So, this is a thread I was hoping to avoid for another 12 months or so, but my hand has been forced by some overenthusiastic tin-worm. I hope that this thread will help keep me on course during the refurb and will give me some kind of sense of achievement once my to-do list is complete. I find myself taking on rust in two Alfas at the time point, not ideal but I’ve been ignoring the 33 since I purchased the Sud and it has finally thrown its toys out of the pram.
This is a car I've owned for about 11 years now. In that time, it spent 5 years parked at the side of my Mothers house, completely ignored and untouched while I went to college and bummed around in a 1l Starlet. Once I finished up and started earning money, it went back onto the road with no more that new tires and fresh petrol.
Small mechanical niggles forced me to take it back off the road for another year during which time the engine received some attention. (Those who know the car will have a fair idea what that involved.) After some spannering and a significant mechanical donation from Toad, it was back and did a pretty good job of scaring passengers, and surprising some much larger cars, for the next 5 years while driving all over the country with the Guys over on the irish section of Alfaowner.
Two crowning moments were a spectacular hissy fit during what was supposed to be a sedate parade lap during the Alfa Centenary at Classic Car live:
And its performance as my wedding car in 2010:
Now, I’m the first to admit that I’ve a fairly lax approach toward maintenance. I tend to repair rather than maintain and if I’m honest, I’ve know that the underside of the car was under attack for a while now. I’ve always said that as soon as it failed the NCT, I’d attend to the problems. But it kept passing, much to my amusement and the complete disbelief of most of the testers in Drogheda. But it kept getting through, and so I kept driving it. Its last test was in April and it went through needing only 2 front tyres (absolutely no surprise there).
So having my hands full with the Sud (http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/alfa-...d-project.html
), I kept on ignoring it until a couple of weeks ago, while trying to trace a leak in the top half of the fuel tank, I poked at a dubious looking section of under seal with a screwdriver:
Not good, not good at all. Amazingly, it was put on axel stands using this jacking point. It wasn’t until I poked it that I realised it was as bad as it is. The other side isnt much better.
So, my long suffering 33 has finally succumbed to the rust that seems to have been eating away at it for quite a while. The decision came a lot faster than I expected. Welder ordered and delivered, steel sourced and the chopping starts this weekend.
I plan on doing as much as possible to the underside while it’s off the road. On the surface, it’s still as good as it’s going to get bar a full re-spray which I can’t justify or afford at the moment. My initial list is:
1. Strip all the under seal.
2. Cut out and replace all the rot (inner cills, boot floor and bottom of the drivers door)
3. Replace the heater matrix that gave up the ghost last year
4. Blast and powder coat the suspension arms and put in power-flex bushes at the rear (front is already done)
5. Put it back together then ignore for another 10 years
I hope to keep this thread updated primarily as motivation for myself and so that I can look back and feel like it’s all been worth it. I’m not ashamed to say that this car is very special to me and I hope that I can do it justice. I don’t expect the refurb to happen quickly but I’m aiming to be finished by the time the NCT roles around again.