Sunday, November 29, 2015


With the Thanksgiving weekend here, I was hoping to actually get the instrument cluster back in the car but with traveling to my parents and helping the wife clean the house, just didn't get that far. The instrument cluster has been rewired and assembled though and all that is left is to rewire the power leads inside the car.



If I can get a warm evening or weekend, the interior wiring will be able to be completed and the instrument cluster can be installed and once this is completed, there is a little bid of interior work to do then think the focus will turn to eliminating the power headlights. There is an older Buick headlight assembly that will fit into the opening and then a Lexan cover is made to cover the opening and act as the lens. This will give the car a better look and eliminate the power headlight intermittent operation problem. 

Until next time,


Sunday, November 22, 2015

OH NO......SNOW!

There is always a day in spring when the weather breaks and work on the Fiero can be done outside but on the other side, a day in the fall when the car has to be  pulled back into the garage to continue; Today is the latter.


The instrument panel was assembled and some final tests were being done on the d-sub connector, that is being used, when the ends of the test leads touched each other, while checking voltage between pins. One of the pins was vaporized and the wiring connections under the center console were damaged. When the center console connections were uncovered, one side was badly blackened. Currently new wires are being run under part of the console that can not be accessed.

Another problem is that while the meters being used are the same size, they are made by different manufactures, meaning the shunt and voltage pins are different on each of them. When making up the d-sub connector for the external wires, care must be taken to connect the correct external wire to the correct wire going to the meter, as the plugs for the different meters look the same but the reading actually goes to different pins on the respective meters.





When reading other blogs, a great amount of respect is growing for these builders. One builder in particular is Fred Behning. He too is reworking his instrument panel  and with the level of complexity involved, completed it in record time. You can take a look at his work in his blog post: 

A Pinch of This, A Dash of That

After the Fiero was completed to take to EVCCON, it has been a little hard getting motivated to clean up some areas that don't satisfy me. My wife and had Chinese dinners the other night and the reading on the fortune cookie really struck home.


My posts will probably slow down through the winter but work will continue, so until next time, thanks for following my blog!


Sunday, November 8, 2015


The other day when the meter leads shorted between the pack battery pins on the d-sub connector, I thought it just damaged the connector but when I went out to work on it today, found that there was no voltage on the wires. After taking part of the center console apart, I could see a wire had come off of the console connector. The easiest way to repair it is to just pull some new wires through the center console and reconnect them to the wires going to the meters.

Sometimes I think I have all the bad luck but this morning when checking the EVTV Page for a new show, found that Jack had a battery fire on Saturday in a Better Place Pack. Seems it ran down too low and when he charged it back up, went ballistic! So when things are not going good on my Fiero build, it is always good to reflect and realize it could be worse. I do have Better Place cells, so will need to make sure they do not run down or overcharge.


Until next week,


Saturday, November 7, 2015


When the duel volt/amp meters were first installed in the Fiero, I burnt up the DC-DC converters several times and the same with the meters. This time was no different, as I have ordered more DC-DC converters twice but have not had any issues with the meters. I have never been diagnosed but have all of the symptoms of dyslexia! I look at a schematic and then wire the components backwards sometimes, so have gotten in the habit of checking things two or three times before finally soldering or assembling a circuit. I was finally able to assemble the d-sub connector with the 12 volt power and get the meters to light up. A d-sub connector pin crimper was purchased and is working well. If all of the pins are connected to the wires first, then it is easier for me to make sure they are all inserted in the correct positions in the connector housing. The latest connector has just one wire going to the d-sub pin and the two wires were left long enough to be inserted in both of the MTA-100 connector assemblies.



Tomorrow the d-sub that I burnt up while trying to read voltage across the pins will be replaced and I am going to use the crimped pins to assemble it. This time, I am going to put electrical tape on each pin after it is crimped to the wire to make sure they do not touch each other. I still need to take voltage readings to make sure to insert the pins into the d-sub connector housing properly but will take proper precautions this time. I really hate having pack voltage coming into the interior of the car but it would need to use either a resister or a circuit to proportionally reduce the voltage going to the meters to avoid it.

Hopefully another post tomorrow,