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Discussion Starter #1
I recently got this comment on my YoutTube video, figured I'd share it to verify. "The proper way to start a Spica car is to floor the throttle first and then begin cranking while slowly letting up on the throttle. When the car catches, stop your foot right where it is and let it run for a few seconds. You may have to do this a couple of times but it usually works very well. I learned this from a road test review in a car magazine from back in the day when the car was current and the magazine said that this was told to them as the proper way to start a Spica car directly from the Alfa Romeo people. I've found it works amazingly well and much better than pumping or just flooring the throttle. Your mileage may vary but good luck! " (Sorry if you're the guy that actually commented that, I just want to be 100% sure so I don't break anything)
 

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I touch nothing but the key and it starts every time. Sometimes I don't even get in the car to do it. I guess I've been starting it wrong all these years.
 

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I don't have much to offer this discussion except to say that pumping the throttle pedal does nothing in any sort or fuel injected engine (mechanical or electric), as there aren't accelerator pumps as in a carburetor.

That said, I would bet that a properly tuned and configured SPICA system in good condition requires minimal playing around with the throttle pedal during either cold or warm startup (I have a lot of experience with Bosch timed MFI and CIS, and with Kugelfischer systems in BMW 2002tiis, and this is the case with those).

The most important thing to remember with a timed mechanical fuel injection system like SPICA is it has no means of actually measuring airflow into the engine---even a carburetor has a crude method of metering fuel based upon airflow in the idle and main circuits. The specs in the factory service manual for SPICA, et al, are assuming a 100% bone-stock engine with perfect compression and leakdown, no slop in the throttle linkage and 1960s gasoline---many of these factors have changed in most of these cars! I would imagine you know about Wes Ingram and his SPICA manual, along with numerous other resources among Alfa owners . . . .

But, try your quoted starting method out, and if it works for your specific setup and the engine runs well otherwise, then that is good enough!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
But, try your quoted starting method out, and if it works for your specific setup and the engine runs well otherwise, then that is good enough!
Turn the key, let the fuel system prime, turn it to ignition, usually starts in a couple seconds, though it started to backfire a bit recently, not sure if it got a bit screwy sitting on jack stands for a month or two. Still runs a-OK though. Everything on my engine is original except for spark plugs, header, and I switched out the air box for pod filters. I switched the throttle link ends for stainless steel ones from Centerline, but that's not really something that should matter too much. And belts and coolant/fuel lines, but those need to be replaced every now and then anyways.
 

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In my experience, a stock Spica in proper tune should start this way. Many are not in perfect tune, and many are rebuilt performance ones. Those can have any number of ways to start. Find the way yours starts and stick with it. My performance pump won't start unless I floor it a few seconds after I start cranking. It was set up by an expert.
 

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The Spica systems in our Alfettas always seemed to start easily and run well, even with not being touched, except for the little gas filter and drive belt changes, even in our 78 sedan, which we drove for 180+k miles. I thought the system was entirely adequate for the cars. Performance and mileage never changed worth talking about.

Oh, I do remember that we once had to install a new altitude compensator (?) spring, as the original one broke @ ~130k miles, and set the fuel delivery for ~40,000 feet altitude I guess, lol. Didn't run very well.
 
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