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So, you're looking for charity in pursuit of your hobby?

Tappets are a commodity. One can buy good quality or poor. Centerline has good at a fair price. Do you want poor quality, or good at an unfair price?
 

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My guess is nowadays unless you find some racer making super-strong super-light ones like Horst Kwech's team used to do by hand (Gordon was there), what Centerline, IAP, and Jon Norman offer is all there is. Not a big market for these nowadays, in the global scheme of things.

Andrew
 

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If you are willing to invest in a new shim kit, you can use aftermarket buckets from a Subaru (e.g. Supertech). They are less money than Alfa ones, but use a flat disc shim.
 

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If you are that frugal and have 45 minutes you can also recondition the stock Alfa followers yourself with only a small piece of plate glass and $2 worth of sandpaper.
 

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Andrew,

I now run the aftermarket Subaru stuff Erik mentions in my race engines because they are light, readily available, and easy, but did recondition for years.

I have never gotten through to anything soft. And have only reconditioned used lifters cupped from regular wear, not ones that have had a problem. I just start with some lubricated medium grit paper on the glass and move the lifter in a circular motion, usually figure 8, until the paper is making contact over the entire surface of the follower which means it is reconditioned flat. Changing where you grip the lifter often is a good idea. I try to be gentle and let the abrasive work as if I hurry and press the lifter will end up getting ground more on the outer edges. Once perfectly flat with the paper contacting everywhere I work it on some 800 to 1000grit until I only have those fine scratches. I have been told that this is a lot finer than required but it just seemed better to me. The key again is that it is flat and the way to tell is if the paper is sanding the entire surface. Mostly I have done this on race engines with 11-13mm cams and steep ramps so with care I think it is very possible for a street or street performance cam.
 

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Subaru shims probably go on top of the tappet, like Fiat and many motorcycles?
So the 'baru buckets are a straight drop-in? That's kind of amazing. Legend has it the original Subaru engine was licensed from Borgward, but I don't think it was OHC at that stage.
Andrew
 

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Alfa cam follower tappets nos

I have seven NOS cam followers from Alfa Romeo, not aftermarket.
These are 35mm diameter and 26mm tall.
$30 each? Make offer.
Located near Chicago
 

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Push hard and live
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I'd be very curious to learn more about the Subaru components. Do these fit the existing tappet bores? Does the shim mount on top of the tappet? Part numbers or Subaru application so we can back-track?
 

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KJMDES started this quest/thread, but if he doesn't want them I'm interested. Can't have too many new tappets.
Andrew
 

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OEM Subaru buckets are goofy. There are a couple different styles of aftermarket Subaru buckets made for racing Subaru applications though.

Bill at Apex Machine (a very fine, reputable, and highly recommended Alfa machine services provider) suggested I try this years ago when I was looking for a follower and shim package for use on Alfa race valves with smaller than 8mm diameter valve stems. The Supertech follower I am using has a small flat shim that is retained and centered in a "bucket" on the underside of the follower. The biggest drawback to using these is that shims are often out of stock and unavailable and cost $4-5 each. While the buckets are $24 I probably have more than $400 in putting together a useable shim kit. Then Murphy's law is always in effect and there are still a few I need that are out of stock, both in my kit, and at the manufacturer, which leads me to shorten a stem or two.

Personally, I would never bother using these on other than full race engines, extremely high rpm, or when narrow stem valves with difficult to source shims are in use. But then I would never buy new Alfa followers either. As I described before it is just to easy and inexpensive to recondition the stock followers for most street and race applications.

Lastly the Alfa shim is not flat at all. It has a retaining ring all the way around it intended to keep it centered on the valve stem in lash.
 

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A few years ago I started a thread about lightweight followers and it emerged that Mercedes/Cosworth 190 2.3 16V and Audi S8 (intake side only) cam followers are identical to the Alfa 105 type, but lighter and - supposedly - better made.

For anyone truly in need, I have a very limited stock of original Alfa oversize cam followers ................................
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks so much for all the input.

Thanks DaveB. Thats a good deal. Give it a few days to see if I can find a full set. Strange what we have just sitting around.

FYI- If nitrited, the followers should have a nominal hardened depth of around 0.015inch/0.381mm. With minimal scoring, some careful reconditioning is fine.
 
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