new to me 1987 Milano - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

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post #1 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 06:27 PM Thread Starter
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new to me 1987 Milano

So I purchased the 1987 Milano that was for sale in Valley Center, CA last Sunday. The car had not been run since 2007 and last started 2010 per the seller.

Car looked clean enough so I purchased the car and had it towed to my office. Monday I placed an order for all the usual items to baseline the car.

[IMG]http://i59.photobucket.com/albums/g293/captruff
/1987%20alfa%20milano/IMG_6036_zpszsb24lcx.jpg[/IMG]




















UPS brought me the new parts today so I put the car on the lift, drained the tank, the fuel looked ok, but wow it smelled really bad. I put in a new fuel pump which I suspected was the no start issue and I was right. Car started up and idle smoothed out after a few minutes.

Gotta go put some miles on her now with mobile phone and AAA card by my side!


Jeff
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Last edited by captruff; 04-07-2016 at 09:34 AM.
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post #2 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 06:36 PM
But Mad North-Northwest
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Cool, hope it treats you well.

Unless you already did it, strongly recommend you do the timing belt ASAP.

Tom

1991 Spider
1963 Giulia Spider (1750 engine)
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post #3 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 07:26 PM
Del
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Also, change the oil and filter, putting in something like Valvoline VR1 20W-50, and a bottle of Techron (repeated every several thousands of miles to make sure the injectors stay clean, etc). Should end up being a sweet car. Even at 100k miles, our still starts immediately from cold, original cap and rotor (cleaned of course).

We have the best luck with the NGK Iridium plugs Have changed them only once.

Del

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89 Milano (wife's daily driver since 1989, Shankle Sport)
91 164S (my daily driver since 1994)
94 164LS (~Q) (trip Alfa since 2000)
72 Morgan 27 (water time since 1976)

previously owned since 1964:

62 Morris MiniMinor 850, 67 Austin 1275 Cooper S (Downton 3/4 race), 64 Giulia Sprint GT (1st red one made), 72 Fiat 128 Sedan, 75 Alfetta Sedan, 78 Alfetta Sedan, 78 GTV, 81 GTV6, 86 GTV6
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post #4 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks! I plan to base line all fluids, filters, NGK plugs, cap, rotor, coil, replace all fluid reservoirs.

After I get the car to pass smog I can register car and then start on the suspension.

I'm coming up on 10 posts so I can start posting pictures.


Jeff

Last edited by captruff; 04-07-2016 at 09:28 AM.
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post #5 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 08:23 PM
Del
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I agree that you should make sure all is close to stock so that you can get the idea of how it was designed to feel when you drive it. Then, if you want, you can make some sane but small changes to perhaps tighten things up a little. That's pretty much what we did. Nothing crazy, just suspension members which were just slightly stiffer than stock to give a small amount tighter drive. Nothing crazy. Is still the Milano Drive.

Del

Seattle

89 Milano (wife's daily driver since 1989, Shankle Sport)
91 164S (my daily driver since 1994)
94 164LS (~Q) (trip Alfa since 2000)
72 Morgan 27 (water time since 1976)

previously owned since 1964:

62 Morris MiniMinor 850, 67 Austin 1275 Cooper S (Downton 3/4 race), 64 Giulia Sprint GT (1st red one made), 72 Fiat 128 Sedan, 75 Alfetta Sedan, 78 Alfetta Sedan, 78 GTV, 81 GTV6, 86 GTV6
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post #6 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 11:48 PM Thread Starter
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I should mention that as a stable mate to the Milano I have a 1986 Mercedes 190E 2.3-16 that is a Resto mod car. I'll post a few pictures when my post count reaches 10+







Jeff

Last edited by captruff; 04-07-2016 at 09:30 AM.
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post #7 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 09:19 AM
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Welcome to the club. Milanos a great under rated cars when sorted.

87 Milano Platinum
76 Alfetta GT race car
70 Fulvia 1.3 Rally S
68 Fiat 850
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post #8 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 11:08 AM
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Looks like your M-B hood got caught in a good Nebraska breeze! You will have to get used to ducking under the Milano hood - I have often thought about relocating the prop rod catch to get a bit more height. Too many other projects to get to it yet.

Welcome to the community!

84 Spider - Long gone, but started the addiction; 85 GTV6 - Current project, Supercharged, Mega Squirt; 88 Verde - "Milo" It has a name, must be a keeper
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post #9 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 01:33 PM
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Nice car(s). I love the 190 as well. ciao, chris

Maintaining my tenuous strain on reality.
89 164 2l Twin Spark, 2011 Tonka Dump

Recently added: an 89 75 (Milano) 1.6 litre w/44K on the klok.

Past loves:
79 Alfetta GTV w/Spica, my 1st Alfa

An 88 Graduate. Not really love but interesting nonetheless.

A 68 BMW 1602 - man do I regret letting that one go!

79 Scirroco, ex plowed into an illegally parked house with it...
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post #10 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark_toro View Post
Looks like your M-B hood got caught in a good Nebraska breeze!
That's actually a service setting for the hood that MBs have. Those overengineering germans......
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post #11 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 04:11 PM
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Swepco in the gearbox!!

Don't forget. 😁

Thanks,

Rob from New Hampshire
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post #12 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 04:16 PM Thread Starter
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Small change, but the window tint was going purple so I had the old tint removed and new tint installed today.








Jeff
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post #13 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 10:02 PM
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Change the timing belt

I want to reiterative what another poster said about changing the timing belt and (more importantly) the tensioner. You are way over due for a new belt.

The timing belt failure mode for these engines, is different than most toothed belt engines. The failures typically don't occur at high RPM or high loads.

They occur when the motor is first started in the morning, or other strange events like when the car is parked in gear, in a parking lot. Another car bumps your car slightly, and then takes off. You come back, turn the engine on, the belt skips and the valves collide.

What happened was that when the car was bumped; the motor was turned in the wrong direction, putting slack into the belt.

When you then started the car the belt was lose enough to jump.

There are lots (and lots) of threads on this board about V6 timing belts and tensioners. Here's the short version.

When your car was built it had what is called a "Hydraulic Tensioner". These worked very well but tended to leak oil.

Alfa then replaced the "Hydraulic Tensioner" with a new kind of tensioner called a "Mechancial Tensioner".

The mechancial tensioners did not have the oil leak issue but introduced the new problems mentioned above; not providing enough belt tension.

This led to a Mr. Tom Zat designing, developing and selling a third kind of tensioner called the "Zat Tensioner".

This was a simple all mechanical style tensioner, that replaced the Alfa mechanical tensioner, but maintained adequate belt tension at all all times. Unfortunately Mr. Zat no longer makes or sells them.

The timing belt tensioner is located under, and is hidden by the plastic timing belt covers. If you know what to look for you can figure what tensioner you have without removing the plastic timing belt covers.

Okay, figure out what tensioner you've got.

A. Original unmolested hydraulic tensioner - Very rare to find this, but if you do; open a bottle of Champagne, pass go, collect $200 and order a rebuild kit and a new bearing. Replace the belt, rebuild the tensioner, inspect the bearing and replace it if necessary.

B. Zat tensioner - Also rare, but the same result as "A"; open a bottle of Champagne, pass go, and collect $200. Inspect the bearing, and if it's okay, leave it alone and just replace the belt.


The bearing is currently available. It was unavailable for several years, so even if your bearing is good, buy a new one and stick it in your part's stash / horde (hoarding parts is an unfortunate necessity of Alfa ownership). The Zat tensioner uses the same bearing as the original hydraulic one.

C. Mechanical Tensioner - The most likely scenario. Do not pass go and do not collect $200. Instead call up the all Alfa junkyard, called "APE" (Alfa Parts Exchange) and see if they will sell you an original hydraulic tensioner. Fit this to your engine.

You'll need to modify it to run in the "dry" configuration, and you'll need the rebuild kit and a new bearing.

Alternatively you could just purchase another mechanical tensioner, install it, a new belt, and cross your fingers.

The "Mechanical Tensioner" has being the subject of much heated debate on this forum. Some people swear by the "Mechanical Tensioner" , most people (myself included) swear at them. I won't have them in my cars.

Well that's enough for now.

Bye
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post #14 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-08-2016, 02:43 AM
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Welcome, your car is the twin to mine, only in brand new condition! Mine is CA sun baked, LA dent damaged, and otherwise aesthetically challenged but I still love this car every time I drive it.

I'm in Hollywood area. What city are you in?



Quote:
Originally Posted by ZaXxon View Post
That's actually a service setting for the hood that MBs have. Those overengineering germans......
Actually, Milanos have a similar service feature engineered into the hood hinges. You remove some bolts in the hinges and the hood flips straight up.

bob

77 Alfetta Sedan, 87 Milano, 86 Porsche 944 Turbo, 87 VW Scirocco 16 Valve
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post #15 of 62 (permalink) Old 04-08-2016, 05:53 AM
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Welcome to the "great timing belt tensioner debate". Almost as good as the "transaxle oil debate", but not as volatile as the "which wheels look the best discussion"

I've put over 150K miles on mechanical tensioners (130K on one) with no issues. What I have seen of the Zat tensioner has not impressed me. The hydraulic tensioners do leak and ruin the belt.

Converting the hydraulic version to run dry sounds interesting, and would be the path I would head in if I did not trust the mechanical version.

Regardless of tensioner type, please plan to refresh the belt sooner than later.

84 Spider - Long gone, but started the addiction; 85 GTV6 - Current project, Supercharged, Mega Squirt; 88 Verde - "Milo" It has a name, must be a keeper
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