Found a few reasons why I think the car is a bit on the slow side. Most importantly the brakes are dragging a little, notably on the driver's rear. Then I think the engine is choking out a bit in the higher revs because of the "pretty" intake I've chosen and the "just get it together" accordion hoses between the MAF and stock air filter canister. I'd really like to keep the stock air filter but the angle for the outlet just isn't very reasonable with the MAF sensor's location. So then here are my plans I think.
1. Fix the front end loose/alignment issue so the car is safe to drive for the last month of the season. 2. Install the shift cables I just received in the mail and work on the exhaust crossover pipe clearance for them at the same time. 3. The stock brakes are basically done for, one leaky rear caliper, one seemingly stiff, and the pads and rotors are finished. Hopefully they'll last a bit longer and I'll being the brake upgrade I've accumulated all of the parts for. 4. Fabricate a custom "cold air intake" with a cone filter in the wheel well and change over to the "3400 SFI" upper intake plenum and throttle body I have lying around. I'll consider grinding off the lettering, painting it red, and adding my "Fiero GT" sticker. 5. Clean up the wiring, finish splicing in the 2.8's oil pressure sensor (stock LNJ sensor didn't work with the Fiero gauge.) 6. Get the engine dialed in properly, probably in the spring.
After these are complete the drive train should basically be ready to go and I can start on body work (it really needs chips in the hood and roof fixed and new paint...)
I'll try to get some data on how this engine, trans, and suspension combination do. Performance, MPG, you name it. Almost made it to the last autocross event of the year (tomorrow) but just ran out of time by going in two different directions with both of my project cars simultaneously.
Originally posted by 34blazer660:
theres a guy over in strongsville that can probably help with the tune, pm me if you want his contact info
Finally got around to working on my engine after it suddenly broke down last year. Now that I have my own garage I can work on it anytime without getting in the way at the shop I used to work at.
So here's the problem. The Key sheared on the crank mounted timing sprocket. This is pretty surprising, I'm not sure what could have caused it?
Hard to see with the compressed pictures but the keyway looks ok. I think I can just replace the key with one of a stronger material and not worry about it. There doesn't seem to be any scoring from the sprocket spinning freely.
So now for the damages. There didn't seem to be any obvious damage of the valvetrain when I pulled the lower intake so I pulled one of the heads. I spy bend valves...Not terrible but not useable anymore. The center intake valve looks the worst on this head. Then I took a look at the pistons and yup, got some valve shaped dents.
So the plan? Well the pistons should be ok to keep running correct? I'll just try and debur around the dents to avoid any hotspots if possible and clean up any metal fragments. I'll send my heads to WOT-Tech for porting and larger 3500 valves. I'll probably also need a valve job but hopefully won't need any other machine work because the engine is basically brand new.
On a side note I apologize for the pictures going down. I've been slowly working on updating them using PIP so this won't happen again.
The key is to align the sprocket during assembly. The key should *NOT* see any drive load during operation. If the key is sheared, it means that something else went wrong such that the key was seeing drive loads.
The sprocket should be driven by the clamp force from the balancer.
The balancer could have been too loose or too tight on the crank.
Too loose, along with inadequate torque on the crank bolt, would have resulted in inadequate clamp force on the timing sprocket, which would have loaded the key. Too tight, and the appropriate torque on the balancer bolt would have resulted in insufficient clamping torque on the sprocket.
Well after all this time I've finally got my engine back in the car and driving. After I bent all of the valves, I spent a good chunk of change sending the heads and intakes to WOT-Tech for Stage 2 porting all around, 3500 valves, and used the better flowing upper intake manifold ported for the 65mm Shortstar throttle body. I also went ahead and did some modifications to my Trueleo headers (crossover pipe actually) by moving it down towards the transmission for correct 4 speed shift cable clearance and further away from the thermostat housing.
The brakes were installed after a long list of issues. 1989 Grand Am front calipers with 1985 Seville/Toronado rear calipers. New Fiero Store stainless brake hardlines were installed after I found the ends on the rear bend and pinched closed. The rest of the brake lines were in awful condition so it was time for the full set. Now I also have the Fiero Store braided stainless hoses but I think they ended up giving me 4 front hoses because they were all the same length and it seems a little odd on the rear (but no complaints because of how I was able to route them is still smooth.) After going through this the pedal feel was pretty awful and was barely drivable. I decided it had to be the master cylinder so purchased a rebuilt 1994 FULL SIZE Blazer master cylinder M2219 at Autozone. After bleeding the system again the pedal feels great and I am very happy with the outcome.
There is still a list of to-dos before I deem the engine swap complete but I am happy to have a driving car again. So far I've driven it around town and an hour round trip to work without issue. The suspension doesn't seem quite right anymore so I'll need to take a look at it and get it aligned (I know I need a new front inner tie rod again at the very least.) Pictures to come once I get back to organizing (as well as fixing all of the missing pictures throughout this thread. PIP is your friend)
Ok all of the pictures have been updated throughout this thread to PIP. They all should work and be organized correctly, I even added a few more. Now it's time to list off a ton of pictures for the 2nd engine build I just finished this spring.
Here are the Stage 2 ported heads from WOT-Tech with 3500 valves installed. Same Comp springs I installed last time.
ARP Head studs
LA1 upper intake ported stage 2 WOT-Tech. 3400 SFI removed, inlet bore ported to 65mm, EGR port cut and welded.
Lower intake ported Stage 2 WOT-Tech
Removed the damaged crank key and bought a new one from GM.
Here are some pictures of the engine assembly:
Found a Shortstar 65mm throttle body at Pull-A-Part
ARP Header Studs installed
Throttle Body Adapter WOT-Tech, gasket matching:
Headers installed again, the VHT Paint did not hold up one bit...
New shift cables from Rodney Dickman, fantastic units. I really screwed the original ones up with the exhaust being in the way. They were too bent and busted.
Engine back on the trans and cradle!
Engine back in the car
Decided to modify my exhaust myself. Used the "tape welding" technique to align all of the cut pieces before tacking.
Here is how I cut the shortstar throttle bracket shorter to use my stock 86 GT throttle cable
Once I finished all of this, the engine started promptly and ran great. I thought all I had left was to bleed the brakes and take it for a test drive....That turned out to be a whole other set of problems which I'll get into next time.
Bleed the brakes and go for a test drive right? Nope, it looks like the rear brake lines were damaged last time I pulled the engine (must have forgotten to disconnect them and crimped the line.) First I was going to try bend my own lines because everyone was saying how easy it was and you'll save money. After trying to get all of the components for this car's jumble of metric and American sizes, plus needing a flaring tool for the European bubble flare, the price saving really didn't seem worth my time. So I bought Fiero Store stainless lines instead and called it a day.
Installed the new lines and brake calipers I bought years ago.
This is the Grand Am/Seville brake upgrade which allows the use of stock wheels.
Of course trying to bleed the brakes was a hassle again. The pedal would be firm if pressed quickly but bleed off and if you pressed slowly it had hardly any feel. After messing with the rear caliper parking brake adjustment, the pedal felt better but still wasn't where it needed to be so I decided to try out the FULL SIZE Blazer master cylinder, Autozone M2219. It was quite easy to bench bleed with the plugs included and bolted right up in place of the stock Fiero master cylinder using the Fiero reservoir.
I now have no complaints with the brakes and have driven the car around 300 miles or so. Everything seems to be in working order with the brakes and engine so it's nearly time to get down with the details. The headers need to be removed for ceramic coating (not doing that junk VHT paint again.) I need to wire up the Fiero 2.8L oil pressure sensor. The air intake isn't finished as it currently is just a filter sitting on the end of the MAF. I've already removed the water separator and plan to run a tube down in front of the fender well, as is so commonly done. Wiring is still a bit of a nightmare in the cabin. It needs to be shortened (kept all of the extra wire in case I wanted to reroute the harness) and the ECU fixed in the stock location. I still also need a real dogbone mount and build the AC line to hook up the compressor.
The front end I was told by the alignment shop was a tie rod, which was weird because I just replaced all of them. Now after some research, I think the issue is the steering rack itself. I'll have to tear it down, clean it up and replace the bushings.
There is still a good amount of work to do to finish the suspension and drive train but having the car in your possession instead of it sitting in pieces in another location really helps your motivation. I sure can't wait to move onto paint so I can be proud to show off my handy work (the interior really doesn't need much to look good, it's in very good condition for it's age.)