Whatever people say, it could be
really fun to do the mech part on your Duetto yourself. I'd
like to share my experiences.
Turn on some good music and have fun.
Here are some of my favorites from the good old' days.
- Jerry Lee Lewis - Whole lotta shakin'
- Buddy Holly - That'll be the day
- Del Shannon - Runaway
- Johnny and the Hurricanes - Buckeye
- Bobby Boris and the Kryptkickers - Monster Mash
- The Ventures - Walk, don't run
- Dion - Donna the Primadonna
- Big Bopper - Chantilly lace!
- Elvis, of course - Any day now!
- The Shadows - Apache
- Jerry Lee Lewis again - Roll over Beethoven!
Preferably enjoyed in your garage or
while driving to the hop. In the good old '60's, girls were
girls, cars had carburetors and nobody knew anything about
Well, time to do some work on your Alfa. Just click on the
item you wish to know more about and I'll gladly share my
thoughts and experience. My mechanical steps concern the
original Spider Veloce, but are also useful for other Alfas,
naturally. If you are a skilled mechanic, have a look anyway,
perhaps there are some good unknown tips even for you!
I made this engine stand years ago. However, I
haven't used it that many times because there is no need to
lift the engine out of the car to overhaul it. Most of the
jobs can in fact be carried out with the engine still in the
It is important to know
what you want to do and why. Sometimes the problem is not what
you think it is. I have learned this the hard way when my oil
pressure was a little too low on my Giulia Super. New bearings
all over but the pressure was still too low. (Censored
#&&##_&%_#). It was the indicator on the engine
block that was incorrect, not the bearings. Anyway, after this
operation in 1969 I am more careful.
n 1980! I made a complete
overhaul on my 1750 Round tail Spider incl. valves, piston
rings, bearings, carb rubbers etc. etc. and new cam chains.
The next summer, I only use my Spider in the summertime, a
most annoying razzling occurred sometimes.
I rechecked the valve
clearance, cam chain etc., the ignition, was correct. Still
that noise. Next summer, same thing and another rechecking and
adjusting. Still the same. To make a long story short, I used
the Round tail almost every summer but that #¤%¤#¤ engine
noise was still there. Alfa friends listened but nobody could
trace that razzling. In 1996 I made another complete overhaul
on my engine, new pistons, liners, bearings, valves (3 new),
new valve guides and seals and an electronic ignition system
(Marelli from a FIAT 132), new carb rubbers etc. The engine
did not sound like before, it was now running more quiet but
sometimes that #¤#% started at 2.500 - 3.000 revs.
Most distressing. Well,
the other day my Mrs. and I were driving on the "cruising
roads" here in the forest. We bought a map from the
Ducati MC-Club with good roads highlighted. Excellent idea. We
had been driving for three hours and that noise increased all
the time. #¤%¤#
Suddenly we came out from
the forest on a public road and I accelerated. Boom! It was
like something hit the engine like a machine gun. I stopped
instantly and turned the engine off. Then I saw the front
crankshaft pulley spinning in front of me like a Frisbee out
in the field. I opened the bonnet and found that the fan was
completely demolished but the radiator was OK, otherwise no
damages. My beloved wife found the pulley after 15 minutes
while I was phoning for assistance. One of my brother in laws
came with his Citroen XM and he towed us to the Alfa garage in
Lund, some 30 minutes drive.
He was driving very
carelessly, I think he wanted to make even for a dispute we
had some time ago. I bought a Siberian hamster for his son,
but my sister was furious when she found out it was an
ordinary rat. That evening I found the missing nut and locking
shim and the next day I reassembled the missing parts. And,
suddenly, like magic, the engine was running so smooth I
almost had to stand at the exhaust to hear it. All those 16
years, it was the locking late that was loose.
The nut had obviously
made one turn and caused the shim to vibrate. Wow, I probably
now have one of the most well tuned 1750 engines ever. Every
tolerance has been checked and re-checked every year (almost).
So, remember this, Alfisti. The problem might not turn out to
be what you think it is. Razzling noises might come from a
loose crankshaft pulley nut. I have learned this the hard way.
BTW, I have a log on the web where you may read all about my
1967 Round tail since 1972, when I bought her.
One thing although, don't
be afraid to temper with your Alfas, they like it, and it's
very fun too! For instance, taking the head off is a minor
operation. This is how I use to do it. A blown head gasket is
easy to replace, just follow my steps. Once, the head is
removed, take the opportunity to check the valves. If your
Alfa is consuming too much oil, the answer might be found
here. Talking about oil, if the valves and guides seem to be
OK, perhaps the piston rings need to be changed.
Again, no fuss, you can
easily do it with the engine in the bay. It is a minor
operation. I have done it several times, and it's even fun to
do it. With the pistons off, have a look at the liners since
they are quite easy to remove. The heating system and the
radiator are also easy to overhaul. The Webers are the heart
of your engine so adjust them carefully.