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Oh my GOD! 308 alt. swap IMPOSSIBLE!

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by samtheclip, Aug 7, 2004.

  1. samtheclip

    samtheclip Karting

    May 30, 2004
    176
    Buffalo, NY
    Full Name:
    Sam Pasceri
    OK, here is some background info on me (not that you care). I am 31 years old. Married - 2 kids. I am a barber, no not hairstylist BARBER and have been since I was 15. I am also a day trader (options trader). I have been trading for about 5 years and love it. So as you can see and I am not even close to being a mechanic and nobody in my family has any mechanical skills.

    I have owned my 81 308 GTSi for about 3 1/2 months and I love it. I have no intentions of ever going to a 328 or 348 (sorry). Since I have owned it I have changed the front - rear brakes. Change trans & motor oil. Changed the plugs. Recessed both bumpers. Dyed my seats. I did a few other minor things as well.

    Today was a big day. I finally received my long awaited radiator. I actually replaced it without any major problems. So, far not so bad for just a barber. Easy for some but, quite a chore for others (me). A while back I purchased a new 65 amp alternator. Hey, I thought what better time do it then now when the coolant is already drained. So, off I go. I removed the tire well, then the stupid heat sheild, which by the way was a huge pain in the ass! Then I lowered the coolant pipe and there she was! My alternator! I thought, wow I am getting good at this. OK, I saw the first bolt. Hmmmm, that isn't to bad but, I know I will be donating some knuckle blood on it. Oh well, it will be worth it. Then I see where the other bolt goes and where you have to remove it. WTF!!!! How can one ever reach around behind that and remove the bolt? I know it is supposed to be a pain but, this seems literally impossible! I am seriously considering removing the firewall behind the seats since I can think of 1000 times before when I would have love to have access through there. A removable wall would be nice.

    Now, my car is not on a lift. I have the rear up on drive up ramps then jacked up to remove the wheel. I have a jack and some jack stands supporting it. So, as you can see it is kind of hard to get way under there. As of right now I walked out on my job contemplating putting it back together but, I will lose sleep over it think it has got the best of me. I did my research and did a search. I read many posts. Is there any help that one can lend to help me finish this job? When I wake up in the morning I am either going to do it or say screw it and kick a tire! Hey Atlantaman let me know when you (or if you ever) visit Buffalo. I have about a 100 things you could help me with - LOL.

    God bless,
    Sam
     
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  3. jimangle

    jimangle Formula 3

    Nov 5, 2003
    2,438
    Haverford
    Full Name:
    James
    Sam,
    Have you tried to loosen the bolts at all? I had to tighten the water/alternator belt on my 308. I thought the same thing you did when I finally got in there. I was able to loosen the mount bolt without having to get anything on the backside of it. You may want to try that. I don't think it will fully come out, but then all you have to do is get a box end wrench in there and just hold the nut as you make the final turns loosening the bolt.
    Just a suggestion,
    Jim
     
  4. Darolls

    Darolls F1 Veteran
    BANNED

    Jul 2, 2003
    6,799
    Full Name:
    Sparky
    Sam-

    You need to get at the nut and bolt from underneath the car.

    You have to stretch a bit to get a wrench on the nut, but it can be done.

    Calm down, take another look, and you'll see what I mean.

    Don't let the car control you, when you get frustrated, walk away from it.

    Later, go back to it and survey the situation. Take a more logical approach.........you'll see what I mean.
     
  5. Shamile

    Shamile F1 Veteran

    Dec 31, 2002
    6,563
    Lakeland FL
    Full Name:
    Shamile
    Dear Ferraristi,


    Check out the previous treads on "308 alternator removal" I did it myself with the help and I mean BIG help from Verrel.

    I actually did it twice as when I put it back the first time, it didn't work. Of course I thought it was the alt but nooooo.....it turned out to be a dirty connector on the vehicle side. Ha ha ha......drain coolant and bleed TWICE !


    Shamile
     
  6. samtheclip

    samtheclip Karting

    May 30, 2004
    176
    Buffalo, NY
    Full Name:
    Sam Pasceri
    I never heard anything about bleeding the coolant. What do you do for this?
     
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  8. atlantaman

    atlantaman Formula 3

    Mar 31, 2002
    1,726
    Roswell, Georgia
    Full Name:
    Charles
    Sam--try this one--the pulley wheel on my alternator started coming off one morning just before a car show.

    I jacked up the rear end, removed tire and well, did NOT remove coolent tube or heatshield. unmounted and removed alternator--reparied it--reinstalled everything.
    I was on the ground running 1 hour 15 mins after starting.
     
  9. delaney

    delaney Formula Junior

    Nov 8, 2003
    658
    St Petersburg, FL
    Full Name:
    PETER DELANEY
    Sam .. it can be done .. it's just practice!

    That nut you can't get to ... as previous posts have said .. get under the car and take a flashlight ONLY. Identify the nut (other than the one under the car already .... said in jest .. we must all be nuts to love these cars!) .. then go get the wrench. As I recall I had to use 2 ..one to turn and the other to stop the bolt from turning .... actually when i think about it .. I used a socket (18 mm ???) on a small extension.

    Once you get the knack of what to do, it takes only 15 - 20 mins. to actually have the bit in your hand.

    Persevere .. next time it'll be much much easier.

    Regards,


    Pete
     
  10. Sean F.

    Sean F. F1 Rookie

    Feb 4, 2003
    3,003
    Kansas
    Full Name:
    Sean F
    Deepwell sockets and or extensions on a 1/2" drive wratchet are about the only way I was able to losen that bolt/nut. It was a ***** to get off too...but not as hard as the A/C compressor...talk about fun.

    And I also had to get it from underneat the car.
     
  11. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    6,992
    Groton, MA
    Full Name:
    Verell Boaen
    Extraced this from my post in the Old Ferrari Chat Tech Q&A archives:

    http://www.ferrarichat.com/discus/messages/112/316950.html

    (The rest of the alt removal in that thread is also applicable, with the exception that the early cars used a different mounting for the alternator pivot bracket.)

    "
    ALTERNATOR ADJUSTING BOLT REMOVAL/TIGHTENING
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    To remove or adjust the alternator tension adjusting bolt:
    To hold the nut on the back end of the alternator tension adjusting bolt you have to:

    1) Stick your hand holding a 17mm box end of a combination wrench up between the
    forward (ie front of car) edge of the horizontal heatshield that runs along under the pulley end of the engine, and behind the rearward side of the vertical heatshield for the fwd exhaust manifold. The wrench goes on the nut 'backwards'
    ie: the wrench is angled under the alternator & towards the outside of the car.

    Turn the wrench so it jams against the exhaust manifold heatshield. It will generally stay jammed long enough for you to loosten the adjusting bolt with another wrench.

    (It's almost impossible to do this with out scratching your arm or wrist on one
    of the heat shield edges - the blood sacrifice...)

    If you're lucky (fat chance) the wrench will stay on the nut until you've got the belt on & will swing down and jam itself against the alternator while you tighten the tensioning bolt again.

    Tightening the alternator pivot bolt on re-assembly:
    You have to use a socket on a long extension (10" - 12") to get to the nut for
    the alternator pivot bolt. There's just enough room to get the wrench & socket
    up beside the engine and then blindly poke the socket toward the alternator
    until you get the socket onto the alternator nut.

    The last time I pulled my alternator (for my timing bearing replacement), I
    welded some pieces of 1/4" steel rod to the two nuts, locking them so they can't
    turn. The photos are under one of the timing drive repair threads in archives.
    "
     
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  13. robertgarven

    robertgarven F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Feb 24, 2002
    5,082
    Ventura, California
    Full Name:
    Robert Garven
    Sam,

    First off I am an ex-drummer so as a barber you have more mechanic skill than I did. I have had my car 10 years and although many a good mechanic has given advice i have not let anyone touch the car. I just did the whole alt thing but on a gt4 where there is lots more room (who says gt4's aren't cool!).

    First off I think you have the car jacked up wrong. I drive onto the ramps in front, jack up the car with 2 jacks from each side then put two big jackstands in back to make the car level, and chock the front wheels, if I have to work on the the front suspension then you have to remove the front undertray cover to place the front jack stands on the relevant frame members, some more jacking around. This way you can get under the car with a creeper. I am 48 so things are getting harder for me to do but still manage. I also think since you have the car this is the time to start aquiring metric tools, and lots of them. If you are rich Snap on, if not like me, then good craftsman or SK/Facom are nice (the more tools you have the easier it is to work on your car! period!!). You need a set of saltus wrenches that have the socket on one side, they are invaluable for such aplications, also a set of gearwrenches, the ones with the lever that makes them turn both ways.

    I just did the alt thing myself and it was not easy. On my car the dipstick tube has to come off to slide the pivot bolt out(may be same on your car) and that nut was a real knuckle buster. I just put the bolt back on going the other way, not technacally correct but works! Good Luck and get a new belt.

    Rob
     
  14. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    6,992
    Groton, MA
    Full Name:
    Verell Boaen
    See this thread:

    http://www.ferrarichat.com/discus/messages/256120/296711.html

    You really need to learn how to search the Old FerrariChat archives:

    http://www.ferrarichat.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=37

    there's a half-dozen years worth of advice in it. There's almost nothing about a 3x8 that hasn't come up multiple times there.

    ------------
    Robertgarven,
    On the early 308s & GT4s, can you get the alt bracket off with the pivot bolt in place? Ie: pull the bracket instead of the pivot bolt? If not, then samtheclip is going to get real familiar with the joys of dipstick tube removal as I'm pretty sure that all the cars with the 65A alternator used the same alt mounting bracket.
     
  15. Meister

    Meister F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Apr 27, 2001
    5,228
    Duluth, MN
    Full Name:
    The Meister
    On my car, an 80 GTSi the pivot bolt was completely frozen! The only way I could get the alt out was to cut the upper alt bracket out (and buy a second hand one...$25) tilt the alt enough to remove the whole lower bracket (pivot bolt included) from the block... not fun. Best of luck
     
  16. jford10014

    jford10014 F1 Rookie

    Feb 28, 2004
    2,672
    New York, NY
    Full Name:
    Jason
    Hi,

    Here is how I did it.

    Firstly get a big wrench / torque wrench on the nut you can see.

    Then you get another socket / ratchet and put a really long extender on it (I used three extenders together – making a total of around 2 feet extension). With the rearof the car on blocks, you get under the engine with a light. You can see the back of the nut if you wiggle around down there.

    Then you put the socket with the extension up into the middle of the engine underneath the front exhaust manifold and kinda guide it over to the back of the nut. Once it’s on, if you are really lucky you can jam the ratchet in some convenient place where it will hold up under the exhaust manifold. If you are unlucky you have to hold it and try with the other arm to undo the bolt using the wrench on the front of the nut. Having an assistant here helps a great deal, although I managed to do it after several attempts.

    Wait until you put the thing back on !. Then you have to pull the alternator down to provide tension to the belt whilst performing this miracle….

    Good luck. It’s not easy but it’s doable.

    Jason
     
  17. robertgarven

    robertgarven F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Feb 24, 2002
    5,082
    Ventura, California
    Full Name:
    Robert Garven
    Verell,

    I tried to take the bracket off but could not get any tool down in there to remove the nuts, mine has some extrusion that seperate the two and I only tried for about 30 minutes so maybe itwould have worked if I would have persisted. I do know this my bolt would not come out without the dipstick removed and in backwards it will, but hopefully not for a while! Sam, Here is another set of tools you need, extentions, and lots of them and with the locking tabs on there so you wont have to drop or fish around for the socket!!!!
     
  18. WaltP

    WaltP Formula 3

    Nov 1, 2003
    1,463
    Cape Canaveral/Atlanta
    Full Name:
    Walt P
    Sam, I've been told it isn't necessary (and believe it) but I remove the fuel tank when I need access to the front of the engine for whatever reason, belts, alt., starter, etc. It doesn't take that much time and it lessens my frustration level considerably. I can sit in the wheel/ fuel tank space and reach all that I need to. It's well worth it to me.
     
  19. ham308

    ham308 Formula Junior

    Nov 3, 2003
    358
    NE Switzerland
    Full Name:
    Richard Ham
    I seem to remmeber cutting a 17mm ring spanner in half to get to this bracket nut, and then fitting another over the top of what was left in order to get leverage.

    Ah, the joys of a Ferrari...... :)
     
  20. Owens84QV

    Owens84QV F1 Rookie

    Oct 2, 2001
    4,480
    Somewhere in NC
    Full Name:
    Greg
    I looked at the alternator bracket (the bracket that you adjust the belt tension) and it looks like this bracket can go on "backwards" where the adjustment is made from the bolt that mounts into the block. In other words, flip the bracket around and put the swivel end on the alternator and place the adjustment portion of the bracket on the engine block bolt.

    Geometrically, it will work. The only problem is once you tighten the adjustment nut, is this bolt strong enough to hold the tension you need?

    Any thoughts?
     
  21. FasterIsBetter

    FasterIsBetter F1 Veteran

    Jul 22, 2004
    5,844
    NoNJ/Jupiter FL
    Full Name:
    Steve W.
    This past weekend, I was helping a friend strip down his 308 for engine removal, and one of the things I did was remove the alternator. I did remove the coolant pipe, but it was coming out anyway. Once that's out of the way, the rest is easy. One suggestion -- get a good breaker bar. It will give you the leverage you need to break the nuts loose. Remove the adjuster screw and the bracket, crack the nut on the lower bolt and drop the alternator forward, get the nut off that lower bolt and then use a drift to knock the bolt out. Disconnect the cable and bingo, you're done.

    Oh yeah, one other thing... be sure you've disconnected the negative lead to the battery.
     
  22. Owens84QV

    Owens84QV F1 Rookie

    Oct 2, 2001
    4,480
    Somewhere in NC
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    Greg
    I guess my question is "what is the harm in flipping the alternator adjustment arm around backwards so the adjustment part is bolted to the block versus bolted to the forward part of the alternator?"
     
  23. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    6,992
    Groton, MA
    Full Name:
    Verell Boaen
    The pivot for the alternatator tensioning bracket does NOT directly attach to the block. The pivot thru-bolt is attached to the cam cover.

    I suspect the cam cover boss for the bolt is strong enough, but why do you think reversing the adj bracket will make things easier in the future?

    What really makes this job easy in the future is to weld acouple of lengths of ~1/4" or 3/8" steel rod to the bolts or nuts that are hard to reach. The rods are just long enough (inch or so) so that they won't let the bolt turn. Then you only need to use a ratchet on the front ends to loosen/remove them.

    Posted some Pix in the olf fchat, but they didn't survive the hard drive crash.
     
  24. Owens84QV

    Owens84QV F1 Rookie

    Oct 2, 2001
    4,480
    Somewhere in NC
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    Greg
    Verell, what I was thinking is at least the one nut that you would need to tighten to lock down the tension on the adjuster arm is "right there" in front of you...slightly below the AC compressor housing. The only thing you'd need to remove to get to that nut would be the lower bracket for the AC compressor. At least the other end of the bolt would be fixed in the cam cover and not need an opposite force holding it tight.

    Just a thought...
     
  25. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    6,992
    Groton, MA
    Full Name:
    Verell Boaen
    Since there's a lock nut on the pivot for the slotted tension adj bracket, I don't crank it down super tight. Thus don't need to loosten it to adj alt belt tension.

    I don't have to remove anything but the fender liner to adj. my alternator belt tension. Certainly not remove the lower compressor bracket.

    For some reason I can't remember off-hand what I use to reach in to loosen/adj the bolt that slides in the slot tho. Possibly I use a combination of long extensions, a flex joint & 17mm socket. Another possibilty is my 1/2" ratchet which has a fairly long handle. I remember it sas a pain to try to get to it with just a 3/8" ratchet handle tho.

    Even before I welded the steel rod on the nuts on the other end of the bolt, it wasn't that bad to adj the belt tension. Certainly less work than removing that pesky lower alternator bracket.

    I'd just reach up between the heat shields with a long form factor 17mm combination wrench & hung the box end from the nut, remember that direction the wrench angled off of it was important. The wrench would just swing a few degrees & come to rest against the heat shield in 1 direction & the engine mount in the other as best I can recall. In either case I could tighten or loosen the bolt w/o holding the wrench hanging from the other end of it.

    Altho the tight squeeze between the heat shields generally yielded a blood offering to the great god Enzo ;)
     
  26. robertgarven

    robertgarven F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Feb 24, 2002
    5,082
    Ventura, California
    Full Name:
    Robert Garven
    I just switched the bolt around and it is much easier now!! :)
     
  27. RussF

    RussF Karting

    Nov 1, 2003
    222
    Washington
    Verrel. I can see the nut at the back of the tensioner adjustment so I will figure a way to get a wrench on it. However, I cannot see the nut at the backside of the pivot bolt. Others have made it sound easy to get at the backside nut. Any suggestions.
     
  28. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    6,992
    Groton, MA
    Full Name:
    Verell Boaen
    I see you've got a 328:
    On the QVs, 328s, & (I believe the injected cars), I don't bother fumbling around fighting to remove the pivot nut.

    The alternator mounting bracket is held by 2 studs on the front of the timing cover. I just remove the nuts pull the alternator & bracket forward off of the studs. Then it's pretty easy to rotate the alternator around & remove the cables.

    Once I have the cables off, I either remove the alternator with the bracket, or else remove the pivot bolt as it's a lot more accessable with the alternator partly rotated.

    Now for a bit of possibly bad news: Unlike the earlier 308s, the 328 passenger side gas tank has a horizontal mounting strap that fits in a U-shaped guide as it comes around the corner of the gas tank. Not sure when this guide was introduced, so it might even be some of the later QVs.

    A couple of years ago one member reported that the guide lips took up just enough space so that he couldn't get the alternator out past it. I thought I'd bookmarked the post, but couldn't find my bookmark. I can't remember how he finally got it out the rest of the way. I don't think anyone else has reported this problem, so I'm not sure if it was something about that particular car. Recommend you search the archives for '328' 'alternator' 'removal' 'removing'. I'd start with a topics search as I'm pretty sure that the topic was something like 'Removing a 328 alternator'...
     

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