Part III – Tidying up the 1963 Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint…

In the process of cleaning up the engine compartment and spending some time poking around the car and online, I learned a few things. In no particular order:

WD-40 is effective at cleaning the engine compartment although it will not remove the heaviest grease but light to moderate oily residue can be effectively eliminated without major toxic fumes. Ventilation suggested anyway. I bought a one gallon container.  It may last for many years….depending on how many cars I need to clean! Must wear nitrile gloves and using rags dipped in the solvent start wiping and you’ll be amazed.

Corroded thermostat housings may be repaired using products such as JB Weld. I used the version of the product that cures in 15-24 hours and it worked really well and achieved an even sandable/paintable surface.


Pitted and corroded thermostat housing – top view


bottom view – more pitting. Hose may leak if fitted without repair.



after initial application of the JB Weld product.


after about 4 hours it dried to a dark grey color


thermostathousing1 24 hours later, after full cure and sanding, the result was an even and very hard surface.

It is best to remove the pedal box from the car when rebuilding the master cylinder. You will also be able to remove many years’ worth of crud from the catch basin at the bottom of the box.  There is a handy detachable plate just for cleaning the area.  I learned that the not all master cylinder rebuild kits are sold with the large copper washer.


Pedals were powder coated. Hardware cadmium plated. Shafts lubricated.


Master cylinder brushed to natural finish and dressed with metal wax.


I learned that it is best to bleed the master cylinder on the bench. If you install a dry master cylinder after applying just the red brake grease, an air pocket will prevent fluid from entering the unit.  If that happens after installation, no need to remove it from the car, just slacken the output (forward position) fitting and drape a rag over the fitting to catch any fluid spray, then pump the pedal and watch the fluid level in the reservoir drop and you will then know that the master cylinder is receiving the fluid. Then re-tighten the fitting and proceed with bleeding the brakes. I learned that the Speed Bleeder fitting is useful for one-man bleeding jobs.    IMG_5169

  1. I learned that not all 101 Giulia Sprints had a back seat as mine does.  I learned that if you repair the springs in the front seat you will sit higher in the car and headroom will be diminished.  This requires a new seating position.

    Yes, there is a back seat but there is zero leg room with me behind the wheel. So I’ll use as a parcel shelf.IMG_5194

    I learned that the P-shaped hose coming off the heater tap is a rare thing. It is bent quite sharply without kinking and that has led me to believe it is a pre-formed hose.  I have not been able to source a similar replacement.


    Note the special shaped hose that goes from the intake manifold to the heater tap.

    The engine compartment cleans up nicely and that when properly tuned, the motor is silent and smooth. More to follow soon.. IMG_5167


    Engine compartment now much cleaner and the motor is running well to boot.

Leave a Reply