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Automatic Bummer - Need Cheering Up by Texaslawman
Started on: 05-20-2010 04:09 AM
Replies: 21
Last post by: Tinton on 05-21-2010 06:30 PM
Texaslawman
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Report this Post05-20-2010 04:09 AM Click Here to See the Profile for TexaslawmanSend a Private Message to TexaslawmanDirect Link to This Post
I bought an 85 GT on eBay for cheap with a spare engine/tranny mounted on a spare cradle. I started working on the engine and thought I would convert the car to a manual while I had the engine out. After researching, I found its going to be very difficult and expensive without a manual donor, which I don't have the room (or the cash) for, even if I could find one. Now I'm bummed out because I'm stuck with an automatic. Am I going to be happy with an auto Fiero, or should I just give up and end it all?
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87antuzzi
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Report this Post05-20-2010 04:22 AM Click Here to See the Profile for 87antuzziClick Here to Email 87antuzziSend a Private Message to 87antuzziDirect Link to This Post
Dude. Autos are not bad. I have a auto and dont want to swap in a trans. I have the stuff to do it too. A auto fiero will still spin a doughnut and you dont have to replace a clutch.
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Jake_Dragon
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Report this Post05-20-2010 05:30 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
For a daily driver an auto isn't bad at all. But I love my 5 speed and wouldn't want to go back to an auto unless I had to.
Depending on the money you have to spend you could go with a newer 6 speed.
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pete 2m4
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Report this Post05-20-2010 06:24 AM Click Here to See the Profile for pete 2m4Click Here to Email pete 2m4Send a Private Message to pete 2m4Direct Link to This Post
a fiero is a fiero no matter what tranny. you will love it. they are a pleasure to drive and own!!!!
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ltlfrari
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Report this Post05-20-2010 07:19 AM Click Here to See the Profile for ltlfrariClick Here to visit ltlfrari's HomePageClick Here to Email ltlfrariSend a Private Message to ltlfrariDirect Link to This Post
Now that I've finally gotten my 3 speed auto in my 88 duke power Fiero shifting propery it's ok to drive. Not great but it's ok and it can keep up with traffic so I cannot complain. My 85 4 speed stick is fine. Not up to modern standards but pretty nifty. so I guess a v6 auto is going to come somewhere between the two. There are times when I miss an auto in the Fiero (I drive the stick mostly). Heavy traffic and a 25 year old stick is not a lot of fun after a while!
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SMTHGT
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Report this Post05-20-2010 09:21 AM Click Here to See the Profile for SMTHGTSend a Private Message to SMTHGTDirect Link to This Post
I have a Automatic and a V8... Autos put the power down to the ground better IMO...

------------------
SMTHGT.....
Steve
Aka. "SmoothGT"
1987 GT 4.9L~V8~4T60E
(Un.Su.)

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TXGOOD
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Report this Post05-20-2010 10:04 AM Click Here to See the Profile for TXGOODClick Here to visit TXGOOD's HomePageSend a Private Message to TXGOODDirect Link to This Post
The trouble I found in my 85 GT 3-speed was when trying to accelerate fast, the V-6 starts running out of power before the tranny wants to shift out of 1st.
Once it goes into 2nd it pulls pretty good, but for driving around the city in stop and go it was great.
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MstangsBware
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Report this Post05-20-2010 10:57 AM Click Here to See the Profile for MstangsBwareClick Here to Email MstangsBwareSend a Private Message to MstangsBwareDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Texaslawman:

I bought an 85 GT on eBay for cheap with a spare engine/tranny mounted on a spare cradle. I started working on the engine and thought I would convert the car to a manual while I had the engine out. After researching, I found its going to be very difficult and expensive without a manual donor, which I don't have the room (or the cash) for, even if I could find one. Now I'm bummed out because I'm stuck with an automatic. Am I going to be happy with an auto Fiero, or should I just give up and end it all?


Auto on a 2.8 is a bummer...auto on a 3800SC then you are cooking......You don't need alot of parts to make it work....I have a pedal set, clutch line and some used slave/master cylinders that can be rebuilt if you want them. Of course that leaves the tranny unless you already have one. The trip up to the dallas area might not be worth it though....
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Jake_Dragon
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Report this Post05-20-2010 03:22 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by SMTHGT:

I have a Automatic and a V8... Autos put the power down to the ground better IMO...



Lets not blame your inability to shift gears and work the clutch at the same time on the transmission. LOL
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pontiackid86
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Report this Post05-20-2010 03:48 PM Click Here to See the Profile for pontiackid86Click Here to Email pontiackid86Send a Private Message to pontiackid86Direct Link to This Post
Theres nothing like a 4 or 5 speed fiero but autos get the job done just as well.
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Texaslawman
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Report this Post05-20-2010 04:47 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TexaslawmanSend a Private Message to TexaslawmanDirect Link to This Post
Thanks. Feel better now. I do live in the Houston area and I do remember what a pain it was to drive my stick Camaro in traffic. My Fiero won't be a daily driver, just a toy to tinker with. I won't be racing it or anything so I'm sure the auto will be fine. Maybe I'll change the tranny if I ever get around to doing the V8 swap.
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Report this Post05-20-2010 05:29 PM Click Here to See the Profile for HockadaySend a Private Message to HockadayDirect Link to This Post
sell it, autos are horribly boring...i have a 500 plus hp auto car and i dread it every day
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mmeyer86gt/gtp
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Report this Post05-20-2010 06:11 PM Click Here to See the Profile for mmeyer86gt/gtpClick Here to Email mmeyer86gt/gtpSend a Private Message to mmeyer86gt/gtpDirect Link to This Post
Good idea with the auto is to swap in a 4t60 4-speed auto transmission.
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project34
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Report this Post05-20-2010 06:19 PM Click Here to See the Profile for project34Send a Private Message to project34Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Texaslawman:
I won't be racing it or anything so I'm sure the auto will be fine.

Be aware that contrary to what many people might think, if you did race it, an automatic at the drags likely would be better than a manual.

I'll note at the outset, I've nothing against either transmission in a Fiero.

However, if you really want to have fun with your automatic, bracket race the car at a drag strip. There, automatics rule, and they've done so for years. That isn't because they're quicker with a small engine like a 2.8L (they're typically not), but they produce more consistent drag strip times.

I've found that many people who fancy themselves to be "Mr. 4-Speed" or "Mr. 5-Speed" for some reason often "freeze" and do a truly stellar job of mis-shifting a manual at the drag strip. They might be quite proficient with a manual on the street, but in the heat of a bracket race at the drag strip, after those yellow lights on the "Christmas tree" at the starting line start coming down in intervals of only 1/2 of one second each, I've seen many opponents who earlier fancied themselves to be "Mr. 4-Speed" or "Mr. 5-Speed" for some reason screw up a shift later, while going down the track.

As you might imagine, mis-shifted screw-ups like that don't win at the drags.

However, please don't just take my word for any of this. Instead, go to your nearest drag strip and count how many automatics versus manuals are out there within the class you could be running your Fiero.

I'm not at all familiar with any of the racetracks near you in Texas, but I'll nonetheless bet the numbers you find at your nearest drag strip re automatics versus manuals will argue my case for me quite nicely.

If, on the other hand, you won't ever care to drag race your car at the strip, and you just like the feel of shifting a manual, then by all means, go for it! Otherwise, I get the sense you may forever regret not having switched your automatic to a manual.

Again, as I stated at the outset of my post, I've nothing against either transmission in a Fiero. Accordingly, good luck to you in whatever transmission you eventually decide upon.

***

By the way, I see the above were your first two posts ever to Pennock's Fiero Forum.

Welcome to it!

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SNAPPY829
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Report this Post05-20-2010 09:49 PM Click Here to See the Profile for SNAPPY829Click Here to Email SNAPPY829Send a Private Message to SNAPPY829Direct Link to This Post
I have had 2 autos and a 5speed, I actually sought out an auto this time because they are so much less of a headache IMO, between clutches, slaves, masters, and lines they can be high maintenance..... a blast to drive mind you, but can be a pain to keep working crisply. Enjoy your auto and your ride, its a Fiero remember!!!!
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Hockaday
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Report this Post05-21-2010 12:31 AM Click Here to See the Profile for HockadaySend a Private Message to HockadayDirect Link to This Post
im sure auto has a much more consistent drag time due to the almoost removal of the human factor. but if you're looking to get a nice DD with some good hp manual is the only way imho, with auto you just step on the gas basicly, no double clutching etc. most high end cars auto is not an option...but it comes down to this..its your car...what will you enjoy driving? me ican't stand auto and can't wait to swap trannys in my 79 t/a others love auto. its your car you decide =)
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pontiackid86
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Report this Post05-21-2010 01:06 AM Click Here to See the Profile for pontiackid86Click Here to Email pontiackid86Send a Private Message to pontiackid86Direct Link to This Post
If your going to boost it you have to take into account. You dont lose boost with an auto.
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revin
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Report this Post05-21-2010 09:08 AM Click Here to See the Profile for revinSend a Private Message to revinDirect Link to This Post
with a cup o coffee....better be auto!

but the front end lifting up when you "hit it" is a nice thing too
come to Austin and I'll show ya
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86fierofun
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Report this Post05-21-2010 09:27 AM Click Here to See the Profile for 86fierofunSend a Private Message to 86fierofunDirect Link to This Post
I've had both, and they both worked fine. The auto didn't get as good of gas mileage, but it wasn't terrible.

The manual does seem to be a lot more work to keep mechanically sound. I'm not sure I ever had to do anything to my auto trans.
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Tinton
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Report this Post05-21-2010 06:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TintonSend a Private Message to TintonDirect Link to This Post
Autos are boring and get poor gas mileage. The old slush '88 GT I had would get 16-18 mpg city and it'd be lucky to hit 24 mpg highway. That was stock and with a tune-up. The 5-speed '88 GT I have now gets 24 mpg city and that's with me driving kind of fast, and with all the mods it has. I haven't driven it on any trips lately but I think it'd get 30+ mpg highway very easily, if not 35 mpg. My 4-speed Fiero consistently gets 24 mpg city too, and I've hit 44 mpg highway with it (yes that's with a V6). That was hypermiling though, going only 55-60 mph, at 70+ mph it gets about 35 mpg highway. With how high gas prices are these days, I'd get a manual just for the better gas mileage.

Besides that though, automatics are boring to drive. When I drive a slush, my mind tends to wander, and I don't focus on the road so much. When I'm driving stick I'm always focused on driving and I anticipate traffic better, mostly because I downshift (rev-matching, heel-toeing, and double-clutching when needed) to brake and to keep it in the powerband. Also, a few years ago I owned a Camaro Z28 (w/ a LS1) and even though it had 340 hp, it got to be boring to drive just because of the slush. I'd almost say driving a manual economy car is more fun than that, lol.

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hyperv6
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Report this Post05-21-2010 06:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Direct Link to This Post
With the auto you will never have

A bad slave cylinder.

Bad clutch

Bad shifter cable.

or other issues that are common on a manual as they age and get higher miles.

Lock up selinoids are about the only common issue on the 3 speed. They are not hard to change on a Fiero. .
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Tinton
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Report this Post05-21-2010 06:30 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TintonSend a Private Message to TintonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by hyperv6:

With the auto you will never have

A bad slave cylinder.

Bad clutch

Bad shifter cable.

or other issues that are common on a manual as they age and get higher miles.

Lock up selinoids are about the only common issue on the 3 speed. They are not hard to change on a Fiero. .


Its a given that you have to change the clutch, shifter cables, and/or master and slave cylinders if they're old parts on a 20+ year old car. Once you have it all figured out (have to get the right parts! many are low quality and break after only a year) and all that stuff replaced, driving a manual Fiero is no different from driving a newer stickshift car. And fixing the TCC solenoid isn't THAT easy, its like changing a waterpump, IMO replacing/bleeding a slave cylinder is much easier.

I parked my '86 Fiero SE for 6 months and could still get clutch. How many other Fiero owners can say that about their car? Most get air in the lines just from sitting. I just had to pump the pedal a couple dozen times and its as good as it was after the last time I bled it. My '88GT went through like 5 slave cylinders in 4 years, but after getting a Rodney Dickman double-seal slave cylinder on the car its just like my 86, never loses clutch.

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[This message has been edited by Tinton (edited 05-21-2010).]

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