Alfa Romeo Montreal - Steering Re-enforcement Plates - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-22-2017, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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Alfa Romeo Montreal - Steering Re-enforcement Plates

In the process of removing the engine from my Montreal, I have also tried to clean up the Engine Bay in general, and there was something that was mentioned some time ago about a re-enforcing plate to stiffen the Steering Box mounting to the body. I removed the bolts that hold my Steering Box to the Wheelhouse Inner. There are 3 Grade 8.8 bolts, and I noticed that on closer inspection, the bolts were slightly bent. Not in the main shank portion of the bolt, but through the threaded section. All 3 bolts had the same characteristics, they were difficult to turn for a few threads and then would loosen up, only to tighten up again and so forth until the bolt came out completely. In checking them with a straight edge, I noticed the shank portion was straight, but the threaded portion was bent by up to 1.0mm. The bolts had been tight when I removed them, so the bending cannot be attributed to loose fasteners flexing in the body.
I have been working on developing a Re-enforcement Plate for both sides - right and left. I am also upgrading the mounting bolts to Grade 10.9. I will post pictures in the next few days. I would appreciate your feedback.
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post #2 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-22-2017, 09:00 PM
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I will get mine from Rob in the UK when I get to that stage.

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post #3 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-23-2017, 01:47 AM
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I got mine from Rob (see link in Derek's post). Good quality, clear instructions, friendly guy, great service. Highly recommended
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post #4 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-23-2017, 01:51 PM
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The strengthening plates were recommended for LHD cars.
I guess it wont hurt to put them on RHD cars like mine.

I did it once on a LHD car. There was a little less creaking from the steering wheel.

Steve
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post #5 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-23-2017, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by SHaszz View Post
The strengthening plates were recommended for LHD cars.
I guess it wont hurt to put them on RHD cars like mine.

I did it once on a LHD car. There was a little less creaking from the steering wheel.

Steve
I believe Karl has a RHD car even though he is in Michigan now -from Australia. I wonder if the car was ever involved in a front end impact or maybe jumped a curb that could have bent those bolts? I just checked all three bolts that were removed from my steering box and all are straight. Interestingly when I cleaned them, removing black spray paint, all three bolt heads have green paint on them. I suspect these were inspected at the factory and painted green to indicate that they were (once) tight.

My reinforcement plates (inner and outer on the left side only) for the steering box came from Rob in the UK as well. I asked and he supplied the proper length through bolt and nylock nut for the bottom lug. Originally my bolts were fairly loose compared with the torque specification he provided. Steering feels a bit more taught and confident now; or at least I do.

Karl, if you want these original LOBO bolts just let me know.

Mark

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post #6 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-24-2017, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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Alfa Montreal - Steering

Here are some pictures of the Steering Reinforcement Plates mounted on both the RHS and LHS of the car with Grade 10.9 Bolts, As you can see, the Plates have been reinforced with 3 Gussets running from the bolt holes to the center of the plates to minimize flexing across the flat surface. This should put finish to Steering Flex!!!
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post #7 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 06:18 AM Thread Starter
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By the way, the lengths of the Bolts is different side to side. The Bolts that screw "into" the Steering Box are shorter. The longer Bolts go on the opposite side need the length because of the Nuts required. Just a note to anyone working on their Steering Assembly!
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post #8 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 10:51 AM
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I'm not understanding why you put in higher grade bolts? Sure the 8.8's bent but most importantly they didn't break, which is what you want and absolutely need for steering.

Best
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post #9 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
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The Grade 10.9 bolts are stronger than the Grade 8.8 bolts. They are less prone to bending under the same loads. It was my choice to fit the stronger fasteners. You do not have to. You can choose the original LOBO bolts that had a 8.8 Grade rating.
The comparison is as follows:
Grade 8.8: Medium carbon steel, quenched and tempered. Proof Load (MPa)-600. Min. Yield Strength - 660 Min. Tensile Strength - 830
Grade 10.9: Alloy Steel, quenched and tempered. Proof Load - 830 Min. Yield Strength - 940 Min. Tensile Strength - 1040
Google it mate! You will find the same results.
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post #10 of 50 (permalink) Old 12-26-2017, 01:48 PM Thread Starter
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BTW, in Tensile strength, that is a 25% improvement, and a 42% improvement in Yield Strength. Proof Load would be up by 38%. Costs a couple of bucks more, but well worth it in my opinion. Cheers!!
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post #11 of 50 (permalink) Old 01-01-2018, 09:47 AM Thread Starter
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I would like to mention that in making the Reinforcement Plates for the Montreal Steering, I made up a couple of extra sets.
If you are interested, they come as a Set with 2 Reinforcing Plates, Grade 10.9 Bolts, Nuts and Washers. PM me please. Thank you.

Happy New Year to you all!!!


Karl Robertson
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248) 766 9141
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post #12 of 50 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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Alfa Montreal - Steering / Reinforcement Plates and Bolts

As in any forum, I know there will always be a debate about most things, that is great!
Anyway, since I have removed all the Bolts and added the Re-enforcement Plates and upgraded Bolts, I went back and decided to check the Grade 8.8 LOBO fasteners from Alfa Romeo. Guess what? 2 Bolts were bent on the Steering Box Side (mine is a RHD car) but mainly through the threaded portion of the bolts. On the other side, there are longer bolts and nuts. 2 of them were also bent, through the threaded section of the Grade 8.8 LOBO Bolts. I am not sure how many of you have removed these bolts and checked them recently. I for one am happy to have replaced them with new Grade 10.9 Bolts!!!
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post #13 of 50 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 11:30 PM
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Robo,

I only mentioned or questioned going to a harder bolt because the harder you go the more likely the bolt will snap instead of bending. Now being part of the steering system, you don't want snapping.

To be honest I did not know you could get harder/stronger bolts than 8.8, so I've learnt something ... and yeah I have no idea how hard a bolt has to be before we have to worry about snapping?

I'm as fascinated as you that ALL the original bolts bent, amazing. And nice job on the reinforcement plates.
Pete

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post #14 of 50 (permalink) Old 01-10-2018, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Grade 10.9 Bolts do not break. They are a stronger version of the Grade 8.8 Bolts. Please Google it and you can reference all the comparative data yourself. I can assure you that I would not be using them on my car if I thought there was any possibility of them breaking. They are not required for all applications, but in areas where there are Bending Loads involved, they are a good alternative. For your information, they are considerably more expensive and may be the reason why manufacturers do not use them often.

The Grade 10.9 bolts are stronger than the Grade 8.8 bolts. They are less prone to bending under the same loads. It was my choice to fit the stronger fasteners. You do not have to. You can choose the original LOBO bolts that had a 8.8 Grade rating.
The comparison is as follows:
Grade 8.8: Medium carbon steel, quenched and tempered. Proof Load (MPa)-600. Min. Yield Strength - 660 Min. Tensile Strength - 830
Grade 10.9: Alloy Steel, quenched and tempered. Proof Load - 830 Min. Yield Strength - 940 Min. Tensile Strength - 1040

Karl Robertson
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post #15 of 50 (permalink) Old 01-10-2018, 10:23 AM Thread Starter
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Pete,
Sorry, I mis-stated that Grade 10.9 Bolts do not break. Of course the can break, but at much higher bending loads. In other words, the higher grade Alloy Steel is more durable under load and for me, it's cheap insurance - 6 Bolts - !!!
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