Lotus Elan

Wanted: Sprint Failsafe Driveshaft UK

PostPost by: trw99 » Tue Mar 19, 2024 3:09 pm

The nearside driveshaft on my Sprint has died; see photograph.

Since so many folk on here extoll the virtues of fixed driveshafts, I rather imagine that there must be a fairly large number of now redundant driveshafts knocking around in garages up and down the country!

So my request is for a UK-based, Sprint specification, outer driveshaft with the failsafe extension. Please. Anyone. Naturally I shall pay for the item and postage.

A further plea. My car is as original as it can be, original chassis and factory paint. I am keeping it that way. I do not wish to have fixed driveshafts, so please no attempts to change my mind; I shall not. I have some NOS doughnuts (actually around 30 years old, kept in the dark and, I hope, made from the old rubber recipe), which will be fitted when the driveshaft is changed.

Thank you. Tim
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Broken Driveshaft 1.jpg and
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PostPost by: Andy8421 » Tue Mar 19, 2024 4:18 pm

Tim,

There are a few pairs (one pair failsafe) on eBay at the moment. The failsafe pair are £45 which seems a good price.

Andy.

Edit: The failsafe pair were +2 I am afraid.
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PostPost by: pabbage » Tue Apr 09, 2024 4:01 pm

Hi Tim - I think I may have a pair stored at my Dad's garage. I replaced shocks, driveshafts etc a few years ago and stashed them. I'll ask him to get them out and take a photo.

Paul
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PostPost by: trw99 » Tue Apr 09, 2024 10:13 pm

Thank you very much, but I have sourced a driveshaft and it is now fitted.

In my research on this I have discovered what I believe to be an error in my previous thinking regarding the later Sprints being fitted with failsafe driveshafts. It seems that it was only the Plus 2S 130s that were fitted with failsafe driveshafts by the factory. Certainly my original driveshafts are not of the failsafe type (Oct 72 Sprint).

If anyone with later Sprints, from Jan/Feb 73 knows for sure that their Sprints came from the factory with failsafe shafts, I would be most interested to know.

Tim
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PostPost by: Gordon Sauer » Tue Apr 09, 2024 10:49 pm

My 73 +2S/130, 10 th from the end of last ones to US didn’t have them, had since’89 and low miles when I got it, Gordon
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PostPost by: 2cams70 » Tue Apr 09, 2024 10:50 pm

Note that the likely cause of the failure is incorrect torquing of the bolts. If there is not enough clamp load the bolt will shift in it’s hole and the stress from transmitting drive torque will be concentrated on one side of the bolt hole rather than being distributed around the entire circumference of the hole. Suggest you torque the bolts using a torque wrench next time.
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PostPost by: h20hamelan » Tue Apr 09, 2024 11:52 pm

.

shaft.jpeg and


you be careful out there
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PostPost by: trw99 » Wed Apr 10, 2024 9:41 am

[quote="Gordon Sauer"]My 73 +2S/130, 10th from the end of last ones to US didn’t have them, had since’89 and low miles when I got it, Gordon[/quote]

Gordon, your Plus 2S 130 came off the production line in Jul 72 and the final Federal spec Plus 2S 130 came off the production line the following month, Aug. This was before the failsafe driveshafts first became available.

On 10 Sep 72 a Service Bulletin was issued, titled 'To advise Dealer personnel of the new drive shafts now being fitted in current Production to 'S.130' cars.' This indicated that failsafe driveshafts would be fitted to all cars from Chassis Numbers 72090851 L UK & 72090237M EXPORT.

No mention made of them being fitted to Sprints, nor N Federal cars, which had finished production by then.

Tim
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Wed Apr 10, 2024 10:13 am

Hi Tim
The failure of the bolt ear on the driveshaft is unusual and I have never seen it. It must be due to a loose donut bolt but even then it is the bolt that normally fails. I notice that the nyloc nut is not properly engaged on the bolt so that may be the cause of it coming loose. The donut bolt assembly has clearly been played with over the last 50 years and maybe its a fatigue failure of the ear after running with loose bolts for a period and the bolt did not fail as it was replaced with a new ( and shorterone) at some time more recently. A close up photo of the failed surface would help identify the cause. The bolt also appears to have necked down due to stretching though hard to tell from the photo

My 73 Plus 2S 130/5 cam with the safety pins and sockets in the drive shafts but this did not work as the pin sheered off when a donute failed causing chassis damage. I understand why your want to keep your Elan absolutely original but just dont do any hard starts without close inspection and torque checking of the donuts and their bolting first :)

cheers
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Thu Apr 11, 2024 5:16 am

That must have been "clicking " alot.
I would think it had been weakened by a Doughnut failure in the past.
Alan
Ps. As Rohan said bolts too short no threads outside past Nyloc. Who fitted them
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PostPost by: 2cams70 » Thu Apr 11, 2024 5:28 am

Yes I did mention loose bolts just prior to H20 jumping in with some bizzare distraction.
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PostPost by: Donels » Thu Apr 11, 2024 6:34 pm

Just found this in Brian Bucklands book.

Dave

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