Lotus Elan

Adjustable top wishbones

PostPost by: stevebroad » Sun Jun 03, 2012 3:57 pm

I have a set of adjustable top wishbones that I was planning to fit to my project car. However, you can only adjust them by removing them first, which will be a pain.

Therefore I have designed a set that can be adjusted insitu for camber and also allow for caster angle adjustment (albeit at the moment by removing them, but I am working on that!). However before I press the start button on fabrication, I want to make sure that I am not reinventing the wheel. I haven't been able to find wishbones that are adjustable insitu, but does anyone know different?
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PostPost by: gav » Sun Jun 03, 2012 8:09 pm

Hi Steve

I haven't seen anything like that which you describe but would love to see a sketch of your thinking if that is possible.

Thanks
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Sun Jun 03, 2012 10:01 pm

Hi Gavin

As I don't have a Patient on my design, I'd rather not discuss it until I have made, fitted and proved the concept so I can offer them to other nutters, I mean enthusiasts :-) However, they are nothing revolutionary, just using established racing suspension techniques and a decent aluminium alloy. They have gone through a few iterations after discussions with chassis and race car builders.

If successful, the deisgn will be easily adapted for Plus 2s, Europas, etc. I am using my project as the test bed and am working on the caster adjusting issue at the moment.

Regards

Steve
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PostPost by: vstibbard » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:04 am

Hi there, does your idea look something like this? to simplify on car adjustment especially for the rear wishbone we've made new wishbones with barrel nuts and rose joint or bushed threaded end, leaving the adjustment via the barrel nut? Picture of set is on race car before alignment etc. Before anyone comments, the steering tracks rod ends are temporary, we've since made adjustable height pins for the steering arms.

I'm making a set for road car with bushes next.
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P1000439.JPG (59.43 KiB) Viewed 2314 times

Cheers

Vaughan
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Mon Jun 04, 2012 10:23 am

Hi Vaughan

The front adjustable wishbone looks like it still needs to be removed for adjustment, or am I missing something? I take it that they are steel? They are the best looking wishbones I have seen, very nicely finished.

Looking at the rear wishbone adjuster I'm guessing that the rod end is screwed into the larger threaded bar via a left hand thread? If so, I like it. However, we decided that, as the rod end will rotate within the space between the brackets, a standard setup will work for us. Mind you, if I had seen this photo earlier.....:-)
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PostPost by: vstibbard » Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:35 pm

Hi Steve, Yes, due to large rose joint required due to wishbone pin diameter, we decide weight outweighed the benefit so front as per original with lock nut, rear only using barrel nuts. When close to finished we will reduce length of barrel nuts and cap to stop grit getting to threads etc.

The road car set with bushes will however have barrel nuts front and rear as we have control over thread diameter, using same as rear as made spares on CNC with original set.

We had also thought of making the barrel nuts in high grade aluminium hard coated to reduce weight.. but if ever the rose join was supported only in the barrel nut then...

We've made jigs for rear and patterns for front, but still lots of work in making a set, and finished in electrolysis nickel, so not for everyone. I've waited 30 years to finally get my 26R and want to keep it for 30 more, so going the extra distance up front!!! Suspect it would not be acceptable if i get it over to Europe for a season, but then the Pau and Classic Le Mans organisers seem keen to allow it if I get over there.

Keep me posted as you progress.

Cheers

V
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Mon Jun 04, 2012 1:12 pm

Not quite clear on what you mean by barrel nuts. I googled it and came up with these:

http://www.haivon.com/partshow2.asp?id=38

Which I am sure isn't what you are using :-)

I am using high grade aluminium with steel threaded inserts for adjustment. Using rod ends allows for caster adjustment due to the extra space available when compared to bushes.

My car is nowhere near standard so I am not worried about acceptance :-)

I will post images when made.
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Fri Jun 08, 2012 2:36 pm

Final design now with fabricator so should be ready for a test fitting in a couple of weeks. If you are prepared to re-thread your chassis mounting studs then in-situ caster adjustment is available as well as camber :-)
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:21 am

Had a slight setback with wishbones. Fabricator wanted nearly ?900! Way too much for my budget. However, I then spoke to a friend who owns a machining company (should have gone to him first I guess). He uses a local CNC company and they came up with a price I can manage. When made I will post images and take orders :-)
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:13 pm

Wishbones now made and I am quite happy with them. When I picked them up they were as designed but looked rather chunky in the flesh. 6 hours later on my mill and they are 88gms lighter (300gms each) and looking a lot better, IMO, they just need a little polishing. The next batch will be totally CNC'd.

The theads on the chassis wishbone studs have now been extended, allowing insitu caster adjustment as well as camber.

Image

Image

Image

Image
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PostPost by: msd1107 » Sat Oct 06, 2012 5:51 pm

So, how do we get them?

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PostPost by: mini64 » Sun Oct 07, 2012 11:45 am

this type of in-situ adjustment method is commom on race cars, should be detailed in one of Smith's books, but nice looking work here!
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Mon Oct 08, 2012 2:19 pm

msd1107 wrote:So, how do we get them?

David
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Wishbones now available

Material is 6082T6 aluminium with a certificate of conformity. The finish will be far better than shown in photos as all machining will be done using CNC.
Nuts are 1/2" UNF with a zinc and pasivate clear protective treatment. If you prefer to use a metric rod end this can be accommodated.
I am using these on my road legal Elan but am selling them for race use only.
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Image
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Retail ?135 each including nuts but plus shipping. Any import charges and taxes are the responsibility of the buyer.
Wishbones can be clear anodised for an additional ?20 each although this is not really necessary for race use as there isn't much salt used on the track :-)
Discounts available for multiple sets.

I am not supplying the rod ends (rose joints) as there are many levels of quality (and price) readily available so I will leave that choice up to you :-)

If you don't plan to modify your mounting studs to allow for caster adjustment then a spacer will be required between the rod end and the unthreaded section of the stud. I can't supply these as the thickness will vary due to chassis manufacturing tolerances. These don't show up when using rubber bushes but they do when using rod ends as there is no play in them. (as an aside, using different thickness spacers will allow a small amount of caster adjustment, allowing some fine tuning but at the expense of having to remove wishbones for each adjustment).

Although these are specifically designed for the Elan, wishbones to fit the Plus 2 are also available at ?145 each. Wishbones for other cars using a similar set up can also be supplied based on the customer's specification and requirements. Please enquire re availability and pricing.

On receipt of 50% deposit manufacture takes around 3 weeks. On receipt of balance wishbones will be shipped via FedEx fully insured.

You will need longer bolts to attach wishbones to the top ball joint. I use M8 as opposed to the Standard 3/8" as they are a little bigger and fit the ball joint holes a little better. If you wish to stay with 3/8" I can adjust the wishbone bolt holes to suit at no extra charge.

If anyone is interested or requires more information, you can contact me either by PM on here or direct at [email protected]

Regards

Steve Broad
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PostPost by: vstibbard » Sat Oct 13, 2012 8:39 am

Look good Steve, question re castervadjustment, as now allowance in the trunnion for caster if you adjust to much caster in at top it will load the trunnion joint and bind on the weakest part of upright i expect.

. If you go this route you really needto use the caterham lower joints.

V
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PostPost by: stevebroad » Sat Oct 13, 2012 1:02 pm

Yes, that would be a problem unless you fit these, as I have :-)

Image

Available from Canley Classics at http://www.canleyclassics.com/?xhtml=xh ... roduct.xsl
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