Yes, twice before, apparently Conrero fitted them to engines he tuned, but I'd guess that he only started fitting them late into his tuning career once he'd made a name for himself, so quite rare today.
This is the other cap that was fitted by period preperatore, I've seen this one on two engines already. I don't know which came first.
In the eighties, my brother and I once drove a Triumph Spitfire during a late evening trip at high speed over the German highway.
In that period, the German highway was the only remaining 'safe' place for checking the performance of a car or for making a quick drive, ... 'safe' at least against speeding tickets !
When taking a 5 minutes brake on a parking place for stretching our legs, we opened the engine compartment to check everything and we saw that the casted exhaust manifold was fire-red of the heat. Maybe the fine-tuning of the ignition was not perfect although the car performed amazingly good. In any case it looked very scary in the dark.
I wonder what would happen if crankcase gases were lead to such a red manifold ?
So, is the direction of that pipe original or was leading carter fumes towards a hot exhaust manifold done intentionally by Conrero to get rid of the oil fumes ?
I've seen Veloce exhaust manifolds glowing dull red in the dark, you wouldn't notice it in daylight. (Don't ask me why I was lifting the bonnet in the middle of the night. Mis-spent youth.)
Greig, you didn't make it clear - is that oil filler extension/breather setup reported to be by Conrero, or another preparatore? I can't think of any good reason for pointing the breather at the exhaust manifold, and I don't readily believe Conrero did it. An oil breather catch tank was a common competition regs requirement, and possibly this setup was designed for that purpose and at a later date someone decided on this - er - intriguing modification. What do you think?
As you see the pictures of that Veloce engine in my post #2 where I said it was fitted by preperatore - no idea which one and I don't know if that cap was specific to one tuner or perhaps an item available to everyone.
I have seen a picture of another engine with the same cap + pipe - that's all I know about it, but I agree that directing the fumes towards the exhaust isn't a great idea
So the oil filler extension with breather is not claimed to be Conrero's work. Although I think it's a bad idea, the fact that the item looks like it's manufactured and not a home-made bodge makes me wonder what it's for. Do you think it might be to do with oil drips on your garage floor? The stock breather on the back of the crankcase discharges fumes and oil drips into the airflow under the car, and they accumulate in the area of the transmission tunnel. Then they drip off when you're parked overnight. This ingenious (?) device means the drips are burnt off as you drive along. What do you think?
I have seen one once before on a Conrero prepped 750 Race car I bought at auction in 1983 in Spokane. The whole motor was very prepared including a polished crank and rods, Magnesium sump, and air plenum, with the Conrero window and air horns.
I should have kept it but I sold it 48 hours later. I still know where it is. The Oil cap is still with it.