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Discussion Starter #1
So I have a 87 Milano platinum that I have had for about 6 months now and it's starter problem has not been fixed with a rebuild.

The problem is this: when starting it just hums. not quietly, but like an electric motor under stress. So i turn the key back to stand-by or off, wait a 20sec or so then try again, Usually resulting in humming again.

It takes 5-10 attempts to get it to start turning over, and even then I have to pump the gas slightly to get it started. Once it starts it runs more-or-less fine.

So after the first rebuild failed I had my mechanic friend, who has been helping me with the issue, had it rebuild a second time, which also failed.

We finally got somewhere though because if the starter is say, on a workbench being tested, It seems to run fine and have the correct voltage.

But once in the car, the starter gets about 9 volts. the addition of a ignition relay got it up to 10 volts. So somewhere along the line 2 volts go missing.

Here are the details;
-Starter unit is fine
-*can* start normally, but i would put this at less than 10%
-Battery has a steady 12.3 volts.
-the ignition switch has been ruled out

Earlyer today I went through the engine bay to see If i could make any progress and these are the parts worth shareing;
-Big grounds are firmly attached
-The 2 small grounds on the passenger valve cover are firmly attached, but can be rotated slightly if I use force
-All the connections on the ignition coil are a little loose, but still seem connected
-1 connecter which connects to a little box under the ignition coil is a little frayed, but not disconnected.

So thats what can be said so far, Any advice would be great as this issue is becoming a real headache.

I can post a picture of "the little box under the ignition coil" if need be.

Thanks in advance for any help.
 

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I would start by replacing all of those frayed or loose wires, wires that seem good can lie and something that is connected when idle can be unconnected with the road. Also source out a new bosch starter from a BMW at the wrecker,they should work well.
Wires being frayed will give you a lose of voltage and ALFAs are very sensitive to resistence and voltages. The shields the put on cables is so that the specified volts will flow with no lose or with resitence depending on your cables, so always start with fresh wiring before trying to source out the starter or any other problem.

Hope it helps and you could also try some inox mx-3 on your connections.

you said that you tested the starter.....Did you test you lines to see if they are flowing.
 

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It takes 5-10 attempts to get it to start turning over, and even then I have to pump the gas slightly to get it started.
...and NO PUMPING THE GAS! :eek:

:eek:
 

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OR you will have a nicley Popped plenum and a fat dent in your 48mm hood....the dent of shame!

A properly tuned alfa will turn over in under 2 sec with no gas pedal.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
been getting through the connections, and I decided I might as well clean the grounds.

as for pumping the gas, I have read many times that it is a bad thing, but on the few occasions I don't; Then engine just keeps turning over untill I do.
 

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um is your fuel pump working and your shure its not a clogged fuel filter.....?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Im pretty sure that having to give it gas is somehow a result of this starter issue because I got it to start normally yesterday (twice!) and by that I mean no humming and no giving it gas.

I also measures the volts as it did this problem. I measure from the relay output

1st: just under 12v
2nd: about 11V
3rd: less than 11V

after these measurements I checked the battery again and it was still steady at about 12.3 / 12.4 volts
 

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I would imagine if the engine were turning over, you wouldn't be able to hear a "humming" sound. I would take a stab and say the solenoid is not engaging the starter gear. Probably spinning, which is the humming sound you hear. If it is engaging, perhaps it's binding. Otherwise, if everything in order and it's engaging, it may not be pulling sufficient amps to turn the motor over.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well yesterday a thicker ground wire and a thicker power to relay wire were swapped in as well as a higher amp rated relay, and the ground was moved from the frame behind the passenger headlight to the grounding point on the passenger side valve cover.

All of yesterday this seemd to fix it, after a few more days of use i will post on how successful it is.
 

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good to hear man.....cables are less than starters
 
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