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NM - I figured it out. In the end, I pushed the needle up with one screwdriver then it was very easy to wedge the tab over with the wide flathead in the slot in the block. It took very little force to do it this way and the tension holds the pulley / needle in the right spot. On hindsight, it’s very easy this way.

Crappy picture

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I’ve been stuck on the tensioner step for 2 hours - I can’t figure it out. No matter what I do, the needle and the black back plate move together - meaning when I rotate the black plate the needle just stays with it, pointing at the tab. Even when looking at the old pulley off the car, I don’t understand why the needle would move independently (if that makes any sense) - what anchors it? Any help is appreciated.

Old pulley - when on the car, the needle stays just like this no matter how I push the black tab.
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Just completed this today - took me 3 4-8 hour days taking my time, cleaning all the parts, etc. I could do it in in one sitting next time. Only major snag was the tensioner which I posted on above.

The Alfa workshop instructions were excellent (thanks!). The only thing not covered was (1) I found it easier to remove the alternator all together - there’s two wires on the back, a 13mm deep socket and an 8mm are needed to disconnect (disconnect the battery first), and (2) when putting things back together, you should reset the 2 connecting points on the engine mount plate after you bolt it to the front cover - see Here
 

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Just finished mine today too (along with coolant change, brake bleed, mechanical fastener torque, oil change, etc...). One note, don't have it in gear and the parking brake on. Tough to turn the crankshaft :) One thing I didn't see mentioned anywhere is the removal of a side brace that is necessary to remove the motor mount. Mine is a spider, so perhaps it is different than the examples/service manual:

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Hello guys i am curiously following this thread. Do you know of a reputable shop to do this in the Boston area? thank you!
 

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This is an interference engine. Belt is five years per service manual, regardless of miles. It cannot be visually inspected. Once you get that far to visually inspect it, you should replace it. If you could visually inspect it, don't expect to see wear or fraying. It could fail, stretch or skip teeth as it ages and these modern rubbers tend to get destroyed by sitting in one position (a wide and prone position in a twin cam car) and also from ozone in the air. Miles are less of a problem. A 2015 has a belt sitting in there since 2014, made a cross Atlantic trip and sits in a car used infrequently, back there with all the pollutants one can offer.

1400 for parts and labor is showing itself to be very fair, with the most aggressive shops pricing under that. A shop will need the cam locking toolset from Mopar or Alfa/Italy, which ensures there is no way to screw it up.

I had my 2015 w/ 18,500 miles changed this year. filed under: Do what you need to do to sleep at night. A seven year old belt wasn't helping.
 

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to those who have finished theirs - did you replace the Cam sprocket bolts? They are one time use stretch type....curious how many of you just retightened the cam sprockets without replacing. @jamiealfa I left you a PM please check your inbox!
 

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I didn't replace the bolts on the camshaft variators when I did my timing belt. Used the factory manual and it didn't make any reference to replacing them (unless it's really buried somewhere) so don't think it's necessary. They do require quite a bit of torque (actually tightened to angle rather than torque) though so might not be bad practice to replace even if not required just for piece of mind.
 

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Hats off to you folks tackling the timing belt replacement yourselves. I need to find a honest shop. I remember previous discussion threads included some San Francisco Bay Area 4C-owners recommending a couple independent shops on the peninsula. I’m hoping those owners are out there reading this and can jump in on this and send shop suggestions, again. Bear with me as I’ll post this same message on more than one thread on this subject.
 

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Hats off to you folks tackling the timing belt replacement yourselves. I need to find a honest shop. I remember previous discussion threads included some San Francisco Bay Area 4C-owners recommending a couple independent shops on the peninsula. I’m hoping those owners are out there reading this and can jump in on this and send shop suggestions, again. Bear with me as I’ll post this same message on more than one thread on this subject.
Elite Performance in San Mateo has been mentioned in other discussions. I have not personally dealt with them, so I'm just passing along a second hand recommendation. Perhaps try searching with that shop name and you may find others. I'm in SF but planning to do it myself.
 

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Did the service myself and it’s not to intrusive. I made a thread about it and the total cost was under 400 dollars in components
 
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