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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi
I just got a new 1977 spider and like to be able to do basic repair and maintenance. What tools and electronic equipment should I have? Thanks.
 

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....all of them! Well, you'll get lots of answers from others here. I guess it depends on what you're working on. But a quality set of 3/8th and 1/2 inch metric sockets and wrenches are always a good place to start! And a can of PB Blaster to loosen all the rusty fasteners.
 

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Some guys get by with nothing more than a cell phone & check book...

What tasks do you want to do? Typical tools are needed for things like spark plug replacement or valve clearance checks. For oil changes you might need a large socket (I prefer 6 point sockets as they are less likely to round over bolt heads). To change the transmission oil you might need a large hex key (I forget the size however...). And if you are going to change the transmission or differential oil make sure you can remove the fill plug before draining the unit. If you want to get underneath safely some ramps &/or sturdy jack stands are required. Never work under a car supported only by a jack!

I got digital copies of the Alfa Shop Manuals on a CD from Car Disc.

IMO, no Alfa tool box is complete with two important things - an internet connection to access the BB and a copy of PapaJam's color coded wire diagrams. To get your own copy of his wire diagrams send him a request via PM, include your email and prepare to be wowed. To help keep the BB alive consider becoming a member. It costs ~ $20/year and I think it is well worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The '77 looks clean, I already have some basic sockets and wrenches for around the house work, ie pumping. Just wandering for car repair what I should be getting. I am not planning to rebuild the car or take the engine apart. Maybe a list of 10 tools that you would not go without.
 

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A magnetic pick-up tool is worth its weight in gold...for fishing out fasteners you've dropped into inaccessible places. Also, I like to have one of those overgrown dentist mirrors on extendable rod, for looking beneath and into those places your head simply won't fit.
A decent trouble light, preferably on a retractable reel, is also a good investment.
I'm with GHNL on the 6-point vs 12 point sockets. Don't forget a few extensions and a universal swivel joint while you are at it.
A good set of metric combination wrenches...must have, right after the sockets.
A 12 volt test light and probe is useful if you are probing the electrical system...as is a decent multimeter. But now we're getting extravagant...
 

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Italian = extravagant.

Get a Craftsman catelog at a Craftsman store. Wander down through the tool section. Craftsman sells tools for the common man, and I believe a decent place to start with comparison shopping.

If you have a need to repair something, then get the tools necessary to make the repair.

We wish you well in your Alfa ownership.

Don

PS DON'T FORGET TO TAKE PICTURES.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
You guys are hilarious. I will get some pictures of the car up. Still snow around here.
 

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If you use a Haynes manual this will come in handy:

Haynes: Rotate anticlockwise.
Translation: Clamp with visegrips then beat repeatedly with hammer counterclockwise.

Haynes: This is a snug fit.
Translation: You will skin your knuckles!

Haynes: This is a tight fit.
Translation: Not a hope in hell, bucko!

Haynes: As described in Chapter 7...
Translation: That'll teach you not to read through before you start; now you are looking at scary photos of the inside of a gearbox...

Haynes: Pry...
Translation: Hammer a screwdriver into...

Haynes: Undo...
Translation: Go buy a BIG can of WD40...

Haynes: Retain small spring...
Translation: "Jeez what was that, it nearly took my eye out!"

Haynes: Press and rotate to remove bulb...
Translation: "OK - that's the glass part off, now use some good pliers to dig out the base...

Haynes: Lightly...
Translation: Start off lightly and build up till the veins on your forehead are throbbing...

Haynes: Routine maintenance...
Translation: If it isn't broken... it's about to be!

Haynes: One spanner rating.
Translation: Your mother could do this... so how did you manage to botch it up?

Haynes: Two spanner rating.
Translation: Now you may think that you can do this because two is a low, tiny, little number... but you also thought the wiring diagram was a map of the Tokyo underground.

Haynes: Three spanner rating.
Translation: OK - but don't expect us to ride in it afterwards!

Haynes: If not, you can fabricate your own special tool like this...
Translation: Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

Haynes: Compress...
Translation: Squeeze with all your might, jump up and down on, swear at, throw at the garage wall, then search in the dark corner of the garage for while muttering "Piece of [email protected]" repeatedly under your breath.

Haynes: Inspect...
Translation: Squint at really hard and pretend you know what you are looking at, then declare in a loud knowing voice to your wife, "Yep, as I thought, it's broke!"

Haynes: Carefully...
Translation: You are about to cut yourself.

Haynes: Retaining nut...
Translation: Yes, that's it, that big spherical blob of rust.

Haynes: Get an assistant...
Translation: Prepare to humiliate yourself in front of someone you know.

Haynes: Turning the engine will be easier with the spark pugs removed.
Translation: However, starting the engine afterwards will be much harder. Once that sinking pit of your stomach feeling has subsided, you can start to feel deeply ashamed as you gingerly refit the spark plugs.

Haynes: Refitting is the reverse sequence to removal.
Translation: But you swear in different places.

Haynes: Prise away plastic locating pegs...
Translation: Snap off...

Haynes: Using a suitable drift...
Translation: The biggest nail in your tool box isn't a suitable drift!

Haynes: Apply moderate heat...
Translation: Placing your mouth near it and huffing isn't moderate heat.

Haynes: Index
Translation: List of all the things in the book but the thing you want to do!
 

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...i like the ' retaining nut' :):)..funny
 

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You don't want the long stick with the mirror man!!! Your just gonna find more places to clean!!! You'll need a good metric socket set. Metric combination wrenches. Jack, and jack stands. Get a good set of stands with some heft to them, remember it's your head under there. I have a set of Craftsman. Feeler guages, spark plug socket, and sooner or later a torque wrench. I seem to use the wrenches more than the sockets. You can tear the whole engine apart with a 10mm,13mm, and a 17mm wrench. Metric allens, and a pliers set. The tool I use most though is the collective knowledge of the BB members.
 

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I like to have at least two each of the most common wrenches because sometimes you need one on each end of the bolt, and sometimes a socket won't fit in the space available.
 

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Looks like the PO really enjoyed taking care of that little jewel.

Keep in mind that in the 50s 60s and 70s, there were grease monkey type maintance shops that commonly greased wheel bearings, steering columns, drive shafts, as well as changed fluids and flushed carbs.

Today's cars are different in many ways, so the shops have adapted to using OBD II computers and the typical 143 point inspection (which just means they look at what you are comcerned about).

We see now why you ask this question.

Before I work on my car, I do a lot of research on this site with the search engine and read about the procedure and tools being used.

For instance, bearing pullers are nice to have when servicing that 5-10K mile turn up listed in the maintance schedule of the wheels. Funnels are nice to have for fluid changes. Metric wrenches, sockets, and ratches are a must. Jacks and ramps are really handy for inspection and work (and the Craftsman models will get you by without breaking the bank). Pliers, wire stripers, and multimeters are basic for electrical trouble shooting.

Keep at it. Buy what you need - when you need it IMHO.
 

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Tools List

I'm a do-it-your-self-er, that is a long way from a pro, so here is my list:

-Triple-A Plus (1st 100 miles free) towing service!

-Yellow Platex gloves; $2.50 or so. These are thick latex with a flocked lining to absorb perspiration. I bought a pair for changing the motor mounts on my Spider last week, and they actually survived repeatedly sticking my hands under a Bosch injected intake plenum, including several times getting hung up on the throttle linkage.

-Floor mat to lie on; I bought a carpet covered rubber mat at Lowe's for about $20; U.S. made too boot!

-Foam pad to kneel on!

-Deep sockets for 10, 13, 17. By the way, Sears sockets are U.S. made.

-A basic set of metric sockets and wrenches.

-A set of 1/4 inch drive small sockets (under 12mm).

-A small combination 1/4-3/8 socket wrench, with swiveling head.

-Various length extensions.

-Universal joints in 1/4, 3/8, & 1/2.

-Ratcheting wrenches for 10, 13, 17.

-Flashlight on flexible wand; very helpful for lighting up those bolts you can't see!

-Mirror with extension.

-3 Ton jack stands.

-Sears has a low profile 2-1/2 ton hydraulic jack for about $60 which I believe will fit under the oil sump; cheap!

-I also use a 2 ton small hydraulic jack, the type you can store in a trunk.

-Home made pizza and several glass of wine to celebrate an Alfa repair job gone well!
 

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Trained (ex)Professional, , 1953-2018 RIP
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What?? Screwdrivers don't rate?

All good posts with good tools to have. I think 2Tomato said it all though; buy what you need when you need it. Most pro mechanics I know, including myself, did not start with everything.
 
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