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1977 Spider 49-State
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,


Looking for all the components to this system. I just bought my first Alfa and these items were removed. I'm looking to return the car to OEM condition. Any leads on these parts would be greatly appreciated.

Trying to preserve my recently-acquired Alfa in all-original condition.

The car has single points installed as someone had modified the distributor from dual. I have the wire harness from the distributor to coil, but that's about it.

Hopefully someone has these items lying around somewhere from one of the many cars where SPICA was removed?

All help is greatly appreciated.
 

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Although we all appreciate anyone’s steadfastness to originality, this is one instance I would advocate for just getting a 123 distributor (Bluetooth or switched) and an MSD blaster 2 coil with the MSD ballast resistor.
From your starting point then all you need is that the chassis side green and green/black wires are over by where the coil mounts and a set of spark plug wires, you will have a robust ignition system for many years to come.
 

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1977 Spider 49-State
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Although we all appreciate anyone’s steadfastness to originality, this is one instance I would advocate for just getting a 123 distributor (Bluetooth or switched) and an MSD blaster 2 coil with the MSD ballast resistor.
From your starting point then all you need is that the chassis side green and green/black wires are over by where the coil mounts and a set of spark plug wires, you will have a robust ignition system for many years to come.

True, but I was wanting to go in the originality direction with this car. It's extremely original except for a few things. Not much in the way of hackery, though lots of deferred maintenance and ignorant attempted fixes on the SPICA system. The parts I am looking for are sitting in someones shed somewhere, since almost all the Spider have been eviscerated of these things.

Besides, I like to adjust points. It's charming and fun. :geek:

Hoping someone out there is reading this and can offer up some of the parts....
 

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1977 Spider 49-State
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Did not some of the late 70's cars come with dual point distributors?

What are these things? I'm not familiar with this terminology

Ignition Advance Relay
Thermoswitch
Ballast
Advance Wire Harness

Yes, cars from 1977 to 1979 had the dual points distributor. My distributor appears to be a dual-points version with the second set of points removed (the 2nd set of points came in a box I found in the trunk). The additional set of points was controlled by the parts I am needing.

Ballast is the ballast resistor on the ignition coil.

You can see some of the components on this 1978 wire diagram. . Harness is in the diagram below too. Would need mounting brackets and screws if possible too.


1649738
 

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I wish you luck getting that mess working properly as you will probably need it.
 
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78 Alfa Spider
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I have a 78 Spider. I'm going to echo what Ed said. Good luck getting that mess to work. There is a small bladder in the vacuum switch that has not stood the test of time. You'll have to find some other non original replacement as they don't make that part any longer. On a rebuilt SPICA, Wes Ingram has eliminated the black/white wire from the cold start solenoid that leads to the Ignition advance relay. Since you have the wiring diagram you can make your own harness. Ballast resistors are pretty easy to find.....Having done this before, I ditched it all for a very reliable Pertronix ignition.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have a 78 Spider. I'm going to echo what Ed said. Good luck getting that mess to work. There is a small bladder in the vacuum switch that has not stood the test of time. You'll have to find some other non original replacement as they don't make that part any longer. On a rebuilt SPICA, Wes Ingram has eliminated the black/white wire from the cold start solenoid that leads to the Ignition advance relay. Since you have the wiring diagram you can make your own harness. Ballast resistors are pretty easy to find.....Having done this before, I ditched it all for a very reliable Pertronix ignition.

It's more for originality than anything else, so rather than cutting and splicing, I would prefer to find that section of the harness. If I had to cut and splice....I probably wouldn't at that point and go Pertronix. (y)

What is also interesting now that you mention it, my cold start solenoid does not have the two terminals (one of which would be for the white/black wire you mentioned). It's possible someone may have swapped out the cold start solenoid. I don't see any evidence of the terminal being snapped off or anything. I don't think the pump was ever rebuilt as there is no red-dot on my pulley....(I wish I was that lucky). It is the correct model T260/1.

After looking through a 1977 maintenance manual that was sent to me from another member, it looks like I need a thermoswitch rather than the vacuum switch. Things just got much more challenging as this is probably a one-year only part.

1649771
 

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It’s all good, nothing wrong with wanting to adjust points.
I also have a 77 115.02 spica spider, I was having troubles with the dual point distributor as the cams that the advance weights rotate around had worn the heel down so that I was getting a few degrees more total overall advance than specified. Which might not seem like a big deal, however, if you set the timing to the M mark with a strobe then your idle setting is way too low and the car struggles to start and idle. Set the timing statically to the F mark and you get too much max advance, thus pinging etc.
I couldn’t find anyone interested in welding up the advance mechanisms, reshaping them and recurve the distributor back to original.
I also notice in the title you are looking for a thermal switch, which is what my 115.02 has up in the intake manifold, just aft of the thermostat. While the wiring diagram you are referencing for a 115.41 uses a vacuum bulb on the wiring diagram. So....
I would still strongly recommend what I suggested earlier, nothing stopping you from also finding good serviceable original bits and just swapping them in and out for car shows or when you want.
 

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Before you go pertronix do some reading on here, there have been several reports of reliability issues lately.
 

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1977 Spider 49-State
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It’s all good, nothing wrong with wanting to adjust points.
I also have a 77 115.02 spica spider, I was having troubles with the dual point distributor as the cams that the advance weights rotate around had worn the heel down so that I was getting a few degrees more total overall advance than specified. Which might not seem like a big deal, however, if you set the timing to the M mark with a strobe then your idle setting is way too low and the car struggles to start and idle. Set the timing statically to the F mark and you get too much max advance, thus pinging etc.
I couldn’t find anyone interested in welding up the advance mechanisms, reshaping them and recurve the distributor back to original.
I also notice in the title you are looking for a thermal switch, which is what my 115.02 has up in the intake manifold, just aft of the thermostat. While the wiring diagram you are referencing for a 115.41 uses a vacuum bulb on the wiring diagram. So....
I would still strongly recommend what I suggested earlier, nothing stopping you from also finding good serviceable original bits and just swapping them in and out for car shows or when you want.

Thanks for picking up on the details. It wasn't until this evening (maybe an hour ago) that I learned about the thermoswitch vs. vacuum switch. Looks like 1977 is a unique year. Just adds to the charm I suppose.

Part of these searches for parts allows one to really get familiar with systems, so it's not all a lost cause. That is definitely good to know about the distributor issues and thanks for sharing. I'll probably run into that when I get things back together. Just something else to watch out for.
 

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Yes, and the relay is on the inner fender, about where the lid of the air box is.
Ooo, and this was my 1000th post....
 
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