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Discussion Starter #1
Hey Folks,

I'm in the midst of having my 1600 (1967, Duetto) rebuilt by an Alfa mechanic, among other things he found some deterioration between the bottom of the sleeve and the engine block lip where the rubber O ring is seated. I'd say the deterioration is about an 1/8" of an inch by about a 1/16 deep give or take. It's just on one cyl. number one to be exact.

I never saw any traces of water in the oil, so I don't think I was getting leakage, but not sure.

I've been quoted 1000.00 to do just that repair by his outside machinist. I don't know if the repair will be a reweld and then re machining, or what. But it sounds steep. Any suggestions on how to approach this? I don't mind paying for a repair that is so required, but neither do I have an unlimited budget. Who does??

Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Jeff
 

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Richard Jemison
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Fix

Don`t allow welding!

Simply seal with Ultra Blue sealant and Clamp the head on with old headgasket for 2 days. Then secure liners with tubes and washers while pistons are installed to prevent movement.
 

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I have used high temperature RTV for this purpose, and it has worked OK. I smear a thin coating of sealant around the circumference of the liner bottom; not just in the area where the O ring goes.

Note that you should still install the O rings, even when using sealant. The O rings locate the liners at the correct height relative to the block.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I appreciate the replies. So is it safe to assume that deterioration on the block is not that uncommon between the base of the sleeve? This is not a crack, but a pit like I said, only on the one cyl. It seems that a purist might think a more major repair/approach is needed, but you guys are saying with care, the RTV works along with new o rings. I'm trying to get a feel of the perimeters of this kind of approach and repair.

gratefully,
Jeff
 

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It's very common. This area lives in coolant, and if the water is hard and/or no antifreeze, corrosion inhibitor, etc., you'll get this kind of corrosion. The true sealing of the o-ring is against the beveled surface, but you'd rather not have major divots anywhere.

Pics would help evaluation.

Andrew
 

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Richard actually makes a special tool for lapping liner seats, from an old cut down liner. For single pits, they can easily be repaired with JB Weld which is cut roughly even with the liner seat, and then Richard's (Alfar7's) tool is used with a Borax paste to lap completely smooth, The Borax paste rinses away with water. The liner skirt can then be greased (as was done originally) with a thick grease and installed normally with "O" ring, or to be EXTRA sure of no leaks, Ultra Blue with the liner clamped in place with "O" ring.
As Andrew mentions, this is common. Richard and I have probably both repaired liner seats by welding, I know I have sent blocks out for this type repair. This is a job for a specialist as it may involve stud removal, pre heating the block in a holding fixture to prevent warp while welding, then machine work after to get the new seat the same height as the others, and finally checking the block for warp and straightening if required. The speciality shops that do this type of work on aluminum blocks and heads must know what they are doing or the block is ruined. Some repairs can be expensive, others much less.
Pictures always help. We LIKE pictures!
 

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I have sent blocks out for this type repair. This is a job for a specialist as it may involve stud removal, pre heating the block in a holding fixture to prevent warp while welding, then machine work after to get the new seat the same height as the others, and finally checking the block for warp and straightening if required.
Yes, but under what circumstances would you go through all that, instead of just smearing on some Ultra Blue sealant and clamping for 2 days? I understand that welding & machining is the only way to get the surface back to its as-new condition; I'm just not sure why you would go through all that work (and risk) if $1.59 worth of sealant would accomplish the same thing.
 

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Depends on the damage. Serious repair only for big issues. My JB repair is an overnight DIY fix for minor stuff.
Gotta have pictures Jay....
 

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Keep in mind also that corrosion on the inside of the block/liner face isn't mission critical unless it extends into the actual contact area where the liner meets the block. This is actually a fairly small area and, if it is OK, you can just clean the block surface, fit the o-ring and install the liner as standard.

Why don't you post a photo of your troublesome corrosion area?
 

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Years ago, a customer had an 1600 engine with chronic head gasket problems. I found the block was so corroded, that the liner protrusion was below the deck height (back then, people didn't see the importance of inhibitor). The owner wanted to retain his original block so I took it to the best engine machine shop in the city I lived. They sleeved the block with stainless steel rings a bit like above and fly-cut the top of the deck. It was a fantastic bit of machining and cost a pretty penny at the time, but to my knowledge, he never had problems again.
 

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This is my own 00121 block where aircraft aluminium is used instead of the bronze rings.
These rings are a lot larger, if you look closely you can see the edges.
 

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Very nice job Marc! As I spend considerable time with master machinists with my own work, I appreciate the effort spent saving that block.
 

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My experience with block and head corrosion dates back to the early 80's and at the time, at least for the 2 liters, there were literally tons of good used blocks (and heads) available. That may not be the case nowadays and maybe never was the case for the early 1600 and 1750's.

My particular problem was rooted in a previous owner's attempts to fix a leaking head gasket. The block did not have the oil passage o-ring fix when I rebuilt it. The corrosion was most likely the result of repeatedly topping off the coolant system with tap water but the real problem was that someone had apparently tried to fix the problem by over tightening the head nuts. So, after going to all that trouble of cleaning up the corrosion in the block one of the studs pulled right out when I did the hot re-torque right after my rebuild. I had to pull the motor back out and completely tear it down again. I considered having a helicoil put in but decided not to chance it and just picked up another used block that was in good condition.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My block has been over at my mechanic's place, and I've meant to snap a picture, and with all the rebuild discussion I've been having with him, I keep forgetting, plus it has not been fully cleaned up yet. I looked at it again and it's actually worse than I first thought. He just found another block (800.00) which appears to be in good shape and it looks like we are going to go in that direction. My "original" block was changed out somewhere in the past because the number plate is blank, never had a number on it. So I'm not losing any number matching that happened somewhere in the past. Down the road I may have the "old" block repaired (or sell as is) and sell it to help offset my rebuild costs, nothing is cheap on this project!

Thanks for all the suggestions on this.
Without finding the second block I would have had to take your knowledge to heart and and decide what kind of repair would be in order. I'll still try to post a pic just so you can see for yourselves what I'm facing.

Jeff
 

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Engine numbers for these cars (105/115 series) were not recorded or archived by Alfa. Ergo..there is no such thing as a numbers matching block unless you have documentation from the original registration. Note, the serial number can be located in one of two places;RH side of the block near the distributor or the top of the LH side buttress used to mount the gearbox.

However, the correct type of block you want is well documented. For a '66 1600 Duetto you're looking for something that starts with *00536*. Somebody else with far more knowledge and experience than me will be along in a moment to tell you what serial number range would be appropriate for the period :)

An un-numbered block could be quite valuable to somebody. So don't toss it and post some pictures when you can
 

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FWIW other than the crankshaft, connecting rods, manifolds, cam cover, bell housing, timing cover, pulleys and sprockets nothing on my engine is original. That's not something that bothers me though as I've gotten a few hundred thousand miles of pleasurable driving out of it and don't give a hoot what anyone else thinks it's worth.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Picture of the deterioration

Here's a pic of the degradation of the number one cylinder. That's not dirt... that corrosion. I realize it's a giant close up... sorry I tried to resize it, but at least you don't need your glasses on... shoot you could see this with your eyes closed!

Jeff
 

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Had the same problem with a ´62 1600 Block, repaired with JB weld and reshaped with one old liner and borax pasta (like Gordon Raymond always advise), the darker grey stuff along the liner seat is the JB weld already reshaped
 

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