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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey Everyone

Its been a while since I've posted anything, the main reason being that ive been enjoying the hell out of my jalpa. However, I was fortunate enough to bump into a fellow jalpa owner, who told me that his car had just dropped an exhaust valve into the cylinder and is going to be out of service for a while.(Im not trying to disguise any damages on my car to him. My car is truthfully in good condition, I just want my car to last for as long as I can get it too)

My jalpa has been good to me in my 3 years of ownership, and I feel its time to get those sodium valves out. I feel that its a ticking time bomb waiting to empty my bank account.

Has anyone recently had their valves replaced? If so what did you replace them with?
Id also like to change the cam bearings, as I've read that might be the cause of the cold tapping noise that seems to plague most jalpas.

Is there anything else that I should get done whilst my engine is out ? I would like to make an access hatch in my firewall to make changing the far side plugs easier, or would i just end up creating structural issues in the firewall/bulkhead?

I have been in contact with Jalpa.ch , and will use all of the fantastic info available there, but I would like to ask if other jalpa owners have done anything to make their cars any more reliable or better?

Any and all info will be greatly appreciated.

I've also been put in contact with a restoration service in Capetown, who say that they can do the modifications. I understand that I am one of a handful of South African owners, however if anyone has any opinions on them , I would greatly appreciate it before sending my car to them. I have yet to find any bad reviews on them, however I would like to ask around before I open my wallet.
If they are no good, I would just do the service myself.
This is the link to their site:
Crossley & Webb: The Motoring Investment Specialists

Thanks Guys
Happy cruising
Yash

Owner:1983 Jalpa RHD Eurospec "Isabella"
 

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Something to keep in mind...a Jalpa or Urraco 4 cam motor is one of the more difficult, complex motors you will ever run into..;)

Over the last 20 years I have watched more than a half dozen DIY guys attack the "rebuild"...never to be heard from again.

The cost of parts (valves are cheap) is astronomical if available at all.

I have no idea what things are like in South Africa...but I would budget some serious money for the rebuild !

Paul
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Thanks for the fast reply Paul!

I understand things will become expensive.I don't think that anyone who owns one of these cars expected ownership to be cheap, and nobody ever should. Its not so much as a financial investment, more of a love of the look, sound and feel that the Jalpa gives, and I just want to keep it going for as long as I possibly can. My car was neglected by its previous owners, and I wanna make sure that never happens again.


In your experience with the engines or Lamborghini's in general, is there anything that you have done to keep them healthy? Perhaps a product that has worked well for you or any preventative maintenance that has kept the cars running longer?

In terms of things in South Africa, we do have agents for Lamborghini, they'r known as the Imperial Collection and I've heard that the head mechanic is an awesome guy who knows his stuff, but I have yet to track him down.

Thanks Again for the fast reply. I understand you must be busy, and I appreciate you taking the time to help me out.
Best Wishes
Yash
 

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I would contact Lee T. on this list...he recently put together a fresh Jalpa motor...so he has a good idea regarding parts availability/cost

Paul
 

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Over on the other Lamborghini Forum, there is an engine rebuild being documented. This might be another good source of information and the owner a good contact to have.

I had my engine rebuilt a few years ago. It has been treating me pretty well ever since. I believe I am past due for a carb rebuild, but I think that falls under general upkeep. You can find my old thread here in this section about 6 years back.... Wow.... 6 years now.

If you decide for a full rebuild, there are a handful of upgrades that people recommend. Many are listed on the Jalpa site you mentioned.
 

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Exhaust valves
Yes it is a ticking time bomb, but with a hidden timer.
I changed mine to stainless steel, by buying a set of Chevy LS3, 1.600", 8mm, Exhaust Valves and machined them to the OE dimension, except adjusted the heights, so I could use my old shims directly. The previous shop had removed the valve stem seals, which I re-installed and made provisions for letting a slight amount of oil pass.
A machine shop supplied with a sample of the old valve should be able to make the conversion.

Cam bearings
There are no dedicated bearings. The cams run in the cylinder head casting.

Cold tapping noise
This is very likely the chain that chatters against at least one of the two guides. Item #6 here: Lamborghini Jalpa 3.5 (1984) - Distribution: Page 003 | Order Online Eurospares
Chains too lose and the "tapping" noise occurs (almost sounds like a bad con rod bearing). Chains too tight and you at best will need to install aftermarket cam bearings. So it is a delicate balance.

Access hatch
The later models (1986? and on) had this access hatch. If you don't have the annoying US Carburetor boxes, then adding and subtracting short socket extenders while removing and installing the spark plugs is not too bad.

Increase reliability
1. Heat in engine compartment
a) Make sure all heat shields are installed
b) Fabricate and add heat shields between just under the cam covers and the engine room walls.
c) Get as much heat out the exhaust as possible by thermally coating the exhaust (in- and outside) and/or wrap the exhaust.
2. Water pump, internal oxidation/rust
a) Always use 50/50 coolant. It lubricates the water pump seal and minimizes corrosion especially at the outside of the water jacket, where crud collects and can cause thermal distortion of the (ductile iron) cylinder liners, including leaks to the oil sump.
3. Use synthetic oil. If for nothing else, it has a higher coking point, which reduces abrasive carbon deposits.

Cheers,
Laust
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks guys. I've started ordering the parts, and I got a pretty good quote for the engine modifications. I will document the whole
process and update you guys.

Happy crusing
Yash
 
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