Best performance mods for a '91, cheapest 1st!? - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 04:12 PM Thread Starter
 
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Best performance mods for a '91, cheapest 1st!?

I am trying to get some more zip from my '91.
So far I am getting the Squadra chip,
I read/heard that the stock headers are good as is and better than aftermarket,
I read/heard that an electric fan will save some HP,
My mechanic told me a bigger MAF will give HP/power(?? from where-what car, store?)
Muffler-where, which one, how much, about?

What are the best performance mods I can make/get, from SIMPLE & chespest first?

Thanks,
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 04:44 PM
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Exhaust is where I'd start.. not only for performance/cost but mostly for the SOUND wind it out when crossing a bridge or against a wall and WOW! that is music to my ears.

Here in SC we don't have any emissions regs, or any inspections for that matter.. so depending on where you live and how you feel about sound.. but I just had both my mufflers removed and it sounds GREAT without being obtrusive.

I started by eliminating the center muffler (replacing with straight pipe) and then took it for a drive..barely any difference. So then I did the same with the rear muffler and... Bingo! Just what I wanted

Best of all was I didn't have to pay for 2 new mufflers, only the cost of the muffler guy who cut and welded my new pipes in (to my otherwise stock exhaust system - 91 Spider) - $200.00 plus $40 for a new stainless exhaust tip (looks stock just maybe .5" larger).

Sound is very livable and quiet if you don't rev it much.. but if you do, the sound can't be beat and the torque increase is noticable. Bang for the buck is unbeatable.

91 Spider Veloce
87 Spider Veloce - in pieces
86 Spider Quadrifoglio - hooked me!
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 04:54 PM Thread Starter
 
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Here in California we can't go nuts, lots 'o emissions and sound restrictions.
Which one/brand do you suggest, from where?
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 05:18 PM
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You may want to skip my post altogether because most of what I have to say is not what you want to hear.

The squadra chip is worthwhile, I have one and don't regret it one bit.
I seriously doubt that you will get any horsepower from exhaust mods. I did replace my rear muffler with a straight pipe from centerline. Adds some more balls to the exhaust note without being obnoxious.

I have come to the conclusion that it is best to accept a series 4 spider for what it is: a beautiful cruiser that will never be exceptionally fast. There's really not a lot of bolt on stuff that is worth doing. (If you want to put $5-6K into installing a turbo, then you can get some serious power increase)

Want to really enjoy your spider? Focus on suspension. Lose the phone dial wheels and get a nice set of lightweight 15" or 16" wheels with really good tires. Look into springs, shocks and bushings to tighten up the ride. The end result is a car that, while it takes a while to get up to speed, when you get to a turn you can just power through. For me, that's where the fun is.

Oh, if you look under your hood, you will find that you already have electric fans!

Enjoy

John

92 Spider Veloce
71 TwinSpark Spider - Soon to be 4 Sale
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 05:25 PM
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Good points.

How much do you think a set of good phonedial wheels might go for on ebay?

I've thought about leaving the spare in the garage to save a little weight.. anyone ever used the fix-a-flat in a can stuff?

Tell me more about what kind of results you saw with a set of springs/shocks/wheels/tires?

91 Spider Veloce
87 Spider Veloce - in pieces
86 Spider Quadrifoglio - hooked me!
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 05:26 PM
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BTW - tell me more about the Squadra chip.. what did it do for you?

91 Spider Veloce
87 Spider Veloce - in pieces
86 Spider Quadrifoglio - hooked me!
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 05:36 PM
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Check out EB Spares in the UK (http://www.ebspares.co.uk/ ). I bought a set of specially valved Bilsteins from them and have been extremely impressed with the results. Let's face it, any kid in one of those p.o.s. Japanese cars (wing, 3" drop, graphics, big assed exhaust, etc ) can beat us at the traffic lights, but wait till we get to the twisties
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-06-2006, 09:49 PM
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Thumbs up those throtle bodys??

wher did you get them an d well they use l-jet. i belive you are useing the ind. throtle bodys for more air-flow, for more power, do they work, i have playing around with an idea of useing spica throtle bodys, add. to the l-jet, injectors.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 10:28 AM
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From a previous post it was noted that you can use a temporary spare from a Ford Focus and this will "bolt right up".
You can save weight and get more trunk space for about $15 at the junk yard.

For your info
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phil c
Let's face it, any kid in one of those p.o.s. Japanese cars (wing, 3" drop, graphics, big assed exhaust, etc ) can beat us at the traffic lights, but wait till we get to the twisties
<--- raises had and also adds note that an '05 Mustang can be severely embarassed in almost every 'city street' corner the road has to offer along with a pile of out in the boonies stuff.

Any doofus can go fast in a straight line.......



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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 03:45 PM
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That's exactly why my suspension has been the priority over engine until the suspension is 'done'.

Bad 2nd gear syncros, low-ish compression and flicky dash lights (because that fuse is rattling loose yet again) I can deal with, poor handling I cannot.

Besides, I think it's kinda cool when the missus is all up on the door handles or whatever else she can latch onto when I start into a corner (she ain't been this grabby since high school )



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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 03:51 PM
 
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It really suck! I did all the investigation for my S3 and decided to stick with better handling so I bought bilstein, reconditioning front end, new brake lines and caliper kits (no stiffer springs). I do have a straight Ansa exhaust and IAP header with a K&N filter. It does sounds sweet reaching higher RPMs.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 07:00 PM
 
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Alfa had the engine done to near perfection to begin with. Not much room for improvement. So I agree... Do the suspension and drive the crud out of it! Enjoy!
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-07-2006, 10:53 PM
 
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Actually I think I talked to a Ferrari Tech about this question long ago, I was considering modifying my series four before I got Slammed with 4K in repairs (engine went sour). Ne who there is actually a major difference between series 1-3 spiders and series four, The series four has a different back wheel ratio( some one chime in, in a future post and get the correct terminology here. ) then the series 3, I believe this the ring and pinion, alfa changed in late 80's early 90's. Should run 300-500$ to get fixed. again plz someone chime in if this makes any sense?

I also heard that modding the engine, electrical system is foolish before modding the back wheel ratios
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-08-2006, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S4alfaguy
series four has a different back wheel ratio( some one chime in, in a future post and get the correct terminology here. ) then the series 3, I believe this the ring and pinion, alfa changed in late 80's early 90's. Should run 300-500$ to get fixed. again plz someone chime in if this makes any sense?
The S4 Spider has the 4.10 differential ratio (except for the autos). This is the same as the late Spica cars and all of the S3 cars.

Joe
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