First Post.... I have wanted to post this for a while now but have not taken the time. Thanks to this bug floating around I have plenty of spare time.
My boy worked for nearly 2 years cutting grass and saving as best a kid can to come up with half of the scratch needed to purchase his 1988 Fiero GT in the summer of 2019. It had a few issues. Bald/dry rotted tires. Almost no breaks at all. Terrible engine vibration due to only half the cylinders firing, Fluttering popup headlights, rotted out speakers, decaying paint with tons of nicks, scratches, cracks, fading.....loose driver side mirror with a dent in it, leaking sun roof, Windshield washer that just sprayed in the front compartment, cracked dry rotted outer dew wipes, cracked rear sail panels, screaming belts, no AC, leaking vacuum lines, and crazy rough shifting with the RPMs running through the roof then it slamming into gear.
I did my best to talk him out of this car and promised it would be a LOT of hot days in the sun to get her going again but he insisted it was the car for him It was a scary drive home.....
It is worth noting that he goes to a school where most of the kids parents just buy them a brand new Jeep or Mustang...the unlucky ones just get daddys old Benz. Given this his choice kinda suprised me and it also put me under the gun to help him make it look as nice as possible on a budget....after we got the darn thing running and stopping.
The pictures are slightly out of order because there were so many but I love a visual aid.
I used these forums, the ogers cave, Ronald Finger, and LostNotForgotton's videos to help identify and fix all of these issues. I know Ronald's is a iron duke but the dude gave me hope. I could not have done this without yalls help.
My son picked TeckWraps High Gloss white vinyl. 1.52m x 15m (59.8" x 590.6", 4.98ft x 49.2ft, 1.66yd x 16.4yd) at $337 shipped. This was enough to make some mistakes and still have some left over.
A month of all my spare weekend time later.... Finally Finished....
Thanks again to all the contributors in the fiero community.
This is him at the DMV waiting for his driving test. He insisted on driving his own car. He told me the instructor asked him questions about the car during the entire test.
[This message has been edited by Forrest (edited 03-18-2020).]
Great story and post....and car! Nice to see a young man taking on a "Project car"....Biggest mistake is to hand your kids everything. Most kids nowadays can't change a flat, let alone do proper maintenance on their car.
As far as new and expensive cars vs older-simple-cheap cars....I personally like the simple older cars that are A) Easy to work on, and B) Durable....I admit to lusting after the forged aluminum A-Arms on the C4 Vette back in the 80s-90s...But came to the realization that simple stamped steel A-arms are more durable and very in-expensive...They offer 80-90% of the performance for 1/10 the cost...
Great job on the wrap. Looks like a late model car. The only reservation that I would have about owning a 30+ yr old car as a first daily driver vehicle would be that it will need TLC and probably a higher level of maintenance than with a newer vehicle.
------------------ " THE BLACK PARALYZER" -87GT 3800SC Series III engine, custom ZZP /Frozen Boost Intercooler setup, 3.4" Pulley, Northstar TB, LS1 MAF, 3" Spintech/Hedman Exhaust, P-log Manifold, Autolite 104's, MSD wires, Custom CAI, 4T65eHD w. custom axles, Champion Radiator, S10 Brake Booster, HP Tuners VCM Suite. "THE COLUSSUS" 87GT - ALL OUT 3.4L Turbocharged engine, Garrett Hybrid Turbo, MSD ign., modified TH125H " ON THE LOOSE WITHOUT THE JUICE "
The car looks great! How long did the wrapping take? i assume that you fixed the mechanical problems? thanks for the post jon
Yeah we got most all of it sorted out. I have a new compressor ready to go in for the A/C just waiting on the new pressure sensors. I recently installed keyless entry for him but will need a 12v relay to make the trunk pop work. Guess Ill be wiring up a new stereo soon as well cuz yesterday the tailight fuse popped which caused the radio to malfunction and the headlights to not go down. Replacing the fuse sorted the lights but the radio has no sound now and lights up all weird (All possible things lit up) when I turn on the headlights.
The wrap took about a month of my spare time on weekends. For someone that knows what they are doing it would take less time, but I was learning as I went and mistakes waste time. You could cut that time in half with a good helper.
My first car was a Fiero. That was only a few years ago, I still have that Fiero and have since gotten two others. When I first bought my Fiero, I knew nothing about working on cars(didn’t even know how to change a tire), but had liked it for the headlights. I’ve since moved on to rebuilding an engine and know much more than I used to. No one at my high school knew what it was, and even driving the Fieros around now people always turn their heads. Your son picked the right car!
I would like to know more about your wrapping process. Where did you obtain your supplies? How did you learn about wrapping? How do you go about cutting and fitting the pieces? Costs vs paint?
I think wrapping is a good idea for a daily or track car. Lots of options, and maybe more cost effective/easier to repair when needed?
My son picked TeckWraps High Gloss white vinyl. 1.52m x 15m (59.8" x 590.6", 4.98ft x 49.2ft, 1.66yd x 16.4yd) https://teckwrap.com/ at $337 shipped. This was enough to make some mistakes and still have some left over.
How to wrap....out of all the folks I watched on youtube I learned the most from Christian, aka ck wraps https://www.youtube.com/user/MrSpyderGT Using knifeless tape How to do corners When to use overlays vs stretching How to avoid peelback are key in being successful.
This was my first project wrapping. Like any paint job I had to work my way around the car...slap some bondo in/sand rough spots. Blemishes will show through the wrap just like paint. I just took it one panel at a time. The relativly flat design helped a ton and made the job less intimidating. The front and rear bumpers were a challenge but I got through it with some prayer ;-)
Repair is as easy as putting it on in the first place. Heat up and peel off the old stuff...stick a new piece. It is very tedious work. Paint is quicker for sure but I was quoted $1500 to paint the car. With this total cost was around $360 tools and all....and I could do it in my garage. He got a couple nicks in it while removing the old rear glass in favor of new ones so we just pulled that piece and slapped on a new one.
After tires, brakes, ignition system, etc etc that went into the car to get her running again...I was looking to save a few bucks if I could.
[This message has been edited by Forrest (edited 05-04-2020).]
Follow-up We just sent him to college a bit ago. I just wanted to share that he wanted his Fiero in his Sr Pictures. This little car has given us some adventures here and there but he still has a LOVE for it. Me too actually. Dont worry...he was not leaning on the spoiler. He told me "Dad I had my butt on the taillights and had 0 pressure on the spoiler but the photo guy wanted me to pose like that"...I made him ALWAYS close the rear lid from below the spoiler. A lot of literal blood sweat and tears went into this car....it was worth it! Given the crap year he got as a Sr year under the fear of this bug (I am covid recovered), the hurricanes (We live in Houston) and all other natural and or manmade disasters( MLB Went Woke :-(, uh....covid? )....I am so grateful to God that he gave us this distraction.
[This message has been edited by Forrest (edited 09-02-2021).]