Just stopping in to say hello. I've been lurking on here for about 18 years. I had an 87 SE when I was around 17 or 18 years old (back in 2000). Then had a non-running 85 GT, that I kept intending on fixing up, but never got around to. Then life happened, and I moved on to many other toy cars over the years. Got rid of my last fun car before last winter (05 Mazda RX8). Now, finally decided to look for a GT Fastback, and found and picked up the one below on Tuesday. Been looking at parts and things that I am intending or wanting to do on it, and it's definitely not like it used to be. Not easy to source many things anymore.
She shows pretty good in pictures, but the paint is a bit rougher than I would like. I haven't given it a good buff or wax yet, so that may help. I'm not a huge fan of the tail lights, especially because the previous owner modified the original tails to fab these together (Under that paint and round tail lights is the original tail light assemblies. So, they're ruined. He did a terrible job on the left side lights, as well. Whatever resin he used, he definitely didn't smooth out very well on the left side.) It has the fiero store ocelot exhaust system, which sounds great, but there is a small exhaust leak somewhere that I haven't had the time to locate yet. Unsure if that is a gasket crack, or loose bolt, or bad weld. Time will tell. Interior looks pretty rough. Has seat covers, of which the driver's side cover is pretty ruined. The elastic that is holding it on underneath is knotted all to hell, so I'll probably just cut it off. From what I can get to and see, the drivers side seat underneath is in perfect condition. However, the passenger side seat is rough underneath. From what I could get to without messing up the seat cover, I found the side bolster is torn and covered in duct tape. All of the rubber covers around the center console, battery and oil gauge box, dash, etc. all is pulling away. Not sure what I'm going to do about that yet. I may try to pull it all and scrape all the foam out and fill it with glue and clamp it, as from what I can see, I'm not going to find any interior replacement parts to purchase. I also really need to replace the steering wheel, as this one has not aged well, and gets all sticky if you drive very far. (I drove it home 2.5 hours).
Mechanically, it is running pretty well. When warm, it seems the oil pressure dances low at idle, but oil seems clean and it hasn't burned any, and no leaks. May just try a thicker oil. I have receipts from every single thing that's been done to it (haven't itemized them all out yet, as it was an old dude that just had a stack of receipts, nothing itemized or organized. He rattled off a billion things he's already done, and said it's all in the stack, so once I have a moment to go through it all, I'll throw it all in a spreadsheet to see where I'm at. Steering isn't amazingly tight, and feels a little vague (especially when you hit bumps or go up and down any dips). I'm thinking it feels like tie rods. Haven't had a chance to jack it up and wiggle the tires or anything yet. Been working all week.
The price was right, and worth the trip. The wife wasn't keen on me breaking the bank, so this will do. Gives me a good place to start, but there are a lot of things I'm wanting to correct on it. Where would you all start?
Welcome to the madness. Where I would start. Pulling back the carpet and rear wheel wells if you didn’t check for rust already. Brakes especially if it set for awhile. Exhaust leak, some one here had electrical issues following a leak.
Hi K - welcome and nice to have you back into the Fiero scene. Looks like you got a bunch of places to "start" your rebuild. Here's where I'd start. Assuming you'll be driving the car, Id take a serious look at your front suspension. If you have a bad ball joint or tie rod end, and something snaps while your going down the highway, your new fiero toy may be ready for the junkyard. We all don't want that to happen. Your safety is just as important. Since you drove the car over 2 hours home, sounds like everything else is intact enough to hold out until you get to it. Do the oil change and check those breaks too. I personally don't like those tail lights, but that's your call. I keep my Fiero close to stock so everybody who see's the car see's exactly what a Fiero is. They all seem to love the car. I do have functional side scoops and hood vents though. I have the Ocelot system too and like it a lot. I see your out there in York Pa. I was driving to Oley Pa. for months doing a total rebuild on my 88 Formula back in 2000. The great guy is Jim, wonder if he's still around Fiero wise. That's a real nice car you have there, Best of luck with it.
Welcome to the forum and the club! You know you're the second person from York to post this month about getting a Fiero? Both GT's and very nice! I'm right down 30 south of Gettysburg, let me know if you need anything. I'm out in York at HACC quite a bit.
Thanks for all the replies. She's going in for inspection on Thursday (requirement now that it's registered in my state). This was an Arizona car that was transported here.
I have a lot that I want to do, but I'm just hoping it can slip through the inspection without REQUIRING anything to pass. That way I can work on things in my own time. I have a few trips planned that I'd like to get through before I start tearing into the Fiero. Canada next week for work, and then Boston in 3 weeks for PAX East.
Failed emissions due to missing the EGR tube. So I'll need to source one from somewhere. Doesn't need to work to pass, just needs to visually be there.
Failed safety check because of a laundry list... Right front inner tie rod is shot (hence my above comments about steering feeling like it tie rods were messed up), and since I'll have to do an alignment after replacing the one that is shot, I may as well do both front inner and outer. Front tires need replaced. Right rear caliper is leaking brake fluid (I didn't notice this at all when I looked over the car) Front corner lights need amber bulbs (it has clear corner lenses, and the bulbs in them are also clear) Half of the lights in the tails don't work correctly... The guy that I bought it from had put in these crappy chinese ebay bulbs, and they are pieces of crap. They're too dim, and they don't really get any brighter when you hit the brakes while the driving lights are on. So I'll need to replace pretty much all of the bulbs on the car but the headlights. (see below for picture) Windshield washers aren't working (no idea why yet, had never tried to use them before)
So... I paid my 67 bucks to fail and drove it home and stuck it in the garage. Now to source some parts.
Can't go wrong with Fiero Store, I just prefer to buy suspension/mounts/cables from RD. Everything he sells is top-notch. Either way you can't go wrong. I do have a pair of calipers still attached to a spare cradle I have no use for, as well as the factory calipers on my Fiero that I will not use. I'll see if I can free them up and they're yours!
lol, the last bit of you video made me laugh. I am sorry about that but it was humorous. However I don't think its very difficult to replace the tumbler and re-key the car. I am sure others will have some advice on this though, I have not done this for a Fiero.
My old 86 F250 was like that. Loved it. (again, one less key to carry around) Consider it a modification like the modern push button cars. haha now you just need to add a keyless remote for your door locks and it will be truely KEYLESS!!
A new ignition cylinder and fresh key with it should serve you well. But in the meantime, lube the existing piece to persuade the tumblers to unstick. I would guess that graphite grease is the best, but you may want to loosen them with PB blaster first and blow it dry with compressed air and a rag to prevent the blowback from hitting the interior. Never saw one that bad!
Replaced inner tie rods, this fixed the vagueness in steering. Also noted that when I go over a bump, it no longer pulls to the side. I have not yet scheduled to do an alignment though. I did the typical "count how many times you turn the outer tie rod and do the same number in reverse when putting them back onto the new inner tie rods", but the rodney dickman ones are a slightly different length. So it's not quite right. So, currently my steering wheel is about a quarter turn off center to go straight, but the parts are at least on
EGR Tube installed (I left the plates on it, blocking the ports though). When I tried removing the block plates and throwing it on as intended, it ran like **** . So, left the plates to block the ports, and just bolted the tube over top of them. Took it back to the garage and now it has passed inspection, and I have a sticker for that.
Bought a right rear brake caliper from Rockauto, and threw it on and bled the brakes, no more leaking caliper, and good brake pressure.
Still need to pick up some front tires, but didn't want to do that until I get an alignment.
Found out that my back up switch is not working. Opened up the console, and the entire switch is missing. So, I'm going to be ordering one. Unfortunately, the backup switch on the fierostore for the 5 speed is 45 bucks + shipping. If I had a 4 speed, it'd only be 5 bucks.
Fixed the ignition lock cylinder with with some lubricant on the key, and raped the hell out of the ignition with it. It's still a little finicky, and will sometimes not lock out after I remove the key, but with a few taps of the key release switch, the tumblers do their thing and lock it out.
So... still not safety inspected, just need to order a backup switch and throw it in, and hopefully it works. Then front tires, and an alignment. Should then be good to go.
Once it's legally inspected, then I can start doing the fun and cosmetic things.
Also seem to have messed up the handle to open the door. I went to open the driver side door, and somehow the linkage popped in the handle, and now the left side of the handle is loose and can be pulled out. Right side of the handle is still connected and opens the door. Just another frustrating dumb thing that needs repaired. Seems to be the way of life with these cars Something is always broken.
Backup switch for the 5 speed is not under the console. The 86 has been wired for both manual transmissions. Your switch is on the trans.
Well, that would explain why I couldn't find it in the console. Time to see if I can find some pictures online so I can tell what I'm looking for. Currently, when I put it in reverse, my backup lights are not coming on. I tested the bulbs and they are good, so my assumption is that it's the switch is either not working, or not properly connected.
I spent a few minutes in the engine last night and found the switch. It is underneath the shifter cable linkage. After shifting the linkage out of the way, I could get to the switch. I spent a few minutes half-assedly trying to get it out, but didn't have much time. Pretty difficult to get any tools around it. What do you guys use to get this switch out? Didn't seem to have enough room to get a wrench to the nut, as the knuckles all over the tranny casing are quite in the way, and I couldn't get a good angle to get enough grip with pliers. New switch is ordered but not here yet, I was just trying to get the old one out so it's ready, and I wanted to test the switch to see if it is still functional in lighting the back-up lights (in case there is something buggy with the tab inside the tranny casing.
She's inspected! Just got it back after getting front alignment done after I had done the front inner tie rods. 2 new front tires.
Now I can drive her again. Legally!
However, I've already started breaking things, lol. I crushed the back section of the passenger side ground effects when my jack shifted (I had a poorly placed board on the top of the jack). So, now I need to find some passenger side ground effects Any idea where that can be found? Or, should I just keep watching Ebay, lol. I see Ebay has a driver side for sale, but I need the passenger side.