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.
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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.
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
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: