1900 : clean engine & connecting rod nut - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 12:31 AM Thread Starter
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1900 : clean engine & connecting rod nut

Hello,

On the 1900 cast iron engine, we tried several methods to clean inside. But without really good results.
So how to clean inside engine, which often has rust ?

The problem is not to clog up (or damage) the oil ducts, that remain inaccessible.

and I am looking for a connecting rod nut for Alfa 1900 (see picture).

Thank you !
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 04:45 PM
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Hi ALL,

the best cleaning for the engine ironcast is an ultra soon cleaning


rgds Franco
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 04:58 PM
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As many iron block engines of all types were and are built in the USA, most big machine ships have a high temperature caustic soda washing machine, somewhat like a dish washer that is used to clean these blocks to appear as new.
As mentioned above, the same type shops have large ultra sonic cleaning machines that will clean oil galleries and other passages.


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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pescara View Post
Hello,

On the 1900 cast iron engine, we tried several methods to clean inside. But without really good results.
So how to clean inside engine, which often has rust ?

The problem is not to clog up (or damage) the oil ducts, that remain inaccessible.

and I am looking for a connecting rod nut for Alfa 1900 (see picture).

Thank you !
Electrolysis tank. Non-destructive, takes it right back to clean gray iron. copy and paste link below.... good luck


Electrolysis Cleaning Method
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 05:20 PM
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Cleaning blocks

Caustic c;leaners like Zep Industrial cleaner or it`s more diluted cousin Castrol purple cleaner, and even Spray on oven cleaner does a good job on removing oil crud from blocks (iron & aluminum) after cleaning I use Alumabright to brighten aluminum surfaces. It is nothing but diluted Sulfuric acid. The same product will also remove rust. However it will have the iron so clean it will start to oxidize as it drys.
To prevent that while washing it off for the final time dribble some diesel fuel in the high pressure stream. Then you can blow off the excess and spray with WD40.

If you plan to paint the block don`t grease it up but be prepared to blow off the water and spray the outside of the block quickly.

Richard Jemison
RJR Racing

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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 02-28-2017, 06:03 PM
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I understand from some other 102 owners that caustic cleaning tanks can remove the aluminum plugs in the cast iron block. American iron seems to use mainly pressed-in, steel coolant plugs. The 1900 in this thread almost certainly uses the same aluminum plugs as the 102/2000.

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 01:44 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you, but what I must understand and choose ?

1) High temperature caustic + ultra sonic

2) Electrolysis cleaning

The aluminium plugs are easy avilable ?

Thank for your help again.

Franco, you don't have a conecting rod nut on the shelve ?
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 06:27 AM
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I would avoid caustic cleaning.

Don P
Carson City, NV

Past Alfas...
59 102 Touring (first Alfa $500 running)
65 Sprint GT (2nd Alfa, $500 daily driver)
102 Sprint (never did anything with it, but wish I had)
74 Berlina (first new car - now certainly rusted into oblivion)
61 Giulietta Spider G-Prod Race Car (where is it now?)
84 Spider Veloce (rarely drove it, so sold it)
86 Quadrifoglio (Dull car - no more 115s for me)
1971 Montreal "The Full Monty". Fair winds and following seas

Current Alfas
59 102 Touring Roadster - restoration complete, enough Alfa for any rational man. Or irrational, for that matter
And past...
Two 1946 Stampe SV4C (c/n 294 "Rocinante" - wife's favorite airplane. RIP), and c/n 235 "La Bon Temps Femme" (gone to a new home, but never forgotten)
Zlin 50LA (+9 -6 gees, titanium spar, 1200 lbs, 260HP rumored to now be in Brazil)
1946 Luscombe 8A
Starduster Too (recently spotted at the Nevada City, CA airport - over 20 years and an entire continent separating it from our stewardship in Binghamton, NY)
1955 Cessna 170B (wife taught me to fly tailwheel in this)

And present...
64 Mooney M20E ("Rambo". My faithful steed for over 30 years) Nearly 50 years old, and just returned from a trip to Argentina in him
Newest in the fleet
1967 Piper Super Cub on Wipline amphibious floats (a true "all terrain vehicle")
2010 Triumph Thunderbird


You can snap roll an Alfa only one time...
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 06:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pescara View Post
Thank you, but what I must understand and choose ?

1) High temperature caustic + ultra sonic

2) Electrolysis cleaning

The aluminium plugs are easy avilable ?

Thank for your help again.

Franco, you don't have a conecting rod nut on the shelve ?
Actually done see attached photo, you can final clean oil passages (which will be down to gray metal) but in case any flaking occurred in jacket,with a pressure washer followed by compressed air and oil bath....
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Last edited by Tom Frasca; 03-01-2017 at 07:01 AM.
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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 06:37 AM
Richard Jemison
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Caustic cleaners

From experience, caustic cleaners (basics) like Zep ans Castrol are not damaging to aluminum. Acids however will. The diluted sulfuric acid (as in Alumabright) as diluted only removes the surface discoloration and is only there for minutes before high pressuring it off. (typically several applications followed by water blasting.

As with most things you need to pay attention to your project and watch the result.

This stuff does an exceptional job of cleaning.

Richard Jemison
RJR Racing

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Last edited by Alfar7; 03-09-2017 at 06:51 AM.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-01-2017, 08:37 AM
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The caustic cleaners used in engine washing machines is not in contact long enough to do much corrosion to aluminum plugs and the like. It runs very hot water (steam) for about 25-30 minutes. Then rinses with plain very hot (LOTS of steam) water. When the iron block / head / whatever comes out, you need gloves to handle it, and it dries almost instantly with no corrosives trapped in galleries. The parts dry so quickly as to be rust free, unless they sit around for awhile. This is a commercial cleaning machine for this purpose.
OTHERWISE, Richard's solutions are also very effective.
Do NOT soak vintage blocks in caustic hot tanks! This will and does erode dissimilar metals as Dpeterson3 discusses.
The above is from my experience with the engine washing machine at only ONE shop, Motorkraft Ltd, in Noblesville, Indiana.


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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 06:11 AM
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Cast Iron block

Quote:
Originally Posted by pescara View Post
Thank you, but what I must understand and choose ?

1) High temperature caustic + ultra sonic

2) Electrolysis cleaning

The aluminium plugs are easy avilable ?

Thank for your help again.

Franco, you don't have a conecting rod nut on the shelve ?
so what did you decide...???
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 07:59 AM
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Engine cleaning

When I had my 2600 spider engine rebuilt, I went to a very experienced alfa romeo engine in the UK . He has built alfa engines for racing for more than 40 years .

I supplied a pile of parts including a NOS block to him for the build. He has one moto that is everything must be perfectly and visibly clean. Not chemically cleaned on the hope all deposits will be magically removed

So for the block - as I said NOS - He was not happy with this. Every oilway in the block must have been drilled originally and you will find a plug where it was drilled ( like on the crankshaft). So all the plugs were drilled out and every oilway cleaned by passing a drill inside followed by pipe cleaners etc.

For the sump he spent 4 hrs with an endoscope and various dentists picks in the rear piece pulling out any oil deposits
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 09:05 AM Thread Starter
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Your 2600 block is all alu.

I discussed yesterday with a very wellknow specialist, here in Paris, in rectification and restoration of iron and alu blocks.

He said that it's quite impossible to clean up the inside of the engine. It's very dangerous (for the engine) to clean up with acid, because the iron will desintegrate (I don't know if it's the right word) all the time. And I will have rusty iron parcels in the coolant for the rest of the life.

He said that ultrasonic it's powerless for that sort of cleaning.

For him, the best solution is to try with some products that freezes the rust and the engine stay with a sort of interior painting.

Now, I really don't know what to do... because it's quite impossible to access in the cooling ducts...
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 09:30 AM
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Until a few years ago every engine block of every family car was made out of cast iron ... and they were rebuilt which involved cleaning. I do not see why this block is any different and why there is such anxiousness.

Find somebody who rebuilds Chev/Ford v8's before they became alloy blocked
Pete
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