Lotus Elan

Elan Quick Release Steering Wheel

PostPost by: type26owner » Mon Oct 04, 2004 3:24 pm

Anybody replace the 15" diameter wooden steering wheel with a modern day quick release wheel of the same size? What brand of wheel and release mechanism did you buy and where? Are there any pitfalls to avoid while doing the installation? How big in diameter is the grip area of the steering wheel? I need this for thief prevention plus my original steering wheel is starting to rack slightly on the track.
Thanks,
-Keith
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PostPost by: Towriss » Tue Oct 05, 2004 3:52 pm

I have one on my Elise and i can't see why it would not fit an Elan. I bought the hub assembly from Eliseparts.co.uk and fitted Sparco wheel.
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PostPost by: pereirac » Fri Mar 11, 2005 10:14 pm

Mountney do quick release hubs, a bit pricey at around ?80. You could email them at [email protected] and see if they do one for an Elan/Spitfire/Herald.

There is also these guys at <a href='http://www.rallydesign.co.uk/catalog/index.php?cPath=900_906' target='_blank'>http://www.rallydesign.co.uk/catalog/index...p?cPath=900_906</a>
although I don't know anything about them.

Carl
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87 Excel SE
97 Alpina B10

http://www.lotuselan.co.uk
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PostPost by: type26owner » Mon Mar 14, 2005 3:41 am

Only problem I can see is the sticker shock. Good ones cost a small fortune. Hope I can keep my mouth shut when I go for it and lie convincingly when my wife interrogates me on how much it cost. She can see through me like I'm completely transparent. :blink:
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Sat Apr 23, 2005 3:07 am

OK, I'll bite. No, but I did put a very late model Spitfire wheel on my S1 for a while and loved it. Still had to loosen the nut and take it off to change to my original 15" wooden wheel. Pitfalls? Grip area in diameter dimensions? Do you mean how big around is it? What thief is stealing what? Rack on the track? I'm lost...
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PostPost by: type26owner » Sat Apr 23, 2005 3:56 pm

To rack means it's come loose. As I turn the steering wheel back and forth there is a small amount of angular play when changing directions. Okay for driving on the public roads. Definitely degrades the tactile feedback when at speed on the track. Kickback through the steering system to the steering wheel is dampened by the racking so I can't feel what the car is doing as well as I should be able to do. This is not a serious safety issue just one of driver preference.
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PostPost by: storrar54 » Mon Apr 25, 2005 10:42 am

Any play in steering column splines/steering wheel is a straight MOT failure in UK!
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Sat Apr 30, 2005 2:36 am

...driving a race car with a loose steering wheel?
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PostPost by: type26owner » Sat Apr 30, 2005 3:10 pm

...driving a race car with a loose steering wheel?

Actually a little clocking play is quite common on a racecar with a quick-release steering wheel. The ones which have no play are extremely expensive.
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PostPost by: type26owner » Tue May 03, 2005 2:11 pm

I've called around inquiring about a quick release hub to fit the Triumph Spitfire steering column and have come up with nothing. Looks like I'll have to weld on the flange to the steering shaft cause there aren't any direct bolt-on ones to buy. My question is the original steering shaft hardened steel? The reason I ask is the column has the safety collapsing feature were a clamp bears against a flat on the steering shaft and it's designed to slide if enough force is applied. What diameter is that shaft exactly in the area of the clamp? I don't want to butcher my original stuff so I'll make a new one. TIA!
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PostPost by: jkolb » Tue May 03, 2005 2:27 pm

Check IO products in the US. <a href='http://www.ioportracing.com' target='_blank'>http://www.ioportracing.com</a>. They have several solutions and adaptors.

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PostPost by: type26owner » Sat May 07, 2005 1:45 pm

Persistance has paid off afterall. Finally found the design of quick release hub mechanism that makes sense. Recognized it instantly because it's the way I would have approached this design concept a second time around. I've got the benefit of hindsight here because I built a loose piece of crap one for our racecar years ago. Just hoping the as-built quality is as good as the design concept. TEKNIQ lists the adapter hub for the Triumph Spitfire steering column but they have never sold one before. Was informed I'm the first one to go for the Street version on an early Elan. Appears their collapsible adapter would move the steering wheel towards me by another few inches from the looks of them. I'll probably build my own replacement steering shaft and mating flange so the steering wheel position stays where it is now. Even though I'm strapped into a four-point harness having the wheel just a few inches closer to my chest makes me nervous safety-wise.
<a href='http://www.tekniqauto.com/US/snapoff/SOFaq.htm' target='_blank'>http://www.tekniqauto.com/US/snapoff/SOFaq.htm</a>
<a href='http://www.tekniqauto.com/US/home.htm' target='_blank'>http://www.tekniqauto.com/US/home.htm</a> Check on 'Snap-Off System at bottom.
The 41 is going to get a Snap-Off Racing version upgrade. Maybe they would make me a custom one to fit the bolt pattern of the original steering wheel. I'll ask next week.

Looks like the tough part of this is finding a 380mm steering wheel I like. Need the leverage with 7 degrees of caster and no caster adjustment to keep the car from veering off the road due to the crown. Wished you made that adjustable Chunky!

p.s. Kinda of a lame name for a steering wheel device don't you think? :huh:
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PostPost by: type26owner » Mon May 09, 2005 8:00 pm

Okay, Tekniq is having the adapter hub made for me which will bolt directly onto the Elan's steering column. Supposely the hub is short enough so with a steering wheel which is not dished, the stacked assembly will end up at the same distance from me as the original wheel. The hub is $54. Gee, I'm going to have a functioning center horn button too. This is to easy.
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PostPost by: type26owner » Sat May 14, 2005 2:02 pm

Had to settle for a MOMO steering wheel which is only 13.5" (342mm) in diameter. They list it as being actually 350mm but it shrunk somewhat. :( Figured finding a 15" (380mm) diameter wheel would be the easy part but I was sadly mistaken. The only ones I could find were wooden ones. Better safe than sorry.

Last item is a fuel cell. My wife is going to kill me.... :blink:
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PostPost by: type26owner » Thu Jun 02, 2005 1:02 am

Received the Tekniq quick release steering wheel hub today. Build quality and function (no play) looks to be superb. If I get up early enough tomorrow maybe I can install it before leaving for Reno and the WCLM trackday. :D
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