Just a quick update since my cam belt replacement by 'The Alfa Workshop' on Wednesday I now have a oil leak from the rocker cover gasket making it's way down the side of the block to the gearbox. As I live 80 miles from Royston Jamie has kindly offered to send me a new rubber gasket, are these easy to install? Is there an order to tightening the bolts on the Cam cover or any torque settings I need to use? Or anything else I need to consider when replacing the gasket?
Yes - tools - you'll need the unusual 'Ribe' bits, which are different to the slightly-less-unusual 'Spline' bits or the now-fairly-common Torx bits. Ribe is also known as Polydrive; you can see it here Polydrive - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The first Ribe bolts you get to are on the silver plastic top cover. You can probably get those out using an Allen key (I did), but of course the bolts deeper within (that hold the actual cam cover) are more important, and therefore, tighter. Also, you have to take all the coils off (and their bracket) - and again, those Ribe bolts are quite tight.
If you already have Torx bits of the type that fit onto a ratchet handle, try the T40 - it may do the job. If you don't already have Torx or hex bits, I suggest investing in something like Draper Expert 67065 7 piece set of ribe socket bits on socket rail: Amazon.co.uk: DIY & Tools
as it always pays to have the right tool for the job in the end. A chewed-head fastener is a huge waste of time on any job
If you already have Ribe tools and have been down this road in the past, then sorry for wasting your time
Over here in NZ I found it a mission to get the Ribe bits - experienced old people in tool shops looked at me as though I was asking for a flux capacitor. First I had to prove that Ribe existed, then we had to ask the largest four trade-only wholesalers (Sidchrome, Teng Tools, Sulco, and Snap-On), and eventually at Sulco we found one set of eight very long Ribe bits for a modest $110 (about 60 pounds). A quick search shows that Ribe bits are far more readily available in the UK. I think I might order the full 22-piece set for 25 pounds 1 pence!
As for torque settings - sorry, I don't have those to hand - personally I operate under the principle of how tight it feels when I undo them - that's how tight I do them up
As for the subject of the poxy cable ties chewing into the bushes - well, all I can say is that I didn't observe that problem when I removed them several months later to replace the bushes. Smaky is right of course that the best solution is to replace the antiroll bar, and I'm not disputing that, but it is a job that would take the average person at home most of a weekend because the subframe must be lowered - suspension unbolted, tunnel under the car unbolted, steering rack unbolted (very tight)...) It's not that bad when you actually get into it, but it's definitely a few hours at least. Smaky will next claim that it's an hour-and-a-half job from start to finish, but he's special
If all you want is to silence the left-right movement of the bar (and since most times the bushes are still in good condition to allow the bar to twist without up-down play), then you know what I'm suggesting.