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'96 F355 Spyder issues

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by Kelvin R. Coze, May 1, 2004.

  1. Kelvin R. Coze

    Silver Subscribed

    May 1, 2004
    10
    da track
    Full Name:
    KC
    I am about to purchase a '96 355 Spyder with 22,000 miles. Before finalizing deal, any major issues I should be aware of? Was the valve guide material in fact changed for a car made in Jan. '96, or am I looking at the same potential problems the '95's had? Current owner said he has not done valve guide work yet, and has not had any problems. He did have to replace both headers, so will this be a problem for me in near future possibly?

    Car has complete records, is very clean, 2 owners only. 15k svc. done at proper time.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    BTW, I am not new to Ferraris, having owned 308, 328, and 348TS prior.
     
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  3. richard_wallace

    richard_wallace Formula 3
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    Feb 6, 2004
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    Cincinnati, Ohio
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    Richard Wallace

    With 22K miles - you would have already had valve problems if you were going to...

    You should have the 15K and 30K services done on this car.. If you only have had the 15K - The 30K will need done ASAP (due to time not miles). You can figure 5 - 10K depending on the dealer/what needs to be done while you have the engine out.

    Factor the (say 5K) into the buying price - have them lower due to the need of the 30K - if they tell you it doesn't need done - they don't what they are talking about :)
     
  4. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 29, 2001
    17,070
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    Hugh G. Rection
    According to several threads on this site, the valve material was not changed until mid year 98. That certainly does not mean you will have a problem, but there is a small amount of risk. Best to have a leakdown and compression test done to see if there are any obvious problems though.... This should be mandatory on any car you are considering anyway.
     
  5. Kelvin R. Coze

    Silver Subscribed

    May 1, 2004
    10
    da track
    Full Name:
    KC
    Thanks for inputs. I'll definitely factor in 30k svc. issue into price, and get compression & leakdown test done.
     
  6. delaney

    delaney Formula Junior

    Nov 8, 2003
    658
    St Petersburg, FL
    Full Name:
    PETER DELANEY
    I have the same model/year.

    Headers went out .. replaced under warranty.

    Cats went out @ 28,000 ... replaced under warranty (by 2 months!)
     
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  8. delaney

    delaney Formula Junior

    Nov 8, 2003
    658
    St Petersburg, FL
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    PETER DELANEY
    Quote ... According to several threads on this site, the valve material was not changed until mid year 98.



    So, a whole bunch of us are driving around with the 'weaker' valve guides.

    What do you think causes some people to have problems and others not?
     
  9. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    7,004
    The actual quote is that the issue was found in the mid 95 model year, and correction began. However, heads as late as the 98 model year still suffered from this issue.
     
  10. f355spider

    f355spider F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    May 29, 2001
    17,070
    USA
    Full Name:
    Hugh G. Rection

    Mitch, you may have better (or first hand) information, but FNA seems to have identified the problem in 95, (and even had a service bulletin issued in 1996 or 97), but the production change did not appear to happen until mid to late 1998. My mechanic is working on the heads of a 1997 355 right now, and they have bronze guides...

    But, again, not all cars are affected...most seem to be fine, even if they have the bronze guides.
     
  11. Ade

    Ade Formula 3

    Jan 31, 2004
    2,095
    UK
    Look out the see whether CAT ECUs have been replaced. Always a good thing as causes lots of hastle when they go wrong (engine shuts down etc) although not very expensive to change. Known weak area.

    Look for wear on Fabric hood just above driver's and passenger's head. this is where it folds when down and you don't want to let this completely wear through as lots of hastle to patch. Also check hood hood operation is smooth as I know several people who have spent thousands on trying to gremlins out the system but with little success (mine still makes an awful groaning noise)- you need one thats been looked after.

    If previous owner had problems with headers, check he has other work done to car at same time during fix - like spark plugs replaced if fouled, and CAT condition checked. Just a sign that its been properly looked after I'd say.

    Also, when belts were changed was it engine out or engine in?? The value of an engine out is quite high I would say for a 22,000 mile 355 engine. You would have wanted the previous owner to fully inspect to engine for others problems, repaint the cam-covers, go the extra mile.

    Just a few ideas, things I've had to get done etc. Good luck
    Ade
     
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