Archive for the 'Engine' Category

Oil change

Sunday, May 2nd, 2010

I didn’t want to start disassembling anything this close to the NSK spring meet, so I decided to change the oil today instead. It’s been three years since the last oil change, and that’s anything but good, even though mileage on the old oil was just over 5,000 kms (3,100 miles). I used an eight liter can designed for motorcycles to hold the oil as it came gushing out of the oil tank. It has an extra hole to let the air escape and it became completely full. Emptying the oil tank is a mess, so I had cardboard covering the whole area and a oil suction mat on top of that. There was an extra ~2 litres in the sump, and then some decilitres in the oil filter. The new oil is the same as last time; Agip Super Motor Oil 20W/50, but the filter was a Mann W920/80 instead of the Purolator L20081. The look exactly the same, although the Mann filter is painted a cool-looking black instead of white 😉

Later on the test trip, the oil pressure gauge was actually moving between idle pressure and driving pressure, something it have never done before. The car currently rests in the garage so it can dispense of the oil drops hanging from behind the front spoiler. As I said it’s a mess changing the oil. No wonder there is no rust around the right front side of the car!

Note: the drain plug on the oil tank takes a 14 mm Allen key on my car. This is apparently unusual, but the plug may be changed during the last 40 years.


Montreal update – July 2007

Saturday, July 28th, 2007

About time I did an update on the Montreal side of things, isn’t it? It’s been a while since anything was written here about La Tempesta, and a few things have happened to and with it.

At Gjøvik Trafikkstasjon, 31 May 2007The biggest news is of course that the Montreal is now properly registered with the authorities. It happened 31 May. The inspector at Gjøvik Trafikkstasjon weren’t very interested in the technical and safety bits on the car after discovering that it had been driven there on its own, that it was apparently in good shape and cared for, and not least, that it was more than 30 years old. Cars that have passed the magical 30-year mark gets a much more relaxed inspection from some inspectors, it seems. In addition the Montreal isn’t a very noisy car, something old imports usually are ribbed over.

So, the inspector took a picture of the chassis number, counted the number of seats, cross checked his database with a list of already registered Montreals, stamped a lot of paper and handed me the plates. It’s registered for two people now, for unknown reasons. In other words, carrying passengers in the ridiculous back seats is formally not allowed. Fair enough, since they are only fit for luggage anyway.

Another thing worth noting is that the problems with falling fuel pressure have been fixed. Well, not fixed, really, but I now know why it happens: the alternator can’t keep up with the engine revs or the electrical load, probably because the brushes are worn. I fixed the symptoms to a certain degree by replacing the old and dubious mechanical voltage regulator, but the symptoms remain. For the record, the Montreal uses the same Bosch voltage regulator as a 1975 Volvo 240. These are readily available and costs about NOK 500 (€60).

Oil spill ...And finally, I got around to changing the engine oil and filter. For various stupid reasons, the car was put away in winter storage without getting its oil changed, and I had no idea whatsoever when it was last changed. There is a sticker in the engine compartment that says it was changed with Castrol TX 10W/40 around 91.000 kms, and if this is true, the oil was pretty new-ish kilometer-wise, but still six years old.

25 May, I changed the oil to Agip Super 20W/50. As you can see from the picture, I’ve never changed the oil on a dry-sump car before ;) I was quite surprised to find out just how fast the oil pours out of the reservoir in the engine bay. The filter I fitted was a Purolator Premium Plus L20081.

dsc00724.jpgFriday 15 June, we mounted the Montreal and took off to KARN’s national convention in Trondheim. It’s a 1200 km round trip, so I was curious to see whether the car could take the long trip without problems. To make a long story short, it passed with flying colours. The clutch is prone to slipping at very high rpm and it consumes a little oil, but other than that nothing happened. It’s a real Gran Turismo which feels very good cruising at 100 km/h. Monique even read me a book on the trip, a testament to the sound-proofing and GT-ishness of the old car.

Water …In late july, after it had rained for two weeks straight, I discovered that both the passenger foot well and the driver’s seat were soaking wet! The culprit appeared to be the old and slightly disintegrating wind screen seal, so that’s another issue to tackle during the winter. It took a couple of days to get everything dry. The professional wind screen shops are apparently reluctant to take on a job like this due to the old school mounting of these wind screens, but the seal absolutely must be replaced. They’re available from Classic Alfa in London.

Listing extravaganzaThen, 20 July, I took the Montreal to the KARN track day at Rudskogen. As I’ve written before on several occasions, it’s a touring car and not a track day monster. Allright, I’m going to say this one more time: a Montreal is useless on the race track. Trust me. It is ;) The only redeeming value this GT has racing wise, is that on an Alfa Romeo track day, very few cars can keep up with the straight line acceleration. But alas, race tracks are prone to have curves, so the overall experience is that of finding yourself in a particularly old, creaking and listing boat. The 25% limited slip differential doesn’t help either.

New spark plug leads

Thursday, March 29th, 2007

I bought a set of new distributor leads (or spark plug cables) for the Montreal on eBay. The seller was Classic Cars Hartmann in Austria, and the cables set me back €89 including shipping. It’s 10 cables in total, eight for the cylinders and two for the ignition coils.

The old ones are from when the car was new, and is likely in a dubious condition. The cable for cylinder #3 have also been changed at one point, to a no-name, black one, which on top of everything is a few centimeters too short.

I also bought a new thermostat on eBay, from Ricambi-Automobilia.

Old cablesSpark plug cables

Guess I’ll go to the mail box and wait now ;)