Lotus Elan

Spyder chassis durability

PostPost by: fillpoke » Sun Oct 01, 2017 7:50 pm

Hi, could anyone advise me of the durability of Spyder spaceframe chassis? The +2s I'm interested in (but cannot get to see) had one of these chassis fitted 20 years ago. Is it likely to be ok still? Are there any known failure points? Thanks, Dave
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Sun Oct 01, 2017 8:56 pm

Never heard or seen any issues mentioned with Spyder chassis and their longevity. I saw one that had been in use 10 years and it still looked new. I guess it all depends on its use - salty or seaside conditions and left outside a lot as against one not used in the wet and stored in a dry garage might make all the difference!

If future value and/or originality might be important to you then consider an original Lotus chassis.
Steve

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PostPost by: Grizzly » Sun Oct 01, 2017 10:51 pm

One thing to watch out for on early Spyder chassis (third post down) lotus-chassis-f36/lotus-spyder-t21642-75.html

They changed the design on the later ones......
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Mon Oct 02, 2017 9:21 am

I have had a Spyder chassis in my Plus2 for almost 30 years with only one issue.

I did not shim the bolt location to the body alone the bottom of the chassis adequately in one location. As these are small welded on brackets on the Spyder chassis compared to using the sheet chassis flange on the Lotus design the bracket cracked as a result due to the bolt load.

The paint on the chassis is a good as new after 30 years but the Australian climate is much easier on the car under body than in the Northern hemisphere I think

cheers
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PostPost by: Foxie » Mon Oct 02, 2017 12:43 pm

I fitted my Plus 2S with a Spyder chassis in 1998, 19 years ago. I am very happy with it. I particularly like the enclosed front suspension towers, the removable wishbone pivot pins, the IRS option, and the removable engine mounts. I did a body lift 2 years ago to replace the lh rear diagonal tube with a flanged steel panel to fit a modified T9 gearbox. The chassis was in perfect condition. (The car is garaged, and we don't have salt ! :) )
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PostPost by: gus » Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:00 pm

I have seen only the one picture noted above of a Spyder failure.

My original chassis failed in 16 years
My Spyder has been in 23 years

I would not worry about it
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PostPost by: c.garde » Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:05 pm

it is 35 + years since I fitted my early Spyderframe . This was delivered with removable spindles to my insistence . I argued with Vic Moore that this must be a better solution as Lotus already had introduced this on the then current models.
The sprint was my only car for 20 years .
In all these years never a problem re. chassis . The hybrid driveshafts has been a success also.
One of the orig. donuts still in perfect nik. The other did not take kindly to my overhearing a clicking noise.
Paint wise I chose to do it myselft to the very helpful Hempel Marines advise :
A fresh sandblast , hot zink spray followed by 4 coats of gradually thicker epoxy primer ( starting with 50 % thinning down ) Final coat with polyurethane.
Good enough for a ship and not a single red spot . ( well to be honest, one tiny scraping from the
poor lifting.)

Claus Garde.



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PostPost by: John Larkin » Mon Oct 02, 2017 4:54 pm

I installed my Spyder chassis in 1980/1981. It's still trouble-free. However, this thread has prompted me to to consider a really good check on it this winter while the car is hibernating.

John Larkin
1967 S3SE FHC, 1974 Rover P6B, 1949 Lancia Aprilia
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PostPost by: fillpoke » Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:41 pm

Thanks everyone for your very helpful replies. I guess the Spyder chassis is one of the least of my worries when looking at these cars. Thanks again....Dave
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