Malcolm Street’s Alfa Romeo 33 TI “Kenny”

31 Dec 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Malcolm Street’s Alfa Romeo 33 TI “Kenny”
Alfa Romeo 33

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Why Kenny?

After my third blow-up on the race track (see The Many Deaths of Kenny ) in nine club race meetings, and having not had a name for the car at that stage, I decided that it would be appropriate to name it after Kenny . the, er, longevity-challenged character from South Park .

As I had better things to do with my money than pay four-figure repair bills, Kenny spent a quiet 1999, not going anywhere near a race track. However, the new millenium dawned and full of hope I took Kenny out on the track for the first time in 18 months on 7th February, 2000 at Wakefield Park.

No, this time Kenny didn’t have an engine or gearbox failure. Instead he broke part of the left-hand rear Watts linkage due to a fatigue crack! Further investigation at Autotech revealed three other cracks at the front end, and so I took the hint.

Mechanical failures can break the budget, but structural failures can break your neck.

Thus Kenny will stay away from racing from now on, as the racetrack is obviously far too dangerous for him.

Kenny’s final score is four failures out of ten contested AROCA events!

So Kenny has spent the last couple of years confined to public roads. There was a postscript to the fatigue failure of the Watts linkage; in December 2000 it went again, this time on a public road, fortunately within Canberra! Took it to Autotech and they replaced it, then removed the urethane bushes from the rear suspension and went back to rubber.

It appears that the 33/Sud rear suspension can’t stand up to the reduced compliance of the urethane material; be warned!

I occasionally think of moving to another car, but I can’t think of anything else that combines driving fun with practicality, reasonable economy and character without spending a lot more. Not to mention after working on it for so long I know almost every nut and bolt on it.

Alfa Romeo 33

Recent work on Kenny

April 2002: Mostly routine servicing over the last two years apart from another broken Watts link as described above. Four new tyres and regassed hatch struts January 2002. Very stupidly poured some c. 12 year-old fuel I found in the shed into Kenny and needless to say ended up with a tank half-full of water.

Had that corrected, brake fluid replaced and also the (leaking) heater core replaced by Moro Motors, in Mitchell, ACT. (No offense to Autotech who’ve serviced the car previously; it’s just that with my work now being at the University of Canberra Fyshwick is a long way away!). Central locking as temperamental as ever, but I am at last getting the high beam to (intermittently) work again!.

April 2000: Replaced worn out right-hand front door rubber. Finally traced problem with instrument panel lights to faulty soldering in the rheostat module. Replacement soon to be purchased. Removed race harness as Kenny was not to race again (sob!)

February 2000: Before 7th February race meeting: preparations for new club racing season. New steering wheel, full race harness, modified spacers below driver’s seat to give (slightly) more helmet room. After 7th February race meeting: off to Autotech Alfa (yet again. ) for replacement of broken Watts linkage arm, three other fatigue cracks around the front end found and welded up, rear muffler replaced.

December 1999: changed the oil, restarted and smelled petrol. Opened the bonnet and saw a 1 cm gash in one of the fuel hoses, and petrol spraying everywhere! Apparently just gave up due to old age; just as well it didn’t happen on the race track! Kenny has now had a complete change of fuel hoses.

Finally got the headlights to stay on after finding loose connections.

The Many Deaths of Kenny!

Alfa Romeo 33
Alfa Romeo 33
Alfa Romeo 33
Alfa Romeo 33
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