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I've got a checklist of stuff (literally, I made a list) that I need to get done on my 147 so I quite like the idea of this thread.

Fixed an exhaust rattle today that's been driving me up the wall for weeks. I was wondering how to secure the heatshield for ages and then it hit me... Jubilee clip, duh! It was noticeably clanking around just above idle, but it must have been making more noise than that because there is now a constant peaceful calm in the cabin which was not there before. Only a simple thing, but very happy, drove it around the block with a grin on my face!

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With a little trepidation I was going to have a look for the source of the oil that's been leaking all over the sump. I thought it might be a seal or a gasket or something, I only noticed it recently and it definitely hasn't always been like it. Turns out some chump (yes me) hadn't tightened the sump plug properly after the last oil change. I gave it about a quarter turn and it's nice and tight now. Cleaned all the oil off, will check it again soon to be sure but reckon I've cured it.

Driver's side rear door latch didn't work on the inside so had the door card off to investigate. Nothing broken, just the rod popped off. Catch still worked if I pulled it by hand. Took me a few minutes to work out how to reattach the rod by feel alone, works great now and youngest is happy, that's his side and he always thought I'd got the child lock on. Not so!

While I had the card off I thought I'd have a go at doing something about that nasty gunky sticky stuff they put on the handles so anything that was gunky is now in the kitchen in various states of disassembly, soaking in acetone, primed or painted. No idea how long the paint's going to last but it's gotta be better than having that nasty goop everywhere. The handle looks way better, just matt black, a few thick coats of matt laquer ought to help with the longevity. I'll probably have them finished and back in by the weekend. Then only three more doors to go!

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Dr Pepper box = makeshift stand!
 

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Put the door card back on with the painted handle etc. Let my 10 year old do a fair bit of the work, he seemed to enjoy it. Need to sort the rubber plug thing out, guessing spray paint won't last long on it but can't really think of anything else to use.
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Compared to the other side it's like night and day. This stuff is disgusting!
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The correct sort of paint applied correctly with the correct primer should provide reasonable wear characteristics. I find hobby paint quite good, and if you use some primer that is matched for it it should work well. Otherwise maybe plasti-dip to recreate the soft touch finish. I've used that on other cars, albiet on a panel that is touched far less.
I'm hoping the paint on the handle at least will hold up, it's been primed, painted and four coats of matt lacquer applied. As for the plasti-dip, sounds like good stuff, I'll see if I can try it out on the rubber plug things - thanks! :)
 

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There`s something slightly scary about working under axle stands in an earthquake zone!
Yikes, I find it scary enough at the best of times! But then I'm a bit chicken about touching the suspension too, so I'm not sure it means much! :)
 
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Cleaned the bugs off... 😆 After pic to follow, was dark by the time I finished!
 

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All better.

It's not your eyes, btw, the bonnet is slightly brighter than the wings in real life. I think a previous owner had it resprayed and then the paint has faded at different rates. Would be interested to see what difference a professional could make to it with a machine polish. I've only ever done it by hand.
 

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I don't think it would do much. The base colour coat is under the clearcoat. As a rule, polishing and compound products only help to restore clear coat finishes these days. Until, of course someone just polishes a little too much and removes the clear coat. Generally when bonnets are re-sprayed the wings are partially sprayed too, but it appears to not be the case here. My car is mutli-tone silver from resprays. Still better than patches of clear coat lifting!
Good point, there is a small amount of peel on the top lip of the tailgate and a patch on the roof where the laquer lifted slightly after I left the roof bars on for a couple of weeks. Regretted that! However... There are other parts of the car where I don't think clear coat has been used, like the front bumper and some damage around one of the wheel arches. I always assumed, based on that, that Alfa didn't use a clear coat at all. Clearly a mix of paint types have been used. At any rate I'm sure a polish would improve the appearance. It's dull and very swirly in a few places.
 

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When I polish the car it definitely turns the rag red. There's a body shop around the corner from me, been meaning to give them a call for about two years now (not the only one who takes a while to get around to these things!). Think I will soon, but there are some jobs I must do first.

I don't know why I think this, but I've got a feeling one time the car was in the garage a mechanic sat in the drivers seat and poked their thumbnail all around the top of the gear knob. I don't remember what it was like beforehand, so I couldn't say for sure. When I looked I couldn't find a new leather one so I just got a plastic one from eBay. Not quite as nice but it's just a gear knob, and I'd rather have one that looks like it's meant to be there than a nice one from another car that doesn't quite fit somehow.

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Drove around the block to try it out... Not entirely necessary 😆 . By the time I got back I was thinking about driving and pretty much forgot it was different.

I am wondering if I could refurb the old one somehow. I should probably just put it in the bin!
 

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Well... Having looked a bit closer, the silver cap is actually metal. It's going to be really trivial to sand it and respray it. So I think I'm going to give it a try, and get some of that flexible leather filler to fill in the scuffs and the gap around the outside of the knob. Will update with how I get on, when I get around to it. I think it will work. What condition is yours in?
 

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Hi Guva, don't know anything about garages in Finland, sorry. I wonder if you might have more luck if you start a new thread though? "Looking for Alfa specialist in Finland", something like that? Probably someone here will know about the problem you're having if you also describe it.
 

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Fitted a new set of Philips Ultinon X-Treme (that I received as replacement, outside of warranty) last night - and just ordered the whole lot of parts for cam belt replacement (coming up in a month or so) this morning :)
I have a cambelt to do too, complete with water pump, variator repair kit, and a new radiator which I decided to do at the same time since both jobs will require changing the coolant. All the parts are on a shelf in my bedroom, where it's clean and dry. Should do something about it really, I need to set aside a full Saturday with good weather because I know it will take me hours!

I did debate whether to just fork out for a new variator. Current one's only slightly rattly at start up so I'm sure the repair kit will work fine, but it would save me time on the day if I didn't have to muck about with it. They're just so expensive now.
 

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Gave the tin snips a good workout and cut the remains of the cruddy outer skin off my back box.

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Happy to see it gone. It was making me itch!

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The rubber hangers are a little perished so I've ordered some new ones. Thinking when I get them I'll take the back box off and paint it black to hide the rust before reattaching it. Tailpipe has stayed oddly shiny, must be different somehow.
 

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I had a talk with the mechanic yesterday. Turns out my GT was crashed quite badly, so it's patched up almost all round. It pains me a bit, but at the same time if it's fixed up properly (as I haven't noticed it while driving it) what's really the harm in it?
Must have been a bit upsetting if you didn't already know. There are good repairs and bad repairs. Not ideal that it's been in an accident, you might not have gone for it if you knew, but if everything has been done properly it's not so bad. I guess your garage had an opinion?

This afternoon on the 147 I was going to make a start on some stuff I wanted to do before we go on holiday on Monday. First quick job was replacing the rubber exhaust hangers, during the course of which I discovered the weld on the strut from the back box had pretty much rusted away. It came off in my hand. Currently the exhaust is hanging on by one hanger, took it to a local garage to see if they could fit a new back box at short notice. Turns out my neighbour works there, familiar face behind the counter, he got it up on the ramp and we looked at it together. Fitting isn't a problem, it's sourcing one, none of their usual suppliers have any in stock. I've since looked online and found a place around the corner from me that should be able to supply one. I'll be ringing them first thing to see.

I often end up saying, "I wish I never touched that." This is one of those moments.

While I was standing outside the house, having just drained the oil (which needed doing anyway), contemplating whether to start on replacing the cambelt, another neighbour came by. I told him what I was doing and realised I'm stressing myself out because although the belt's only got 30,000 miles on it, it's been on there four years and I have only recently learnt that's a problem. But I'm not going to get it done in two afternoons when the kids are about and I should be doing a ton of other things anyway.

"Why do you do this to yourself?" he asked me. It's a fair question. I changed the filter, topped up with fresh oil and put my tools away.

The kids are away with their mum for a couple of weeks in August. I'm going to do it then. And I really hope I can get a new back box sorted by the weekend!
 

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Today I've had a new problem, bit of a rattle when I drive.. I think this might be the culprit. Can anyone tell me what part this is and if it's supposed to be loose/rattle please? Also if not can anyone think of a cheap/DIY solution to stop it?

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Yeah, that's a heat shield. It's a very common problem for them to come loose, and it looks like someone's tried to fix yours in place with metal cable ties. There should be two bolts, one through each slot there, but more than likely the threads have rusted away and you'd never get a bolt in even if you had the right size.

The standard fix is to find some chunky self tapping bolts or screws, and a couple of big penny washers. Here's what mine looks like, been done for three years now and hasn't moved:


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Some people think it's okay to take the heat shield off but I wouldn't recommend it. The cat behind gets extremely hot and the heat shield is there to protect other components in the engine bay.

Hope that helps!
 

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Sorted my back box. Nowhere I asked could fit me in before the weekend, which is entirely reasonable, so I sourced the part and did it myself. Very grateful to my neighbour for helping me get the old one off. It was stuck fast!

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It’s a different design to the Alfa one and a bit more discreet but not anything special. It’s literally just the only one I could find at short notice!

Wondering about chrome exhaust tips now…
 
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Nice to see some pics :cool:

After a terrible experience with some part worns I swore only to buy premium tyres, and in the decade since then I've only bought Goodyear. I replaced the part worns with Duragrip, the car was nothing special (90s Fiesta, 1.25 sigma engine) but it was transformed with those tyres. I could throw it around corners with confidence. My next car got the Efficientgrip and the 147 got them too. Never really considered Eagle F1, just stuck with what I know, partly because of the lower rolling resistance. Only thing that would put me off about the Eagles is the assymmetric tread, I know it's beneficial for grip but it means you can't necessarily swap the wheels around if you need to. More than anything I generally end up with Goodyear tyres because, as mentioned earlier, they tend to be the best rated least expensive premium tyre I can find.

When I got the 147 it had Falken tyres on the front. I know some people rate them but they were definitely not as grippy and wore down way more quickly than I expected. Much as I was happy to get rid of them I was surprised how quickly I needed to! Premium is always worth the money, in my opinion.
 
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Got my aircon regassed and... argh... they didn't put the plastic caps back on the valves. Assume this isn't dangerous but it makes me twitch a bit. Is nice to have cold air through the blowers though!

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I've also got a bit of time to myself, kids are staying with their mum and I'm working from home, half days, so should be able to get lots done you'd think. Plan is to replace the radiator (which leaked for a while after flushing it when I changed the thermostat, then mysteriously stopped), change cambelt, variator, coolant pump and auxiliary belt. Thought I'd start with the radiator and it's been a pain in the backside so far, the front bumper is halfway off, most of the bolts were siezed up but I managed to free them up with a gallon of plusgas and this...
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Thought I was so clever, didn't I? All fine until I got to the one at the bottom on the drivers side and as I tried to turn it I could see the mount behind it rotating. It just will not budge. Then this...
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So I took myself off to Parrs, bought the proper deal for my 3/8" wrench, still can't get it undone and slightly bent the teeth on the new bit. I'm going to have to drill it.

One positive, I changed my headlight bulb in the dark in a car park in Devon last week and the old bulb tumbled down the back. Did my best to find it, felt around under the bumper and was a bit worried it might fall in the road and go in mine or someone else's tyre but it really seemed to have vanished. Today, over 300 miles later, I found it wedged in against the bumper mount behind the arch liner. Good save! :D

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Tomorrow I'm going to ignore the radiator and just get on with the cambelt. The car's up on axle stand, wheel off, lining out, aux belt off too, so I can just get on with it. I think out of the two jobs it's going to be the quickest and since it's not leaking any more I don't think it's a disaster if the rad doesn't get done by the end of the week.
 

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The joys of unforeseen issues!

Your engine tower thingy is intact at least, one of mine is completely rusted away but it has zero bearing on the how the rest of the car functions so I've just filed mine down and rust protected what remains...

My car's got a slow coolant leak, definitely isn't the HG as I can smell it evaporating in the engine bay somewhere. Will have to investigate further, the radiator is ancient so it could be that...
Yeah, it's definitely the stuff you don't anticipate that takes the time.

I'm pretty sure my radiator stopped leaking because the water around here is so hard. You can see all the pink residue down the edge where it has leaked before, and for about two weeks I was monitoring it, until it stopped there was a slow steady drip underneath. But it's dry as a bone now, so I think it just got scaled up and blocked the leak!
 
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