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Re-creating the Fiero frame by lou_dias
Started on: 07-25-2012 10:48 AM
Replies: 170 (15248 views)
Last post by: FieroLost on 04-06-2016 11:13 PM
lou_dias
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Report this Post07-25-2012 10:48 AM Click Here to See the Profile for lou_diasClick Here to Email lou_diasSend a Private Message to lou_diasEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Has anyone attempted recreating the Fiero frame? Even in sections?
Looking ahead: recreating it in aluminum or some other stonger and lighter material?

I believe the Fiero frame only actually weighs just over 600 lbs. However with an aluminum version and key steel re-enforcements, it could probably go down to 375 lbs.

Taking 225 lbs off the weight of the car would certainly improve braking and acceleration not to mention fuel economy. I know the engine cradle is around 60 lbs, but lightening that another 20 lbs would be great as well.

A 2500 lbs fully loaded Fiero will feel better than a 2800 lbs car. Thoughts?

Another thing I've noticed is that I've looked under some FWD GM cars with 3400's in them and the cradle looks fairly similar to the Fiero's and looked like aluminum. Would it be easier to adapt those to the Fiero rear-end?
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lou_dias
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Report this Post07-25-2012 10:50 AM Click Here to See the Profile for lou_diasClick Here to Email lou_diasSend a Private Message to lou_diasEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

lou_dias

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This thread show some promise with regards to the cradle:
http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum2/HTML/095283.html
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Report this Post07-25-2012 02:03 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BloozberrySend a Private Message to BloozberryEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Nobody does it on a commercial basis that I'm aware of, though I've successfully formed a few portions of the upper and lower rear frame rails on a one-off basis from steel. These are simple shallow drawn parts though, so I doubt anyone without the multi-ton presses and dies would be able to fabricate the deep drawn parts like the door frames for example.

Rear upper frame rail section:







Rear lower frame rail section:





Front upper cross member mounts ('84-87)

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Report this Post07-25-2012 02:28 PM Click Here to See the Profile for psychosurferSend a Private Message to psychosurferEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
What does the tube-chassis Fiero weigh in at?
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Report this Post07-25-2012 03:11 PM Click Here to See the Profile for RWDPLZClick Here to visit RWDPLZ's HomePageSend a Private Message to RWDPLZEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I've also done some frame rail repair. The original frame seems to be largely made out of 20 gauge stamped sections spot welded together. I couldn't believe how thin the stuff was.

Upper rail (I'm sure this weighs more than the original, and is a bit stronger):



http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum9/HTML/000012.html

Uppers, lowers, strut tower, trunk corners:



http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum2/HTML/121544.html
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Report this Post07-25-2012 04:27 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Formula88Send a Private Message to Formula88Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by lou_dias:

Has anyone attempted recreating the Fiero frame? Even in sections?
Looking ahead: recreating it in aluminum or some other stonger and lighter material?


Recreating patch sections isn't too hard. Recreating the entire frame, especially in aluminum, etc., is exceedingly difficult.
Keep in mind you cannot just duplicate the existing frame in aluminum. Since aluminum is weaker, the dimensions of each piece will be different to support the required loads. (like aluminum connecting rods are substantially thicker than steel ones)

If you wanted to recreate the frame and make it lighter, you're best bet would probably be to design a tube frame from scratch and try to duplicate whatever existing mounting locations you want to use.
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Report this Post07-25-2012 05:48 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BloozberrySend a Private Message to BloozberryEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Formula88:
Keep in mind you cannot just duplicate the existing frame in aluminum.


Bear in mind that Alcan did exactly that for two cars... even used the stamping dies meant for sheet steel.

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hyperv6
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Report this Post07-25-2012 08:43 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Time to take a bite of the reality sandwich. I would rather think you will never see anything more than a patch if even that. There just is no maket for a full frame as it would cost you more than many complete clean cars. I am sorry but the odds are against it in steel but the cost of aluminum would be gastly.

People make parts to make money and there just not any profit in a Fiero frame.

And +2 on the Alcan frames as they even raced the one in a race at lime rock. The if the shape is right on the Aluminum it could prove to be very strong and the stock stampings on the Fiero were only sheetmetal so they were pretty much a strong shape anyways. It was under consideration for the future but cost and repair were major issues as later found with the NSX. Even today Aluminum is difficult to do on a low price car but it is becomeing more common. My GTP has a aluminum sub frame.

[This message has been edited by hyperv6 (edited 07-25-2012).]

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Stubby79
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Report this Post07-25-2012 11:31 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Stubby79Send a Private Message to Stubby79Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
hmm...you could cut your frame down to the tub (passenger compartment) and replace the front and rear with tube frames...though you might wanna think twice about getting in a crash with it! Go make some lightweight doors out of aluminum or carbon fibre or something and ust leave the steel impact beam.
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lou_dias
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Report this Post07-26-2012 12:23 AM Click Here to See the Profile for lou_diasClick Here to Email lou_diasSend a Private Message to lou_diasEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I believe, generally speaking, per volume, aluminum weighs 1/2 of steel. When I mentioned going from 600 lbs to 400 lbs, I was taking into account thicker tubing with the same outside diameter. Otherwise, I would have shot closer to 300lbs.

I believe the Fiero frame is basically 3 sections welded together. The front, the passenger compartment and the rear. It would be interesting if someone had a completely bare frame that could separate the sections, then tackle the problem of reverse engineering it.

There is also the carbon-fiber option but, I'm not up to date if those costs have gone down yet...

I would happily pay to save 20lbs from an aluminum engine cradle. I'd love to replace the door impact beams with aluminum versions as they are extremely over-engineered. My brother took a hit diagonally from a 1997 Suburban in the middle of the driver's side door and the suburban bounced off. A friend of mine had a guy in a Harley speeding run a red light and hit him in the door...the bike bounced up and damaged the roof (and the door) but both times not a scratch on my brother or friend and that is beyond what can happen in the 1 lap oval track racing that I do. Fiero doors are the heaviest doors I have ever seen...too heavy if you ask me...
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Report this Post07-26-2012 12:32 AM Click Here to See the Profile for lou_diasClick Here to Email lou_diasSend a Private Message to lou_diasEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I think there would be a market for an aluminum cradle that was compatible with 88-like suspension components.
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Report this Post07-26-2012 04:52 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Stubby79Send a Private Message to Stubby79Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Aluminum weighs ~40% the weight of steel, but as you say, you need more of it to make up the strength.
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hyperv6
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Report this Post07-26-2012 06:49 AM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If anyone wants an aluminum cradle you would have to adapt one from a late W body GM.
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Report this Post07-26-2012 06:53 AM Click Here to See the Profile for BloozberrySend a Private Message to BloozberryEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
According to Witzenburg's book, "The aluminum space frames [made by Alcan] weighed 68% less than their steel counterparts. They also boosted torsional stiffness by 42% and bending stiffness by 54%."

Personally, I believe the book mis-stated the weight number and it should have read that the aluminum car weighed 68% of the steel car, not 68% less. But if you believe the book, then the aluminum space frame weighed in at 200 lbs vs 600 lbs made of steel.
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lou_dias
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Report this Post07-26-2012 12:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for lou_diasClick Here to Email lou_diasSend a Private Message to lou_diasEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
To say "it's not worth it" is not exactly correct.
You just got to figure out your return on investment when you factor in:

less wear on brakes
less fuel costs
fun

It wold pay for itself eventually, you could probably save $300/yr on fuel...

I know Archie and others have stripped Fieros down to the frame and restoring and painting it as the basis for kits...
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Report this Post07-26-2012 12:53 PM Click Here to See the Profile for qwikgtaClick Here to Email qwikgtaSend a Private Message to qwikgtaEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Lou,
I was thinking about how cool it would be to remove the front and rear suspension all together, then fit a tube Chassis under the car useing C5/C6 front/rear suspension parts/brakes. Cut out the portion under the passenger compartment and then reform the sheetmetal that will form the floorboards/gas tank area. It may not be lighter, but maybe the suspension/brake and steering upgrades would make for a fun car. Plus you could make the whole car longer and run a longitudinal engine/trans setup .

Just thinking.

Rob
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Report this Post07-26-2012 12:55 PM Click Here to See the Profile for qwikgtaClick Here to Email qwikgtaSend a Private Message to qwikgtaEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

qwikgta

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quote
Originally posted by hyperv6:

If anyone wants an aluminum cradle you would have to adapt one from a late W body GM.


Member of the local club has a Northstar in his 86 GT that is running the stock Caddiliac cradle fitted to the Fiero. Northstar/Trans and cradle/suspension/brakes are all off the donor car. Somehow it all works.

Rob
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Report this Post07-26-2012 12:58 PM Click Here to See the Profile for qwikgtaClick Here to Email qwikgtaSend a Private Message to qwikgtaEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

qwikgta

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quote
Originally posted by lou_dias:

I think there would be a market for an aluminum cradle that was compatible with 88-like suspension components.


I'd buy one, or I'd buy tube cradle all set up to run the 88 parts. I would think that a jig could be made up and then the tube cradle's could be made to order. Initial setup is the only *itch. After you get one done, each one after that would be easy. May only sell a few dozen or so, but if you could do it for $500 or so, i bet they would sell.

Rob
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Report this Post07-26-2012 01:16 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fieroguruSend a Private Message to fieroguruEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The camaro and other vintage hot rod chassis are now being aftermarket reproduced and cost in the 10K to 15K for one. Doing the same with the Fiero chassis will end up costing more, as the people willing to spend 15K+ for a prefect new chassis are very, very few... but the people who want a fully restored 69 Camaro will end up spending almost that much just to fix an older original chassis, so the economics are easier to justify from a cost aviodance standpoint. Saving $300 in fuel/maintenance will not put a dent in justifying a $15K outlay.

The problem is lots of people say they want a tubular cradle, but most are thinking they can get one for $200 to $600 and that just isn't going to happen (unless you built it yourself or work out a trade with a buddy). A tubular cradle from a vendor will be in the $1000+ range and best case you might save 10 lbs... (stock 88 cradle is only 50 lbs to start with). Most would have to be focused on comepetive racing to justify a $100/lb weight reduction.

If you are wanting to drop weight for fuel efficiency and less wear/tear on brakes... you are far better off focusing on reducing spinning weight. Crankshaft, pistons, rods, balancer, flywheel, clutch, axles, brake rotors, wheels, tires, anything that spins with vehicle speed... small reductions in weight in this area will have large increases in city fuel mileage and hp to the wheels.
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Report this Post07-26-2012 04:55 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by lou_dias:

To say "it's not worth it" is not exactly correct.
You just got to figure out your return on investment when you factor in:

less wear on brakes
less fuel costs
fun

It wold pay for itself eventually, you could probably save $300/yr on fuel...

I know Archie and others have stripped Fieros down to the frame and restoring and painting it as the basis for kits...


To do a space frame complete right would be at least $10K or more.

To do a cradle would be at least $3K or more and the volume of both would not be worth the investment of anyone.

This a case where what you would save would never recoupe the amount you spent and would be more than the value of the car.

I work in the automotive aftermarket and see what the cost are on these deal to mass produce. As pointed out the new 69 Camaro shells are now $15K but a fully built car may be worth $30K-$50K depending on what was done to it.

Now if someone did one at home and for themselve and not for resale that is a different story.

If you want to save weight the C5 Idea fabed with coil overs and a bolt in deal to the front or rear would be the best bet. It too would not be cheap but at least is would be more economical.

The greatest issue is in the Fiero market there is little call for expensive parts as too few owners can afford them or if they can they will not spend more on the parts than the car is worth. We are not restoring numbers matching ZL-1's here.

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Report this Post07-26-2012 05:00 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

hyperv6

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quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:

The camaro and other vintage hot rod chassis are now being aftermarket reproduced and cost in the 10K to 15K for one. Doing the same with the Fiero chassis will end up costing more, as the people willing to spend 15K+ for a prefect new chassis are very, very few... but the people who want a fully restored 69 Camaro will end up spending almost that much just to fix an older original chassis, so the economics are easier to justify from a cost aviodance standpoint. Saving $300 in fuel/maintenance will not put a dent in justifying a $15K outlay.

The problem is lots of people say they want a tubular cradle, but most are thinking they can get one for $200 to $600 and that just isn't going to happen (unless you built it yourself or work out a trade with a buddy). A tubular cradle from a vendor will be in the $1000+ range and best case you might save 10 lbs... (stock 88 cradle is only 50 lbs to start with). Most would have to be focused on comepetive racing to justify a $100/lb weight reduction.


If you are wanting to drop weight for fuel efficiency and less wear/tear on brakes... you are far better off focusing on reducing spinning weight. Crankshaft, pistons, rods, balancer, flywheel, clutch, axles, brake rotors, wheels, tires, anything that spins with vehicle speed... small reductions in weight in this area will have large increases in city fuel mileage and hp to the wheels.


Good realistic advice here guys take note.

[This message has been edited by hyperv6 (edited 07-26-2012).]

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Report this Post07-26-2012 06:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for E.FurgalSend a Private Message to E.FurgalEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fieroguru:

The camaro and other vintage hot rod chassis are now being aftermarket reproduced and cost in the 10K to 15K for one. Doing the same with the Fiero chassis will end up costing more, as the people willing to spend 15K+ for a prefect new chassis are very, very few... but the people who want a fully restored 69 Camaro will end up spending almost that much just to fix an older original chassis, so the economics are easier to justify from a cost aviodance standpoint. Saving $300 in fuel/maintenance will not put a dent in justifying a $15K outlay.

The problem is lots of people say they want a tubular cradle, but most are thinking they can get one for $200 to $600 and that just isn't going to happen (unless you built it yourself or work out a trade with a buddy). A tubular cradle from a vendor will be in the $1000+ range and best case you might save 10 lbs... (stock 88 cradle is only 50 lbs to start with). Most would have to be focused on comepetive racing to justify a $100/lb weight reduction.

If you are wanting to drop weight for fuel efficiency and less wear/tear on brakes... you are far better off focusing on reducing spinning weight. Crankshaft, pistons, rods, balancer, flywheel, clutch, axles, brake rotors, wheels, tires, anything that spins with vehicle speed... small reductions in weight in this area will have large increases in city fuel mileage and hp to the wheels.



think you need to back up..
the items you are thinking of.. are compete car bodies.. the camaro/mustang is the whole thing.. the chevelle is the body no frame..
you can get new aftermarket frames for 2-8k depending on what you want..
I'd bet someone could make the fiero frame in carbon for under that 15k your listing..
you can get a complete FFR car , kit for 14-19k frame body, interior, the works - engine/trans/rear..
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Report this Post07-26-2012 07:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fieroguruSend a Private Message to fieroguruEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by E.Furgal:
think you need to back up..
the items you are thinking of.. are compete car bodies.. the camaro/mustang is the whole thing.. the chevelle is the body no frame..
you can get new aftermarket frames for 2-8k depending on what you want..
I'd bet someone could make the fiero frame in carbon for under that 15k your listing..
you can get a complete FFR car , kit for 14-19k frame body, interior, the works - engine/trans/rear..


I will stay right where I am...

The fiero chassis is a very complicated space frame with a large # of individual metal stampings and is probably more difficult to recreate than a standard unibody car chassis from the 60's. Plus, when they decided to make the whole camaro chassis, they already had 90+% of the stamping dies completed and generating revenue from selling individual components for the last 20+ years. None of this has happened to the fiero chassis. There are no aftermarket panel sections... so if you want to recreate it, you have to build 100% of the tooling upfront before you recoup a dime. If you want to recreate a copy of the fiero chassis in steel or aluminum, it will take millions in upfront costs and probably never reach triple digits in full chassis sold. Say you could make all the tooling and manufacturing processes setup for $1,000,000. If you could line up 100 buyers, you would need 10K per chassis just to break even... I will stick with my 15K+ estimate (even though I have doubts 15K is even high enough to actually accomplish it, cause I doubt the actual # of potential buyers is over 10).

In many regards, a complete tube chassis that you control the design on can be easier and lower cost. You do not need the high $$$ stamping dies that formed sheet metal needs, you just need a bender, notcher and welder. If you plan to make 100+ tube chassis, then you will probably invest in a nice CNC bender and notcher to greatly improve bend/cut precision so the parts can be quickly fitted in the chassis fixture and speed up the actual assembly process.
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Report this Post07-26-2012 10:09 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cam-a-lotSend a Private Message to cam-a-lotEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
As someone with a lot of tool and die and mold making experience, I can tell you that it is a complete pipe dream to think that someone without hundreds of thousands of dollars to invest could safely re-create a spaceframe, never mind use a different material. By and large, the Fiero crowd doesn't exactly have the deep pockets of the owners of classic exotics who "may" be willing to pay for an aluminum frame. The FEA analysis., hundreds of welds, stress and impact testing, etc that would be required would be a complete waste of time and money, not to mention a guaranteed money loser.

It would be far simpler to recreate an injection mold to make Lexan quarter windows, and no one has done that either due to the reasons mentioned above. Not enough market, and the market that does exist tends to be cheap and/or poor..

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Report this Post07-26-2012 11:04 PM Click Here to See the Profile for silver 85 scClick Here to Email silver 85 scSend a Private Message to silver 85 scEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
With time and money I could do it. I have stripped several cars, and studied the parts. The company I work for has the equipment. It could be done 2 ways. The first way is the forming just like GM did. The dies are going to be the issue. I could make them, but I would have to sell lots of parts to make it worth while. The other option is the origami way. A blank is cut either on the laser or the punch press, and where the bends are supposed to be there are small stitch cuts that could be formed either by hand or with standard on the shelf dies. Then the stitches are welded shut to create a finished part. I have been trying to talk my wife into letting me have a frame in the back yard so that I could begin the process. However, as of right now the answer is no.


As for aluminum, while I was in the pumper truck industry we converted from steel to aluminum. There is roughly a 66% weight savings. We used marine alloy. Which is almost as strong as steel, and of course extremely corrosion resistant. I can't remember the number I think it was 5083. This is incredible stuff. Imagine an 80,000 gvw trailer made out of 1/4" aluminum plate. We built them. That is an incredible amount of stress on such a thin plate. This alloy is also used in the construction of railroad coal cars.


The biggest obstacle would be the joining of steel to aluminum. In the beginning of our switch to aluminum we discovered electrolysis problems. We had to isolate the steel from the aluminum. Stainless steel seemed to work, but for added isolation we added rubber sheeting, rhino lining in some cases. Then everything was bolted together. The biggest thing with the aluminum is the bending. The bend radius on this material was 2x material thickness. Anything tighter and there was a potential for cracking. So forming could be a little tricky, especially if the temper was anything higher than O temper.

Rich

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Report this Post03-08-2013 02:15 PM Click Here to See the Profile for retromanClick Here to Email retromanSend a Private Message to retromanEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I know this is old, but the topic is just too good to let it die. I've thought about this many times. I think there could be money to be made here. Think about it. Due to the Fiero's construction and engine layout, it has much wider applications than just the Fiero community. While I know alot of people might buy a new frame to restore a Fiero for what it is, alot more would buy it because the Fiero is the world's number one chassis donor when it comes to kit cars, and face it, with the newest of our cars being 25 years old, the pool of donors is slowly drying up. We could someday be forced to restore cars that would've been previously used for parts and crushed. New tech may also be able to improve our cars' original design. I for one like the idea of an aluminum spaceframe. If someone were to pursue this, I think costs could be brought down to a reasonable level. I'm no engineer, nor do I know anyone who is, but my plan of action for something like this would be as follows:

1. Get licensing approval from GM. No one likes lawsuits, and besides being able to label a product as "Officially Licensed by GM" is always a plus and would allow a small business owner to ride GM's coat tail.

2. Try to obtain as many original blueprints and manufacturing details as possible. Hopefully, GM would be willing to cooperate and give a boost on this one.

3. Have a near perfect Fiero spaceframe put through a 3D scanner. Reverse engineering has really taken off due to this technology and it ensures accuracy, so cutting time and maintaining the cars proportions to the last microscopic detail is another plus. People like OEM looking parts. You don't want something that looks like it was hacked together in a garage. This part could be expensive, but good news is it only has to be done once.

4. Consult a tooling company. I don't expect the volume of production that GM had, but regardless of volume tooling is always a must in manufacturing.

Well, that's my .02
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Report this Post03-08-2013 02:31 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Gall757Send a Private Message to Gall757Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
HoooBoy!

You live far enough away from Detroit to think this is a possibility. I like your optimism a lot, but seriously...You can spend a career trying to find the right office at General Motors, and then they could only spend time on it if they were going to make money. Add to that the fact that they don't even have Pontiac any more, that name is the property of the bankrupt part of GM that the government is keeping alive to throw all the debts into.

Add on top of that: Have you seen pictures of the the Gilman Machine?

http://www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum2/HTML/116809.html
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AusFiero
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Report this Post03-08-2013 04:02 PM Click Here to See the Profile for AusFieroClick Here to visit AusFiero's HomePageClick Here to Email AusFieroSend a Private Message to AusFieroEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If anyone had the funds to make an aluminum one the chances are they would probably just buy a Lotus Elise. Or a Hennessy
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retroman
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Report this Post03-08-2013 04:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for retromanClick Here to Email retromanSend a Private Message to retromanEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I never said it would be easy, but similar things have been done before. Factory Five Racing was a startup company that became famous for making Cobra replicas without Shelby's help or approval. Is the Fiero as popular as the Cobra? No, but Factory Five proved that you don't need to spend 10s of millions of dollars in equipment to remake an entire car.
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qwikgta
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Report this Post03-08-2013 04:27 PM Click Here to See the Profile for qwikgtaClick Here to Email qwikgtaSend a Private Message to qwikgtaEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
A few months ago Dave Held had a tube cradle for sale that was intended for a V8 swap. I would think that a smaller version could be created that would allow the removal of the entire rear frame. It could be bolt on/weld on tube rear with the mounting points for the body and suspension. If kept at or around $500 - $750, I bet it would sell.

Rob
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fierosound
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Report this Post03-09-2013 10:41 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
 
quote
Originally posted by qwikgta:

A few months ago Dave Held had a tube cradle for sale that was intended for a V8 swap.



Held's products http://www.team321.com/MidE...ngineCradlehome.html

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3.4L Supercharged 87 GT and Super Duty 4 Indy #163

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TRiAD
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Report this Post03-09-2013 06:20 PM Click Here to See the Profile for TRiADSend a Private Message to TRiADEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I've often wondered about this myself.
Really, a full tubeframe replacement, with aluminum paneling (similar to Factory Five) should be possible.
Even putting in the "pad" mounting points for the body panels (like Pontiac did) should work.
Making a jig to either drill all those mounting points at once or solid jigs to do them accurately 1 at a time would be one of the harder parts I would think.
You'd only need to decide; '84-'87 or '88 (I'd go '88), and you'd need a couple of cradle options (some V8 swaps require modifying the cradle).
Then sell it as a chassis, buyer adds their body, interior, drivetrain, etc, and voila, you have a "(better than) new" (expensive) Fiero.

I doubt this would ever be a money-maker, but it would be an incredible service to the community.

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~Michael
'85 GT 4sp white - SOLD | | '85 2M6 Auto red - SOLD | | '84 2M4 bare chassis - SOLD
Crap, I'm out of Fieros! Time to buy another!! - "Your mileage may vary."
WTB: Formula 5sp

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FFIEROFRED
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Report this Post03-09-2013 09:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for FFIEROFREDClick Here to Email FFIEROFREDSend a Private Message to FFIEROFREDEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
the "alcan" space frame was bonded, not spot welded. That was why it was so strong.
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retroman
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Report this Post03-09-2013 09:49 PM Click Here to See the Profile for retromanClick Here to Email retromanSend a Private Message to retromanEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I would do it sans cradle and doors at first, then maybe offer them separately or as an option later. Another thing that I think we could look at is having a chop top option. Having the frames made as chop tops to begin with would eliminate a step and make it easier for people to own one, but I don't know. I think the easiest thing to do is to start as small as possible, and expand as the business allows.
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hyperv6
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Report this Post03-10-2013 05:21 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The simple fact is economic and demand are just not here for this kind of project.

It would not be cheap no matter how simple you keep it. Also there are so many Fiero's still sitting around with bad engines etc but with rust free space frames you can buy the entire car for lot less than to buy a repo.

Repo parts on this scale need to be of the Camaro, 57 Chevy and 32 Ford scale of demand. I just do not see the demand and for those who would want it would not pay that high of a price. Just look at how hard it is to get simple easy parts made for restoration of a stock Fiero.

If you can't reproduce a set of T top gasket reasonable and get anyone to buy them then a project this large is off the chart.

Sorry if I am bursting the balloon here but some times reality sucks.
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AL87
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Report this Post03-10-2013 05:43 PM Click Here to See the Profile for AL87Click Here to Email AL87Send a Private Message to AL87Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If I had the millions... I'd reproduce the frame

Also I dont think one would have to add anything to make the car stronger/stiffer.
One could simply seam weld every piece together on top of the stock spot welding to increase rigidity...
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goatvenom
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Report this Post03-10-2013 08:19 PM Click Here to See the Profile for goatvenomClick Here to Email goatvenomSend a Private Message to goatvenomEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
good fieros are almost extinct in the area i live. i would buy a new fiero frame and rebuild it from mine, i would pay the 13k if the frame was exactly the same as the fiero or may be even more if it weight considerable less. them make custom cradles so i could throw what ever engine i desired in it.

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

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McGoo
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Report this Post03-10-2013 08:31 PM Click Here to See the Profile for McGooSend a Private Message to McGooEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I wonder if it would be more cost effective to design an aluminum monocoque chassis with an aluminum rear subframe like the SLC. This car is very interesting and the chassis is offered for around $10,000. These could be made one at a time and require none of the complexities of copying a mass produced space frame. Stacey Davids build videos show this chassis in detail and can be seen at superlitecars.com. On another note, I wonder if the fiero frame could be modified to accept a late model aluminum cradle and suspension in it's stock form. The epsilon platform (Malibu, G6, Aura) is within a half an inch of the fiero's track width. Just a thought.

McGoo

Edit: Upon further investigation, it appears the epsilon cradles are most likely steel. Would still be cool though, 252 hp 3.6 VVT V6 mated to a 6 speed shiftable automatic with tap shift on the steering wheel. It would also have upgraded brakes and traction control.

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

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BV MotorSports
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Report this Post03-10-2013 11:09 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BV MotorSportsClick Here to Email BV MotorSportsSend a Private Message to BV MotorSportsEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Wasn't there a guy on here that made aluminum bumper and door beams?
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hyperv6
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Report this Post03-11-2013 05:53 AM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
$13K and 10K for a clean frame?

You do know you can buy a low mileage 88 GT for less. I have pass over GTs that have had around 10K miles and never saw weather for $8K complete. These cars are still around. Even a lesser clean car can be found if you really want one for less. You may have to go more then 20 miles to get it but they are often for sale. Even some of the GM show cars only sold for around $17K complete.

The best thing anyone could do right now is to make patch panels for those who have a lot invested in their cars that have found common repairable sections that need replaced.

If you are going to dream may as well make it with a carbon fiber tub.
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