Sunday, June 24, 2012

The '82 GTV rumbles on...

30 years later, my '82 model Alfa Romeo GTV remains reliable and relatively cheap to run. OK, it uses more gas than a 'modern' car - twin double-choke carbies will do that for you - but it remains on the road and in one piece. Rust is minimal, just on the surface here and there, particularly the boot lid. Paintwork is original, if faded and thin in places!

Mechanically all is well. In the 22-odd years it has been in my company (or close by, as I sold it once and bought it back a few years later) it has received the following attention, in roughly this order:

  • Regular servicing - well all cars need that!
  • New tyres (not that it really needed 'em)
  • Repaired rust from battery overspill in boot (yes, battery in boot - famously non-working aircon fiited under bonnet, takes up space)
  • Electronic ignition (from a newer GTV)
  • Lots of new seals, here there and everywhere, to fix oil leaks
  • New plugs (Alfas have an appetite for Golden Lodge 2HL plugs)
  • At least 3 replacement doughnuts, the type that keep the long, long and fast-spinning driveshaft happy
  • New brake master cylinder (failed on the road, I had to do a "gear-controlled" deceleration)
  • New clutch master cylinder (failed after a New Year's Eve party - the perfect time to practice clutchless gearchanges!)
  • New clutch plates (new ones creaked for a while, that's normal and went away)
  • New wheel bearings (front)
  • New brake pads all 'round (hardly earth-shaking, I know)
  • Reconditioned gearbox (a few worn out bits, it wouldn't hold onto gears under power)
  • Reconditioned petrol tank (blocked breather pipe caused the problem)
  • 'New' block to replace a cracked block (whilst I didn't own it, luckily)
  • Aircon fixed, in a manner of speaking
  • New shocks (Bilstein), not that the new ones had failed, of course
  • Some pre-owned interior bits and pieces from a GTV6
  • Some front suspension bits from a 105
  • More new tyres
  • New distributor brush and cap (I had bought it back by now so of course it stopped running)
  • More new plugs (probably should just include that with 'regular servicing') to give it that 'running on four cyclinders' feeling.
Not too bad for 30 years, anyway. Could do with a respray.