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My 79 spider which I bought recently but have only driven sparingly idles fast for the first 2-3 miles. Is this normal, I do not always need the chock to start the car but it idles fast regardless.
It shifts fine no syncros issues but it is sloppy, and ideals on a remedy.
 

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For the fast idle, I can tell you that the Bosch L-Jet EFI models are supposed to idle a bit faster than normal upon cold-start. If you have carburetors (which I am inferring from your comment about the choke) then I would expect the high-idle to be linked to the choke but I can't speak to that with any authority, becuase all the US-spec models had some form of injection from very early on (maybe even from day one).

As to the sloppy shifter, are you sure the "slop" isn't due to bad motor / transmission mounts? If it is just the shift ACTION that is sloppy, I couldn't tell you how to fix that. I have driven a lot of cars with manual transmissions in my day. The absolute best shifter I think I ever felt was in an early Acura I had a long time ago, but my spider is no slouch. The shift action is not what I would call "sloppy" but it can be "notchy" at times and my synchros are not perfect, either. I can't complain, though. I would expect a car this old to have a bit of play and perhaps a cranky synchro from time to time. I don't drive my spider like a street racer - it's not that kind of car to me - but I never drove one when they were newer...so I have no perspective on the subject. Taken as it is, I'd say the shift action is pretty darn good, and the only "slop" I can detect is certainly attributable to wear and tear. If there is, indeed, something wrong with your car then the only way to fix it is to probably re-build / replace stuff. I'd have a look at the motor and transmission mounts, though.
 

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you have a '79, came stock with SPICA injection, the "choke" handle is actually a hand throttle, sound like the SPICA FI needs some adjustment but the good news is, your thermosatatic actuator maybe working. if weber conversion, that is a different story.

shifting maybe a motor mount and or trans mount problem, but do a search, could be the shifter is loose, improperly installed in the top of the trans.
 
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