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Hello from an accidental Alfa newbie...recently picked up a 1988 Milano Verde that needed some work. Wasn't planing on it but this boxy chassis reminded me of Lancia Integrale which I lusted over when I was a kid!

I am a motorcycle mechanic, have a few tools at home and I am not afraid of the work so I rolled up my sleeves to see if I can make this car run good enough to be used by my wife once a week to get to/from work and as a pleasure craft for me when I need extra wheels.

I should mention I am no stranger to Italian engineering.

As soon as I got it running I came across something I couldn't solve easily.

Namely when the engine is cold and I put it in reverse the first time the odometer/trip meter unit starts to make noise followed by very rapid mileage counting. If left alone it will count about 30 miles in a 60 second period.

I can can get it to stop this weird behavior two ways:

1) Turn ignition off/on again. After that it all works as normal.
2) Tap the instrument cluster from above by hand a few times at which point the speedo needle sweeps to max and back to zero and odometer/trip meter starts to work normal for the rest of the drive.

Does anyone know what could be the cause of this? Or even better can anyone explain the principles of operation upon which the odometer/trip meter functions? This could greatly aid in trying to solve this problem.

Thank you all for this great place.
 

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Welcome!

A few things - if it only does it in REVERSE, check the wiring under the rear seat. The wiring for the speedometer and the reverse lights are there. An exposed pair of wires would do wonky things.

If it's just when cold and does it in any gear, and a tap or reset solves it, it's probably a loose wire or ground at cluster or near.

It's not terrible to remove the cluster, and if your tachometer sweeps slowly or not at all, it's a good time to have it repaired (Palo Alto Speedometer did mine, and now the tach sweeps properly all the way through the rev range). They also checked all the other functions for me.

Good luck!
 
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