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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Good evening fellow travelers.

Remember the engine that ate itself a couple of weeks before the 2019 CI? Well, it's nearly back together.

I had the crank and rod reworked, bought all new bearings, found a better looking oil pump in my box labeled "oil systems", rodded out and air-blew (blowed?) ALL of the galleries in both crank and block, installed threaded plugs in the galley holes, both crank and block, cleaned the cRaP out of everything, and put it all back together.

I've got two spare starters, but both of them have dead solenoids. Dang. So, I need two and Jay needs at least one. Ideas? Anyway...

I bolted up one using safety wire to keep it engaged, and cranked until I got pressure. 70psi! My method of priming the pump was a little different this time. As the pressure gauge outlet hole is AFTER the oil filter, I rolled the engine upside down with the oil pan off, and poured oil into the pickup snorkel while periodically running the starter. It took a while to fill the oil filter canister, but after a while I could tell it was feeding the galleries. Bolted up the oil pan, rolled it over, and cranked until the pressure came up. This engine never made 70 psi, so whatever was the problem appears to now be cured. Either that, or NONE of moving bits are receiving oil and the pressure is due to a complete deadhead. I know that's not the case, as I could see oil coming from around the crank bearings while it was upside down (one of the reasons for doing the priming while upside down and naked), and upon investigating the cams, they were fully bathed in fresh oil. AND, no leaks even though having upside down, the better to reveal them.


I've got the bell housing cleaned up and fitted with new rear support bushings (what a PITA - but I have tools).

In digging through boxes, I found four F&S pressure plates, and five or six discs. I'm going to try and find a rebuilder to bring some or all of that back to RTU status (ready-to-use). I'll need to keep two pressure plates, and the other two will be available for whatever they cost me to overhaul plus a little more to cover the shipping and hassle factor. Does anyone remember the California shop that has done these before?

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

My new local (Reno) machine shop is continuing to impress. They are going through all the large parts for a 59 2000 engine. Those are the early ones with more or less a 1900 bottom end. I've never redone one of those before, and it's interesting to see the small differences compared with a later 102 engine. The rods appear frail (and lighter) than the later 2000 rods, plus, of course, the rear main bearing. I can see why they changed that. Lots of 90 degree angles subject to stress risers back there. Although I've never heard of one blowing up due to the rear main bearing configuration, I think the original engine in 00072 launched a rod through the case, and it would have been an early engine. I expect to receive all the stuff back from the machine shop about the time I'm swiveling this one off to its next station.

By the way, I'm going to end up with an extra early crankshaft, all turned and ready for use, WITH bearings, galleys rodded, and threaded plugs installed. Jay whispered to me that the early crank can be used in both early and late cases, but the late crank won't fit an early case. I knew that, as I tested the idea. Won't fit.

Speaking of extra parts, the engine I'm building now will be mated up with a recently overhauled (L. Dickman jr) trans, fresh clutch, etc, and installed into my display case. Given my 2-year plan to disappear into the Andes, I'll be posting the entire engine and trans kit, in the display case, on BaT, if they'll accept it. I'm building up the engine with an FNM manifold and dual 40 Webers. I can include a Solex manifold if the future owner wants, but although I have them, I'm not sure I'll have time to rebuild a set of carbs to match. There's only so many days remaining....

So many Alfas, so little time.


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My grandson at about six or seven. Quite the helper with backing up blind nuts and bolt heads.
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Same grandson, now a Junior in High School. Varsity football letter from his Sophomore year, soon to be joined by a letter from being in the top Band, including honor band.
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Wants nothing to do with cars, although he expressed an interest in the 916. His dad bought him a dirt bike for Xmas. Oh well, I won't be around if he lives long enough to make great grand kids.
 

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I am happy for you Don and wish that you have safe travels and many new adventures. You have amassed a huge amount of Alfa knowledge and collectible things, Alfa and otherwise. I can't imagine what an undertaking like moving to the Andes would entail but I know it is just 'stuff' and you can't take it with you when you go -to South America or the great beyond!

It is interesting to see how your grandson and son have matured over the last several years that we have been following your posts. Perhaps your grandson has learned from your trials and tribulations to steer clear of the marque and pilot an appliance vehicle like a HoNda or ToYoTa. Each time you mention leaving or moving a project on, there is a similar twinge of sadness.

One of my only 'ABB' regrets is that I have not gotten to meet my Alfa loving, Alcohol drinking, music making, tango dancing, acrobatics flying, airframe mechanic hero. All the best and this Irish Blessing for you:

“May the road rise up to meet you. May the wind always be at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of His hand” and not squeeze his fist too tight.

“May you live as long as you want, and never want as long as you live.”


Don wrote "I've got the bell housing cleaned up and fitted with new rear support bushings (what a PITA - but I have tools). "

Oh, I forgot about the rear support bushings -are these the two on the rear of the transmission? I noticed the last time under the car that mine were shot. I really couldn't tell when driving it but suspected something didn't feel just right. Great to know ahead of time that this job is a 'PITA'...I believe that the standard 105 bushings are the same. What tools do you have/need? I recently pressed in a rear support bushing in the Duetto transmission, used the freezer to chill the bushing and a torch to heat the mount, along with wood blocks and a big hammer and a few smaller blunt punches, etc.

Ciao,
Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hola,

Florida isn’t that far out of the way if you’re flying from Nevada to Colombia, via Texas, at 180 MPH. I prefer very good single malt.

I have a large, red, plastic box of steel bearing and seal press-plates that use the included large bolt to pull, rather than push, a bushing out of its hole. The driver side is straightforward, but the passenger side has a casting obstruction, so I had to modify a “receiving cup” to work. I’ll take some pics.

I bought the kit at HF, and using an impact, it zips the bushings out. I use my hydraulic press to reinsert. Cooling the bushing may help, but I don’t fancy heating the bell housing, if for no other reason than I’ll be handling it in the press.

Even with a light lubrication, it took ALL of the available force of my HF press. Biggest one they offer.

You need to be careful during the insertion. First, line them up carefully. To use the puller you have to cut out the rubber middle of the bushing. Secondly, you don’t want to over-insert. There is the distance tube that goes between the two bushings, and if you go in too far, you may have to start over. Last night I pushed the bushings in until the steel outer ring was flush with the outer edge of the casting. Upon checking, the distance tube had a small clearance. I pressed in one side the smallest fraction possible, and still had a little wiggle room. Did the other side the smallest amount more, and OOPS, distance piece wouldn’t fit between the two bushings. A tiny leverage with a screwdriver, and in it popped.

The steel inner bushing protrudes beyond the outer ring. So, when using a steel plate to press in the bushing assembly, the inner bushing is displaced inward slightly. It will slowly relax after you’re finished pressing. Probably better to bore out the inner hole of the pressing plate to fit over the bushing core, but I didn’t have a drill or ream that big.

I’ll turn 70 this month. I believe I’ve got one more life-defining adventure left in me.

Ready, fire, aim....
 
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Here ya’ go Mark

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Thank you for the tips and techniques Don. I suppose this is a transmission out job as well... Last year I pulled the Duetto engine and transmission and completely rebuilt the engine and about 50 other things. Two years ago it was the 164's turn for the engine and transmission to come out and go back in. Unfortunately, I bought the smallest press and cheapest bushing kit HF makes, neither will do.

My parents owned a vacation home in Santa Rosa Beach, FL and I used to go there often until they sold it a few years ago. After about 17 years, Dad tired of the 6 hour drive each way -every other month. He passed away 5 weeks shy of his 88th birthday this past November after battling bladder cancer for two years. For the time being, I reside just north of Atlanta but have been considering a move myself. Maybe towards a Lake -Lanier, Chickamauga or Guntersville.

I finished my 60th trip around the sun in April and hope for quite a few more.

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you for the tips and techniques Don. I suppose this is a transmission out job as well... Last year I pulled the Duetto engine and transmission and completely rebuilt the engine and about 50 other things. Two years ago it was the 164's turn for the engine and transmission to come out and go back in. Unfortunately, I bought the smallest press and cheapest bushing kit HF makes, neither will do.

My parents owned a vacation home in Santa Rosa Beach, FL and I used to go there often until they sold it a few years ago. After about 17 years, Dad tired of the 6 hour drive each way -every other month. He passed away 5 weeks shy of his 88th birthday this past November after battling bladder cancer for two years. For the time being, I reside just north of Atlanta but have been considering a move myself. Maybe towards a Lake -Lanier, Chickamauga or Guntersville.

I finished my 60th trip around the sun in April and hope for quite a few more.

Mark
“Just north of Atlanta”?

I left my broken heart in Doraville in 1970 (or 71 - memory fades). I later learned she went on to become a devout Southern Baptist. I would have been a challenge for her, but such memories linger.

You want a lake? How about Tahoe? I’ll make you deal on my house, complete with equipped shop and a stash of 102 parts. Total of six garage bays, 2 of which are “the shop”.
 

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Yes, I am near Cobb County International Airport (AKA McCollum Field).

Paul Spruell Alfa was in Chamblee, the next town over from Doraville -probably a 50 mile round trip. I used to drive over to pick up parts for my '74 spider -back in 1980. I got all the parts for my Duetto engine rebuild last year -from Paul and Ruth, 40 years of service!

That sounds like a great offer with the parts and all but after 48 years in GA...I'll probably remain here to harass the devout Southern Baptist girls;-)

Mark
 

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Another “friend” of mine used to work for Spruell. Edith. A lovely person, but we were forever star-crossed.

Comparing GA with NV....

Next to no humidity, or insects..... sunshine about 350 days per year.

Just sayin’
 

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Picked up the early case today. Head almost done, but they’re looking for springs. They didn’t approve of a plain 30 degree valve seat, so did some sort of three angle cut that matched the valves, but made them happier as well.

The shop did more than I might have wished. EVERY plug was removed. I’m ok with rodding out oil galleries, but there’s a bunch of other plugs that don’t need removing. They replaced most, but there’s three I’m going to have to look for, or have made. Otherwise, block beautiful. It’s been rolled into sequence in the line. Need to get it powder coated at some point.

Got the forward trans seal today, so got the bell housing mated up to the trans. Need to put new wires on the reverse light switch.

I spoke to a shop in SoCal today, and will be shipping four pressure plates and six disks down for overhaul. Whatever is left over beyond two will be available if you need, or want, a clutch.
 

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Powder coated ????

Pete
 

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Powder coated ????

Pete
I’ve found it effective to use some modern coatings on the old cars. The “cast iron” 2000 crankcase was built from the medieval-age material as described. The original was painted black, but even though they used a tenacious, and probably highly toxic, primer, they eventually lose some paint and the ferrous starts dancing with O2, and things start looking grim.

The original design generally had the body and other structures evaporate before the engine, but we’re trying to make the survivors last a long while from here. So..... powder coat. Much harder, plus impact and chemical resistant.

The last three cars I restored, a huge amount of stuff got powder. Suspension, entire rear axle housing, numerous brackets, etc. The exhaust manifolds got ceramic-coated. The one on my 59 is about 11 years and 11,000 miles on the road, and looks like freshly cast iron fresh from the washer.

It’s a lot of work to mask, but worth the time and money.
 
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I did not realise you could do an engine block

Pete
 

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There’s no particular reason to on an aluminum block. The CI block in my 916 shows some corrosion, but it’s 22 years old.

Regular masking and wet-painting is ok, and far less expensive. The engine I’m discussing is to be the spare for my own car. The FNM 2300 in it is more fun than a 2,000, and has about 11,000 since rebuild. I doubt I’ll wear it out during my remaining years. So, a “normally” painted block may be sufficient.

BTW, I picked up the repaired crank for the spun-bearing 916 engine. I’ll throw it back together shortly.
 
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