Tips on changing big end bearings - Alfa Romeo Forum
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(Post Link) post #1 of 35 Old 21-11-09 Thread Starter
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Hmmm Tips on changing big end bearings

I have read several threads on here and in the GTV forum about changing big end bearings/ shells after a cambelt failure, and some people that even do a routine change of them every so often, How easier job is it and can anyone give a step by step guide and helpfull tips on doing this job from dropping the sump onwards. Also when you order the shells do you just get a like for like set if you are not taking the crank out for a regrind!
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If the crank has no damage, and it shouldn't have, then just change the shells like for like. Use the part number on the shell. It's certainly do-able, but its not as easy a job as it should be. You need a Ribe set and the 2 nearest the gear box are well hidden and you need a thin extension. If the budget stretches, get these

Alfa Romeo TotallyAlfa Twinspark sump removal ribe tool

as it will reduce the hassle factor. There is also a tricky bolt to access at the rear of the sump. Once the bolts are out, take time to free the sealant using a stanley knife and slowly work it free. The oil pick up is a pain and gets in the way, slacken the bolts to give you more working room.

Changing the shells is easy, keep the bearing caps and bolts in order and make sure they all go back in the same place. They were £43 a full set from an Alfa Dealer, so not expensive. Refiiting the sump is a right PITA. Keep the oil pick up slack until the sump is in place, try not to disturb the fresh sealant you have applied that, by the way, will be no good in 15 mins so don't hang about! I got there in the end but it took 2 goes (after cleaning off the sealant again) but I had told myself that if it leaked, it was going to the indie!!

This is a pretty good guide

http://www.alfa145.co.uk/tech_pages/sump.html

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Last edited by Mitch916; 22-11-09 at 17:39.
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Mitch its alot easier when the engine is in the garage upsidedown on an engine stand...
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(Post Link) post #4 of 35 Old 22-11-09 Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info, i will order those ribe tools from totally Alfa this evening, i wish i had the time to put the engine out on the Bench ut unfortunately i will be doing it in situ.

Last edited by TOPKIT; 22-11-09 at 20:44.
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Thanks for the info, i will order those ribe tools from totally Alfa this evening, i wish i had the time to put the engine out on the Bench ut unfortunately i will be doing it in situ.
I wish i had that issue mine had to come out for the crank to be ground...
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(Post Link) post #6 of 35 Old 23-11-09 Thread Starter
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Blimey your crank was ovalled then! have you stripped an engine before then. I had some Cylinder head studs corrode and break on my 911 and when the engine was out and stipped on the bench i could not believe all of the parts when they were laid out. I am just going for the preventitive maintenance. Just out of interest Mitch said use the part number on the shell but i was wondering if Alfa could supply the correct shells from the chassis/ reg number, are the shells the same along the crank or can they be different sizes, sorry for appearing thick but I am new to doing bottom ends on twin-sparks!
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The shells can be different sizes mate. IIRC there are 3 different factory sizes. The part number will be visable though as it is stamped on the back of the shell so don't worry, either look it up on eper or get the dealer to do it for you to ensure you get the right size.
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Mitch they still come in sets and only a set is fitted to each crank, not a different size on each journal????

The number is stamped on the back of the shells, my crank was reground and the guys who done that provided the correct size replacement shells so i didnt have that worry...

I havnt stripped an engine before but its no really been much differnt to the kinda stuff i do in work , i have enjoyed doing the work apart from the cost of it......
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Mitch they still come in sets and only a set is fitted to each crank, not a different size on each journal????

..
No thats right mate, all four will be the same size but they will be 1 of 3 possible sizes.
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are the shells the same along the crank or can they be different sizes, sorry for appearing thick but I am new to doing bottom ends on twin-sparks!
This was what got me mitch i just wanted to make sure that TOPKIT was 100% sure on what we were talking about...
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If your doing the job with the engine in the car, a shower cap is useful!

Last edited by the alligator; 28-11-09 at 08:26.
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If your doing the job with the engine the car, a shower cap is useful!
And Big Goggles
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(Post Link) post #13 of 35 Old 13-12-09 Thread Starter
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Well i called an Alfa dealer and enquired about big end bearings, gave them the vehicle reg and chassis number and they have sent me a set of 5 !! 4 of them have the part number 0071728316 and the fith set have the code 0071718258 the labels on all of them have half bearings printed on the labels too also on the edges of each bearing there are 3 red marks? A friend of mine who is a mechanic was going to help but it has now confused the heck out of him, any ideas anyone Mitch, Biffa, anyone !!
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Red marks mean they are standard size bearings but they have sent you the mains, the ones the crank shaft turns on. You want the big ends, the shells that the con-rod of the piston rides on.

Did you not find the part number on your old shells?
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(Post Link) post #15 of 35 Old 13-12-09 Thread Starter
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Hi Mitch, no i have not taken the sump off yet, the chap seemed to think i could order them via chassis number. I will give them a call again tommorrow and check again. luckily i am not using this particular GTV at the moment, i was going to do the job after christmas.

Does anyone one to buy a set of standard main bearings!!

Last edited by TOPKIT; 13-12-09 at 22:06.
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Does anyone one to buy a set of standard main bearings!!

Return them, they should take them back if they have ordered the wrong ones...
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(Post Link) post #17 of 35 Old 20-12-09 Thread Starter
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I still havent got around to gettting the big end bearings, mainly as i don't want to be under a car in this weather!! i have just got the special sump sockets from Totally Alfa, so at least it should be easier to get to the difficult bolts on the sump now.
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I don't blame you, there is no way I would drop the sump while it's as cold as this!
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I was putting my engine back in last week when the weather changed i couldnt feel my fingers...
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Sump wont budge

Out in the frost (in garage) aiming to inspect sad noises from big end.
I'm loathed to use anymore force or screwdriver edge wedges to get my sump off - I've got all the socket screws and the engine mount and the awkward rear bolt and a couple of other obvious - but it still fighting me (the prise tabs sheared straight off - maybe a sign of cold/brittle metal) but i don't want the same to happen to a sealing edge

ANY TIPS ? TECHNIQUES

I even dropped the sump extension panel - nowt in there!!

BTW I've rebuilt more than a few engines before but this is my first Alfa

anybody who thinks the sky is the limit is just short on imagination
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Sounds like you got all the fixings out.Did you get the 2 hard to reach small ones at the gearbox end? I ran a stanley blade as far round as I could in the join to cut as much as I could and then it came much easier.
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im in the same situation with bottom end falilure but not in a garage outside on the drive rolling around in the snow brrr its freezing
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More coffee - more effort

THANKS Mitch - I'll double check
Back into the frost - It may be in a garage but the snow isn't thawing off my boots!!

Stanley blade and cold fingers - hmmm
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(Post Link) post #24 of 35 Old 09-01-10 Thread Starter
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Good luck to both of you i am not doing mine until the weather warms up. Have you checked out the pictures and thread in GTV and 916 i think it's the one titled twin spark gone rattley, the chap has added a couple of pictures of the bottom end of his engine with a knackered shell another great thread!
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Slowly slowly catchy ----- monkey!!??

Mitch 166 -
'found the elusive fastenings at the gearbox end - interesting little specimens, without the right tool - but got them!

Topkit -
thanks to you also - for the direction to other threads - 'found 2x big ends with rotational play (not just sliding float) I've not cracked them open yet - want to turn the engine 10 degs to judge if mains have seized - I just get the impression that the engine is tight - Plugs out and gently prise the starter ring round I guess - - {Hey this isn't bad for a 59 year old office worker?}

AOC is proving it's value - over Google!!! - Thanks again guys
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