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My project for the last three days has been getting the red 75 3 litre back on the road after two years in the garage so that my son can start driving it. I got the alternator reconditioned and fitted. Getting those things off a 75 is not easy. I fitted a new piece of hose on the crankcase breather, re-fitted the throttle linkage, changed the coolant and cleaned out the expansion bottle and changed the oil. I siphoned out 40 litres of old fuel so as to avoid possible bad running and clogged injectors. Today I will put in 20 litres of 98 octane ULP and hope it fires up and runs with no leaks etc, then I will give it a much needed wash. It is hard to believe it is nearly ready to go after all this time.
 
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I have just spent all day achieving pretty well nothing on our 164. The driver's side, (RH), front window was stopping part way up and making a buzzing noise so I pulled the trim off to have a look. I came to the conclusion that the cog on the motor must have a couple of teeth missing, so I had to put the trim back on, due to not having a spare winder around. Getting the trim back on proved to be a headache because one of the armrest captive nuts kept falling out due to a bent tab caused by the screw having a slightly damaged thread and being too tight. The tab was about to break off when I tried to straighten it up so I had to get another nut off the 75 wreck. Then the plastic connectors for the speaker wires refused to tuck up out of the way to allow the trim to move into place. I fixed that problem by removing the terminals from the plastic connectors and putting them together with insulation tape around them, thereby allowing more room for the trim to slide in. I put a bit of gaffer tape behind the captive nut to stop it falling out and also put some over the door trim plastic clip to stop that falling off as well. Eventually I managed to get the trim back on again. It will have to come off again when I get another winder assembly from somewhere. That was half the day gone.
Next I decided to reassemble the rear window switch from which I lost one of the little spring loaded pins for months, only to find it again when I wasn't looking for it. It was sitting on the bench next to the vise all the time. I thought it had gone to the moon as small springs have a habit of doing. I don't know if any of you guys have tried to reassemble a series one switch, but the little rockers inside have a nasty habit of falling on their side when you pop the switch back together. After what seemed like 200 attempts I got the thing back together and working. All I achieved after all this was the ability to raise and lower the rear left hand window.

The 164 was not my favourite car today.
 

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Good luck Alex. I don't envy you.
 

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Hi Alex. Yes I put a brand new window regulator in the 164. I got it from The Spare Place.
That car reviewer must have been driving a dud 164. They are one of the most stable cars in a straight line that I have driven - certainly light years away from any Holden or Ford at speed. From 100 kph onwards they really hunker down as if they are thinking that now you really mean business.
 

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I have spent the entire weekend doing Alfa related things. We have just had the annual Italian Carnevale festival here in Adelaide and our Alfa club put on a display of 16 cars. As Vice president it was my job to organise the display and it was very successful. Along with our club the Ferrari club held their annual concours and the Fiat, Ducatti, Vespa and Scuderia Italia clubs had cars and bikes there. The local Alfa/Fiat/Ferrari/Maserati dealer had a large display as well. Carnevale has won the best cultural festival in Australia award for two years in row, so it is an important show. We have a huge Italian population here in South Australia. Italian is, in fact, the most spoken language in Australia, apart from English. It was great fun soaking up the atmosphere, eating Italian food, hearing the lovely Italian language being spoken around us and talking Italian cars all weekend.
 

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I changed the oil and filter on the 75 Potenziata, ready for the trip to Frances in the south-east of the state, on Friday. We are going there for a folk music festival at which my band is playing. It is 330km away and takes about four hours to get there. I am looking forward to seeing how the car goes with its new Lodge 25 HLS spark plugs and new oxygen sensor. It is purring like a kitten now and has picked up noticeable power. My wife will be driving the 164 down there later in the day. I changed the oil on that one on Monday. This will be the second time since January that the two cars have been down to the South East. I have discovered that it is easier to take the whole air filter off to gain access to the oil filter on the 75, rather than trying to get at it through the small gap between the hoses and stuff.
 

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It is nice to hear that you have the Spider on the road Alex. What are you going to do with that car ultimately?
 

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Joined AROC-USA today. Figured after about 10 years and two Alfas, it's time.
Congratulations! If it is anything like AROCA(South Australia) you will have a great time with some wonderful people. I am writing this having just got home from our monthly meeting, so, apart from driving my Potenziata, (which I do every day), that is my Alfa related thing today. I am Vice president this year and really enjoy serving on the committee. We watched the "Victory by Design" DVD for entertainment this evening. There are some awesome cars on that film.
 

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There were a few good actual dealers in the US, and my friend says, also in France, but far and few between.
I consider myself very lucky to be living here in Adelaide because we have at least seven very good Alfa mechanics, including the dealer. On top of that we have two Alfa parts specialists. My mechanic of choice is as good as the best you would find anywhere in the world. With his help my Potenziata is steadily getting to tip top condition. Last week he got the isostatic linkage nice and tight, like new and while he was under there, he got the whole exhaust system properly lined up and level so it is not vibrating against the underneath of the gearshift area or hitting the back axle. The car is as smooth as silk now. The next task is to cure the pinging problem under load, which is probably due to the extra high compression my engine has, along with the porting that the mechanic did when he rebuilt the engine. It is not happening all the time, but needs to be fixed. I am getting a club member, who is one of the best car computer and fuel injection guys in Australia, to fix that next week.

Our Alfas are all daily drivers. The trick, I think, is to keep them properly maintained by someone who knows how to look after them. The trouble is that old ones like mine have often suffered from incompetent mechanics messing them up. This leads to people wrongly thinking Alfas are unreliable.

Anyway, today I drove the Potenziata on something like an 80 km round trip from home, to Uni, to band practise on the other side of town and back home. It is fun to drive: even in the city. Every day is an Alfa day for me.
 

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What did I do Alfa related today? Reminisce about other cities I've visited, and the number of Alfas in them, perhaps to my uninformed surprise.

Ah, I remember Adelaide. We were there in November a few years ago, when some of the streets lined with Jacaranda trees were in full bloom. Interesting city to drive into from the east, as I remember driving through a high pass through much highway construction and dropping down into the city. Very pretty. Later we drove up to the Barossa valley to do wine tasting.

Have to admit, surprised to find so many Alfas in some of these areas, but my fault for not knowing more about these fine cities in other parts of the world, such as Hobart, Tasmania. Surprised to see Alfas there. Mea culpa.

Maybe next year, if things go according to plan...
We know Christmas is coming when the Jacarandas bloom. Somebody wrote a song about that a few years ago. We are having what has become known as "Mad March" at the moment, with the city buzzing with festivals and events. We have had the V8 Supercar race, Womad world music festival and the Festival of Arts and the Fringe Festival, which are still going. Let me know if you come to Adelaide again and I will be happy to show you around and take you to a club meeting or event.
 

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My wife, son and I went on the Alfa Club coffee/observation run today in my Potenziata. We had a great turn out, including a new member with a new Giulietta 1750 Turbo and one of the several Montreals we have in the club. We started off with coffee in the bakery, seen in the photo below and went on a great drive through the hills, finishing up a couple of hours later at the new development at Port Adelaide, for more coffee and food. You can see some of the cars in the photo. Mine is on the far right with my wife and son next to it.

The Giulietta looked really nice driving along the hills roads. I am getting used to the headlights now and think they are a great looking car. The guy that owns it was looking at various European cars and fell in love with the Giulietta and joined the club. He has put his name down at the dealer for a 4c when they come here. We are all looking forward to that.
 

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Getting your exhaust system level as per factory is a bit of an art as I discovered when my mechanic, Luigi Amori, straightened up my Potenziata system the other day. He says they are often messed up by exhaust guys and has developed an eye for getting them right. He got mine level all the way, higher and no longer rubbing on the heat shroud and centre sub frame. He also got my big tailpipe centred. It is amazing how much smoother the car feels now.
 

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My wife and I took the Potenziata on a club cruise through the Adelaide Hills to a town called Tunkillo. It was perfect Adelaide autumn weather, with a temperature of about 29 degrees C. We had a show and shine on the grass next to the pub. Most people went home after lunch, but we decided to drive to Mannum on the Murray River and back home the long way, covering 225km altogether.
 

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Hi Alex! The 166 sounds nice. I drove my lovely Potenziata to uni and back today, which is a round trip of around 68km. It makes any drive fun. I always look forward to driving it. My son and I took it to Mallala for the six hour race on Sunday, where our club had three teams entered. We are getting 30 drivers and 27 cars in the sprints these days, which is a third of all the cars of various makes entered.
 

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Drove down to the shops a few minutes ago. Fun as always in the Potenziata.
 

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I took the Potenziata on the 100 km return run through the southern hills to my brother's place today and blew the cobwebs out of it and myself. The thing is an absolute joy to drive and is flying now that the computer map is sorted. There is nothing like the sound of the V6 and the thrill when the "S" cams kick in.
 

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I drove our new 2008 159 TI 2.4 JTDM Sportwagon 860 kilometres from Melbourne, (where I bought it yesterday), to our place in Adelaide. I left Melbourne yesterday at about 11 am and drove to Millicent in the south east of South Australia to visit my good mate and BB member, alphie75 and stayed overnight at his house. We spent the evening and this morning talking Alfas and looking at each other's cars. I drove the rest of the way home today. The car is an absolute joy to drive and a thing of beauty. It has only done 59,000 kilometres. The 2.4 diesel has some pretty decent grunt. The TI model has all the bells and whistles with 19" wheels, body kit, huge Brembo brakes and lowered sports suspension. Like all Alfas you just want to get in and drive it. It is going to be our family car and my wife's daily driver. The photos below were taken along the way.
 

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Congrats! I see these in Germany all the time when I am over there and I just swoon.
Thanks Larry. I forgot to add that it has the six speed Qtronic auto transmission. It is by far the best auto I have experienced. The gear changes are super smooth and fast and it has a sport mode as well as a position where you can change gears manually with the stick or with paddles on the steering column, both of which work beautifully.
 

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What is the purpose of yellow headlights?
 

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It amazes me how once reputable companies get things made in China to save costs and undertake no quality control whatsoever. The Chinese can make very high quality stuff if you sit on them, but will make crap if you let them, because that way they make more profit. They can see these stupid western business people coming a mile off. The trouble is you and I are the ones who suffer.
 
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