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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone, excited to be a new Alfa owner and true participant!

I recently acquired a US spec '69 Spider with SPICA and Jaeger gauges. When I fill up, the fuel gauge shows full, but then quickly bounces from E to F intermittently. After a bit of gas is used, it just sits at Empty. I took the sender unit out and the connections look fine. If I take off one of the leads and ground it, the gauge shows full. So I believe the gauge is fine. Looking at the sender, it appears to be the Classic Alfa FL030 (Sorry I cannot put links in the thread yet)

Classic Alfa say that this sender unit can work for my car however have this note: "For Spica fuel injected cars with bottom-feed fuel tanks, modify sending unit by blocking off feed tube."

My question is, has anyone modified one of these? I'm not sure what avenue to take to block it off. Being that it will be sitting in fuel, I don't want whatever I block the bottom tube off with to drop off, or worse, breakdown in the fuel. I'd love to get this working, but perhaps I should just breakdown and purchase the one that they say is correct for my car, it isn't that much money. But always trying to fix rather then replace.

Appreciate anyone's thoughts on the matter!

Ingo
 

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If I take off one of the leads and ground it, the gauge shows full. So I believe the gauge is fine.
I agree - your gauge probably is OK - the senders fail more frequently.

How new does this sender look? Are you saying that you bought it recently from Classic Alfa? Or that it's older, but looks like what CA sells as p/n FL030?

These senders have a wiper connected to the float that contacts a coiled resistor. Once the wiper and pivot become worn, it only contacts intermittently, causing the gauge needle to bounce around. You can take it apart and fiddle with it, which might fix things (for awhile). But if it's old, I'd just replace it.

Classic Alfa say that this sender unit can work for my car however have this note: "For Spica fuel injected cars with bottom-feed fuel tanks, modify sending unit by blocking off feed tube." .... Being that it will be sitting in fuel, I don't want whatever I block the bottom tube off with to drop off, or worse, breakdown in the fuel.
I think they mean you should block the tube outside the tank - that is, at the top - so fuel can't slosh out or evaporate. Your stopper doesn't need to be down in the fuel.
 

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Your gauge probably is OK - the senders fail more frequently.

How new does this sender look? Are you saying that you bought it recently from Classic Alfa? Or that it looks like what they sell as p/n FL030?

These senders have a wiper connected to the float that contacts a coiled resistor. Once the wiper and pivot become worn, it only contacts intermittently, causing the gauge needle to bounce around. You can take it apart and fiddle with it, which might fix things (for awhile). But if it's old, I'd just replace it.



I think they mean you should block the tube outside the tank - that is, at the top - so fuel can't slosh out or evaporate. Your block doesn't need to be down in the fuel.
Hi @Alfajay, thanks for the fast response. I did not purchase the sender. It looks exactly like the one from the Classic Alfa I pointed out. This car was restored, but has sat in a garage for the past 5 years. I took the sender out and checked for corrosion and fitment of the contacts. Everything looked really good.

Not sure what I could block off on the top. I need to back home and look in the garage.
 

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I took the sender out and checked for corrosion and fitment of the contacts. Everything looked really good.
When you say "contacts" do you mean the connections to the car's wiring harness, or the wiper & coil I referred to in post #2? Is the sending unit well grounded? I always run a dedicated ground wire from somewhere on the body to one of the six screws that attaches the sender to the tank.

Not sure what I could block off on the top. I need to back home and look in the garage.
What I usually do is take a piece of steel/brass/aluminum rod the same diameter as the fuel outlet (probably 5/16" or 8mm) and cut it about 1/2" long. Then insert it into a section of flexible fuel line, with the other end of the fuel line on the sender outlet (or whatever I'm blocking). Add two hose clamps and you're done.

One problem: From your photo, it appears that the outlet from the fuel sender points up vertically. So my plug + hose might stick into the trunk mat. You might need to clamp a 90 degree elbow to that vertical outlet and then attach the plug to that.

Or just use something like the caps pictured below, held on with a hose clamp or tie wrap. I'm guessing that's what gprocket is referring to in post #5:

 

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Thanks for all the thoughts guys. I meant wiper and contact. I went home and opened it up again.

There is no tube on the top, I thought they meant the open tube at the bottom.

I already put the extra ground to the body when I first tried to diagnose it.

There is a small amount of fuel in the float. It doesn’t seem like that much to make it go all the way to empty and nothing in between.
 

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