Yes that was what I thought too from the photo, but when I actually inspected the engine in person those things don't show up. Also the underlying alloy casting surface behind the numbers has not been filed off or tampered with in any way that I can see.Both the "0" and "2" in "102" in "AR00102" seem to be a different (wider and rounder) font than in other positions ("AR00" and "09215").
Compared to other engines (the picture below is from a 1961 Spider engine that's for sale here), the spacing to the asterisks between the tipo designation and the serial number seems to be off as well.
I've compared it another 102 engine block and the lettering looks very similiar. I also previously checked for signs of a 105 block switch but there is no indication of that, quite a lot of small casting differences when you start to examine them closely side by side.Check the AR in front of the engine number more closely, the shape of these letters is very distinct in the original stampings and cannot be found in the usual stamp sets.
Maybe it used to be a 105 engine which has the engine number at the gearbox flange and a blank field where the current stamping sits and got 'converted'
As a matter of interest what is the chasis number of the car?All very strange. We contacted the Alfa museum documentation people but they have no records of the chassis number of the car it came from or this engine number.
MikeThis patch in Sprint production was such a mix up, they were changing engine types, then there was that short lived designation of 10104 & 10105 for the US spec Sprints & Spiders, the Series I's had just morphed into the Series II's, at Pininfarina the LWB Spiders arrived 500 cars earlier than the Parts Manual says they did.... fun & games
Hi Joe, I tried taking some photos from a few different angles and the one below was the best I could get. The engine is complete and working. I've attached a photo of it below and another number I found. The car was originally sold into the Italian domestic market I believe and imported to Australia in 2013 with this engine.Interesting puzzle.
Since Alfa have confirmed this as an unknown number, it would seem that there are two possibilities left. Firstly, it started as an unstamped replacement block to which a full but incorrect serial has been added. I don’t believe this to be true; most of the numbers and letters are close enough in appearance and alignment to be factory stampings.
The one exception to me is that doublestruck “2” which does not match the second one or any of the stamping I have seen, including my own.
The other possibility is that it is a production block whose stamping has been altered for some reason. Looking at possible scenarios the most likely would seem to be that a 1960 Berlina block AR00100 has been altered into AR00102.
I’ll be the first to admit that the photo does not show any sign of an over stamp, but I can’t think of any other change that makes sense. There would not be much point making a 106 block into a 102, and anything else would need a restamp on two of the digits.
Is there any chance that examination under different lighting will show something we can’t see in the present shot?
What can you tell us about the engine itself? Is it a bare block or complete engine? Any history?
I know that 750/101 engines are not common in Australia.
Chassis number is 169077, which places it in the correct range for 1961 (168734 to 171903 from what I have read on the Interwebs). Engine is 09215 but the known range for 1961 is 23836 to 31542.As a matter of interest what is the chasis number of the car?
Maybe a clue to what Greig said about the car being one of those in the Series I/II transition: