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S3 Clutch problems - stack-up height.

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My 1981 S3 has been converted to an Afla Busso V6 by a previous owner and I'm sorting some problems with the clutch. It had been standing for quite a while and when I tried to drive it around to the workshop, the clutch was stuck. Starting it in gear freed it off, but the bite point was very low. It was initially just about driveable, but started to drag and I was only able to select gears by stopping the engine and then restarting in gear. I managed to not get stranded in the middle of the street.

The setup is an Alfa dual mass flywheel and clutch cover (a mix of 164 and 166, or possibly 916 parts) with a Maserati Merak clutch plate. The previous owner found it quite heavy and ended up with a cut-n-shut Chevvy truck slave cylinder (1-1/16" bore). This is probably oart of the low bite point problem, since the travel is going to be reduced compared to the stock 7/8" bore. I thought they'd welded the lugs on crooked, but it looks like the release lever fulcrum is slightly bent to one side. It has the top mounted cylinder with return spring. From what I can work out, the stroke of this cylinder is much more limited than the later side mount style, so to get enough travel, it has to fully return, hence the spring. The also means that the freeplay gets eaten up as the clutch wears. I decided to check if the freeplay was excessive, but had a real struggle getting the spring unhooked. Eventually I managed it by packing it out with penny washers. To my surprise, there was not only no freeplay, but the clutch was preloaded. Having backed it off, I fully expected the clutch to fail to release, but in fact the bite point was slightly improved. The excessive return spring tension had me wondering about the position of the release arm and I'm now thinking that the Alfa clutch may not have the same stack-up height as the Lotus setup. I may have to make a spacer, or modify the release arm slightly.

If anyone has a measurement from block face to clutch cover fingers, that would be most helpful.

As it is, I think I'm going to have to pull the gearbox and investigate the release arm being off centre.

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