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Discussion Starter #1
He just sent me an email via AROC-USA website and I asked him to join us here. Let's welcome him when he signs on and see what we can do to get his timing belt verified and changed along with his serpentine belt issue.

Here is his email text to me:
"Hi There,

I recently bought my first Alfa, a 1991 164L , and am a bit lost on how to get started. I’ve worked on assorted German cars for about ten years as a hobby, but my 164’s accessory belt snapped on my drive home from picking it up yesterday, and I’m not sure where to begin. I’ve ordered the complete DVD for the 164 from CarDisc International, and I believe the belt split due to age (I looked at it after removing it from the engine bay and it was clearly rotted) but beyond looking for parts information I’ve got this feeling I’ve gotten in over my head in something and trying to stay afloat. Any advice would be greatly appreciated on parts vendors, resources, etc. Did I just burn [x]-dollars? Everything else on the car is fantastic, and the 200 miles or so I put on it were an absolute joy, but in reviewing the timing belt replacement procedure (I’m not even sure how to properly examine the timing belt given the elaborate process for replacing it) I’m hoping for some reassurance towards a car I’ve wanted to own for many years. Thanks!

David xxxxxx"
 

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I think the first thing he should do is read both the Buyer's Guides.

Then do an assessment of the condition of the car and what it's going to need. Just like eating an elephant . . . . one bite at a time.

I think he'll be impressed by the depth, breadth, and ease of the information and help he can get here.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I think the first thing he should do is read both the Buyer's Guides.

Then do an assessment of the condition of the car and what it's going to need. Just like eating an elephant . . . . one bite at a time.

I think he'll be impressed by the depth, breadth, and ease of the information and help he can get here.
I gave him the links to us on BB to get him started.
 

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As an owner of only a year and a half, I can say it's been a great hobby car. My time to work on it is a little limited, and I don't want to subject it to all kinds of weather, so it's not a daily driver for me. I'm not a professional mechanic, and I've seen people do in a weekend what takes me a couple weeks. I don't get too discouraged because I look forward to making it better and driving it again. Currently it's been up on stands for about 3-4 weeks for tbelt, cam Orings, accessory belts, and a couple other surprises.

If you have the time, ambition, a few bucks, and some creativity you'll do alright! Don't be turned off by an accessory drive belt failure. While you're in there replacing that, it's a good time to get into the timing belt and tensioner. Maybe the water pump depending on the history. The info here on all topics is very thorough and I've never seen a question go unanswered.

If it's like mine, you will encounter surprises. Rust has been a pain for me, especially with the rear suspension. You have to be careful with all fasteners into aluminum, and previous owners and mechanics may have already messed that up for you. Some jobs suck and some are fine. I find that's the same for any car.

Some parts and tools are hard to find, but the jobs always seem to get done.
 

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Welcome David......

Like you I dove into the Alfa 164 quagmire.
Unlike you I thought I knew it all having owned and maintained much earlier Alfa's.

This Forum is the best and I compare it to two BMW 323 forums, two Prelude Forums, Odyssey forum and occasionally a Neon forum.

Just take the time to search and read and you will find everything you need.

CARDISC is also essential and above average when it comes to workshop manuals.....BMW and Honda are atrocious and Neon falls back on Haynes which is rudimentary stuff at best....

You are amongst friends.

Neville.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Seems like David has taken the weekend off and not joined BB yet. Like I said above he emailed mailed me Friday through my tech advisor link on AROC-USA website.
 

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maybe he's "afraid" of us!! I know I'm afraid of me @ times!! Anyway, I cant recall how I found this "place" a few years back but I am sure glad I did. Youz guyz are great!! ciao, jc
 

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maybe he's "afraid" of us!! I know I'm afraid of me @ times!! Anyway, I cant recall how I found this "place" a few years back but I am sure glad I did. Youz guyz are great!! ciao, jc
I think he is off the email clock until Monday at work.
 

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Thank you all much! I went ahead and ordered a Cardisc DVD on the 164, along with two boxes worth of parts from Alfissimo international (timing belt, water pump, new tensioner, new coolant lines, accessory belt, etc.) Looks like working on all of this is vaguely like accessing the important bits of my Boxster's engine (wheel wells.) The good news is cosmetically things look OK (unless you shine a flash light on the paint, you can tell where the front ends' been repainted, it's nice, but the original paint has a brownish hue) and it was a joy to drive! I'm part of the way to getting to the timing belt (haven't pulled the engine mounts yet to lower the tranny onto my transmission jack) but I wanted to get my parts in before I continued.
 
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