Ecotec, Fastback, T-Top Build.
Topic started by: Lunatic, Date: 06-29-2014 08:15 AM
Original thread: http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum3/HTML/000148.html


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #1, 06-29-2014 08:15 AM
      Hello fellow Fiero enthusiasts and welcome to my build.

In my quest for a project, I decided on the Fiero. My car is a base 84 model notchback with no options, Duke and automatic transmission. Yuck, I know. However, I'm going to change all that! Follow along as I swap in a 2.2 litre normally aspirated Ecotec (with F23 manual transmission), install a T-Top roof panel and add a fastback. I'll also build a custom cradle and utilize 88 suspension components. I'm sure there's more but we'll cross that bridge when I get there.

Before I start with the pictures, I'd like to thank a few people first.
-My place of work. For providing me the opportunity to use the CNC laser, brake, etc.
-Bloozberry - For providing me with rear suspension components and his awesome and detailed drawings!
-rourke_87_T-Top - For proving me with a few hard-to-find items and the 88 back half from his parts car.
-X-Thumpr-X- For selling me a T-Top space frame.
-WFTB - For the rear spoiler and cool parts.
-cam-a-lot - For some miscellaneous parts.
-My wife and her understanding of my hobby.

Anyhow, let's start with the car.
Here's what it looked like when I first brought it home in the fall of 2013. Nothing special and just a plain Jane 84.


Shortly after bringing the car home, I removed all the body work. Where to start? Let's build a simple cradle, shall we?
Okay guys, here's my take on a "simple", square tube cradle that I whipped up. It's only tacked but fits in the car like a glove.
Since I'm going to install an L61 2.2 Ecotec and matching F23 transaxle, I wanted something I knew was square and strong so I could have some place to mount my drive line to.
Now, the design changed slightly. I built it with the 84 lower control arms in mind. However, I've now decided to use the 88 knuckles and suspension instead.
This cradle is heavier then stock but it's also stronger. Besides, the one on my car was a little too crusty for my liking.






Now, for a "test fit".






[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 06-02-2016).]

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #2, 06-29-2014 10:07 AM
      Cool build.

Bob


Tony Kania MSG #3, 06-29-2014 11:01 AM
      Good luck with you build!

You Canadians make me smile. Not sure why, but there seem to be a lot of great ones.

Now, on with the show...


Bloozberry MSG #4, 06-29-2014 01:19 PM
      Look at all that room between the rails! No friggin' fair!

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #5, 06-30-2014 08:51 AM
      I've decided to remove the rear sheet metal from my car. The previous own decided to cover the rust with Bondo. While it looked good, really good actually, I just wouldn't have any part of it. So, off it came.


With that out of the way, I could visualize mounting points. Also, I've decided to shave the firewall in order to install a nice aluminum checker plate panel. I'll also relocate the hinges while I'm at it.
For the record, I'll be installing this engine "straight up" versus the factory tilt of 10° like GM did.


Here's my take on mounting the Ecotec and F23 to the custom cradle.
Note: the Ecotec powered (2003) Cavalier mounting brackets are all in the wrong place for my cradle. But, they can be adapted quite easily onto the stock Fiero cradle with minimal effort. I actually had it mounted on the stock cradle. Since I chose to run the 88 rear suspension, it was just easier to make a new cradle with the mounts where I wanted them. So, I chose to use (2003) Grand Am Ecotec/F23 mounting brackets. They're just in a better location for me.


































Onto the lower engine mount. I chose an Energy Suspension poly mount (Part number 3.1108G) used for GM RWD transmissions for my lower mount.
Here's how I went about doing it.

I used the stock Ecotec lower dog bone mount and modified it.














Here's the engine and transmission sitting on it's new mounts.










[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-27-2014).]

rourke_87_T-Top (rourke_r@hotmail.com) MSG #6, 06-30-2014 10:44 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:


-Notch 8 - For proving me with a few hard-to-find items.




Hello Shayne, that's my username on the G.T. Fiero forum. 8 throttle positions on locomotive.


cam-a-lot MSG #7, 06-30-2014 11:26 AM
      Looks great Shayne!! Maybe I will pay some shady mob enforcers to kidnap you, lock you in a garage my my shitty swap, and threaten to cut off a finger each week until the engine and tranny mounts are replaced with something like this... Looks awesome bud!! You are an artist

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #8, 07-02-2014 07:33 PM
      Since I will not be keeping the power steering pump on the engine, I decided to draw up a delete plate and cut it on the laser in aluminum.
Option 1


Option 2


I think I like this one best.


wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #9, 07-03-2014 11:10 PM
      Nice build , good to see all the progress .If you want to get really fancy with your PS pump block off plate you can get an OEM one .The 06-07 2.2 eco's came with one from the factory .Any car of those years with 2.2 and electric power steering I think .Newer versions of the 2.2 have the PS pump mount removed completely from the cylinder head .

foxgapfiero (hoaglanm@ptd.net) MSG #10, 07-04-2014 07:35 AM
      Keeping an eye on your build, I would really like to do the same swap into my 84 Convertible. I think I can do the mechanicals, but wireing is not something I think I can get past. Nice thing about my car It is a manual trans, no AC, no cruise type of car. A lot less stuff to hook up. I have been driving my friends 09 Cobalt around for a few days while he is on vacation and like the feel of the 5 speed, 2.2 combination, but maybe a turbo would be nice?



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #11, 07-04-2014 05:02 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by RCR:

Cool build.

Bob


Thanks Bob. Enjoy the show. I'll try and make weekly progress on it.


 
quote
Originally posted by Tony Kania:

Good luck with you build!

You Canadians make me smile. Not sure why, but there seem to be a lot of great ones.

Now, on with the show...


Thanks Tony. Pennock's is full of great builds from all over the world. Mine is no where near as elaborate as some but I'm having a lot of fun working on it.


 
quote
Originally posted by Bloozberry:

Look at all that room between the rails! No friggin' fair!


Dave, I might just have a little more room under the hood than you do! LOL. Mine is going to be real easy to work on.


 
quote
Originally posted by rourke_87_T-Top:


Hello Shayne, that's my username on the G.T. Fiero forum. 8 throttle positions on locomotive.


Hey Rob. I didn't realize that you had a different name on this forum. Now I know and I changed it as seen above.


 
quote
Originally posted by cam-a-lot:

Looks great Shayne!! Maybe I will pay some shady mob enforcers to kidnap you, lock you in a garage my my shitty swap, and threaten to cut off a finger each week until the engine and tranny mounts are replaced with something like this... Looks awesome bud!! You are an artist


Thanks Pete. I like to do nice work as often as possible. No one like poor quality workmanship. I'll look at your swap one of these fine days and give you my opinion. This will buy me some time before the mob shows up.


 
quote
Originally posted by wftb:

Nice build , good to see all the progress .If you want to get really fancy with your PS pump block off plate you can get an OEM one .The 06-07 2.2 eco's came with one from the factory .Any car of those years with 2.2 and electric power steering I think .Newer versions of the 2.2 have the PS pump mount removed completely from the cylinder head .


Thanks Steve. Progress is steady. It's sometimes difficult to balance riding the motorcycle, life, work, etc. I'm doing the best I can with the time that I have. The power steering pump was something I whipped up at work. It's a little more personal then just buying and installing a factory block-off plate.


 
quote
Originally posted by foxgapfiero:

Keeping an eye on your build, I would really like to do the same swap into my 84 Convertible. I think I can do the mechanicals, but wireing is not something I think I can get past. Nice thing about my car It is a manual trans, no AC, no cruise type of car. A lot less stuff to hook up. I have been driving my friends 09 Cobalt around for a few days while he is on vacation and like the feel of the 5 speed, 2.2 combination, but maybe a turbo would be nice?



Wiring is easy. If you follow this thread, I'll post the wiring in time. And yes, some nice detailed schematics as well. Enjoy the Cobalt. Before long, you'll have to give it back! I too would like a turbo but for now, I'll just try and get it together first. Then the power adder can come in play.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-27-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #12, 07-07-2014 06:49 PM
      This next part of my build thread is for anyone interested in swapping the 88 front suspension into the 84-87 chassis. This is not quite a bolt-in affair but it's pretty easy to do. Some frame notching, welding, elongation of a few holes and a little patience is all it takes. As you can see, at this point of the build, I have the cradle bolted into place using all eight bolt hole locations. (Six were stock while the two rear mounting locations were fabricated). I left the locating stud intact and measured side to side and fore & aft.
Note: Before you begin, you'll need to find a complete 88 front cross member assembly. The control arms, steering rack (and intermediate shaft), sway bar, spindles, calipers, etc are 88 specific and are different than the 84-87 parts.

Start by removing all the old parts. Steering rack, sway bar, brake lines, etc. No pics, you get the idea.

Here's the notch of the frame rail that has to be cut in order to clear the 88 front cross member.
Note: Leave additional clearance for the coolant tubes! I had to go in later on and notch for this additional clearance!


Here are the elongated holes that I had made to the crossmember. Notice the locating pin?




Here you can see the 88 cross member in place after notching.


Now, the gap is a little large. This is due because the offending area on the 84-87 frame. Remember, the back portion of the lower control arm mounts to the bracketry associated in that area. I wanted to fill in the gap and make it look nicer, almost factory. So, I created "caps" for both sides using 14 gauge metal.






Here's the passenger side cap installed. Notice the smaller gap(s) and the control arm clearance.




There are a few more area's that must be addressed. After removing the factory bracketry, you can clearly see the back two mounting locations are floating in the air.


I simply took some 10 gauge steel and formed up a "U" channel, then welded it in. It's around 3" long, and 2" tall. Now, you can also see the step the 88 cross member has. I just added a small plate, of the appropriate thickness, to take up the extra gap. I then drilled a 1/2" hole through the "U" channel and secured the assembly with a 1/2"-13 x 1 1/2" bolt, nut and washers.






Don't mind the corroded and ugly looking coolant lines! They'll be addressed.


The front mounting locations line up almost perfectly with the rear factory lower rad saddle bolt holes! A little slotting with the die grinder, and voila.






That's it, that's all. Reinstall all the 88 specific parts and you're good to go.
Note: The 88 coolant tubes are a little different than the 84-87 units. I will use the 88 tubes as that's what I have. (After I repair the kink from the previous owner first).

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-13-2014).]

Dennis LaGrua (dlagrua@comcast.net) MSG #13, 07-07-2014 08:10 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by foxgapfiero:

Keeping an eye on your build, I would really like to do the same swap into my 84 Convertible. I think I can do the mechanicals, but wireing is not something I think I can get past. Nice thing about my car It is a manual trans, no AC, no cruise type of car. A lot less stuff to hook up. I have been driving my friends 09 Cobalt around for a few days while he is on vacation and like the feel of the 5 speed, 2.2 combination, but maybe a turbo would be nice?



Stand alone "plug n play" harnesses with PCM's are available for the Ecotec. My friends son has the supercharged version of the engine in his Cobalt and he claims that it really moves. This build thread is really incredible and complex. That's why I stick to the easier swaps for now.



RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #14, 07-08-2014 06:45 AM
      Although your endcaps look good, I think you made a mistake.



The area between the cross member and the frame rail needs to be open for the coolant tube to clear (unless you were planning on doing something different or the angle of the picture is misleading).

Bob


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #15, 07-13-2014 06:48 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Dennis LaGrua:


Stand alone "plug n play" harnesses with PCM's are available for the Ecotec. My friends son has the supercharged version of the engine in his Cobalt and he claims that it really moves. This build thread is really incredible and complex. That's why I stick to the easier swaps for now.


In this case, I'll be using the stock GM PCM part number 12576162. HP Tuner's supports it and there are a few options within the parameter's that allow for fuel enrichment (boost applications) and such. Besides, GM spent a lot of time making this work and if it's good enough for them, it's good enough for me! LOL. So far, this has been an easy swap. I'm just doing a few other things along the way.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #16, 07-13-2014 07:00 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by RCR:

Although your endcaps look good, I think you made a mistake.



The area between the cross member and the frame rail needs to be open for the coolant tube to clear (unless you were planning on doing something different or the angle of the picture is misleading).

Bob


Indeed RCR you are correct. Since I never removed the coolant tubes from the 88 parts car, they were already off, I didn't know how "exactly" they were installed. The 84-87 cars had them snake through the control arm and therefore were mounted differently. So I just figured that I could mount them as high as possible. Well, I just worked on the car this weekend and I didn't really like the way the coolant tubes "hung down". Mind you, it was only like an inch but still. Onto the modifications. Thanks Bob for causing me more work. LOL.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #17, 07-13-2014 07:14 AM
      Okay, lets try to protect the coolant tubes and raise them higher within the frame.
Here's the offending area.


Now, if you look at this view, you can see there is a semi-circle relief in the factory crossmember. Let us use this as a reference point and make a notch to match this.


Without showing you all the cutting, grinding and welding, I ended up with this.








Add a little primer.




After some paint and undercoat, we have this.


Here's the additional clearance with the crossmember installed.








I can still push the coolant tubes and have them almost touch the inner wheel well. They are slightly pulled out for the photos.


[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-13-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #18, 07-13-2014 07:22 AM
      Here are some parts that went off for sandblasting and powder coating.


And the end result.


Now, I'll have to order some greasable poly bushings and new ball joints, etc.


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #19, 07-13-2014 09:23 AM
     
 
quote
Indeed RCR you are correct. ... Thanks Bob for causing me more work. LOL.


I did something similar on mine, so I know it's better to find out earlier.

Nice job on the repair.



Bob


BabyEating Dingo MSG #20, 07-13-2014 04:38 PM
      Loving this build. I'm a huge fan of the 2.2 Ecotec. Super reliable, easy to work on, and puts out lots of power for how small and light it is. I don't have the skills to pull this swap off, but one day...

Neils88 (nellerin@dal.ca) MSG #21, 07-13-2014 05:51 PM
      Love the way this is coming together!

ericjon262 MSG #22, 07-13-2014 11:04 PM
      do you have plans or a cut guide for your cradle you built? I've been thinking about doing the same thing with my car.



Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #23, 07-14-2014 11:11 PM
      Vote for this to go to the Construction Zone.

Nice work.

HAGO!


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #24, 07-15-2014 06:35 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by ericjon262:

do you have plans or a cut guide for your cradle you built? I've been thinking about doing the same thing with my car.



I'll be working on the car this weekend. I'll get the measurements for you then.

 
quote
Originally posted by Sage:

Vote for this to go to the Construction Zone.

Nice work.

HAGO!


Thanks Tedd. I still have a long way to go before it gets to that status. But I'll keep at it.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #25, 07-18-2014 08:50 AM
      In hopes of finding a "nice" rad saddle, and not finding one, I decided to just make one.
I whipped this up, cut on the laser and formed on the brake. Just for something to do of course. Lol.
Ooh, aah, stainless too! No crusty crap here any more.


















As you can see, the small amount of clearance. I made this rad saddle as wide as possible. (Think larger radiator.)










[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-18-2014).]

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #26, 07-18-2014 09:16 AM
      That's some very nice work. I wish I had access to that kind of equipment. Sweet...

Bob


2.5 MSG #27, 07-18-2014 10:17 AM
      Nice job displaying your work. I am thinking you could easily sell some things, like cradles and rad supports for example....

ericjon262 MSG #28, 07-18-2014 01:17 PM
      I get more interested in this thread every time I check back, good work!

htexans1 (bd5av8r@yahoo.com) MSG #29, 07-18-2014 06:00 PM
      Why not reproduce your cradles radiator mounts and such for sale, you'd sell enough to make your fiero twice or more.

You could become the "Rodney Dickman" for cradles

make different mounts for 4, 6 and V8s.... welded painted and ready for usage. would make life a LOT easier it you have a rusted cradle and such.

Give it a thought!!


ericjon262 MSG #30, 07-19-2014 02:01 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by htexans1:

Why not reproduce your cradles radiator mounts and such for sale, you'd sell enough to make your fiero twice or more.

You could become the "Rodney Dickman" for cradles

make different mounts for 4, 6 and V8s.... welded painted and ready for usage. would make life a LOT easier it you have a rusted cradle and such.

Give it a thought!!


not a bad idea, but, it'd be hard/expensive to ship, also, as much as they would probably cost, must of the fiero community would probably say no way.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #31, 07-20-2014 06:56 AM
      It was a busy weekend with assembly and some disassembly. With having the engine and trans exactly where I want it, I yanked the driveline out. Now I can tear down and inspect the engine and trans adding new components, gaskets and seals where needed. I removed the fuel tank and filler neck. I also removed all the offending areas on the firewall too! I've decided to shave the firewall and add checker plate to cover it. In addition, I'll relocate the hinges to the underside of the rear window ledge and relocate the C500 as well. Since my car was a no option, plane Jane, it was just easier to install both doors that had all the power windows, mirrors, locks and the GT skirting. I cleaned the nice dash from the parts car and installed it. And, I pulled anything related to the automatic transmission and installed the clutch pedal, wiring and short throw shifter.






[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-20-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #32, 07-20-2014 07:02 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by ericjon262:

do you have plans or a cut guide for your cradle you built? I've been thinking about doing the same thing with my car.



I'll draw up a sketch for you with dimensions on it. For now, you can check out the following pictures.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #33, 07-20-2014 07:05 AM
      Here's a few pictures of the cradle with nothing in the way.
























[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-20-2014).]

ericjon262 MSG #34, 07-20-2014 11:38 AM
      I would recommend capping the end tubes on your cradle to prevent dirt, bugs, road debris, water ect. from getting in there, and possibly causing a corrosion issue from the inside out.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #35, 07-20-2014 12:48 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by ericjon262:

I would recommend capping the end tubes on your cradle to prevent dirt, bugs, road debris, water ect. from getting in there, and possibly causing a corrosion issue from the inside out.


Indeed I will. The next time I fire up the welder I'll cap the ends as well as add the mounting point for the trailing arms. Then it's off for powdercoat.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-21-2014).]

lateFormula MSG #36, 07-25-2014 07:54 PM
      I finally took the time to read through this post and check out all the pictures. I gotta say Shayne that you have got some seriously good welding skills. I've seen a lot of posts in this forum with people showing off things they have fabricated for their cars, and very very few demonstrate the welding abilities that you have shown here.

fieroguru MSG #37, 07-25-2014 09:00 PM
      Looking good!

Just make sure you install sleeves where the cradle bolts pass through. That is the only way they will stay tight and not collapse the tube.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #38, 07-27-2014 07:54 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by lateFormula:

I finally took the time to read through this post and check out all the pictures. I gotta say Shayne that you have got some seriously good welding skills. I've seen a lot of posts in this forum with people showing off things they have fabricated for their cars, and very very few demonstrate the welding abilities that you have shown here.


Thank you the nice words and for taking the time to read this thread. I enjoy my hobby and welding goes hand-in-hand with this hobby. Good welds are a must for strength. I too have seen a few pictures of poor looking weldments. With just looking at those pictures, one can quickly see the possible failure. All I can say is, "set up your welder properly and practice". There are many tutorials online for this. If one cannot weld, at least tack it and have a friend come over that can weld.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #39, 07-27-2014 07:59 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:

Looking good!

Just make sure you install sleeves where the cradle bolts pass through. That is the only way they will stay tight and not collapse the tube.


Nothing gets past you, does it Paul? Lol. I agree with this statement and I'm one step ahead of you. I've already done this. For those following this reply, here's what fieroguru is talking about.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-27-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #40, 07-27-2014 08:22 AM
      This weekend I met a fellow member, cam-a-lot. Very nice guy. He gave me some 88 specific parts that I'm sure I'll make use of. It was nice meeting you, your family and your Fiero. I hope we meet again my friend.

Not too much happened with my build as I spent some time cleaning the carb's and installing a jet kit on my ageing GSXR-1100. But I did find time to share with you some small things. Since I'm going to relocate the trunk hinges to the underside of the window, I wanted a little extra support in that area. The thinner metal that GM used under the window may (or may not) be strong enough to support the deck lid. So, here's a 14 gauge metal strip that I'll attach either by 1/4" rivets or small plug-type welds. The damn camera makes the rust look real bad on my car. It's not as bad as it looks and I'll take care of that before I install this reinforcement.









I also want a little bling in the engine compartment. So what better way than with some aluminum checker plate. (Loosely installed for the pictures).












Oh, I was at a salvage yard not to far from me and I found a Fiero in the yard. I ended up with a few little parts and here's one piece I installed.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-03-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #41, 07-30-2014 08:37 PM
      I had some gauges laying around for a while and I decided they'd look nice in the Fiero. So I made some plates in order to house them. I used aluminum but in retrospect I think brushed stainless steel might look nicer.













I didn't like how low the speedo and tach sat in the housing. So I raised them up a bit.


[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-03-2014).]

ericjon262 MSG #42, 07-31-2014 12:27 AM
      you could brush the aluminum and most wouldn't know the difference.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #43, 08-03-2014 07:19 AM
      In this segment, I'll take you through the steps of installing a T-Top roof in the Fiero. Don't mind the mess in the garage, it's not usually like this!

Here's a few notes before we begin.
-This is not an official "how-to-by-the-book" manual but rather my version of doing a T-Top conversion.
-I will use RTV black silicone, PL Premium bonding adhesive, seam sealer and 1/4" rivets to secure it all together.
-I picked up an 87 space frame (Thanks Adam) that had the T-Top option. Therefore, I will be reusing all of the components from that car.

Anyhow,on to the show.

Here's the unsuspecting donor. I just cut the roof off at the "A" and "B" pillars after removing the glass.




After removal, you'll have to separate the components.








Take your measurements. Note: This cut is actually curved!




Cut the roof off the recipient.










Do a test fit.






Paint the freshly cut metal to prevent rust.


Actually, paint all brackets and braces to prevent rust.


I used PL Premium as a bonding agent on the "H" frame. It's not seen here but there was also silicone applied to any area's that might allow water penetration.
Here, the reinforcing header is glued and riveted prior to installing the "H" frame.


"H" frame glued.




"H" frame secured with 1/4" rivets.




Here are the braces that I still need to install.


Minus the few other braces that must be installed, here's one picture to show the end result.


This is a real easy conversion to do and it only took a few hours to get to this point. Minimal hand tools are required. I have the advantage here because I used an air-powered tool that allows me install 1/4" rivets easily.


That's all for now. I hope you enjoyed this segment. More documentation, and yes, pictures to follow. I'll address the missing braces and weather strip installation.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #44, 08-03-2014 07:49 AM
      As I said at the beginning, I'm looking to make this into a fast back car. I've been scouring the net looking for a "reasonably priced" fast back parts car. Well, there are too many people that think these cars are worth their weight in gold. Well I got lucky. Luckier than most as I found a complete, almost untouched 87 GT in a local salvage yard. I was told I could buy the whole car for $600, or buy only what I needed. So, for a paltry $250, I bought "everything" I could use from this parts car! I bought: the fast back section, rear deck lid, both vents, both tail lights, both bumpers, rocker and door mouldings, all the round trim, door locks, carpet, almost all the interior, seats and seat belts, all the clips, nuts and bolts.

With a little elbow grease, and some cleaning products, these parts will look good.




x-thumpr-x (xthumprx@fieronut.me) MSG #45, 08-03-2014 10:24 PM
      Hope you got the decklid vent retainers to that are bolted to the strut towers. Another member bought a complete car and forgot to take them off when he scrapped the frame. DOH!
Did you get the rear harness for the tail lights too? They are different then the notchback tail lights.

One day I'll need to go for a drive out your way, busy right now with another swap underway


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #46, 08-04-2014 08:02 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by x-thumpr-x:

Hope you got the decklid vent retainers to that are bolted to the strut towers.
Did you get the rear harness for the tail lights too?
One day I'll need to go for a drive out your way, busy right now with another swap underway


Hey Adam, you still lurk on this forum? Lol. I got "everything" related to the fast back, including the vent retainers and wiring. I ended up with the back half of Rob's 88 and I'm going to use that instead. I have found the 88 vent retainers from another member and I'll be picking those up hopefully within the week. So in reality, I'd like to find a nicer rear deck lid and then I have everything to finish this conversion. You're welcome to pop in any time. If you do, can you bring the missing T-Top roof molding?

Another swap you say? Whatcha working on?

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-04-2014).]

Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #47, 08-08-2014 01:34 PM
      I love threads like this. Thanks for taking the time to post all the photos and descriptions.

Your welds look fantastic. Are you using MIG or TIG?


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #48, 08-09-2014 08:34 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Quad Raider:

I love threads like this. Thanks for taking the time to post all the photos and descriptions.

Your welds look fantastic. Are you using MIG or TIG?


I'm glad you like this build, I do too! It's my pleasure to show photo's and descriptions of what I've done along the way. This is good for reference, work logs, and/or appraisals.

In the front suspension swap and the rear cradle, all the welds were made using a MIG welder. I'm using a 230 volt Lincoln with Autoweld shielding gas. The rad saddle was TIG welded as it's more precise.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #49, 08-09-2014 08:53 AM
      Only a little progress this weekend. I installed the under-the-window-ledge brace.




While I had my carpet out, I noticed the floor drain plugs were non existent. So I made four new ones out of galvanized steel.


While I was under the car, I also noticed the brace below the fuel tank was very ugly. No problem, I made one of those too!


If I have any spare time this weekend, I'll try to finish off the welding on the rear cradle. I need to cap the ends, install the trailing arm brackets and finalize the rear sway bar mounting points. Then a quick sand blast and it's off to powder coat.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #50, 08-12-2014 07:31 PM
      After working all day, there simply isn't enough time to get too much done. I did manage to minimize the Cavalier wiring harness down to what I need. I'll be using the BCM as well as it has some features that I'd like to utilize. A/C input for one. The Cavalier ignition also has PASSLOCK II integrated into it. I'll only keep this in place until I remove it using HP Tuners.




Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #51, 08-15-2014 05:16 PM
      Okay, back to the cradle we go. I capped the ends, added two stiffener braces and made mounting points for the trailing arms.




I will machine down a spacer and install it between the two points shown. It'll help to spread the load.


















Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #52, 08-15-2014 05:23 PM
      Man, those welds are spectacular.

How did you come up with the dimensions for your homemade cradle? I spend a lot of time "shopping" in my local salvage yard and often see aluminum cradles from later-model cars just lying on the ground. Always makes me wonder if someone has tried to adapt one to a Fiero, but what you've done here has me thinking that making one from scratch would be better.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #53, 08-15-2014 08:36 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Quad Raider:

Man, those welds are spectacular.

How did you come up with the dimensions for your homemade cradle? I spend a lot of time "shopping" in my local salvage yard and often see aluminum cradles from later-model cars just lying on the ground. Always makes me wonder if someone has tried to adapt one to a Fiero, but what you've done here has me thinking that making one from scratch would be better.


I too was like you. Looking for a nice cradle, and lower radiator support, etcetera. (I live in the rust-belt area of Ontario, Canada though.) So, it was just easier to make new parts. This way, I could put braces, mounting points, etc where I wanted them. My cradle is a little heavier than a stock piece. However, it's more rigid and my Ecotec driveline is lighter, so it all balances out in the end. Also, on my cradle, with the engine and transmission mounted, I can get at "everything" and there's nothing in the way. It took a little bit of planning but I like the way it turned out. I can drop my starter, alternator, A/C compressor and such very easily. I suppose I could've made it (the cradle) in 6061 aluminum tubing, maybe on the next one!

Another member on here, Ericjon262, had also inquired about a "cut list" of materials used. I'm glad to share this information freely. However, I'd like to reinstall the cradle, and the fast back prior to handing out this information. I know it all fits but I'd rather the community be their own judge. Plus, I'll upload the CAD files (of the 88 suspension and sway bar brackets that I made) to the net. Then all one has to do is make their own engine and transmission mounts. It's not difficult of a job to build a cradle.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-31-2014).]

FieroCustom (borchard.j.m@gmail.com) MSG #54, 08-17-2014 11:10 AM
      Bookmarked. I'll be watching this one.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #55, 08-20-2014 05:37 AM
      Some of you may be wondering the weight of this cradle. Well, I decided to weigh the stock 88 cradle and mine. So I'll share the results.
PS-This 88 cradle that I used for comparison is damaged! The car was hit in the side. The only thing missing from the crossmember is the steel plate where the engine mount was.

Cheap bathroom scale with two piece's of 2" x 2" used as a platform. Zeroed out after placing the tubing onto.


88 Cradle on the scale.


88 bare cradle weight = 50 lbs.


My cradle on the same scale.


My cradle weight = 66 lbs.


So as you can see, my cradle is 16 lbs heavier than a stock 88 piece. However, with the lighter weight of the Ecotec and F23 versus the stock 2.5 Iron Duke and automatic transmission, I'm probably close to the same weight overall. Perhaps a little lighter, which is good, but nothing serious enough to upset the balance of the Fiero.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-20-2014).]

Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #56, 08-20-2014 10:02 AM
      Your cradle outweighs the stock cradle by 16 actual pounds, and several tons in coolness factor.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #57, 08-24-2014 08:45 AM
      I was busy dealing with the estate and didn't get too much done on the Fiero. I did manage to repair two holes in the floor, install the floor plugs and lay down the jute backing.











I picked up some 18" wheels too! I'll need bigger wheels to clear the 13" rotors that I'm going to install.






Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #58, 08-30-2014 02:34 PM
      Since I'm trying hard to remove all the crusty parts from my car, I decided a new rear bumper would be in order. So, here it is. 1/8" aluminum.

















And now I'll clean up some light scale with a wire wheel, add zinc primer and add paint. All this in preparation for the 88 rear sheet metal. It was just easier to do it this way. Now I'll have the 88 specific strut towers.

















[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-31-2014).]

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #59, 08-30-2014 03:41 PM
      Looks like great work.

Bob


fieroguru MSG #60, 08-30-2014 06:22 PM
      Many years from now this car is going to really confuse someone... 84-87 Vin, but 88 suspension and 88 rear strut towers.

Keep up the good work!


akademikjeanius MSG #61, 09-06-2014 01:54 AM
      So awesome....I bow to your machining and welding abilities.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #62, 09-06-2014 07:32 AM
      Thanks for the compliments guys. You all make this worth while!

Before I built my custom cradle, I had the driveline sitting on the stock, although slightly modified 84 cradle. I chose to add these photo's for those interested in doing the Ecotec and F23 swap using a stock, modified cradle.

Here's the driveline sitting in place.






Here's the 2003 Cavalier F23 mounts with poly installed.


Simple steel plate that can be formed and shaped at home.


Which gives you this.










Old front spreader removed and new 2"x2" square tube welded in further forward.


Cradle now looks like this.




And here's what it used to look like.

















lateFormula MSG #63, 09-06-2014 12:44 PM
      Lunatic, I just read through page two of your build and a couple pictures you posted about the cradle and the suspension mounting points caught my attention. Given the obvious skills you have with machining and welding, have you considered making your own trailing and lateral links for the rear suspension? I have owned an 88 for a long time, and something I have always wished for is a set of those suspension links that would be made with square tubing and be more rigid than the OE parts. I am speaking of the following two parts:



I have always though that links similar to what Hotchkis makes would be cool:


I would think that you could make a simple jig to hold the two ends, and then weld in some square tubing between the two ends. The ends would be the same ID and width as the OE ones so that standard bushings for the Fiero could be used.

If perchance you do something like this, I would be very interested in buying a set from you!


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #64, 09-09-2014 05:12 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by lateFormula:

Lunatic, I just read through page two of your build and a couple pictures you posted about the cradle and the suspension mounting points caught my attention. Given the obvious skills you have with machining and welding, have you considered making your own trailing and lateral links for the rear suspension? I have owned an 88 for a long time, and something I have always wished for is a set of those suspension links that would be made with square tubing and be more rigid than the OE parts.
I have always though that links similar to what Hotchkis makes would be cool:
I would think that you could make a simple jig to hold the two ends, and then weld in some square tubing between the two ends. The ends would be the same ID and width as the OE ones so that standard bushings for the Fiero could be used.

If perchance you do something like this, I would be very interested in buying a set from you!


Thanks for the reply. Indeed, I could replicate and modify the parts that you've shown and come up with an equally nice component for the Fiero. I've also posted another option. The below items can be bought fairly inexpensively and they provide adjustability which is nice as it can compensate for different offset wheels and such. I like both options and I'll keep you informed as to what route I go with.


cam-a-lot MSG #65, 09-09-2014 01:58 PM
      SHH!!! Don't tell Lunatic that with all the work he has put into this rusty old beast, he could have bought a rust free 88 Chassis down south and had it shipped home by now... LOL

Crazy bastard! Nice work, you are definitely an artist



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #66, 09-20-2014 08:38 AM
      After setting the 88 rear sheet metal in place, I decided to install the fastback and check for fitment. It looked good and I was getting slightly excited. Since the 88 sheet metal I got came from a car that was hit, I simply cannot get some mounting pads to line up. After some double checking of measurement's, it appears as though the rear sheet metal is too damaged to use. It looked okay but upon further inspection, I just opted to use the other sheet metal from an 87 that I had. No biggie, I'll get to it when I get some time.






On a side note, not Fiero related, I dabbled on something else. I had transversely mounted a Northstar (and Getrag) into a VW Golf last year. Yes, in the back! Mid-engine baby.


But as time goes by and you find things in your travels, changes happen. I cut up a Porsche 914 and kept some useful parts for a rainy day. Well it rained and here's the start of the Northstar to 914 transaxle (901) adapter. I drew up the adapter and made a template out of 1/8" aluminum. This was necessary to check the fit, squareness and concentricity before I commit to the 3/4" 6061 aluminum plate. Yes, this is a spare Northstar that I used for the mock-up, don't mind the mess! Oh, and all this because I want to mount the Northstar longitudinally!










This adapter clears the Northstar water log.


Since the template was thin, I had to stiffen it up with angle. All in order to get it perfectly flat so the dial indicator could it's job. So far, it's within tolerance. (Which the factory calls out for 0.00" - 0.010")








These transaxle's are made of magnesium and are very light. Don't mind the mild scale build up. It's only in the mock-up stages now anyway.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 10-11-2014).]

Larryinkc MSG #67, 09-20-2014 10:53 AM
      I have an 88 also and would like to improve the rear links.

Where can I find the parts to make a set of these?

 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:


Thanks for the reply. Indeed, I could replicate and modify the parts that you've shown and come up with an equally nice component for the Fiero. I've also posted another option. The below items can be bought fairly inexpensively and they provide adjustability which is nice as it can compensate for different offset wheels and such. I like both options and I'll keep you informed as to what route I go with.




Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #68, 09-21-2014 07:09 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Larryinkc:

I have an 88 also and would like to improve the rear links.

Where can I find the parts to make a set of these?



Dude, go into any speed shop and ask for "swage tubes". They're are many options available, steel, aluminum, etc. You buy the tubes and the ends depending on the application. You can get rubber, poly or heim-joint ends too. Sometimes it's just easier to measure your old stuff and take those measurements with you to the speed shop and look through the catalogue. There are many options available.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 11-15-2014).]

el_roy1985 MSG #69, 09-21-2014 11:55 AM
      Some excellent work you've done. Look forward to further progress. Also looking forward to those blueprints of your cradle. Would be very helpful with my LSJ swap for my 84.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #70, 10-11-2014 05:49 PM
      Okay, I have a little time to work on the car again. Since the 88 rear sheet metal was twisted too badly, I decided to use the 87 rear end that I had. It's in about the same shape and since it had rust, I just had to remove it. Follow along as I do the repair.

Here's the 87 hulk.


As you can see what the problem is.


Remove the offending area and you're left with this.


Start with some 16 gauge sheet metal and put a 90° edge into it.


Cut it on the band saw.




Tack it in place.


Note: I made my patches longer than necessary! I did this because the frame rails still need to be welded in. I'll cut the excess off with the plasma cutter once the frame rails are fully installed.


Upper inner rail being made.






Trial fit.


Partially welded in.






I do need to tweak the outer frame rails but that's for another day.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 10-13-2014).]

ericjon262 MSG #71, 10-11-2014 06:03 PM
      Looking good!

bubbajoexxx (bubbajoexx@sympatico.ca) MSG #72, 10-11-2014 07:37 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

After setting the 88 rear sheet metal in place, I decided to install the fastback and check for fitment. It looked good and I was getting slightly excited. Since the 88 sheet metal I got came from a car that was hit, I simply cannot get some mounting pads to line up. After some double checking of measurement's, it appears as though the rear sheet metal is too damaged to use. It looked okay but upon further inspection, I just opted to use the other sheet metal from an 87 that I had. No biggie, I'll get to it when I get some time.






On a side note, not Fiero related, I dabbled on something else. I had transversely mounted a Northstar (and Getrag) into a VW Golf last year. Yes, in the back! Mid-engine baby.


But as time goes by and you find things in your travels, changes happen. I cut up a Porsche 914 and kept some useful parts for a rainy day. Well it rained and here's the start of the Northstar to 914 transaxle (901) adapter. I drew up the adapter and made a template out of 1/8" aluminum. This was necessary to check the fit, squareness and concentricity before I commit to the 3/4" 6061 aluminum plate. Yes, this is a spare Northstar that I used for the mock-up, don't mind the mess! Oh, and all this because I want to mount the Northstar longitudinally!










This adapter clears the Northstar water log.


Since the template was thin, I had to stiffen it up with angle. All in order to get it perfectly flat so the dial indicator could it's job. So far, it's within tolerance. (Which the factory calls out for 0.00" - 0.010")








These transaxle's are made of magnesium and are very light. Don't mind the mild scale build up. It's only in the mock-up stages now anyway.




remember there is a 1/8 x1/8 register lip on the inside of the adaptor to register the transaxle if it is not there you will be in for some nasty repares


bubbajoexxx (bubbajoexx@sympatico.ca) MSG #73, 10-11-2014 07:47 PM
      the register is where the red a line is this is what locates the trans axle to the engine a must to have

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #74, 10-13-2014 08:38 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by bubbajoexxx:

The register is where the red "A" line is. This is what locates the transaxle to the engine. A must have.


Thanks Joe. Nothing gets by you, does it? Lol. I'll change the drawing to reflect that recommendation.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #75, 10-13-2014 08:43 AM
      I know some of you are interested in building your own cradle and need some guidance and measurements.
This drawing needs to be finished. I need to add the lateral end link brackets, trailing arm brackets, sway bar brackets and end caps.


Note: This cradle that I designed was made for "my application". I like the position of the engine, transaxle, suspension mounting points and exhaust routing.
I'm offering a basic material cut-list drawing for those interested in making their own cradle. Feel free to modify it as you see fit for "your application".

I'll work on a more detailed drawing with better measurements and different views, etc.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #76, 10-14-2014 05:41 AM
      Here's a few more dimensions.











Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #77, 10-26-2014 10:19 AM
      I had some free time so I dabbled on the car for a while.
Frame rails dollied straight and sandblasted.




Primed and painted the sheet metal behind the frame rails.


Primed and painted inside the frame rails.


A few 1/4" holes rosette welded and the right side is coming along.










As you can see, it's not 100% finished yet. I'll get to it next time.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #78, 11-02-2014 07:00 AM
      Here's a few more pictures of the frame rail installation and fabrication. Most of the "big stuff" is done and I've decided to use a good zinc spray and coat all the bare metal. I still have to apply seam sealer and paint the primer before it gets too cold. But that's for another day, Man the time flies, it's already November.

Passenger side.






Driver side.












zuki709 MSG #79, 11-02-2014 08:22 AM
      all i can say is wow.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #80, 11-16-2014 06:11 AM
      Sometimes it's difficult to find time to work on projects as there's always something else that needs you attention. I did manage to get a little garage time though. I smeared some sealer over the joints that needed to be protected.










I also installed the rear bumper for the last time.








To finish off the day, I added the T-top bracing and fit the glass in. I think it looks good and it seems to be centered quite nicely.






I'll make this prettier once I get to that point.








I scrapped a car and kept the seats. These Mustang GT (83-84) halo seats actually fit in the Fiero. The Fiero seat tracks could also be utilized. I set one in place and seeing the halo head rest out the back window is kind of neat. These are taller and I'm not sure I’m going to use them. I was just curious and had to try.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 11-16-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #81, 12-19-2014 05:29 PM
      Here's the area that the fuel filler tube goes through. As you can clearly see, we have some missing metal. Lets take care of that.

Open area that needs to be filled.


Here's the piece after a hammer and dolly session and a trip through the sand blaster. I'll weld in a patch over the small hole next time.


Looking better and getting there.


Battery tray was damaged and here's what I could salvage. I'll add more metal after I make a nice template.




While I was in the back of the car, I removed all traces of the original dog bone mount bracket.


I also added 1/4" rivets to pin the shock towers to the frame rail.


Sealed the holes in the firewall from the removal of the deck lid hinges.




I made a template to contour the left side of the firewall where the filler tube meets.


Transfer the line to the checker plate panel.


Cut on the transferred line.


If your measurements and template were good, then adhere the checker plate in place. Voila.






My friend is a member in a local car club in the area. I decided to fire up Solidworks and make some custom vanity plates for the guy's there. I made them out of 16 gauge steel and everyone loved them.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 12-19-2014).]

TXOPIE (tx.opie@gmail.com) MSG #82, 12-19-2014 05:43 PM
      Thanks for sharing the build...enjoying it.

jmbishop (jmbishop05@aol.com) MSG #83, 12-19-2014 07:39 PM
     
I really dislike diamond plate. Not saying you shouldn't use it if you like it, I just never found it appealing.


ericjon262 MSG #84, 12-19-2014 09:37 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by jmbishop:
I really dislike diamond plate. Not saying you shouldn't use it if you like it, I just never found it appealing.


I have to agree here, it's just too flashy, but it is your car.


fieroguru MSG #85, 12-20-2014 12:14 AM
      I didn't mind the look when I did the same thing with my SBC/Getrag Fiero, but I found that over time the aluminum caught fibers from my wash sponge/drying towels, would scuff easily, and lose its mirror finish. So since that first time, I haven't used it again, but instead use smooth sheet metal now.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #86, 12-20-2014 08:02 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by TXOPIE:

Thanks for sharing the build...enjoying it.

Thank you for viewing along. It's my pleasure to share with such an awesome community.


 
quote
Originally posted by jmbishop:
I really dislike diamond plate. Not saying you shouldn't use it if you like it, I just never found it appealing.

 
quote
Originally posted by ericjon262:
I have to agree here, it's just too flashy, but it is your car.

I'm in agreement with you guys. This is not a high-end build nor am I building a show car with "bling". Like many of you, I simply want a nice, clean engine bay and I thought the checker plate would easily cover up the ugly underneath. It will get coated/painted as to not stand out quite as much.


 
quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:
I didn't mind the look when I did the same thing with my SBC/Getrag Fiero, but I found that over time the aluminum caught fibers from my wash sponge/drying towels, would scuff easily, and lose its mirror finish. So since that first time, I haven't used it again, but instead use smooth sheet metal now.

I too liked the look of your blue car. You are correct in saying the mirror finish does scuff quite easily and loses shine over time. I once had a checker plate tool box that was coated with an anti-slip, flat black texture finish. I really liked that and that's what I'd like to do to the engine bay. It looks great and hides small imperfections. In the end, I'd like the Ecotec to look it's best and be surrounded by a clean engine bay.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #87, 12-21-2014 06:06 PM
      While scouring the local classifieds, I found two Ecotec engines close to me. Both are the same L61 family. One being 03, the other 05. I was looking for a good core engine for future mods but now I have two. One had internal mechanical damage, from what the previous owner said. It sure looks like it as the valve cover is off and the cam followers are damaged. Probably a timing chain let go. I'll investigate later on. The other engine ran in the fall apparently. Again, I'll dissect them both and see what I've got. As I said, I only want a good core. Besides, getting these saved me the hassle of going to the salvage yard and pulling my own. Don't mind the snow, they were laid on their side for the ride home.





[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 12-21-2014).]

cam-a-lot MSG #88, 12-21-2014 06:15 PM
      I spy with my little eye a hopeless pack rat

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #89, 12-21-2014 06:20 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by cam-a-lot:

I spy with my little eye a hopeless pack rat


I beg to differ. I see it as being a preservationist.


Luke (lukehanus@yahoo.com) MSG #90, 12-21-2014 08:46 PM
      Preservationist....I like that.

Pete should no longer be surprised at the amount of cr@p Fiero owners amass he's getting there himself....lol


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #91, 12-22-2014 08:37 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

There are a few more area's that must be addressed. After removing the factory bracketry, you can clearly see the back two mounting locations are floating in the air.




The bracket that's already been removed from here already has the bolt hole in the right location fore/aft and left/right... it's just at the wrong height. It's easier to section the stock bracket to raise the mounting pad to the right location then weld it back together. That way you also retain the stock captured nut and don't have to deal with loose hardware.


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #92, 12-22-2014 08:40 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

In hopes of finding a "nice" rad saddle, and not finding one, I decided to just make one.
I whipped this up, cut on the laser and formed on the brake. Just for something to do of course. Lol.
Ooh, aah, stainless too! No crusty crap here any more.





That's a really swift product.
I think you could sell a few of those... especially if they bolt in and work with stock radiator and mounts, while also allowing room for a specific larger aftermarket radiator. Obviously, you can't design for all aftermarket radiators...


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #93, 12-22-2014 09:12 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:


Thanks for the reply. Indeed, I could replicate and modify the parts that you've shown and come up with an equally nice component for the Fiero. I've also posted another option. The below items can be bought fairly inexpensively and they provide adjustability which is nice as it can compensate for different offset wheels and such. I like both options and I'll keep you informed as to what route I go with.


Did you make those solid rod ends yourself? I've been looking for similar parts to meet some specific dimensions.
My personal opinion is nothing but spherical bearings for the '88 lateral links.

Also, are you going to raise the inner pivots relative to stock?


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #94, 12-22-2014 09:14 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:
A few 1/4" holes rosette welded and the right side is coming along.





Are those the '84-'87 strut towers or the '88 ones?


fieroguru MSG #95, 12-22-2014 05:00 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Will:
Are those the '84-'87 strut towers or the '88 ones?


Those are the 84-87 strut towers. You can see where the three separate oval wahsers were, plus the geometry of the center hole isn't the same as the 88's. Here is an 88:


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #96, 12-22-2014 08:28 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

There are a few more area's that must be addressed. After removing the factory bracketry, you can clearly see the back two mounting locations are floating in the air.


The bracket that's already been removed from here already has the bolt hole in the right location fore/aft and left/right... it's just at the wrong height. It's easier to section the stock bracket to raise the mounting pad to the right location then weld it back together. That way you also retain the stock captured nut and don't have to deal with loose hardware.


I knew it was close but I never took the time to see how close. There you go folks, great information for all those that are looking to do the 88 crossmember swap. Thanks Will for pointing out this alternative.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 12-23-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #97, 12-23-2014 05:28 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

In hopes of finding a "nice" rad saddle, and not finding one, I decided to just make one.
I whipped this up, cut on the laser and formed on the brake. Just for something to do of course. Lol.
Ooh, aah, stainless too! No crusty crap here any more.


That's a really swift product.
I think you could sell a few of those... especially if they bolt in and work with stock radiator and mounts, while also allowing room for a specific larger aftermarket radiator. Obviously, you can't design for all aftermarket radiators...


I've had a several PM's about this rad saddle that I made. So it appears as though there's interest in this product. It was fairly close to the original that I used to measure from with a few minor variations. With having said that, it fits the stock rad. I did make mine as wide as possible to accommodate a larger rad if needed. I was thinking of making one more and offering it to a member on here that could install, evaluate and see how well it works. Once I receive reply from said member, I'd make any changes to the final product and then offer them in the mall.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #98, 12-23-2014 05:30 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:
Thanks for the reply. Indeed, I could replicate and modify the parts that you've shown and come up with an equally nice component for the Fiero. I've also posted another option. The below items can be bought fairly inexpensively and they provide adjustability which is nice as it can compensate for different offset wheels and such. I like both options and I'll keep you informed as to what route I go with.

Did you make those solid rod ends yourself? I've been looking for similar parts to meet some specific dimensions.
My personal opinion is nothing but spherical bearings for the '88 lateral links.

Also, are you going to raise the inner pivots relative to stock?


When I started my build, I only had 84 parts to use. Soon after, I found the 88 specific uprights locally. I then had to find stock lateral links and radius rods since I never had them to measure from. A guy I know is also building a Fiero. These are the links from his car. They're made by Bicknell Racing in St. Catherines Ontario, Canada and I'm not sure if he bought the ends like that or made them.

Their part numbers: 13170 for the long bar, 13090 for the rear lateral bar, 13080 for the front lateral bar.

I was going to get a set but since I already bought stock 88 pieces, I'll probably just use them. I also have spherical joints, swage tubes and the special seals. I think I'll save them for now.

I did not raise the inner pivots and they are still in the stock location. I now see the benefit of raising the mounting points and I will probably do this as my cradle hasn't yet been powder coated.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 12-23-2014).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #99, 12-23-2014 05:32 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:
A few 1/4" holes rosette welded and the right side is coming along.



Are those the '84-'87 strut towers or the '88 ones?


Yes, these are the 84-87 strut towers. I did have the back half of an 88 but it was hit in the side. I couldn't get it to line up with any of my measurements as it wasn't square any more. I went back to the 84-87 style. I'll be making coil overs for the rear and move the top of the strut to where the 88's are. I'll also make a nice cover for it so it looks factory.

Note: To those swapping in an 88 cradle into an 84-87 chassis. Here are the proper 88 strut mounting point locations.

When looking "DOWN" from the top of the 84-87 engine bay, and standing behind the rear of the car facing forward, the new 88 strut shaft centreline location will be:

INWARD (47.625mm) or 1.875" (1 7/8")
FORWARD (30.1625mm) or 1.1875" (1 3/16")

These measurements are "per strut". You'll have to move both struts!


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #100, 12-26-2014 10:55 AM
      I work out of a small garage and space is sometimes at a premium. Now with two additional Ecotec engines on the floor, I need to make a little room. As you know, I have one complete, running L61 Ecotec and two mystery core engines. I want to install one as a stock runner and enjoy it for a while as-is. The next one, I'd like to have a little more power and I'd like to freshen it up.

Mystery engine "B". Notice the loose timing chain?


Rusted cylinder walls and water jackets damaged in three places!


When a timing chain slips on the interference Ecotec, bad things happen!










Holes in all four pistons from valve stem parts dancing around the combustion chamber.


Mystery engine "A".
This one turned over a little tight but it's way better shape internally than the other one




Ringland on cylinder one was damaged/missing.


All 16 valves look okay.


In all, I have one good core and I can salvage a few parts (intake, sensors, oil pan, etc) from the "parts engine".

Note: Early Ecotec engines had a poorly designed cam chain tensioner. Do yourself a favour and get the "upgraded" version. They're cheap and will prevent damage like shown above.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 12-26-2014).]

wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #101, 12-26-2014 05:55 PM
      Funny thing about the tensioner , it took 3 designs to get it right .I get mine from crate engine depot , they do not have any of the old ones in stock .With a local dealer , you never know if you might end up with the older design .

ericjon262 MSG #102, 12-26-2014 10:17 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

When I started my build, I only had 84 parts to use. Soon after, I found the 88 specific uprights locally. I then had to find stock lateral links and radius rods since I never had them to measure from. A guy I know is also building a Fiero. These are the links from his car. They're made by Bicknell Racing in St. Catherines Ontario, Canada and I'm not sure if he bought the ends like that or made them.

Their part numbers: 13170 for the long bar, 13090 for the rear lateral bar, 13080 for the front lateral bar.

I was going to get a set but since I already bought stock 88 pieces, I'll probably just use them. I also have spherical joints, swage tubes and the special seals. I think I'll save them for now.

I did not raise the inner pivots and they are still in the stock location. I now see the benefit of raising the mounting points and I will probably do this as my cradle hasn't yet been powder coated.




is the guy you know this guy?

http://coppertopautosports.blogspot.com/


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #103, 12-27-2014 10:13 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by ericjon262:
is the guy you know this guy?

http://coppertopautosports.blogspot.com/


Yes sir, that's Jeremy's car.


ericjon262 MSG #104, 12-27-2014 10:42 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:


Yes sir, that's Jeremy's car.


he hasn't given up on it has he? I hadn't seen any updates in several months.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #105, 12-28-2014 07:57 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by ericjon262:


he hasn't given up on it has he? I hadn't seen any updates in several months.


He still has the car. Upon chatting with Jer, he's been too busy with travelling for work. That explains the lack of updates on his blog.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #106, 01-18-2015 08:20 AM
      I'm still plugging away at this project despite the cold weather and lack of heat in the garage. However, I've made a little progress.
I'm looking to smooth out the engine bay a little. Nothing major, just remove any offending areas and sharp edges. (Body filler will be applied to smooth things out further.)

A few cardboard templates and then a transfer to light gauge sheet metal is in order.









In the preparation of reinstalling the rear window, one first has to remove the old urethane sealer. This is easily accomplished by using the right tools. I removed as much of the old urethane using a sharp utility knife. Then the remainder was easily removed using a Walter wire wheel. This makes the job pleasant and the results speak for themselves. Yes, I'll apply the proper primer before the window goes back in. But that's for another day.






Since I mentioned it was cold earlier, I decided to make a model of the fuel tank. (In the warmth of my house!)
Yes, I'll be building an all aluminum fuel tank for this car. It's a wee bit bigger than stock 87 tank that I used to measure from.




Note: I will be adding baffles to the inside. They're just not shown here.


I used thick cardboard to make the fuel tank body.








I installed this cardboard model into position and since it fits well, I can now commit to cutting on the laser using 5052 1/8" aluminum.
I'll make a video of the laser in action once I get to that point.
That's all for now.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 01-18-2015).]

Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #107, 01-18-2015 09:20 AM
      Dang, that's a lot of work. Looking forward to seeing how you put the fuel tank together.

ericjon262 MSG #108, 01-18-2015 12:34 PM
      having made a cardboard tank(not fuel though) for mock up purposes myself, I strongly recommend that you test fit that tank every step of the way. I had a tank built for my turbo 3500 swap and it almost didn't fit. cardboard flexes in ways aluminum doesn't.

wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #109, 02-08-2015 10:10 PM
      Any updates ? Waiting for the gas tank , looks interesting .

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #110, 03-15-2015 07:28 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by wftb:

Any updates ? Waiting for the gas tank , looks interesting .


Updates you say? Nothing major at this time. The tank has been nested and I'll get to it within the month.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #111, 03-15-2015 07:31 AM
      Okay, I'll admit, I've been a little slack. February indeed was way too cold to be out in the garage. But now, I have some motivation again.

I cleaned, flushed, inspected and pressure tested the stock dual-core radiator and it passes my inspection.
I also picked up a new rad cap to accent the now clean and ready-to-install rad.


After inspecting my old clutch master, I decided not to reuse it. Instead, thanks to Netcam, I just bought his new one. (I think it's a unit from Rodney Dickman).


I wanted a complete polyurethane bushing kit to replace my worn out OEM bushings. This was easily accomplished by placing an order through the Fiero store. Very quick shipping too, three days.


That leaves the ball-joints. Well, the 88 upper is made of unobtanium and cannot be found locally (in Canada). Instead of finding something dimensionally close, and making it fit, I chose to place an order with Rodney Dickman.


New upper and lower ball-joints, steering rack bushing, new rear upright through bolts and tie rod end boots. Again, package arrived fairly quickly at my door in only four days.


Since I'm refreshing all the old, worn out parts, it only makes sense to get all new grade 10.9 hardware for the suspension.


Even though I have some new parts and I'm excited to install them, I still need to maintain the rest of the fleet for the upcoming season. I need to move to a planet that has 36 hours in a day!

PS-Upon opening a shoe box full of oddities, I found something....



[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 03-15-2015).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #112, 03-22-2015 04:54 AM
      I'm aiming for a clean engine bay. With having said that, the battery will be relocated to a better area. What better way than to move it under the passenger side head lamp. This consists of making a battery tray, removing the area under the headlight and bolting in the tray. I used 1/8" aluminum for this project and yes, the stock battery hold down bracket will be reused, it's not shown in the photos though.

Note: I'm using the GT fascia. (This battery box will be hidden by this fascia). Non Aero cars might not be able to get away with this mod as the battery may interfere with the plastic.

















Passenger side head lamp assembly.


After removal.


Cut the sheet metal and you're left with a hole.


Trim these two studs a little as they interfere with the battery box flange.


Now is a good time to paint the area since it's exposed.


Secure battery box with 1/4" hardware.




RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #113, 03-24-2015 06:21 AM
      Great stuff. I'm curious how low your battery sits, and if you will still have room on top for the headlights.

I thought I put mine pretty low and I had no intent to put pop-up lights back in, but since my project took a different turn, I'm looking to put the pop-ups back in and fear they won't fit now.

How do you plan on servicing the battery if needed?

Bob


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #114, 03-24-2015 06:34 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by RCR:

Great stuff. I'm curious how low your battery sits, and if you will still have room on top for the headlights.

I thought I put mine pretty low and I had no intent to put pop-up lights back in, but since my project took a different turn, I'm looking to put the pop-ups back in and fear they won't fit now.

How do you plan on servicing the battery if needed?

Bob



Thanks for commenting Bob.

From the floor of the battery tray to the lowest part of the headlight assembly (in its lowest, parked position) is 8 3/4". My battery is 7 3/8" in height. Therefore I have 1 3/8" of clearance.
As for servicing the battery, I'll look into a quality unit that needs little maintenance. Perhaps a sealed unit from Optima. Either way, it's only a few minute job to remove the headlamp assembly if needed.

Here's two more pictures.
Despite not showing the battery in position, here you can see the clearance.


If I remove the curved steel from the bottom of the fascia, I can bolt that area to the battery box. (That should be a good indication of how low my battery box sits).

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 03-24-2015).]

RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #115, 03-25-2015 06:01 AM
      Thanx for the extra shot. Much appreciated.

Bob


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #116, 04-30-2015 05:39 AM
      Although April was very busy for me, I did manage to get some things done on the car. This time, the front of the car got a little attention.

Since I had used parts, they must be disassembled, cleaned and inspected before going into service.
88 rack disassembled, cleaned, inspected and painted.


Clean parts and new brass bushing.


Stake the inner tie rod. (You can also see the generous amount of grease).


Brass bushing correctly installed, more grease and yes, I painted the rack while it was apart.


The brass bushing, when installed correctly, sticks out 8 mm as seen. I used 3 rivets 120° apart to secure the bushing.


Index marks for setting the pinion tension.


Bellows and rubber mounts installed on the now clean rack.




Painted the rack hold down brackets.


I removed the spare tire tub for better access.


See, more room.


88 specific steering shaft.


This flexible cover from the 84 doesn't fit the 88 intermediate shaft because of the rag joint. I'll have to look into finding the correct one.
Anybody have one to sell?


Rack installed. The original nuts on the backside of the crossmember were missing. I chose 3/8"-16 x 1" zinc plated with Nylock nuts.
Note: You can get a wrench on the back side to hold the bolts from turning.


Since the factory shop manual, nor Rodney's instructions mention the torque of nut #7, I'm going with the 28-40 ft-lb scale since it's an M10x1.5 nut.
Exploded view from FSM.



For those of you that are interested in the installation of a larger brake booster on your Fiero, this is for you. It's not that difficult to do, really. Follow along if you will.

Note: Some use the 96 S10 booster for this mod. I used a 1995 Suburban booster because I had it. It's an 11" dual diaphragm design. It also has studs that make in easy to bolt the Fiero booster bracket to.

Remove the old booster from the car. You can actually move the brake master out of the way, leaving the brake lines intact. You'll have to remove the little screw that holds the proportioning valve in place. Once this is done, unhook the booster pushrod from the brake pedal, remove the four bolts from the booster, and place it on the bench. We need some parts from the stock Fiero booster.





Note the pushrod length. This unit is longer and will be reused in the larger booster. Yes, it's a direct swap.


This is the bajonet fitting. You'll see there are a few places that are staked. These need to be unstaked. Using a screw driver makes this easy.


Here is what it looks like unstaked. Do this on all the area's needing it.


Place the booster in a vice as shown. (Use aluminum angle on the jaws of the vice to protect the threads).
We're going to rotate the housing around 1/16th of a turn. It does have a spring in there and it will fly apart.
Prepare yourself and get a helper to hold down the top of the booster while you rotate.


Disassembled, this is how it looks.




In this photo, you'll need to remove this lock clip.


Exploded view.


Look way down and you'll see a circlip. Carefully remove this.


Pull out the pushrod like shown.


This is what you need.


Now, cut the bracket off the Fiero booster. We'll reuse this on the new booster.


This is the bigger 11" booster.


Like you did with the Fiero booster, take the new one apart the same way. You can see the different length pushrods between the two.
The Fiero pushrod is the longer of the two. This is what we'll be using in the bigger booster.


Circlip, pushrod and seal.


Insert pushrod into bore of new booster.


Circlip sitting on top, ready to be installed.


Circlip properly seated.


Retainer, spring and seal goes on.


At the top, you can seal the simple lock ring.






Turn the booster around and install the plastic guide.


Next the spring retainer goes on.


Now the spring.


The front of the booster now gets installed. Compress the spring, and rotate slightly to lock in position.


The studs are too long in my opinion. Cut them to aid in the installation.


The stock Fiero plastic sleeve, on the right, is reused.


Use new nuts with the Nylock insert.


Bolt the Fiero bracket that you cut off earlier. I painted mine to match.


You will have to clearance for the bigger booster. Several judicious blows of a hammer in the offending area take care of this.


Add some paint.


Install the newly modified 11" booster.


Reattach the master cylinder and enjoy! See, easy.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 05-12-2015).]

zkhennings MSG #117, 05-08-2015 04:02 PM
      Very nice work, did you pioneer the booster guts swap? Impressive. I should be picking up an L61 in the near future...

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #118, 05-12-2015 05:30 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by zkhennings:

Very nice work, did you pioneer the booster guts swap? Impressive. I should be picking up an L61 in the near future...


Thank you for the compliment. Although I've swapped a few booster push rods out in the past, not only on the Fiero but on other GM vehicles, I'm certainly not the pioneer.
Phil documented this at one time on his Fiero. You can read about it here.
I hope to see a build on your L61 in the future.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 05-12-2015).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #119, 05-12-2015 05:40 AM
      And today, the rear window gets re-installed.






















Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #120, 05-23-2015 03:51 PM
      Moving forward, I was eager to get the front suspension reinstalled. I took the stock 84 springs and cut 1.5 coils off both springs. I used an angle grinder with a thin cut-off wheel. Yes, you could also use torches but let them cool naturally and do not quench them in water! Then followed a visit to the sandblaster to remove years of crud. Then a little paint.




Cleaned the outer tie rods since they were in great shape.


A little paint and new boots, and they're ready to go.


The stock front 88 sway bar bracket has a little slope to it.


Stock bracket on the left, aftermarket one, with poly bushing on the right.


Reassembly begins.








At this point, I decided to make my own flex lines and take a break from all the paint fumes.
This was relatively easy to do as I've done it before on my motorcycle. Having left over material from that endeavor, all I needed was the fittings. The local speed shop had these. Anyhow, here's the end result.
The lines I've seen for sale were all around 18" long. I didn't like that length as it seemed a little too short for my liking.
So, I chose to make mine 24" long.
TFS line on top, mine on the bottom.




I like to finish off the end by putting heat shrink tubing over the outer casing.




Since the finish on the 18" wheels was in sad shape, the sandblaster makes short work of removing all the old powder coating. Now they're ready for some colour! Off for coating next week.


Oh yeah, a 2002 Northstar dropout was in the classifieds. It ended up following me home. You never know when I'll need it.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #121, 06-06-2015 06:43 AM
      More front end work continues.
The front bearings felt good so I cleaned them up with a wire wheel. Removed as much of the original grease and repacked.


Added some anti-seize to the body and threads and reinstalled.




Caliper spacer bracket installed.


Nylon concentric ring installed.


Having done various big brake upgrades on other vehicles in the past, I too wanted to enjoy the benefits on this car.
It's quite simple really. Find a suitable rotor, make an adapter for the stock calipers and enjoy.




Tap two holes on each bracket and apply some paint.


Same brackets for the rear.


Cheap rotor for testing/fitting purposes.










A quick visit to Canada Brakes landed competitive pricing, no tax and free delivery to my door. Oh, despite having "Canada" in their name, they've moved to California. So I ordered a set of drilled, slotted and zinc plated rotors for both my Fiero and my LS1 powered Formula Firebird.


I made a jig to ease the drilling of the 5 on 100 bolt pattern that must be done to the rotors.


Install the new rotors.




I picked up the wheels from the powder coater. They're semi-gloss black with UV protection.


Then I installed some 225/45/ZR18 Continental tires all around.


On the front, they do clear the battery box despite the angle of the photo.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 09-27-2015).]

cam-a-lot MSG #122, 06-06-2015 09:49 AM
      Looks awesome! I may stop in this weekend and check it out. I would give my left nut to have your skills



Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #123, 06-06-2015 01:20 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

More front end work continues.
The front bearings felt good so I cleaned them up with a wire wheel. Removed as much of the original grease and repacked.




WAAAAYYYYYY too much grease. You'll pop the dust covers off the first time those get warm.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #124, 06-21-2015 07:33 AM
      Another productive day on the car. I chose to remove the original seam sealer and reapply new sealer for piece of mind.




Followed by new weather stripping around the perimeter.




Now, back to the repairs on the sheet metal.








More primer and seam sealer.








Good quality paint to protect the primer.


Followed by gravel guard as an added layer of protection.




Expansion tank also got some paint.


With having real nice frame rails on this car, I also chose "Krown" rust protection spray to thoroughly get inside the frame rails.
Piece of mind is well worth it.


Plastic plugs reinstalled.


I chose to install some weather stripping under the end caps to help keep out water.


End caps in place.




With all this complete, I was able to set the fastback in place. It's starting to look like a car again!


I need to paint two brackets before I continue. But that's enough for today.
I did obtain an 88 master cylinder, thanks to cam-a-lot on the forum. I was surprised to see the weight of this thing. It has a cast iron body versus the aluminum bodied 84 unit.


Then apply paint to protect the cast iron and it looks good.


While I had difficulty finding new, proper fitting heater core hoses locally, Rodney Dickman was the solution. Some zero-lash sway bar end links were also ordered at the same time.


On a side note. I installed a 60mm shorter swing arm on my GSXR 1100. Sadly, it never came with a chain guard. So I made one.
It looks long in the photo but it actually fits nicely. Polished mirror stainless steel too.


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #125, 06-22-2015 08:00 PM
      Just check the dust covers on your hubs. Thermal expansion of that grease will pop them off... and they're hard to replace.

Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #126, 06-23-2015 01:10 PM
      Man, you do great work. What brake rotors are you using?

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #127, 07-02-2015 03:56 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Will:

WAAAAYYYYYY too much grease. You'll pop the dust covers off the first time those get warm.


 
quote
Originally posted by Will:

Just check the dust covers on your hubs. Thermal expansion of that grease will pop them off... and they're hard to replace.


That was the very first photo of the grease being applied to the bearing. I managed to get good coverage in between the bearings themselves. I then rotated the bearing assembly several times to get the grease spread around. The excess was removed and this is what they looked like.





 
quote
Originally posted by Quad Raider:

Man, you do great work. What brake rotors are you using?


Thanks Quad Raider. Sorry, but I don't want to disclose the rotor information.


I slipped into the garage for a few hours and got a few more things done. I reinstalled the nylon honey comb style impact strip to the rear bumper.






I had to remove the rear bumper upper mounting strip so that the wiring could be reinstalled.


Tail light wiring installed.




To aid in the holding of the wiring, I chose these zip ties made by Grote. They have a barbed end that fits into a hole, thus making them the ideal solution to replace the brittle and old factory clips.


I decided it was time to tighten down the fastback screws. This is self explanatory but I noticed one gap that I thought was too large. I didn't want to risk breaking the fiberglass and installed a spacer.


After that, the rear bumper cover went on.


A bit of work up front included installing the zero lash sway bar end links.




I wanted piece of mind knowing the heater core was in good shape. If it wasn't, a new one would be ordered. Well, the old one was removed for inspection. It looked to be in great shape with no visual defects. The "green stuff" is not corrosion but marking paint. A thorough flushing while it was off followed by a little compressed air, and it's ready to go back in.


Along with new hoses of course.


While at the front of the car, the clutch master went in. Here' s the orientation that's recommended. Banjo faces this way.


Brake master temporarily set in place. I need to run the brake lines first, then reinstall the spare tire tub. I have to get some "P" clips first. But that's for another day.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-02-2015).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #128, 07-26-2015 07:52 AM
      This was a good day as I got a few things done.
I set the engine and trans back in place. This was the first time after having installed the shock towers and sheet metal. I have ample clearance around everything!






Even though I mounted the engine "straight up", I have room for the stock exhaust manifold. I will have to add the rear sway bar and see where it has clearance issues, if any. I will probably just make a header once I get to that point.


The oil pan is level with the bottom of the cradle.


Lots of room. I still have a few Northstar engine's here...



I also managed to get most of the brake and clutch lines run. Again, that sucked in the heat.











Since my battery is now under the right front headlight, I need to get power to the back of the car. So, I used some number 2 welding cable for this. It's very flexible too.


I chose to route the positive cable through the inside of the car. Beside the vacuum line was an ideal entry point.
This wasn't a lot of fun on a hot day.


It's only resting in place right now. I'll make a distribution block to hold the heavy wire. I will also use this point to pull power for the rest of the car since it's so close to the C500.


Don't mind the crusty looking engine and starter, they'll be cleaned up in time.
Here you can see the main starter wire in place and how it's routed. On all positive leads, I applied a red piece of shrink tube.


Since the battery is somewhat difficult to get to, I chose to also install a main disconnect switch while I was at it.






I used this tool to crimp all my ends on the battery leads.



Oh, I finally got around to cutting the aluminum for the fuel tank too!


[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-26-2015).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #129, 08-15-2015 09:39 AM
      And the fun continues.
I hate the look of the factory antenna on the car. So, I removed it and filled the hole.


While that only took a few minutes, the wiring would not.
I chose to mount the PCM on the rear trunk wall. The location is ideal as it's out of the way, hardly noticeable and easy to get to.
You'll also notice the routing of the wires. I like this and after some new loom, it's there to stay.




A rat's nest that's being tidied up.




I added a new hole in this location. Using a grommet, I passed the wiring into the cabin.




On the inside, I chose to leave the C203 as-is since it's small.




Here's the start of the marriage of the Fiero harness to the Ecotec harness.


Because the C500 was rather large and bulky, I've chosen to just cut the wire off the connector and attach as needed.


I will however use wire labels to indicate the circuits.


I used a thick piece of lexan to make a simple mounting surface. This now holds a lug for the main power. As well as the BCM, fuel and A/C relays.




I've also joined the fastback tail light harness to the 84 harness. Despite not being plug and play, this was very easy to do. I removed and discarded the 84 turn/stop relays and used the proper colour wires for the left and right turn signals. These wires are hot and will keep the turn signal bulbs illuminated at all times! This is solved by cutting the white feed wire on the brake switch. This cut separates the feed to the turn signal/hazard circuit that caused the turn signals to stay hot. After the cut, the signal lights work like normal. I then ran a light blue wire from the brake switch to the tail light harness so that I could have working brake lights.


Since I was there, I added the back up light circuit from the F23 trans to the tail lights.


Here's my pile of excess wire so far.


While visiting my friend, I obtained these seats. I think these will find their way into my VW. Thanks Joe.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #130, 09-07-2015 06:46 PM
      Since we had a long weekend here, I took a few hours and built an aluminum bumper for the front of the car. To match the rear bumper of course.
As with all things I do, a simple model was created. Yes I know, it's upside down in this photo.


Here's the Mitsubishi CNC laser cutter at work.


The CNC press brake is a necessity for great looking bends.


Here's some of the parts required to build the front bumper.


Clamped and ready to weld.


Since the Fiero bumper is slightly curved, I too chose to mimic the bend. A one inch spacer in the middle is all that's required.


Side by side photo.


Some gravel guard in behind the bumper to keep it nice.


Voila! Front bumper installed.




The turn signal brackets got the black paint treatment as well.


Honey comb energy absorber installed and fits nicely. This is the one for the GT style nose.


And lastly, the bumper cover went on.


It was very hot here and I didn't want to start adjusting body gaps. That can wait for another cooler day.


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #131, 09-07-2015 07:30 PM
      Did you weigh the stock one and your replacement?

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #132, 09-09-2015 05:29 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Will:

Did you weigh the stock one and your replacement?


Ah, a weights and measures question. Indeed I did weigh them. The stock front bumper, which is made of 20 gauge steel, weighed in at 11.8 lbs. My 1/8" (11 gauge) aluminum unit came in at 12.96 lbs.


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #133, 09-09-2015 09:04 PM
      1.1 # increase? At the very end of the car where it will have the most effect on moment of inertia? What are you DOING?

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #134, 09-13-2015 05:43 AM
      A minor update.
As you know, this was a notchback car under going a fastback conversion. When looking down the side of the car at the belt line, the line itself didn't seem straight, like it should. This is not right and I didn't want to live with ugly body panel gaps. I had to see what was not quite right and the cause of this dilemma. I seen two issues that would easily fix this.

One, after I installed the T-top H frame, the drip rail was sitting a little too low. This was interfering and causing the fastback to not sit low enough at that point. The front did indeed have to come down a little.

While not easy to see, here I massaged the drip rails and hammered them up to fit in the pocket of the fastback.


A little spray paint as required.


The result is a better fitting fastback. It now sits lower in the front, where it should, and it lines up a lot better.






The second part to address was raising the rear of the fastback slightly to level everything out.
Several well placed laser cut aluminum washers did the trick.


Voila, a straight body line.






I'll have to raise the rear bumper as well, just not today. On another note, the wiring has been coming along nicely. This was very easy to wire up and interface with the Fiero harness. Now it's not all done, but it's close. I'm not too worried about adding all the BCM functions at this point, but rather focus on engine management. In reality, if I was to install the fuel tank, it would start.

Here's the ODB2 diagnostic port in the stock location.


El cheapo scan tool at work.


No diagnostic trouble codes. Nice.


That's all for today, I've had enough.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #135, 09-27-2015 08:51 AM
      I'd like to thank WFTB for taking the time out of his busy day to drive over and assist me. I'm one step closer thanks to him!

Since I had to raise the fast back up some 6 millimeters, I ended up with a gap between the bottom of the tail lights and bumper. So off came the bumper and I raised the upper mounting pad. This was easy since the holes were slotted in my favour. I know, I'll have to recondition the tail lights.


While the bumper cover was off, I also trimmed the aluminum bumper mount a little for clearance.


I chose to repair the corner of the trunk since everything was exposed.




Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #136, 10-17-2015 12:41 PM
      I decided to drop the cradle in order to make room to work. I never liked the look of the stock hinge boxes and they've already been removed. I was thinking of bullet hinges at first but why not use what's already there? A couple pieces of 1/4" steel, and re-purposing the original hinge, you can end up with something nice. Kudo's to Fieroguru for this tip.

Take the original hinge, and cut it off at the bend.


Tack weld the two parts together.


Lay down some welds.


Grind both sides smooth.




Drill some holes through the spreader plate.


3/8"-16 nuts on the backside.


Tacked in place and you end up with assembly.


Place weights on the decklid to keep it in place.


Add spacers as required to keep the decklid centered. 1/8" was a perfect gap.




Note: I added an 11 gauge reinforcing plate earlier on as an added precaution. (I thought the factory sheet metal in that area was too thin).




From the bottom, you can see how this is going to fit. If you look closely, you can see that I have to taper the end to match the contour of the firewall.




This is the spreader plate. There are two rectangular slots under the rear window ledge and these just slide into place.
I chose to silicone the spreader plate in place. Just in case I need to remove the hinges, the plate will stay put.


While the silicone was curing, I wanted to temporarily bolt it down.


Here's the new passenger side hinge, painted of course.








I can't leave the driver's side out.


The firewall looks way nicer without the ugly, stock hinge boxes.


Decklid closes well without binding.


The louvered vents fit well and the gap is nice. I still need to install the hold down bracket though.


wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #137, 10-17-2015 11:07 PM
      It was fun to see all the work you have done , everything looks great ! I see you could use some of Rodneys decklid struts .Next time you are up this way , let me know and I can give you my set up .I don't need it since i traded my spoiler away ....

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #138, 12-14-2015 05:39 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by wftb:

It was fun to see all the work you have done , everything looks great ! I see you could use some of Rodneys decklid struts .Next time you are up this way , let me know and I can give you my set up .I don't need it since i traded my spoiler away ....



Thanks Steve. I just might take you up on that deck lid strut offer!

I've been occupied with some other Fiero related stuff (Northstar and F23) and haven't really touched my car lately. So here's a little progress report.
I installed polyurethane bushings into the rear control arms.
Here's a simple tool to pull the old rubber bushing out.






Bushings installed and control arms painted black.


At this point, I'd like to give a big "thank you" to Pete, aka cam-a-lot. He found a fuel tank from an 88 and let me know about it. I just had to go for a drive and check it out. It was very solid and complete too. What a score! All I really had to do was hit it with a wire brush and give it a few coats of Tremclad rattle can paint. Since I have the sending unit out, I decided to check the resistance of the fuel level sender. Of course it's old and not accurate any more. I'll need to address this before I reinstall it. Oh, and a more suitable fuel pump is in order too. That's all for now, the paint fumes have gotten to me!
Note: For those following, yes I laser cut the material to build an aluminum fuel tank. This will still happen but for now, I'll use the 88 tank.










Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #139, 01-08-2016 10:30 AM
      As mentioned earlier, I knew I needed to address the Fieros original fuel sending unit. Lets face it, I'm working on an older car here and parts deteriorate over time. I had options though.
1) Use the original sending unit. There was no way I was going to just clean the original rheostat and hope for the best results.
2) Buy a new sending unit. That's a viable option.
3) Get creative and make something newer, and better, fit.

I chose option 3 of course.

Here's the stock Fiero sending unit sans fuel pump.




Remove all the old parts as most won't be reused. I will however keep the float arm and float though.




Here's the bare fuel return line. Yes, I removed the original Fiero sending unit bracket as I'll use one from another GM vehicle.


One the left, the Fiero. On the right, 1989 C1500 Suburban.






Why the Suburban unit? Simple.
A) The rheostat and wiper are made of stainless steel.
B) The range of operation is 0-90 Ω, just like the Fiero.
C) Because I already it. Recycling at it's finest.

Here's the Suburban rheostat.




Removed from the fuel line.


I removed the C1500 bracket.


Then TIG welded it onto the Fiero sending unit fuel line.




Onto the other modifications required to make this work.
The Fiero float arm needs some minor grinding.


This clearance is needed to fit the Fiero float arm into the C1500 plastic pivot.


Here's a close up of the upgraded design.


I had to slightly enlarge the inner diameter to allow the Fiero float arm to fit.








Factory float installed.


Now lets assemble this Frankenstein.






Onto the fuel pump now.
Walbro GSS341 to the rescue. This is a high output pump that will flow 255 litres per hour and utilizes a proven gerotor design.








The end result of my efforts, see for yourself. Close to 0 Ω indicating empty.


Float around the half way point.


Float at the full mark or real close to 90 Ω.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #140, 02-20-2016 12:02 PM
      In today's episode, I'll hack up a new set of rear struts to make a pair of coilovers.

Monroe strut in it's virgin form.


This end cap is too large in OD and must be removed.
Note: I kept the strut shaft in the retracted position in order to avoid damage.


Using a zip wheel, score the offending material. Don't go too deep!


A little difficult to see but use Vice Grip locking pliers and fatigue the metal by rocking it back and forth.


When done correctly, you'll end up with four little stubs.


Just grind those off flush.


Onto the spring perch.
Lightly score the perimeter, just above the weld.


1) Using a hammer, give the spring perch a whack. It'll come off quite easily.
2) You can see the parts that have been removed from the strut.
3) My struts were powder coated. Despite the fact that the outer diameter was smaller then the threaded sleeve that I plan on using, I still had to strip the paint. Using a sanding disk, this made my job easy.


Here's one threaded sleeve installed. These are 2" ID x 5" long. I have many of these laying around but you can find them at your local speed shop. Remember some struts are thicker, Koni perhaps, and might require a different inner diameter.


I also have several adjuster's here as well. I'm not liking the fit of the gold one. It's a little too loose for my liking.


The small threaded holes are there to keep the sleeve secure to the strut and keep the sleeve from turning. Short set screws will find their way into there.


The two piece silver adjuster's fit way nicer and I think I'll use them.


Strut bodies painted.


The springs are used and they'll need to get sand blasted and painted. They are 300 lbs, 12" long and have an ID of 2.560".
The poly ring fits into the top of the spring to avoid squeaking.


To those swapping an 88 cradle into an 84-87 chassis, this is for you.
As you may or may not know, the 88's have the strut towers closer together. When installing the 88 cradle into the 84-87 cars, one should position the struts to match the location of the 88.
Since these measurements may be difficult to obtain, I mapped them out for you.

Note: I measured a friend's 88 to get my measurements.

When looking "DOWN" from the top of the 84-87 engine bay, (and standing behind the rear of the car facing forward), the new 88 strut shaft location will be:

INWARD 1.750" (44.45 mm)
FORWARD 15/16" (23.81 mm)

These measurements are "per strut". You'll have to move both struts!

With this information, I drilled holes in their respective locations.






Knowing the dimensions, I also made a pair of these.


The small ring will secure the upper strut bushing. The larger ring will locate the spring and keep it from moving.
These need to be welded but first I'm opting to install the cradle and make sure everything lines up as intended.






The red bushing is the one I need, four actually. Since I didn't have four good ones, I went to Napa and got a set of poly end link bushings. They're almost the perfect outer diameter. The inner diameter is too small and will be opened up with a drill.


To end my day, I'm now going to sandblast the rear coil springs and get them ready for powder coat.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #141, 03-08-2016 05:28 AM
      Onto the completion of the struts, shall we?
Here's the completed strut adapter's with studs installed.




Added some paint to the strut adapter's and picked up the powder coated rear springs.


Between the strut body and coil spring adjuster, I applied some black silicone to keep out water and other unwanted matter.


Assembly of the strut starts with adding the steel washer and my modified bushing.


Coil spring gets slid on next.


Along with the adapter and top bushing.


Then the flange bolt gets snugged up.


I chose to install a bump stop that I had laying around. It's not Fiero but it'll work.


I cut a slit in it, slid it over the strut shaft and placed in tightly into the pocket as seen.




Here's the completed coilover's. Ride height will be adjusted on the car when that time comes.




Then I installed the new rear hub bearings and seals.








Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #142, 04-03-2016 07:09 AM
      After getting my rear strut angles finalized, I knew there was no way I'd leave the old hole exposed. It just looked unfinished and ugly.


I had a plan though. Grind the hole flush with the body leaves a bigger hole.


Laser cut two 18 gauge fillers.


Tack in place.


I fully welded the circumference and ground flush. It's difficult to snap a clean shot of a surface that has been ground. This will look good once I get some filler, primer and paint on it.




I had a clutch master from Rodney. This was for the old setup with the larger hole to fit the earlier cars. Since my clutch pedal was bent, I swapped to the newer setup that I had. This created a problem. The new style arm has a smaller pin. We can't have that. A new brass bushing was made, simple. Problem solved.


Here, a new clutch is waiting to be installed.


The flywheel was in great shape and as seen here, torqued to spec with a drop of Loctite on the threads.
1st pass, 39 lb-ft
2nd pass, 25°


Kevlar impregnated clutch disk installed. Here you can see the centering tool in place.


Followed by the pressure plate torqued to 18 lb-ft.


Of course, a new concentric slave cylinder had to go in.


From here, I will verify the clutch depth and measure the throw out bearing range. It's always good to be sure.

I picked up an 88 cradle from a member on here.


This obviously won't work for my needs, so it too will get modified. Sorry guys, turn away if your squeamish about hacking up a perfectly good 88 cradle. I cut the front and rear sections out as all I wanted are the side rails.
PS-This will be used for a future project.




I then spent some time removing all the offending areas and excess brackets/mounts. I will be making something that fits my needs and wants. Before you ask, I did make a fixture/jig that will allow me index the key points. This will also hold the rails in the factory position for when I weld in the new rectangular tubing. I'll post pictures when it's done.

In time, I'd like to modernize the lighting on the car. This is the start. A set of LED side marker lights.


These are sold by member Danyel and can be seen here -> http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum4/HTML/066792.html.
These were very nicely made and packaged with clear instructions too!
Very professional and I recommend dealing with the guy.

Thank you Danyel for an awesome product.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 04-03-2016).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #143, 04-03-2016 10:50 AM
      What a great build, and build thread!

There are so many, but this one is right up there with the best of them.

Thanks for taking the time to document and explain things in the detail you do, I'm sure I'm not the only one that uses your text and pics for reference.

Keep up the good work, looking forward to future progress/posts, especially as the weather improves.

Hope things have settled down enough on the home front to allow you more time on your projects.

Great work Shayne!

HAGO!


RCR (rcrabine@comcast.net) MSG #144, 04-03-2016 08:26 PM
      I'll second Sage. It's been a while since I've checked in. Great stuff that covers all gambits of the Fiero.

Awesome work and thanks for sharing.

Bob


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #145, 06-02-2016 07:34 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Sage:

What a great build, and build thread!

There are so many, but this one is right up there with the best of them.

Thanks for taking the time to document and explain things in the detail you do, I'm sure I'm not the only one that uses your text and pics for reference.

Keep up the good work, looking forward to future progress/posts, especially as the weather improves.

Hope things have settled down enough on the home front to allow you more time on your projects.

Great work Shayne!

HAGO!



 
quote
Originally posted by RCR:

I'll second Sage. It's been a while since I've checked in. Great stuff that covers all gambits of the Fiero.

Awesome work and thanks for sharing.

Bob



Thank you sirs for the kind words. This is my first ever build thread and I'm trying to make an effort to make it thorough and detailed. I know I bounce around a little but I work with the weather and time as they allow. Now that the warmer weather is here, I hope I can make more progress.

Have a great day!


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #146, 06-02-2016 07:42 AM
      Well, I got a few more things done.
I took the Ecotec starter apart and cleaned it in the solvent tank.


Once clean, I put fresh grease on the moving parts, installed a new solenoid, painted the body and installed it back onto the Ecotec.


I had previously installed the clutch so what better time than now to install the transaxle? A little supplied grease on the input shaft and it's ready to go.


The two are now married again. I will pressure wash the components before installation.


These ugly shock towers in their naked form.




I picked up some supplies for the occasion.


Shock towers and aluminum diamond plate now blackened.


Towers seam sealed. I know, the sealer is a little ugly at this point. It will all be covered soon.






I like the black textured look. That's what I was going for.




Even the trunk got a vacuuming, seam sealer treatment and a coat of gravel guard.












Then I chose to clean the dirty trunk carpet.
Before:


After:




I swapped the truck lock assembly over onto the the better deck lid. I managed to free up the key as well.


Next up, I will verify the fuel gauge is in the same operating range as the sender and install the 88 fuel tank.


Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #147, 06-02-2016 09:01 AM
      Amazing amount and quality of work. Thanks for posting all the photos, too.

ITALGT MSG #148, 06-02-2016 05:50 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Quad Raider:

Amazing amount and quality of work. Thanks for posting all the photos, too.


X2 on that comment... I actually came here to say the same thing.

This is very impressive work. Talk about an ambitious human being!

Very cool build!

[This message has been edited by ITALGT (edited 06-02-2016).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #149, 06-02-2016 08:55 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Quad Raider:

Amazing amount and quality of work. Thanks for posting all the photos, too.


 
quote
Originally posted by ITALGT:


X2 on that comment... I actually came here to say the same thing.

This is very impressive work. Talk about an ambitious human being!

Very cool build!



Thanks fellas. I'm trying to be thorough and I know we all like photos. Sometimes they give us a little needed inspiration.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #150, 06-02-2016 08:57 PM
      Before installing the fuel tank, I had to make sure the sending unit and fuel gauge were going to work together. I knew the sending unit was 0-90 Ω but I wasn't too sure about the fuel gauge. The part number was smeared and I couldn't look it up. Do I have another option you ask? Why yes, yes I do.

The solution is quite simple. Use a spare computer power supply and hook the assembly up and see what happens.
Here is the gauge that I'm using. Equus 8000 series.


PC power supply.


Jump the two terminals as shown to "turn on" the power supply.


If you probe the yellow and black pins, you can see 12 volts is present.


With this simple circuit wired up, here is my progress.
Fuel sender in the "empty" position.


Fuel sender in the "half" position.


Fuel sender in the "full" position.


Here's a little video to show the smoothness of my hybrid sending unit in action.


Now that I'm certain it works, I put it back inside the fuel tank.


[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-13-2016).]

LornesGT MSG #151, 06-02-2016 11:47 PM
      Thanks for posting in such detail of your mods and repairs. Wish I had all you tools, especially the lazer cutter.



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #152, 06-26-2016 08:29 AM
      To those wondering, the 88 fuel tank physically fits into the 84 chassis with ease. Since I didn't want to mess around with old, rusty fuel tank straps, I went and picked up some really long ones. These are made by Spectra and the part number is: ST125 as seen.


While they are too long, they required some modifications. Chop, cut, rebuild. Here are the results.




Of course some black paint was in order.




After the cutting, grinding and painting of the straps, I then installed the fuel tank. I also added some thin rubber between the straps and the tank in order to reduce creaking and general noise.
The next step will be to clean and install the filler tube.




Now that the fuel tank is in for the last time, I had to install the filler tube. It was in nice shape but I decided to paint it black.


I also decided to install new rubber elbows as mine were old and weathered.


As you can see, the 1.5" ID hose comes longer and must be trimmed to fit.
The copper plumbing elbow was used to enlarge the ID on the smaller hose as it was very tight on the plastic 90 that I had.
PS-These are proper "fuel rated" hoses.


After trimming.


Installed on the filler tube.




The filler tube was then wiggled into place and secured to the car. For the smaller hose, I simply cut it in half, installed the fuel rated plastic 90 and trimmed to fit. I'm glad that's done.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #153, 07-08-2016 07:03 AM
      When I started this swap, I didn't have an 88 cradle. Not knowing if I'd be able to find one, I built a cradle with square tubing. While there is nothing wrong my square tube cradle, I've chosen to put it aside for now. After stumbling onto an 88 cradle from a local member, I decided to mount the Ecotec and F23 onto it instead.
Knowing the benefits of using jigs, I decided to make a cradle jig using material that I had on-hand. This will accurately index all the suspension mounting points and other critical mounting locations that I need. This will also hold the side rails in place while I make and modify 2"x3" tubing for the cross members. It will also get some legs so I can work at a more suitable height. With this jig, I will then be able to place the entire engine and trans combo right on top of it. This will allow me to position the drive train wherever I want more easily.

Here's a few pic's of the jig.


















The green tape, with the blue line, is the axle centerline.


I held the camera a little sideways. This jig is actually square.


Here is the Ecotec and F23 sitting roughly in place.


From this angle, you can see the diagonal down tubes. These double as supports to hold the axles. This is beneficial for measuring purposes.


From there, I started on the rear 2"x3" cross member. I chose to place it just under the rear sway bar. There is clearance for the bar to move and if I need more, I can slightly raise the sway bar.
I used thin cardboard, from a cereal box, and wrapped it around the tube. Then, I taped it together and trimmed to fit the contours as required.








Using a paint marker, I traced the outline required. The yellow stands out nicely on the steel. I still chose to use a black Sharpie and retrace on top of the yellow. Using a thin cut-off wheel, I removed the material not required.
















I will tack this in then start on the front cross member.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-08-2016).]

fieroguru MSG #154, 07-08-2016 09:45 AM
      I really enjoy reading fab intensive threads and this one has a few sections that bring back memories my prior swaps.

A couple of suggestions on the cradle fixture:
1. I would suggest you treat the axle center-line as a fluid dimension. It will change as the relative output locations on every transmission are different in relation to the crankshaft center-line (some more than others). If you lock down the axle center-line location, then the engine placement would shift slightly and change the mount dimensions based on transmission application. Additionally, When you deal with the physically larger engines (mostly V8s) or engines with the 4T65E-HD they have much less available space to move the engine/transmission combo to line up with the factory axle center-line. Besides, you want the axles to have some angle to them to keep all the balls and rollers moving around in the grease.

2. You might want to incorporate a method of raising all the cradle and suspension mount locations. There are several reasons you might want to do this. 1. The bottoms of the 88 cradle are not real precise and I have seen some that a welded section sticks down about 1/8" further than normal so it wouldn't directly fit the fixture. 2. You never know when you might want to build a cradle that has a lower base to allow lowering the engine placement and still keep everything protected, or raised suspension attachment locations to improve geometry on a lowered vehicle. 3. It more closely replicates the loading of the cradle as installed in the chassis - with the cradle only supported by the front and rear bolts.

Keep up the good work!


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #155, 07-09-2016 04:44 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:

I really enjoy reading fab intensive threads and this one has a few sections that bring back memories my prior swaps.

A couple of suggestions on the cradle fixture:
1. I would suggest you treat the axle center-line as a fluid dimension. It will change as the relative output locations on every transmission are different in relation to the crankshaft center-line (some more than others). If you lock down the axle center-line location, then the engine placement would shift slightly and change the mount dimensions based on transmission application. Additionally, When you deal with the physically larger engines (mostly V8s) or engines with the 4T65E-HD they have much less available space to move the engine/transmission combo to line up with the factory axle center-line. Besides, you want the axles to have some angle to them to keep all the balls and rollers moving around in the grease.

2. You might want to incorporate a method of raising all the cradle and suspension mount locations. There are several reasons you might want to do this. 1. The bottoms of the 88 cradle are not real precise and I have seen some that a welded section sticks down about 1/8" further than normal so it wouldn't directly fit the fixture. 2. You never know when you might want to build a cradle that has a lower base to allow lowering the engine placement and still keep everything protected, or raised suspension attachment locations to improve geometry on a lowered vehicle. 3. It more closely replicates the loading of the cradle as installed in the chassis - with the cradle only supported by the front and rear bolts.

Keep up the good work!



Hey Paul, Thanks for the excellent tips and information. I have two 88 cradles here and while these were similar in build, they both fit into this jig. I did see some variances between the two however. It seems as though GM was liberal in their tolerances on the cradles.

After cutting and fitting the front crossmember, it was time to weld it in fully. I had to think ahead before committing to a full weld though. In this case, I can say with certainty, I will have to slightly notch the front crossmember to clear the AC compressor bolt. No biggie and it'll happen the next time I get the welder out. If I used a 2"x2" tube, this wouldn't have been an issue. I'm very happy with the results and clearance of these 2"x3" crossmembers. I have excellent clearance around key components and the benefit of added stiffness. The worst part of this ordeal was removing the cradle from the jig to weld the bottom. The channels had enough room to get in there to tack the crossmembers in place, but not enough room for a full weld due to the stand the jig is sitting on.
Here are some pictures of today's progress.
















Instead of cutting a small piece of steel to fill this void, I just cut a small slot in the corner and hammered it down. A little bead of weld did the rest.






Here is the cradle as it sits right now. I've placed it back on the jig and set the driveline back in place. After I locate the final position, I will start on the mounts.


wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #156, 07-12-2016 07:21 PM
      Lots of great work going on here .I noticed you have your fuel pump assembly ready to go .Did happen to measure the assembly from top to bottom ? I need a ball park measurement so I can assemble my unit before I drop the tank .Or if you happen to know the distance from the hole in the tank down to the bottom will work as well .Thanks a lot . Steve

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #157, 07-13-2016 06:34 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by wftb:

Lots of great work going on here .I noticed you have your fuel pump assembly ready to go .Did happen to measure the assembly from top to bottom ? I need a ball park measurement so I can assemble my unit before I drop the tank .Or if you happen to know the distance from the hole in the tank down to the bottom will work as well .Thanks a lot . Steve



Hey Steve.
It seems as though we're both heavily involved in our projects. As for the measurement you require, sadly, I cannot assist you. I just cleaned up all the loose papers that I had on my desk last week. In that pile were the measurements that I had written down. I think you're on your own. Sorry bud.


wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #158, 07-13-2016 08:54 AM
      No problem , I will just leave the rubber tube off until I get the tank out .The assembly accordians up and down to fit a variety of GM cars , but the tube that flexes with it can't come off without ruining it .

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #159, 07-15-2016 06:40 AM
      With having the driveline in place, I needed to come up with a way to mount it. I've chosen to use a three point mounting system (engine mount not shown) with a dog bone like anchor on the far right side of the engine. (Not shown.)
After a few minutes, I came up with the templates.


Which lead to.






The result are these pieces.


Lets set them in place and see how they fit.
















Now I will tack them in place and put the entire assembly back into the car and check for any issues that might arise.
I think I'll be good though.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #160, 07-17-2016 08:29 AM
      My goal, for the weekend, was to get the Ecotec and F23 sitting in place. Well, that task has now been completed.
I need a mount in this area.


By modifying the factory bracket, I bolted my poly mount there.


I then made a little shelf for this mount to sit on.


A few pictures to show the general idea.






The mount sits flat when the Ecotec is sitting in the Cavaliers and Sunfires due to the tilt of the engine. I my application, the engine is mounted straight up. I chose to leave the mount tilted since there isn't a lot of room due to the slope of the oil pan.


Here are some pictures of the other brackets.
Note: I pulled these apart slightly to ease the installation of the trans.








Success. The engine and trans are sitting happily on the 88 cradle.




There is plenty of clearance here. This is where I will mount the dog bone in time.




The transaxle is really close to touching the frame rail. I will clearance this in time.


While I have the stock exhaust manifold in place, I will review my options. I don't like the angle but I think I can work with it.


cam-a-lot MSG #161, 07-17-2016 09:21 AM
      That looks awesome bud! Nice work It is pretty neat when an actual metal fab professional gets on these forums and is able to make the parts that we can all imagine, but don't have the skills or tools to make.

I love the ecotec motor. I have driven a few of them, including the boosted ones, and in hindsight I think that is an even better swap motor for Fieros than the 3800. Light, powerful, loves to rev, and tons of aftermarket support.

Looking forward to going for a spin in this baby


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #162, 08-08-2016 12:52 PM
      Since I need a dog bone to limit engine movement, I made a custom one. This will not be mounted in the stock Fiero location and it will reside down low.
I'll use this hole for now. I will add a bracket later to create a double shear system.


On this end, I'll need to make a bracket.


Here's my design.


Off comes the engine and transaxle again so I can finish off the cradle.
Gussets added here.


A notch for the AC compressor was required. No biggie.


Dog bone lower mounts.






Here's the cradle completely welded.


Shot of the AC compressor notch. I made it a little bigger purposely.


Then I decided to notch the frame slightly to allow clearance for the F23. Much better.




I will now take a break from welding and add primer and paint to the frame notch. Then it's off to sandblast the cradle and mounting brackets.


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #163, 08-08-2016 05:23 PM
      Your dogbone will be almost totally ineffective.
It's too close to the axle centerline and where it attaches to the cradle it's perpendicular to the direction it needs to be going.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #164, 08-20-2016 01:31 PM
      After sandblasting the cradle, I painted it to match the engine bay. Then I reinstalled the drivetrain.


Here's a few pictures of the clearance the Ecotec in a Fiero provides. Man, this is easy to work on.




I slightly shaved the bottom of three ribs on the F23 for additional trans to cradle clearance.
I did leave some material but it's not that easy to see.




As you can see, the drain plug is still accessible. This will make maintenance easy.


The frame notch worked out well. Clearance is great but very difficult to see in this photo.


Then I decided to remove the springs from the struts and check for full suspension movement.


With the axles installed dry, and with no boots on, I checked travel on both full droop and compression.




At full compression, the passenger side axle just touches the dog bone. I'll address this next week.


Then I painted the PCM black and reinstalled.




Knowing that BMW also uses Getrag transmission's in their cars, finding a suitable clutch hose was easy. If you look at the top left, you can see the part number. (21 52 6 774 267)


Here is the original Cavalier clutch slave and its associated parts. I only need the bleeder, the piece in the middle.


This plugs perfectly into the BMW clutch flex line.


Then install back into the F23. It's a perfect fit and there's no other fittings needed.


As you can see in this picture, the protective sleeve is in the perfect position. This will protect the clutch line from rubbing on the frame. It's like it was meant to be.


Here it is zip tied to the bottom of the frame rail.


I filled the Rodney Dickman clutch master with fresh DOT 3 brake fluid and left the bleeder screw open. After a few minutes, I topped the reservoir up again as the fluid made its way through the line. I closed the bleeder and had my assistant pump the clutch pedal. Within only a few minutes, the system was bled and leak free. It was so easy, a cave man could do it. It's nice having one of my three pedals working.

Note: In my application, these components (RD clutch master and F23 slave cylinder) play well together. Other swaps, with F23 conversions, may need a spacer between the pressure plate and slave cylinder to prevent the slave from over-extending.


Will (william.lucke@gmail.com) MSG #165, 08-21-2016 11:51 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Lunatic:

Knowing that BMW also uses Getrag transmission's in their cars, finding a suitable clutch hose was easy. If you look at the top left, you can see the part number. (21 52 6 774 267)


Here is the original Cavalier clutch slave and its associated parts. I only need the bleeder, the piece in the middle.




Interesting find.
http://www.realoem.com/bmw/...MW_M3&diagId=21_0094



Do you have the part number for the F23 bleeder gizmo?


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #166, 08-21-2016 04:06 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Will:

Do you have the part number for the F23 bleeder gizmo?



Will,

The bleeder is not available for purchase separately. It must be purchased as an assembly and comes with the components as seen in this photo.
Should you need one, I have a used one that I can send you.
The Dorman part number is: CM640069

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 08-21-2016).]

Sage (sgwfiberglass@gmail.com) MSG #167, 08-21-2016 11:28 PM
      Great build, progress and documentation!

Don't understand why this is not in the construction zone already.

Keep posting the updates, another one of the "great" build threads!


HAGO!


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #168, 09-04-2016 08:22 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Sage:

Great build, progress and documentation!

Don't understand why this is not in the construction zone already.

Keep posting the updates, another one of the "great" build threads!


HAGO!

Thanks for the compliments Sage. Here's a little update for those following.

I kept busy by cleaning the throttle body.




Now that it's clean, I reinstalled onto the engine. While close to the firewall, there is still clearance to run a 90° elbow in this area.


The stock four cylinder throttle cable fits into the Ecotec throttle bracket. Woot woot.


Surprisingly, the stock throttle cable slid into place. I suppose I could've cut the end down slightly but I decided to leave it. I verified WOT (wide open throttle) by having an assistant depress the throttle in the car. The throttle blade opened to the max. It's like it was meant to be.








Since my car came with a pin switch to operate the trunk light, I didn't like the look of it. So I removed it. The newer cars came with the trunk switch in the latch/striker area. I liked the look of that better and found the appropriate switch. What I needed was a good ground to the release solenoid. I removed the harness and added a dedicated ground wire.






Then I drilled a hole in the firewall to pass this new trunk wire assembly into the cabin.


I'll have to clean this up and secure it.


I moved on to wiring the new trunk circuit as well. It sure is nice to have an operational trunk release and trunk ajar light working. With having said that, I was still missing the trunk light though. I decided against putting the stock trunk light bulb back into operation. That little sucker gets hot! With having a tackle box full of odds and ends, I decided to build an LED light assembly. I re-purposed a few things and here's what I came up with.














While it's difficult to take a photo of an LED light, I turned out the basement light and this is the best shot that I could come up with. If it's bright enough to light up the ceiling, it'll be good enough to shine light into my trunk.





Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #169, 10-09-2016 01:00 PM
      A few remaining wiring tasks for my swap involved wiring up the BCM (body control module) and modifying the A/C circuit. Let's discuss the BCM first. The only circuit on the BCM that I was interested in was the interior light control. In this case, it softly dims the interior lighting after closing the doors, like many new cars do. It also puts the interior lights on a timer. This is a nice feature. For example, when cleaning the car and leaving the doors open, the BCM turns off the interior lights after a preset amount of time. I chose to wire in this feature only. The BCM I'm using is part number: 22682857. This is just a plain BCM and it didn't come with the key-less entry feature.


Since there were many places that I'd have to tap into, I chose to remove the dash. This BCM requires several points of power and these came from a few different circuits. Some require full time power while others need key-on or accessory power. The back side of the fuse panel was chosen for all my power taps. In this manner, all BCM circuits are protected by fuses.

After the primary battery, accessory power and ground was wired to the BCM, it was then time to redirect the power and return for the courtesy and dome lighting to the BCM.

Note: S (ex, S210) stands for a splice location in the harness and C (C200) stands for connector.
I needed to cut the courtesy and reading light supply (orange wire) to make this work.
1) Follow the driver's side courtesy light (orange wire) to the S210 splice location in the harness and cut it leaving an inch or so before the connector. I chose to cut the wire on the “main harness” side.


2) Follow the orange wire coming from the dome/reading lights back to the C200 connector under the dash at the extreme left, upper forward corner. Cut this wire a few inches before it goes into the connector.

Join the orange wire “going to the dome lights”, at the S210, together with the orange wire “going to the courtesy lights”. Attach another wire and run this to the blue connector, pin A10 (Inadvertent Power Control) on the BCM.

This now leaves two orange wires that were previously cut. Extend the orange wire, coming from the C200, (that used to feed the dome/reading lights), to the orange wire that previously fed the courtesy lights (S210 splice location). Join these two wires together and add another length of wire. This goes to the BCM blue connector, pin A12. In reality, the Fiero courtesy light fuse is now feeding pin A12 at the BCM.


Another circuit that needs to be modified to make this all work.
At connector C209, there are two white wires. One goes to the passenger side and this is the one you want to cut. This white wire goes to the Fiero dimmer switch. Cut it around an inch from the connector. Extend this white wire and attach to the BCM brown connector, pin A1 (Courtesy Lamp Control). The other end is no longer used and should be capped.


Having now wired the the interior light's feed from the BCM, I must complete the circuit and add the return path.

Here is the S304 factory splice in the harness. It has four white wires acting as a node. (A place where two or more wires are attached.)


We need to separate these as follows.
Cut the single white wire, from the node, that goes to the right.
This wire leads to the right door jamb switch.
Solder a light blue wire to this white wire (that goes to the right door pin switch) and attach to BCM purple connector, pin A8.

Of the three remaining white wires, one goes to the left door jamb switch.
Follow/trace the correct white wire and cut it at the node.
Solder a light green/black wire to this white wire (that goes to the left door pin) and attach to BCM purple connector, pin A7.

You now have two white wires from the node. These are the courtesy and dome lamp returns.
Solder both of these together and add a length of white wire to this node.
Attach this to the BCM brown connector, pin A1. (Courtesy Light Control.)

At this point, the BCM now turns on and controls the courtesy and dome lights.



To deal with the A/C, I will need to modify the Fiero circuit slightly. Since I'm adapting a newer technology Delphi CVC-6 compressor to an older car, I need to make sure they play together nicely. This will be easily accomplished.
Here is the stock Fiero low pressure switch.


For testing reasons, I removed this connector from the pressure switch and jumped the two wires together. This is to make sure I have power in the HVAC control head and relay. Again, only for test purposes.


I'm doing this because the Ecotec PCM will now control the compressor cycling operations. I will also add in the three-wire pressure sensor to the high side line near the compressor. This must be done for safety reasons. The PCM uses this sensor reading to determine how to control idle speeds, radiator fan operation and A/C compressor clutch operation when the A/C system is turned on.
Note: the PCM will not enable the A/C clutch without having this sensor in place. From a safety stand point, this circuit also protects the A/C compressor. When you get into power enrichment, the PCM de-energizes the relay which turns off the compressor. Thus, saving it from over-speeding.

I then made a little bracket to hold the antenna parallel to the ground. Seeing as I shaved the antenna hole in the fender, this was my solution. I'm sure it's not the greatest position for an antenna to be in, but I use the auxiliary input more than I listen to the radio.


While I was in that general area, I also added new metal to support the passenger's side lower fender. One hole and a little primer/paint, it'll be good again.


Then it was time to get greasy. New CV joint grease was applied to all four joints followed by new clamps. Prior to installing the axles into the car, I installed new axle seals into the F23.
Napa part number: 13750.


I reclaimed this factory GM security unit from the Cavalier that I had here, GM part number: 10953186 .
It's a simple device that requires a fob to be swiped in order for the starter to engage. This will work well for my application and is all I need/want.




Lastly, I picked up a used 130 amp DC TIG welder. It's a portable Thermal Dynamics unit that only welds steel. I tried it and it works well but I will give it a good cleaning before it goes into service.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 10-21-2017).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #170, 11-01-2016 05:37 AM
      I took advantage of the warmer weather and decided to apply undercoating to the bottom of the car. It looks way better and I like the full coverage.
Knowing that I also sprayed it above the coolant lines is piece of mind.

I then installed a new thermostat, water log housing and exhaust manifold.


As well as the exhaust manifold heat shield and oxygen sensor.


I cleaned up the belt tensioner and installed it. At this point, I'll just order a short belt to run the alternator. After I test it that is.
I'll wait until the spring to get the A/C lines made up and hook up the air conditioning at that point.


The 88 coolant tubes that I had weren't perfect by any means. The driver's side was okay but the passenger side was kinked.
After cutting out the kinked section, I just took a stainless sleeve that I had and TIG welded it in place.






Since I gave the stock steering wheel away, I needed to find a suitable replacement. Before I scrapped my wife's Cavalier, I removed a few parts from it. One of those was the steering wheel.
After looking at the pile of H-body parts that I have, I removed the spider from the horn sounder.
FYI, I also have a Southern '79 Monza Spyder sitting in wait.


And swapped it for the Chevy emblem on the Cavalier wheel. After a clean up, I think it'll fit the bill. It now has sentimental value too.


Off topic but I also laser cut and formed a key chain holder for a friend. He's a Jeep guy as you can see.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #171, 11-19-2016 12:02 PM
      The original fuel lines were old, deteriorated and needed to be replaced. I decided it best to install nylon fuel lines. I had several feet here and, of course, I had to drop the fuel tank. Ugh.

As you can see, this is the original pressure, return and vent lines on the 88 tank.
I will have to modify two of these. I'll leave the vent line as is.


I removed these 90° fittings from the donor car but you can get these at your local auto parts place.


The item on the left is the pressure line that I cut off the tank.
I used a 3/8" compression fitting and adapted the newer line as seen.


The same procedure was used for the return line with the exception of using a 5/16" compression fitting. Voila!


Here, the fuel tank was reinstalled and the new nylon lines were clicked into place.
I'll secure and tidy the wiring up later in the day.


I decided to use a fuel filter from a 95 Cadillac DeVille with the Northstar engine.
I liked the fact that it had both ends made for the quick release nylon lines.


A view showing the filter and line routing. I still need to make brackets to hold the filter and lines.


Here's a view showing the fuel lines where they connect to the engine.
Note: These will get wrapped in a heat-resistant sleeve.
In time, I might relocate them to the other side of the engine for a cleaner look. Until then, this is where they'll stay.


I kept the original stainless lines because of the schrader valve. This way, I can verify and relieve the fuel pressure.


After putting in $20 worth of fuel and cycling the ignition a few times, I can verify the following:
-The Walbro fuel pump works as intended.
-The Frankenstein fuel sending unit works perfectly.
-All fuel line connections are leak-free.

As an added benefit, there are no 90° fittings in this fuel system.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #172, 11-20-2016 07:07 PM
      On a cold Sunday afternoon in November, I installed four new spark plugs, plugged in the PCM and turned the ignition key.

Gimme fuel, gimme fire, gimme that which I desire.....

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 11-20-2016).]

Quad Raider (richard.clark@newson6.net) MSG #173, 11-20-2016 07:20 PM
      Congratulations! Been a while since a checked your thread so it's cool to see such a significant update.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #174, 11-21-2016 07:13 AM
      I'd like to add this little bit of electrical information to those interested/following this L61 Ecotec swap.

My engine runs on the stock PCM. At this point, the only thing done to the PCM was VATS (Vehicle Anti Theft System), was turned off using HP Tuners software.

While I chose to install the BCM (Body Control Module), I only wired up the interior light control circuit.

The stock 12576162 PCM can run the Ecotec with the following subsystems removed.
-EBCM (Electronic Brake Control Module)
-Instrument panel cluster
-Inflatable restraint sensing and diagnostic module
-Passlock lock cylinder
-Radio
-Vehicle communication interface module

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 11-24-2016).]

wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #175, 11-21-2016 06:43 PM
      Awesome to hear it run . Congrats on making it in the Construction Zone .Long overdue ....

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #176, 01-14-2017 02:07 PM
      Despite having a throttle body that is both tilted, and in close proximity to the rear window, making a cold air intake was surprisingly simple.

I started with a silicone transition elbow from Vibrant Performance. It had one end 2.75" and the other at 3".


After a little trimming, here is what it looked like.


I had to remove the throttle cable holder and clearance it as well. You can see the original versus the one that I cut down.


Then, I placed some loom to prevent chafing.


After seeing the elbow cleared, I took the old antenna and formed it into a pattern for the intake tube.



I went into my local Midas Muffler, bought a piece of 3" aluminized tubing and used their bender.
This is the result.


As you can see, it fits well. I then drilled two holes. One for the IAT sensor and one for the fuel pressure regulator vacuum.


From this photo, you can see the air filter.
Note: I still need to add a bracket to hold the intake tube secure.



Then came time for some exhaust work.
Using these components, I made a system. It's tucked up tight and fits well.
Note: Yes it's loud! Too loud. I'll have to find some short mufflers.


A view of the shortest catalytic converter that I had.


Underside view.


Cadillac STS tailpipes loosely installed.





Since the car starts and runs, it's now time to make it shift.
Here is the issue that I encountered. The shift arm is placed at an angle that doesn't work for me.


While others have had custom cables made, I chose a different approach.
I wanted to utilize the stock 84 four speed shift and select cables.
I removed the shift assembly from the F23.


Then disassembled.


Here is the stock shifter base.


I made a CAD drawing and cut it on the laser.


Then I cut off the boss for the select shift lever.


Here are the new and old pieces side-by-side.


As you can see, I also made two new arms for the select lever operation.


Since my base plate is steel, I can weld my arms wherever I feel they're best suited.


After some measuring, I filled the original dowel hole with weld. I then drilled a new hole in order to clock my shift arm into a better suited position.


Of course the F23 ball stud didn't fit the 84 shift cable.


Here, I removed the original F23 ball stud.


Drilled and tapped the hole to the pitch of the original 84 Muncie ball stud.


Here is the 84 ball stud on the F23 shift arm.
Note: I removed some material from the weight for clearance.


While I did install a nut, it might have to be replaced with a thinner one for clearance.


New base is installed.
I've used the original base, since it has the seal, and installed my new steel plate over top.
There is a small gap that will be filled prior to final installation.


Followed by the re-clocked shift arm.
While it looks close, the weight on the left actually clears the frame rail.


The shift cable has to fit in this vicinity.


That lead me into a way to mount the cables. Back to the drawing board, I ended up with this revised design.


I now have room to secure the shift and select cables.


Simple angle iron turned into the cable holders. Easy peasy.


It looks like this will work for the shift cable.


In the last photo, the cable was mounted too high.
This is far better as it allows full range of motion from the shifter.
Note: I'll mill slots into the angle iron thus allowing adjustability and fine tuning of both shift and select cables.






The stock 84 cables clear everything just fine.




motoracer838 (jmartin@musicunveiled.com) MSG #177, 01-21-2017 09:57 AM
      Nice work on your swap, that's a great find on the clutch hose, I assume it's a metric bubble flare on the other end...

Joe


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #178, 01-22-2017 07:59 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by motoracer838:

Nice work on your swap, that's a great find on the clutch hose, I assume it's a metric bubble flare on the other end...

Joe



Hey Joe.

Thanks for the compliment.
I work on Porsche, BMW, Audi and VW vehicles on a daily basis. Finding the clutch hose wasn't too difficult. If I recall, it came off a fourth generation E46 chassis. I then seen an X3 that had a similar looking hose.
To answer your question, yes, it required a bubble flare on the hard line.

Here's a few cars that I work on in any given day.








Stubby79 MSG #179, 01-24-2017 11:15 AM
      Those are some nice cars. You must really like Fieros!

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #180, 07-02-2017 07:13 AM
      Today, I had one mission in mind; finish the cooling system.
This started by installing the coolant tubes. Since my original clamps were rusted and I didn't trust using them, I made my own.
For the middle, I used these. Simple 16 gauge made at home and painted.


I wrapped the coolant tubes with a piece of rubber hose followed by a little hockey tape to keep in together while I clamped it into place.






For the front, I merely used some "P" clamps and a little rubber to keep things snug. Perfect.


To keep hoses from slipping off, I had to replicate the beads that hold them in place. This was as easy as re-purposing an old set of Vicegrip pliers.
I used a washer and welded it to the Vicegrips as shown.


I also created a relief in the opposing jaw. This gives the metal somewhere to go when forming the bead.






I sacrificed a spare 84 coolant tube. I've since installed the 88 ones on my car.


Here I cut off a piece to test with.


As you can see, the end result turned out rather well. I can now rest assured knowing my coolant hoses will not slip off.




Moving on, I used this exploded view and decided to copy the setup on my swap.
Despite both cars using crossflow rads, the inlets and outlets were not identical.
I solved this by crossing over the coolant lines and following the Ecotec design.


Here is the stock setup.


A few hoses and fittings.




After forming a bead on both ends, this tube was used as shown.


The left upper rad hose is just a 90° bearing the Topran part number: 102 721 586
The other end in a Northstar hose that I cut to fit. AC Delco part number: 26252X.


I needed a way to get coolant from the expansion tank at the back of the car to the front. Here, a simple VW Tee fitting was used.


The bottom crossover was kind of the same. I used a few sections from the old coolant tube and created this.
I know, it looks like a plumbing fitting for a sink. It clears the swaybar and it fits well.


The lower rad hose is part number: 8754.






Now that the front was taken care of, I moved on to the rear of the car. My local Napa auto parts allowed me to look through their hose selection.
I found hoses that looked like they would work with minimal modification. Here's what I ended up with.

The left side of the engine consisted of these two part numbers: 72174 and 8246.


They then created this monstrosity.








I took part of the 84 coolant tube and used it on the passenger's side. It clears the trailing arm well.






The right side looked like this by joining these two hoses together. Part numbers: 8942 and 8754.










This is the Cavalier expansion tank. It fits well in this unused space and is the highest point in the system. I now will fill the coolant and bleed the air from the system.


I also picked up a damaged Honda VFR800 for free. I'm not sure if I'll repair it or part it out.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 07-02-2017).]

Tony Kania MSG #181, 07-02-2017 12:13 PM
      Coolant pipe bead tool.

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #182, 07-22-2017 06:43 AM
      While walking around the salvage yard, I spotted a fastback. Some parts have previously been removed. However, there were still some good parts left. I removed the steering wheel, the vapour canister, trunk seals and a spare shifter cable. Most of which will make their way onto my car.








After that excursion, I took the time to double check all my hoses and connections. Knowing all was tight, I filled the cooling system.
For those with the 2.2 Ecotec, the thermostat goes into the housing first, followed by the plastic sleeve. Orientation as shown.


I was very pleased to finally have coolant in my car. I let it run for around a hour. In that time, I checked for fan operation, leaks, and weirdness. All is well, I called it a day.
For the record, I used an Airlift device to fill the cooling system. It works perfect and is highly recommended.


wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #183, 07-22-2017 10:56 AM
      Looking really good. If I wasnt so lazy I would copy some of the stuff you have done. I had time today to take a picture of my overflow bottle setup. The original hoses were printed on them where they went. So I just copied that .The large hose and one of the small hoses go back to the engine, the big one on the hose that has the tee on it and the small one to the fitting on the cyl head. The other hose I put to the puke tank fitting on the Fiero rad. Worked great at a hot track day on Thursday in Grand Bend.

The hose under the tank cap is just open to the ground. I should put another catch can under that I suppose.

[This message has been edited by wftb (edited 07-22-2017).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #184, 10-29-2017 06:14 AM
      I needed to quiet down the exhaust as having just a catalytic converter with two resonators was way too loud. I ordered up a simple F-body muffler and some bits and pieces to make all this quieter.




While many of you have a full exhaust and and an uncut trunk, great. I just decided it would be best to remove the lower section of the trunk. The added room was welcome. Besides, I don't travel heavy and I won't miss the space.
A Sawzall makes quick work of this.


Now, I chose to notch the rear cradle crossmember as I wanted the muffler canted forward.
Here we go. Chop, cut, rebuild.








Here's a few pictures of the trunkectomy.








With all this room, I now had the ability to create a full exhaust system.
Here is it taking shape.












It fits well and I like the look. I removed some Cadillac STS exhaust tips and added them to my car.
They are the only chrome item on the car. I might paint them black after the car gets painted, we'll see.




An inner view.


A worm's eye view of the exhaust.




Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #185, 11-19-2017 07:28 AM
      Today, I spent some time working on electrical.
My power mirror switch backing plate was very loose and not making good contact. I cut one from a parts car and installed. Both power mirrors now work.
One more item checked off the "to do" list.


As you know, I've swapped in a 2.2 Ecotec into this car. Since I'm using the stock PCM and BCM, and not the Cavalier cluster, I needed to make the Equus aftermarket tachometer work with the Ecotec. Here's how I did it.

By looking at the 2003 Cavalier wiring schematic, a tachometer trigger signal is sent by the PCM through the serial data line and to the cluster where it's converted.
Since I'm not using the Cavalier cluster, I had to go about this another way.

Looking at the PID value charts was useless as it merely states, "Not Used" on several pins.


By using an oscilloscope, each pin labeled "not used" was checked.
Success was present when pin 32 on the blue connector showed an open collector output for a tachometer.

Since I had an aftermarket tach that doesn't have an internal "pull-up" resistor, I had to add one.
Note: I didn't have a 1K ohm (1000) resistor handy but I had some 1.2K (1200) ohm resistors in my collection.

The pull-up resistor pulls the open (collector) output up to +12V.
When the output transistor turns on, its collector terminal is connected to ground.
Hence the output is a square wave from near-ground to near +12V.

Here's the schematic that made it all work, simple really.
Note: My PCM part # is: 12576162




Since pin 32 was not used, there was no wire coming from the connector. I took another PCM harness pig tail and removed a white wire.


Remove the turquoise clip and unlock the connector.


This leads to exposed terminals and wires. I took a white wire just because.


On the car, I had to undo the clip and disassemble the connector.


Since cavity 32 was unused, I had to drill a small hole in order to place the connector through.
Here, you can clearly see the white wire protruding from cavity 32 on the blue connector.


I extended this new white wire to the stock Fiero harness.
I then chose to add the pull-up resistor in the back of the instrument cluster.
In this location, I could tap into the two electrical points that I needed.
-The green wire is the tach signal wire.
-The resistor is then attached to the signal wire and the opposite end attaches to a keyed-on +12V.


A little video to show that it actually works.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 11-19-2017).]

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #186, 02-04-2018 07:38 AM
      Having cut the bottom of my trunk out, I now needed to fill the hole back in.
After a brief session with AutoCAD, I now had a trunk floor.


A few minutes spent on the laser yielded the following component made from 16 gauge steel.


I needed to weld in a piece of light angle in order to support the rear trunk floor.


Here's the piece welded in.
For those that don't like counting, there were 98 holes that I had to plug weld.


Liberal application of seam sealer followed.


While I still need to paint the trunk floor, it'll have to wait for a warmer day.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 02-06-2018).]

wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #187, 02-04-2018 11:00 AM
      Great work Shayne. I was looking at that GT in your picture at your scrapyard. Very surprised that no one has taken the fastback clip off of it and it looks like the whole body is in decent shape. Have a good one Steve



Rickady88GT (rjkmfam@sbcglobal.net) MSG #188, 02-04-2018 02:31 PM
      Very cool and inspirational stuff thanks for sharing it in such detail.
I love the CNC stuff.
Great job.


Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #189, 05-06-2018 08:03 AM
      I now have a fully operational shifter. Woo hoo!

I wanted to use off-the-shelf parts for this modification. In this case, I'm referring to the stock '84 shift and select cables.

I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Here's my revised base plate.


To which, I've welded on other components.
Here's the select cable bracket.


I also needed a select arm lever. Triangulation at its finest.


Some parts off the laser.


I had to utilize the pivot and ball studs from the original F23 assembly.


Not seen in the photo but the factory rubber isolator was removed and a bronze bushing was made on the lathe. This took up most of the slop in the shifter.
Here's the final product all painted and ready to install.


Here, the stock '84 shift and select cables were siamesed for a little extra slack.


This slack will be welcome when it comes time to remove the oil filter cartridge assembly on the Ecotec.


The result? Is a fully operational shifter.


svt4me (svt4me@gmail.com) MSG #190, 08-07-2018 09:45 PM
      Unreal. Awesome work. Following.

longjonsilver (longjonsilver34@juno.com) MSG #191, 08-09-2018 11:01 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by Stubby79:

Those are some nice cars. You must really like Fieros!
Perhaps it is BECAUSE he works on Brainless Money Wasters and WunderWagens that he doesn't want to actually own one.


 
quote
Originally posted by wftb:Great work Shayne. I was looking at that GT in your picture at your scrapyard. Very surprised that no one has taken the fastback clip off of it and it looks like the whole body is in decent shape. Have a good one Steve
It appears to me that Fiero parts are easy to get in southern Ontario. i had been looking for a rocker panel for like forever, and finally got one (free) while on a trip thru Toronto to Guelph. Perhaps the market is totally saturated with Fiero parts while the number of Fiero hotrodders is decreasing. Anyway, a great time to pick up parts for our cars.
jon


turbo86se (jstup301@gmail.com) MSG #192, 08-13-2018 09:34 AM
      It looks like '88 coolant tubes will work with the earlier Fieros? From the way they bend towards the radiator, will a front mount battery box work?

Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #193, 08-15-2018 06:37 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by turbo86se:

It looks like '88 coolant tubes will work with the earlier Fieros? From the way they bend towards the radiator, will a front mount battery box work?


Yes, the '88 coolant tubes work on the earlier cars. I can't comment on whether or not a front mounted battery box will work or not. I mounted my battery under the right front headlight assembly. Perhaps another member will chime in and answer your question.


longjonsilver (longjonsilver34@juno.com) MSG #194, 09-12-2018 12:38 PM
      Looking at your engine mount, i see that you are using a single mount. My duke motor also has a single mount, and it depends on the dogbone to hold it from rattling fore and aft. Because of this it has worn our numerous dogbones, including the poly one that i have in there now. i would like to go with a double engine mount like some use on the 3800 swap. Could a double engine mount be used on the Ecotec block?
thanks
jon



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #195, 09-12-2018 08:21 PM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by longjonsilver:

Looking at your engine mount, i see that you are using a single mount. My duke motor also has a single mount, and it depends on the dogbone to hold it from rattling fore and aft. Because of this it has worn our numerous dogbones, including the poly one that i have in there now. i would like to go with a double engine mount like some use on the 3800 swap. Could a double engine mount be used on the Ecotec block?
thanks
jon



I'm using one lower mount, under the oil pan, and also a diagonal brace that triangulates from the cylinder head to the cradle. This along with the two poly transaxle mounts, keeps everything secure. I'd have to take a look at the spare Ecotec that I have sitting here in order to determine if there's a decent spot to run two dog bone mounts securely. There's always the option of using four mounts, two on the transaxle and two on the engine in a colinear placement. This will most certainly not require the use of any dog bones. If I pull the Ecotec out and go with something bigger, think V8, then I'll go that route.


longjonsilver (longjonsilver34@juno.com) MSG #196, 10-01-2018 09:27 PM
      i'm going to be heading out to the junkyard tomorrow to pull a booster off a 97 GMC Sonoma. i like the way that you swapped out the rod and the bracket to make a frankenbooster. i think that i might try the same. Your writeup is really well done, and is inspiring me to make this change. i also might put my battery in under the passenger headlight. All of this once i take the car off the road, because i don't want to be rushed, and i don't want to limit my driving in the next 30 days- i take it off the road the end of October. i pulled 1/2 a headlight harness today from an 87 and 1/2 from an 86, because someone cut the 87 harness that i need to install my Gen 2 headlight motors. i get to join the two together. My passenger motor in my 84 messed up and now i raise and lower it by hand. Don't wanna do that next year. So i get to do the booster, the battery, the headlight harness, and i just put in a 3 core radiator, gotta pull it to install the headlight harness. Question: can you tell just by looking if the guts of the junkyard booster are good?

jon



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #197, 10-02-2018 06:55 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by longjonsilver:

i'm going to be heading out to the junkyard tomorrow to pull a booster off a 97 GMC Sonoma. i like the way that you swapped out the rod and the bracket to make a frankenbooster. i think that i might try the same. Your writeup is really well done, and is inspiring me to make this change. i also might put my battery in under the passenger headlight. All of this once i take the car off the road, because i don't want to be rushed, and i don't want to limit my driving in the next 30 days- i take it off the road the end of October. i pulled 1/2 a headlight harness today from an 87 and 1/2 from an 86, because someone cut the 87 harness that i need to install my Gen 2 headlight motors. i get to join the two together. My passenger motor in my 84 messed up and now i raise and lower it by hand. Don't wanna do that next year. So i get to do the booster, the battery, the headlight harness, and i just put in a 3 core radiator, gotta pull it to install the headlight harness. Question: can you tell just by looking if the guts of the junkyard booster are good?

jon



Jon,

You're making some good choices on you mods for your Fiero. The gen two headlight motors are nice and I too might go that route. There are still Fieros in some of the salvage yards that I frequent.

As for finding a decent vacuum booster, look for the nicest, shiniest one that the salvage yard has. Heck, if it's still in the vehicle, and the engine is intact, you might even hear the vacuum leak out once you remove the vacuum line. That means it holds vacuum and isn't leaking. That's always a good sign.

I used what I had here. In essence, you could also purchase a brand new one and modify it. I don't think they're too expensive. Good luck with your mods over the winter.


longjonsilver (longjonsilver34@juno.com) MSG #198, 10-03-2018 09:57 PM
      i found a GMC Sonoma 1997 with a good looking power booster. i noticed that in all the S10s and Blazers that i looked at, many had the master cylinders missing, but the power boosters were ALL there. That tells me that power boosters don't fail often, and if i get a bad one, i will need one for a core anyway, and the core charge is higher than the junkyard price. i reason like this: a different (S10) wheel caliper weighs more and that is unsprung weight. There is no reason fro street driving to have vented rotors, because i don't use my brakes that much and don't drive on hills a lot. So the only thing that will give me better brakes is more pressure at the wheel calipers, which means a bigger booster. i went down this road and then came across your frankenbooster mod, well before i learned about the 100$ brake thread. It rang a bell of truth to me - and i want better brakes.


i have been soldering my frankenharness together, something like 25 solder joints in the main harness, and someone cut off all the marker lights and turn signals so i need to pull some electrical fittings so i don't have to cut into my 84 harness if i don't have too. That makes another 10 solder joints, at least my frankenharness will have two horn wires.

i see on Kijiji that there are lots of ecotecs for sale cheap. One guy in alberta wants only 200 for the complete thing - wiring harness, computer, clutch, transaxel, alternator etc. i question the condition tho. Still think i will hold out for a 2.4 that will hold up better to a supercharger. Still it is very tempting as my duke is burning a lot of oil. Like a quart every 1000kilometers. Thats a lot! Runs pretty good tho, so no rush. Maybe not this winter but next winter possibly. i also have to replace my dew wipes and sew another seat for the drivers side, replace the condensers in my tach board, and in my delay wiper board. While the door skin is off i need to repair my passenger side door handle, and fight rattles. Possibly the drivers side door pins too. Radio cassette needs repair. That'll keep me busy this winter.

jon



wftb (danjesso@bmts.com) MSG #199, 10-03-2018 10:39 PM
      Whenever I am looking for a new to me engine, I go to the OARA (ontario automobile recyclers association) website and do a search. When I got the eco that is in my car now, there were about 300 available at various yards around Ontario. I used the same search engine to pick up like new factory alloy wheels for my Focus and my youngest son's Honda Fit.

longjonsilver (longjonsilver34@juno.com) MSG #200, 10-11-2018 01:32 PM
      i am attempting to duplicate your frankenbooster. i went to the scrap yard and pulled a booster off a 95 GMC Sonoma 4cyl, 2wheel drive, rear drum brake model. i have found when attempting the conversion that there is a hole in the bottom due to a rust spot, that was not visible until i began cleaning it. Will this hole negate my vacuum?



Also i have had trouble pulling the snap ring off the Fiero plunger, but i took off the washer thingy off the back and removed the whole plastic cylinder with the plunger in it. i think that it just might fit into the Sonoma booster. How in the world did you get that snap ring off down deep in the hole of the cylinder?



Do you think that my idea will work?
thanks
jon

edit: since the booster is in vacuum (it is in vacuum no?) couldn't i repair the hole by cleaning well with a wire brush and sandpaper and solvent, and then use JB weld? The vacuum will be sucking in the repair, not pushing it out. ;-)



Lunatic (shaynes@rogers.com) MSG #201, 10-12-2018 06:52 AM
     
 
quote
Originally posted by longjonsilver:

i have found when attempting the conversion that there is a hole in the bottom due to a rust spot, that was not visible until i began cleaning it. Will this hole negate my vacuum?

How in the world did you get that snap ring off down deep in the hole of the cylinder?

thanks
jon

edit: since the booster is in vacuum (it is in vacuum no?) couldn't i repair the hole by cleaning well with a wire brush and sandpaper and solvent, and then use JB weld? The vacuum will be sucking in the repair, not pushing it out. ;-)


Jon,
I did mention to look for the nicest, cleanest booster that you could. And this is exactly the reason why.
We cannot have any leaks in the booster or else it will not work as intended.

A quick run down on booster operation.
The purpose of a brake assist unit is to decrease brake pedal effort without decreasing braking forces. This assist allows for less pedal travel and drastically reduces driver fatigue when operating. The vacuum brake assist uses engine vacuum and controlled atmospheric pressure to apply mechanical force to the primary master cylinder piston.

1) In the "released position", we're in a vacuum suspended mode. The vacuum port is open, the atmospheric port is closed and the return spring keeps the booster in the home position.
2) In the "applied position", the vacuum port is closed, and the atmospheric port opens. This happens only when the pedal is moving downward.
3) In the "holding position", the vacuum port and the atmospheric ports are both closed.

When the brakes are released, the booster returns to a suspended mode. To get there, the following happens.
-Foot pedal pressure is released.
-Vacuum port opens.
-The atmospheric port stays closed.
-Engine ingests the filtered air from the rear chamber.
-Return spring pushes the booster to the home position.

With where your hole is, you'll be losing vacuum and allowing in unfiltered atmospheric air. Both of which are not good. Remember, there are huge forces in the booster.

Take the rear shell to someone with a welder and weld the hole shut or find a better booster.

As for the circlip, I have a decent set of snap ring pliers. If you choose to use an awl or pick to dislodge the clip, there's a good chance that you'll deform the clip. You should always replace circlips, they almost always deform to some extent.

[This message has been edited by Lunatic (edited 10-12-2018).]