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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The chrome pipes on my Gtv's engine are in awful condition, not shown in the photo below :)

Today I managed to find the pipes below where I was working for the day - FIAT/Alfa dismantlers - actually, I found seven, but the seventh was a smaller diameter off a 2.5V6.

As you can see, these pipes weren't in good condition and I was expecting to remove mine and fit these while mine were sent away for rechroming.

However, while the TV was going on a Friday night, and someone else was lying on the couch watching inane programmes, I got out the soap-impregnated steel wool and set to work in the kitchen...
 

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Discussion Starter #2
...the steel wool worked quickly and easily. There was still some rust around the flanges, but I don't think I've seen a set of these pipes where the chrome was blemish-free around the flanges anyway.

The Autosol Edel-Chromglanz and a microfibre cloth worked so well that I've decided to just put these on my engine and leave it at that ;)

When you see the next post, you might agree? Heheh
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
The pipes on my engine are so shocking, I had a dealer put the VIN into ePer so that I could check the engine number was correct. I actually thought the engine had come from a scrapyard, as the condition didn't seem commensurate with the rest of the car. Turns out the rest of the engine has little corrosion, I'm looking forward to cleaning it :eek:

-Alex
 

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The pipes on my engine are so shocking, I had a dealer put the VIN into ePer so that I could check the engine number was correct. I actually thought the engine had come from a scrapyard :eek:

-Alex
Looks good.

So what was the actual process.
Rub with wool
Polish with autosol ??

Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Looks good.

So what was the actual process.
Rub with wool
Polish with autosol ??
Thanks, yes, the stainless steel wool (Steelo) has green soap impregnated in it, so warm water in the kitchen sink helps to get the pipes clean and see the progress. Most of the rust spots are actually tiny and just look a lot worse than they are. Only the rust spots around the flanges remain visible. The steel wool does all the work of minimising the rust spots and does not scratch the chrome (which is harder than the steel wool). The Autosol then brings up a great shine.

As you'll see in the photo below, the pipes on my engine were a hopeless case because large pieces of the chrome had simply flaked off, exposing rusty steel. I guess it wasn't a good day in the factory that day.

-Alex
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
And just under an hour later, the pipes are changed.

This is a lot easier with the tools shown here - Clic-clamp pliers (about £8, from Korea via eBay UK), a 5mm ball-ended Allen key with the long end ground/snapped off and epoxied into a 5mm socket, a 1/4" extension and ratchet handle no larger than this, as you don't want to over torque the bolts (threads in the thin alloy intake manifold are delicate), and a 13mm ring spanner for the bolt holding a brace on the plenum chamber.

With all the large clips unclipped first, it helps to shift the air intake chamber slightly backwards, after removing the two 5mm hex cap screws (in line with the rear bank spark plugs, one each end) and the 13mm hex bolt on the brace near the oil separator can and engine torque reaction mount.

This is because it turns out to be very difficult to extract the pipes for the front bank without gaining a little more space first.

All my green gaskets stayed in place when the pipes popped off. It would be a good idea to replace them all (gaskets are available individually).

The ball-ended Allen key in a socket (a tool I made when I had 164s) is really essential at the belt end of the engine, where there are various hard fuel lines to work around. This long and narrow tool makes it easy. On refitting, it takes a little care not to cross thread the bolts that have difficult access.

Also, a magnetic pickup tool proves to be essential at some stage. You don't want to risk anything left behind in the 'vee' - it might migrate to the cambelt area and cause havoc. Ensure that all 12 capscrews finish up with their washers still included... plus the two bolts and washers on the rear bank spark plug cover.

The Clic clamps are a delight with the proper tool and need to be completely released (the pre-fastening tab released from its slot) so as to extract the chrome pipe from the rubber pipe.

My rubber pipes on this car from Japan were all nicely supple, but that won't be the case on a car from Singapore or other smog/ozone-rich environments. Been there, done that with a 164 and two 166s! Do you get used imports from Singapore in the UK?

-Alex
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
stunning and big improvement on the engine bling
Thanks - easy job to do, but I thought I'd write it up so others can tackle it with the right tools. It's a lot easier than struggling with screwdrivers etc. to release the clamps, trying to use an L-shaped Allen key in the limited space available, not finding the brace and therefore not shifting the plenum/air intake chamber, etc. been there, done that too :D

You get a chance to inspect the intake valves (photo below, mine were fine), looking for thick carbon buildup that would indicate leaky guides/valve stem seals (obviously just a piece of information to tuck away for future consideration, as fixing it would be a big rebuild).

I was lucky with the gaskets remaining intact (although, they are a bit oily, I decided that was OK), but it would be best to have new gaskets, as air leaks here can cause a high and unstable idle speed.

It's also a good time to check and change rear bank spark plugs if there is any doubt about their condition. See excellent guide by Brian (biodieselGT) at http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/alfa...38-gtv-v6-spark-plug-change-how-to-guide.html for details. On my GTA, they had been changed but were loose, making a whistling noise!

-Alex
 

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Thanks - easy job to do, but I thought I'd write it up so others can tackle it with the right tools. It's a lot easier than struggling with screwdrivers etc. to release the clamps, trying to use an L-shaped Allen key in the limited space available, not finding the brace and therefore not shifting the plenum/air intake chamber, etc. been there, done that too :D

You get a chance to inspect the intake valves (photo below, mine were fine), looking for thick carbon buildup that would indicate leaky guides/valve stem seals (obviously just a piece of information to tuck away for future consideration, as fixing it would be a big rebuild).

I was lucky with the gaskets remaining intact (although, they are a bit oily, I decided that was OK), but it would be best to have new gaskets, as air leaks here can cause a high and unstable idle speed.

It's also a good time to check and change rear bank spark plugs if there is any doubt about their condition. See excellent guide by Brian (biodieselGT) at http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/alfa...38-gtv-v6-spark-plug-change-how-to-guide.html for details. On my GTA, they had been changed but were loose, making a whistling noise!

-Alex
Really helpful posts as I'm actually taking my pipes off this weekend to get access to the fuel lines and to be able to properly polish the pipes. My pipes are quite rusty, one of which has a large 3"x2" section of rust. Would you method here help that do you think?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Really helpful posts as I'm actually taking my pipes off this weekend to get access to the fuel lines and to be able to properly polish the pipes. My pipes are quite rusty, one of which has a large 3"x2" section of rust. Would you method here help that do you think?
If the area of rust is many small dots, it might clean up ok. Otherwise, sounds like mine, where the chrome flaked off. Might be worth looking for a spare pipe in typical condition so that you can clean that up?

-Alex
 
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If the area of rust is many small dots, it might clean up ok. Otherwise, sounds like mine, where the chrome flaked off. Might be worth looking for a spare pipe in typical condition so that you can clean that up?

-Alex
Thanks for the help. Those which had only small spots cleaned up brilliantly, but I didn't risk going at the one which is heavily damaged. The pads worked a treat, thanks for the advice :thumbup:
 

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It's important to use stainless steel wool ! If yo use black steel wool you will rub in small particles of non-stainless steel in the crome and it will corode and give mis colouring or even pitting corrosion.

Never use black steel wool or a black steel wire brush on chrome, aluminium or stainless steel (including your kitchen sink! :) )
 
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