GTS Tune Up and 330 Stuck Head
GTS Tune Up, and 330 Stuck Head
I finished up the valve adjustment on the 330GTS at the shop this week. There were a couple worn valve adjusters, but the tops of the valves looked to be in good shape. The distributors were removed so I could change and phase the points, and set dwell.
The owner wanted us to take a look at the heating system, and the first thing we found was the heater control valve was blocked off. I’m hoping this valve was blocked off to eliminate heat from the passenger compartment, and not hiding a larger problem like a leaking heater core.
Looking inside the heater valve, I found a home made diaphragm made from inner tube repair pieces. A correct one piece diaphragm is readily available from the usual Ferrari parts suppliers, and should do a better job at sealing the valve than this piece. Maybe this valve was leaking and the previous owner blocked it off to stop the leak?
An obvious problem we found with this 330GTS was it had not received the front suspension update the factory warned about 45 years ago. I’ve written about this recall notice several times before, and I’m always amazed when I find another car without this very important update.
The repair involves a small piece of steel that is welded to the shock mount to strengthen the weak suspension mount.
The each side of the front suspension is supported by this little loop of steel, and Ferrari had some catastrophic failures back in the late 60s when the left mount broke and jammed into the steering shaft just above this mount. With the steering locked in place, you can imagine the total loss of control.
I fabricated steel inserts to fit inside the open spaces so they could be welded in place. This is probably the fourth car we’ve repaired in the last three years, and I’m still on a quest to get them all! I don’t have to personally weld them all, but if you own one of these cars, and your shop hasn’t caught this issue, please ask them why they haven’t done it yet!
The 330 engine at the shop refused to let go of its 7/12 head. It was really stuck and even with a head puller attached, it refused to budge. Going too fast when trying to remove a stuck head can lead to disastrous results. The best solution is to apply steady pressure, penetrating oil, and time.
The 1/6 head came off a little easier, but certainly not without a fight. The white residue on the head studs gives a hint as to why the 7/12 head is not moving. Small coolant leaks in head gaskets caused electrolytic corrosion between the aluminum head and the steel head studs. This oxidation locks the two pieces together pretty tightly. Penetrating oil and steady pressure will eventually get things to release, but too much pressure can cause the head to crack, so we’ll have to be very careful.
Reminder: If you have a Ferrari related project, car, or idea you’d like to explore, I’d love to talk to you. I can also help if you’re thinking of buying or selling. This website represents what I love to do, and I would be happy to help guide you through the Vintage Ferrari world so if you’d like to do something together, let me know. It all begins with an e-mail!
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