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Discussion Starter #1
I recently bought a chassis stiffener from IAP. While they list the stiffener as a viable option for my car, when I got the unit and held it up under the car it looks as if there is no way this works on cars with floor mounted pedals. The long bar that runs from the front wheel well back to the trailing arm point looks like it would have to go directly through where the master cylinder is mounted. I haven't even looked at what issues there might be with the cross members! Has anyone else ever installed one of these on a duetto type spider with the floor pedals? I guess if it really won't work I could use it as a template to have a custom stiffener fabricated, but I imagine that may get pricey! Thoughts or advice welcome!
 

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..IAP should have told you it would not fit..kind of wondering why they even sold it to you..you did tell them you have a duetto.if so, they made a mistake, not you.
 

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I have one on my Duetto (with floor mounted pedals). It's a little too cold to go crawling underneath right now to look, but I think you are positioning the stiffener on the inside of the inner frame rails while it actually goes on the outside. Good luck with the assembly! It's a pain in the butt, but it does fit!
Mike
 

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I think you are positioning the stiffener on the inside of the inner frame rails while it actually goes on the outside. Mike
Hmm...sounds like it won't fit a '69 since the clutch master is located on the outside of the frame rail for that year only. I believe Pogcarr's is a '69 roundtail. Dang!
 

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Just wondering,

did you ever get the chassis stiffener to fit? I have a 69 roundtail too, and while it feels pretty tight, I can help but be imressed with all the positive comments on chassis stiffeners. ANyone who has a Kamm tail wth a chassis stiffener compared it to a roundtail car? I had heard that later Kamm tail cars were much worse with the cowl shake than roundtails... Is a chassis stiffener likely to add as much in these older cars?

thanks
 

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What is "cowl shake"?
The cowl is the top front part of the car, in front of the windshield, and in front of the dash. When one goes over bumps, like over rail road tracks, the top area in front of the instrument panel shakes and rattles very badly. The stiffener corrects this.

Best regards,
 

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I do not have the chassis stiffener on my car(1969SV), but am interested in hearing the impressions from those that do have them.

In the search for my car I came across two others that had the IAP chassis stiffener in 1969 spiders, so I believe they either do fit or can be made to fit. One of the sellers that hard the stiffener said there was a night and day difference in the body flex with the stiffener...but he was trying to sell the car as well.
 

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I've had one of the chassis stiffeners on my '67 for some time now. It clears the foot pedals okay but the front cross bar is a no-go, at least with a non-stock exhaust. The instructions I got with the stiffener said the use of the cross bars were optional and did not contribute that much to the stiffener. The main advantage comes from tiening the steering box/idler box to the suspension pivots in the back. The advertisements I've seen for the new stiffeners have two options for the front cross bar that would seem to solve this problem. As for the '69 Duetto/GTV, the only issue seems to be the actuating mechanism for the hydro. clutch. I have a 2 liter engine and I'm in the process of trying to convert to this system so as to better clear the race headers (Sperry and GTA types). There is pently of room for the hydro. master cylendar to mount to the outside of the "frame rail" (as stock) and for the hydro. lines. The question for me so far is how to get the arm that comes out of the left side of the pedal box through the fender panel and the front driver's side chassis stiffener plate. Looks like there might be enough room to drill a hole for the clutch arm to come through the panel and plate but whether there is enough room for the lever arm to swing back and forth to operate the rod that goes to the clutch master cylendar remains to be seen.

Randy Harris
'62 & '67 Spiders
'78 Sport Sedan

PS: WARNING. I've seen Duettos with cracked rocker panels caused by using stiff springs and stiff sidewall tires. I don't know if rust or metal fatigue had anything to do with it but it happened. I've been time trialing/racing my '67 for several years on Alan Ward springs and Goodyear race tires and the original rockers are doing fine.
 

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The stiffener makes a huge difference. I would suggest that those looking for opinions do a search, and you should find many recommending the stiffener.

The chassis stiffener sold by IAP, Centerline, etc. is the one designed by Don Ereminas. He designed these back in '70s, and still supplies all the outfits that offer one (IAP, Centerline, etc.). There is no one else who makes stiffeners. There are two versions. One is the standard length, for use with the OEM exhaust, and the other is a longer version, for use with aftermarket headers. Don is semi-retired, but he still sells his products directly or through the well known suppliers. His number is 1-800-253-2468 and his web site is Alfa Romeo, Parts, Service, Harrington, CT.

Best regards,
 

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The new stiffeners may well come with such a hole, it would be a very good idea that would have little or no impact on the structural strength of the unit. However, I've had mine in the car for over 10 years and mine is probably too old to have had such an such an upgrade. If anyone has a newer stiffener with this hole (or has added one on their own) I would appreciate knowing how big a hole was used and where it was located on the stiffener such that I could duplicate it on mine.

NOTE: I got mine through Erminas way-back-when. It was shipped to me by the maker from somewhere in the Pacific northwest (Portland? Seattle?). Lately, I called Erminas for lightened stock ratio gears and to see if I could adapt the later model forward-reaching cross brace to my unit. I've left phone messages for them but have received no replys. I do not think they are still in business.
 

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Ereminas is still in business. One of my friends ordered his stiffener from Don two weeks ago. As I mentioned however, Don is semi-retired, but he should still get back to you...

Best regards,
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well, having looked further into installing this stiffener, I can say definitively that they do NOT fit early spiders with floor mounted pedals. I can modify the stiffener to work, by cutting and welding in a stiffener rail outboard of where the current rail is, but that sort defeats the purpose of having purchased a unit. All in all, I am disappointed in IAP for even selling me this unit; they should know better.
 

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Well, having looked further into installing this stiffener, I can say definitively that they do NOT fit early spiders with floor mounted pedals. .

Is the problem with clearing the clutch master cylinder? If so, they'll probably work with everything except the '69 with the floor mounted pedals and hyd. clutch. I'm pretty sure a friend of mine installed one on his '67 Duetto with floor mounted pedals and mech. clutch. Maybe you'd be interested in working a trade for that 1750 engine you were interested in?
 

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Well, having looked further into installing this stiffener, I can say definitively that they do NOT fit early spiders with floor mounted pedals. I can modify the stiffener to work, by cutting and welding in a stiffener rail outboard of where the current rail is, but that sort defeats the purpose of having purchased a unit. All in all, I am disappointed in IAP for even selling me this unit; they should know better.
Give Don Ereminas a call (1-800-253-2468)... He may have a suggestion...

When I first installed a stiffener, and then switched the manifold for headers, the front cross bar wouldn't fit anymore. (This is in the days before they offered the longer stiffener version.) We had to adapt the front to move the bar forward, and only used one bolt one each side to secure it, but it still worked great...

Best regards,
 

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DId you ever find out if the stiffener will work on your car? I have a 69 and would really like one. I spoke with Don, and he says that over many years he is sure that he has sold them for 69's although he didn't discount that no one ever told him it didn't fit. I'm still willing to give it a go though, because he seems like he'd be quite helpful at suggesting modifications. Are you returning your product to centerline? If not, I might try to make a deal with you...
 

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I have just about completed the conversion of my '67 Duetto to the later floor mounted hydraulic pedal system. The stiffener on my car clears the master cylinder and the actuating arm that come through the inner fender (just barely clears-but it clears). Does your master extend below the box section its mounted to? If it does not you should have adequate clearance.

As an aside, I would really hesitate to do this conversion without using a chassis stiffener. I cut the necessary hole in the inner fender for the acutating arm and expected to find an empty space between the inner and outer side of this inner fender panel. SURPRISE! I ended up cutting through several inner reinforcements. Thankfully, the 1/4" steel plate of the stiffener makes up for this.

Randy Harris
 

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Don't mean to hijack thread but wondering if installing a header version on OEM setup in anticipation of future header upgrade is OK. Current OEM but I would like to go with the header when funds allow.
 

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Way back when, I actually talked to the guy who designed and built these stiffeners and he said that the crossbars were really optional. The VAST majority of the benefit came from tieing the steering box/idler box to the rear suspension's forward mounting pivot. I've been racing and time trialing mine w/o the front crossbar and it has been great.

As an addendum to my earlier post about the clutch master cylinder clearance on the '69s. I did a double check on it this weekend and my master sticks down below the bottom of the box section where it is mounted to the chassis. It sticks down over half an inch and still has almost an inch clearance between the stiffener and the master.

Randy Harris
'67 & '62 Spiders
'78 Sport Sedan
 
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