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Discussion Starter #1
At long last I started the rebuild of my ’91 164S today. The plan is to rebuild the engine, front and rear suspension, brakes, clean-up / rebuild everything in the engine compartment as needed, rebuild stepper motors, and new tires. The engine was running strong, but using way too much 60w oil and fouling too many spark plugs.

The engine & sub-frame are almost ready to drop out with the exception of a few items - disconnecting the steering rack from the steering column shaft (thanks Alfisto Steve for your thread “Changing a leaking Alfa 164 Steering rack, etc....“), and removal of the front wheel ABS phonic sensors.

I need help with the phonic sensors. They’re frozen into place, but before trying to free them using a hammer & punch on the flanges, I’d like to ask if that’s ok or will that cause damage to them; I.E. can they rotate within their bores or are they splined? Tried the search function and 164 cardisc for this, but no useful results.

Thanks,
 

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"but using way too much 60w oil and fouling too many spark plugs"

Be sure you install new better brand oil rings on that S engine, as evidently that was the problem with 91S engines, not leaky valve stem seals. It has been reported that the OEM oil rings didn't work, and replacing them with something better cures the oil consumption problem for the 91S engine.
 

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I need help with the phonic sensors. They’re frozen into place, but before trying to free them using a hammer & punch on the flanges, I’d like to ask if that’s ok or will that cause damage to them; I.E. can they rotate within their bores or are they splined? Tried the search function and 164 cardisc for this, but no useful results.

Thanks,
Leave them in the hub carriage assembly. Trace the ABS cables back to innder fender near strut towers and disconnect them there. Be careful even there beacuse connectors are brittle.

Once you have sub frame and engine out of car you may be able to soak them good with PB blaster and eventually get them to free up. Chances are they will never free up so just leave them alone. They are not splinned though and just rust in place. If you insist on trying to remove them once you have allen head bolt out you can try to move them back and forth by using hammer and punch against flange or in bolt hole in sensor flange to slowly free up. Some do come out but usually get damamged in the process.
 

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Have you figured out how much all of this will cost you? You know you'll never recover it when you sell the car.
 

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You can't afford it if you have to do that

Have you figured out how much all of this will cost you? You know you'll never recover it when you sell the car.
Like my friend sez, "If he had to figure that out he wouldn't have an Italian car hobby.'"
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Thanks for the replies so far...

Be sure you install new better brand oil rings on that S engine, as evidently that was the problem with 91S engines, not leaky valve stem seals. It has been reported that the OEM oil rings didn't work, and replacing them with something better cures the oil consumption problem for the 91S engine.
Yes, that's my understanding of the oil consumption problem. The engine has over 160k mile on her, so full rebuild will be done including the heads. Performance mods will be minimal, likely limited to blueprint/balancing and lightening the valve train as described in Jim. K's book.

Steve, thanks for the info on the sensors. I'll continue soaking them with PB Blaster, but will disconnect and leave 'em in for now. I thought those connectors on the strut towers might be the ones. Looks like I need to get serious about a wiring diagram for the 164S (not on the Cardisc). Those sensor cables were hard to trace once they dissappeared thru the sheet metal.

Have you figured out how much all of this will cost you? You know you'll never recover it when you sell the car.
No, I'd rather not. It doesn't matter too much, I want the car done so I can enjoy a somewhat modern Alfa with 4 seats that's comfortable for a 350 mile day (I.E. trips to Lime Rock). It's ok if the numbers are upside down by $5k, I'll do all the work except for machine shop stuff.

Keep us updated with photos
Ok, Will try to over the next few days. Nothing really photo-worthy yet. Love those wheels on a 164!
 

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Really the only thing missing for the 164S wiring on the car disc is the 4-wire motronic wiring for the air flow meter. The B/L have 5-wires for AFM.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It's out!

Had a good afternoon yesterday and completed the removal of the subframe with engine. No real hangups, but kept finding hoses and wires I hadn't noticed earlier. The starter motor cables were the last to go, and I found those easier to remove with the engine lowered part way down to the dollly. I hope to never replace a starter on a 164 with the engine in. Managed to get the job done with no damage to car or human parts.

Here's a description of the photos:

1st pic shows a normal engine hoist setup to lower the assembly down onto a 4-wheeled dolly.

Next I rigged support blocks to hold the rear of the sub-frame since I didn't know the balance point before removing the rear sub-frame bolts. This was a good thing since there ended up being a lot of weight resting on these, so I adjusted the hoist chain for better balance.

Next the engine is partially lowered onto the waiting dolly.

Next pics show side and front views of assembly resting on the dolly.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
More photos

Now the engine hoist is rigged to lift the front of the body with a chain. Need enough clearance to slide the whole thing out thru the wheel opening.

Next...Here's the body raised and the assembly sitting on a single dolly with the hoist out of the way. I later added another dolly since it was obviously tippy with just the one.

Finally it's out!
 

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Nice work! I see your S has Recaros.
 

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Outstanding work! Look, you just can't go out and spend 4 or 5 grand these days and not end up with a Chevy that's 6 years old. Money spent on these cars will reward you with a smile on your face a Chevy will never be able to deliver. Sort out all the issues and resale value be damned! Chances are you will never sell anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Nice work! I see your S has Recaros.
Thanks for the encouragement.
Yes, wonderfully pristine Recaros except for a small mouse hole in the rear seat. Still searching for suitable repair leather for 3 years now! That perforation pattern/hole size must be somewhat unique.

Sort out all the issues and resale value be damned! Chances are you will never sell anyway.
My thoughts exactly. After 160k miles there are the usual issues, but none that are unmanageable. When completed, however much it ends up costing, we'll have a functionally new, very fun (but a bit fussy to maintain) car, for relatively short money. I'm also feeling like we've seen the value of 164's bottom out and hopefully good ones won't be throwaway cars much longer.
 

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You have a good outlook on the 164. You will probably not recoup what you spend on it, but they will last a long time if well cared for and are soooo much fun. My 1st one I bought in 1993 with 19,000 mile. I totalled it with 167,000. The engine is now rebuilt and in the red 164S, my daily driver
 
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