Lotus Elan

Diff Restoration

PostPost by: richard sprint » Sun Apr 26, 2009 11:12 am

The diff is working ok but would like to restore the appearance so best to remove input and output shafts and while at it bearings and seals. Dont have equipment or experience to measure end float anyone recommend a UK company who could reassemble?

Richard
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PostPost by: 512BB » Sun Apr 26, 2009 11:40 am

Good morning Richard,

I am about to have 3 diffs rebuilt this coming week. I am going to use a company called A1 gearboxes in St Neots. They are close by me and come highly recomended by a guy who i buy my bearings from.

I shall also be taking a diff to them that was rebuilt by another firm, that is clearly not right. The planet wheels are all knotchy when you turn them with the driveshafts inserted, so be careful who you choose.

I shall let you know how i get on with this company. You may want to use them as you are not far from them either.

Regards

Leslie
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PostPost by: richard sprint » Sun Apr 26, 2009 3:54 pm

Hi Leslie

Thanks please keep me informed - I think I will go ahead and strip it down for painting they can then re assemble a clean unit. What sort of money do they charge?

I tried to find the paint shop you mentioned in Lincs but without luck - do you have any further info?

Thanks

Richard
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PostPost by: elansprint71 » Sun Apr 26, 2009 10:07 pm

richard sprint wrote:The diff is working ok but would like to restore the appearance


Who is going to be looking at it? :twisted:
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:30 am

Pete

Haven't you seen the amount or Roadkill in Lincs recently?.....


John :wink:
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PostPost by: 512BB » Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:07 am

Richard,

The company i recommended for painting was SMS, Nr Spalding 01406 371504. If you call them, talk to a guy called Paul. They painted one of my Elans years ago in black. Still looks as good today as when it left them. I have been threatening to let them have another car to paint for a couple of years now, but havent found the time to strip it down. Please give Paul my regards.

However Richard, allow plenty of time if you want SMS to paint your car, as it will be months, not weeks, before you get it back. People ship cars to them from Europe for them to paint, such is their reputation.

Oh, and dont worry if there are carrots coming out of any of the lads ears should you get to meet them, thats what they are like up in Lincs! :lol:

All the best

Leslie
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PostPost by: richard sprint » Tue Apr 28, 2009 9:15 pm

Leslie

I spoke with SMS today.

They are booked up until August/Sept. price is much on par with prices received from 3 other specialists. I will have to make a visit to take a look.

Many thanks

Richard
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PostPost by: richard sprint » Thu Apr 30, 2009 8:42 pm

I'm trying to remove the drive shafts from the diff, in the manual its states to remove the circlips then gently tap out the driveshafts, tried to accomplish this but they are not budging....

I also tried to use a puller on them so as to avoid uneven pressure but no go - any tips on how to acheive this?
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PostPost by: paddy » Thu Apr 30, 2009 10:09 pm

I assume the circlips are out and the part of the bore you can see is completely cleaned of rubbish/corrosion.

The bearings and shafts should really come out quite easily. Since it's alloy in contact with the steel bearing you can get electrolytic corrosion of the bore which solidifies around the bearing. Perhaps soak it in WD40 and leave it overnight and try again. Alternatively, the bearing might have been set in loctite when last replaced - I'm not sure what the remedy for this is other than a bit more force (without going over the top) - do you have a slide hammer? If it starts to move and reaches the outer edge of the circlip groove be really careful not to get it snagged on any burrs because it seems that that part of the casting is really quite fragile.

I'm not sure whether or not using heat is a good idea.

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PostPost by: richard sprint » Fri May 01, 2009 8:19 am

Thanks paddy - I have seen evidence of loctite on the diff bolts so you could be right, I will soak it over the weekend and keep trying - slide hammer a good idea will configure a method of attaching centrally to the driveshaft.
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PostPost by: richard sprint » Fri May 01, 2009 8:31 am

elansprint71 wrote:
richard sprint wrote:The diff is working ok but would like to restore the appearance


Who is going to be looking at it? :twisted:


Peter - you forgot to mention who's going to touch it! probably myself and quite regularly when changing the rotoflexes....love cars but hate dirty hands....
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PostPost by: gerrym » Fri May 01, 2009 11:55 am

Re removing the diff output shafts, if Loctite has been used it's almost essential that some heat is used. This will "destroy" the Loctite bond, the diff shafts should then come out without excessive force being used. I would not used a puller. A slide hammer can be made from a surplus intermediate drive shaft.

Regards

Gerry
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PostPost by: ill_will » Fri May 01, 2009 4:07 pm

further to what Gerry said, blowtorch the loctite. A slide hammer can work but make sure it is applying impulses to the centre of the 3-armed spider, not a single arm. As Gerry says, you can bolt an old driveshaft on and attach the slide hammer to the (splined) end, or make up a thick plate with three holes to bolt it onto the driveshaft, and a central hole to attach the slide hammer.

I actually used a puller, which worked well, by making a three legged 'bridge' which rested against the flat aluminium face the bearing is seated in. (I don't like hitting stuff unless absolutely necessary.) It's basically a flat plate with three legs at right angles. The central part of the puller then bears on the bridge; the legs are in compression; the plate in bending (it needs to be quite thick, maybe 3/4" to avoid bending it. I applied a bit of tension using a three-legged puller, then applied more heat; the bearing popped right out, no worries. And this was on a seriously seriously corroded car; I honestly can't imagine much worse unless it had been abandoned in the sea!

One of the shafts previously in the diff had clearly exploded, as there were bits of spline inside the casing. The driveshafts didn't match; one earlier, one later. The later one was good, but the earlier one had some plastic deformation at points on the spline, and some minor cracks. They were replaced with TTR 4-eye solid ones.

Hope this helps; sorry I don't have a photo of it in action. If you get stuck i'll send you a sketch.

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PostPost by: richard sprint » Sat May 02, 2009 12:05 am

Success this evening, I created a bridge and used a three legged puller, applied tension then heated the area - very quickly came a ping as they released - job done.

I expected to find some locking tabs on the 4 bolts that secure the bearing caps - should they be there?

The diff has been apart at sometime as evidenced by the red hermatite between the casings and wonder if they were left out?

Thanks everyone for your tips and advice...

Richard
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