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Colombo & Bariani cams - total disaster - avoid!

Posted: June 5th, 2018, 7:29 pm
by Guy Croft
Recent catastrophic failure of C&B cams on a GC built 8V Integrale.

1. Cams bought from them for a Lancia 8v Integrale started to wear out within 10 minutes, metal debris all over the engine..
2. Tested for hardness by Rockwell method by my respected neighbours A Green Engineering Ltd by an ex-aerospace inspector - not heat-treated at all. Returned to C&B at MY cost! Results invalid according to owner of C&B - Vickers hardness testing method must only be used! Vickers testing done at cost to me! Results sent to C&B!
3. Total 7 months of trying to get C&B owner Alessandro Bariani to admit liability and pay for the entire engine rebuild
4. Grudging 'insurance payout' from C&B eventually that would not cover even 1/2 the cost of a total engine rebuild, removal from the car, re-installation, 3 days or more of the time of an expert consultant recommended by me - Nikola Radenkovich (founder of RP Labs) on site in Lancashire - having flown-in specially for the job, far less my time messing about doing emails to sort this mess out... Mr Bariani complained about how many emails he had to deal with to get the insurance payout. He even went so far as to say by email (I have all the records) that if we took C&B to court it would take YEARS to achieve a settlement. Not really what I want to hear from Italy's most 'respected' and oldest camshaft manufacturer - is it?
I myself would have covered the costs from my firm IMMEDIATELY. Fortunately - legally - I did not buy the cams, Tom Frame did. I am saddened that I recommended C&B but I trusted them. I no longer do nor ever will again
5. Replacement cams supplied by C&B as soft as raw En24T, colored like they were heat treated. They were not, They were about 32 HRc. Nowhere near the Rockwell or Vickers hardness specified to me by email by Mr Bariani. I had the replacement set tested by THREE agencies including most latterly Piper Cams in Kent UK. Tested personally by Technical Director and friend John Crabb who's words I have quoted.

For the record I carried out Vickers testing (in addition to Rockwell) although I knew that the test results could be easily correlated - and that is fact.

CAMS UNFIT FOR PURPOSE - TWICE. NO QUALITY PROTOCOLS IN PLACE FOR THIS FORMERLY RESPECTED COMPANY. Once is forgivable but twice is carelessness. Or worse - neglect.

My intuition - though I cannot prove this since Mr Bariani dodged the question from me - is that he is now having some items (if not all) made in China and has no quality control measures in place for those parts.

I warned Mr Bariani that I would make this post - since he doesn't take GCRE or me or my clients seriously or consider us to be of any importance.

As I said, my advice is don't buy from C&B. Very sad.

I shall NEVER trust them again AND I strongly advise you don't either. All I will say is BUYER-BEWARE.


Re: Colombo & Bariani - camshafts since 1934 - catastrophic failure in Guy Croft engine

Posted: June 11th, 2018, 5:23 pm
by Guy Croft
Tom Frames' engine - crankcase this week after complete strip/prep and re-assembly. I had to completely strip the entire fcuking engine.

Next op put the overhauled cylinder head together with a TRUSTWORTHY inlet cam of my own profile by Kent Cams and an OE 8v Integrale ex cam with the cam sensor drive slot in the right place...

I mean, I cannot simply 'bang' the engine together with metal debris everywhere.

I have stripped every part of this engine and inspected and cleaned every single piece. Only if you have done this can you possibly imagine how long that takes for an 8V Integrale and how much space it takes up....

Damn Colombo and Bariani for wasting MY TIME and my client's hard-earned money on this inappropriate-up and trying to kid me that their products were fit for use...

Given that Colombo and Bariani cannot supply 8V Integrale cams to me anymore that I can trust I think I will start making steel billet cams again as I did in the 90s

I hope that respected members of this site will forgive my extreme anger over this.... it may seem to fly in face of my website protocols but I make an exception in this case as the man who pays to run this respected forum...


Re: Colombo & Bariani - camshafts since 1934 - catastrophic failure in Guy Croft engine

Posted: June 12th, 2018, 6:06 pm
by 4v6
Given the circumstances Guy, I cannot see anyone having cause to criticise your good self over a small breach of your own protocols, its totally understandable.
Hope it all works itself out for you, best wishes, Tony.

Re: Colombo & Bariani - camshafts since 1934 - catastrophic failure in Guy Croft engine

Posted: June 12th, 2018, 7:07 pm
by Guy Croft
very many thanks dear Tony..


Re: Colombo & Bariani - camshafts since 1934 - catastrophic failure in Guy Croft engine

Posted: June 19th, 2018, 6:37 pm
by Guy Croft
Tom's cylinder in build today with an OE spec Int 8v ex cam and GC 2B inlet cam..

I could really do without this, at any price, I have much more important things to do.

C&B - thanks (not) for this imposition....

GC engines are built BY ME to last 20 years or more, not ten minutes...


Re: Colombo & Bariani - camshafts since 1934 - catastrophic failure in Guy Croft engine

Posted: June 21st, 2018, 6:32 pm
by 4v6
GC engines are built BY ME to last 20 years or more, not ten minutes...
Thats the difference between someone who really knows his stuff and someone who er, doesn't!
I love your attention to detail Guy, its something I strive to emulate.
Keep up the excellent work sir.

Re: Colombo & Bariani - camshafts since 1934 - catastrophic failure in Guy Croft engine

Posted: June 21st, 2018, 11:14 pm
by Guy Croft
Most kind of you especially to write dear Tony, I thank you.

The general response to this post (an important post if one values high standards) has been - er, nothing.

Colombo & Bariani cams trashed a very expensive GC engine in 10 minutes, they then supplied a 'replacement' pair of cams of the same useless quality as the first pair....In actuality the 2nd cams by C&B were as soft as raw En 24T, not hardened at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I did not trust the replacement pair and so had them tested by my respected neighbours, A Green Eng (Lincoln) Ltd (a long-established and respected company and First Tier supplier to Siemens Gas Turbines - among others) by Rockwell method, then by one of their preferred ISO/BSI -accredited heat-treatment suppliers by Vickers method, then by Piper Cams Technical Director, John Crabb - an industry expert in cam and engine design who works in the most important fields of valvetrain design in the world, from F1 down and close friend of GCRE.

I think one failure is forgivable, twice is utter carelessness (or blind greed or stupidity).

None of those results had the slightest impact on the pathetic, greedy owner of C&B, Bariani, a man who hides behind a reputation that no longer exists in fact. The engine rebuild cost ME a fortune, Tom too - a tiny fraction of the costs were covered by Bariani's insurance company. Not by the famous Bariani - by his insurance company..!!

Can you imagine if I ran GCRE like that?

Here today is Tom finally collecting his GC engine after waiting patiently for financial restitution for near 6 months from that useless cam manufacturer. What did C&B? About 1/3 of the true cost. And that was done with the grudging comment that if we did not accept his 'offer' he would string us out in court for years (or words to that effect_ ergo - accept the offer or get nothing)

Rebuilt from top-to-toe as fast as I could do it and fitted with a GC 2B inlet cam (made by Kent Cams and well-proven in style and material) and an OE 8V Integrale ex cam. I chose to use that combo because the cam map installed already (with the useless C&B cams) would marry quite well with that pair. The sad reality is the ex cam carries a slot to drive the cam injection phase sensor and at this time I can offer no other option.

Well done Tom Frame and Nikola Radenkovich (genius founder of RP Labs) for all they have done in helping GCRE to sort out the absolute mess caused by Colombo & Bariani camshafts. We are all 'out of pocket' over this.

When you buy raceparts, provenance is EVERYTHING.

Guy Croft BSc
Guy Croft Racing Engines

Re: FAILED Colombo & Bariani cams - total disaster - avoid!

Posted: July 9th, 2018, 5:50 pm
by Guy Croft
Tom's engine installed in his immaculately restored 8V Integrale..

No thanks at all to COLOMBO & BARIANI - who I will NEVER use NOR recommend ever again!

Engine was rebuilt by me with a GC inlet cam and standard good-used 8V Integrale ex cam, for want of anything better.

So far so good, well done Tom and well done Nikola Radenkovich - founder of the noted RP Labs - for continuing to help Tom with the calibration of the ecu on this very rare car..

Everything re engine has been done TWICE - no thanks to the idiots who run C&B - of whom the greatest must be the owner himself, trading on his reputation but not really giving a flying f*ck

Tom wrote me today..

"The past two weeks have been tiring but I made it to my cousins wedding with the car and he was over the moon. Almost 800km driving on the engine now and all is well just a few small issues to sort out. .. I cannot thank you enough Guy for all your help and my cousin Sam also sends his thanks. Thank you Andy Wright for your help with the Lambda and inspiration from your Evo I mods. I will nominate Nikola for a knighthood for services to Lancia captives, his work continues...! I have found doing this project was nothing like I expected. It has been the MOST difficult undertaking of my life and I could not have done it without all your help..."

Which just goes to show how careful I - GC - have to be with my work - and how everything can 'fall-down' if something doesn't perform - like a pair of camshafts from C&B


Re: FAILED Colombo & Bariani cams - total disaster - avoid!

Posted: July 9th, 2018, 9:28 pm
by Spider 1969
Wow, that looks the business! Very well done by all of you. Enjoy.

Kind regards,

Re: Colombo & Bariani cams - total disaster - avoid!

Posted: August 15th, 2018, 11:07 am
by Will01
What a beast, love it and glad it is all sorted and going in the right direction. Despite the bad things that have happened that car looks awesome with the proper choice of powerplant