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Fiat 128 Rallye 8V - Page 2
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Thread: Fiat 128 Rallye 8V

  1. #11
    Amministratore Fiat500USA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5port View Post
    Great post. Im embarrased to admit I learned to shift a 4 speed on my 128 and burnt the clutch out the first month. My best friend lived on a steep hill and I had to come to a stop sign to get to his house. That stop sign blew my clutch. $350 later for replacement I never lost a clutch again.

    Yup snapped cables happened so much started to carry an extra and I could change it on the fly.

    Very jealous of your yellow Rally 128. Very rare in these parts. I use to dream about finding one.
    Well, it was likely 9/10 already worn out. You probably already know this, but when the clutch cable on a 128 keeps going bad, it is likely because the ground wire is no good. That was a big problem for them. I think there was a tech bulletin for that. Ever since then, I've always run an auxiliary ground cable on all my Italian cars.
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  3. #12
    AWD enthusiast Lifetime Member 5port's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fiat500USA View Post
    Well, it was likely 9/10 already worn out. You probably already know this, but when the clutch cable on a 128 keeps going bad, it is likely because the ground wire is no good. That was a big problem for them. I think there was a tech bulletin for that. Ever since then, I've always run an auxiliary ground cable on all my Italian cars.
    Didnt know that at all! Where were you in 1975? Just kidding. Thanks Chris.
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    Senior Member HalfPint's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fiat500USA View Post
    Sounds like a hot car! Figures you had a problem driving it home. Many (most?) of the problems these cars had were some sloppy mechanic doing a half baked job. Lowering the 128 made a big difference compared to the sky-high US spec springs they used. I bet it ran good.

    In the 90s I missed my 128 so much I bought a brand new fuel injected Yugo. That car had Bosch Motronic injection and electronic ignition, a 5-speed and was like a fast, reliable 128. I never had a problem with it other than the Ford sourced inertia switch. The fuel injected Yugos were a night and day difference compared to the Bricklin imported carbureted Yugos.

    I used to always mess with the advance on my car. I read a book on it when I as a kid, so naturally I had to screw with it. I had a 70 Duster and I bought set of advance springs from Mopar Direct Connection for it. I was putting them in and my brother-in-law took over for some reason and yanked the wrong spring out and messed it up. The kit came with 2 springs but you were only supposed to use one of the springs for street use. We had to use both to replace the messed up spring and I wound up getting full advance at like 1200 rpm! back then you could buy factory advance springs for any year, so I grabbed some from a pre-68 engine to fix the screw up.

    A lot of Italian cars used vacuum retard and slow advance curves for emission reasons. Desmogging the old cars greatly improved how they ran and going back to Euro-specs made a big difference. The last car I messed with the advance was my Alfa when I got a European distributor for it.
    I had my eye on the Yugo when they first came out, before they were injected. At the time I was still driving the 128, and the only advantage I could see was the 5 speed - not to minimize that. In fact I was living in Southern Maryland for a time, but still driving back to PA a lot. Route 301 across the Delmarva peninsula from Annapolis up towards Middletown late at night at a steady 5000rpm gets kinda old, so I wanted something that could cruise a bit better. Traded the Fiat for an '86 Escort GT. It was pretty cool, but it wasn't my Fiat. If they'd had the injected Yugos I might have gone for it.

    I did find out about the ground issue in regard to the clutch cable, but I don't know how. How in the hell did we learn this stuff before the internet?

    Oh, I bought the 128 in 1983, not 1980 - just a brain fart.
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    AWD enthusiast Lifetime Member 5port's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5port View Post
    Didnt know that at all! Where were you in 1975? Just kidding. Thanks Chris.
    The sad thing here is that as an Electronic Technician I worked in the Defense industry and I had constant access to ground braid that I could have used to connect the engine block to the car body. It sounds like the clutch cable would share the starting current and eventually act like a fuse. Wish I would have known.
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    Senior Member HalfPint's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5port View Post
    The sad thing here is that as an Electronic Technician I worked in the Defense industry and I had constant access to ground braid that I could have used to connect the engine block to the car body. It sounds like the clutch cable would share the starting current and eventually act like a fuse. Wish I would have known.
    I had a '94 F250, and they were known to lose the ground return to the alternator/engine block too - for some reason the current would flow through the front wheel bearings. You can imagine what the pitting would do to those in short order!
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    Amministratore Fiat500USA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5port View Post
    Didnt know that at all! Where were you in 1975? Just kidding. Thanks Chris.
    Haha! Thanks. I was buried in car magazines and driving my father crazy taking his car apart.

    PS. For those reading, this is something to watch on any car.. Sometimes it is the accelerator cable that becomes the ground path.
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  11. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by HalfPint View Post
    I had my eye on the Yugo when they first came out, before they were injected. At the time I was still driving the 128, and the only advantage I could see was the 5 speed - not to minimize that. In fact I was living in Southern Maryland for a time, but still driving back to PA a lot. Route 301 across the Delmarva peninsula from Annapolis up towards Middletown late at night at a steady 5000rpm gets kinda old, so I wanted something that could cruise a bit better. Traded the Fiat for an '86 Escort GT. It was pretty cool, but it wasn't my Fiat. If they'd had the injected Yugos I might have gone for it.

    I did find out about the ground issue in regard to the clutch cable, but I don't know how. How in the hell did we learn this stuff before the internet?

    Oh, I bought the 128 in 1983, not 1980 - just a brain fart.

    Yeah, the first generation carburetor ones had their teething issues, so good call. The cars got a lot better when Zastava took over the importation of the cars and got rid of Bricklin. The quality improved greatly. I think of them like modern equivalent to Citroen 2CV back then. Just a simple car. For me, it was like a new, 20 year old 128. My friend who owned a Fiat shop would install the fuel injection and 5-speeds into 128s.

    I had a new '88 Escort GT for a demo at dealer I worked for. It was a fun car. I loved the transmission, which felt stout and robust compared to the rather fragile 128 transmission. I bet it was a lot more relaxed on the highway!

    If I didn't hook up with my friend who worked at Fiat/Alfa dealers all during the 70s, I wouldn't have known about the clutch cable. I helped him out at his shop on and off for 20 years and picked up a lot of trivia on the cars. There would likely be no way I could have owned any of these cars without having my friend Tony teaching me to work on them. Tony had a great knowledge of Italian cars and Al Cosentino from FAZA would even call him for advice. I lucked out having him for a friend.
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