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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have a Berlina now - may I be admitted to the club? I have been lurking around this forum for the last few months trying to understand what all the fuss is about a 4 door sedan. I've had Alfa's for years but always Spiders and more recently GTV's. But I've never even seen a sedan before.

BillS out of the blue emails me saying that there is a decent 71 in his area and sends me a bunch of pictures. An ugly duckling but she might just fit right in with the rest of my rogues gallery if misfit Alfa's. So two weeks later, the day after thanksgiving, here comes the car hauler down the road with HMS Berlina perched atop.

I instantly fell in love love with her - warts and all.

"According to our documentation files, the chassis number AR 1557345 originally corresponds to an Alfa Romeo 1750 Berlina USA (105.71), manufactured on the 23rd July 1971 and sold on the 26th July 1971 to Alfa Romeo Newark, U.S.A.

The body colour is amaranth red, with wild boar leather tex interiors. "

According to the PO, the car had been restored about ten years ago and the resto is showing it's age. There is some rust in the usual places but not so bad compared to some of the others that I have seen. The body is generally straight except where a tree limb hit the top of the A pillar, the driver's mirror, and the top of the driver's side fender.

The interior is a little above average I would say. There are cracks and tears but nothing is shredded. The carpeting is pretty well shot but I am thinking a little dye might be in order. All the electrical works except the radio and the heater blower which I expect will be nothing more than a fuse or a bad ground. Even the clock works which is a bit surprising to me. If all goes well and the car is as solid as it first seems, I may pop for some new upholstery. If I do that, I might just add seat heaters (can you guess it's turned cold here in the Midwest?). Tomorrow we will start to buff out the paint and see if she'll shine a bit... Stay tuned!

A few pictures in the barn and it's first full day with us:


Pretty Dirty - I think the undercarriage was cleaner than the body.
100_2002.jpg

100_2003.jpg


Interior is livable if a bit tired...
100_1996.jpg


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P1050675.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter #2
The head was reworked and warmed up but the bottom was left alone and the PO thought that the rings were shot. The motor has Webers and hasn't been run in several years. After changing all the fluids, I cranked her over and in about 3-4 spins she sputtered to life - barely. I popped it into gear and moved it about 3 feet, applied the brakes and was satisfied that everything seemed to operate properly (motor not withstanding). The forward Weber started drooling fuel and after a backfire followed by a fire I decided to call it a day. I was pleasantly surprised that there was no smoke out the tailpipe.

The next day I swapped in some recently acquired but as yet untested Webers and tried again. More of the same. Rather than continue trying to trouble shoot the carbs which I know absolutely nothing about, I decided to drop in a recently rebuilt 1750 with an Ingram SPICA MFI unit. So today the old motor came out. Tomorrow the new motor goes in and hopefully a maiden voyage late in the day.

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Webers, Euro Cams, performance dizzy.
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Pretty clean considering all I did was blow it out with compressed air.
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A fairly common sight around these parts.
 

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Very nice....looks great...keep up the good work...and inform us with the progress...all the best.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hey here are couple of items I've not seen before. Anybody familiar with either of them them?

This appears to be some kind of regulator. It looks like they are feeding with both the SPICA feed and return lines. Come to think of it, I haven't checked to see what kind of pump is back there.

Weber thingy.JPG


This is a fancy schmancy coil unit. It is matched to the aftermarket dizzy.
P1050670.JPG

For me, buying a beater is a blast - it's like opening presents on Christmas day!
 

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Ok...Rich....you are innn.....and remember this...'' Dont ever start a berlina project ...you cannot finish''......LOLOLOLO....who said that....!!!

Another '' Berlina Fever '' .....Candidate....welcome aboard.
 

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Hey here are couple of items I've not seen before. Anybody familiar with either of them them?

This appears to be some kind of regulator. It looks like they are feeding with both the SPICA feed and return lines. Come to think of it, I haven't checked to see what kind of pump is back there.

View attachment 85565


This is a fancy schmancy coil unit. It is matched to the aftermarket dizzy.
View attachment 85566

For me, buying a beater is a blast - it's like opening presents on Christmas day!
Your fancy schmancy coil is a Marelli coil to match a Marelli electronic (breakerless) distributer, probably taken from a 2000 GTV (euro-spec to you guys I guess). Or possibly an Alfetta of some sort.
 

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wonderfull. !!

but in US, the 2nd series have an interior of first series ("accoudoir de banquette arriere 1ere serie" in french..) .???
 

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The fuel pressure regulator is an aftermarket adjustable unit. The return line is probably plumbed so that it doesn't make noise with the high pressure pump. I used two of these on a 71 Spider I converted to Webers and with the high pressure pump they made a squealing noise. I just changed to a lower pressure pump but this solution should work also.
 

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Hey here are couple of items I've not seen before. Anybody familiar with either of them them?

This appears to be some kind of regulator. It looks like they are feeding with both the SPICA feed and return lines. Come to think of it, I haven't checked to see what kind of pump is back there.

View attachment 85565

Nice find, congrats! It's still my wish too to add a sedan to my collection one day!
that's a fuel pressure regulator. Probably because the car was changed from a Spica to carbs without changing out the high pressure fuel pump the flow to the carbs had to be toned down....
 

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When I went to see this car I was kicking myself for not looking at it sooner. It's a much better starting point than my '69 Berlina was but I'm too far along with that one to take on another. Sensing that Rich was developing a weak spot I decided to email a bunch of pictures to wet his appetite. It worked! I know it's in good hands and I'm sure the former owner feels the same.
 

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The coil is a Marelliplex unit, commonly added to 105/115/116 cars in the 70s and 80s. The fuel pressure regulator is a common dial-in type available from auto parts stores, Summit, etc., probably to drop the pressure for the Webers if the car still has its Spica fuel deliver pump, which is too much pressure for carbs.

Congrats; best year Berlina and it looks like a great cars.

Andrew
 

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Can you tell me the engine number of the original engine? And the build date on the driver's door jamb; should be 4/71 or 5/71?

Yay, going back to Spica is the way to go.

If you're not on the email list for Berlina newsletters, send me an email with your email address and I'll sign you up. Thanks

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the info and well wishes. Was the Marelliplex unit a factory option?

So sometimes being the boss has its advantages: I left a message on the car that I needed a "volunteer" to powerwash the engine bay. When I came in this morning it was taken care of. The significance of this act cannot be understated - it was very cold and rainy this morning. Could Christmas bonuses be far behind...

P1050699.JPG

With a clean engine bay we got going on the transplant. We removed the Marelliplex unit (I wanted to be sure I had a setup that I knew worked - it will be back in soon) and swapped the fuel regulator for the standard SPICA filter/distribution unit. The SPICA fuel pump was still intact so there was nothing to there except replace the filter. I decided to use the transmission but I replaced the clutch and clutch slave cylinder.

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The SPICA specific wires had been carefully wrapped and easy to put back in service. Everything went pretty smooth. Once the fuel lines filled, the motor fired almost immediately. Filled the radiator and took it down the road for its maiden voyage.

The motor needs some final adjustment but I'm still in break-in mode so no fun stuff yet. The suspension floats and squeaks a little but that is to be expected of a car that hasn't been exersized in years. The highlight was the butter smooth transmission. The lowlight is a vibration that I suspect might be an unbalanced driveshaft.

The bottom line is that I drove it home tonight and it was a blast! I was surprised at how quiet it is - particularly wind noise. Not quite as sporty feeling as the Spider or GTV but very willing to go into a corner and not so jarring over the road craters. Once the motor is sorted out and the vibration is dealt with we'll what she is really capable of...

P1050705.JPG

I still haven't even washed the poor thing yet...
 

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You don't mess around; this is great progress.

Berlinas are excellent cars, with their own appeal. Good commuters and freeway haul-butt cars due to the long wheelbase and quiet interior.

Plex was not an option in the Berlina years because it didn't exist yet. I think it came in with late 70s/early 80s Spiders, and got retrofitted a lot. Not sure of the exact year.

Andrew
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks Andrew - owe it all to those who have gone before...

The block ID # is AR00551*07070

I don't know for sure but I am pretty sure it is the original block. The PO had head work done said they didn't touch the bottom...

So help if you can, I want to determine what diff ratio I have. Are there any markings on the case that would indicate the ratio or do I need to dust off my slide rule?

Also, not to beat a dead horse but where the Plex's standard or a factory option on any of the production Alfa's?
 

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Unless it's been changed, it'll be a 4.56 non-LSD. No ratio info on the outside, normally. Figure out the ratio by counting revolutions. The 2000 LSD 4.56 has a small extension on the front bottom in front of the sump, and some diagonal ribs behind the sump rear. If they're not there, likely it's a regular 1750 axle.

That engine number makes sense in the series I have, so I think it's original. I am not certain about Plex as having been standard, but think so on late 70s pre-Bosch Spiders. Not on Berlinas though.

Date on door jamb plate? 4/71 or 5/71?

Andrew
 

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awesome car. But changing it back to Spica???
the Marelli was standard here on later Alfa's, like the 116 series. For your rear axle, what colour paint is on the nut behind the propshaft coupling? I'll bet light green!
wich would be 10/43.
The marelli: put it back in, MUCH better than points!
Man, I'd LOVE a set of US spec taillight covers!
 

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Apparently the single sensor Marelliplex was never stock in the U.S. A lot of them were sold as aftermarket improvements though, and as vintage speed equipment, still hold up very well today. A working Marelliplex with coil(required) will usually sell on ebay from $150 - $250. A nice little bonus in your engine compartment, Rich.

The Marelliplex that was used in the '80-'81 Spiders was a dual sensor unit that was probably an emissions band-aid. I need to find out a little more about those units since I have one.
 
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