A Letter From Our Member Lothar Bacher
You have not heard from me and have not seen me at all this past year! Well, there were several reasons for this. I have been spending a lot of time with my business and I also have not had a running Fiero to drive for quite some time. My Fiero is still under construction, raised up four feet in the air on jack stands while I am installing my Northstar V-8 engine.
Working only part time on this project, the installation is coming along slow, but sure. I bought the engine and conversion kit from Gary Zumalt and it took him six months to mount it on a Fiero engine cradle. I have since stripped off everything I do not need like the power steering, cruise control, and air conditioning. I had a new wiring harness designed to retrofit the 1995 computer system on my 1997 engine. I also had to change a few controls like the throttle body. I needed to enlarge the engine compartment in which I cut out the lower part of the trunk for better clearance and more open space. I have added a larger radiator for better cooling as well.
To make things even more complicated, I am changing my Fiero from a manual transmission to an automatic transmission. As a result, a new shift linkage had to be designed. My new transmission oil cooler just arrived to help make things run cooler; an engine oil cooler has been included in my modification plans as well. The gas tank has been modified for better fuel delivery with the addition of an external fuel pump. I am still waiting for my new, modified drive axles which I hope to have soon.
Everybody who has stopped by during my modification project has asked the same question - will all of this equipment fit into my Fiero? My response has been, ‘yes it will’, but do not ask how! My local Cadillac Dealer said it would never work and has offered to check out the engine for me after it is running, which, when this time comes, will prove to him the versatility of our mighty Fiero.
There is so much more involved with this project than you can think of. My list of modifications goes on and on. For example, a local manufacturer of catalytic converters has modified a new unit for me with out extra charge; they have added a three inch inlet and 2 two inch outlets. My list of people to thank for help in this project goes on and on as well. I have suppliers for my business in Michigan, I have contacted some people at Oldsmobile, Elmer Schild has supplied me with parts and advice, and many more…
This year, I plan to have this project complete. You can bet that once I am finished, I will be ready to show it off to the Fiero world. Looking forward to seeing you again soon.
(Harry, use pictures with this article)