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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Great forum. I'm hoping there is someone out there that can help me get my car running. I bought a 1988 Spider Veloce last November. I drove it 1.5 hours home. I did brakes and suspension work over the winter. In the spring it wouldn't start. There is no power getting to the fuel pump. The fuel pump does work when I apply power to it. I dug into the electrical workings of the car and found a bunch of modifications that I do not understand. See attached photos. Does anyone know what the 'cipro' box is for behind the drivers seat? It's no longer connected. Should there be 2 of them? Do any of the modifications make sense to anyone? Possibly for anti-theft? Any help would be very much appreciated.

Thanks,
Lee
 

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Since it was working and now not working and you have not worked in the electrical area I would start with the obvious fuse and relay problem. Extended down time especially if the battery is still hooked cause corrosion on electrical fittings. Email "papajam" for a electrical diagram. It can only help. The fitting on the left side behind the driver seat is for the optional hardtop wiring. I have done a 87 Spider which has 2 computer boxes...one under the parcel shelf behind passenger seat is the Jetronic fuel system controller. The other is in the right side wall behind the passenger seat is the Bosch electronics controller. Sorry I am not more help.
Cheers, Jon"
 

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Lee, from your photos, it looks like you have several different issues here.

First and last photo would lead me to believe that someone had installed an aftermarket alarm or anti theft system. It may have been removed, or it may still be there and the reason your car won't start. Some of these systems may be left off, but automatically arm themselves if the battery goes very low, dead, or gets disconnected.

Your automatic seat belts probably don't work, or have been replaced with normal belts. The motor you show being disconnected runs the power track for the seat belt. I believe the Cipro boxes you mention and show are the control boxes for the automatic belts. There should be 2, one for each seat belt. If they've been disconnected and the belts have been replaced with normal ones, these control boxes and motors would no longer be used or needed. However, if they're not being used, someone may have used them as a power supply or source for something else. For example, an aftermarket sound system, or extra lighting. I could be wrong, but from what I recall, 1988 was about the only year these automatic seat belts were used. I don't remember if it was due to the problems with them, or if people just didn't like them, but their use was very brief.

Hope this helps. If it is an anti theft or alarm system, it's easy to remove it and return your car to stock condition. Just disconnect everything wherever you see it spliced. Be careful and do one part at a time, making sure you splice any of the original wires back together as they were originally. Make sure you match both the color codes of the wires and the size of the wires.
 

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I had similar problem ! THANKS to advice on this forum I rectified it. Under the parcel shelf by the relays and control box is an inline fuse holder,about the size of a ball point pen with a ceramic bullet fuse,mine was fried. I switched it out with a new blade fuse holder and it starts every time !
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Jon (not2old4toys). I did get the color wiring diagrams from papjam. They’ve been very helpful. I’ve been struggling to find the automatic seat belt on them. It may be my unfamiliarity with it. I’ve check all the fuses that I could find. No issues there. So that’s a hardtop wiring connection. Good to know. I don’t have to worry about what’s missing now. Every little bit helps.

Thanks OldFotoMan. It makes sense that the cipro boxes are for the automatic seat belts. They are no longer working and normal belts have been installed. Also, an aftermarket sound system was installed, poorly. I have removed most of it. What concerns me is the possibility of an anti-theft device. Since I now know more, I will attempt to restore the electronics to stock condition, 1 step at a time. Thanks again for your help. I will work on it again this weekend.

Thanks quartrsawn. I check that fuse and it seems fine. Maybe I should change it anyway to avoid a future problem.

With this forum’s help, I may be driving the car before the summer is over. I really appreciate the help.
 

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Lee, I have the same wiring splices or modifications at one of the Cipro boxes on my '88 Veloce. I've seen it on several others also. I never took the time to track it down or figure out just what it was for, but I would guess that since it seems to be common on '88 spiders, it may be some type of factory authorized modification or change. If anyone knows for certain what this was for, please let us all know. I spent over 40 years as a dealer in sport cars and had many Alfas over the years. Throughout the late '60s, the '70s, and into the '80s, I can tell you that most sport or imported cars with radios or AC, had units that were installed by the importer or dealer. They were pre-wired by the factory as much as possible, and most units were sold through the importers or distributors, so they were considered factory. This could account for the same type of modifications or changes on so many different cars being the same. I can also tell you from experience that I have personally removed literally several hundred of these aftermarket anti-theft or alarm systems. They are fairly easy if you're careful. Just look at what was cut or spliced into, and when you match it back up to the original, make sure you match the color and size. For example, red wire with black tracer to another of the same, but only if they are both the same wire gauge. So don't match a 14 gauge to a 10 gauge even though they may be the same colors. Very seldom you may find a system that splits or separates them at a factory junction where they might lead in one way and come out differently. That's where the wiring diagram will be very helpful. This forum is great at helping people, so please pass along what you find and save someone else some time and trouble.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
OldFotoMan,

More great information from you! If the blue connectors/splices are factory installed, I will keep them. I think my questions for behind the seat are answered for now. I won't make any changes there. But it would be good to know why there is a relay sliced into the cipro box wiring harness. I do have A/C and a radio.

For under the dash, I will leave the blue connector/splice there since it could be from the factory. There is an interesting connection of 2 different color wires in the back of the fuse box (Green/Black to Red/White). The connector looks factory installed (much better that the radio and ignition splices I've seen). But that goes against what you were saying about matching same color and size wires. Can't seem to find it on the wiring diagram. The 2 loose/disconnected wires have me wondering as well.

As far as the fuel pump goes, I will look for bad grounds, fuses or cut wires.

Thanks again for you advice and guidance on this project I have.
Lee
 

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If your car still has the 'bullet' in-line fuel pump fuse near the computer, replace it. The bullet type fuses can somehow look OK but fail to allow electrons to flow. IF possible, use the fuses with a brass strip instead of an aluminum strip. The brass versions seem to last longer. Actually, especially for the fuel pump fuse I suggest replacing the fuse holder so you can use a modern blade type fuse. The correct rating is 8 amps.
 

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The fuel pump relay does not look correct. Post a couple of good pictures of the area behind the passenger seat. Everything behind the drivers has nothing to do with the fuel system. My guess would be that you have corrosion on one the the connectors the the fuel pump wire goes through.

Alfa never made or designed a new wiring harness for the spider. They just kept adding wires. So in 71 the fuel pump wire left the fuse box and went back to the fuel pump. They then added a inertia switch, intank pump, etc. Alfa just kept adding wire. So by the mid 80's the fuel pump loops completely around the car before getting to the fuel pump. I would pull the fuel pump relay and jump it at the relay connector and see if it works.
 

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I agree with Jim, forget all that cipro passive seatbelt stuff back there...it is nothing to do with your fuel pump problem:

"There is no power getting to the fuel pump. The fuel pump does work when I apply power to it."

The fuel relay you have does not look like the correct bosch type, but may be a KAE or similar, which works, but can also be troublesome.

Anyway pull off the relay from the socket and jumper pin #30 & #87
does the car start now?
fuel relay stuff:
http://www.alfabb.com/bb/forums/1069165-post5.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks spiderserie4! This is great information. I will be doing these tests this weekend.
 

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I agree with the others that the Cipro and seat belt system has nothing to do with the fuel pump problem. But I think Lee and I are both curious if anyone knows what the spliced in wires were for. I have the identical ones on my car also and have seen it on several other '88 spiders; so I'm thinking it must have been a modification designed and authorized by Alfa. If Lee isn't curious, I still am, so please, if anyone knows what these were spliced in for, share the info with me.
As for the fuel pump issue, you all could certainly be correct about the fuses or relays. However, I still believe that the photos look like it has had an aftermarket anti theft system installed. If it has not been removed or bypassed properly, it could be causing the problem. Many of these systems were designed to keep the cars from running. Most of them did this by eliminating the spark or the fuel. The easiest ways to keep it from running. They spliced their controls into the wiring to the coil or the fuel pump, and unless the system was turned off properly, or removed, the cars would not run. I have removed hundreds of these in the past 40 years; so my thought would be to be sure that any anti theft system has been removed properly and that the wiring is back to the factory original design. Then if it still has no power to the fuel pump, check out the fuses and relays, etc. But if it still has an anti theft system, all of the checking of these other things isn't going to do much good, because something may be deliberately cutting off the power to the pump.
I certainly could be wrong, but 40 years in the car business has taught me that in the vast majority of cases, when they look like this under the dash and have that hidden micro switch, there is (or was) an anti theft system installed. And it may, or may not, still be active; or may not have been removed correctly.
As I said originally, I think you have several different issues going on here. And if there are different issues, I think the logical way to go about things, or the best order to do them in, would first be make sure the wiring system is configured in the manner that it came from the factory. Once you have it back to the original wiring system (at least closely matching the diagram), you have a starting point to work on the other issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
OK. I've done more investigation and testing. Power is getting to both fuel pumps.

Originally, I disconnected the line after the fuel filter and put it in a gas can (trying to remove old gas). No gas was going in the can when I turned the key. Then, concerned about the electricity and gas mix, I reconnected the fuel line and applied power to the pump. The pump tuned and I assumed it worked. And, I assumed it wasn't getting power when I tried to start it.

Today, I checked the fuel pump relay, heard/felt a click when the ignition went to the 'on' position, and another in the 'start' position. Then I attached the volt meter to fuel pump. It was getting power when I tried to start the car. The in-tank fuel pump was as well. I disconnected the line to the external fuel pump (from the tank) and applied power to the tank pump. Gas came out. So, now I know, my inexperience lead me to believe the fuel pump was not getting power when it just didn't work anymore, made noise but didn't pump. I took it out and tested it. It's not pumping. I'm not sure why it would work in December and not work in May. I'm also not sure why it makes noise, like it turning, and not pumping. I see a new pump cost about $130. Does anyone recommend using a used pump?

The good news is that since I removed the spliced-in relay between the ignition to the starter, I've have not issues with the starter not getting power.

The car isn't running yet but thanks for everyone who gave advice. You gave me the confidence to continue looking and not tow it to a specialist. Let's hope the new fuel pump is all that is required.

Thanks again,
Lee
 

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You might already know this. But the fuel pump get power for a second when you turn the key on. After that it only gets power in the start position. When engine starts the fuel pump relay gets a signal that keeps it running. If car stalls out fuel pump quits working.

Also on the passive seat belt system. There were not any approved modifications by Alfa for the system.
 
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