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So I decided to tackle replacing the windshield washer nozzles on my 91. Thanks to posts on the board, I got the cowl cover off easily and replaced both nozzles along with the hose all the way to the reservoir. My wipers were slow and jittery and I figured this was a good time to lube the joints and clean out any hardened grease in the motor gear box. Good so far, got it all removed and cleaned out the paste in the gear box. Also cleaned and lubed the post assemblies. The ball joints seem sticky but in solid condition.
1st question: can they be disassembled to clean and Lube inside the rubber boots? I don't see any way to get them apart non-destructively. Was thinking grease in a small squeeze tube to "inject" past the boot edge? Maybe? But that doesn't clean out any old residue.
2nd question: When reinstalling the cowl cover and trim, do I need to clean out the existing sticky weather sealant and replace? The stuff under the SS trim strip is what I'm referring to. It doesn't seem to really seal anything? Maybe it's just to hold the trim across the middle of the curved span.
Any thoughts on either/both questions greatly appreciated.
Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks Eric
I picked up a couple "Handyman Syringes" this AM at the local hardware. I should be about to slip some Lithium grease in there after cleaning them out a bit.
Bob
 

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don't put it back till the ball joints move freely and smoothly!

as for that sticky stuff, my car had none of that, but personally I wouldn't disturb it just put the chrome strip back on once the cowl covering has been slipped back into those clips (that is a darn fiddly job with just one pair of hands!)

Spray the clips under the screen rubber with some lubricant to stop them rusting.
Be careful putting the cowl cover back on, sometimes the screen wash nipples and hoses get trapped between that sheet metal and when you fit it into those clips and press down to do up the 4 tiny bolts under the rubber hood seal, you bust off the tiny plastic clips on the centre (plastic) part of the cowl, and it is not repairable...it is made of finest italian rubbish;)

I just replaced my wiper motor with a new one (last year I cleaned out the old one, like you just did, was a little bit better but still not great, it juddered on a dryish screen)
The new wiper motor is about 50% better on slow speed, no judders on intermittant, fast speed is a great improvement, but certainly no BMW!
(Edit) took car out for run and tried the wipers in the drizzling rain, they are actually a lot better with the new motor....all my testing etc during the job must have drained the battery a bit. They now wipe very strongly compared to my old motor. I was lucky to find a NOS motor (still in alfa box) for 50$ in the UK, where the seller thought it was for an alfasud! I did open it to check the grease was still 'nice and greasy' and it was, to my amazement!
 

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I don't see any way to get them apart non-destructively.
No, you can't take them apart non-destructively.

ghnl said:
I haven't tried this on our Spider but in the GTV6 I added a relay so that the switched circuits of the fuse box get full system power instead of having the electrons needing to pass through the ignition switch.
On early 105's, the current to the windshield wipers doesn't pass through the ignition switch. That is, you can operate your wipers with the key in the "off" position. Unless this was changed by the time Keemosabe's spider was built in 1991, adding a relay wouldn't do anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks all. The syringe worked perfectly to inject the grease into the ball joints. Everything moving super smooth. Mechanism and motor are back in place. Just need to snug up the bolts and reconnect the wiring. Appreciate the caution on the washer hoses getting jammed up and causing the mountings to break on the plastic vent piece. Hopefully I'll have it back together tomorrow.
 

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My S4 wipers only work with IGN on.
 

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Wipers only work with the ignition 'on' in our 1984 Spider.
OK, sounds like Alfa changed the WW circuit between the 1960's and 1980's. So inserting a relay probably would provide more current to the WW motor.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
All back together, Wipers work much better both slow and fast speed. Tried them only on dry windshield, no chattering smooth and quiet. Thanks to all for the tips and advice. I ended up using a lightweight grease made by Penn, (the fishing tackle manufacturer) Comes in a tub, its blue (red would have been a better color! ha). Anyway, it works great on reels, and I figured it should work well on the ball joints, the shafts and the gear box. Seems to be perfect. Tried to upload a couple 6-7 second videos of the wipers running, but the MOV format from my iPhone seems an issue.
 

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First of all, great job- nice little DIY chore.

Did you ever notice a voltage drop on the gauge before you lubed things up? Mine work fine, but the voltage drop is horrible. I can't run the headlights and the wipers at the same time and still get a good charge on the battery, and my lights have relays.

Also, I need to replace all of the washer hose under the cowl- it's good to hear that it's easily accessed. I gotta get in there and take care of bidness, sounds like!
 

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...voltage drop is horrible. I can't run the headlights and the wipers at the same time and still get a good charge on the battery, and my lights have relays.
measure across the battery with a voltmeter how many Volts the alt is putting out at say 1500 rpm with no electrics on? (dash gauge is kinda unreliable for this)

and again, when lights and wipers and blower on?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks John533i. It went pretty smoothly. Don't know about a voltage drop....I never drove it at night in the rain....only at night or in the rain.
Do pay particular attention to the hoses when reassembling as Spiderserie4 says. They tend to want to get jammed up between the center plate and the cowl vent which is plastic. Push too hard and you will bust off the mounts for the vent and that's trouble for sure. One tool I used that was particularly helpful in reassembly was a set of plastic interior panel tools. You can work the last few clips into alignment easily and the plastic doesn't tear up the paint on the edge of the metal cowl cover. Still a bit of a patience test, but, I did it on my own, no extra hands. Also, I ran black vacuum hose from the pump and tank up to and into the cowl cavity. It's too heavy to use to the nozzles, (yea, I tried it first). There is a black T fitting to feed from the main run to each nozzle that is a bit bulky too. I ended up using semi-stiff plastic ice maker tubing from the T in each direction to the nozzles. I heated it and bent 90s to connect into the nozzles close so the fit under the cowl was much better. And I relocated the T from center above the plate that covers the vent intake, off to the left side of the center plate where there is plenty of room in he cavity. And then the tubing to the left nozzle makes a loop bend around back to the nozzle with a 90. Got that?!?! I should have photo'd it. I can sketch it if that helps.
 

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And I relocated the T from center above the plate that covers the vent intake, off to the left side of the center plate where there is plenty of room in he cavity
that's a good and simple idea!
That T in the middle sits right over the metal plate and causes all the trouble because if you don't have it exactly right it jams between said plate and flimsy plastic vent....push down the cowl and the plastic vent is pushed up busting off the plastic screwclips....moving the T out to one side, and the problem is cured.
:)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Yea, I'll bet the same designer/engineer (no offense to any) that came up with the fragile plastic vent mount system figured a T fitting 3X the diameter of the tubing would be "just perfect" in that tiny space. After a couple failed attempts at re-assembly, I thought why not shift it left and use the big empty space vs. that tiny channel between the cover and center plate. Hope the idea helps others.
 
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