way since the axle shaft has to change not only in angle and length, but in height too.

To make the design work, you'd need to move the two CV joints onto a single shaft connected to the wheel and have the drive belt connected directly to the transmission output at one end, and the inboard half of the inner CV joint at the other end. Does that make sense?


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #500, 10-09-2014 07:16 AM
      It makes perfect sense Blooz. What I am looking at is having the stubs fitted with a tri-pot on the gearbox end and the driven gear end with a CV joint at the wheel. This should allow the engine/ gear to rock on soft mounts and the output shaft to act as the usual drive shaft. Its going to be short so I still have to look at the range of motion. Also, as you can see I don't have a real gearbox drawn so it may be narrower than I have it, allowing for longer shafts. At this point, its just a conceptual drawing so I can run it through the first iteration and see if I can transmit that much power at max rpm. There are many things to consider and refine for sure.

Here is the suggested belt for that hp and rpm. The version I am looking at is 62mm wide.



Edit: for additional info.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-09-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #501, 10-09-2014 07:51 AM
      Having read your comment again Blooz, perhaps having the drive belt assembly fastened to the engine/ gear mounts and let it all move as one unit and then have a traditional drive shaft with CV and tripot as the output shaft to the wheels. It would eliminate the input shaft completely and get the whole assembly tucked up close to the gearbox. I found a nice 3D model of an Audi gearbox but the drawing is a little too expensive for a "what if" design exercise.

Bloozberry MSG #502, 10-09-2014 12:51 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Having read your comment again Blooz, perhaps having the drive belt assembly fastened to the engine/ gear mounts and let it all move as one unit and then have a traditional drive shaft with CV and tripot as the output shaft to the wheels.


Yes... that's what I tried to explain in my post above. The other thing you'd need to find is a transmission where the output shafts were far back enough to give you the forward room to add the two gears and belt system and still have the axle fall where you want it.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #503, 10-09-2014 12:59 PM
      Yes, I agree, there are a number of different gearbox models to choose from. I based my basic drawing on the Audi 016 that Don had sent me. From there it was close to 12" between sheaves and the first iteration gave me 4 1/4" dia sheaves and a 62mm wide belt. It seemed like a good place to start and it was very close to what I needed.

Edit to add. I do have the flexibility to move the engine fwd or aft a little so suit the belt length / location. The first iteration gave me three possible belt/ sheave combinations to handle the load.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-09-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #504, 10-09-2014 01:09 PM
      Graham;

I am surprised that the assembly is so far back? I don't doubt your measuring and placement, it was just a surprise that it was back that far. Is there a way to move the engine froward so that the crank harmonic balancer is up against the firewall area and cut into the firewall? Perhaps, if you are set on an SBC (they are quite large), then staying lateral would be a lot less work and more reliable in the long run..... I just think of the Audi V8 engine man is doing and his setup looks like with the 3" stretch, it would be almost perfect placement.

Interesting design thoughts though. I am looking forward to seeing what you end up in the end.

Cheers
Don

Edit: Also as Blooz said, solid mounting the belt drives to the engine/trans setup or to the frame and then having CV joints on both ends of a longer axle shaft would also be a better arrangement in my opinion.

[This message has been edited by 355Fiero (edited 10-09-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #505, 10-09-2014 01:51 PM
      Hi Don, thanks for the input. The engine is back quite a distance for sure. I am not sure if the engine intake can be swapped around although I suspect it can, but just in case, I left room for intake ducting. The belts do come in shorter lengths, infact almost half as short as I have shown. Last night when I was doing this drawing, I just sort of picked a belt and drew it. I'll refine the whole arrangement tonight and post an update as per the suggestions today.

fieroguru MSG #506, 10-09-2014 04:51 PM
      The use of belts to get the drive back to the axles has been done before... I just can't find the picture. The pulleys came off a RWD rear end that was shortened to be just a pumpkin. I am sure it was in a replica of some kind.

Here are some other fun pictures to get the creative juices flowing:







Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #507, 10-09-2014 07:59 PM
      Thanks for the pics Fieroguru. That is certainly an interesting gearbox arrangement. I have seen a belt drive before too but I can't for the life of me find it online. I seem to recall it was a dragster.

I double checked my gearbox dimensions and they are pretty close to the Audi 016. As I mentioned, I can move the engine forward a little more to get it tucked behind the firewall. I just need to find a different style intake. I changed the shafts so that the belt drive is tucked in close to the engine/ gearbox. This will facilitate mounting it all together in some fashion. I then stretched out the drive shafts to make them more functional.





Bloozberry MSG #508, 10-09-2014 09:35 PM
      That's more like it. I'll be curious to see how you design the cradle... lots to consider!

Edit to add: Looks like you'll need a remote filter kit!

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 10-09-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #509, 10-10-2014 07:21 AM
      You have a keen eye Grasshopper. I'll probably just get a filter notching kit.

With regard to cradle design, I may end up with a cradle within a cradle. I am going to do more research on SBC intakes and see what is available for reversing the intake. I saw another build that has an intake that sweeps around the distributor. If I can move the engine forward another 4" then I can get down to a 8" center to center belt/ sheave arrangement which I think would be easier to design around. That will save me the cost of the filter notching kit.

TGIF


fieroguru MSG #510, 10-10-2014 07:47 AM
      What intake were you planning to use? The LT1 has been flipped numerous times and just requires building up the seal flange on the ends, but you will have to run distributor less.

I flipped the upper plenum on a modified Holley Stealth Ram intake (see Trintens SBC/F23 build in the construction zone)... lots of work, but works.

Archie also flipped the upper plenum on a TPI intake and extended the TB mounting point to clear a crab dist.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #511, 10-10-2014 08:35 AM
      I am thinking something like the Edelbrock SBC as posted back on the top of page 12. But nothing is carved in stone at this time.

seajai MSG #512, 10-10-2014 05:36 PM
      Check this out: http://www.volksrods.com/fo...wthread.php?p=465625 Very similar to what you are thinking.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #513, 10-10-2014 08:33 PM
      Interseting find seajai, thanks. There are bits and pieces out there in various articles but I can't find any definitive article that gives details regarding the success or failure of the arrangement. I'll keep working at the desgn and refine the details. I am hopeful at this stage.

I did find some interesting information regarding the ability to reverse the intake manifold on a V8. Its seems the LS1 engine is suitable for the modification.

Edit: to add this photo. A jet boat with the intake manifold reversed.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-10-2014).]

seajai MSG #514, 10-10-2014 09:39 PM
      It would be interesting to see how much horsepower it would rob to run a belt drive setup like that. Also, I would think the belts would heat up quite a bit pushing a 3000lb car on a long cruise. Maybe a custom case running a transfer chain from a FWD transaxle or even a chain from a 4wd transfer case. It would make for a narrower assembly than a wide belt.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #515, 10-10-2014 10:02 PM
      The belts are good for 185 deg F which is pretty hot. I've seen some pretty large belt drive HVAC units and the belts rarely got warm. As far as efficiency, the toothed belts typically achieve operating efficiencies around 98%. As well, the belts are self lubricating unlike chain drives.

I have moved the engine as far forward as possible to suit the shortest belt quoted by the design program at 8.66" center to center. Definitely going to have to reverse the intake manifold.



[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-10-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #516, 10-10-2014 10:33 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Definitely going to have to reverse the intake manifold.


...or you could run a snorkel into the cabin... sort of like an auxiliary cabin air refresher.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #517, 10-10-2014 10:39 PM
      I could hide it behind a big ol' speaker grill

steve308 MSG #518, 10-11-2014 09:00 AM
      Belt type drive was done in the 70's in a concept kit car called the ZARA ----- There is information out there somewhere on why it didn't work but I'm sure belt technology has improved (Kevlar and steel belting) so it may work today.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #519, 10-11-2014 09:23 AM
      This transmission sounds interesting and the wavetrac differential might help keep the belt loads somewhat balanced. Anyone have experience or an opinion on this setup with regards to my proposed belt drive arrangement?

Taken from the Advanced Automotion website.

01E FWD wide ratio transmission with Wavetrac Differential

This is Audi's version of the 01E front wheel drive transmission. Similar in construction to the quattro transmission but is about 12 inches shorter and 25 pounds lighter. Great for a mid/rear engine kit car, or replacement. Also used in FWD 6 speed conversions like the BHW Passat B5.5.

The mainshaft, first, and second gears are cryo tempered and stress releived. Optional WPC surface treatments are available.

Common Ratios are: 1st 3.50 2nd 1.89 3rd 1.23 4th .87 or .93 5th .68 or .73 6th .56 or .60

Included with this transmission is a wavetrac differential installed and ready to run. The Wavetrac is a patented differential that combines the street manners of a torque biasing differential with the zero traction behavior of a limited slip.

All remanufactured transmission go through quality control program and are fully dyno tested on our custom transmission dynomometer, yielding the most efficient, coolest running, and longest lasting gearbox at the best price available.

Units come with 12 month unlimited mileage limited warranty. Shipping is via truck freight LTL. Freight restrictions prevent us from shipping gearboxes with fluid. Options below are priced only with the transmission.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 10-11-2014).]

Bridgetown MSG #520, 10-11-2014 12:39 PM
      Some longitudinal transmission discussion here:
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum1/HTML/087996.html


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #521, 10-11-2014 01:27 PM
      Thanks for the link Bridgetown. This is an interesting picture posted by Motoracer838. Mount the driver pulley's right on the gearbox output flanges with no bearings. Might be alot of side load on the gearbox shafts though.



fieroguru MSG #522, 10-11-2014 03:36 PM
      Every LS(x) swap in a Fiero that I have seen has had the intake flipped 180 (except the LS4s - they came from the factory with the TB over the bellhousing area).

The overall length of an LS(x) engine is shorter than the SBC, and the LS4's are quite economical. You might also want to consider using this Audi Transmission as it places the axle centerline very close to the bellhousing area of the engine.

[This message has been edited by fieroguru (edited 10-11-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #523, 10-11-2014 03:53 PM
      Thanks Fieroguru. I have been trying to educate myself on the differences in chevy engines as I has always though SBC but there are many more models that may be more suitable. What Audi transmission model is that?

fieroguru MSG #524, 10-11-2014 07:11 PM
      2009+ A4/A5 2.0 Tdi 6 speed manual

Ratios:
Final: 3.693
1st: 3.778
2nd: 2.050
3rd: 1.321
4th: 0.970
5th: 0.757
6th: 0.625

Here is a picture from the front side:


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #525, 10-11-2014 07:19 PM
      Interesting indeed. I assume that's the differential jutting forward on the passenger side? Would there we an issue with the chevy bell housing? I'll have to do a search and see what the power / torque limits are. Thanks for the details Fieroguru.

355Fiero MSG #526, 10-12-2014 01:35 AM
      Graham;

I had looked in to this transmission a while ago as well. It looks like a good option but from what I saw, not very easily obtainable. Not sure about the torque capabilities either but it is similar to the old 016 transmissions which can handle a V8 torque when taken care of. The 012 Audis are weaker though. g86 Porsche transmissions are better for this V8 application than an 012. The 016 trans has the shortest distance between bell housing surface and axle centers. Aside from this trans of course. Any trans setup you hook up to an SBC you will need an adapter and a custom flywheel. A fellow over on madmechanics can make an adapter and flywheel for you.

My opinion, and my opinion only, would be to either look at maybe an Audi V8 or look back at a transverse setup like Booz. All your project though so looking forward to seeing what you will end up doing.

Cheers
Don

[This message has been edited by 355Fiero (edited 10-12-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #527, 10-12-2014 08:43 AM
      Thanks Don. Looking up that transmission online seems to indicate its was mated with a 190 hp motor. It might not be adequate for my intended setup. Perhaps if I could use two of them ha-ha-ha.

I am still thinking some kind of Chevy V8 and look forward to the challenge of trying something new. I still think the belt drive has merit and it is just a matter of working out the details. I am lucky that my job affords me the opportunity to work on unique projects and I have alot of resources at my finger tips and consider the belt drive system a challenge. My intensions are to try and use off the shelf components whenever possible but If I see that I am facing a brick wall, I always have the traditional transverse arrangement to fall back on.

Please keep the ideas and suggestions coming. The more brains working on this the better.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #528, 10-12-2014 10:57 AM
      Further refined the design by removing the pillow block bearings on the gearbox output shafts. As well, I should be able to mount the fwd bearings by including the supports as extensions on the bellhousing adapter plate that I'll certainly need to have machined. This will allow the arrangement to be installed and tensioned on the engine/ greabox prior to installation of the assembly into the car. The design at this stage is just conceptual at this stage.





fieroguru MSG #529, 10-12-2014 05:15 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Looking up that transmission online seems to indicate its was mated with a 190 hp motor. It might not be adequate for my intended setup.


Torque is what kills transmissions, not HP. Since that application is a diesel, its hp will be lower, but should have a higher torque rating. The engine it was behind was rated at 280 lb-ft, and the G6 F40 is only rated at 295 lb-ft... so it really boils down to who do you think builds their FWD transmissions with the higher safety margin? GM or Audi/VW?

BTW, the LS4 is 23 3/16" from the bellhousing to the forward edge of the harmonic balancer/pulley. The length of the block is 20 3/4" and the leading edge of the #1 bank is flush with the face of the block. The top of the intake is 17 1/2" above the crankshaft center line.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #530, 10-12-2014 05:38 PM
      Thanks for the info Fieroguru. You are totally right about the torque vs hp, especially in the TDI. The site I looked at only posted the hp for some reason.

The LS4 is certainly a possibility for me. I have been reading as much as I could about it. Thanks for the measurements. The engine model I imported into my chassis drawing is a polygon model and I can't do much with it other than to turn parts on and off from view. I guess I need to spend the money and buy a subscription for proper 3D rhino engines/ gearbox drawings.


88GTS (avanvuuren@shaw.ca) MSG #531, 10-13-2014 11:36 AM
      Don, Guru: Which VW/Audi engines are a direct bolt-on to either the 012 or 016 transmissions? Will the Audi 4.2 V8 bolt to either of them?

 
quote
Originally posted by 355Fiero:

Graham;

I had looked in to this transmission a while ago as well. It looks like a good option but from what I saw, not very easily obtainable. Not sure about the torque capabilities either but it is similar to the old 016 transmissions which can handle a V8 torque when taken care of. The 012 Audis are weaker though. g86 Porsche transmissions are better for this V8 application than an 012. The 016 trans has the shortest distance between bell housing surface and axle centers. Aside from this trans of course. Any trans setup you hook up to an SBC you will need an adapter and a custom flywheel. A fellow over on madmechanics can make an adapter and flywheel for you.

My opinion, and my opinion only, would be to either look at maybe an Audi V8 or look back at a transverse setup like Booz. All your project though so looking forward to seeing what you will end up doing.

Cheers
Don





355Fiero MSG #532, 10-13-2014 03:47 PM
      Graham.

I would be hesitant to remove the bearings from the transmission end of the belt drive. The trans bearings are not built to run with those side loads that you will put on them with the shaft not supported by some side thrust bearings.

88GT

From what I remember, the 016 was pretty much in the Audi 5000, 200 and 100cars which were all four cylinder engines. The 012 is mated to the Audi V8s so a direct bolt on should be a 4.2. I can't reminder all the combinations of engines to the 012 but most applications I have seen have been up with other engine choices so there is usually an adapter in between. I think engine man has the 4.2 in his setup over in Technical Discussion? doing a search on the 012 in Google should bring up cars and therefore engine matchup fro you.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #533, 10-13-2014 06:00 PM
      Hi Don, I agree about the bearings for the gearbox output shaft. I suspect that atleast the outer one will have to be put back in the design. I am still looking into the belt tension required although my experience is that the cogged belts require far less tension than the friction V belt. As well, the carbon belts are quite resistant to stretching so there may not be a huge amount of side load applied to the gearbox shaft. Again, all things I need to confirm first.

So far the Audi 01E is showing the most promise for my installation.



355Fiero MSG #534, 10-13-2014 11:55 PM
      Yelp. I agree.

The O1e is probably one of the best you can get for these applications. Hard to get in North America though. More plentiful in Europe. There is a fellow over on gt40s forum that can get them over here for you. I honestly can't remember his user name. I will have a look and get back to you.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #535, 10-14-2014 08:59 AM
      It looks like Advanced Automotion in Corpus Christi TX has a good selection of Audi transmissions. Has anyone ever done business with them?

http://advancedautomotion.com


355Fiero MSG #536, 10-14-2014 03:12 PM
      That's the guy. Erik from Advanced Automotion can help you out with the transmission. A very good guy to talk to as well. He is well known in the replica world fro providing excellent service.

Another option to look at is also the O1X which is very similar to teh O1E and more readily available in N/A. Again, Erik is the guy to talk to about this as he can set you up.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #537, 10-14-2014 06:25 PM
      Thanks for the confirmation Don.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #538, 10-15-2014 12:24 PM
      This is what I would love to do. Found this picture of a build by svsgt1 on a GT40 forum. Looks like he's done an amazing job installing an LS1 mated to an Audi 01e transmission. He even has the 180 degree headers.



Bloozberry MSG #539, 10-15-2014 12:53 PM
      That sure does look nice. The headers may be 180 degree, but they aren't equal length... that would take a lot more complexity. You realize if you go this route, you're going to have a lot of sucking up to do with your wife. I can just hear the conversation now: "What do you mean I can't have the entire kitchen and both bathrooms remodelled? I let you spend $20K on a stupid engine and transmission!"

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #540, 10-15-2014 01:16 PM
      I am sure I will not be the first guy or the last guy to have that conversation. But the bathroom is done so that should atleast get me a transmission. That's how it works right?

TXOPIE (tx.opie@gmail.com) MSG #541, 10-15-2014 03:28 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

I am sure I will not be the first guy or the last guy to have that conversation. But the bathroom is done so that should atleast get me a transmission. That's how it works right?


Great sense of humor, because you must be joking on the last statement! That is a one way door!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #542, 10-15-2014 03:59 PM
      I hear ya TXOPIE. And I always find myself trying to go through that one way door in the wrong direction....... and pushing harder just makes it close tighter.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #543, 10-15-2014 08:25 PM
      Ok, taking some time away from the engine / gearbox / drive arrangement ( since everyone has pointed out that my wife will never let me buy it anyway ) and getting back to rebuilding the rear structure that I recently gutted.

The lower frame rails will be fabricated from 2" x 4" x 1/8" HSS which I have made to fit over the inserts that I had fitted during my previous 3" chassis stretch. Once welded up, it will make a strong junction between the stock chassis and the new structure. I decided to run the frame rails straight back as apposed to angled inward like the stock frame rails. This will allow them to form a foundation for the new strut towers and give me a little more room in the engine bay. I am also duplicating the widened section of the lower frame rails to accept the engine cradle rear bushing/ mounting points. I opened up the inside of the widened section to allow access to the captured nuts that will eventually be in there. As you can see, I will be building a custom engine cradle that will line up with the new lower frame rails.










Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #544, 10-17-2014 08:54 PM
      Finally got the lower frame rails fabricated and tacked together. Now on to the strut towers.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #545, 10-17-2014 10:14 PM
      I have pretty much finalized the new strut tower design and location so that the caster/camber plates that I purchased with my coilover struts will fit and still allow enough travel room to get the desired caster and camber settings when it comes time to do the alignment.





The new strut tower design also minimizes the intrusion into the engine bay. Even though it only a few inches, that is valuable real estate when you are trying to squeeze a V8 in there.



fierogt28 MSG #546, 10-18-2014 10:24 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

This is what I would love to do. Found this picture of a build by svsgt1 on a GT40 forum. Looks like he's done an amazing job installing an LS1 mated to an Audi 01e transmission. He even has the 180 degree headers.



Yarmouth, that would be one hell of a set-up.

Nice work on the pics below. BTW, with women there is one word that every man has to do..."negotiating".

Women...can't stand them, can't live without'em...

Cheers...



jb1 (james.brown.20107@gmail.com) MSG #547, 10-19-2014 04:24 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

This is what I would love to do. Found this picture of a build by svsgt1 on a GT40 forum. Looks like he's done an amazing job installing an LS1 mated to an Audi 01e transmission. He even has the 180 degree headers.


looks great, someone can not build a GT40 without the "bundle of snakes"


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #548, 10-19-2014 06:56 PM
      Thanks fierogt28 and jb1. Those headers are pretty cool but as Blooz pointed out, getting them equal length is going to add a whole extra level of complexity. Hopefully I still have room for it all. As for negotiating, I do it alot for my job and I'll take the most difficult client of all over having to negotiate at home.

I started on the strut towers today and while I spent the better part of the day at it, all I have is the driverside mocked up. I really need to get a plasma cutter for the garage. Those zip wheels disappear fast and they get a little expensive buying them by the box.

The good news is I made the parts from my 3D drawing and they all fit as I expected. It's always nice to get confirmation that your drawings are somewhat accurate. As I had mentioned previously, the sides of the strut towers will be 1/8" plate and the top will be cut from 1/4" plate to resist deflection from the struts.






Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #549, 10-20-2014 01:10 PM
      Bought a few new tools this morning. A set of nine double cut carbide burs and a set of wire twisting pliers. I should have had these years ago.



Bloozberry MSG #550, 10-20-2014 03:37 PM
      Nice work on the strut towers.

zkhennings MSG #551, 10-23-2014 04:20 PM
      Could you use U joints from the transmission to an intermediate stationary point where you could attach CV joints for the axles? Much cheaper and possibly less problematic than the drive belts, which I could see being a little noisy (even if they are relatively quiet) and getting dirty unless they are protected by pretty large housings. I haven't looked at how much space you will have to achieve the displacement you need so maybe the angles would be too high for U joints, but maybe not. Also a factor is axle length, I do not know what minimum axle length you would require to keep the CV joints happy through the full range of motion.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #552, 10-23-2014 09:41 PM
      Here is a quick drawing showing a drive shaft with CV joints. It produces a joint angle of about 21 degrees. This could be improved on by tucking the engine in a little tighter to the firewall. Is this sort of what you had in mind zkhennings?



zkhennings MSG #553, 10-27-2014 07:29 AM
      Well what I was trying to accomplish was exactly what your belt drive is doing, except getting that shift with short axles with U joints.

Here is a quick MS paint picture of what I mean



Green is U joints and intermediate axle

Red is CV joints and axle to the wheels.

The black boxes with sharp edges are solid mounted positions.

I believe the U joints can achieve higher angles than CV joints as well as operate better as well. The tradeoff is that they can't accommodate for length changes like the CV joints can. The intention of the intermediate axles is to accomplish exactly what your belt drive system is doing. This way the CV joints don't have to be angled during operation at all times and would most likely function better and last longer.

At the same time however 21* isn't very bad compared to what the 4x4 guys run but they break CV joints a lot.



Bloozberry MSG #554, 10-27-2014 12:53 PM
      The reason car manufacturers have gotten away from U joints and moved to CV joints is because when run at an angle, the U joint parts speed up and slow down as they cycle around one full revolution (hence the development of constant velocity joints). Just try turning a couple socket wrench extensions with a U joint between them using your fingers and you'll see what I mean. That whipping gets worse the larger the angle is at the joint and transmits into the chassis as a vibration.

Personally, I'd stick with the belt idea. On a side note, when I was researching my own axle angle limitations I found that most CV joints can operate to a maximum of about 26 degrees, though some were limited to only 16 degrees. Also of interest is that an angle of at least one degree is required to ensure proper lubrication. Just call me Cliff Clavin.


355Fiero MSG #555, 10-27-2014 01:01 PM
      A buddy of mine used CV joints on an axle with a large angle several years ago. He found that after running it for about a week, it ran itself out of lubricant. He phoned a pile of places and finally got an expert ( I think its was an engineer at one of the axle places) and found out that CV joints are not designed to run at CONSTANT large angles. They are designed to accept large angles but only for a short periods of time such as cars turning or bumps etc. What happened to my buddy's axle was that it heated up to the point that it melted the axle grease out of the CV joint and then failed.

This was many years ago though so I am sure the CV joint technology might have improved since then and this info is from my buddy so I don't have confirmed engineering confirmation of the info. Belts would be a better option in my opinion for this much of an offset.

Cheers
Don


FieroWannaBe (patond@alumni.msoe.edu) MSG #556, 10-28-2014 08:58 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by zkhennings:

I believe the U joints can achieve higher angles than CV joints as well as operate better as well. The tradeoff is that they can't accommodate for length changes like the CV joints can. The intention of the intermediate axles is to accomplish exactly what your belt drive system is doing. This way the CV joints don't have to be angled during operation at all times and would most likely function better and last longer.

At the same time however 21* isn't very bad compared to what the 4x4 guys run but they break CV joints a lot.


Universal joints can take higher loads than most Constant Velocity joints per mass.

Universal joints do not run at a constant velocity and induces an oscillating angular acceleration in the shafts. This requires more shaft material to resist the cyclic loading and fatigue stress. The condition worsens at larger angles, this is why most RWD cars use rubber drive discs and a CV joint in their drive shafts to reduce driveline vibration, and NVH.

There are shaft designs that utilize universal joints that can accomidate the required change in length needed with splined male and female ends, or like the Jaguar and corvette, some designs utilize the drive shaft as a suspension member, so length can stay fixed.


Jefrysuko MSG #557, 10-29-2014 05:59 PM
     

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #558, 10-31-2014 06:11 AM
      Thanks for the great video jefrysuko. We use cardan shafts ( a shaft with U joint at each end and splined section in the middle) a lot in the marine field and that is the best video I've seen on the use and misuse of shafts and U joints. A couple years ago we invested in a laser alignment tool just for aligning cardan and its almost completely eliminated shaft issues. But I have to wonder how automobiles don't have more issues considering that the wheel end of the shaft is not fixed relative to the engine end, especially at high rpm's. Anyone with thoughts on this?

Neils88 (nellerin@dal.ca) MSG #559, 10-31-2014 06:00 PM
      Instead of belts, have you considered a simple 1:1 ratio gear train?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #560, 10-31-2014 06:20 PM
      I had considered gears but keeping it all lubricated would require building fully enclosed gearboxes. The belts do not require any lubrication.

bubbajoexxx (bubbajoexx@sympatico.ca) MSG #561, 11-01-2014 12:39 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

I had considered gears but keeping it all lubricated would require building fully enclosed gearboxes. The belts do not require any lubrication.

use the gear boxes from a VW bus they are enclosed units


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #562, 11-01-2014 08:57 PM
      I don't really know much about VW's bubbajoexxx. I'll have to do a little research on that for sure.

Spent some time today working on notching the upper frame rails, similar to what Blooz has already completed. This is necessary as the finished car will be much lower and even though the track has been widened, the inner edge of the tire is going to impinge on the space occupied by the upper frame rail. My goal is to have 3 1/2" of clearance which should be enough as I'll only have a maximum suspension travel of 3". I started with the drivers side and once I marked out the arc through the rail, it was a quick cut with the jigsaw. I decided to notch the frame rail completely though to the inside surface as I wanted to remove the inner flange in an effort to ensure my strut had plenty of room in it's new wide track position. Once cut, I basically capped the notch on the bottom as well as the inside and outside faces of the upper frame rail with 1/8" plate. I extended the inner surface upward enough to form the surface that the new strut tower will be fastened to. It's all just tacked together at this time.

Here are a few drawings of the arrangement.







And here are a couple pictures of the drivers side cut out and the new pieces fitted in place and tacked together.







bubbajoexxx (bubbajoexx@sympatico.ca) MSG #563, 11-02-2014 11:08 AM
     





here are a few pics of some units


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #564, 11-11-2014 12:57 PM
      Happy Remembrance Day and thank you to all the men and women who have served our country and continue to serve today.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6A1QQS3hgQ




Neils88 (nellerin@dal.ca) MSG #565, 11-11-2014 01:52 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by bubbajoexxx:




What is the gear ratio of the units in the upper two pictures? If they are 1:1 then they are exactly what I was thinking of. Any idea what torque they can handle?



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #566, 11-11-2014 02:59 PM
      They look like the casing is slightly oblong, similar to the bottom picture which appears to have a 1 : 1.25 ratio ( depending on which is the input shaft )

bubbajoexxx (bubbajoexx@sympatico.ca) MSG #567, 11-11-2014 04:38 PM
      yes and if you use them correctly it will give you a final drive of 3.35 to 1

bubbajoexxx (bubbajoexx@sympatico.ca) MSG #568, 11-11-2014 04:39 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Neils88:


What is the gear ratio of the units in the upper two pictures? If they are 1:1 then they are exactly what I was thinking of. Any idea what torque they can handle?

there are a host of diferant gears available from vw sellers


Bloozberry MSG #569, 11-24-2014 01:31 PM
      Holy crap Graham... I had to bump your thread up from something like #25! At least I have a legitimate excuse for being #24 (and now taking your former place at #25). What's going on in Yarmouth?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #570, 11-24-2014 03:27 PM
      Hey Blooz. I've been busy working on the notch and reinforcement of the upper passenger side frame rail as well as finalizing some design work for the new strut towers. I've also been doing some design work around the LS1 and Audi gearbox as well as working out the basic design for the new engine cradle. On a positive note, I ran my dual drive belt design by a close engineer friend who builds dragsters and he thinks the idea has merit ( assuming the belts do what they claim )

To be honest, I have been a little hesitant to post any progress updates knowing you were home laid up in bed for a few months, unable to get out in your shop.


Bloozberry MSG #571, 11-24-2014 03:49 PM
      It didn't happen unless there are pictures!

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 11-24-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #572, 11-25-2014 12:15 PM
      Here is Sam's car Blooz. He raced in the 60's and 70's and just spent the last 5 years restoring it for racing. I think the body exterior is still stock.

This was taken at Greenfield this summer.



FieroWannaBe (patond@alumni.msoe.edu) MSG #573, 11-25-2014 12:31 PM
      Have you ruled out Subaru transaxles? The front diff can be spooled to the output shaft easily enough, and they have a strong aftermarket.

eph_kay (cjcoulter@me.com) MSG #574, 11-26-2014 11:32 AM
      I hate to put down any ideas, but I think there is gonna be a struggle with audi or subaru transmissions, without using the belt idea he is talking about.

I am working on a diablo replica, 10" stretch or so, for a local guy and I am working on putting a 5.3 iron block LS motor in front of a subaru 4 speed auto, and not only is it almost too long from fire wall to axle length, it takes up all of the room after the cradle to the back of the body too. This is all based on the adapter plate I had made and the lengths I measured, sadly I haven't test fit it yet

Chris


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #575, 12-06-2014 01:55 PM
      Lately, I have been working on the new strut towers, lower frame rails and boxing in my engine bay to make everything suitably strong enough to support an eventual longitudinal LS1 and Audi Transmission. As I mentioned, the intake manifold on the LS1 will have to be reversed to allow some form of intake plenum that isn't coming through the firewall. As it often happens, Blooz's build has sparked an idea for my project related to how to get the air from the door scoops into the engine bay and eventually the engine. Due to the fact that I have added structural members to reinforce my rockers to compensate for the roof being removed, I am not able to add the radiators in the scoops like Blooz is doing. However, I have given some thought to ducting the side scoop air into the engine and here is a very rough conceptual drawing showning both side scoops feeding air filter boxes prior to being plumbed to the engine intake manifold. Keep in mind that at this stage, its just an exercise to map out a possible ducting route. The engine shown is still a SBC and the intake filter boxes, scoop plenums and ducting are just random geometric shapes of approximate dimensions. But its a starting point.





Bloozberry MSG #576, 12-07-2014 08:18 AM
      Me likey! It's reminiscent of the way the 348 runs it's intake plumbing:



I'm 99% certain that the F355 convertibles get the intake air from a "Y" branch in the radiator shroud, upstream of the radiators, so your idea is close to the way it done on the actual cars.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #577, 12-07-2014 08:42 AM
      Thanks for the feedback and pics of the 348 Blooz. I am sure there is an opportunity to make an attractive yet functional ducting system for my car. Looking at the 348 pic you posted, I notice the open strut towers. That certainly raises and interesting possibility....... before I complete my final welding.

edit to add: I am also questioning the design of my strut tower gussets. I am just not happy with my design at all. In their current form, they are heavy and inefficient, so for now I am leaving them out in lieu of something better. Perhaps some functional cross bracing like the 348.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 12-07-2014).]

Bloozberry MSG #578, 12-07-2014 09:00 AM
      If I'm not mistaken, those cross braces serve double duty: to triangulate the strut "towers", and to support the transmission from the top side.

Bloozberry MSG #579, 12-07-2014 01:44 PM
      Here's some inspiration for you from a real F355:



And with the suspension attached:



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #580, 12-07-2014 06:22 PM
      Very cool pictures Blooz. I will certainly glean some inspiration from them.

Edit: I hope your client won't mind you stripping the rear end out of their car so you could take a picture for me.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 12-07-2014).]

85-308 MSG #581, 12-09-2014 09:50 AM
      Loving this thread; thanks for posting! Great ideas and discussion.
Questions for you - and if this info is already in the thread I missed it, my bad - have you considered inboard shocks at all?
What items are' carved in stone' for you, with respect to suspension, engine and transmission; ie already bought and you will not budge on those items, or similar fixed approach.. anything?
From what I can tell you have your final ride height and widths sorted out and now are trying to come up with something that works in that space - would that be fairly accurate? So right now anything flies?
Again, thanks for sharing!
GP



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #582, 12-09-2014 11:01 AM
      Thanks 85-308. With regard to the rear suspension and brakes, I have purchased QA1 coilovers and Wilwood 13" rotors and hats. I have not selected calipers yet as I am still researching piston area suitable for this car. I have purchased 18" Drag wheels for the rear with Dunlop rubber. With regard to the engine and gearbox, I am really leaning toward a longitudinal setup and as such, have dropped the 350 SBC for an LS1 mainly because the intake is easily reversible and thus I can tuck the engine in close behind the firewall. I am also looking seriously at the Audi 01E gearbox as it has been mated to an LS1 in the past by other builders. Also, by going longitudinal, I should be able to install 180 degree headers a little more easily. I am pretty confident the belt drive is going to work which will solve many of the drive shaft alignment issues. As well, as I have mentioned, I will do a custom rear subframe and once this design is further developed, I'll finalize the rear control arms. I decided a while back to stick with traditional coilovers rather than inboard suspension simply because I do not feel comfortable with suspension design and felt the coilovers with a lowered and widened track would meet my performance needs.

Thanks for your questions. I'll try to get some updates on the project shortly. I have a lot of the material cut, fitted and tacked. I'm just backlogged on my final welding as I have that done by a certified welder.


85-308 MSG #583, 12-09-2014 12:18 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Thanks 85-308. With regard to the rear suspension and brakes, I have purchased QA1 coilovers and Wilwood 13" rotors and hats. I have not selected calipers yet as I am still researching piston area suitable for this car. I have purchased 18" Drag wheels for the rear with Dunlop rubber. With regard to the engine and gearbox, I am really leaning toward a longitudinal setup and as such, have dropped the 350 SBC for an LS1 mainly because the intake is easily reversible and thus I can tuck the engine in close behind the firewall. I am also looking seriously at the Audi 01E gearbox as it has been mated to an LS1 in the past by other builders. Also, by going longitudinal, I should be able to install 180 degree headers a little more easily. I am pretty confident the belt drive is going to work which will solve many of the drive shaft alignment issues. As well, as I have mentioned, I will do a custom rear subframe and once this design is further developed, I'll finalize the rear control arms. I decided a while back to stick with traditional coilovers rather than inboard suspension simply because I do not feel comfortable with suspension design and felt the coilovers with a lowered and widened track would meet my performance needs.

Thanks for your questions. I'll try to get some updates on the project shortly. I have a lot of the material cut, fitted and tacked. I'm just backlogged on my final welding as I have that done by a certified welder.


Looking forward to it! Your LSx and 01E choices are exactly the same as where I am at for my next project. Right now they look great. For what it is worth, the LS4 is a bit shorter due to the crank and front end accessories, but it has the metric bell housing bolt pattern, so I don't know how hard it might be to bolt/adapt to the 01E. Also it has the starter mounted on the (auto) trans so that has to be accomplished. It might save a bit of longitudinal overall length is all. Do you have a transaxle source yet? I have had great response to my questions from Scott at Advanced Automotion in Texas; they sell FWD version 01E transaxles, rebuilt for heavy duty (or heavier duty, anyway) and 'off the record' - I guess, without specific testing(?) - they suggest these should be capable of holding up to 600 ft lbs under street (intermittent abuse) and about 450-ish ft lbs under racing/constant abuse. Prices seemed very reasonable to me for this kind of capability!

First tho I need to finish my LS4/F40 project! I don't want to restart again on it. That would be .... ummm... too many times to count?!?!?




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #584, 12-09-2014 12:31 PM
      I have been looking at the Advanced Automotion products as well, especially with the Wavetrac differential. I think that will be key to making my belt drive work. For the LSI I have been looking at Turn Key Powertrain for an LS1 crate engine with computer and harness.

I have not contacted either of them yet but I'll likely pull the trigger on the gearbox before the engine.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #585, 12-14-2014 05:07 PM
      Well, today we finally got some welding done. My daughter's boyfriend is a very skilled welder and he has been completing all the critical welds for me.



The lower frame rails, strut towers and upper frame rail notch reinforcement are all welded final and ready for assembly on the chassis. Its takes a lot of effort to assemble everything and make sure along the way that everything remains true and straight. I don't want this project tracking towards the ditch or centerline unexpectantly.



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #586, 12-26-2014 06:07 PM
      Merry Christmas and wishes of health and happiness to all.

In an effort to ward off turkey brain, I spent the day completing the final fitting of the passenger side strut tower and engine bay side enclosure. The new structure ties the upper and lower frame rails together along their entire length creating one large longitudinal beam. Once the driver side structure is complete, together with the stock rear transverse frame of the upper frame rails and the additional rear transverse frame on the lower frames rails, as well as the firewall / rollover hoop transverse frame, the entire structure will form a complete boxed structure surrounding the entire engine bay. As well, the future custom designed and built engine cradle will add additional stiffness to the rear structure, all in an effort to handle the proposed 400 hp LS1 and Audi gearbox.

Before final welding, I'll sandblast and prime all the individual pieces. Here are a few images of the design and the actual parts.













fieroguru MSG #587, 12-26-2014 06:23 PM
      Those panels look really nice and smooth! Is that 16ga material?
Looks like they are thicker than they need to be and heavier than they could be. My only concern would be the added weight in the rear.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #588, 12-26-2014 07:27 PM
      Hi Fieroguru

All the material for the strut tower and engine bay plating is 1/8" plate. While it does look heavy, the strut towers are actually about 4 lbs lighter that the stock pieces. With regard to the engine bay plating, I expect to still be under stock weight considering I have removed all the trunk material as well as the stock sheet metal from the engine bay side plating. Also, while the pieces look big and heavy, the actual parts are barely 3 sqft of plate per side. Now, my lower frame rails are a few pounds heavier per side than the stock pieces but I'm willing to gain a couple pounds in an effort to have a stiff structure that can take a full pen weld as apposed to spot welds.

I really should keep a better record of the weight changes I guess. It's all coming off for blasting and priming so I can still weigh everything before final assembly and I have most of the stock material in my scrap bucket for comparison.

I am still seriously considering a full carbon fiber body which is going to produce significant weight savings in the end, especially compared to a glass body with filler and foam. And of course I'm quadrupling the hp of the engine over stock You know all about those benefits I'm sure

Edit: for typo

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 12-26-2014).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #589, 12-26-2014 07:36 PM
      As a side note Fieroguru, I am toying with the idea of an aluminum engine cradle since I can isolate it from the steel chassis with poly bushings. I'm still designing this and calculating the possible weight savings here. But I think it will be significantly lighter compared to a stock engine cradle.

Does anyone know if this has been done yet?


fieroguru MSG #590, 12-26-2014 08:30 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

As a side note Fieroguru, I am toying with the idea of an aluminum engine cradle since I can isolate it from the steel chassis with poly bushings. I'm still designing this and calculating the possible weight savings here. But I think it will be significantly lighter compared to a stock engine cradle.

Does anyone know if this has been done yet?


mwhite modified an aluminum grandprix cradle (stock LS4 cradle) for his LS4/F40 swap and ended up at 44 lbs, stock 88 cradle is 50 lbs.
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum2/HTML/123953.html


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #591, 12-26-2014 08:57 PM
      Thanks for the link Fieroguru. That's a complicated piece of structure once its all chopped and assembled. I'll continue with my design and see what I come up with but its entirely possible aluminum may not be the way to go. Luckily I have access to a wide variety of aluminum extrusions at work from which to choose from.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #592, 12-27-2014 12:46 PM
      As a follow up to Fieroguru's question regarding the weight of my structural changes to the engine bay, I loaded up the old trunk with all the steel parts removed from my chassis aft of the fire wall. This does not include the lower frame rails as I no longer have them. However, the total weight of steel removed so far is 65 lbs. This includes strut towers, trunk and related structure, engine bay plating and upper frame rail notches.



The total weight of the new strut towers, engine bay plating, upper frame reinforcement and new transverse frame between the lower frame rails is.............. 65 lbs. How odd is that? Even I was suprised so I weighed everything a second time to be sure. This does not include the weight of the 3" chassis stretch which is already welded in but I estimate to be approximately 1 lb per side. My new lower frame rails weigh 17 lbs each which I am sure is a few pounds heavier than the stock units. So it looks like my chassis modifications should only result in a slight increase in chassis weight when its all done. Another bonus is that I have shifted the C of G of the chassis slightly forward due to the removal of the trunk and related structure which was all located behind the rear suspension.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #593, 12-27-2014 05:16 PM
      Gotta love a 4 day weekend. I got the drivers side engine bay panels fabricated and test fitted. Now all that's left is to get all the parts blasted and primed and then welded in once and for all. I have a design for the strut tower top that suits the QA1 caster/ camber plates I purchased with the coil overs. I'll get those laser cut at work from 3/16" plate so that the adjusting slots are uniform and positioned perpendicular to the slots in the camber / caster plates.







fierogt28 MSG #594, 12-27-2014 10:13 PM
      Hi Yarmouth,

I see in your trunk metal parts bin you have the gray carpet push tabs retainers.

Are you throwing tham out?? If so, I like to have them as long as they are removed with care.
I don't want the tree ends to be chewed up.

We could work out a payment or parts trade if your interested.

LMK, Thanks...


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #595, 12-28-2014 07:10 AM
      Good eye fierogt28. I'll see if I can get them out. PM sent.

Bloozberry MSG #596, 12-28-2014 08:07 AM
      Sure cleans up the engine bay! What are your plans for the rear cradle mounts? There looks to be a disconnect between orientation of the ones on the frame rail and those on the cradle. What's up with that?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #597, 12-28-2014 08:12 AM
      Oops. I hadn't noticed Blooz. I'll have to put in the cradle stretcher at work

85-308 MSG #598, 12-28-2014 11:48 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

Sure cleans up the engine bay! What are your plans for the rear cradle mounts? There looks to be a disconnect between orientation of the ones on the frame rail and those on the cradle. What's up with that?


Thought it was just me..... Yet the front cradle mounts are bolted in place.....
Details required here!! What's the plan?



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #599, 12-28-2014 12:06 PM
      The plan? That's a tough question ha-ha-ha. With regard to the stock cradle being bolted in place, I am merely using it as a guide to help ensure my new lower frame rails are relatively parallel to the chassis. Its not perfect but the stock cradle is the only thing back there that probably hasn't sagged, warped or twisted during the excavation of my engine bay. When its all welded up and proven true to the chassis, I'll add the stock engine cradle to the scrap bin and build a new cradle that is wider, longer and suited to support the LS1 and Audi gearbox. It turns out that the track width increase in the suspension is about equal to the width increase of my lower frame rails that now run parallel and also my cradle design so my control arms should retain their stock length and thus keep the suspension geometry unchanged....... approximately.

As mentioned in a previous post, I am considering an aluminum engine cradle....... but that decision has yet to be carved in stone.


85-308 MSG #600, 12-28-2014 12:57 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

the excavation of my engine bay.


EXCELLENT choice of words!

So you'll fit custom or Arraut (or similar) lower control arms/radius rods/links to the new cradle, to simulate the existing? AKA: you'll more-or-less duplicate that geometry? Apologies if I missed it; you are going to use '88-based geometry/components?

I'm going to be doing 'something' the same and am hoping for a guinea pig, here! I won't be doing it in alum; looks like too much complication for too little pay-back, plus I am not set up anymore for welding aluminum so even being able to 'tack' things in place would be fussy. I'm sure you are WAAAAYYYYY ahead on that issue, so not a concern for you.

I got the 88 dimensional dwgs from Blooze (thanks! ) and will use that as the basis for a wider cradle to suit the wider body. Interestingly, he noted that GM's chassis alignment was 'in the order of' +/- 3 mm or so - I'd have to re-check the number before anyone goes running off building a cradle on that basis, but it seemed like a fair bit from the actual manufacturer.....


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #601, 12-28-2014 02:17 PM
      Thanks 85-308. I thought "Excavation" sounded a little more constructive than "Demolishion"

My original plan was to use the Arraut bump steer control arms and if I find that my final control arm length is still within their available range I may still go that route. If not, I'll have to build my own with a similar bump steer arrangement.

With regard to aluminum, I don't weld it either. However, the shipyard I work for builds alot of aluminum vessels and we have some of the most talented aluminum welders on this side of the country. So I have that in my favor. I know there is some doubt whether an aluminum cradle will yield significant weight savings but considering my cradle will be a little larger than stock, I think I can come up with a design that is strong and light(ish).


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #602, 12-29-2014 07:15 PM
      Well, all the parts have been blasted and primed and are now balanced precariously for a photo opportunity. Next step is to carefully weld it all in place without warping what's left of the original chassis.







Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #603, 12-30-2014 05:43 AM
      Okay, maybe I should move to Nova Scotia and become neighbour's with you and Dave. It seems like you all have more time in a day than the rest of us! Are there 36 hour days in NS? Just kidding. Excellent work so far.
Shayne


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #604, 12-30-2014 07:12 AM
      Thanks Shayne. I wish there were more hours in the day sometimes. It must only seem like a lot gets done fast because for me, my project seems to go very slow. I spend weeks and months figuring out what I want to do and then complete the design before I start any fabrication. Then I have a short spurt of actual build time. I don't have an artistic bone in my body and could never attempt to "freestyle" my build. It would be a complete disaster ha-ha-ha. You really have to admire and envy guys like Car-Lo that can visualize something in their mind and then bring it to life with their hands and in the end produce something that is both beautiful and functional.

edit: for typos

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 12-30-2014).]

355Fiero MSG #605, 12-31-2014 03:37 PM
      Looking really nice Yarmouth Fiero;

That is one clean looking engine bay....

I still say that Audi V8 with an 012 transaxle like engine man did would look amazing in the engine bay. Shorter by a bit as well so it would fit in much nicer than an SBC and no need for an adaptor plate. The engine management system would end up the same as your adaptor plate build and the rubber belt system. Just a thought.....

Happy New Year.
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #606, 12-31-2014 03:58 PM
      Thanks for your input Don. I was just shutting down for 5pm. I agree with you and I am still throwing engine / gearbox possibilities around. There are a number of options and they all have their strengths and weaknesses for sure. I still have lots of fab work to do so until then, I'll keep researching. Have a safe and prosperous New Year.

Graham


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #607, 01-01-2015 04:55 PM
      I took a few hours today to lay out a preliminary design for my new engine cradle and hopefully alleviate a few members concerns regarding my misfitting stock cradle.

I based the design on an aluminum structure so at the moment the longintudinal frames as 4" x 3" x 1/4" HSS and the cross frames are 3" x 2" x 1/4" HSS. I've also included poly bushings at this time. Once I have an engine and gearbox finalized, I'll locate the cross members and suitable gussets properly to strengthen the structure and support the require engine / gearbox mounts.

Edit to add: aluminum cradle as shown weights approx 52 lbs.





Here are a couple pictures showing the suspension in place. I added a simple tubular control arm to give an idea of the horizontal orientation.







And of cousre...... the money shot.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-01-2015).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #608, 01-02-2015 12:40 PM
      If the Ferrari F355 wheel base is 96.5" and they can fit the driveline in longitudinally. Your wheel base, with the added 3", is very close to the Ferrari (within .100"). Can you not use/find a different transaxle with the output shaft's closer to the rear of the engine? This belt drive system, while cool, adds much complexity and weight to your build. I know the SBC is long at the front with the water pump, pulleys, etc and I'm sure the Ferrari has a shorter engine. (I don't know, I've never seen one up close). Just curious.

PS-The Porsche 914 transaxle is about 8" from bellhousing to output shaft.


The overall is close to 24",

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 01-02-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #609, 01-02-2015 01:01 PM
      Thanks Lunatic. If it's possible to avoid the belt drive, I certainly will. I still have to lower my engine in my drawing which will allow me move it forward a bit more. I still haven't found a good technical drawing of the LS1 so I may try to find a blown LS1 to mock up the arrangement. Here is a drawing of an Audi 016 gearbox which I'm told is very similar to the 01E. The dimensions seem to be similar to your pictures. Thanks for posting them btw. I appreciate all the input I can muster.



85-308 MSG #610, 01-03-2015 09:30 AM
      Just for info, the O1E is 7.5" from the bellhousing surface to the centre of the output axles; and you 'might' consider an LS4 which is the shortest of the LS series engines; they did a few things to it to make it shorter overall to fit in the transverse arrangement of the Impala SS etc etc... where every fraction of an inch counts maybe that would help?
The block itself isn't shorter or different except that the starter gets mounted on the trans instead of the engine and the accessories on the front, as well as the LS4 crankshaft 'snout' is shorter/shallower to make the overall finished 'length' or width in the case of the Impala, Monte etc, shorter to fit in the engine bay. All this might help....


fieroguru MSG #611, 01-03-2015 10:41 AM
      Here is a rough dimension pics. You can print them out larger and use some calipers and the known "scale" to get the other important dimensions as well. :



Not sure if you could use this one:
http://grabcad.com/library/ls1-race-engine

[This message has been edited by fieroguru (edited 01-03-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #612, 01-03-2015 10:57 AM
      Thanks Fieroguru.... printing an engine drawing to scale is exactly what I am going to do. I have a 42" wide plotter in my office. I have the Grabcad images but they are only pdf's. Good for reference though. I think I'll be able to generate a pretty close 3D model from the selection of images and measurements I have. Thank you for the additional drawings you have posted.

seajai MSG #613, 01-03-2015 05:24 PM
      Yarmouth, I love watching your build, and bloozberry's too. The engineering and fabrication is amazing. I just wanted to interject some measurement info here since I have already been down the longitudinal route myself.

The Chrysler 3.5HO engine / 42LE transaxle I used was 26.5" long from the face of the harmonic balancer to axle centerline. Even clearancing the lower frame and firewall to move the engine as far forward as possible left me with a 2.5" axle offset with the wheel centerline without a stretch. Looking at the LS measurements, the engine alone is 24" long without accessories on the front, add in 8" for the transmission, another 3.5" for accessories brings the total to 35 1/2" long. That being said, you would need at least an 11.5" stretch to have a zero axle offset with the LS/01e setup. The other issue is the slope of the firewall will interfere with the waterpump pulley which would require cutting a hole ine the firewall, moving the engine back even further, or running a remote pump. It would be interesting to know what the Ferrari engine measures from the front of the engine to the axle centerline. Even though your wheelbase will be close to the F355, I'd bet the Ferrari engine is tucked up in the body a little further than would be possible with the Fiero spaceframe.

[This message has been edited by seajai (edited 01-03-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #614, 01-03-2015 09:37 PM
      Thanks for the comments Seajai. I find it very satisfying to put the effort into the design of the project and almost as satisfying as the actual build itself. Your supplied measurements confirm exactly what I am finding in my 3D model..... basically everything behind the LS1 bellhousing has to be accounted for in either chassis stretch, shaft offset angle, offset drive system (a.k.a belt drive) or a combination of these parameters. When you add the thickness of the adapter plate, engine bay insulation etc, the length becomes even greater. As I have pointed out a while back, Blooz and I will be developing our 355 bodies together off the same plug so stretching the 355 any further than 3" is not an option. I am totally onboard with that. However, on a side note, I think the 355 spider would look very interesting stretched out like a lambo. I think the wide rear track of the 355 would accommodate such an extreme stretch and still be aesthetically pleasing. I wish I was an artist.......

kennn (kbrooksarchitect@cox.net) MSG #615, 01-06-2015 01:50 PM
      Yarmouth, go over to 85SEnotchie's link on Fiero Chat. He is an artist skilled in Photoshop and has helped others in your situation. He did a beautiful stretch of an Archie's widebody for someone over there.

Ken



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #616, 01-06-2015 02:37 PM
      Thanks for the heads up Ken. I'll check it out.

Graham

Edit to add: Just picked up a blown Gen III engine to use for mocking up my engine bay. I'll also use the cold weather as an excuse to sit down and measure and model the engine in 3D since I've had little luck finding a suitable model online.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-06-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #617, 01-06-2015 09:19 PM
      Uhhh... by "blown", I suspect you mean "junked" rather than "with supercharger" right?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #618, 01-07-2015 07:27 AM
      Yes, I mean this........



as opposed to this........



Bloozberry MSG #619, 01-07-2015 08:12 AM
      Rats.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #620, 01-18-2015 06:51 PM
      Taking a little breather from the engine / gearbox work, I decided to put some thought into the rear suspension again. Having a basic arrangement for the new engine cradle, I have begun working on the rear control arms. I am going to build my own control arms to suit the wide track of my project. As well, I want to try and incorporate the bumpsteer correction, similar to what is on the market currently. Having read through archived threads on the topic for reference, I have attemped to get the control arm at the desired position at ride height and keep the bump steer linkage in the same plane as the control arm with the outer end linkage in the same line as the ball joint. Here are a few images of the arrangement. I have yet to confirm the kinematics of the linkages so it's likely going to take some tweeking yet.













Edit to add last image

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-18-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #621, 01-19-2015 06:54 AM
      Superb drawings, as always. You should consider making a nice poster for the shop walls some day when it's finished.

The configuration looks like it should work... the nice wide spacing on the inboard control arm mounts will resist toe and apply accel and decel forces to the frame better than stock. You shouldn't get any toe throughout the range of suspension travel other than through bushing compliance under load. When that does happen, you'll want to make sure that the outside tire toes in rather than out otherwise you'll be battling oversteer. With the powertrain configuration you're planning, you'll probably have a greater rear weight distribution than stock and a greater propensity to oversteer too. Anxious to see the analysis.


85-308 MSG #622, 01-19-2015 11:19 AM
      Nice! I like your toe-defeat solution. Very similar to what I was thinking of (I don't have nice dwgs like that to post..) Obviously you're keeping the 84-87 spindles and the lengths of the 'tie rod' should be perfect.

Question - if you're there yet: How do you plan on connecting the outboard end of this 'tie rod' to the spindle itself; ie right at/near the ball joint? Welding? it is at the pinch nut location.
I was looking at bolting it to the spindle but still playing with that a bit.

Keep it up; great tech article in all respects!
GP


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #623, 01-19-2015 11:44 AM
      Thanks for asking 85-308. I have designed an albeit, rudimentary bracket that will be bolted at the lower end to the ball joint pinch bolt ( there is a nice flat surface already ) with the upper end being bolted to the spindle stock tie rod location. I'll drill the taper out of that hole first. I'll likely use grade 8 bolts and nuts with locking wire for added safety. I may also add a small gusset to this fabricated bracket for extra strength. I don't advocate welding to the OEM cast spindle unless you know what you are doing.

When I am designing / drawing, I tend to leave the fasteners out of the picture so that I can easily see if I have accidently shifted a part because the holes no longer line up. Its too easy to "bump" a part in the drawing if I haven't locked the layers first and then keep on drawing like everything is ok. Plus its easier to snap to centers of holes when the fasteners are hidden from view. I hope this answered your question.


85-308 MSG #624, 01-19-2015 11:55 AM
      Ok s you're not using a ball joint there; similar to what some of the kits do, and bolting it solid. The spindle is cast steel, I guess, since it does 'flex' at the pinch bolt, but I agree, in my bit of research on welding different materials I don't think I want to touch it with weld...


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #625, 01-19-2015 12:06 PM
      No, I am using a ball joint and using the pinch bolt to hold the ball joint and the extended bracket for the bump steer correction. Unfortunately I don't have my updated drawing on my work computer so I can't post more detailed pictures until tonight. I'll capture a few images that show that area in better detail. Sorry about that.

355Fiero MSG #626, 01-19-2015 06:13 PM
      Yarmouth Fiero;

I went through a bunch of this analysis back when I was building my extended rear suspension. Albeit, my drawings were very crude and not nearly to yours and Blooz's standards..... I came up with an option that does not require a a trailing arm of any sort.

I would be interested in yours and Blooz's opinions on the setup I thought about.... You replace the ball joint at the bottom of the hub with a bolt and nut setup and make a cross bar setup at the bottom. As per my drawing. I always though that this would allow the hub to move up and down and not introduce bump but, again, I did not go through a lot of analysis on this. It was more of a drawing exercise than anything.

In the end, I moved my trailing arm pivots outward from their original locations on the cradle so that they pivoted pretty much over the suspension pivots on the cradle. Through moving the tire and rim through its entire motion, I removed all but about 1/16" or bump at full extension and contraction. By that time, I was already rolling so not so worried about bump by then......

Back to my thought, the picture below shows what my thought was. The top image is what I ended up going with for my wider suspension but the middle image is what I was thinking about after I had built the top one.

Cheers
Don




Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #627, 01-19-2015 07:50 PM
      Thanks Don. That is an interesting concept. So is that showing a custom spindle with two pivots on the bottom end? If so, that would cure the bumpsteer for sure. I guess because I am changing my engine cradle quite a bit, I decided to get away from mounting the inboard end of the tie rod there. I think once I tweek my design and then test the kinematics, it should give results more than acceptable for my project. I don't plan on racing it anyway

Edit to add: To 85-308, here is a shot of my design with the bump steer bracket bolted in place. Hope this helps.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-19-2015).]

85-308 MSG #628, 01-19-2015 09:25 PM
      ahhhh
NOW I get it; good idea. Thx!
GP


zkhennings MSG #629, 01-20-2015 05:05 PM
      I had the exact same idea even down to using the pinch bolt as the attachment surface! It's floating around here somewhere.

I designed it to not be in single shear however and had a U shaped piece that went over the ball joint so the pinch bolt would go through both sides. I also had some additional reinforcement gusseting at the 90*, but I am sure you will too, excited to see how it turns out!


355Fiero MSG #630, 01-20-2015 06:43 PM
      Graham;

The setup I drew was very similar to how you are set up except instead of having the training arm going to the inner mount location, I made a square bar that connects to the control arm both sides and then the Fiero hub bolts to the square bar and an arm comes up from the square bar to the trailing arm mount on the hub. The Fiero hub bolts to the square bar and the trailing arm mount.

If you took your drawing and made a square tube that bolts to the Fiero hub where the ball joint currently is, and extended your trailing arm hub mount down to that square tube, you would have my design. The ends of the square tube would connect to the control arm ends through hiem joints or pivot points similar to the inner control arm mounts.

I will see if I can do up a quick side view to show how the Fiero hub mates to the square tube on the control arm.

Cheers
Don


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #631, 01-20-2015 07:11 PM
      Hi Don. I am having a hard time visualizing your idea. Perhaps a side view would clear it up for me.

I saw your drawings in a thread from 2012 zkhennings and it certainly inspired my current design. I have some concern regarding your idea of pinching the ball joint pinch point though. If the piece restricts the clamping force on the ball joint shaft at all because of the extra stiffness of the additional material, it could possibly allow the ball joint to pull out due to reduced clamping load on the ball joint shaft. The OEM spindle design relies on the material deforming to provide the clamping force on the ball joint shaft. Even in my current arrangement I have concerns that the ball joint clamp is restricted on one side causing the casting to be deformed more on one side of the ball joint than the other. With regard to having the bolts in double shear, I think having the assembly bolted to the ball joint shaft as well as up at the tie rod connection should be adequate considering the most significant force on the tie rod is compression or tension as the spindle ( wheel assembly) tries to pivot about the ball joint axis. Like your earlier design, I will add a gusset between the horizontal and vertical parts of the assembly. I'll try to update the drawing accordingly tonight

Edit to add: as seen in the drawing below, is there a concern that the additional structure will prevent the green side of the ball joint clamp from deforming as much as the red side, causing the red side deform more and possibly crack under load? The spindle casting is machined to an specific thickness to allow the correct deformation when the ball joint bolt is torqued.

Input on this always appreciated.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-20-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #632, 01-20-2015 09:12 PM
      Doesn't the ball joint stud have a groove for the pinch bolt? That would positively hold the two together.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #633, 01-20-2015 09:27 PM
      Indeed it does Blooz. So theoretically, they shouldn't come apart regardless of the clamping force applied.

I guess that's my green light to proceed.


355Fiero MSG #634, 01-21-2015 08:09 PM
      Yarmouth Fiero;

Hopefully this crude drawing shows more of what I am talking about. Looks like you are going down a solid path though so good luck.

Cheers
Don



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #635, 01-21-2015 08:39 PM
      Thanks for the great drawing Don. Its not crude at all. Your design is very clear to me now. Its an interesting concept and has great merit as a functional and practical solution to the common problem many of us have been contemplating. I think in the end, we all recognize what has to be achieved and there are certainly many ways to catch this mouse. I think the key thing to recognize is that any changes to the suspension of a car need to be well thought out and the solution / design needs to take into account the extreme forces that each component of the suspension will experience. In the end, we have to be comfortable with our design and our construction techniques because its us who will ultimately drive it and enjoy it......... someday

Thanks for sharing your design.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #636, 01-23-2015 10:39 PM
      Continuing on with the design of the rear suspension, I ordered a set of rear poly bushings from TFS, a set of QA1 spherical rod ends with jam nuts and a length of 1 1/4" x 0.120" and a length of 1" x 0.120" DOM mechanical tube for my lower control arms. I got a new set of rear ball joints from Blooz in exchange for some FRP supplies last weekend and he also has a spare set of 9" tie rod swaged tubes that I hope to purchase.

I worked on the control arm design this week and made a few changes to get the tie rod aligned with the ball joint to minimize toe in change. I also realized that my new engine cradle deign was 0.6" too low so I raised it up to give a true 5" of ground clearance. This changed my static control arm angle from 3.64 deg to 6.23 degrees below horizontal. I think I can live with this but I'll see how the geometry performs.

With these suspension updates, I proceeded to plot the kinematics of the rear suspension. This is quite new to me so I started with plotting the camber vs the suspension travel. Here are the results in tabular and graphical form. I also borrowed the stock suspension data from Blooz's page 16. I guess its really comparing apples to oranges considering my suspension is '85 and his is '88 but atleast it gives some idea where my design stands. While I was at it, I recorded the amount of strut travel and the amount of lateral travel of the spindle. For the most part, it was less than 1/16" until the car becomes airborn......... and then I'll be smiling too much to really worry about it.





The next step will be to measure body roll and calculate the effect on the suspension geometry. That is a whole other can of lobster.

Edit: to swap graph axis and correct units

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-24-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #637, 01-24-2015 04:13 PM
      Just so you don't think you're seeing things, I have updated my camber data and corresponding graph. It was pointed out that my graph appeared too linear so I collected the data a second time. This time I used my actual 3D model to calculate the results and the new data does seem to be significantly different...... hopefully in a good way. As I had mentioned above, I had to raise my cradle 0.6" to give the proper 5" ground clearance. This altered the static control arm angle and while I thought I had originally allowed for this, it's likely that I made a mistake. So the new results are posted above by replacing the original table and graph. Sorry for the change.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #638, 01-24-2015 07:21 PM
      Here is a quick view of the roll center as generated by my current suspension configuration. Can anyone offer a layman's interpretation for the "suspension challenged" ie: me



Edit: To add a second view showing what is going on behind the wheel.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-24-2015).]

85-308 MSG #639, 01-24-2015 08:06 PM
      what software are you using? I think, likely knowing less than you (or anyone) about suspension.. that the next step is to see what happens when you redraw it with varying degrees of body roll and see how far laterally (and vertically) the roll centre moves at increasing body roll amounts.
If I understand the science in this, the less movement the better - in any direction - .. it is almost ike you start your dwg/design WITH body roll and try to minimize movement, and see where things end up at 'normal' (ie no roll situation).

As one book explains it, you don't need great geometry when the car is on the straight-away or at rest ( ) but you really want stability (as in minimal, sudden, roll centre changes!) when you're half-way thru the corner etc!
My unqualified 2 cents.... if you don't mind!
GP


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #640, 01-24-2015 08:26 PM
      I'm just using my 3D modeling program Rhinoceros. I am reading up on body roll at the moment and then I'll get to rolling the model and shoot some new suspension projection lines. I think the 18" high CG is a pretty good estimate. Thanks Blooz.



Bloozberry MSG #641, 01-25-2015 08:31 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Can anyone offer a layman's interpretation for the "suspension challenged" ie: me


Well, your static roll center is located at the point where the two lines that come up from the center of each tire patch intersect each other. At ride height (with both L&R suspensions level), those lines intersect at the chassis centerline at 9" below the center of gravity.

The next things you want to look at are camber change in roll, and roll center migration in roll. You might be able to do it longhand, but here's where a software program like Lotus Suspension Analyzer comes in handy. Try PM'ing Zac88GT to see if he'll lend a hand... he's helped me and fieroguru in the past.

Your configuration is going to produce some roll center migration, simply because it's unavoidable with a strut design. Whether it's going to be worse than the stock car or not, only an analysis can tell, though I'd say you'll find your roll center migration will be better than the stock Fiero's simply because at ride height, your lower control arms have a long way to go before they ever come close to becoming perpendicular to the strut. To get an appreciation for why it's an issue with a strut design, I'll paraphrase a discussion I had on page 13 of my build thread:

Bear in mind that the roll center location depends on the intersection of two lines, one perpendicular to the strut and the other through the lower control arm axis. Since in a strut-type suspension the strut angle doesn't move appreciably throughout the range of suspension travel, this leaves the change in angle of the control arm as the major variable responsible for the change in roll center location. In double wishbone style suspensions the rigid strut axis is replaced by moveable upper control arm which changes in angle as well as the lower control arm so it can be designed to hold the roll center location relatively constant. On the Chapman strut suspension, as the angle of the lower control arm approaches perpendicularity to the strut in jounce, the instantaneous center for that side of the suspension dives away towards infinity, taking the roll center on a nose dive and sending it out laterally as well. Do this for both sides and where the lines from the tire contact patches to their respective instantaneous centers intersect with each other, that's where the rear roll center will be located.

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 01-25-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #642, 01-25-2015 08:59 AM
      Thanks for the feedback Blooz. I'll digest what you typed.

Until then, here is the chassis rolled 6 degrees with the corresponding suspension geometry. This was a helluva lotta work.



Edit: to add a dimension x 2

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #643, 01-25-2015 09:52 AM
      You're still missing a dimension. You listed the height of the rear roll center (5.182") but not the lateral migration from the centerline. From the looks of things, it should be around 19.25".

[This message has been edited by Bloozberry (edited 01-25-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #644, 01-25-2015 09:53 AM
      Crap........ I may have kept my upper strut bearing in the camber plate rigid when I rolled the chassis. That may be why my outside wheel has such a large angle and my inside wheel has such a small angle. I think allowing the top of the strut to pivot would let the outside wheel pivot down and the inside wheel pivot upwards.

Back to the drawing board.

Edit: Fixed that. You were close Blooz

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #645, 01-25-2015 10:15 AM
      OK, so now if you add in the effect of the slight change in strut angles, you'll get the position of the rear roll center in the worst possible state. It'll change the roll center a bit, but not by much so it's looking pretty good. The stock '88 suspension at 6 degrees of body roll places the rear roll center at 82" from the centerline, and drops it 18.5" below static. Currently, your design shows a 23.2" lateral move and a 3.8" drop. Definitely a significant improvement over even an '88!

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #646, 01-25-2015 10:21 AM
      Thanks Blooz. I've gone back and looked at my struts and I did allow my struts to pivot. Because they are fixed to the spindles, the whole assembly pivoted about the ball joint center. My mistake is that I pivoted the whole camber plate as opposed to just the spherical bearings. I realized this when I turned my strut towers back on and saw that my camber plates were no longer sitting flat on the tower mounting surface.

I'll fix that and repost.

Edit to add: Is it correct to assume that since my struts did pivot as they should, I can glean from the drawing with 6 degree body roll that the camber in this worst case condition would be +3 degrees on the outboard wheel and -1.2 degrees on the inboard wheel. Is it also correct to assume that since both my struts are probably bottomed out at 6 degrees of body roll, that there is no need to calculate jounce and rebound conditions while rolling?

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-25-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #647, 01-25-2015 04:01 PM
      Well I managed to capture the results of Body Roll vs Camber. That is tricky data to collect as the fixed points of the control arm pivot and the strut upper bearing are now each following their own unique scribed circle about the CG as the body and everything attached to it moves.

So here are the results, again plotted along with stock '88 data from Blooz. The results seem to indicate that while there is camber change during body roll, it seems to be significantly less than the stock suspension. Am I interpreting this data correctly?



You may notice that the final data points at 6 degrees of body roll don't quite match the earlier drawing I posted of the rear suspension and body with wheels rolled at 6 degrees. This is possibly due to the fact that the earlier drawing was just that, a drawing rolled to 6 degrees and I tried to represent the suspension moving accordingly in one jump. It's likely that my drawing was wrong. The actual data I collected in 0.5 degree increments should be the more accurate results so please take the picture of the car rolled with angles dimensioned with a grain of salt. In the end, its just a pretty picture. I will try to redraw the rear view of the car using the data collected at 6 degrees of body roll.


wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #648, 01-25-2015 11:01 PM
      I have been watching this thread since it started .The drawings amaze me and your work is amazing .But one thing I would like to suggest is that you move the inboard pivot mount for your rear lower tie rod to the bolt that holds the control arm and get it off the arm .Since your outer mount is on the same plane as the ball joint , bolting the inner mount to the arm mount puts it on the same plane .No calculations involved , it eliminates all possibility of toe movements top to bottom .

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #649, 01-26-2015 07:17 AM
      Thanks wftb. I have considered what you are suggesting as it would make bump steer zero. The only problem is that I would have to move the rear inner control arm mount almost 2" further forward which would essentially have the rear rail of the control arm swept backwards slightly as opposed to swept forward as it is now. So I may have to move the rear inboard control arm bushing farther aft and mounting the tie rod on the forward side of the bushing. I just have to make sure the tie rod doesn't want to pass through the 1" diameter cross brace of the control arm. I am sure before I actually build the control arms, I'll modify the design to improve it as you have suggested.

wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #650, 01-26-2015 08:31 AM
      I think your bracket to keep the toe in place is the best idea I have seen yet for a strut based Fiero suspension .No matter what the final design of arm ends up being , that ball joint to tie rod bracket is an easy solution to a big problem .Keep up the great work .

[This message has been edited by wftb (edited 01-26-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #651, 01-26-2015 03:11 PM
      You got me thinking this morning wftb with your statement regarding the mounting location of the inboard end of the tie rod. I was sure I had it settled in my mind that my current arrangement for the tie rod and control arm would generate zero toe change so I went looking for my old drawing. As you can see, with the tie rod and control arm sharing a common point on the ball joint axis and the two pieces fixed together at the inboard end, the assembly is free to rotate together with no net effect on the ball joint / spindle, ie: no toe change. So the fixed end of the tie rod can mount anywhere on the control arm. Thanks for getting my brain in gear.



Bloozberry MSG #652, 01-26-2015 04:06 PM
      You are correct Yarmouth Fiero... your design does not require the toe link to be mounted to the chassis. If it were mounted to the chassis though, then it would have to be located where wtfb suggested to avoid introducing toe in bump.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #653, 01-27-2015 09:04 AM
      Well today is a snow day so perfect for concentrating on capturing the mind numbing yet important data of Body Roll vs Roll Center.

Here are the results of my suspension and stock data supplied by Blooz. Again, I am comparing my '85 style suspension against '88 style so take it with a grain of salt. It does show though my my suspension seems to have a much more stable Roll Center which should be a good thing.

This data is based on a CG of 18" but I think my final CG will be slighlty lower. This should further improve the stability of the car in hard cornering.



Bloozberry MSG #654, 01-27-2015 09:40 AM
      That's an amazing improvement over the '88! Nice work!

85-308 MSG #655, 01-27-2015 09:46 AM
      I tried to find a source for the Lotus Suspension Analysis software; a Brit source showed it on sale but (maybe my order was too small?) I couldn't get to the check out page; it just refused. Another that (yeah, yeah, I know...) had it for free - and there are lots of sites showing it for free.. ended up with the inevitable. Spent well over an hour cleaning up my computer from all the trash it installed and even before that, it 'looked like' I had to use the software on a shared server, ... somewhere... no thanks!

So.....
does anyone know where it can be obtained safely? I've sent a note to Lotus but no answer at least yet.
thx
GP


85-308 MSG #656, 01-27-2015 10:19 AM
      Not trying to sideswipe your thread, Yarmouth; just an update on the Lotus Suspension Software issue. I hope this might help others who get all excited about getting suspension design software like I was.... Maybe it will help someone avoid what I found out.
I DID get a reply from Lotus and they are the ONLY ones who sell it, and yes, as you would suspect from its capabilities and graphics, it is EXPensive... at least for a casual non-commercial user such as most of us would be..
So the seemingly innocuous Brit site I mentioned turned out thusly:
I went thru the process of ordering (this was pre-Lotus reply, mind you) and then on to the payment page.. again, not having ANY idea of what it was really worth.. so suspecting nothing at this time. The software site offered hundreds of various titles and 'looked' ok - yeah, whatever that means!?
Then I checked the payment page web address and while it did have the 's' for secure, it also had switched from 'softwareonlinechoice-dot-something' to 'WINEITUP' dot something.
"Wine it up"? A payment page? So the flags went up and I closed it and started checking it out and yes, it seems it might be a scam site thought to be based in Latvia or somewhere. NOT in Great Britain as I thought...
So, the old story: If it seems to be too good to be true, it probably is. The going rate for the real thing, by the way, is about $3150 per year for Shark alone. So that won't be happening anytime soon...
Back you you, Chet! /End Musical Interlude/ Again, apologies for this sidetrack. LMK if you want it edited or deleted... NP!!
GP

Edit to update actual location..

[This message has been edited by 85-308 (edited 01-27-2015).]

Bloozberry MSG #657, 01-27-2015 10:20 AM
      And from the previous page:
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:
Well I managed to capture the results of Body Roll vs Camber. The results seem to indicate that while there is camber change during body roll, it seems to be significantly less than the stock suspension. Am I interpreting this data correctly?




You have misinterpreted the data. Your camber gain is much better than the stock '88 Fiero. Take for example the extreme end at 6 degrees body roll where your plot says you have +2 degrees camber on the outside tire. That 2 degrees is measured from the angle of the tire patch to the ground. That means it's much closer to being flat than the '88's tire patch which is 3.75 degrees away from being flat on the ground. Of course the flatter the tire patch, the more traction you have, but there's more that comes into play than that because the tire also flexes.

As I mentioned the other day when we were talking, some of the modern mid engine cars like the Ford GT have an average 0.7:1 camber to roll ratio to account for these other factors. You can sample your data at various points and see where your ratio lands (it varies... and don't forget to take into account your -1 degree static camber!) So for example at 3.5 degrees body roll, your camber gain ratio is [3.5 degrees - (0.58 deg + 1.0 deg static)] / 3.5 deg = 0.55. At 6 degrees body roll it's 0.50:1. That decreasing trend is a characteristic of the Chapman strut design... as the lower control arm approaches perpendicularity with the strut, the camber gain will decrease to zero.


85-308 MSG #658, 01-27-2015 10:30 AM
      Just to show I CAN stay on topic:

what is the best way now to predict, and control, body roll? Shocks, springs and sway/roll bars? Basically I am wondering IF and WHEN you would get to (ie) 6 degrees of roll; if it might be less or it might be even more? Do you have a goal in mind for maximum roll amount?

What software are you using; is it any kind of suspension design software or are you cranking all this thru Autocad in 3D (wow you are quick if so).
Do you have plans on how the rear setup will affect (the design of) your front end setup; ie assuming it will be a narrower track and somewhat lower due to tire/wheel size, how will you thereby 'link' the two together? Just curious as to what's in the back of your mind on this.

GP


Bloozberry MSG #659, 01-27-2015 11:17 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by 85-308:
The going rate for the real thing, by the way, is about $3150 per year for Shark alone.


The best way is to find a friend who already has access to it and buy him a beer.

 
quote
Originally posted by 85-308:
what is the best way now to predict, and control, body roll? Shocks, springs and sway/roll bars?


I can try to answer this one. There are several spring rate calculators out there that suggest an appropriate spring rate after having entered a bunch of measurements and going through the interim step of calculating your wheel rate. They usually give end up suggesting a much softer riding car than an enthusiast would like, so take it with a grain of salt. Luckily coil springs can be had in any rate you want in 50 lb/in increments.

Controlling body roll then becomes choosing the correct sway bar (since they only stiffen the chassis in roll) usually through trial and error. It would be nice if there were suppliers who could make any physical configuration and torsional stiffness you'd like, but for the most part we have to settle for what we can make fit, or design the suspension in such a way as to minimize the need for sway bars altogether. Not great choices no matter which way you look at it.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #660, 01-27-2015 11:23 AM
      Thanks for all the comments guys. I just got back in from a couple hours of snow blowing so I need to let the feeling come back in my fingers. I have a lot of widows on my street needing to be dug out.

Back with more shortly.


TXOPIE (tx.opie@gmail.com) MSG #661, 01-27-2015 11:42 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Thanks for all the comments guys. I just got back in from a couple hours of snow blowing so I need to let the feeling come back in my fingers. I have a lot of widows on my street needing to be dug out.

Back with more shortly.


My Condolences...don't know how you northern guys do it!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #662, 01-27-2015 12:05 PM
      Thanks for the feed back Blooz. I've read not only your thread over and over but a tonne of info online. It can get pretty detailed but there are some good sources out there that the authors have really made an effort to be clear and concise. But the best education has been modeling the suspension geometry and indexing through the range of motion of the various analyses. Its quite eye opening and there were many times I went backward and repeated the motion just so convince myself. It is going to be very interesting to actually drive the car hard one day on a track or open space and get a feel for how it handles.

With regard to Lotus Suspension software 85-308, I am sure it is a powerful tool and would certainly make it easier to make on-the-fly suspension design changes and see the results immediately. Its pricy stuff though. For me, I am just using Rhino for my 3D design and then modeling the linkages as lines and the joints as points in space and then slowly adjusting them through a range of motion. I also have Inventor which can model motion and you define the characteristics of each linkage and joint. Unfortunately, I don't know the software well enough to use it properly. Atleast in Rhino, I put each instance of suspension analysis on different layers so that I can save them and turn them off or on at will so I can scroll through the motion. Its usually pretty clear if you made a mistake somewhere as the geometry suddenly moves in an uncharateristic way.

Overall, I am happy with what I have found in the analysis of my suspension. Just by keeping a few conditions like control arm angle and strut position in a desired range, its allowed the chassis drop and track width increase to add their respective improvements. Now I just need to built is properly so it doesn't fall apart or send me flying ass backwards across the highway one day. Thanks to Blooz for being patient answering my many off the wall questions day and night.

Edit typos.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-27-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #663, 01-27-2015 12:07 PM
      One good thing about the cold winters TXOPIE is that it drives the pesky Nova Scotia spiders and scorpions out of the garage for a few months a year.

Bloozberry MSG #664, 01-28-2015 07:31 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by 85-308:
I am wondering IF and WHEN you would get to (ie) 6 degrees of roll; if it might be less or it might be even more? Do you have a goal in mind for maximum roll amount?


I forgot to mention that as a starting point, the stock '84-'87 Fiero had a documented 3.5 degrees of body roll per lateral g, and it was capable of sustaining a steady state 0.82 g on a 100' diameter skid pad. Theoretically that translates into a steady state 2.9 degrees of body roll.

So if you consider the wider, grippier tires, better camber, and roll center location, Yarmouth Fiero's car should be able to generate better lateral grip than the stock 0.82 g. If everything else were equal, then you might expect to sustain up to a max of 3.5 degrees of body roll in steady state. The thing is, everything else isn't equal. He'll probably end up using stiffer springs, different roll bars, etc. which will lessen the degrees/g.

Sustainable lateral g's are less than what a typical car can generate temporarily though, so designing a suspension that still performs decently up to a max of 6 degrees body roll is a sound decision. (full disclosure: that's what I designed mine around too)


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #665, 01-28-2015 08:38 PM
      Thanks for that interesting factoid regarding body roll Blooze. I agree that it's certainly a good idea to design around the extreme, knowing that the actual operating conditions are well within that envelope. It just so happens that the 6 degrees of body roll put the tire almost perfectly against the notched out upper frame rail. That would also be the maximum travel of my coil over struts. It would certainly be an interesting exercise to push the car to the limits on a skid pad one day. Be sure to keep some contacts at the base Blooz. We may need 100 ft x 100 ft section of their tarmac one day.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-28-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #666, 01-28-2015 10:28 PM
      Keeping with the theme of rear suspension designs, I've been thinking about ways to install a rear sway bar should I decide to at some point. My goal is to not decrease ground clearance any further and also not interfere with the engine/ gearbox arrangement. Here is a possible solution where the sway bar passes through the rails of the engine cradle with the sway bar bushings fastened to the fwd side of the rear transverse cross member of the cradle. Just a thought........







85-308 MSG #667, 01-28-2015 10:33 PM
      just make the sleeves where they pass thru the frame the bushings as well?

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #668, 01-28-2015 10:45 PM
      I like that idea.

Thanks 85-308.

Edit to add..... something like this?

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 01-28-2015).]

85-308 MSG #669, 01-29-2015 06:42 AM
      You would need to come up with some sort of retaining caps both ends but it might look a bit cleaner plus 'sorta' keep dirt etc from accumulating in that sleeve anyway. The sway bar bushing is split of course so should be 'doable' - just slide it over the bar and press into the sleeve. And it gives you the widest spread on your bar support points so the arms do all the work (the centre portion will twist regardless). Only thing is being able to grease it.... hmmmm.

With my poly bushings I grooved them and drilled them so grease had a chance to get to the inner parts where the friction surfaces were; I guess you could do that from the inboard side then install a zerk fitting.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #670, 01-29-2015 02:59 PM
      85-308........



85-308 MSG #671, 01-29-2015 03:08 PM
      well isn't that clever...
were you planning on leaving the end open? If you prefer, you can get grease extension lines; they are used on mechanical equipment (fan shafts and bearings etc) all the time when 'far side' grease fittings aren't accessible, or readily accessible. If you wanted to close up that end of the frame, that is.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #672, 01-30-2015 08:09 AM
      My plan 85-308, is to make an aluminum cradle and typically we don't weld aluminum structures completely closed. Plus it will be going in the oven for powdercoating so I will leave some strategic drain/ vent holes in the structure. One of those holes will likely be in the end so I can get a socket in to fit the zerk and a grease gun periodically. I'll look at how close the body is going to be to the end of the cradle and if there is an issue, I'll perhaps locate the zerk and drain hole in the bottom of the bushing / cradle. Although 5" of ground clearance doesn't leave much room to get at it.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #673, 01-31-2015 09:35 AM
      Here are a few pictures of the rear control arm assembly with sway bar and hardware in place. While I'm waiting for my DOM tubing to arrive, I'll start building a jig to assemble the control arm for welding.









Bloozberry MSG #674, 01-31-2015 12:32 PM
      Bit by bit it's coming together... well, in the cybersphere anyways. It'll be nice to see some actual parts! (I remember being at exactly the same stage... it sucks after a while of not actually turning wrenches.)

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #675, 01-31-2015 02:06 PM
      You got that right Blooz. I've been tweeking the parts for the strut towers and lower frames rails all day while in a holding pattern for my welder. I really need to get better at it so I can do the welding myself. As soon as the DOM tubing is in I'll jump on the control arms. I have everything I need for the aluminum cradle as well. With any luck I'll be able to roll this thing into the sunlight once the snow is gone.

fieroguru MSG #676, 02-01-2015 09:13 AM
      Looking good!

The one suggestion is to add a triangulating link between the lower tab for the toe link and the bolt hole on the wheel bearing. Right now the bracket is double cantilevered and might flex some with excessive loading, adding a small bracket back to the outboard side of the wheel bearing mounting bolt would help stabilize the link more.

[This message has been edited by fieroguru (edited 02-01-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #677, 02-01-2015 12:19 PM
      Thanks Fieroguru. I agree that having that structure hanging out there is certainly a point of concern. Perhaps something like this would help. Just run a tap right through the spindle casting and fit a longer bearing bolt with a nut on the end to help support the toe bracket. The back side of the casting is quite flat so it might be a good place to mount the extra gusset.



seajai MSG #678, 02-01-2015 02:09 PM
      YF, I have a question. If you are going through the effort of building a new custom engine cradle and suspension, why try to integrate the stock 84-87 rear knuckle? It seems like a lot of thought and design has gone into just trying to eliminate the bump steer issue with the placement of the tie-rod connection points. Not to mention the extra gussets needed to keep it from flexing too much. If you are going to fabricate your own control arms, why not just use the 88 knuckle or even use one from a completely different IRS setup that doesn't rely on a tie rod end to keep the knuckle steady. You have what is essentially a blank canvas in the custom rear section of our car, and the skills to design and build a custom IRS. Something outside the box would compliment all the other mods you've done to this point and bump up the cool factor a whole bunch. Just my 2ยข on this.....this build is in my favs.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #679, 02-01-2015 03:25 PM
      Wow... good question Seajai. I'll try to answer this now otherwise I'm not going to be able to enjoy the game this afternoon.

First, I will be the first to admit there is a big difference between "drawing" suspensions and "designing" suspensions. I certainly will never claim I can do the later. While I have the ability to produce drawings that are both accurate and visually descriptive, I really don't have any suspension experience with regards to different arrangements, setups and analysis. I have been reading all I can on the subject but that isn't a replacement for experience. My plan originally was to stay with stock components. Then I started looking at semi custom control arms because of the change in track width that I wanted to incorporate in order to get the proper fit for the car body. As you may know, Blooz and I plan to use the same plug/ molds for our individual projects so that set some significant constraints. It then became apparent that it would be difficult to purchase control arms that suited my needs exactly so I started designing my own, based on my general engineering knowledge and the basic suspension knowledge I have slowly acquired. This brings me to where I am today. I guess you are correct in that I have missed an opportunity to start with a clean sheet of paper and come up with a unique and effective design. However, that is well outside my comfort zone on a project like this and like everything regarding this project, it's been a slow gradual developement to get where it is today as opposed to starting from scratch and building everything fresh from the ground up. I am hopeful that what I eventually build has reasonable performance and is safe to drive on the roads. Also, because I will eventually need to get this project inspected and certified to drive on the street, I have been conscious to use as many stock or off the shelf parts as possible, hoping to fly under the radar of the inspector when the day comes.

There are many very talented and experienced builders and fabricators on this site and its been a very positive experience to follow their builds and recieve their comments on my project. I have a great deal of respect for their abilities and knowledge.

I hope this answers your original question.

Edit: many typos

Edit : Go Pats

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-01-2015).]

seajai MSG #680, 02-01-2015 04:05 PM
      That makes sense to me, especially if you factor in inspection process. I'm gonna keep watching....so many good ideas...keeps my brain churning. Been thinking about doing a custom cradle for the Chrysler swap. Wish I had your cad skills, I took drafting in high school but that was in the paper and pencil days. Software is so expensive.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #681, 02-01-2015 04:16 PM
      Glad you'll keep following along Seajai. Looking forward to your continued input. I remember the paper and pencil days as well. Its amazing how far drafting has come, but there is nothing like a good hand drawn sketch to get an idea off the ground.

85-308 MSG #682, 02-01-2015 04:21 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Glad you'll keep following along Seajai. Looking forward to your continued input. I remember the paper and pencil days as well. Its amazing how far drafting has come, but there is nothing like a good hand drawn sketch to get an idea off the ground.


And ERASING!!! and erasing and erasing.... (The TRUE value of autocad LOL)


fieroguru MSG #683, 02-01-2015 06:04 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Thanks Fieroguru. I agree that having that structure hanging out there is certainly a point of concern. Perhaps something like this would help. Just run a tap right through the spindle casting and fit a longer bearing bolt with a nut on the end to help support the toe bracket. The back side of the casting is quite flat so it might be a good place to mount the extra gusset.


Yes, something like that. I was thinking about it being on the other side of the upright and bearing mounting flange, but the backside works too!


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #684, 02-02-2015 07:37 AM
      Yes, tonnes of erasing 85-308. I remember when we got an electric eraser. It was so high tech at the time. I still have it in my drafting table drawer..... as a conversation piece..... along with all the other manual drafting tools of the trade. Look at that plug..... and an all metal casing........that can't possibly meet code today ha-ha-ha



I figured you were thinking about the other side Fieroguru by the image you quoted. As I was drawing it though, it just seemed more natural to stay on the back side of the spindle.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #685, 02-02-2015 10:10 AM
      On the topic of outdated yet useful tools, anyone care to guess what this is called or used for? You can scale from the sheet of paper it is sitting on for the approximate size. Hint....... It is made from good old fashion lead btw.



davylong86 MSG #686, 02-02-2015 12:59 PM
      I'm stumped? Love the electric eraser, what a classic.

[This message has been edited by davylong86 (edited 02-02-2015).]

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #687, 02-02-2015 02:03 PM
      Hint : I am sure they were used by automotive designers years ago as well.

I just tried the eraser again... after probably 25 years... and it still works. I forgot that the eraser spins as opposed to vibrates back and forth like you would expect. And it's incredibly quiet still. Quality made in Dallas Texas.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-02-2015).]

85-308 MSG #688, 02-02-2015 02:22 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

On the topic of outdated yet useful tools, anyone care to guess what this is called or used for? You can scale from the sheet of paper it is sitting on for the approximate size. Hint....... It is made from good old fashion lead btw.


Looks pretty heavy.. was it used to hold multiple sheets of dwg paper or onionskin 'in register'?
Pretty sure it isn't an extra-marital device.. (ok, everyone say 'ewwwww' ...)

GP



Bloozberry MSG #689, 02-02-2015 03:15 PM
      What the heck? That electric eraser looks like it's made for some serious mistakes, LOL. The precursor to a shredder. What's it got... a 5 amp motor? At military college all we ever got was eraser bags... a little cloth bag filled with vinyl eraser powder that you rubbed over your drawings to erase hand and finger smudges.

As for that other thing? My guess is it's one half of a spot welder that you've mistaken for a drafting tool... well, either that or a cure for hemorrhoids.


85-308 MSG #690, 02-02-2015 03:21 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

... At military college all we ever got was eraser bags... a little cloth bag filled with vinyl eraser powder that you rubbed over your drawings to erase hand and finger smudges.


yeah! and we had to WALK to school. In the snow! Uphill. BOTH ways... ahhh, the GOOD ole days.....

I must have been important... I got an eraser that was battery powered! Well, ok, I got about twelve.. kept wearing them out....
No more guesses on that ... thing....


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #691, 02-02-2015 04:51 PM
      ha-ha-ha-ha. I love this chatter ha-ha-ha. Ya, that is a serious eraser for some serious mistakes. Not so long ago, we would loft ( draw ) a vessels lines plan ( 3 views ) full size on the loft floor which was painted white. From that, we could make full size templates for the longitudinal and transverse frames of the vessel. The lines were often drawn several times so there was alot of lines to erase and redraw. We'd plot vessels up to 65 ft in this manner. Now of course its all done on the computer and the parts are cut using a large cutting table using a plasma cutter or laser. Before these, it was all oxy-acetylene cutting heads. At the time, lofting was considered a high tech skill because before that, ship builders only used a scaled half model of the hull to build a full size vessel.

So the odd item I posted above was often used for the lofting exercise. Using a long plastic spline ( strip of plastic with a groove down one edge) the 'spline weights' or ducks as they were commonly called would be positioned alone the spline to hold the shape so the draft-person could trace the shape on to paper or a loft floor. It was a very slow and tedious process but allowed you to develope a keen eye for a fair line. I am sure that automotive and even aviation designers used a similar set of tools.





Looking back, I am sure making the weights from lead meant that they didn't leave rust stains on the paper..... but the lead on our hands is probably why most boat builders went mad...mad I say....


Neils88 (nellerin@dal.ca) MSG #692, 02-02-2015 08:30 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

On the topic of outdated yet useful tools, anyone care to guess what this is called or used for? You can scale from the sheet of paper it is sitting on for the approximate size. Hint....... It is made from good old fashion lead btw.



Spline weights! I studied yacht design...I have a set myself. Anyone have a planimeter kicking around?


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #693, 02-02-2015 08:44 PM
      You got it Neils88. I think there are still enough bits and pieces of a planimeter in the back of the drawer but I never had the patients to use one accurately.

Bloozberry MSG #694, 02-02-2015 09:05 PM
      Learn something new everyday. Useless... but new.

zkhennings MSG #695, 02-03-2015 02:34 PM
      I would maybe suggest getting 88 rear knuckles and emulating the 88 rear suspension, Blooz should have all the suspension pivot locations in his CAD drawings.

This would have benefits such as utilizing the stock 88 calipers with ebrake and using 12 or 13" brake rotors, and improved suspension design.

If you stick with the stock 84-87 knuckles then you are forced to use stock size solid rear rotors if you want a parking brake, and you still have a backwards front end suspension on the back of your 355 Ferrari....

Food for thought!

I think you could easily get it done

If it were myself I would make the lateral links the same length and parallel to have no rear toe movement, and then you just need to decide antisquat % based off ride height trailing arm angle and length. I think it would be easier in the end than the current plan, and less unsprung weight.

[This message has been edited by zkhennings (edited 02-03-2015).]

85-308 MSG #696, 02-03-2015 02:51 PM
      There are lots of rear brake options aside from the stock fiero ones; what ARE your plans for rear brakes? A possibility is the 05 Chev Uplander rear caliper; c/w built-in e brake; made to stop a much heavier vehicle.... very readily available. An adapter would be needed but that would be the case for any non-stock caliper....
I was toying with the idea of replicating the 88 rear myself, but the main issue is reducing or eliminating that annoying bumpsteer, and you are working at that... so it won't really matter which way you go now, I think.

i have some of the uplander calipers if you need any size info. They are available all over for $25 at wreckers; for cores or measuring etc.
GP


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #697, 02-03-2015 03:23 PM
      Rear brakes? See page 11.

85-308 MSG #698, 02-03-2015 06:14 PM
      those spot calipers are acceptable? I don't know; just asking. Last time I checked here, in ON, they weren't. Maybe they just didn't have a certain certification then, I have no idea.
Decided to go with some OEM type that won't get an argument, at least to get thru the safety check....


Bloozberry MSG #699, 02-03-2015 07:11 PM
      Even if they weren't, I think it would be pretty easy to adapt a small hydraulic caliper such as one from a motorcycle or ATV. The small master cylinder could be attached to a push rod on the parking brake handle. You'd need to find a caliper that was of a split design so you could adapt the thickness to your rotor.

Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #700, 02-21-2015 09:26 PM
      Well today I finally got my new aluminum engine cradle welded together. The main rails are 3" x 4" x 1/4" HSS and tapered down to 2" x 4" x 1/4" at the forward bushings. The transverse members are 2" x 3" x 3/16" HSS and are only tacked in place to hold everything together. Their final location will be determined by the requirements of the engine / gearbox mounts and it will be a while before I get to that stage. The rear cradle supports still need to be drilled to accept the poly bushings. The lugs for the control arms are only sitting in place for the photos. Again, their exact location will be determined once the new control arms are finished. They have been drilled oversize to accept SS inserts which have not been pressed in yet. This will prevent the control arm bolts from wearing the holes in the aluminum lugs. The control arm bushings have been fabricated from 2" sch 80 seamless SS pipe. I designed the bushings to be slightly longer than stock to suit the increased dimensions on the control arm structure. I bought two sets of poly bushings and cut them shorter so that I could install two bushings, one from each side. I had new bushing inner sleaves machined to suit the new total poly bushing length.

I haven't weighed the new cradle yet but will try to get that done so I can compare it to the weight of the stock cradle.

I appologize for the poor quality of the photos. My email is down so I had to text them to myself.









[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 02-21-2015).]

fierogt28 MSG #701, 02-22-2015 03:59 AM
      Hi Yarmouth,

Hey...that's nice work.

Nice to see people doing / fabricating nice stuff for these types of cars. It seem like there is no end in
what imagination can do with a project car. The fiero seems to be the only popular platform that can
be done with many body kits, suspension upgrades, and engine swaps, and so on.

I have no plan on doing custom work besides maybe an engine swap in the future, but I guess I will leave
Blooze and yourself to do re-engineering fiero projects here in the maritimes.

Cheers


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #702, 02-22-2015 05:38 AM
      Thanks fierogt28. It's certainly alot of fun to be able to design a modification and then build it. But you are right when you say " It seems like there is no end ......" It was only a few pages back I was documenting the process of stretching my stock cradle. Now I have taken it in a completely different direction.

There are many interesting builds on this site and all the builders offer their unique variation regarding concept and execution. It's very interesting to watch them all develop.

My next step will be to fabricate my rear control arms and then weld up the last of the structure in my engine bay. Then I may even be able to set the rear of the chassis back on its own wheels. Its been a long-g-g-g-g time since that last happened.

Thanks for following along.


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #703, 02-22-2015 03:15 PM
      I installed the cradle bushings and then fitted the cradle into the chassis. It was a perfect fit and the cradle bolts slid right into place.









Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #704, 02-22-2015 04:24 PM
      I weighed my stock cradle at 48 lbs and my new aluminum cradle at 44 lbs. As a side note, my stock cradle had a 3" stretch so the weight may seem slightly higher than others have recorded.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #705, 02-23-2015 05:44 AM
      Great job on the cradle! I too made my own, however it comes in at a whopping 66 pounds. Perhaps I should now make one in aluminum. Decisions, decisions.





Rickady88GT (rjkmfam@sbcglobal.net) MSG #706, 02-25-2015 12:33 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Well today I finally got my new aluminum engine cradle welded together. The main rails are 3" x 4" x 1/4" HSS and tapered down to 2" x 4" x 1/4" at the forward bushings. The transverse members are 2" x 3" x 3/16" HSS and are only tacked in place to hold everything together. Their final location will be determined by the requirements of the engine / gearbox mounts and it will be a while before I get to that stage. The rear cradle supports still need to be drilled to accept the poly bushings. The lugs for the control arms are only sitting in place for the photos. Again, their exact location will be determined once the new control arms are finished. They have been drilled oversize to accept SS inserts which have not been pressed in yet. This will prevent the control arm bolts from wearing the holes in the aluminum lugs. The control arm bushings have been fabricated from 2" sch 80 seamless SS pipe. I designed the bushings to be slightly longer than stock to suit the increased dimensions on the control arm structure. I bought two sets of poly bushings and cut them shorter so that I could install two bushings, one from each side. I had new bushing inner sleaves machined to suit the new total poly bushing length.

I haven't weighed the new cradle yet but will try to get that done so I can compare it to the weight of the stock cradle.

I appologize for the poor quality of the photos. My email is down so I had to text them to myself.













WOW, I realy like what you have done. I wish I had this for my LS4 swap.
I have a GM aluminum cradle, and did (at the time) compare it to a stock Fiero cradle and the difference was a lot in %. But after the LS4 Fiero cradle, the aluminum advantage was even better.

Good work


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #707, 02-25-2015 07:12 AM
      Thanks Lunatic. Nice strong cradle you fabricated. I suspect mine will get heavier once I start adding engine supports and some cross bracing. Its bare bones at the moment but will allow me to install my control arms and set up the rear suspension.

Thanks as well Rickady88GT, I am hopeful the cradle will be a suitable compliment to my eventual LS1 or SBC... or whatever I end up with


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #708, 03-03-2015 04:56 PM
      The cradle is gorgeous. I wish i could TIG aluminum...



Bob


kennn (kbrooksarchitect@cox.net) MSG #709, 03-04-2015 11:57 AM
      HHS aluminum, eh? Is that high structural strength and not high strength steel? Just curious.

Ken



Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #710, 03-04-2015 02:07 PM
      Hi Ken

In this instance, I use the term HSS in reference to Hollow Structural Section. While the term usually refers to steel sections in the construction industry, we also use it for aluminum hollow sections in the marine industry, whether they be square, rectangular, circular or oval in section produced by extrusion, rolling or formed and welded . They are considered structure shapes as opposed to pipes or tubing which are designed to carry fluids and gasses.

Thanks for asking. I know I should be more clear when using acronyms.

Edit to add: with regard to the aluminum material used, all HSS is 6061-T6 and all plate is 5083 / 5086 H116.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 03-04-2015).]

fierogt28 MSG #711, 03-13-2015 11:59 PM
      Graham, Nice fabrication for your new cradle.

Will you be painting the new cradle or leaving it bare aluminum??



kennn (kbrooksarchitect@cox.net) MSG #712, 03-14-2015 11:03 AM
      Thanks for the edification of terminology. Very informative. Sorry for the late reply, been awhile since I've been on PFF.

Ken

 
quote
Originally posted by Yarmouth Fiero:

Hi Ken

In this instance, I use the term HSS in reference to Hollow Structural Section. While the term usually refers to steel sections in the construction industry, we also use it for aluminum hollow sections in the marine industry, whether they be square, rectangular, circular or oval in section produced by extrusion, rolling or formed and welded . They are considered structure shapes as opposed to pipes or tubing which are designed to carry fluids and gasses.

Thanks for asking. I know I should be more clear when using acronyms.

Edit to add: with regard to the aluminum material used, all HSS is 6061-T6 and all plate is 5083 / 5086 H116.





Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #713, 03-16-2015 07:36 AM
      Thanks guys. My plans for the cradle finish fierogt28 is to powdercoat either black or gold nugget like the roll bars. That won't happen until I have an engine ready to mount.

No problem kennn. I only get on here a couple times a month myself now.

Spent the weekend mocking up the driver side control arm. Still need the ends cut to length and then prep'd for welding. The bushings are laying to the left. The tubing is all steel, seamless 1 1/4" and 1" with a 0.120" wall thickness. The bushings are 316 stainless steel seamless sch 40 pipe.



85-308 MSG #714, 03-16-2015 09:12 AM
      Looking very nice! Looks like two good, tight-radius bends on the piece on the right side; what do you have for a bender?
What thickness are you making your balljoint mounting plate. This looks very substantially heavier than the stock piece!

What was your final 'overlength' ie how much longer did you have to make the control arms?
GP


Yarmouth Fiero (im_gman@hotmail.com) MSG #715, 03-16-2015 09:34 AM
      Hi 85-308

Thanks. The tubing was bent on our hydraulic tubing bender. Its a sweet machine. Just type in the angle and press go. We do a lot of hydraulic tubing at our shipyard. The die radius is 2 x tube dia. so 2 1/2" radius for the 1 1/4" tubing.

The plate for the ball joint is 3/16". Its thicker than stock but once you cut the 1 5/8" hole for the ball joint, there won't be much material left and I didn't want the control arm tubing wrapping all the way around the plate due to clearance issues with the spindle and the brake rotor.





Edit to add: The control arm length from bushing to ball joint axis is 13 3/4". Off the top of my head, I don't recall what the stock length is but its got to be close to 12". I tried to keep the length as close to stock as possible to minimize the effects on the suspension geometry. I obtained my increased track width by making my cradle wider.

[This message has been edited by Yarmouth Fiero (edited 03-16-2015).]

seajai MSG #716, 05-03-2015 09:10 PM
      Any updates?

Burning Oil MSG #717, 09-17-2015 06:37 PM
      Wow thats a long read. I had seen this post back in 2013 and liked what you did with the frame. I just sat down a read the whole thing again.
I love your fab skills and it helps tremendously to have the different machinery/metal working tools at your disposal like you have. I have been collecting parts
for a couple of years and am now gearing up to do something with them. Won't bore you with the details at this time. It is crazy though that
the car I have built in my mind is almost the same thing you are doing, even down to the pulley/belt drive train, but I have plans to do it with a chain drive from a
4x4 transfer case.
I see the last request for an update was a few months ago, so I hope your still going on this. Would love to see the progress.



seajai MSG #718, 09-21-2015 11:58 PM
      Graham has moved his build off Pennock's and on to his own website: http://ns355.weebly.com/

Car-Lo MSG #719, 09-22-2015 01:53 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by seajai:

Graham has moved his build off Pennock's and on to his own website: http://ns355.weebly.com/


WOW, first Bloozberry and now Yarmouth what's going on, what's the story they where having so much fun here on PFF sharing there awesome builds to the world.
I know Bloozberry was having trouble with Madclury's bad preaching , but he's gone and Yarmouth had no trouble with anyone?




Stubby79 MSG #720, 09-23-2015 06:01 AM
      After looking at all the work you've put in to it...I think it might have been easier for you to build a whole new chassis!

Burning Oil MSG #721, 09-27-2015 01:20 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by seajai:

Graham has moved his build off Pennock's and on to his own website: http://ns355.weebly.com/


Thank you. I must have my email notifications turned off? Just saw your post.