Lotus Elan

Overhauling the back end

PostPost by: JonB » Sat Feb 03, 2018 6:34 pm

Finally, it's on with the S/S replacement back box (supplied by the PO, used but in good condition).

exhaust.jpg and


It has a larger diameter tail pipe but its entry pipe fits the long pipe perfectly. Joints fitted with exhaust paste and clamped with new S/S low profile clamps.

At this point I thought it would be nice to try the new exhaust and I'm happy to say it is quieter than the old one (which seems to be "straight through") and it doesn't leak, either. Quite why the PO didn't fit it will remain a mystery.

All that is left to do now is to torque up the various nuts - CV shafts (with someone standing on the brake), wishbone bush bolts (with the suspension compressed, will probably fit the wheels and put the rear of the car on ramps for that) and the nearside rear hub nut (which I can do with a wheel fitted as I have an old spinner without a cap).

I call that a good day's slog!
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Sat Feb 03, 2018 7:29 pm

Jon,
I found it quite satisfactory to clamp a Mole type wrench on the brake disc to prevent it turning while tightening the CV nuts. A bit of rag is needed between the wrench and what ever it touches.
Hope this helps.
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PostPost by: JonB » Sat Feb 03, 2018 8:34 pm

Now that is a jolly good idea.

Wondering if the joints can handle that much torque. Must be able to, or Kelveden wouldn't have told me to use the brakes to lock the shafts.

I also considered jamming the disks with a screwdriver against the hub carrier.
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PostPost by: JonB » Sun Feb 04, 2018 1:46 pm

Fortunately none of that was necessary as I managed to persuade my daughter out into the garage to stand on the brake pedal.

So, half an hour torquing the CV joint nuts up with an open ended spanner (only thing that would fit) followed by the N/S hub nut (to 110lbs/ft), then get the daughter into the back of the car, jack each hub up to normal operating position and torque up the wishbone bolts. All done.

Quick wash, which exposed more windscreen leaks, then off for a tentative test drive.

As is the norm with these cars, one thing fixed tends to uncover something else. In this case, some occasional hiccuping on high throttle. It's a matter of tuning - driven gently it is OK. No noises from the rear end, no clonks going over bumps, sounds good and tight. As I'd reduced the clutch actuating rod free play a little, I noticed it was changing gear nicely, though 5th to 4th is still a bit of a tug. It seems to be a fair bit quieter too, probably due to the new exhaust box.

Now I shall take it on a dual carriageway and test motorway speeds!
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PostPost by: JonB » Sun Feb 04, 2018 7:38 pm

And here we are after a blast down a reasonably long dual carriageway.

img_4511.jpg and


No problems, but with three people in the car, the N/S rear wheel inner rim edge is fouling the wishbone. Not sure why, will start a new thread with pictures.
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Feb 05, 2018 7:30 am

Had a quick inspection.

img_4513.jpg and
N/S rear bolt clearance.

img_4514.jpg and
N/S front bolt clearance.


The wear in the wishbone edge was me, applying a small amount of angle grinder to try and give more clearance.

Then I noticed the witness marks on the inner lip of the wheel, nearest the tyre.

img_4516.jpg and
Witness marks at wheel lip.


The culprit was the rigid brake line.

img_4523.jpg and
Rigid brake line after "adjustment".


As it's been bent many times before it is all wavy, so I think I will replace it. It isn't Cunifer or anything like that; I'm guessing original from the rigidity of the thing. Astounding how much noise it made against the wheel, and the gouges in the rim suggest it's harder than copper. Fortunately I only drove a few miles with it rubbing. On the way back I had the passenger sit on the other side of the car and it did not rub. Hate to think what could have happened if it had gone through. :shock:

Anyway, have bent it back for now, but looking at the picture there appears to be a crack. I will be sure to inspect it further before driving again.
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PostPost by: billwill » Mon Feb 05, 2018 8:54 pm

I think the early brake pipes were steel and prone to rust through.

Mine rusted through last year but I don't know if they were original; they might have been replaced before by Vegantune Spalding in 82 or Vegantune Finchley in 2001.

I replaced them with Kunifer last year.
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PostPost by: miked » Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:39 am

Without a brake pipe the alloy wheels on a Plus two can make contact with the A frame under vigorous cornering. Plenty written about it in the forum and grinding corners away on outer A frame. Also on Elan.
You will see TTR A frames with the corners cut out if you have ever purchased from him.
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PostPost by: JonB » Wed Feb 07, 2018 1:46 pm

"Without a brake pipe.."? What's that got to do with the wheels catching on the outer A frame? Confused..

Anyway, my alloys have already suffered from clearance problems at the outer A frame mounts. When I reassembled them, I noted reduced clearances in the left hand wheel (vs right hand) so judiciously applied the angle grinder to the arm. All good now.

Incidentally, it's the wheels that suffer the damage, being made of aluminium. I had to sand my N/S wheel down and repaint where the gouging was, so that the existing finish does not come adrift through corrosion. The O/S wheel also needs a little paint and now so does the N/S, although the damage is not in the same place as before. Hopefully that will be the end of it, though I think there is a little bit of play in the O/S rear bearing now. :(
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PostPost by: miked » Wed Feb 07, 2018 2:31 pm

I thought you said the pipe was catching and marking the wheel. My point is that outer bush for and aft flex on the bushes can cause contact with the wheel inner surface. Thats why i like the 14inch wheels. No fag packet clearance issues.
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PostPost by: JonB » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:46 pm

Oh, I see. It's the way you worded your post - I think you meant "apart from the brake pipe". Sorry!

I know the bushes compress and the hub carrier moves relative to the wishbone and this leads to wheel damage. I've got the witness marks to prove it! That said, with the new bushes fitted I seem to have solved this problem although as you say I have "fag packet" clearance. I have original Lotus knock-on alloys in very good condition (professionally restored, paid for by the PO) and so will be keeping them.
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