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Discussion Starter #1
I finally started my Berlina today after 8 months! Yea!

Now the bad news.... After running for about two minutes, I shut it off and checked the oil. I had only put six quarts and wanted to see if I needed to put in a seventh quart. Well, the oil level was at the max on the dip stick, but it looked a little foamy. So I took the cam cover off, and sure enough, the oil is all foamy.

I have been advised to run the car at 1500 - 2000 rpm for about 45 minutes, change the oil and see if it clears up.

Does this sound like good advice?

The engine was rebuilt stock with new pistons, liners, balanced, Sperry head, etc. There is no oil in the water.

I am especially panic'd since I am planning to use this car this weekend for the Time Trials at Willow Springs!
 

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Not so good. If it were a bad head gasket the oil usually goes into the coolant because it's under much higher pressure. Sounds as if the coolant is leaking into the crankcase from perhaps the lower cylinder liner seals. That's especially not good because you'll have to pull the oil pan (crummy job) and the cylinder head to get to the liners. Or easier just to pull the engine again.

Drain the oil and make sure that it's coolant in it. I wouldn't run an engine with glycol in the oil. The glycol acts as a dispersant to the oil and will very quickly wear your bearings if you run the engine that way for long. Don't leave that oil in the engine if it's contaminated.

To check for cylinder seal failure, I suppose you could drain the oil and leave the drain plug out, then pressurized the radiator for a while and see if you get coolant draining out the oil drain plug.

Sounds like a botched rebuild, although if all that special work was done, you'd think that the guy doing it was competent. Are you sure the lower seals on the cylinder sleeves were installed? Did they check that the cylinders were protruding slightly (.0004-.0024") above the cylinder block prior to fitting the cylinder head? I would assume so, since the head seems to fit tight.

That's my best cut on the situation. I'm sure some else has experienced this before, so may be of more help.
 

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Ouch!

Jeff:

Sorry about your misfortune. That really stinks. Two minutes didn't let it even warm up. Must be the seals RT mentioned or the head gasket was damaged when putting the head back on. Unless its just a bad head gasket, you won't be driving her this weekend.

John M
 

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Discussion Starter #4
O.K. so I pressure tested the cooling system with the oil out as well as the drain plug. Sure enough, I have water coming out the oil pan!

Does anyone in the Los Angeles area have a spare 1750 that I can buy or borrow? I would need to pick it up on Thursday if I want to get it installed and running by Friday night!
 

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Water comming out of you're oil pan. Does not sound right. Where exactly is the leak? If it's in the front of the oil pan, it's you're water pump that's leaking. But I don't think that would create foamy oil, maybe you're water pump is bad too.

Investigate a little more before you start wrenching, call up some mechcanics.

P.S. My water pump leaked for 2 days and it magically fixed itself.
 

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Try pulling the cam cover off and peer down in the timing chain well and see if you see any coolant there (after pressurizing the system).

If not there, pull the sump off and repressurize the coolant and see exactly which liner is leaking or if it's coming from the timing chain area.

If it's indeed the liners, you can probably get new liner seals and install them by Friday. I'd pull the head and check the head gasket, but you'll probably have to pull the oil pan as well, disconnect the rod caps, and pull the cylinder liners, pistons, and rods as a unit. Then, install the new liner rings. I heard some people use a bit of hi temp sealant as well.

Good Luck
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The Berlina is back!

The engine was built by at Sperry Valve works. Stuart is a great guy. When the engine leaked water into the oil, I had the car sent down to his shop. He pulled the engine, reinstalled the liners, reinstalled the engine, then repaired a few other items that were out of wack, tuned the Spica and got the car back to me in a week. He only charged me for the parts - no labor!

This is the first time he has ever had an engine leak at the liners and he really stood behind his work.

I drove the car home from Long Beach with no interior, no seals, no mirrors, no hood, and no turn signals!

It ran great! Can't wait to finish putting it together. I was going to go the get together at SkateLab, but the car really is not ready. Besides, I have completely ignored my wife for the past month due to the Alfas, so I guess I will have to go to dinner with her tonight!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I do have an A4 for my daily driver, but my wife keeps stealing it, leaving me her Volvo wagon. I am planning to use the Berlina as my daily driver as soon as it is finished. I still have some electrical work to do, and I need to install the new interior that I bought from ReOriginals.

I also need to get some sounds installed and haven't made any decisions as to what I am going to install. Anyone have any recommendations on something that sounds great, but is invisible? I would like the interior to look close to original, or at least period correct. Now that I said that, I should probably just hack some big holes in the door panels and some Pioneer 6x9's in the rear parcel shelf, put an 8 track player in the dash! Not!
 

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Audio

I was thinking about putting a head unit in the glove box, and then a CD-changer in the rear trunk, with a RF (not IR) remote control. Try to keep the dash as original as possible.

It turns out my GTV has a pioneer cassette player and a big hole in the dash already. :(
My choice is now a Blaupunkt Santa Fe.
Not too expensive, not too fancy, sounds pretty good.

jthraen said:
I would like the interior to look close to original, or at least period correct. Now that I said that, I should probably just hack some big holes in the door panels and some Pioneer 6x9's in the rear parcel shelf, put an 8 track player in the dash! Not!
 
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