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Well in a fit of aurally induced insanity I ended up buying a salvage black 94 164LS. It sounded great and ran really well and I think I got a decent deal.

Well I finally got a chance to really go over it today and boy did I step in it. The list of things I want to take care of is long and deep. Having a hard time not feeling overwhelmed at the moment. Sheesh. What have I done? :eek:

The power steering rack is a mess. Will need to be replaced. I've been looking at Steve's recent thread on the topic and I'm incredibly intimidated. Almost feel like it might be a good idea to pull the engine out and go over everything. But I don't have the space or shop for that at the moment.

It's leaking coolant from up near the reservoir. No idea where that will lead.

Needs a drivers window regulator.

The clutch slave is a mess. Boot is broken and the feel is total mush. But it works. Hopefully I can replace that and fix the issue. Rather not have to do a clutch right away as well.

The LCD screen needs to be repaired (of course (calling Goats - help please)).

The suspension makes all kinds of mildly alarming noises. Probably needs struts at the least and likely bushings.

The paint work is a mess. Looks like it had a $200 paint job. I plan to do up the body work and get it sprayed by a friend who does super high level restoration, but it's going to be a ton of work. I'm ok with that and kind of looking forward to having something to really be proud of.

It looks like there are some (big) vacuum hoses not connected to anything above the brake master. The cruise doesn't work so maybe this is related to that?

There are myriad other small issues. Like a broken drivers door release handle and funky switches all over. Addressed some of those today.

Pulled off the completely shot sunroof gasket/seal and got the sunroof to move freely. Yay! Need a new seal.

A/C needs charge. Compressor engages but shuts off quickly. Low freon?

I did manage to fix the floppy interior rear view mirror. The clips holding the ball end in place had broken. I managed to turn the clamp ring backwards and tighten it up. It's a little floppy left to right but it stays in place pretty well now.

Needs tires, but I'd rather find some more appealing wheels and do the whole set at once.

Good things? The seats are nice and the interior is overall not bad. And it seems to run really well. And of course the sound. Love that!

Could use some moral support at the moment. Tell me it'll be worth it to take on this project. Please. :helpsmilie:
 

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The car will be worth it, esp if you are handy with a little wrenching (gives you an excuse to buy more tools). I love my 94LS with the so sweet 24v engine. Take each chore one at a time, and you will slowly get there. Is a shame, though, how some just let these cars go.

Are you aware of the past history of the car, the most recent services, ie, cam timing belt changes, etc? Owners suggest that the timing belts on these 24v engines should be changed somewhere between 30k and 40k miles, or 5-6 or so years in age, whichever comes first. To go further in mileage or time is risky, these being interference engines. If you have no previous records, you should think about having the timing belt changed (you can do it yourself, many have, but it's not that easy. Goats (Bob) is good at it). The accessories serpentine belt is easy to change yourself.

Get a copy of the workshop manual, and peruse the Fiat eper parts web site (FIAT ePER :: The FIAT Forum) to see how your car is put together. That site really helps to understand what and where all the parts are located and how they go together. I assume you probably got the owner's manual.

Pity about the paint job. I'm a little surprised the paint is shot or whatever, as the paint on mine is still great. Car covers really help protect it from the sun.

Clutch fluid probably has not been changed in years, and so things get rotten inside. Buy a new slave cyl (mounted on the clutch housing) and the hose, and totally flush/change the fluid. Should make it much better. Depending on how the PO drove the car, the clutch itself can last 30k miles, or 150+k miles. Here's hoping...

In fact, change all fluids with new. Most owners use Mobil 1 15W-50 synthetic oil and the NGK Iridium plugs for best results. I use the best ATE very high temp brake fluid for both the brakes and the clutch.

The coolant reservoirs on these cars can develop leaks, requiring replacement, as they are very difficult to repair, being polyethylene plastic, ie, no glues or solvents work. The trick is to find a used but good one, or a new replacement aftermarket one which will hold up for a few thousand miles. Jason (of Alfissimo Alfa Parts, a good source of parts) is working on finding a source for metal replacements. First, look for the source of the leak, might just be a loose hose clamp.

As for the steering, first try some Lucas Power Steering Stop Leak to see if that slows/stops the leaking. Worked for my 91S so far for a few k's of miles. Keep in mind the steering takes ATF, not power steering fluid. The transmission does as well, although some have used gear oil with ok results evidently.

I wouldn't worry about the cruise control, as half the time it doesn't work anyway. I've never bothered to even try the cc in my 164s, don't believe in it being in Alfas, lol.

The front suspension in the 164 does make some noises, in my experience mostly from dry/worn stab bar bushings, also in part from the large diameter front strut ball ball bearings (they seem to pop when turning the steering, mostly in my experience during backing up out of the driveway). Usually, the struts themselves are good, but the boots and bushings wear out, as well as the lower arm inboard bushings (most just buy new inexpensive arms complete with new bushings. Also check the stab bar outer lollipop bushings as they can wear out, requiring replacement (talk to Jason for better aftermarket strut lollipops w/bushings, also for a new sunroof seal).

There are new, rebuilt, and used parts available for these cars, but sometimes it takes just a little searching to find them. There are at least several good sources for new replacement parts, such as Jason (Alfissimo), DiFatta, and others listed in the BB, and places such as APE supply used parts. The BB ad section itself can be a good source, as people part out wrecked cars, or try to clear out their own supply of spares, lol.

Check the list of mechanics in the BB for help which might be in your area. Basically, don't even think about making modifications to the car before getting it squared away as stock. Then, you can think about 16 inch wheels for better grade tires, Koni shocks if you can find them used, 1994/95Q 45 mm intake runners, aftermarket stab bars. I've found that these minor changes really make the car even better (my mechanic saying, "what the heck kind of LS is this?".

Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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Yea you stepped in it alright but at least you did it with a tether and we won't let you go in over your neck so you'll be okay.

You're welcome to visit the thread I started a year ago under similar circumstances titled 164S Reinstatement Of course I bought a 12 valve car but then I did buy TWO of them so actually I do have 24 valves.

YaY!!
 

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Hi There!
I feel very similar with my recent 91 164L (Envious you got the last generation with the cool LCD display and all!) having turned the wrench in it now for the first time (I have a thread about my fun with cam positioning sensor bracket bolts) I can say while some of it makes me scratch my head (Three piece water pump o_O) some of the engineering is fantastic (the mechanical tensioner for the timing belt puts the tensioning process on Porsche TBs to shame!) it's helping me to remember at least how it felt driving it, and that sound. (For the record my car's paint job is half done; shine a light and you can tell from the A pillars forward it was repainted :-D) Please do keep us posted! Good luck! it'll work!
 

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probably wearing your best shoes as well. Agree with all above. Welcome to the ship of fools. Alfisto Steve Commanding Officer. Ciao, jc
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the support guys! To be honest, if this forum and the awesome people that post here weren't around I would never have had the confidence to jump into this project. I've done a lot of searches and the depth and thoroughness available here is stunning. Thanks!!

I plan to do a series of videos with a friend showing the progress of the car from how it is now to completed and as close to perfection as I can get. Should be fun and I'll be sure to post links here for feedback.
 

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Woot! I fixed the drivers door release handle. I didn't realize that the release was different on the 94 from what I've seen here in the forums on the older cars. The only thing wrong was the cable sheath end had come out of the slide in retainer. Slid it back in, added some dry lube, and blam! Problem solved! I can now open the door without having to lover the window and use the outside handle!
 

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Fix just one at a time, with a beer or two in between, and she will come together at a nice pace. It'll just get just better and better.

Do keep in mind about the timing belt change.
 

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Heard from the PO today that the PPO had the timing belt done a little less than a year ago. I'm assuming worst case he did 10k miles in that time so I figure I've got 20k miles or3 years-ish til I need to do it again. Yay!

I found the alarm remote in the bin under the arm rest and got some new batteries and by gum it works. Yay again!

The car is coming along.

Just now I discovered that the headlights are missing some mounting bracket stuff. I need the corner lights too. I'm guessing the salvage was caused by a rear end collision that then messed up the front end too.

You're right Del, one thing at a time. But it's coming along and I feel a lot better about it today!

Question: Can I put pre 94 bumpers on this car? The chrome trim around the belt line is a mess and I think it's ugly too.Trying to figure out what to do there.
 

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Looks sharp! Sadly the only picture of -my- beast seems to be in its natural habitat so far...on a flat bed lorrie :-D
 

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The good news is the timing belt, once you've set the engine to TDC with the aid of that great template, is a breeze, proper tensioning (assuming you have the mechanical tensioner) even more so! On a Porsche 944/968 motor, ugh...just...bad.
 

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Yes you can put the regular bumper bars on, just remove the bumper bars and the shock absorbers behind, then straight swap, it will look better if you get the side door trim pieces too match too, if you want to go all the way for the best 164 look, grab the QV kit, gives the 164 a great looking stance, you can also update the headlights to the better looking, better beam Bosch headlights.
 

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There was S front/rear bumpers advertised on Craigslist in Marysville, WA for a long time, but it's not there now. It may come up again in a week or so. $250 and looked in really good condition.
 

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Car does look good in that picture.

I was able to buy new side "chrome" side stripes from DiFatta a few years ago, but don't know if they are still available. That material, whatever it is, is very soft, maybe polished aluminum (didn't really check) showing every nick and dent from careless irresponsible %$#@&* people opening their car doors. I personally think the LS trim looks pretty good compared to the B and L. It's a slightly more formal look, if you like that. The Q trim of course is the same as the S, as far as I know. those body trim pieces do show up now and then.

I don't think there is a cam template for the 24v engine, is there?

I did install the Bosch headlights. They ARE different, but NOT inexpensive. Some like them, some don't like the sharp cutoff. I generally like them, as they are like the sharp cutoff Euro headlights I used to buy for my older Alfas. I like the better high beam, mostly.

Keep in mind that you can buy RH drive headlights and then change them to LH drive by loosening some screws inside and rotating the inner part to provide the LH drive cutoff. I was able to do that with the ones I bought. I'm not sure the previous owner knew which way they were, as I don't think he actually mounted them.

Glad you found out about the timing belt. Yes, you have probably as much as 30k miles left on it. I go to ~40k miles on mine. I wouldn't go over. did he say who did the change? That's pretty important.
 

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The good news is the timing belt, once you've set the engine to TDC with the aid of that great template, is a breeze, proper tensioning (assuming you have the mechanical tensioner) even more so! On a Porsche 944/968 motor, ugh...just...bad.
This procedure does not apply to the 24v engine.
 

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Before trashing the regulator, double check the switch. I had 6 dirty switches in my 95 ls that I drove from Montreal to my place north of Toronto. They were: 2 window switches, sunroom closer switch, one on the console (can't remember which), one mirror switch and the window center lock switch. I cleaned them all one by one and happy to say that they all still work. Mind you, the center locks do not but I can hear them straining so I expect some dirty linkages are the issue. Winter project.
I bought a nice set of 15" MOMO 6 spike wheels (6 arm, 6 star?) and the guy still has a set of MOMO 16x7, 5 arm (two smaller arms per group so I guess that's 10 arms) available for 500CDN (about $430 US). Not sure if that's a good price but let me know and I can pass on his number. He is north of Toronto so shipping is huge. Better if you know someone in the area that can pick up for you.
As for new wheels, RSX does make 15 inch and 16 inch on a 98x5 pattern. I purchased a set for my wifes Sentra and could,'t imagine the same wheels on my Alfa. This picture is of a similar RSX 15" wheel. The extra holes are dummy holes. This sells for about $123 CDN at Wheels For Less in Toronto so you may be able to source at your local. I have seen the 16" MILANO style locally for $124 CDN. Best of luck to you.
 

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Before trashing the regulator, double check the switch. I had 6 dirty switches in my 95 ls that I drove from Montreal to my place north of Toronto. They were: 2 window switches, sunroom closer switch, one on the console (can't remember which), one mirror switch and the window center lock switch. I cleaned them all one by one and happy to say that they all still work. Mind you, the center locks do not but I can hear them straining so I expect some dirty linkages are the issue. Winter project.
I bought a nice set of 15" MOMO 6 spike wheels (6 arm, 6 star?) and the guy still has a set of MOMO 16x7, 5 arm (two smaller arms per group so I guess that's 10 arms) available for 500CDN (about $430 US). Not sure if that's a good price but let me know and I can pass on his number. He is north of Toronto so shipping is huge. Better if you know someone in the area that can pick up for you.
As for new wheels, RSX does make 15 inch and 16 inch on a 98x5 pattern. I purchased a set for my wifes Sentra and could,'t imagine the same wheels on my Alfa. This picture is of a similar RSX 15" wheel. The extra holes are dummy holes. This sells for about $123 CDN at Wheels For Less in Toronto so you may be able to source at your local. I have seen the 16" MILANO style locally for $124 CDN. Best of luck to you.
Thanks much for your help! I need to clean more switches for sure.

I would love to have the contact info for the Momo wheels. There is a certain type that I think would be killer on these cars and you may have described it exactly. PM?
 
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