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Absolutely! :) I've seen many Spiders, before getting mine (well, wife's actually, I'm just a handyman and ocasional driver :) ) and all of them had silver rollover hoops damaged, or scratched, or glued...
You can quite easily remove the gas springs, get one of the lower ones, and try to squeeze it in your hands. 200N is quite a lot, and squeezing a new one is very, very hard. Or rather, imposible with bare hands.
To move swiftly heavy rear window across the hoops is a carefully orchestrated effort of all four gas springs, two coil springs that keep upper corners and elastic strap that runs along the window. All those elements loose strength over time, and with minimal distance to the hoop it makes the window to sag and fall in the groove on the hoop.

And the second issue, popping corner - when you close the hood, the hydraulic cylinder on the fifth arc exerts sufficient force to close, but once it's over, hydraulic pressure drops, and if the gas spring doesn't hold, rubber buffer on the over-centre pops the strut back, sometimes alone, sometimes due to vibrations during ride. In some cases, depending on where the Hall sensor is on the hydraulic cylinder, it may cause "Hood not closed" message.

Moving the Hall sensors around is what most Alfa dealers charge as "roof adjustment". Actually, the roof has very few adjustable parts - mostly locks, and main anchor points, which are rarely out of adjustment.
It's a reliable German construction, by Webasto, used also in 3-series beemer and in slightly different version on other cars.

//Mateo
Where are these hall sensors?

I am getting an error message where my roof doesn't do anything. I took it a dealership and they confirmed it was microswitch failure but they couldn't confirm anything until they do further investigation, smells fishy to me lol.

If you have any information where all the microswitches are in the roof and any schematics it'll be appreciated. :wink_org:
 

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Well it´s too cold today for a walk to the garage, to make a photo, but below is the schematics from eLearn, could be helpful. Sensor that might give the message right after closing is probably 23.

Sensors are easy to spot - black plastic thingy with cables, mounted on top of the hydraulic cylinders. They're flat, with QRcode on them, fixed to the cylinder through plastic holder that can be shifted up and down.

Hall sensors are very reliable, this is the same type of sensor that is used in ABS, so malfunction is rather due to bad positioning or cabling. One other thing to keep in mind - function of the sensors is redundant, i.e.. one bad signal does not necesarily mean interruption of the process, especially on hood closure.

The least reliable sensors in our hood must be the one in the flap motor - it´s a potentiometer, so susceptible to wear and moisture. This is my next weekend project - disassembly of the flap motors :)

//Mateo
 

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BTW. I mixed up the gas springs in my original description. Lower one, 200N keeps the fifth arc/bow down, upper one 100N tenses the roof between 3rd and 4th arc. Sorry for that.
Drawings below show location of the springs.
Stabilus ref. numbers are actual ones, not what you will find on original springs. They changed numbering some time ago.

Oh, and I've found a photo of the sensor :)

http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/alfa-159-brera-andamp-946-spider/687689-roof-problems-with-946-spyder-help-needed.html

//Mateo



PD. I've corrected the original post, to reflect proper spring functions.
 

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Well it´s too cold today for a walk to the garage, to make a photo, but below is the schematics from eLearn, could be helpful. Sensor that might give the message right after closing is probably 23.

Sensors are easy to spot - black plastic thingy with cables, mounted on top of the hydraulic cylinders. They're flat, with QRcode on them, fixed to the cylinder through plastic holder that can be shifted up and down.

Hall sensors are very reliable, this is the same type of sensor that is used in ABS, so malfunction is rather due to bad positioning or cabling. One other thing to keep in mind - function of the sensors is redundant, i.e.. one bad signal does not necesarily mean interruption of the process, especially on hood closure.

The least reliable sensors in our hood must be the one in the flap motor - it´s a potentiometer, so susceptible to wear and moisture. This is my next weekend project - disassembly of the flap motors :)

//Mateo
Do you know the part numbers for those sensors for the lid? (Ideally all of them).

Ideally Alfa and supplier because I am sure the latter will be much cheaper. Hopefully they are just cheap microswitches which you buy from RS or something.

PM if it is easier.
 

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Do you know the part numbers for those sensors for the lid? (Ideally all of them).

Ideally Alfa and supplier because I am sure the latter will be much cheaper. Hopefully they are just cheap microswitches which you buy from RS or something.

PM if it is easier.
Hi Ryan,

Abandon all hope :) - those sensors apparently are are sold only as a harness, with cabling, part number according to eper is 71748886 for the one on the hood cover. It's far from cheap, eper shows around 200Eu. Dont't know who the supplier is, (Lear?), but I've never saw harnesses sold outside of the official dealer's network.

But - I doubt very much that Hall sensors are faulty, takes probably physical damage to kill them. These are not mechanical microswitches. You can check them, it's basically watching the voltage when you move a small magnet close by.
Test procedure, if anyone needs it, attached below.

Don't know what problems you're experiencing, and why you think it's the sensors... If your mechanic talks about "microswitches" then probably it's time to look elsewhere for advice. BMW used to have proper trainings for their staff on the cabrio hoods, and it's basically the same construction.

//Mateo
 

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Hi Ryan,

Abandon all hope :) - those sensors apparently are are sold only as a harness, with cabling, part number according to eper is 71748886 for the one on the hood cover. It's far from cheap, eper shows around 200Eu. Dont't know who the supplier is, (Lear?), but I've never saw harnesses sold outside of the official dealer's network.

But - I doubt very much that Hall sensors are faulty, takes probably physical damage to kill them. These are not mechanical microswitches. You can check them, it's basically watching the voltage when you move a small magnet close by.
Test procedure, if anyone needs it, attached below.

Don't know what problems you're experiencing, and why you think it's the sensors... If your mechanic talks about "microswitches" then probably it's time to look elsewhere for advice. BMW used to have proper trainings for their staff on the cabrio hoods, and it's basically the same construction.

//Mateo
One mechanic guessed it would be a mircoswitch or sensor because her didn't have the correct diagnostics equipment and the second was a Alfa dealership. They might of said sensor not switch but a device to give feedback to the car anyway. The Dealership said it was a sensor/microswitch but said they couldn't specific which one and they would have to do a physical investigation.

No way to remove the senors and install new ones onto the harness?

I actually work for Lear EDS as a CAD design engineer so maybe I can get a harness?!?!?
 

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Sensors can be replaced, harnes is just a bunch of cables. Cut it and solder new one in.
But again - I seriously doubt that Hall sensor is at fault. With the test procedure I've included before you'll be sure.
If Examiner shows no signal from sensor, it's more probable that sensor got knocked and is badly positioned, they can be shifted up and down the cylinder. What symptoms do you have? Roof is not opening at all?
 

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Sensors can be replaced, harnes is just a bunch of cables. Cut it and solder new one in.
But again - I seriously doubt that Hall sensor is at fault. With the test procedure I've included before you'll be sure.
If Examiner shows no signal from sensor, it's more probable that sensor got knocked and is badly positioned, they can be shifted up and down the cylinder. What symptoms do you have? Roof is not opening at all?
All that happens when I try to put the roof down is the windows open slightly and then nothing other than a error message "Temporary roof failure".

I was thinking of just removing the sensors and soldering new ones in. I expect the sensors are in a holder within the harness assembly. Though I haven't checked this.
 

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All that happens when I try to put the roof down is the windows open slightly and then nothing other than a error message "Temporary roof failure".
In my experience the roof has an amazing ability to fix itself - with some help. Have you tried doing a manual opening and closing cycle - and then trying an automated one again?
Also check the fluid level in the roof's hydraulic reservoir and that the manual release cable behind the seat in the storage compartment is pushed fully back (mentioned on here many times before).

Manual procedure here - http://www.alfaworkshop.co.uk/alfa_brera_spider_hood_release.shtml

Talking about the roof - maybe helpful for others:
I have for some time now had an issue with the rear window not lifting on the closing cycle to allow the roof deck to close (yet it lifts up every time on the opening cycle). I have now learnt to just go backwards and forwards on the switch a few times at that point where it needs to perform that part of the cycle - and now it closes every time - no more roof anxiety.. woohoo!
 

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All that happens when I try to put the roof down is the windows open slightly and then nothing other than a error message "Temporary roof failure".

(...)
This would rather indicate problem in door/windows ECU not sending signal to roof ECU, confirming window drop, than any of the sensors.
Check first the pump, oil levels etc, as Veloce suggested. Manual movement of the roof can also clear some problems.

//Mateo
 

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In my experience the roof has an amazing ability to fix itself - with some help. Have you tried doing a manual opening and closing cycle - and then trying an automated one again?
Also check the fluid level in the roof's hydraulic reservoir and that the manual release cable behind the seat in the storage compartment is pushed fully back (mentioned on here many times before).

Manual procedure here - How to get the hood on a Brera Spider back up if it fails

Talking about the roof - maybe helpful for others:
I have for some time now had an issue with the rear window not lifting on the closing cycle to allow the roof deck to close (yet it lifts up every time on the opening cycle). I have now learnt to just go backwards and forwards on the switch a few times at that point where it needs to perform that part of the cycle - and now it closes every time - no more roof anxiety.. woohoo!
I tried this but with no luck. It works for one circle, (one close then one open) and then it fails.
 

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I tried this but with no luck. It works for one circle, (one close then one open) and then it fails.
So, starting with closed roof, you can open, then close, and then it cannot open again?

Try this next time - before pressing the button, release manualy the over-the-centre struts on both sides.
Then try to open.

(to clarify - by open roof I mean sky over your head, roof stowed in the cover.. :) )

//Mateo
 

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I tried this but with no luck. It works for one circle, (one close then one open) and then it fails.
So, starting with closed roof, you can open, then close, and then it cannot open again?

Try this next time - before pressing the button, release manualy the over-the-centre struts on both sides.
Then try to open.

(to clarify - by open roof I mean sky over
your head, roof stowed in the cover..
)

//Mateo
I put the roof down manually as the open function would not work at the time.

It would close then open (see sky) open but wouldn't close again.

I'll try later this week if I have time your suggestion.
 

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How are the struts secured?

What tools do you need?

I may of spoke too soon lol
You can see it in the drawing above - struts have plastic heads, secured by metal spring. You'll need a a flat screwdriver, not much more (patience... :) )

Struts have exactly the same fixing as the struts in the boot or the hood/bonnet. You can look closely there for hints.

//Mateo
 

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Hi,

I was gonna open a new thread, but found this one describing exactly what I did today, so let me expand a little and give my thumbs up.

My 2007 Spider had two typical roof issues - rear window getting stuck on plastic embellishment of head hoops and arc corner sometimes slightly popping up after closure.
Both issues are solved, changing 2+2 gas struts inside the hood. Mine were totally shot, just as I suspect most of them are after couple of years (keep reading why).

First pair, upper one, rated at 100N, which seems to be responsible for tensioning the roof between 3rd and 4th arc. This keeps (heavy) rear window slightly up when going over the hoops. There´re also elastic straps, that go along each side of the window (photo below), which after couple of years loose elasticity - I pulled them slightly and made a knot, to tense them again.
Second pair of the struts, rated at 200N, keeps lower, fifth arc tensed and roof sealed to the cover. If the corner pops, or you need a lot of force to lock over-the centre struts, this most probably is the gas spring being dead weight.

My 100N springs were completely shot, no force whatsoever. The 200N, one had around 35N (causing shearing of the plastic cover on the hoop on that side), the other had around 120N.

For the replacement gas springs, you´re looking for Stabilus 2609NH and 2607NR. Avoid Alfa Service prices, they're double retail. Myself, I've fitted FA Krosno 23286 250N as lower springs, and Hahn Gasfedern 106729.2 + 2xPX22, charged to 150N (these are industrial quality springs, with valve to regulate or charge the spring, and steel ball mounts). FA Krosno you can get around here for 8-10 quid, Hahn are closer to 18-20 quid/piece. PM me, if you want some contacts here in Poland to get them, many places ship internationally. You basically want 155mm, 40mm displacement, 6/15 gas springs with fi10 ball mounting.

10 full cycles of opening/closing confirm that no issues whatsoever remain. :thumbu p:

Removal/refitting is really easy, with just two rivets to drill (I've replaced them with small screws afterwards), and four screws to undo. PM me if you need a detailed procedure.

By the way, popping of the corner is also often caused by the rubber limiter on the over-the-center struts. Undo small allen screw that blocks it, and turn the rubber in.

Last but not least - why those gas springs break? When ordering my springs I spoke to the engineer that designs them, and apparently the biggest factor in gas springs loosing pressure is amount of vibrations, especially when extended.
Unlike gas springs in the boot, or any other places in the car, the ones in the roof are constantly vibrating with the roof up and the car at speed. This means that spring quality is paramount, but anyway they´ll die after 3-4 years anyway and should be replaced. (The ones in the boot can last even 20 years. My other Alfa proves that :) )

So, it was a good day in the garage, now I need a slightly warmer days to take the Spider for a spin...
Hello Matteo, could I have detailed procedure to remove/refit 200N gas spring? Thanks
 

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I got them from Sgs-engineering.com a UK company. Very quick postage and helpful too. They can also re-gas struts as long as they are in good condition.
The numbers that I quoted-taken off my original struts were: 7456VP 0200N & 5579XQ 0100N. From these numbers they found their equivalent which come with a 2 year warranty.
Are the parts identical as the parts replaced?

Where where any tools you needed?

Was there any tricky parts to the reassembly?
 

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Hello Matteo, could I have detailed procedure to remove/refit 200N gas spring? Thanks
Hello amboren,
I'm away from my main computer where I keep the eLearn, so all I can do is to try to answer the questions or doubts you may have. You don't need any specific tools, get good quality replacement struts, take care when drilling the rivets, they are aluminium, but somehow I had an issue to remove them - maybe the drill was too big.
You need to get to screws that attach internal roof textile to the roof stucture. Once this is removed you'll see the struts. Struts have exactly the same security mechanism as the struts that lift the boot/bonnet - you can practice with them.
When installing the struts, remember to do that with arc lowered = struts extended.

That's from top of my head, let me know if there's anything I can help you with,
 

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I got them from Sgs-engineering.com a UK company. Very quick postage and helpful too. They can also re-gas struts as long as they are in good condition.
The numbers that I quoted-taken off my original struts were: 7456VP 0200N & 5579XQ 0100N. From these numbers they found their equivalent which come with a 2 year warranty.
Hello amboren,
I'm away from my main computer where I keep the eLearn, so all I can do is to try to answer the questions or doubts you may have. You don't need any specific tools, get good quality replacement struts, take care when drilling the rivets, they are aluminium, but somehow I had an issue to remove them - maybe the drill was too big.
You need to get to screws that attach internal roof textile to the roof stucture. Once this is removed you'll see the struts. Struts have exactly the same security mechanism as the struts that lift the boot/bonnet - you can practice with them.
When installing the struts, remember to do that with arc lowered = struts extended.

That's from top of my head, let me know if there's anything I can help you with,
Do you not need to replace the rivets?
 

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Discussion Starter #40
Do you not need to replace the rivets?
The struts I got are identical to the originals, and came with a 2 year warranty. No rivets are involved in the process, there is a ball joint on the strut that fits onto ball on the car. Was a bit fiddly, but only a screwdriver & pliers were involved. Two of us did mine which made it a bit easier-passing things and holding etc. Just make sure you get the struts the right way around- ie replace a 100N strut with a 100N strut and 200 with a 200.
 
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