page 5 of the V8 Fiero project
My V8 Fiero project has taken a fairly major turn. The original project was to transplant a Chevy V8 into a 1985 Fiero; the progress on that car was going well. Then I happened across this Fiero for sale. Well, actually a friend of mine happened to find it and told me about it.
This will now take the place of the 1985 Fiero. This is a 1984 Fiero with a Ferrari Dino 246GT body on it. It currently has a stock Fiero 4 cyl engine in it (that doesn't run), but this will soon be corrected. The V8 that was being prepared for the previous car will now be put into this one. All of the previous work on the engine mounts is not lost, since that cradle will now be fitted into this car; engine, tranny, and all.
The car has a good frame and a good interior (stock Fiero). The body needs work. It is generally not too bad, but almost every panel needs some repair; minor damage, edges chipped, things like that. It is a fairly accurate copy of a Dino, with the exception of the windows and the roof. There is not much you can do about that when you are basing it on a Fiero. I happen to think the Dino is one of those timeless car designs and is rarer than the usual Fiero/Ferrari 308 rebody.
The car was not running when I bought it, but it is now. It needed a fuel pump and a fuel injector. It has throttle body fuel injection, so there is only one injector. Fortunately I was able to get these parts off a friend (same one who found this car for me) who is doing a 3.8SC swap into a 4cyl Fiero, so the price was very reasonable (ie, I'll trade him some of my parts that I don't need).
The front brake calipers were seized, so they have been replaced. I decided to replace all 4 calipers and the master cylinder and flush the old brake fluid out. The pedal is a little spongy, so there is still some air in the system. I'll worry about that later and get on with the engine swap now.
The white Fiero that was going to get the V8 is being taken apart and the various parts will be sold. The main frame was cut up and taken to a scrap yard; made $40 on it! The weld repair ended up being a waste of time, but it was good welding practice for me.
Yes, the body is sitting too high so it will be lowered by either cutting down the springs or putting in adjustable coilover suspension.
Oh, as for what I named this car......Dino.....Fiero......Dinero!
Everything disconnected, and car up in the air to drop the engine out. With the engine, transmission, exhaust, and rear suspension all sitting on the ground, the back of the car doesn't weigh much at this stage, so I lift it using the trunk latch. Seems I've been here before.
OK, it's all out now. I'm running out of dollies and stands to put things on. This engine unit is on a wheeled dolly, and the V8 is on another one I just made. You can see the transmission on a stand beside the car that is going to hook up to the V8 (a 4T65E-HD). Oh, the original tranny I was fitting to the V8 was a 4T65E. The one that I'm going to use now is the heavy duty (HD) version of the same tranny. It is pretty much identical from the outside, but has a stronger final stage gear set.
This is the stock 1984 Fiero 4 cylinder engine. The wiring and some other features are different on 1984 engines compared with later years. This one has a neat dual outlet exhaust system that someone made. It looks like it was made from galvanized fence pipe since it is really thick and has virtually no rust on the outside. The unit on the right side is the A/C compressor that will be taken off and put on the V8 since this car had A/C (the white '85 didn't).
This is looking at the passenger side of the engine compartment, at the front. This is the battery tray. I'm not going to put the battery here (probably going to go in the trunk) and this is a little close to the engine, so I'm taking it out. I've drilled out the spot welds. The tray actually looks very good. What looks like rust is just dried battery acid that hasn't corroded the tray yet.
This is the wiring harness off the 4 cylinder engine. It is a fair bit of work to take it all off since it winds all over the engine. I've labeled all of the connection points, but I will end up cutting a lot of the harness out since it is for a fuel injected engine and I'm using a carburetor.
The V8 installed. I cut a small notch in the frame to clear the crank pulley. The engine looks smaller in there than the fuel injected 4 cylinder looked. This is of course the first of many test fittings, but it looks good. The 1984 Fiero seems better suited for the V8 swap than the '85. The fuel lines are over on the drivers side and don't get in the way. The heater hoses had to be moved over to the centre area to clear the header and alternator.
This is the frame notch. I cut it to a rough size to get the engine in. Once it was in, I marked the exact size it had to be and took the engine back out. Then I welded some metal in to strengthen the cut area. The metal I've welded in is thicker than the original frame metal, so it should be good.
The engine has been in and out a few times now to check for various fits and clearances. I've installed the alternator and A/C compressor to see how they fit. There isn't a lot of belt wrap around the compressor pulley, but it is supposed to work OK. I can always put in a small idler if I need it, to pull the belt up between the compressor and the main crank pulley. The "back" on the motor mount is a note to myself to grind off some material off the backside of the mount bracket to clear a weld under it.
This is what a 4T65E-HD transmission looks like with the end cover removed. I removed it to replace the pressure control solenoid (PCS), since they tend to go bad; better to replace it now while it is easy to get at (it is on the right side about half way up). I also installed a shift-kit, which is basically some springs and spacers that go in the accumulator pistons to firm up the shifts a little and reduce wear on the clutch disks.