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Discussion Starter #1
I ama British car guy but have just come upon a 1986 Alfa Veloce Spider that I might buy.

The car was restored about three years ago but last fall was under water for a couple of hours. You can celarly see the water line - it is just udner the dash - it is dirty from there down and almost spotless from that point up. I haven't tried to turn it over but when you turn the key, all the electricals work, radio works, etc so it sort of confirms that nothing got in to dash electricals.

My question is - is there anything lthat would be below the dash line electrical wise that would need to be checked? I figure the starter might be an issue but what about any computer electronics, etc. I am not familiar with Alfas so not sure what all electrical components are there and where they are located.

If I were to buy it, I would flush all the fluids, etc, pull everything out of the interior and celan everything before doing anything else.

The car is in exception condition otherwise - very nice paint, new top, great looking leather (although dirty looking right now), has AC, etc. The original wheels are there and look very nice and the tires probably don't have 5000 miles on them. The car isn't moldy smelling or anythign like that - just dirty at the water line and below. I can buy it for $1800 - don't know if that is a decent price or not.

Thanks

Bob
 

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The starter was most likely under water, yes; it's pretty low on the engine. It's very hard to get to on a Bosch Spider though. The ECU, relays, and some sensors are behind the seats under the rear panel; I bet they got plenty wet too. Seems like it couldn't hurt to try turning it over; be ready to remove the battery cables at the first sign of trouble.

Make sure the cylinders/intake/airbox don't have any water in them. Have you looked at the dipstick to make sure there's oil, not water, in the engine?

Andrew
 

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Car probably has a salvage title from the water damage. This isn't a car I'd go nuts over, but if the price is right and it works, why not? I'd say the price is high given all the possible problems, including water in trans, water in diff, never-ending electrical problems, etc.
Problem Bosch Spiders are not worth much. Then again, if everything functions, could be OK. But salvage title is a killer in terms of resale value.
Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Car has good title - he didn't have insurance

How much is the ECU, relays and sensors if you need to replace them all?
 

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Hundreds. Search on ebay or call APE here in Calif (209) 365-1383. I'd first worry about water in the engine, trans, diff. If you turn it over the water in the cylinders, bang goes the piston, rod, crank, valves, head.
Andrew
 

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I didn't see where you live but the type of water (salt or fresh) makes a huge difference as well.

I agree with the other posters. Newer spiders don't seem to bring much...and if you have to put too much into it you aren't going to recoup your investment.
 

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A decent running, cosmetically average Bosch Spider in CA is a $1500-2000 car. So I'd spend a lot less on this owe. I personally wouldn't pay more then junkyard value if you can't verify function of stuff.
Andrew
 

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Bob,

If you are looking for a nice driver, a bosch spider is way more friendly than a series 2 or before but as others have stated the values are pretty low.

It is quite possible that the Fuel ECU and the Ignition ECU are ruined [they both reside under the rear shelf behind the passenger seat. [with that said, they can be had used relatively inexpensively] The main and drive relays are back there too in addition to the altitude compensator. On the other hand, they may be ok...only way to know is change the oil pull the plugs turn her over and then replace plugs and try to fire it up.

I would think the car would be worth less than $1000 as it is, however.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
First let me say thanks for all the replies - they are very helpful. I will try to answer more questions/comments

I doubt the guy woudl go below $1500 - he has receipts for a ton of work he had down with in the past year including $3500 to have the entire fuel system rebuilt, a brand new high quality top, new paint within the past three years, etc. It also has new tires and either the leather seats have been really preserved over the years or they have been recovered - he said they were that way when he bought it several years ago. They are super nice as is the rest of the car. If it were cleaned up you would never know it from a nice clean example of a 86 Spider.

But, if it is only worth a $1000 then I might as well pass on it as I know he won't go that low.

I am not so much concerned with it as an investment but I thought it would be a "british like" car with AC for fun summer driving - I am in Alabama - it gets VERY hot in the summer months - too hot for top down driving during the mid day. I ahve restored a bunch of cars over the years so I see this as a challenge BUT if it is ore trouble than it is worth I may pass - I also am NOT made of money so it isn't like I can just throw money at it without consequence.

The story on the car, as I have been told, is that the water got up into his garage where the car was sitting and stayed there for about 2 hours before rescending. The water got up to just below the dash so it was over the console where the window switches etc are but not into the fuse panel, etc.

After the water rescended, he pushed the car out of his garage after that and opened it up to try to air it out. After that it sat for a while and the battery drained. He drained the oil and replaced it with fresh oil and new filter and pulled the plugs and cleaned them. He didn't have anything but a small battery charger so it wouldn't bring the battery up enough in the short time he tried to turn the engine over. All the electricals worked except the driver's window. The water was fresh rain water but of course dirty so it looks inside as if it has been sitting in a dusty shop - doesn't look moldy, mildewed or smell funky.

I assume the water was high enough to get into the rear panel? I am going over there tonight with my large battery charger with a 200 Amp boost start to see what happens when we try it. I am not expecting much but you never know.

The guy didn't have insurance so he still has a clear title on the car.

Don't know - probably will pass on it but I do appreciate the help

Bob
 

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If the water came in that high, it surely filled the trough behind the seats, under the rear parcel shelf where the injector ecu lives. In fact, I'd bet that it's still under water, or at least swimming, along with important grounds and relays. If the ecu was wet and you turned the key on, it is now an expensive paper weight. I think you have a part donor car- but not worth what they're asking. Hey, we all need parts!
 

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You haven't said where you are, but check ebay and the nearest big city craigslist for Bosch Spider values.
Yes, cover comes up with some screws. It's the package shelf/seat area behind the seats, in front of the folded top.
Andrew
 

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The rear shelf is easy...4 screws then velcro holding the shelf carpet to the main carpet...lift the whole panel away..if there are speakers back there disconnet the wires.

BTW, my other toy is a Tr6--you are right--the spider is a great driver and my a/c works nicely but it will not cool you like say a 2011 Chevrolet or something so you will still be warm in AL in the summer.
 

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I "graduated" from an MGA Twin Cam to Alfas in 1977 and have never looked back. I still have the TC, but it's a tractor compared to the Alfas I've owned.
Andrew
 

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I used to have a 1974 TR6 and a 1980 TR8 both with a/c....they worked reasonably well....but not like a new car!

You can have a/c (of some sorts) in a British car...lol
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Well I am not too excited about this one - figure it is more trouble than it is worth. Not even sure now if I will even go back over tonight and see what it will do.
 

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It all goes to show, one must get his priorities straight. You don't invest a bunch of time and money into something and pass on insuring it. Another one of those "It would never happen to me" things. Sad story.
 

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I personally think it's worth going to look at. If you like it, it seems to function, etc. but he's firm on his price, you aren't missing anything and you've just wasted a bit of time. He may come to his senses pricewise if he sits on it awhile and you can reconsider.
Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Yea it is ashamed because otherwise it is a VERY nice car. I haven't looked at many Alfas but of the ones I have looked at it is as nice of an example as I have seen. It is obvious some money has been poured into this car over the years.
 
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