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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My son and I arrived home today around 7:30 p.m. after flying out to LA yesterday morning, buying a 1991 white Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce Automatic, and driving it 850 miles back home to Texas. The original spare wasn't with the car but there was a spare. You guessed it--had a blow out and the spare would not fit the bolt pattern. Wheel says SAAB on it and it is a space saver spare. I was 5 miles from a small town but all this happened within a few feet of two state police officers patrolling the Interstate. They called a wrecker and it picked me up within an hour. Took me into town and I purchased three used tires which worked fine to get me home. I had no other mechanical issues and the car seems to run fine at highway speeds. I did notice that the car wants to stall when I exit the freeway and come to a stop. It will start after sitting just a few minutes and sometimes it doesn't stall but it hessitates very badly and acts like it wants to stall when starting from a stop and at very low speeds. I know the pressure regulator has the vacuum line disconnected and plugged due to fuel leaking through the pressure regulator. I have one from my parts car I had planned to install. The PO says he installed two new pressure regulators and it acted even worse, so he put the leaking regulator back on the car. The second issue I noticed was a very noisy fuel pump that sounds like it is surging when at idle. I also noticed that I don't hear the fuel pump when first starting the car. Since I'm new to these cars I don't know what is normal and what is not. A third issue was the gauges. They all seem to work including the clock, but the speedometer begins jumping when I get around 80 mph and made it difficult to know what speed I was at when between 80 and 100 mph (not that I would ever drive that fast). Also noticed the oil pressure guage would drop to zero while driving at a constant speed but jump back up to 57-60 lbs when I would slow down or hit a bump in the road. I only added one quart of oil in 850 miles so I don't think it was burning oil. Around 600 miles into the trip and doing between 80 and 100 I noticed some smoke at the back of the car when I looked in my rear view mirror. I was close to an exit so I quickly pulled over and found nothing. I checked all the fluids and checked the tires and found no problems. I looked under the car and found a lot of ATF dripping from the transmission mount. Transmission was full but there was a lot of ATF dripping. I decided to get back on the road and I drove the next 60 miles keeping the speed between 60 and 75. Had no issues and no smoke. Checked the transmission fluid at every stop after this incident and not a drop was lost. Totally baffled over the smoke from the rear of the car. After going 60-75 MPH for 60 miles I picked the speed back up to 80 and drove the last 150-200 miles at a pretty constant 80 all the way without an issue other than when I got off the freeway the car wants to bog down and stall or at least it feels that way. Car just doesn't want to pick up speed from a dead stop and when it does it feels like it is cutting out or being starved for fuel. Sure would like to hear from you experienced souls out there who know these cars so much better than I do.

TIA
Alfateen
Back in Texas
 

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Change all the fuel and air filters and see how it drives. I will bet the main fuel filter is full of junk and starving the car for fuel. Run some injector cleaner through it and that will help with throttle response. The fuel pressure regulator is a good suspect as well.
 

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congratulations on your new purchase!!!
 

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If you are in need of a spare that fits, look for a compact spare from a Ford Focus. They bolt right up and weigh 20# less than the stock full size spare. Bonus you get a lot more room in the trunk!

There has been some suggestion the Focus spare may not fit the rear hubs. I haven't proven this yet, but you can "spare" a front wheel to free up one for the back.

TTFN, Elio
 

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My son and I arrived home today around 7:30 p.m. after flying out to LA yesterday morning, buying a 1991 white Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce Automatic, and driving it 850 miles back home to Texas. The original spare wasn't with the car but there was a spare. You guessed it--had a blow out and the spare would not fit the bolt pattern. Wheel says SAAB on it and it is a space saver spare. I was 5 miles from a small town but all this happened within a few feet of two state police officers patrolling the Interstate. They called a wrecker and it picked me up within an hour. Took me into town and I purchased three used tires which worked fine to get me home. I had no other mechanical issues and the car seems to run fine at highway speeds. I did notice that the car wants to stall when I exit the freeway and come to a stop. It will start after sitting just a few minutes and sometimes it doesn't stall but it hessitates very badly and acts like it wants to stall when starting from a stop and at very low speeds. I know the pressure regulator has the vacuum line disconnected and plugged due to fuel leaking through the pressure regulator. I have one from my parts car I had planned to install. The PO says he installed two new pressure regulators and it acted even worse, so he put the leaking regulator back on the car. The second issue I noticed was a very noisy fuel pump that sounds like it is surging when at idle. I also noticed that I don't hear the fuel pump when first starting the car. Since I'm new to these cars I don't know what is normal and what is not. A third issue was the gauges. They all seem to work including the clock, but the speedometer begins jumping when I get around 80 mph and made it difficult to know what speed I was at when between 80 and 100 mph (not that I would ever drive that fast). Also noticed the oil pressure guage would drop to zero while driving at a constant speed but jump back up to 57-60 lbs when I would slow down or hit a bump in the road. I only added one quart of oil in 850 miles so I don't think it was burning oil. Around 600 miles into the trip and doing between 80 and 100 I noticed some smoke at the back of the car when I looked in my rear view mirror. I was close to an exit so I quickly pulled over and found nothing. I checked all the fluids and checked the tires and found no problems. I looked under the car and found a lot of ATF dripping from the transmission mount. Transmission was full but there was a lot of ATF dripping. I decided to get back on the road and I drove the next 60 miles keeping the speed between 60 and 75. Had no issues and no smoke. Checked the transmission fluid at every stop after this incident and not a drop was lost. Totally baffled over the smoke from the rear of the car. After going 60-75 MPH for 60 miles I picked the speed back up to 80 and drove the last 150-200 miles at a pretty constant 80 all the way without an issue other than when I got off the freeway the car wants to bog down and stall or at least it feels that way. Car just doesn't want to pick up speed from a dead stop and when it does it feels like it is cutting out or being starved for fuel. Sure would like to hear from you experienced souls out there who know these cars so much better than I do.

TIA
Alfateen
Back in Texas
interior / exterior pictures?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
When I got back in town with our new acquisition I took the car to our Alfa mechanic and dropped it there. I just got the car back today. Had to replace the pan gasket on the automatic transmission and replaced the pressure regulator. They also pulled the distributor cap and cleaned it up. No more issue so far at idle and the car has a lot more pick-up and go. No more leak under the car so far and overall the car ran great from the shop back to my home. I'll try to get some photos this weekend and post them here.
 

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I agree w/ Chris - "Alfadoc". I think you have something that is keeping you from delivering fuel when you need it.
Welcome and good luck with a new Spider.
 

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Always with some anxiety when embarking on a long first run in a not so new car for the first time.
Seems that you have got sorted the staling and pick up issues. Your smoke was probably trans oil dripping on a hot exhaust. When I did my 800 miles run home after buying my ’70 Spider, I had a similar problem with the oil gauge, just tighten the leads connecter with pliers on the sender.
Your speedometer is probably the electronic type. I had a problem with an ‘80s Alfa Berlina’s speedo, took it out and remove the back cover, couldn’t see anything wrong, gave it a little VD40 (or similar) and fitted it again, cured the problem.
Good luck with your new Spider.
Erik
 

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Good luck - don't know if I would have done that trip with a used unknown quantity Alfa. 1 qt in 800 miles is not an issue IMO especially at high speed driving.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
how do you like the automatic?
I like the automatic transmission and was looking for a car with an automatic when I came across this one. The car is running really well now, but there are still things that I will need to deal with such as the speedometer bounce, oil pressure dropping to zero and bouncing back and some interior items. I have a 1991 Spider parts car with 10958 original miles on it. I plan to use it to restore some things on my Veloce. I'll offer list members first chance at any parts I'm not using. I can't keep the car for long in my neighborhood. I have had it about a month sitting on my trailer, but now that my Veloce is home I can start removing parts and transferring parts to my Veloce. My Veloce has a broken brace on the soft top frame, and the frame on the parts car is perfect. The soft top on the parts car is new also so I thought I would just remove the soft top and frame from the parts car and transfer it to my Veloce. Although the interior in my Veloce isn't all that bad the parts car's interior is in excellent condition so that will be switched out as well. A PO also removed the original power mirror from my Veloce and the parts car has the OE power mirrors. I'll move those to my Veloce as well. That should take care of restoring the Veloce. I'll still take a few parts for some spares, but most of the mechanical/drivetrain will be offered to members of this BB first. BTW, I suspect the hessitation and stalling at idle might have been an ignition issue combined with a bad pressure regulator. This is based on what the mechanic told me.
 

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... The soft top on the parts car is new also so I thought I would just remove the soft top and frame from the parts car and transfer it to my Veloce. ...
Yes, you can "transfer" the top without issues. Do pay special attention to how everything is attached, and take pics before undoing things. It is very easy to get confused or not note which screw goes where and how... You may also want to save some of the parts that typically wear (see what is wearing in your car), and keep two sets, so you can have parts to refurbish when you need them in the future...

Best regards,
 

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I like the automatic transmission and was looking for a car with an automatic when I came across this one. .
I test drove an auto and was very impressed. If I ever sell mine, I will replace with an automatic so my wife can drive it.
 

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Hello again, Ateen....I also have one of the 200 or so auto`s built in `91. Got it for 3 Grand in San Antonio Tx off of Craigslist. Since I`m in Houston I had to trailer it back. Found out the ujoints and saddle bearing on the driveshaft were shot- there replaced now.One burnt wire in the door for interior lights was fished out of the underdash bundle as well. It runs good but I need a nylon hinge bracket for the circuit breaker panel that stows under the drivers knee panel. Maybe you might have one aye? Enjoy your Auto..me and me wife are like kids again. Let me know and Thanks
 

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Hello again, Ateen....I also have one of the 200 or so auto`s built in `91. Got it for 3 Grand in San Antonio Tx off of Craigslist. Since I`m in Houston I had to trailer it back. Found out the ujoints and saddle bearing on the driveshaft were shot- there replaced now.One burnt wire in the door for interior lights was fished out of the underdash bundle as well. It runs good but I need a nylon hinge bracket for the circuit breaker panel that stows under the drivers knee panel. Maybe you might have one aye? Enjoy your Auto..me and me wife are like kids again. Let me know and Thanks
please post pictures of you car - would love to see it. thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I'm in the process of moving some interior parts from my parts car over to my automatic. If weather holds up, I should be able to get some photos this weekend. I took my automatic into the shop as soon as I got it back to El Paso and they replaced the transmission pan gasket and worked on the ignition. The car runs very well for now although the speedometer still bounces around over 40 and I don't think the speedometer is very accurate. I have moved a few interior parts from my parts car over to my automatic, but there are a few more things I still need to do. I have the OE mirrors off the parts car so I can install them on my automatic, but the mirrors are red so I will need to get them painted white to match the automatic. I also want to move the convertible top from the parts car to my automatic. Once I get all the parts I need from my parts car I can begin consentrating on other things that need to be done like the suspension and A/C system.
 
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