So, Fiat update... The infernal Italian has given me one hell of a time, this weekend... It started when the rear calipers did not want to come apart for the rebuild they desperately needed. I ended up getting one rebuilt, the other slapped back on the car, brakes bled, handbrake cables ziptied to the chassis and called it a day. Then, I ordered new ones from RockAuto.
So, I go and drive it, to make sure it still stops (which it does, better than before.), and drove to see a lovely female friend of mine. Now, I know my car has to be Italian, because why else would the shift lever come off in my hand, three blocks from her house? So, I drove the car to her place in 3rd gear, parked in front and ended up spending a lovely night with a very lovely lady.
Morning comes, throw the car back together enough to go see a friend who does weird and unusual stuff, and we discover that, in traditional Classic Fiat tradition, a previous owner had tried to secure the shift lever with the wrong size nut and rounded off the head. Anyway, got that fixed, with some thread locker and the proper nut, called it a day.
On the positive front: The weather was beautiful, so the top has been down since Friday. The car hasn't missed a beat (other than the shifter) in ~350 miles of driving this weekend, plus the 400 last weekend, AND driving it to work all week. Also, she's running on clean 15w40 Delo 400 now, and the only leak now is a minor coolant leak from around the thermostat tee, so I've got to slap a new thermostat and gasket on it.
Next two weekends: Brake calipers, differential fluid and transmission fluid, one week from Saturday. Timing belt/water pump/thermostat, two weeks from Saturday. That'll give me 4 weeks before "Fiats on the Dragon" to work out any remaining mechanical bugs.
SR20 - on the Natchez Trace Parkway.