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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So I've been registered on the AlfaBB since 2006... Its about time I introduce my Giulietta (and myself).

Hi I'm Ron and I've owned my 1959 Giulietta Sprint from 4/22/1975 (40 yrs and counting). I purchased it when I was 19, from a high school friend. So I have knowledge of the previous ownership back to about 1973.


Upper Body: *6510520* [body number Bertone used]

Autotelaio (VIN): AR1493*20830* [passenger side firewall]

Engine Number: AR00102*29809* [750b motor replaced with 101 Series]



Here is the most recent photo I have from Aug. 1st.


I'll add more as I have time...
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Funny Story

This summer I put my Sprint back on the road after more than 7 years sitting... It was sidelined by bad brakes (which have been recently repaired).

So, the weather has been great in the PNW and I've been driving the Alfa every opportunity I have. After one recent outing, I noticed a Mercedes SUV following me. First thing I'm thinking is 'Did I do something to make the SUV driver angry???'. I can't think of any foul on my part. Meanwhile the Mercedes is still following closely... hmmm.... lets put some distance between us... drop to 3rd and give it some throttle. But the Mercedes is keeping up and follows me to my driveway and I'm not liking this... I approach the driver to ask if I can help.

The driver hops out and says... "Hey do you want to sell that Giulietta?"

Now in my forty years of ownership I heard this about 100 times... and in 99 of those it typically goes " Hey that's a nice car... I'll give you $2500 for it".

This fellow however did better than most as he knew it was a Giulietta for starters. Not just an Alpha (misspelled on propose :) ).

I then say: I don't think you know what these are going for.

He replies: I think I do.

I say: So what do you think they're going for?

His reply: Oh about $40,000.

Needless to say I was surprised... This was the first time someone actually had a reasonable idea of the car's value.

While this conversation was going on, my wife came out to see what was happening and upon hearing the offer quickly said "over my dead body".

So I didn't even have time to consider the offer. :grin2:

To add some insight... My wife and I were dating when I bought the Sprint in '75 and she was the first to be given a ride after it was made roadworthy in 1977. So it's no surprise the little Giulietta is considered part of the 'family' is it?

A 1977 photo...
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
History Circa 1967

I feel a bit luckier than most in that I was provided photos of the car from January 1967 when the car was much younger.

Originally my Giulietta was titled as a 1961. I understand that it was common, at the time, to title vehicles when sold as opposed to when they were manufactured. I have since had the title corrected to show the model year as a 1959.

Based on the 'sale' date, these photos represent the Sprint within 6 years of being first sold.

These photos are of note for the following:
-No hood spear
-No 'Giulietta' script on front fenders
-No 'Sprint' script on trunk lid

However, it is a bit puzzling to me why the above items are missing for the following reasons:
-In Jan 1967 the car was fairly new, and unlikely would be repainted unless damaged
-Why remove the 'Giulietta' script and leave the Bertone badge right next to it
-Why remove the 'Sprint' script and leave the Alfa Rome badge just above it
-When I stripped the car down to the metal there wasn't any accident damage and I don't recall any obvious holes that were filled on the hood, fenders or trunk.

I'm not saying that the car didn't come with them, it's just a bit odd. And this post also documents that they were removed prior to 1967. :)






As a counterpoint, here's a photo (from Giuliettas.com) of Sprint ‘Normale’ Tipo 10105 1493*20825 that was made just five Sprints before mine (1493*20830). This example has the trim that is missing from mine. Hey, maybe they ran out by the time they built mine . :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
History Circa 1975

As mentioned earlier I purchased my Alfa in 1975 from a friend.

At the time it was in a field next to his parents house... The term 'parents house' comes up a couple more times... you'll see :). The time in the field was short, but the horizontal surfaces did begin to rust. Thankfully, the rust was limited to the hood, top and trunk these were sandblasted prior to the primer coat.

My friend had purchased it from the son of a family friend about 1973. Seems the car had a catastrophic engine failure and the Sprint had been disassembled by their son (the one that owned it in '67) at his parent's house. The engine failed due to a rod punching a hole in the side of the block. As we know, a disassembled vehicle can occupy a great deal of space and at some point the parents wanted their garage back. Hence the sale.

Fortunately, the Alfa parts had been stored inside and had been untouched. I basically got the Sprint with the engine and transmission, in parts and pieces, in several boxes.

I started stripping the paint at my parent's house in 1975 with the drive-train installed in 1976 and the paint following in 1977.

Fall 1975 - Just primered and heading to Ron Tonkin's (the old shop in Portland, OR) for the drive-train install. Done by a mechanic named Tucker (who gave directions by the locations of Bars :) )


Fall 1976 - Picking up the Sprint... A happy day!


1977 - Painted and running - Woo-Hoo!


Fall 1978 - In the local paper


Fall 1978 - At another car show
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Velcoe-ized

Though the Sprint began as a Normale (and still is based on the VIN) it had been updated with some Veloce items some point before 1975. In the boxes of parts I found:
-Veloce Air Filter
-Weber DCO3s with manifold
-Small tube headers
-Veloce Electric fuel pump installed back by the tank
-Aluminum Oil Pan
-Aluminium Aeroplane License plate lamp

The current 101 1300cc engine (the 2nd replacement sourced from Ralli-Round Seattle ~1984) runs quite well in town using a 1600 manifold and 40 DCOEs (Tucker, the mechanic, found the DCO3s unusable and provided the DCOEs). As the DCOEs are deeper, they do not allow for much air box space between carb and inner fender. I'm running a early cold air box modified to fit the DCOEs.






Please don't give me too much flak regarding the air filter mount, I made this fix when I was ~20 yrs old. I'm looking for a correct one. Please let me know if you can help. [2019 update: I installed the correct Veloce air filter mounts from Tony at Alfastop UK.]
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Thanks for the welcome Uncle & Subtle.

I've contacted Centerline and I'm on their list. They were going to contact the person that repros them to see if he'll sell a single mount.
 

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I like your Sprint, and the story associated with the car. I recently restored my 1961 Sprint Veloce that was purchased late in 1961 by my father.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks Kuni... Sounds like your Alfa has some family history too... Cool :thumbup:

At some point I may do a real restoration, I've never been in a position to refresh it from top to bottom. Mostly it's been a series of repairs separated by lengths of time. Once it was my only transportation (Yes Alfas do handle well in the snow) :).

I'm thankful that there are so many parts now being reproduced for our Alfas. When I was younger, not much available, and what was I couldn't afford. And I've had to McGiver a few solutions over the years. As a result my Giulietta will not win a concourse, but I'm OK with that, I'll just drive it. :)
 

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Thanks Kuni... Sounds like your Alfa has some family history too... Cool :thumbup:

At some point I may do a real restoration, I've never been in a position to refresh it from top to bottom. Mostly it's been a series of repairs separated by lengths of time. Once it was my only transportation (Yes Alfas do handle well in the snow) :).

I'm thankful that there are so many parts now being reproduced for our Alfas. When I was younger, not much available, and what was I couldn't afford. And I've had to McGiver a few solutions over the years. As a result my Giulietta will not win a concourse, but I'm OK with that, I'll just drive it. :)
Don't mess with it.. you will ruin the history of this car and your ownership story... and most of all you will make it a garage queen. BTW, thumbs up on the duct routing..she is indeed a jewel you should be proud of just the way she is. Uncle
 

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Thanks, Ron. Beautiful story. You have a jewel and a rare bird, try to find another one. Enjoy the miles ahead of you with your old friend. And, I trust your current maintenance/repair, whatever it my be goes as smooth as these cars drive. Zelda.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
1985 - My 'Disco' Period

About 1984 my Giulietta wheels are looking real shabby... I begin researching aluminum wheel options for my Giulietta. This becomes a real quest as 1) they need to clear the large front drums and 2) be narrow enough to fit inside the wheel wells without fouling.

As a result of the research, I found three options; The magnesium wheels, now being reproduced (Big $), Custom two piece wheels (also Big $) and, Custom wire wheels (Big $). The common issue here was the Big $, which put these options out of my reach.

Then I remember that the previous owner had used the Alfa wheels on his Ford Pinto... Yes, looked way wrong, but they fit (and most important they didn't fall off and he didn't die).

So I start to do the math... 108 mm / 25.4 = 4.252 in. (off by .002 in.). 4.25" is indeed the Ford bolt circle for many fine automobiles like the Pinto, Tiempo, Granada, early 6 cyl Mustangs, Mavericks, etc. Now to find an application that would clear the big Alfa drums. Not an easy task as the previous references used either 13" or 14" wheels.

Then wow, I hit upon the TRX! The Mustang II, and various euro cars like BMW, Renaults, Citroens, Peugeots and Saab, offered this wheel option. At 390 mm they are 15.3" in diameter and clear the drums and at 150 mm they are 5.9" wide. I decide to give it a go and the search is on... I find a set at a Portland swap meet for $75. Order up a set of 180/65-390 TRX tires (the narrowest) and I'm good to go. :thumbup:

I used them on my Sprint from 1985 to 2015, and the worked well. I would probably still be running them if they were not 30+ year old tires and that replacements were now $400 each (more expensive than even the Pirelli CA-67s).

So I pulled the old wheels out of storage and had them powder coated sliver (all 5). I'm using the caps I have for now (all 4 have noticeable flaws). I'll be ordering new 4 repros once Centerline has them back in stock.

And so I've come to the end of my 'bling' period. :)

I liked the look with the polished rim, and custom machined caps. To my eye, the oval slots reflect the shape of the Sprint. Pictures taken ~2002.
At Sam Barer get together in Olympia:

At Puget Sound Alfa Romeo Owners Association event:
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Thanks Zelda. Yes the repairs continue... I first repaired the rear brakes and now the master cylinder has started to leak fluid. So I've pulled the masted cylinder and sent it to AutoSport Seattle for sleeving. I'm also pulling the front wheel cylinders for rebuilding. I got the first three out in 45 min, that last one however, is a bugger. I've been working on it intermittently for two days. :(

When I'm finished, I'll have done a complete brake rebuild. :)

Hey, just want to do a shout-out to the the ALFABB. The info contained here has been so helpful. Thanks :thumbup:
 

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Cool car and great story. Particularly like the fact that your wife loves the car too!
Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
September Update

The Sprint is now up on jack stands. The master cylinder started leaking. I've decided to redo the brakes... including wheel cylinders, turn the drums and new linings. Waiting for the master cylinder to come back from AutoSport Seattle with a new sleeve.

In the meantime, I'm addressing the shudder/jumping I get in reverse. Never had an issue when moving forward. After a lot of research, I think I hit on the cause (follow link to Shutter/Judder/Thump thump thump).

Here's the old tired transmission mount prior to being removed. Note improper orientation:


I've also made some spacers to attach the transmission cross member to the frame more securely. The new spacers replaced some simple tubes that were previously used. While I was at it I replaces the Transmission silent block (using the BattleBug technique) to get it out and the Heat on the transmission/freeze the silent block technique to seat the new one. Also replaced the failing driveshaft support.

I should have taken a pic of the old cross-member spacer but I think you can get an idea from the images below...

On the workbench...


Installed on the car...


Can't wait to get the tires back on the ground... :)
 

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I have used those transmission spacers for 200,000 miles and never had any problems. I realize that the transmission bracket was not properly designed for the split case transmission. I would remove the steel donut band before driving the car.
 

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Great Alfa!

I too had adapters for my standard transmission mount for the five speed conversion. Did not like them. Decided on a 5 speed Giulia trans mount. Works well. Your final solution look good too.

Like the picture at Griots. Been there many times with the my 61 Sprint.

Good luck on the brakes. Took me 3 tries on shoe material to get it right.
 
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