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Thread: Stetched vs. Non-stretched

  1. #1

    Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    I'd like to get some opinions on fiero stretching vs. a non-stretched car for use on a 355 spyder kit.

    Just wondering how people feel about this. Pros and cons of each would be great..

    Thanks

    Miami

  2. #2
    Senior Member 360SPYDER's Avatar
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    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    Stretched is the way to go. The car will look more authentic (depends which kit you are using as well). I've seen some non stretched 355's that look good as well. Have somebody who knows what they are doing stretch the car.

  3. #3

    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    Well this would make a great Poll!! I say non-stretch. DKOV has always had the best rational for this. let me find one of his many quotes.....
    The Needles Dance, The Gauges Glow,
    As Engine Speed & Heartbeat Grow,
    Gears They Shift 'Neath Anxious Thumbs,
    SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES...
    Formerly: Powerhouse

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  4. #4

    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    I found it!!! I hope you don't mid DKOV but I put a few refrences to the AD355 in with it:

    Quote Originally Posted by DKOV
    The Warlock/IFG kit as I remember was the first 355 kit to appear in Kitcar about 5 years ago. Within a year of that feature article the companies were persuaded by the Ferrari legal staff to cease all production.

    The Warlock kit had a few design flaws in areas of symmetry, line, and contour. Most kits sold since then by other makers appear to be molded copies of that first design with its inherent features. Others, like Mirage & b.spyder, came out with cleaner, more perfected designs over a SWB(short wheelbase).

    Although most kits are designed for a 3" stretch for a more authentic look, the stock Fiero wheelbase approach does has a few trade-offs. As far as appearance goes, some say you don't notice the difference, but others say it appears too "stubby". How you view it may depend on how authentic of a look you're trying to achieve.

    A "few design flaws" you say...

    Althought he IFG splash kits are nice and are adequate for what we all are trying to do, there are some significant flaws that need adressing when building an IFG splash. The least of which is the fact that the body is wider on one side than the other!

    Spend the time to tear down, cut up, reassemble parts in the correct panels, glass them together and roll the edges, build a new mounting system, slice the car up the center line and balance the left and right sides, re-align the top for the correct angle THEN pay for the chassis to be cut, stretched and reinforced...

    You should just buy the Mirage or AD355 !

    INSERT STRETCH ARGUMENT HERE...

    Yes, I know. The 355s wheel base is 2.3 inches longer. True, it is. The overall car is loner too. The problem with the stretch and being able to quote numbers is that the stretchis in the WRONG place!

    For convinence sake, the Fiero is cut at the fire wall and the rear subframe is pushed back. However, on a 355, the extra length is in FRONT of the doors. A subtle difference to be sure, but it describes why you can see the "kitness" of an IFG straight off the bat while it takes quite a bit more scrutiny to expose a Mirage or AD355.

    I get asked all the time how the Mirage can look so acurate while NOT being stretched.

    First off, it's wider than the IFG splashes and retains the correct "slant" to the widening rather than the "coke bottle" approach used on the IFG.

    Secondly, the roof line has the correct slope over the rear glass. This is done by NOT stretching the rear end of the car.

    Thirdly, and possibly the most significant, the Mirage and AD355 is a first generation copy (directly from a 355) as opposed to IFG splashes that are copies of copies of copies.

    Fourth, just plain attention to details. The angles and openings are just great. The mounting locations are very helpful. The fact that ALL the panels are SEPARATE as on the original makes for a much cleaner finished product. You all remember my rocker panel rant? DOORS and ROCKERS should be SEPARATE!!!

    Bottom line is the Mirage is much more convincing and accurate despite the shorter wheel base. Why, because the demensional proportions are maintained. AD355's are molded from OEM parts.

    Consider what you will need to spend on the stretch and other steps to bring the IFG splash up to standards and you'll SAVE money with a Mirage or AD355 and it just may look better

    The Needles Dance, The Gauges Glow,
    As Engine Speed & Heartbeat Grow,
    Gears They Shift 'Neath Anxious Thumbs,
    SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES...
    Formerly: Powerhouse

    www.facebook.com/TheCalgaryBatman

  5. #5
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    Here is the scoop!

    I have owned both. My first was a non stretch Mirage and it was pretty. The length of the car is the same as the real 355 but the wheel well was ahead 3 inches and the rocker shortened. To adjust to the Fiero doors 2 inches in height were added to the scoop area and front bumper to make it look better I guess. I hit every speed bump in Tampa with the nose and rockers on that car. The width of the car is the same as the OEM 355.

    Here is why I decided to go to the Air Dynamics parts. First of all they are right on the money with real 355 parts. You can actually swap out bumpers and rear tail light valances if you wish. The hood has a real scoop in it that bolts on like the real 355 and could be used as a replacement part. The roof on the coupe is 3.5 inches longer than the Mirage and makes the car look correct with regard to the roof line. You can use plexi-glass like a Mirage of real 355 1/4 windows. The AD kit uses a real glass for the rear window, but if you would like one like the Mirage you have the option to do so. The scoop on the doors on the AD kits come in two designs. One is with the scoop (correct size) is attached to the door and is made as part of the door. One member said it took him all of 5 minutes to install his doors. The other version is in two parts. AD upper and a lower part that AD made for replacements parts on Ferrari race cars that can be used with slight modifications on the Fiero door.

    Whew! As far as the stretch, you do not have to cut the frame apart on a Fiero to make the wheelbase 2 7/8 inches longer (if your looking for precise figures). You do the work on the cradle by moving the rear mounts forward and add 3 inches to the front legs of the cradle. Limited amount of work and expense. There is plenty of room in the car for a V8 after doing the work on the cradle. You can even change the plugs better on the forward side of the engine.

    For my money The stretch car looks better and rides better when done properly. I went a step further on the Fiero doors as well by sectioning out 2 inches to have an accurate looking and functioning door of the proper height just to get over speed bumps.

    Dave

    If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

  6. #6

    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    Dave,

    I think your solution is the best however when it comes to the stretch most builders think of it as cutting the frame. Relocating the engine cradle I think Is a much Safer way of doing it compared to cutting the chassis.
    The Needles Dance, The Gauges Glow,
    As Engine Speed & Heartbeat Grow,
    Gears They Shift 'Neath Anxious Thumbs,
    SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES...
    Formerly: Powerhouse

    www.facebook.com/TheCalgaryBatman

  7. #7
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    The process is so easy to do, I wonder why more people don't think out of the box a little to make it happen.

    If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

  8. #8

    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    Whatever it takes to duplicate the look of the origional car!

  9. #9
    Moderator FunnyWheels's Avatar
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    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    What I like most about the modification is the car tracks and aligned perfectly. Too bad it will only work on the 355.
    If you're not confused, you're not paying attention.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Re:Stetched vs. Non-stretched

    Dave,
    Going down the path of the craddle stretch does seem easier than the frame stretch such as I did on my fiero. Once I sell my kit and my 87 Vette I am planning on buying a AD355 spyder kit and doing a stretch once again. My question is about the storage area (trunk) on the fiero, did you have to move that back as well or did you just remove it completly?


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