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The Rat Returneth by jaymelk2
Started on: 06-12-2012 09:42 AM
Replies: 94 (6624 views)
Last post by: fierosound on 12-24-2015 11:54 AM
jaymelk2
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Report this Post06-12-2012 09:42 AM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Well today is the day my fellow fiero fanatics...As of about 5 this afternoon I'm going to pick up the dirty rat for a short trip to my house. I found out a couple days ago that my wonderful wife decided that I needed a new project to work on so for an early Fathers' Day the rat is it!
I may be busy "thanking" her properly so I don't know how much posting I'll do the next week or so but I'll start a thread on the restoration of the old girl soon. For those on the forum who know me I'm v8 all the way so she'll be getting a fresh 383 slid back in her...an old LT-1 motor thats been warmed over a little, close to 400 ponies.
A little later this evening I also have a little I want to say about Chester so stay tuned.

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Report this Post06-12-2012 10:01 AM Click Here to See the Profile for donnie072003Click Here to visit donnie072003's HomePageClick Here to Email donnie072003Send a Private Message to donnie072003Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Now this is going to be a cool thread! Can't wait to see the resurection.
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Report this Post06-12-2012 10:10 AM Click Here to See the Profile for hnthompsClick Here to Email hnthompsSend a Private Message to hnthompsEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by jaymelk2:

Well today is the day my fellow fiero fanatics...As of about 5 this afternoon I'm going to pick up the dirty rat for a short trip to my house. I found out a couple days ago that my wonderful wife decided that I needed a new project to work on so for an early Fathers' Day the rat is it!
I may be busy "thanking" her properly so I don't know how much posting I'll do the next week or so but I'll start a thread on the restoration of the old girl soon. For those on the forum who know me I'm v8 all the way so she'll be getting a fresh 383 slid back in her...an old LT-1 motor thats been warmed over a little, close to 400 ponies.
A little later this evening I also have a little I want to say about Chester so stay tuned.



That is nice to hear. I now have the original Rat engine running in an 88 Mera so all of the original car parts are still functional.

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exoticse
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Report this Post06-12-2012 11:00 AM Click Here to See the Profile for exoticseClick Here to Email exoticseSend a Private Message to exoticseEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

That is awesome !

Glad to see this project will live on.

I thought about snagging it, but decided i need to finish one before i start another.

Good luck and keep the updates coming.
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jaymelk2
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Report this Post06-13-2012 12:01 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Got her hom last night. Looking at her lines it is just one gorgeous automobile. Many many thanks to Rob and Renee for being patient with me and allowing me to take this piece of history off of their hands. I know Rob doesn't believe it but I truly feel sorry for the pain he must feel from putting so many years and so much time into something and not seeing it finished. A toast to you both for the imagination to work on a project like the Rat as I've always thought it was one of the best looking cars on PFF.
I'm hoping to get the car drivable by end of summer, the mechanics shouldn't be too hard as I've got a v8 also to drop in her. The frame seems to be pretty solid...I guess that was the only thing done right by BB. I'm going to pull all the suspension apart and clean/ paint whole underside of the car. Once it's running again I'm going to start on the fiberglass work. As all of you know the targa is still not finished and from what I can see it is a mess. I have quite a few hours there and then I want to tweak some of the other parts on the body. Possibly cover the lip on the 355 front and smooth the upper side, blend in the archie rockers, several ideas up in the air.
For the most part I hope to continue Chester and Elviras' vision of the car. The only thing they had that I honestly think I despised was the wing on the rear. I guess Rob must have read my mind on that as it is already gone. Wish me luck as I begin this journey! By the way...at some point I will be selling the frame of my old car to whomever may be interested. It's an 86 gt with a good body and fiero store quarter sccops. The frame has absolutely no rust and the engine bay has been smoothed and painted. Underside is coated with bedliner.
May the Rat live on forever.

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Report this Post06-13-2012 12:29 PM Click Here to See the Profile for DanyelClick Here to visit Danyel's HomePageSend a Private Message to DanyelEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by jaymelk2:
By the way...at some point I will be selling the frame of my old car to whomever may be interested. It's an 86 gt with a good body and fiero store quarter sccops. The frame has absolutely no rust and the engine bay has been smoothed and painted. Underside is coated with bedliner.


Man why do these ALWAYS have to be so far away

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My Build Thread
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exoticse
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Report this Post06-13-2012 12:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for exoticseClick Here to Email exoticseSend a Private Message to exoticseEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
.
If you are going to keep the 355 nose, i would SERIOUSLY consider swapping it out for the Amida nose,.......MUCH better looking.

There is really no comparison.

If i had purchased the car that was the first thing i was going to do was get rid of that nose for the new Madcurl one or one from Amida.

[This message has been edited by exoticse (edited 06-13-2012).]

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Report this Post06-13-2012 01:17 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BlackThunderGTSend a Private Message to BlackThunderGTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by exoticse:


That is awesome !

Glad to see this project will live on.

I thought about snagging it, but decided i need to finish one before i start another.

Good luck and keep the updates coming.


I also thought about snagging it however my current build must be completed first.

Can’t wait to see the resurrection of this one!
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Report this Post06-13-2012 01:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for E.FurgalSend a Private Message to E.FurgalEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
um,, for the newb's pic's?
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Report this Post06-13-2012 02:19 PM Click Here to See the Profile for troyboyClick Here to Email troyboySend a Private Message to troyboyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
added to favorites
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Report this Post06-13-2012 02:38 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BlackThunderGTSend a Private Message to BlackThunderGTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by E.Furgal:

um,, for the newb's pic's?


Check it out here!
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/A...110502-1-040339.html
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Report this Post06-14-2012 12:38 AM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Exotisce, I'm with you on Amidas' nose... it is definitely alot nicer piece than the style I have now... I'm thinking of trying something though. Possibly filling the front area down to the lip on the bumper and smoothing it all down? Also maybe running it into the fenders? If you look at some of the old side views its almost like the bumper points at the ground...if I could take that out it would look alot better.
What exactly is the easiest way to upload pics to the forum? I haven't tried to do any yet and I guess it's time to learn.
To Furgal...The Rat is one of the most famous cars on the forum...there are several threads about it here. It was and is the only example of a choptop with a targa cut into it. I hope to do the car some justice as it has had its' share of bad times over the years.

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datacop
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Report this Post06-14-2012 02:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for datacopClick Here to visit datacop's HomePageClick Here to Email datacopSend a Private Message to datacopEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Umm.. Not to burst your bubble.. but be careful when you lift the car.. the X frame under the care that B&B did does not attach to the struts..

ie, it's not a solid wheel to wheel supporting structure and the car will buckle a bit... Esp. since the center section is removable for access to the gas tank.

The only "nice" thing about that whole B&B fiasco is the fact that the X frame was made so that it replaced the cooling tubes running under the car.

If it were me that purchased the Rat.. I would look into extending the X frame into the rear strut towers and the front cross member.
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Report this Post06-14-2012 11:51 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Thanks for the heads up Data but the frame does in fact tie into the towers...at least at the rear...don't know about the front yet. It seems to be relatively solid. I'm thinking about adding a couple more braces at the door corners but this is more for piece of mind than anything else.
My biggest problem is finishing the targa...none of the fiberglass is straight around that area, not really sure who BB had on it, I think my 9 year old could have done better. It's just time...not that bigga deal. The mechanics should go pretty smooth...all I have to do is run my wiring back in for the bay and cut a notch for the tranny on the drivers side...after smoothing and paint of course.

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Report this Post06-15-2012 10:14 AM Click Here to See the Profile for motoracer838Click Here to Email motoracer838Send a Private Message to motoracer838Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Congrats', it's good to see that the "Rat" is going to get back on the road.

Joe
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Report this Post06-15-2012 10:41 AM Click Here to See the Profile for datacopClick Here to visit datacop's HomePageClick Here to Email datacopSend a Private Message to datacopEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by jaymelk2:
Thanks for the heads up Data but the frame does in fact tie into the towers...at least at the rear...

[... snip ...]

My biggest problem is finishing the targa...none of the fiberglass is straight around that area

[... snip ...]


Excellent! Chester must have added that later after he got it back from B&B.. I'm fairly positive that it didn't come that way from Bill... Though it's been a few years, so my memory *could* be faulty

Yea.. The targa hole is something else.. Not only is nothing straight.. but when Chester got it back from B&B.. there was absolutely *NO* reinforcement for the latches in the front or the tabs in the back.. Bill had the metal tabs for the targa roof back going into fiberglass slits. He was also supposed to supply Chester with locking miata latches for the front to keep everything secure. Last I saw the car (a couple of years ago anyway) that wasn't done either.

It's really kinda sad.. Chester and Elvira loved the Rat and working with Chester every day, it's was obvious his heart and passion was into it.. Then to have his passion utterly destroyed by the actions of one man and his false promises and shoddy work.... it broke my heart.

I truly hope that you are able to give the Rat the love and attention that it so desperately deserves. That car *NEEDS* to be on the road again

I'll be watching!

If you need any help.. I'm only 2 hours north of ya. Give me a hollar

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jaymelk2
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Report this Post06-15-2012 12:30 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Thanks for the offer data...the tubing does appear to have been added in after the fact as its round tubing and unpainted compared to the square style underneath. You're right about the targa, all there is in the glass are holes for the pins and tabs to go into. Real professional job don't you think?
I hate to knock anyones work as I run a construction business myself but the glass is horrid on the car. The windshield cap isn't straight with the glass nor is the rear edge of it straight enough to work off of, the header was just cut without adding in any metal to stiffen it back up. As you said...the rear just has slots in it...the top itself isn't straight along its' edges. It's like a kid was doing the work.
The car itself is nice though...there seems to be a little rust in the upper frame rail area, I'm going to pull the hatch soon to check it out and coat everything to stop any problems. Honestly it looks like it started from the weld never being covered. In the lower rail I have to cut a notch in to fit my setup as mine is a Zumalt style kit.
I want to finish and drive this piece of history as Chester always intended. It's such a shame what happened to him and the amount of money he spent on the car for nothing. I know I watch everything I spend on mine and do just about everything to it. I built it for just over 2300 complete and am proud of that fact as everyone says v8s are expensive swaps.
I hope to have her at least drivable soon and then maybe spend the winter doing fiberglass mods and maybe a dash swap as I have a mitsu eclipse 3g dash sitting on the shelf waiting. Wish me luck!

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Report this Post06-15-2012 10:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Marine1981Click Here to visit Marine1981's HomePageSend a Private Message to Marine1981Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Good luck, he was practically giving the car away for the price he was asking. I wish I would have had more money and a place to work on it, I might have bought it.
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Report this Post06-15-2012 11:13 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Giving it away was right Marine...all I'll say is that I got her for alot less than what Rob was asking...and I thought THAT price was a steal.

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Report this Post06-16-2012 09:42 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Looking forward to the rebirth so to speak.

I have always been a fan of the Rat and hope that you can bring it down to Daytona one day.
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jaymelk2
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Report this Post06-17-2012 01:13 AM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Thanks Jake....I'm hoping to make it next year

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Report this Post06-17-2012 09:42 AM Click Here to See the Profile for fierosoundClick Here to visit fierosound's HomePageClick Here to Email fierosoundSend a Private Message to fierosoundEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Good luck with your project. Make it to "your own vision" not someone else's.

[This message has been edited by fierosound (edited 07-22-2012).]

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Report this Post06-18-2012 05:49 AM Click Here to See the Profile for AustralianClick Here to visit Australian's HomePageClick Here to Email AustralianSend a Private Message to AustralianEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
How about some new pics as the archive links are broken. WB
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jaymelk2
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Report this Post06-19-2012 11:53 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Working on the pics Aus...I took a few when I brought her home but haven't learned how to post on here yet. I've got some good idas on where to go I just need to get started!

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Report this Post06-22-2012 11:02 AM Click Here to See the Profile for fierosoundClick Here to visit fierosound's HomePageClick Here to Email fierosoundSend a Private Message to fierosoundEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I'd think the first thing to do is make sure the frame is straight because you can't assume it's "right" after B&B did their butchery on it.
You should probably get it on a body shop's frame alignment machine to check these dimensions (from Body Section of the Service Manuals).

Then I'd fix the roof before installing interior, powertrain etc.

[This message has been edited by fierosound (edited 09-15-2014).]

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Report this Post06-23-2012 12:08 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierosoundClick Here to visit fierosound's HomePageClick Here to Email fierosoundSend a Private Message to fierosoundEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by hnthomps:

I now have the original Rat engine running in an 88 Mera so all of the original car parts are still functional.



No swap thread? The last I read about was your 3800 S/C swap.

[This message has been edited by fierosound (edited 06-23-2012).]

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jaymelk2
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Report this Post06-24-2012 03:35 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
In your neck of the country for the next few days Exotisce...vacationing at Amelia Island til the weekend. Gonna start on the construction as soon as I return. I can't wait to get started.

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jaymelk2
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Report this Post07-12-2012 11:05 AM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Well folks...back to the Rat today. I've done some preliminary detective work on the frame reinforcement and I see I have a problem. Even though the side rails are tied into the rear frame it was done 12" above the rail and is not really doing any good. I'm thinking of trying what Archie did on the roadster only from the outside of the frame...what do you think?
I think maybe welding a boomerang piece of steel to the side rail of the x frame and up the pinch weld...plus another piece at the bottom corner behind the door would give enough stiffness to keep the frame from flexing no? I'm trying to decide on thickness 1/8 or 3/16? With the car pushing down I only have about an 1/8 movement but jacking the car at the door corner results in 3/4 and this is without the engine!
Also I've been looking at the x frame in between the side rails...does anyone know if this even provides any improvement over just the side rails? It doesn't really seem to be doing anything but lowering my ground clearance. I'm hoping to be able to get the car down close to 40" overall and this won't happen with the x in place.
Unlike others on here I appreciate the comradery and brotherhood of this forum and I welcome any advice. This is my 5th fiero and scond v8 but my first chop and I've got a targa to deal with too! Fortunately I'm fairly handy with tools and won't quit until somethings finished.
Long live The Rat!!

PS....at some point when I figure out how I'll have updated pics on....sadly I'm not as good with computers as I am with cars

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Report this Post07-12-2012 11:23 AM Click Here to See the Profile for exoticseClick Here to Email exoticseSend a Private Message to exoticseEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

When i was thinking about getting this car, i was thinking doing exactly what archie did on the roadster also ! Great minds think alike.

If i were you i would get some advice from Archie himself since that is something he is very experienced at.

I am guessing he is not going to be too much of a fan of the work done on the car since it left his shop so be prepared for the harsh truth.
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dratts
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Report this Post07-12-2012 05:56 PM Click Here to See the Profile for drattsClick Here to Email drattsSend a Private Message to drattsEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The x-frame is what nearly every roadster kit car manufacturer did. I had my kit manufacturer install one and he had it built and installed by a NASCAR frame and suspension guy. The first time I jacked it behind the door it bent like a wet noodle. It was framed all the way from the back to the front suspension. They use 1X4 tubes laying on the side in order to minimize the loss of ground clearance. That's what they all did. Of course with the tubing laid on it's side it gives practically no reinforcement for the top removal. I think that it might give some support for frame TWISTING but that's about it. I think that Archie has done the strongest frame reinforcement for a topless car. Good luck, I want to see that car finished.
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Report this Post07-12-2012 06:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Gokart MozartClick Here to visit Gokart Mozart's HomePageSend a Private Message to Gokart MozartEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If you lay angle steel around the tunnel ,front to back, and box in the tunnel you can gain rigidity but lose a bit of space.
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Report this Post07-12-2012 06:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for madcurlClick Here to Email madcurlSend a Private Message to madcurlEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Gokart Mozart:

If you lay angle steel around the tunnel ,front to back, and box in the tunnel you can gain rigidity but lose a bit of space.


ding, ding, ding! We have a winner..
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Report this Post07-12-2012 07:30 PM Click Here to See the Profile for drattsClick Here to Email drattsSend a Private Message to drattsEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Archie reinforces the tunnel plus adds tubing in the rockers doesn't he? I feel certain that he has the strongest frame under a topless Fiero. Has he ever posted a number showing how much weight he adds?
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Report this Post07-12-2012 07:35 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierogt28Click Here to Email fierogt28Send a Private Message to fierogt28Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Danyel:


Man why do these ALWAYS have to be so far away



There are some close or around, but your gonna pay $$$ to get something nice.

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fierogt28

88 GT, Loaded, 5-speed.
88 GT, 5-speed. All original.

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Report this Post07-12-2012 07:41 PM Click Here to See the Profile for madcurlClick Here to Email madcurlSend a Private Message to madcurlEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by dratts:

Archie reinforces the tunnel plus adds tubing in the rockers doesn't he? I feel certain that he has the strongest frame under a topless Fiero. Has he ever posted a number showing how much weight he adds?











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jaymelk2
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Report this Post07-12-2012 09:52 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
My rockers are VERY solid...it is 2 x 2 square tube with a 3/16? wall I believe. The problem is behind the door. Madcurl yes that is what I'm thinking of doing but putting it on the outside of the frame instead of inside. I can tie the rockers to the pinch weld and on the lower b pillar I can run a piece there also. I just didn't know what thickness I should use. (leaning towards 3/16)
I don't think the tunnel work would give much strength front to rear...only twisting strength. Archie, what are your thoughts on this? I would also like to lose the x portion if possible but don't know the plausibility. Again...anyone who knows please chime in.
Thanks,Jay

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87 GT...SBC...Fast as hell

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exoticse
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Report this Post07-12-2012 10:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for exoticseClick Here to Email exoticseSend a Private Message to exoticseEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Jaymelk2 check your pm.

[This message has been edited by exoticse (edited 07-12-2012).]

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jaymelk2
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Report this Post07-16-2012 09:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Got back to you Exoticse....as for the rest of you guys....no opinions? help? constructive criticism?

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Pete Matos
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Report this Post07-16-2012 09:53 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Personally i think that those pictures of Archie's setup are pretty well thought out. I would think some plate across the transmission/fuel cell tunnel going to the rear bulkhead like that would go a long ways to strengthening the frame as does the pieces in behind the doors on the inside. I would think that some 3/16 tube going beyond the back of the rear window bulkhead along the rocker and then triangulated up to the sail panel area would be a good idea. The X braces underneath would also be helpful if done properly. I love the idea of a targa or speedster fiero and If I ever get my notchie project finished I can see me doing one of these. It is just a lot of work and welding but I kinda LIKE welding hehehe Good luck with it man...peace

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jaymelk2
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Report this Post07-16-2012 11:11 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jaymelk2Click Here to Email jaymelk2Send a Private Message to jaymelk2Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Hey Pete, Thanks for the input. I'm going to do something along Archies' lines it's just I'm thinking of doing it on the outside of the frame instead of inside. (I want to use my b pillars to run wiring) I plan on taking all wiring out of the firewall and engine bay aside from engine harness. This is how my present car is done....everything smooth and painted...very good look I think.
I'm thinking of doing the console tunnel to strengthen torsion forces but working on details. I don't think my x frame is doing much other than losing ground clearance which I want. As said above I'm trying to get close to 40 inches and I need that clearance to do it.
Chester had a fantastic idea to start but it was just never completed....I hope to change that. In a few more months I hope to have the only running...driving...choptop targa baby! I get excited every time I think about it. Stay tuned!
Jay

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87 GT...SBC...Fast as hell

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