'87 pontiac firefly


Well-known member
this is what i have been tinkering with, over the last 2 ~ 3 years


re-covered the door panels
and installed interior lighting- as well as contact switches on the pass door and trunk lid


and made new rear inner trim panels- the oem plastic was so sun-baked and brittle


lots of other stuff that has been done, but not seen-new rear shocks, new whiteline bushings up front, new timing belt, water pump, cam &crank seals , plugs/cap/wires
the whole interior has sound- deadening material added, in the doors and rear cavities, self stick panels and spray.
the carpet was washed really good, but the seats are pretty much no good from being sun baked- just have crappy seat covers on them for now...
new hatch shocks , from gm classic parts....
previous owner installed oil pressure and volt meter gauges just below the ashtray, bottom edge of the dash.
replaced many of the crappy bulbs and went with led bulbs wherever i can.

That's a lot of work which went into your Firefly. Nice big battery, does it really need that?

Ceep on driving!
i use optima yellow top batteries in every vehicle i own- they have never let me down. i usually have big stereos and many auxiliary lights on each vehicle as well. i have lots of wild animals on the road i travel every day, and its usually dark when i leave for work-so i light up the road.
lots of reserve capacity with the yellow top , if the alt fails i can drive for a few hours, if need be...

'' i would rather have it, and not need it, than need it, and not have it ''
You probably live more remote than I do.
Here there is only a chance to hit some ducks ;-)
cleaned &lubed the rh side caliper slides- the temp gun said the pass side was 20 degrees hotter than the drivers side!!! :-o

installed led bulbs into the aftermarket oil and volt gauges. changed the engine oil &filter. still wont idle on its own. will take it out for a good highway higher speed run.
muffler is from a land rover, if its too loud i will install a oem suzuki style muffler.
ordered front and rear brake pads / shoes...
ordered more led bulbs, for the tail lamps, high mount 3rd brake light, and front marker / signal lamps. also a roll of 1%vlt window tint for the rear hatch glass- the dark tint i used on the side windows is supposed to be 2.5 % vlt, but it looks purple colored when you look thru it....not limo black like it used to be.
might put a strip across the top of the windshield- i do that to all my vehicles when i get the windshield replaced- between 3 too 5 inches down from the top, just low enough to match the sun visor when they are flipped down. i find that strip along the top makes all the difference when driving into the sun.
however, the police dont like a strip along the BOTTOM of the windshield....i had one of my cars done with a 4 or 5 inch strip on the bottom (just enough so you couldnt see the wiper blades) and the police officer pulled me over and had a madness fit over the strip of tint along the lower edge of the glass....yet he didnt seem to care that
1) i was speeding
2) i did not have my drivers license on me
3)did not have insurance or registration in the car- but it was registered and insured
4)my side windows are tinted

all he cared about was the 4 inch wide strip of tint, along the bottom of the windshield. he did a wheel spinning u turn , in busy traffic, on a single lane highway, in a snowstorm, chasing me down with lights and sirens.....what a dumbass
new brakes arrived yesterday- man rock auto is quick! my local parts places are usually a week out to get parts..or they just cant get the parts i need...
It's disappointing to have to ship our money to another country, but there is little to nothing left in Canada that I didn't already buy.
fireflyse said:
It's disappointing to have to ship our money to another country, but there is little to nothing left in Canada that I didn't already buy.
thats funny you should say that. the front pads are made in....CANADA....and then shipped to the usa....then bought by a Canadian, and shipped back to-CANADA...
wow these brake pads already have some serious miles on them, and they havent even been installed onto a car yet :laugh:

the rear shoes are brand new, not re-lined, and made in....usa...
the shipping cost more than the pads and shoes, combined...
both are Raybestos brand.
installed new front pads- the rear shoes were almost new that are on the car- so i will mark and add these mk1 brakes shoes to my collection of new parts.
may have to take the pass side caliper apart and clean it as well- it was 20 * c hotter than the drivers side- must be hanging up a little. that was after a 4 km drive...so yeah, may have to open up the pass side caliper, and polish the piston cup.
the rears are the same temp, after removing, cleaning and lubing the slide areas for the shoes. they turn rather freely, lock up good, release very well. had to free up a stuck slave cylinder on the pass rear....only one side moved in and out with the brake pedal-

so i worked the cups back and forth, while the wife slowly pressed the brake pedal- got it to easily move back and forth on its own. there was some rust and corrosion just under the edge of the boot that goes around the cup /piston in the slave cylinder.
i have new slave cylinders, but i didnt want to take the chance and break / damage the oem brake lines....so after it was free moving, i installed the shoes and drums, and bleed that brake. the rears work great now. ;-)

need it out of the shop, for now... i have to clean out the one corner, for the atv's and their snowblades. winter is coming.... :-(
2 weeks ago, this car went inside. threw a battery in it, pumped the gas a few times, and it fired right up- maybe the carb, sitting with fresh gas and fuel stabilizer and other additives did the trick, and i wont have to remove and clean the carb. :p

removed the rh front caliper, for cleaning- it is sticking and running hot. compressed air to push out the piston cup, then carefully remove the clip and the seals, so they can be cleaned and re-used-
the bare caliper was thrown in the heated ultrasonic parts cleaner- cleaned up really nice, has 2 rough spots inside, as well as rust where the seal and clip go into their groove-
my son polished the cup , then the bore-wow they look like new-my son has medical condition that makes him pay very close attention to detail- and if you need a part cleaned, it will be his mission to clean it. he rather enjoys it, and i like including him on the car repairs. that is one of the ways that the wife and i have found his strengths and keeps him out of trouble (for the most part)- he is an adult and can still make his own choices, but rather poorly-

i may remove the other caliper, and let him polish that one as well!!!

didnt get around to the window tint, yet.
Nice :)
That you can include your family in to working on your cars.
Much be some valued family time.

polished caliper piston cup


not that bad of a tint job, this one had more of a compound curve at the top than the bottom-so had a harder time getting the puckers out of the tint so it would lay flat.
caliper is back on, tire rotates alot easier now thanks to the caliper being polished internally- :laugh:
one back drum was sticky- a whack with a hammer on the drum and it now rotates freely :p
wife cut up some blue house carpet, for the rear hatch area- the oem fabric is in really poor shape, missing a lot of its blue color, has holes and paint stains on it- its not oem, but looks much better.
need to cut out the tint, where the 3rd brake light mounts-that way its nice and bright. i might have an red led strobe bulb to fit the 3rd brake light- ;-)

its a balmy -21c righ now-🥶 time to finish breakfast, light the furnace in the shop and finish my coffee-

i cant wait for summer to get here , so i can drive this car-i dont want to do a shake-down run when its so cold out.
i didnt cut the tint out around the 3rd brake light-i found a really bright led bulb to fit in there.

wife installed the carpet with black christmas tree push in fasteners holding it in place-

i still may change the muffler- i dont like the tractor muffler (actually a land-rover muffler) that the previous owner installed- it sounds like a fart can honda :sick:
i have to strip the headliner out, and the heater box- mice got in there and it stinks. dammit! and it has a perfect headliner.....
after a few drives with premium and seafoam dumped in the fuel tank, the car will stay running ! i may not have to re-build the carb- even tho the carb kit arrived the day before it started running properly- maybe it was scared of being taken apart, and started running properly? ha ha
brought the '87 back in the shop. removed seats, seat belts- wife proceeded to cut the headliner and vacuum out the insulation and mouse debris / damage-then threw the headliner in the garbage. majority of stink from the headliner, and some stink from the carpet- may buy new carpet.
will remove the heater box and try to put some fine mesh screen over the cowl fresh air opening, stop the mice from getting into the hvac system-

trying to find an oem style muffler. i removed the land-rover muffler and the 4 muffler clamps holding it in place-
Rock auto doesnt list a muffler anymore, but the walker # is 18394 ....someone must have found a decent replacement by now....

car at least starts and stays running on its own.