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'66 Sprint GT, '67 Duetto, '70 BMW 2800CS
12,920 Posts
That sound has always meant weak battery or bad connection for me. I would double check cable connections to battery and connections to starter.
Yup, I second that. That intermittant sound usually means insufficient current to the starter. Your battery voltage may test OK, but the most likely problem is that not enough current is running through the starter. Could be a bad battery, could be a poor ground or other connection. How's your engine-chassis ground strap?

mn1 said:
the solenoid has 2 spade terminals but only one is used?? There is a remote chance I have connected to the wrong one
The solenoid has 2 spade terminals. One connects to the ignition/starter switch, and provides +12 to the solenoid to turn on the starter. The other provides a signal to an accessory that needs to know when the starter is operating. An example of such an accessory is the cold start solenoid on a Spica pump. The Bosch starter solenoid is used in a wide range of cars - for many, that second terminal is just left unconnected.

You seem to be telling us that you have worked on the the solenoid wiring. If you may have mixed up the two low-current connectors, then yea, perhaps that's your problem. I'd try putting the wire on the one that's now disconnected, and see what happens. Before doing this, you should use an ohm meter to verify that that terminal isn't a direct path to ground (it probably isn't, though the resistance could be low). Or, you could try to read the markings on those terminals - though they'll probably be hard to see with the starter installed.

But, after saying all that, the first thing I would do would be to run a set of jumpers between your Alfa and a known good car.
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