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popsprockets Fiat X1/9

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  • popsprockets Fiat X1/9

    well i'm only 18 but i like old cars, it happens i guess.

    unadvisedly as my first car i bought a 1979 (31 this year) Fiat X1/9, it wasn't (isn't) running and has a few rust issues but is a very straight car overall

    i have about 2 months worth of progress so i'll condense it and add lots of pretty pictures for you all

    so this is how i bought it, with 4 years of crap collected from its last clean:

    its spent most of its time in my possession up on axle stands since the brakes didnt work owing to a stuck master cylinder but parts are becoming thin on the ground and postage out of europe is killer, so i have been amassing parts while doing a few other minor modifications.

    it had this pinstripe on it:

    which i removed:

    and i have put some temporary carpet in the passengers side (the drivers side has rust that needs to be cut out first) until the interior moves up the list of things to do. you can buy moulded carpets on ebay so ill do that when i get there:

    so changing the brake/clutch master in these cars is a massive pain because of how small they are

    eventually i gave up trying to remove them and took the clutch/brake pedal assembly box out entirely:

    *lots of time waiting*

    and cleaned it up and have put in all new cylinders (they are only test fitted in the picture)

    i also thought there was a coolant leak, but there wasnt because when i pulled the radiator hoses off i nearly drowned heres the radiator as it came out:

    and here it is all cleaned up ready to go back - i actually cant get it back in the car is too twisted from the axle stands, so ill have to come up with another solution to that

    and lastly the front spoiler was a bit damaged because it hangs so close to the ground so i bogged it up and fixed its problems:

    tomorrow in fact i should be getting the last parts i need before i can put the brakes back together and put my beauty back on her feet

    sorry for the long post, but you are now up to speed

  • #2
    nice, with alittle bit of work that will turn out to be a real beauty..most of us appreciate older cars so i dont imagine youd get many complaints, the only thing i can suggest would be to re-paint the interior dash, iv always hated the 70's mission brown look ( on cars & houses ) > . < but otherwise very keen to see more updates


    • #3

      Nice car.

      You're quite brave restoring a fiat. As you say, parts are sparse overseas, let alone in Australia. Perhaps there's inter-compatabilities with other fiats available?

      You can thank for the rust to the Russian steel used building these. The Russians made a deal with the Italians supplying them with quality steel. Them shonky cold war ruskies really did well with that, as many other similar period Italian cars suffer a similar fate.

      Build quality is also variable in these things. But by the looks of things, you're going over the old girl with a fine toothed comb, and you'll sort things out no doubt!

      oh and don't forget:



      • #4
        My dad was gunna get an x19 but when he took it for a drive he said the pedals were too close together for him to drive it properly... And he doesn't have a big hoof...

        Look nice though...
        My YouTube ~ My Ralliart Colt ~ Midnight Run


        • #5
          Hey guys, thanks for the feed back.

          Regarding the dash I actually plan to have the whole interior redone in a faux leather when I get there, I just need to decide on whether I'm going to change the paint colour first so I can pick a matching interior colour.

          Sadly I haven't got my parts yet today, but I'm hopeful.

          EDIT: I take that back, they arrived minutes ago
          Last edited by popsprocket; 12-03-2010, 02:32 PM.


          • #6
            Funky little car. I reckon you'll turn a few heads once she's up and running


            • #7
              I reckon it looks great. I think once it's all done you're going to have a very unique ride. Please keep us posted with your updates!
              MCM MAGAZINE ISSUE 5 OUT NOW. Have you got a copy yet? Mighty Car Mods Magazine


              • #8
                Well, it's been ages since I posted but that's not to say I haven't done at least a little work on the car. Uni got in the way and a whole bunch of life happened so the work I got done is minimal, but there's also more work than I took pictures for so I'll just show you the good stuff

                I spent at least 2 weeks trying to track down a panel beater - mobile or otherwise - who would be willing to do the rust work on my car. Unfortunately for me all the panel beaters here seem to have an unwritten rule about not touching Fiats with a ten-foot pole; so that's left me and dad with doing the welding ourselves (which should get underway this weekend much to my relief). We'd probably take longer and call more places if the welding wasn't key to the whole operation as doing it in any other order would be counter productive due to the large amount of disassembly required to get at some rusty spots.

                Here is the worst of it - windscreen rust in the bottom passenger corner. Now technically because there's no structural roof on the car this ISN'T structural but a road worthy shop would still fail it because they're not nice people and I'm young. Don't be too freaked out, the big hole is about the size of your thumb print, the picture is just well focused.

                Rear passenger wheel arch. This stuff is not worrying as there's no structure there so we're going to use spots like this to practice our panel beating

                The passenger side sill needs a fair bit of work:

                Up the front (un-dug out, this photo is old the rust is actually worse than it looks)

                Up the back (this is dug out fully, should be easy enough to patch with some curved replacement patches:

                And then in the rear boot is the other bit of practice rust, just need to cut the panel out and put in a new flat bit with actual drainage capabilities - this bit is actually covered by a layer of heat shield and then another metal plate that makes up the surface of the storage area.

                The only other rust is the bad stuff in the drivers side floor, but once again it's in a simple place to cut out and repair so it'll get used for more practice.

                Other than the rust I've been going steady on the engine, got within coo-ey of starting it the other weekend but the sun light beat me to the horizon. But that's okay I'm not too keen to start it on axle stands and have it rock itself loose, but that IS why we rigged up a starter kill switch in the engine bay. I've also had a quick look at the speaker system. The 4x6" in the parcel shelf will get replaced and I'll add in some 4" splits somewhere up the front of the cabin, but it's a monumental job as I'll have to run all new cabling to match the new plugs on the head unit I have for it.

                Also I forgot because I didn't have these uploaded on photobucket, but I gave the engine a clean prior to it's timing belt change. Solvent and a spray gun work wonders, little work for good results. One day I'll take the whole car apart and strip the body and rebuild the engine, but for now it gets the quick version until it's back on it's wheels at least and I get to drive the damn thing.



                Last edited by popsprocket; 28-07-2010, 09:26 PM.


                • #9
                  Looking really good dude, i have never seen one before or actually heard of one, but i really like it!

                  LOL yeah something about old cars is lovely, i have basically gone through all the steps with my car that you have, and have fixed a heap of problems that has taken me many many many weekends ahaha. All i can say for old cars is - they take all your money and your time, but leave you with a huge smile
                  -'76 Golf MK1


                  • #10
                    I remember when you first posted this car. Good to see your still working on it. Was keen to see how it was turning out just for the simple fact its a car you never see. As for the rust its not that bad!! i like to think of rust as a sign of a well travelled and loved car


                    • #11
                      my next door neighbour has a red one of these ill get a pic of it sometime and as far as i know its her daily driver lol
                      Another Quality post from Hayden
                      Have my P's, now what do I count down to?
                      Originally posted by ADowbs
                      In Volvo, we do trust.
                      My Boat:


                      • #12
                        Very cool car but sadly (like almost all Italian cars from that time period) built out of cheap commie steel.
                        There is a "replacement for displacement". It's called "forced induction"!


                        • #13
                          Very bloody unique! Can't wait to see it worked on.
                          If at first you don't succeed, add duct take.


                          • #14
                            Picking up our welder and some sheet metal today if we can find any suitable shops. I have a mate in a sheet metal shop but they don't cut their sheets and the small ones are too big for what we need and too big for us to deal with, so I have to forgo mates rates sadly.

                            God damnit, they sold out of the welder we had in our quote and won't get any until late next week, so that's damn annoying.

                            Picked up some metal offcuts from my mate after all they just happened to have a bunch of perfect size after a sheet they'd cut up earlier. Going to go and work on getting it started now I guess, might cut some metal out and bend some sheets up if we get there but to be honest I'd rather hear it start.
                            Last edited by popsprocket; 31-07-2010, 02:56 PM.


                            • #15
                              Exciting stuff, got the motor into life today.

                              With surprisingly little coaxing too, needed a bit of a hand to get the fuel flowing at first but as soon as we managed to make sure it was making it to the carby it started first go without a cough or splutter even. Video is here:

                              Working pose:

                              Last edited by popsprocket; 01-08-2010, 06:53 PM.