Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: huntsville, alabama
Finally got the spider back on the road today. I have swapped a tranny in a day before--not this time. Travel and work uses up all the good time. The 'While I'm in there" syndrome also played a large part as I had not had this engine out since I've had it.
cleaned up engine, new oil sender, new cam cover nut gaskets, all new coolant hoses,new regular motor mounts, new thermostat (old one didn't fully close). added safety hood release cable to existing one--didn't see anything wrong with the original but--
While it was out, cleaned the engine bay, replaced all the original firewall grommets, rebushed and cleaned up the throttle linkage, replaced all the hood bumpers, degreased the tunnel, repaired any rust with the POR process rebushed the exhaust/tranny bracket.
Radiator to the shop and had the lower shroud studs replaced and I painted with eastwood radiator paint. Didn't leak before, doesn't leak now
RJ's tranny with new synchros and dogs, lightened gears and a clutch disc from clutchnet with no springs--extremely light. Standard tranny mount RJ installed with 2 new standard side bushings and 2 new poly bushings--should keep the rear of the tranny centered--not pinched. 1 1/2 qts of redline 75-90ns
Ran through the gearbox without wheels while on the jackstands. Shifter would go to the right spot but only 5th would turn the wheels. Shut it down, had a glass of red and a cigar and tried again. This time all the gears worked. Ran it long enough to spread the gear oil around. I believe the shift rods were bumped when the engine/tranny was set in in--must have gotten something out of whack with the shifters. I was under the car directing from there but my helper said something about it when we were wrestling it in but I was busy.
Buttoned it up, fired it up and noticed my fispa glass bowl was leaking. Gasket was hard as steel and I disturbed it when I put in a new filter. 4 days and I had another from Classic Alfa. Got that installed last night and had help from my daughter in putting the hood/bonnet back on. Shut it and it wouldn't open. One of an Alfa owners worst fear--can't get the hood open--thoughts of holes drilled in the hood etc. Played around with it a little last night and gave up. Lever pulled the cable and a little pop would occur at the latch and the cable didn't return by spring power until you pushed down on the hood. Safety release had no effect. This morning rigged a 1/4 rope with a bowline loop and hooked the release lever and was able to pull the lever while I was able to press down on the hood at the latch. 30 minutes or so and it popped open. Reset the hood alignment with the hinge mountings and the new bumbers. Inspected the latch mechanism and only one of the 2 springs were in the latch--or there was a half of the spring on one side. I guess with the hood not aligned right and the bumpers out of whack and one of the springs broken, the latch was hung. Found a perfect 77 hood in the corner of the shop (I know somebody needs this--I don't anymore) and swapped the catch. Hood release now works perfectly.
Took it for a spin, filled up on hi-test non ethanol fuel and it purrs like a kitten. The tranny feels absolutely right--no notice of a crunch on upshifts or downshifts. I'm going to have to get used to having a synchro for first. The speedometer works perfectly--I mean it reads the same as my garmin--to a single mph--I have never had an alfa speedometer read that good. I did replace the tach and speedometer cables while I was in there.
Bottom line is the green spider is ready for spring. While this refresh was going on, I did notice I have a bastardized exhaust system. I''l fix it next winter--new downpipe and expansion chamber--no center muffler and new tail pipe
Frank Livesay Huntsville, AL
Green Alfa - 68 Canadian 1750 Spider Veloce (driver)
White Alfa - 68 Euro 1750 GTV (needs a refresh)