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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last evening, on e-bay there was a dark blue Alfa, a 1964 Guila Spider for sale at around $30K. It is a beauty, with an oddly placed rear view mirror on the right fender. The other strange thing that caused me to write this, was 4 wheel drum brakes. I was under the impression that Alfa had gone to disc brakes by this time.

I had a 1961 Giulietta Spider and it had drum brakes and a 4 speed box, and I craved the '64 update, but never was able to swing the deal on a trade. College, marriage, kids, etc., so I settled for a Giulia T I, but kept the dream alive, and then saw this '64 last night, and the old urgings reappeared.

Does anyone know anymore about progressive updates, brake wise? I now am very happy with a '85 Spider, but that Giulia is like the alluring blonde that smiles at you.

Hack Chappel
 

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The '64 Spiders had drum rear brakes and disk at the front. All disks came with the 105 series.
Done well, the 101 series cars are wonderful to drive !
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
AlfaPorsche, Many thanks for your reply. When I saw your address, I realized that I was in Ashburn on Sat.,past, at a charitable car show for a fellow who was severly injured. It was sponsored by the Porsche Club, and possibly you were there. Good turn out, but it made me long for past shows on green lawns, under shade trees. Hope we did some good for the guy. There were 5 Alfas, 4 Spiders and 1 GTV.
 

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Hi Hack. Yes, I was there and we spoke for a bit. I had the red Spider parked next to the GTV (we talked a bit about body side molding, among other things). It was nice to meet you. I was happy with the turnout also. Rob (the GTV owner) is trying to organize an northern VA drive. Hopefully I'll see you then. Al
 

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This is just extra information. Alfa went from the 2 shoe front drums to huge 3 shoe front drums in the 101 series time frame, then discs in front. It went like this. Radially finned rear drums, 2 shoe axial finned front drums. Radially finned rear drums, 3 shoe axially finned front drums. Axially finned 2 shoe rear drums, 3 shoe axially finned front drums, and finally, axially finned 2 shoe rear drums, and front discs. NO vacuum booster on these cars. Then the 105 series.
There were advantages and problems all along the way. Alfa ALWAYS had wonderful brakes. The three shoe fronts were serious overkill for the weight of these cars. Beautiful, and only a little complex, the three shoe fronts liked to be used to keep fluid from gumming up one of the three wheel cylinders. They developed a reputation for being not easy to adjust that was completely unfounded. They needed clean fluid, and periodic bleeding to keep that fluid clean and dry to avoid sticking cylinders.
The disc replacement was lighter than the three shoe drum, good for unsprung weight. The discs were not used on a lot of cars, and though good, in OEM trim with the 3/4" master cylinder, could give a spongy pedal feel. At some point in time, parts became an issue, as these three piston units were also used on a low production run Ferrari.
Years ago when racing my '65 spider, I did not like this spongy pedal feel. I could have used a 1" master cylinder, had a firmer pedal, with a little more pedal effort, or the BIG 3 shoe drum master cylinder with a real firm pedal, and even more pedal effort.
I chose to fit Giulietta 2 shoe axially finned front drums with racing linings in front and the same style axially finned, rear 2 shoe drums with racing linings, maintaining the 3/4 " master cylinder. The front brakes weighed less than the discs or 3 shoe, AND I had a firm pedal. These stopped the car from well over 100 mph again and again in racing with no fade, and no mechanical problems. Perfectly adequate in racing for these light cars. When I reconverted the car to front discs for street use, the front linings still had 3/4 lining remaining! Those brakes went back on a restored 61 spider, as they were, and are still there working fine.
The prettiest version is either the axial front and rear 2 shoe drums, or axial rears and axial 3 shoe front drums. Discs, or drums, they all stop fine. In the late '60's a kit was actually available, directly from Alfa USA, to convert front drums (either ones) to the new disc brake set up. We used to have options!
From my experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Gordon Raymond, Many thanks for your very informative reply. This site is amazing for the amount of knowledge that can be gleaned. The Alfa in question is long gone, so once again I'm harmless. I think I mentioned that I'm currently enjoying a '85 Spider, and its' my 3rd Alfa over a lond period of time. Little things come up periodically, that I will need advice on and it is reassuring to get help from people like you.
Best regards, Hack
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yes, Al, I do remember our enjoyable conversation, and I do look forward to seeing you again. Good show but hot and no shade. Maybe, see you at The Old Brogue on a Sun., morning, one of these weekends.

Hack
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
101/105Guy, Thanks for your reply. I'm new here, but it's very helpful to get important info., from people like you. My current Alfa, an '85 Spider is serving me well, but it's been 40 some years since I owned a '65 Giulia TI, so a learning curve is in place. Thanks again, Hack
 
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