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Alfa 2600 Spider, Alfa 1750 GTV, Spider Duetto 1600
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Discussion Starter #1
Good evening, Guys

Here Pieter from Holland,

The (superb) bodywork of my 2600 Sider slowly comes to an end.
Time to decide the color of my car!
The original color is Giallo Paglierino (light yellow), which you hardly can find and that is not without a reason.
IT IS UGLY!

Therefore I am in a doubt; orinal color or Rubino Scuro or Bluette?
With the last two, the chrome work really comes to its full beauty, but with Giallo Paglierino?
What is your opinion?

Second question. The bodywork was so expensive and is done so well, that I consider to paint the engine compartment and bottom side in the color of the car. This because it is so nice and with a black finish, you hardly can see it.
What do you think?

Regards Pieter.
 

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I think many here including myself have concluded the spider looks best in darker colors (although black is not good in my book because it shows every speck of dust etc).
Tha said, this is an intensely personal decision. My recommendation is to take your time making a decision and preferably, see variously colored spiders in person or as I did, look at a lot of photos. I even looked at Ferrari 250PF spiders, which have similar body contours. In fact, it was a Ferrari that most influenced my decision and was lucky because both marques shared similar color combos during the era of their build.
 

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Time to decide the color of my car!
The original color is Giallo Paglierino (light yellow), which you hardly can find and that is not without a reason.
IT IS UGLY!

Therefore I am in a doubt; orinal color or Rubino Scuro or Bluette?
With the last two, the chrome work really comes to its full beauty, but with Giallo Paglierino?
What is your opinion?

Second question. The bodywork was so expensive and is done so well, that I consider to paint the engine compartment and bottom side in the color of the car. This because it is so nice and with a black finish, you hardly can see it.
What do you think?
Tastes change over time and loop around: What is in fashion goes out of fashion and at some point in time becomes fashionable again. I believe the same to be true for Giallo Paglierino. I wouldn't trust that the color is accurately reproduced on monitor screen or printed on paper. Have a look at Don's 102 Spider when it was auctioned off here -- I bet the color looked better in real life than in the pictures.

The big decision you have to make is whether or not to sacrifice originality for a personal preference. The quote below is from the AROC National Concours manual (see PDF here):
Look at the overall appearance while inspecting for originality/correctness of color. Judges should also deduct for non-period correct paint colors and finishes such as pearl effects, metallics, etc. on car models and years where this would not have come from the factory.
Both, underbody and engine compartment in body color and incorrect color (Rubino Scuro and Bluette) would give deductions (and may have implications with FIVA classifications, should that be sought). Then again, my friend's medium metallic Spider (not a factory option but an Alfa color offered in period on other cars) did not get the Certificato d'Oro for that very reason (a minimum of 95 points is required and incorrect paint automatically results in a deduction of 5-7 points) but won People's Choice Award at the 2009 AROC convention in Portland.

My suggestion would be to stay with originality all the way through because (a) I think it will lead to greater long-term value, (b) there are already enough molested cars, and (c -- and maybe most importantly), the color may actually grow on you once you see the car painted.
 

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I would like to know why AROC judges deducted that many points for the paint. The quote you provided allowed for "period correct" colors and there has been some discussion years ago that custom colors were available by special order on the 2600. This especially rubs against the portion of the quote: "where this would not have come from the factory."

I'm not sure a period-appropriate, Alfa-appropriate paint color could in any way be considered as a "molestation" of an otherwise fine vehicle.

One also should reflect on whether "maximum resale value" is your #1 priority. Personally, I'm a bit weary of money being a driving force (excuse the pun) of collecting and restoring, as I am not so sure collecting awards and certificates is of paramount importance to most enthusiasts either.

I return to my RX: take it slow, find what you like, due reasonable diligence on the period appropriateness of a color, and then do everything with an eye towards what will make you happy.
 

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Ask touring63, or look at his posts. The 2600s he restores, and he has done many, always look stunning.

Pete
 

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there has been some discussion years ago that custom colors were available by special order on the 2600.
That's a rumor I have never seen any supporting evidence of -- not even when I looked at the records in the archive myself.

Admittedly, if such special orders existed, they may have been such rare cases that they did not stand out in the ledgers (although I was scanning for special notes on cars that would have indicated treatment from stock).

Chances are, that special colors may have been supplied by dealers who made the sale and repainted a car based om customers wishes -- at which point a discrepancy starts to exist between the records in the factory and the actual color of the car.
 

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Pjotr,

When I undertook the restoration of my most recent 2000, cn 1488, I suspected the color to be Grigio Biacca. It had been repainted red at some point, but I could see peeled paint revealing a lighter color. My other 102, cn 00072, was originally painted in Grigio Biacca, and I LOVE IT. We computer matched unblemished sections of the paint, and what resulted is a light cream that you'd like to take a bath in. Accompanied. I added a saddle color leather interior, and have observed that women all want to sit in it, and start looking hopefully in the direction of their husbands, or rich lovers.

Anyway, when I got the Centro Doc result telling me that 1488 was Giallo Paglierino, my curiosity was piqued. Again, we were able to find hidden areas that had remained untouched since its original paint, and discovered a positively electric color. We knew the car had been special ordered by an American living in Europe, and it was delivered originally with red wool carpets, and we believe, a red leather interior. So that's what we copied.

So far, everyone that has seen the car remarked on its presence. NOT dull, NOT ugly. However, one has to accept that the Italians really are the masters of design in general and color specifically. Americans tend to be conservative, and we won't even mention the Germans and English in that regard.

So - based purely on my own recent experience, I'd vote to retain the original color. Did Centro tell you the color of the original interior?

As Ruedi said, some colors don't explode off the screen the way they do in person. Giallo Paglierno has just the right tint of green in it, like newly mowed hay, still fresh on the ground.

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Waiting to drive up to the podium at the 2019 Concorso Italiano to accept the award for "Best of Marque".

1628191
 

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I understand exactly where your coming from. I debated for over six months as to what colour to paint my car. A deep red or midnight blue or silver birch I swapped and changed my mind so often it became ridiculous! My car was originally white, but I didnt want a white car. In the end I went for a deep red similar to the Alfas from the 30's and 40's, this was also based on my choice of Borrani wheels. If originality and point scoring is your thing, keep it the original colour, if not paint it any colour you like it's your car.⁸
20190329_044155.jpg
 

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Hi Pieter,
This assumes your not going to get it judged and scored....
The different Carrozzeria's back then treated the engine compartment/trunk and underside to their own preferences....Touring of course preferring black for the engine, trunk, underside and dash. I've seen variations of this theme on Touring cars (including body colored dash), and other than the body colored dash car, they were all attractive and didn't seem "wrong!" - If I didn't own one I wouldn't have noticed. So do it to your taste as its your car-understand that if your going to drive your car those original finishes are easier to maintain (the black in the engine hides stains and the undercoat on the bottom protects/hides chips in the wheel wells ect) Color change to another stock color or attractive period correct color like the two you mention don't seem to be a big deal, and in some cases can help with resale. The car is your canvass.

As to your cars original color, I understand your issue with the yellow. My other passion is Triumph cars and they had a similar color called Jasmine, and the poor dudes who have this color on their car at the British shows inevitably hear "its the color of piss!" Sorry to be crude, but this basis actual overhearing this at shows over the years. Seems like most Jasmine cars undergo a color change when restored.

Exciting times for you, Best of luck with your choices!
 

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It's a very sensitive subject.
choosing the right colour for the Alfa 2600 Touring Spider.
as we all know, tastes differ just as much as they do with women.
that is why there is no right or wrong here.
right is when someone wants a concourse car, an original colour is a premise.
I have restored a lot of Alfa's so far and among them 11x 2000/2600 Touring Spider.
I also had to give in to the customers' wishes. Among other things a green one.
I was not happy at the beginning. Then I revised my opinion.
especially original red is not really beautiful.
It should express more power and dynamic for my taste in the direction of cherry.
the important thing is that everyone should be happy with the sight of the color. No matter if original or special.
here is a small extract of pictures to feel the different charisma of Colors
Bernhard

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)
 

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here are some more either before the restoration example of the yellow or other not my projects.
from the Internet pictures only as a color example.
 

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Touring63 makes an elegant and effective case for the careful deliberation of a color choice. I would note that the photos make to me an equally compelling case for wire-style wheels strictly from a design and ornamentation perspective. The 2000/2600 is rather slab-sided, presenting a large 2 dimensional plane to the eye when viewed from the side. Factory wheel caps do nothing to alter that impression. Wire wheels provide 2 exclamation points to excite the viewers perception of elegance.

While Borrani wires are absolutely the best (and the only choice for purists), Dayton wire wheels are quite impressive.

So, as the example in green may demonstrate an "off" color from the OEM palette. the car certainly presents extremely well with the wire wheels.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Borrani's will be mounted to the car.
but if I ask you I want to have the highest value possible, what would be the recommondation then?
 

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my next touring-spider projects is in restoration progress.
one medium blue with brown leather and wire wheels.

i think the the second paint same ice-blue as my both very earley austin Healey 100 and Jaguar E.
Inside with chocolate brown or oxblood red leather.

these two pictures are only as an example for the very exquisite colour
 

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Pjotr,

“Highest value?”

Do you mean future sale value? If that is your goal, a strict recreation of original is necessary.

The accumulated wisdom in the auction business is that “striking and unusual” colors and combinations are more desirable and valued than more ordinary and mundane.

Alfas have a long tradition of “striking and unusual colors and combinations”.

Thus, if you are fortunate to have an Alfa that was delivered new with “striking and unusual”, then that is the highest value to recreate.

I ask again, what was your original interior color?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Pjotr,

“Highest value?”

Do you mean future sale value? If that is your goal, a strict recreation of original is necessary.

The accumulated wisdom in the auction business is that “striking and unusual” colors and combinations are more desirable and valued than more ordinary and mundane.

Alfas have a long tradition of “striking and unusual colors and combinations”.

Thus, if you are fortunate to have an Alfa that was delivered new with “striking and unusual”, then that is the highest value to recreate.

I ask again, what was your original interior color?
Alfa Historica could not give me the details of the interior but my old seats are black leather. And because the bodywork is done so beautiful, that I tend to give the motor compartment and bottomside the choosen color!
So Dan says, original color gives you the highest value?
Regards Pieter
 

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Not to digress, but on the topic of Italian car colors: I visited the Getty Villa (art museum) shortly before lockdown, and they had show of stuff that's been recently dug out of Pompeii and Herculeneum. Looking at the friezes, mosaics, enamel work, etc., I was struck that Italians have been using the same palette for millennia. Why mess with a good thing?
 

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Pieter...

I may have misunderstood your post, but....

Whatever exterior color you choose, the underbody, wheel wells, engine bay, trunk, and interior were all originally black. Mostly a “satin” black, although most of the trunks I’ve seen have a sort of texture, and the dash should be “eggshell” black.
 

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@DPeterson3: On all 2600 Spiders, the dashboard was covered in vinyl (but S1 and S2 dashboards are slightly different).

I agree that underbody, engine compartment, trunk and passenger space were chassis black. In fact, I believe the whole raw bodies may have been painted black (after filler/primer was applied before final exterior paint). I don't believe that different colors or finishes were used for engine compartment, underbody, etc, but that they may have aged differently due to various factors such UV exposure, heat, wind and/or dust abrasion, etc. There is also clear evidence that the inside of most trunk lids, and probably trunk interiors and underbodies may have received a coat of rubberized undercoating as well.

As for the interior, believe Giallo Paglierino cars had red interior from the factory (see sample of an original S1 Spider below) but some may have been black. Unfortunately, the Archivio Storico records contain no information about interior colors on 2600 Spiders.

@Pjotr: As stated above, I think the most long-term value is achieved by keeping the car as original as possible (in fact, I believe some collectors are willing to pay a premium for that). That doesn't mean cars painted in any other color may attract buyers willing to pay a premium in the short term -- just because they happen to fall in love with a specific (non-original) color combination and/or appearance.

That being said -- and while I pontificate originality -- my car isn't original, either. Previous owners have made changes, and I believe that if a car had modifications for more than half of its life, these modifications should be kept as a document of the car's history. So, in many ways, this moves the question to what car was there to begin with -- an original car or a modified car? -- and what to do with it.

There is always some originality lost with a restoration -- which, in most cases, should be called a "rebuild" rather than a "restoration" (imagine the Mona Lisa being "restored" the way we restore cars -- the destruction of original work would be so severe that there is no real value left). Still, I believe one cannot go wrong by rebuilding back to as original as possible, and sometimes, what trade-offs can or should be made are a very personal choice -- including whether or not panel fit, gaps and smoothness of paint are actually the same or much better than when the cars left the factory. Today's quality standards for "acceptable" or "good" quality are much, much higher than 60 years ago.

In any case, I've seen other cars where owners or restorers made choices that showed the great artistry of the panel beaters that did the bodywork. In all of these cases, subsequent owners found these choices either to be "wrong" or "tasteless". Look at the bodywork Bernhard shows on his Flickr page here. I can imagine it must be breaking his heart every single time primer and paint is applied over his work in such outstanding quality -- but then again, this is one of the traits of great restorers and craftsmen: Their persona and professional pride mandates that things are done well (or "right") even where people cannot see them or don't pay attention to, and they have no problem with the fact that their work is covered. Strangely, knowledgeable people often still will see and/or sense the difference such quality made, even if it is invisible or hard to see.

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