some info - the car was originally a 1968 Guilia 1750. It was converted in the mid to late 1970s into an all glass fibre bodied racer, and it won the first UK Alfa touring car championship in 1979(?). Over the next few years it changed hands a few times, but in the late 1980s some vandals broke into the lockup it was stored in. They kicked in all the glass fibre bodywork, totally destroying the front end and most of the rear. To add insult to injury, them emptied all the cans of paint and brake fluid in the lockup all over the car, then stole the wheels, leaving it on its brake discs
It was put on a set of steelies so that it was possible to roll, and then put into storage.
In September last year, it emerged from storage to become a project car for a newly formed group called OUMF - Oxford Universities Motorsport Foundation. We are a group of students that believe that to become well rounded, employable engineers, we need to be able to understand how to build and run
a car, not just design bits of carbon fibre bodywork or titanium conrods on computers like some of our peers. Members are all engineering students at Oxford and Oxford Brookes universities (NOTE: WE'RE NOT POSH RICH KIDS WITH DADDIES THAT OWN WILTSHIRE!!), both of which are reknowned for producing excellent engineers. However in recent years the amount of contact time with the "real world" of car building and running has been greatly reduced by the universities, and now Oxford has no car running facililties at all, and even though Brookes is currently moving its engineering department to a state of the art facility, practical demonstration time as part of its courses have been reduced to under 20 hours per academic year.
Some tech specs - we believe the engine to be a 1750, as the marking on the head is a circle containing a square with a diagonal line through it. (any help with identifying it most appreciated, we have the engine number). It currently breathes through a pair of Dellorto DHLA48 carbs. The exhaust is an aftermarket manifold but is otherwise a fairly standard system (no side pipes!).
Sadly this engine is rather tired and has low oil pressure (although this may be a dodgy gauge/sender unit, we are trying to find a proper capillary fed gauge) and is a bit tappety when it runs. We are on the hunt for a new one (all donations gratefully recieved
We have been offered several working 1980's Alfa 75 type twin spark engines, but we understand that is is quite an undertaking to modify these to run in this sort of car and would prefer a period 2 litre 105 engine to go in it.
The gearbox is the standard 5 speed unit. I am not 100% on what the diff is, but it isnt standard. We had been told that is was an LSD, but yesterday we drove it on grass at a show and the inside rear wheel was spinning up a treat!
The suspension uses the Harvey Bailey handling kit springs (and front roll bar, i think!) and uprated Koni performance dampers. Poly bushes have been fitted all round (much fun was had with the gas axe burning out the old crumbly bushes!). We have not managed to find a 1300 panhard rod to replace the huge original 1750 unit (as was done on the real GTams)
The body was converted from all glass fibre back to steel wings using a donated car that had been sat in a garden for 15 years. The tops of the wings on the donor car were in good nick, so they were removed and fitted to the racer. The very rusted bottoms were cut off and discarded, but this did not matter as we knew that we were fitting GTam arches. The right hand arches came from crashed GTam replica (we were given the left hand arches too, but they were on the side of the car that was crashed and were no good). The lefts are new pattern units. The doors, bonnet and bootlid are the glass fibre ones that came with the car. The doors are just shells, so we put aluminium honeycomb cores in them and then vinyl covered interior panels.
A new drivers floor was fitted, and the chassis rails were removed and repaired according to where the rot had set in.
When the car was a racer in the '70s it had had a sprint tank in the boot, mounted on top of a blanking plate put in place of the original tank. We removed this, sured up the blanking plate, then put in a new spare wheel well, and were given an FIA spec bag tank. It is small, but is sufficient at the moment.
The original rollcage was still legal, but one of the people paying to drive the car (an OUMF member has friends that work in the financial city in London, and managed to persuade them to partially sponsor the project in return for being allowed to race and hillclimb it on occasion) is 6'6" tall, and the old cage left no space for him with a helmet on. A new Fabricage rollcage was sourced and fitted, with the main roll hoop fitted much further back to allow for all shapes and sizes to drive it!
The wheels came from another GTam replica that was being sold (the seller had a new set of wheels for it). We found out yesterday (at the excellent UK alfa romeo owners club day at Boughton house) that they were from a Ford rally car! They are 15" Compomotive alloys, using 245/45/R15 tyres. I am not sure of offsets, but can find out for anyone that is interested. They look the part though!
any more questions/encouragement/advice/offers of a new engine greatly appreciated!