Inside Superleggera - Adventure in time - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 06:28 AM Thread Starter
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Inside Superleggera - Adventure in time

Hi all,

I would like to share with you my journey in the restoration process of the 1900 css from 1954. The journey started 3 years ago...

Due to liars (and thieves) to whom I had entrusted the car, nothing had been done except to scatter all the parts, to lose some of them and to badly do the work on the rest.

Then irritated enough because nothing was done for me and other people like me. So I got back, not the car, but the company. I shall then be sure that the work will be very well made, not only for me, but also for the others.
So I laid off everybody, hired new people competent and serious.

The journey can begin... started in June 2018.

The report : a superleggera structure + an aluminium body in parts + a heap of parts (not always from 1900...)

Observation : At that time, the superleggera structure wasn't finished very well. We understand that the production must go on, and details wasn't on first plan. Welds are unrefined, the invisible parts are quickly assembled between them. I think energy was given onto the visible aspects of the car. And it was normal.
Nowadays, people want a perfect car in every aspects, and I agree with that. even if a lot of numerous hours of work remain invisible.

The car : Very tired with many of small modifications made by diverse people during the years make of the car an attractive resurrection project !

After long consideration, we decide (in 2015) ; still valid today :

- to restore the chassis from A to Zwith correct look
- to make a new alloy body from A to Z (the current one is modified, degraded, old, brittle)
- to restore from A to Z drive train and trans
- to restore from A to Z engine, gearbox, rear axle, brakes, steering system
- to make new wiring harness, new brake lines and so on
- to built seats and a lot of little chrome parts (missing or not correct period)
- to source other parts (done today, expect the ashtray, but maybe we'll do it)

and to ask info at the BB members when we don't know

The car and chassis :
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Chris, in love with Alfa from...'68, but it wasn't always reciprocal !
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post #2 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 06:35 AM Thread Starter
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The frame before and after sanding :
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Chris, in love with Alfa from...'68, but it wasn't always reciprocal !
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post #3 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 06:39 AM Thread Starter
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Obseravtion :

The frame was equipped with a huge auxiliary heater....
The car had hanging brake pedal with servo...
All the frame was creased...

Chris, in love with Alfa from...'68, but it wasn't always reciprocal !
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post #4 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 06:58 AM Thread Starter
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Working on frame :
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Chris, in love with Alfa from...'68, but it wasn't always reciprocal !
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post #5 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 07:26 AM
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GREAT work Chris! I like the thread title. It's always an adventure to put old Alfa's back as they were when new.


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Last edited by Gordon Raymond; 10-21-2018 at 07:29 AM. Reason: add a sentence
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post #6 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 07:54 AM
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got back, not just the car but the company!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pescara View Post
Then irritated enough because nothing was done for me and other people like me. So I got back, not the car, but the company.
Nice, Chris would you care to share more about this? I bet it will be an interesting story...

Mark
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post #7 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 08:47 AM Thread Starter
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So, the car was fiited with an inappropriate trans and rear axle coming from Ford, I suppose. The engine was 2000 touring with 4 speed gearbox and the front drive train was coming from... I don't know.

The front face was modified as a tipo 2, but with some rest of tipo 3 behind. Why ? I don't know.

On some era pictures (long time before I came accross the car, I suppose), I saw the engine number of the car.
There are sometimes miracles in life, I source the engine with the 5 speed gearbox !

From years I met very nice people everywhere in the world involved, like us, in the collector cars and especially Alfa Romeo. Thanks to them.

But the years got the best of the splendor of the model. Gauges were switched from berlina, dashboard was pierced as after an invasion of moths and body number was missing...
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post #8 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 12:57 PM
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Is your company going to restore other cars or will it cease when this car is finished?
Pete

'71 1750 Series 2 GTV:
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post #9 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-21-2018, 09:07 PM Thread Starter
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Pete,
there are other cars waiting for customers...
therefore, I believe that it will be necessary to finish all the projects before making a decision
priority is the 1900, rest will wait.
Except that last week someone left their car to make a quote (mustang 289 ci 1967) !

Chris, in love with Alfa from...'68, but it wasn't always reciprocal !
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post #10 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-22-2018, 01:14 AM
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Hi Chris,
I am doing a similar project (10 years now), 02046 a car that has not been on the road for over 40 years, and I have also met plenty of people willing to ‘help’ me with the project, some of them were professionals and others just have cost me a lot of time and a lot of money. So I think I can relate to what you have been through.
My car has just been painted last week, technical parts are ready for re-assembling the car!!!
Should you need any help in searching for parts, I have a few spare parts, some 1900, some I still don’t know which cars it belongs to..and next week I will be in Padova searching for more,or should you need detailed pictures, no problem, always happy to help in getting another Alfa back on the road.
Good luck with the project, Mike
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post #11 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-22-2018, 04:08 AM Thread Starter
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thank you Mike for your proposal.

So all the welds have been checked, repeated and completed if necessary.
All the "closed" areas were opened, changed or cleaned -it depends-, prepared against rust, and closed again.

Complete floors and trunk rebuilt and some of the longerons
A pillars and a part of B pillars rebuilt
Lower inner rear wheel arches
Some tubes of the structure
Parts of front inner wheel arches
Front crossbar
Big part behind dashboard
Big part of firewall
And so on.....

During the work...
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Chris, in love with Alfa from...'68, but it wasn't always reciprocal !
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post #12 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-22-2018, 04:49 AM
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Subscribed, love the idea of superleggera wish I could shed some weight. Regards John

Current cars 1975 spyder under resto, 1973 Berlina Resto 1976 Berlina parts car 1972 GTjunior fully restored, 1 complete rolling shell spyder.exit 1989 75 T/S sold
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post #13 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-23-2018, 08:52 AM Thread Starter
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At the begining, I really don't know a lot about the underside of the car. Of course, I saw pictures and cars on the net and in exhibitions.

But the cars were always "dressed and never naked" So when we removed the bodywork, we discovered some peculiarities.

For example, a small "anomaly" on the rear wheel arch intrigued us. We figure out it was original, because the welds were the same as the rest of the car. Buy the way, look at the original nice welds, made with care...

So, without knowing, we redid this part as originally. And all the better, because several months later we understand that it's a "support" for the battery box. So we made the battery box !
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post #14 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-23-2018, 09:15 AM
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Congratulations, really a great job !!
I thought I was the only one here to restore cars in desperate conditions !!
This year for the first time I will not be in Padova ... I would have liked to meet you and congratulate you personally.
About Padova: there is a dear friend of mine who has and sells many spare parts for your car.
If you want I can send you a pm for info.
Ciao

AR 1900 CSS'56-AR 1750 gtv'68-AR Giulia 1600TI'62-AR Brera 2.2Jts
Ex AR Giulietta SS low nose 10120.00091,Fiat 750 Zagato Targa Florio'57
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post #15 of 216 (permalink) Old 10-23-2018, 12:31 PM
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Well first of all, I sympathize. I've gone through a similarly painful experience due to the complete breach of verbal contract and trust of three individuals, throwing a vast sum of money and time away in the process.

Secondly, and more importantly, I commend you on your commitment to the car, its historical significance, and to honoring the skill and craftsmanship of those who built it.

After over 7 years my own Series II Super Sprint (Touring bodied) is in the home stretch of having its body completed (without paint) and should be back to me by year's end. I will then take a breather and begin prioritizing a complete assembly to determine what I am missing, and make sure everything fits. I will then disassemble the car, get it painted, and reassemble.


IMG_3052 by tjveloce, on Flickr

9AB520DE-C295-4EC8-BFB9-AB11BE4B6698 by tjveloce, on Flickr

I'm looking forward to sharing the story once the car is back with me.

Ciao!
-tj in the Cruz Mtns


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