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What say ye..... by Pete Matos
Started on: 05-29-2010 10:42 PM
Replies: 30
Last post by: Jake_Dragon on 05-31-2010 09:10 PM
Pete Matos
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Report this Post05-29-2010 10:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosDirect Link to This Post
Hey guys,
I have a dilemma here..... I recently bought this 86 Fiero GT. It has quickly become the most pleasureable car I have ever owned and that includes some nice mustang 5.0s a gorgeous 1993 Ford Probe GT, and several nice Hondas as well as other odds and ends sportscars. This car just downright makes me smile every time I get into it. It has the factory six cylinder which seems to run very well and the car only has around 93k on it. It also has the four speed tranny which I at first was thinking I would not like but now that I drive it every day it is just awesome. This car seems very quick and pulls real hard for a stocker. I am currently working on the interior and then onto the paint and I recently bought some very nice wheels for it with some nexxen z rateds.... Here is the problem!!


I bought this car with a motor and a lot of parts to install it, it is a 3800 scII engine and I was very excited about installing it. I have read a lot about these motors on this forum and elsewhere and they are certainly awesome motors but I have also read a lot of threads where these motors once all the work was done and installed and tuned have suffered catastrophic failures for one reason or another. The only other engine swaps that put out reasonably good power and torque seem to be either the small block chevy in one iteration or another or the Northstar. I cannot afford the N star and while I am electrically and mechanically inclined generally I am kinda put off by the considerable wiring and computer setup involved with many of these engines....

I have seen a couple local fieros on craigslist that have v8 engines in them and actually called to talk to several of them and it always seems that they say the cars run great and are pretty reliable as well as fast. I want my GT to be a nice clean fast car that you can get in and drive without drama. I do not need nor do I expect the fastest fiero ever. I am on a considerable budget with kids, a wife and mortgage payments so a high dollar build is kinda out of the question. It seems that with all of that in mind I have been pondering selling this motor and getting a crate v8 or buying a running 350 out of some not so worn out car and machine my own engine plate on my cnc mill.... I guess what I am saying is that I am kinda put off by the whole tuning and wiring and fuel injection thing and I am wondering what a well built well setup carbed v8 would be like in the fiero..... I know about California kids car and it looks VERY nice and I have seen others but just what would you guys say is the best all around performer/bang for the buck/ easiest to install powertrain that would retain the four speed I now love and will be reliable? Any ideas?

I will try to post the very FIRST pictures of my new fiero GT so that you can all see what I am working with.... I really love this car!!!!









The car is in overall good shape but it is in need of a paint job bad..... that will have to wait for my hood and side scoop mods as well as possibly the decklid as well.... I also intend to lower it a bit.... The wheels are the Beasts with chrome in 18x8 38mm backspacing and the tires are 225 40 18 zr nexxens....

I recently installed a very sweet Alpine head unit with bluetooth and it makes the drive much more pleasureable. I just need to replace the front speakers, someone already put pioneers in the back, than a subwoofer down the road..... Whaddya guys think? peace
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Report this Post05-29-2010 10:46 PM Click Here to See the Profile for HockadaySend a Private Message to HockadayDirect Link to This Post
if you dont want to mess with ecus etc ( aka black magic ) i suggest deciding what engine you would like and then carbing it.

imho v8 or go home but thats me. many others love the 3800 look at fierox's car. 6 just isnt my style. could also do a straight engine.
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Pete Matos
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Report this Post05-29-2010 11:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosDirect Link to This Post
That is kinda what I am thinking too. I am sure it would be cool to have forced induction. My Parents used to have a brand new 86 Corvette. I remember when they brought it home. That was a wicked car and I wanted to drive it so bad.... Of course being only 15 that was not gonna happen. I kinda think of this fiero as my chance to get into a car that has the performance and handling of that vette only with the mid engine and a much lighter smaller car... It would be just sweet to have the kind of power that car had in this little fiero. That is another reason why I am considering the v8 with a quality carb setup.... It would probably be the easiest and cheapest route to go and still have the performance I want. Lets face it you can build a small block to have serious horsepower if you want it and even stock I am sure it would be pretty darn quick.... I also like the grunt of the v8 since I had all those 5.0 mustangs.... The fiero is nicer tho because it just plain handles.... Just needs more power right!!! Not that it is slow right now really, I am kinda impressed with the car stock. I may have been lucky enough to get the four speed that has the more dragstrip gearing because It seems to turn around 2400 rpm at freeway speeds... Not much of a high speed runner but I really would rather get out of the hole in a hurry and run up to around a hundred with authority than go 150 or whatever, the low end is obviously more useable and enjoyable in everyday driving.... Whaddya think? peace

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Report this Post05-30-2010 12:06 AM Click Here to See the Profile for HockadaySend a Private Message to HockadayDirect Link to This Post
yeah carb a v8 or easiest would be carb a 3.4 v6. idk if i want a northstar or a sbc...either way you'll do ok.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 12:45 AM Click Here to See the Profile for litespdSend a Private Message to litespdDirect Link to This Post
If you go the V8 route...and you build it for some "serious horsepower", as you put it, you can figure you're going to have to change the transmission, too. Many people on the forum with V8 engines have had to change the transmission at least once, due to breakage. The Fiero transmissions just aren't built to withstand that much torque. As far as wiring goes, I imagine you'll have to do just as much wiring with a V8 as you would with any other swap. Carbing it will make it a little easier, but you still need to adapt some of the wiring. And, you still have to build an adapter for the trans, and figure out all of the exhaust, cooling, etc. I imagine (I don't know for a fact, though), that the 3800 SC in stock form isn't going to put out the torque of a V8...and so, your stock transmission might have a change to live a little bit longer behind it. All of this, though, is my own opinion...I'm sure that someone can, and will, refute everything I wrote above. Personally, if I were to a swap, I'd be torn....I love the sound of a V8, yet really like the fact that the 3800 SC is supercharged, and bolts right up to the existing tranny.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 12:51 AM Click Here to See the Profile for FierokingClick Here to visit Fieroking's HomePageClick Here to Email FierokingSend a Private Message to FierokingDirect Link to This Post
Carbs are soooo old school !! Fuel injection is way better. Wiring harnesses for the 3800 sc are available, you have the engine just buy a harness.

Joe Sokol

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88 Formula/GT 4.9 Allante Intake (My Baby)

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Report this Post05-30-2010 12:54 AM Click Here to See the Profile for jokerb90Send a Private Message to jokerb90Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by litespd:

I love the sound of a V8, yet really like the fact that the 3800 SC is supercharged, and bolts right up to the existing tranny.


4.9 V8 bolts up too, but you'll lose some hp with a carb...

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Pete Matos
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Report this Post05-30-2010 01:10 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosDirect Link to This Post
Actually what I said is that you can build a v8 350 to get some serious horsepower, I did not say that I was going to do that. I did however say that I want a nice clean reliable fast car that is not a grenade and is
the most cost effective way to get the power I want. I fully enderstand that carbs are old school, that is pretty much what I like about them. No crazy wiring or tuning to worry about. Just a quality well setup carb and some much less complicated wiring and you could have an easy 300 hp in there. I am a newbie here but I have built a few motors over the years just never put one in a fiero. I have ridden in a 3800 scII car that was pretty well modded and it was VERY FAST but it also has unfortunately let go on him. He is now taking it back out and having to redo it. I do not have money to be having to redo things and anytime you swap engines into a car there are no guarantees but I need to find the cheapest best route for the least amount of cash to get what I want. I certainly do not mind doing the work and I have a shop full of tools and welders fabbing stuff so that is not a problem. This is gonna be a dialy driven car and a weekend plaything too so I have to be able to depend on it as much as possible. I do have three cars tho in case....

I suppose that a question like this is polarizing and people will recommend what they have most times but I was hoping to get ideas about the best alternative here for me. I just finished reading a thread where a fellow rebuilt a 305 for a fiero and it sounded VERY nice and seemed to run good. There was not any continuation of the thread tho but it does make me think that an old school v8 with a good carb and intake over a well built 350 with a mild cam and decent HP would make for a pretty reliable ride as well as a very fun car.....

I have read a great many posts about the benefits of the different trannys and from what I have read most say that the four speeds are pretty stout even under some relatively high HP motors.... I do not have the money to swap in a f40 and I would never run an automatic so I feel like I have a good setup here. I do not intend to run the crap outta the car anyways, I do however love the feel of a powerful car accellerating up a freeway onramp or down a country road.... The question is what motor would you use? I realize I already have the 3.8 but I could surely sell that to get a nice v8 if I wanted to so that is not a deal maker... How many on here have homebuilt 3800 installs that can say that are TRULY reliable cars? I would love to hear about them.... I just do not know really. I know that there are a great many of these motors in fieros now, surely some are reliable daily driven vehicles? As far as the sound of the engines go, after hearing the 3800 sc in the car I got a ride in they both sound awesome so no real issue there. Anyways, I am open to ideas here guys, gimme your best recommendations please? peace


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Report this Post05-30-2010 01:17 AM Click Here to See the Profile for HockadaySend a Private Message to HockadayDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Fieroking:

Carbs are soooo old school !! Fuel injection is way better. Wiring harnesses for the 3800 sc are available, you have the engine just buy a harness.

Joe Sokol



carbs are still better imo. sound better and are better performance. atleast use to be...plus they're just cooler. efi is just...meh...alot of problems. if you're gonna do a v8 efi is sacrilige imo.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 01:40 AM Click Here to See the Profile for carbonSend a Private Message to carbonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Hockaday:
carbs are still better imo. sound better and are better performance. atleast use to be...plus they're just cooler. efi is just...meh...alot of problems. if you're gonna do a v8 efi is sacrilige imo.


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Report this Post05-30-2010 01:50 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Custom2M4Click Here to Email Custom2M4Send a Private Message to Custom2M4Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Hockaday:


carbs are still better imo. sound better and are better performance. atleast use to be...plus they're just cooler. efi is just...meh...alot of problems. if you're gonna do a v8 efi is sacrilige imo.


Carbs are better, Until 1986.
Sound Better, If you want to sound like every chevy half ton on the block.
Better Performance, In ideal conditions after tuning it every day.
Cooler, They actually won't run any cooler.
EFI alot of problems, if your an idiot.
V8 EFI sacrilige, My Northstar disagrees.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 09:29 AM Click Here to See the Profile for IsoldeSend a Private Message to IsoldeDirect Link to This Post
Do the carb 350. so many good ways to go. nearly all of them stronger than a stock L67. all stronger than a 4.9 cad.

[This message has been edited by Isolde (edited 05-30-2010).]

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Report this Post05-30-2010 09:45 AM Click Here to See the Profile for whodeanieClick Here to visit whodeanie's HomePageClick Here to Email whodeanieSend a Private Message to whodeanieDirect Link to This Post
what ever you decide would be right for you, that is why their are so many swaps, no one fits all.
but if you do go with a V8 I would still say use fuel injection you will get better performance and use less gas. now a days you can get a stand alone setup that is easy to install and tune. I have worked on several carbs and fuel injection setups and I used to prefer carbs as well but now the fuel injection is easyer and way more reliable.
just my 2 cents.
D.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 11:40 AM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyDirect Link to This Post
If you want the cheapest, easiest swap for a bit of a performance win, rather than a larger gain, the best way to go is a 3.4 60deg v6 with the Fiero (or Trueleo) intake, and the Fiero electronics.

If you've already got a 3800scII though, I would just go that route. Any engine you don't already have sitting around is probably going to be a larger investment until you sell off parts to compensate.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 11:46 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Carver1Click Here to Email Carver1Send a Private Message to Carver1Direct Link to This Post
Cheap. Reliable. Fast. You can only pick two.

If you are having a blast with what you got, why not wait until you need to change it? I am always tearing into mine, but I hardly get to drive it because of that. I always swear that my next one will just be a driver, and no more mods! it never happens.

The only way I would be content, is if I had one in the garage all the time, and one in the driveway for fun.

NICE car BTW.
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Report this Post05-30-2010 10:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Rck152Click Here to Email Rck152Send a Private Message to Rck152Direct Link to This Post
mod what you have. the 2.8's maybe not the badest on the block but with a few tweaks here and there do well.
extra hp is good but remeber that you only have a ten gallon tank. "passing everything but the gas station".


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It's A Pontiac thing What else Can I say??????
1985 Fiero GT
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Pete Matos
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Report this Post05-31-2010 01:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosDirect Link to This Post
Interesting ideas here. I gotta admit that my car is running pretty well and is NO slouch when it comes to acceleration but I do intend to install another motor at some point soon once I get it painted and the interior finished. I am just trying to decide what way I want to go so I have a good plan ready. I am still looking for peoples opinions as to wether or not a 3.8sc can be a reliable daily driver or not..... anyone got one? The chevy engine is a proven entity of course and while I would love to have a nice fuel injection setup I have owned too many cars with carbs that were dead reliable. You just gotta buy a quality carb that is setup properly for the engine and your performance goals and preferrably a new one. The bummer here is of course the aluminum tranny adapter plate. Anyone know where I can get a drawing of one somewhere, I can machine it on my new cnc mill I am sure..... With a plate ready I am quite sure I could install the motor and get the thing plumbed with cooling and exhaust and whatnot. That is the stuff I am used to... I know that some have made their own the old fashioned way and that is cool too but if there is a drawing or better yet a DXF somewhere that would be sweet. I am really not sure what to do tho overall, I do already have the 3.8 here and I could save up to buy a harness and you can even buy custom mounts for it.... this will all add up tho and I have to add into that the exhaust system, any additional parts necessary for the install and whatnot. I am trying to build a very nice car here but I gotta do it frugally that is for sure. ANY way I can make the parts myself, install them myself, or wire it myself will help me reach my goals.... In fact I was just experimenting with the paint options....... I will post that in another thread tho.... peace


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Report this Post05-31-2010 04:06 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyDirect Link to This Post
It sounds to me like the best route for you to go for now if you want a little bit of power and be a reliable daily driver is to go with a larger 60 deg V6 than the 2.8 (probably a 3.4), and maybe upgrade the ECM to the 7730 out of the newer GM cars with the knock sensor and a few other things. The ECM upgrade thread is //www.fiero.nl/forum/Forum3/HTML/000088.html and is a good way to sort of 'get in touch' with the Fiero harness and what you might need to do for swapping in a different setup all together.

The 3.4 will get you more power, and be reliable, and you don't really need to worry about a custom harness, adapter plate, or engine/trans mounts for it. If you do the engine and the ECM both, you'll get some experience doing a swap, and learn how tough it might be to do the more invasive engine swaps, but not worry about having to spend too much money just to start. And you can keep the 3800SC around to swap in later for a bigger power upgrade. I believe the 3800s are pretty dependable and drivable. They did put them in the Bonneville and Buicks, rather than a sports car. It just depends on how much you mod it, and how you drive it.
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Report this Post05-31-2010 04:38 PM Click Here to See the Profile for aaronkochClick Here to Email aaronkochSend a Private Message to aaronkochDirect Link to This Post
Ahh yes, carbs, gasoline washing down the cylinder walls, chokes, cold start nightmares, vapor lock, changing jets, adjusting for every different altitude you drive through, 11-12:1 AFR, what's not to love?

/sarcasm
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Report this Post05-31-2010 04:42 PM Click Here to See the Profile for HockadaySend a Private Message to HockadayDirect Link to This Post
i just love the sound of a 750 barrel carb sucking in air etc. efi is easier now im sure with all the tuners etc. but carbs still look cooler haha

carbs have tuneable jets etc also

[This message has been edited by Hockaday (edited 05-31-2010).]

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Pete Matos
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Report this Post05-31-2010 05:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosDirect Link to This Post
Hey to each his own, ya cannot deny all of the hotrods out there going crazy fast down the dragstrip with carbs and to be honest the only carb I ever had any issues with was the factory carb on my old Suzuki samurai. I beleive it was a hitachi carb and had all manner of spaghetti coming outta it. I replaced it with a Weber 32-36 and the only time I had to work on it was a little tweak of a screw ever change from winter to summer. Other than that is just plain ran great....

I have not ever seen a 3.4 so I cannot comment on it. Obviously it is a lesser performance engine than the 3800 or the 350.....? I would only change the engine out to get a considerable change in performance, thus the 3800 or 350, other than that I would just keep the stock motor.... it is pretty fast that way with only apparently 145hp? The chevy engine would no doubt double that as would the 3.8.... I bought this car as a fun daily driver with aspirations of making it a great handling fast car. The stock engine is fine as I said but the reason I am thinking about a swap is as usual, MORE POWER!!!!!

Pete

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Report this Post05-31-2010 05:15 PM Click Here to See the Profile for IsoldeSend a Private Message to IsoldeDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by aaronkoch:

Ahh yes, carbs, gasoline washing down the cylinder walls, chokes, cold start nightmares, vapor lock, changing jets, adjusting for every different altitude you drive through, 11-12:1 AFR, what's not to love?

/sarcasm


Yes, you can have all of that with carburetion, but QJs will run fine as lean as 17:1, at which point there is no fuel wash. the only vapor lock I ever had was on TBI engines, not carbs. Adjusting for elevation somewhat depends on how much you travel, and how far from home you go. Chokes and cold starts are no trouble if you know how to set them up right in the first place. Changing jets? Not with an Edelbrock.
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Report this Post05-31-2010 06:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
I'm not going to read all of that, build what you want. My carb SBC rocks. 5 wires going to the engine.

You can make it as simple or complex as you want. Now I'm not all set against EFI but if you have a running engine and it already has the carb on it then nothing wrong with using it.
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Report this Post05-31-2010 06:56 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Pete MatosSend a Private Message to Pete MatosDirect Link to This Post
Well now, so you say you have a fiero do ya, one with a carbuereted motor do ya, and one with a 350 carb'd motor do ya..... well what the hell man, lets see some pictures!!! Got any idea what it will run in the quarter? I talked to the last fellow that had a 350 in his fiero and he seemed to think it just plain flew!! I am sure it will be quick, and the nice thing is that there are literally millions of aftermarket parts for it so that has got to count for something right.... Nevermind what it would sound like... I have never personally seen one in person but I am sure it must growl pretty good.... wish you were closer I would like to come see it... peace

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Report this Post05-31-2010 07:46 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Hockaday:
carbs have tuneable jets etc also


How do you tune jets on a carb while driving 80mph down the highway?
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Report this Post05-31-2010 07:55 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Pete Matos:
I have not ever seen a 3.4 so I cannot comment on it. Obviously it is a lesser performance engine than the 3800 or the 350.....? I would only change the engine out to get a considerable change in performance, thus the 3800 or 350, other than that I would just keep the stock motor.... it is pretty fast that way with only apparently 145hp? The chevy engine would no doubt double that as would the 3.8.... I bought this car as a fun daily driver with aspirations of making it a great handling fast car. The stock engine is fine as I said but the reason I am thinking about a swap is as usual, MORE POWER!!!!!


Yes, but how much more? I don't know how much the 3.4 makes, but I would guess around 200 at the flywheel without mods. I think the earlier 4th gen F-body V6 cars were rated at 185, and they're a fair bit stronger than the 2.8. With the 7730 ECM and a 3.4, it shouldn't be very hard at all to get 250 at the flywheel. The 3800 SC will give you that as well, but the swap is going to be more involved. I'm just suggesting what the best option I think you should go for, given what you want to put into doing it, and how much benefit you want to get out of it. If you want 300+ hp at the flywheel, then just go with the 3800 SC. You've already got the engine, so it's not like you have to go spend another grand just to get started. Plus it's been done a million times already, and there's plenty of info on it. You can do whatever you want with your car, but I'm not sure you know what you want exactly. The 3.4 is a cheap/easy swap that will give you more power and if you don't know what you want at the end of the project, it's a good place to start at least. If you don't know what you want for sure, you can swap in 20 different engines and never get there.
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Report this Post05-31-2010 08:00 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Pete Matos:

Well now, so you say you have a fiero do ya, one with a carbuereted motor do ya, and one with a 350 carb'd motor do ya..... well what the hell man, lets see some pictures!!! Got any idea what it will run in the quarter? I talked to the last fellow that had a 350 in his fiero and he seemed to think it just plain flew!! I am sure it will be quick, and the nice thing is that there are literally millions of aftermarket parts for it so that has got to count for something right.... Nevermind what it would sound like... I have never personally seen one in person but I am sure it must growl pretty good.... wish you were closer I would like to come see it... peace

Pete




I don't have a build thread. I have been working on the car for a long time, lost interest in it a few times but its still under my skin.
Its a bored 60 over with an after market cam, I don't have the specs on the cam. The heads have had a lot of bench work, port and polish work. The carb is a edelbrock 600 mechanical secondaries. Sanderson headers and moroso mufflers.
The kit is an Archie kit, I purchased it used. I have a 5 speed but if I ever get the money up I will swap in a 6 speed.


I have an 84 Corvette with a 96 sbc installed, lots of work to the block and heads, lots of go fast part but the Fiero is quicker by far.

[This message has been edited by Jake_Dragon (edited 05-31-2010).]

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dobey
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Report this Post05-31-2010 08:02 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Pete Matos:
Well now, so you say you have a fiero do ya, one with a carbuereted motor do ya, and one with a 350 carb'd motor do ya..... well what the hell man, lets see some pictures!!! Got any idea what it will run in the quarter? I talked to the last fellow that had a 350 in his fiero and he seemed to think it just plain flew!!


There are lots of pics of carbed V8s and V6s in Fieros on here, and on YouTube, and 3800s too. Personally, I'm going with a slightly modded LS4 in my car, mated to the F40-MT2 6 speed. But it sounds like you need to spend some time on YouTube and going through the forums to figure out what you want exactly. And spend the YouTube time on a computer with a reasonably good sound system (with a subwoofer), and not just 2 speakers or on an iPhone or something.

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Jake_Dragon
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Report this Post05-31-2010 08:05 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
Smart money

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Rck152
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Report this Post05-31-2010 09:02 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Rck152Click Here to Email Rck152Send a Private Message to Rck152Direct Link to This Post
2.2? not a common choice. hows the mpg?

------------------
Robb.
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It's A Pontiac thing What else Can I say??????
1985 Fiero GT
1998 Sunfire Turbocharged
1996 Grand Prix
now1987 fiero cp

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Report this Post05-31-2010 09:10 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Rck152:

2.2? not a common choice. hows the mpg?



Not bad, last time I checked it was somewhere around 24 in town. It needs a tune up and the thermostat installed then it should do even better.
Forumlagator installed it and I purchased it after it had been sold a couple of times.
Its pretty rough but it gets the job done.
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