Lotus Elan

Engine to Bonnet Clearance

PostPost by: RichardHawkins » Sat Mar 25, 2017 6:40 pm

Forgot to mention the important part, my car is an S4 FHC Webber head with Stromberg bonnet.

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PostPost by: William2 » Sat Mar 25, 2017 7:05 pm

Hi Richard, I had exactly the same problem when I restored my S4 car which also has a Webber head and the Stromberg bonnet. The cam cover was about 10mm too high and therefore hit the bonnet on the driver's side. I was advised by several people to avoid adding packing washers between the chassis rail and bodywork as it shouldn't be necessary and I didn't like the idea. I then decided to slightly elongate the chassis bolt holes on the rubber engine mounts as much as I dare. This still did not lower the engine enough. My eventual solution was as follows. I used identical (exhaust side) engine mounts so that the cam cover would be level and therefore lower on the drivers side. This resulted in a clearance under the airbox of about 1/8" which is not enough. I then cut a slot about 15mm wide and 120mm long on the footwell panel just underneath the airbox metal edge and added 3 layers of fibreglass matt. I made sure that the matt had about a 10mm dip in it so that there would be a good clearance between the airbox and the footwell.
Finished it off with a coat of brush on satin black paint. The cut out is barely visible and was all pretty straightforward to do. At the end of the day it was the only solution that I could come up with and I never did get to the bottom of why the cam cover was too high in the first place, particularly as my car has the original front end bodywork and a standard height block. Probably not a bad idea either to have the engine level.
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PostPost by: RichardHawkins » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:45 pm

William,

Thanks for the reply. I did not want to alter the body as it has been beautifully and expensively painted. I hoped there was some other explanation. Surely our cars can't have left the factory with a bonnet that won't close.

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PostPost by: Mazzini » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:40 am

William2 wrote: I was advised by several people to avoid adding packing washers between the chassis rail and bodywork as it shouldn't be necessary and I didn't like the idea.


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