Lotus Elan

My Voigt 5-speed conversion

PostPost by: JonB » Fri Apr 10, 2020 10:22 am

Regarding that gearbox mounting plate, maybe you could planish a fold over using a vice and hammer. If I were you, I'd look to reinstate the fold as it imparts a good deal of strength to the plate. The mount plate on my car (probably original) has both flanges and I think it needs them. If the sheet is a bit too thick, you might try cutting a line where the inside of the fold would be, then fold it, then weld the cut bit up. Or not, if Alan is going to see you right.
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PostPost by: 661 » Fri Apr 10, 2020 11:03 am

I suspect you'll get the TTR downpipes to fit with a bit of jiggery-pokery, but the 2 into 1 section may need cutting at it's joining weld and re TIG-ing at an angle to miss your centre case ( as I needed to do on the standard car and 4 speed but aluminium centre case.)
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PostPost by: Donels » Fri Apr 10, 2020 4:41 pm

Some pics of the early mounting for info.

5F32E8E4-3E4C-4264-8218-64D161E9F1FF.jpeg and


D8494CD7-5848-4AD9-A174-8FDE1617C4CE.jpeg and


5DF1666F-C6AD-4B85-8240-23662999954D.jpeg and


5DF1666F-C6AD-4B85-8240-23662999954D.jpeg and
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PostPost by: 1owner69Elan » Fri Apr 10, 2020 6:02 pm

Donels wrote:Some pics of the early mounting for info.

5F32E8E4-3E4C-4264-8218-64D161E9F1FF.jpeg


D8494CD7-5848-4AD9-A174-8FDE1617C4CE.jpeg


5DF1666F-C6AD-4B85-8240-23662999954D.jpeg


5DF1666F-C6AD-4B85-8240-23662999954D.jpeg


Very helpful pictures. I am in the process of arranging to put the second flange on the plate with a local fabricator - assuming we can connect during this crisis.
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PostPost by: steve lyle » Sat Apr 11, 2020 4:44 am

Today's progress report.

It took all afternoon/evening, but the transmission and engine are in. They're on their mounts. Nothing else is in - everything I took off the engine is still off, but, literally, the heavy lifting is done.

There was one "gotcha". Sometime during the push-me/pull you on the transmission, it must have competed with the chassis for space, and I broke off the contacts on the reverse switch. So no reverse light until I figure out what switch I need (I'm guessing it's not a match for the one on the old tranny) and get it replaced. I assume the mistake was leaving the switch in while wresting the tranny into position, so maybe, don't do that. I'm hoping I can replace the switch by dropping the rear mount a bit. Fingers crossed.

Anyway, the general process was:

With the rear on dollies (so up about 6"), get the front on axle stands. Position the tranny on the floor just in front of the tunnel entrance, and lift up the tail piece and put it into the tunnel a bit. Then slide a jack under it, as far forward as possible on the case, and jack it up/move it back until the front edge clears the front crossmember. Get it above the crossmember, then move the tranny fore/aft until it's roughly in the right spot.

Try to avoid the tranny sliding off the jack and cratering the floor. It will want to do that, so watch it.

Then look back into the tunnel and realize you don't have the driveshaft in. So move the tranny forward a bit, and to the side, and slide the driveshaft into the tunnel - eventually get your left hand on the yoke, and with your right grab the rear driveshaft flange and lift it out of the tunnel. Whew. Now go forward and insert the yoke into to tailshaft.

Then hook up the speedo cable.

From there, again locating the tranny fore/aft about where it will eventually go, bolt on the rear mount, and then the spacer and plate/rear support/cross member thingy. Leave the fasteners through the spacer a bit loose, then bolt the crossmember to the chasssis, again leaving those bolts a bit loose (the engine mounts will determine final fore/aft placement.

Jack the tranny up about as far as it will go.

Get the engine on the crane, and with lots of little movements of the crane frame and hydraulics position the engine just in front of the tranny, input shaft lined up with the clutch center, and engine rear face parallel with the bellhousing. If your crane is like mine, you'll need to move the jack stands under the front crossmember closer together so the crane legs fit outside of them. To do that, put a jack under one of the wheels, take the weight off the stand on that side, and move it inward. Repeat on the other side if necessary.

Remember that you forgot to leave the tranny in gear, and can't remember if it was or not, so get the gear shift and roughly fit it, just enough so you can shift it into first.

Then with a wrench on the main pulley bolt, and everything lined up, give the crank a slight cw rotation to line up the clutch splines. Check engine alignment with tranny, shove it back, turn crank a bit, check alignment, shove the engine back.

Eventually, if you've been living right, the engine will be almost there, at least close enough for the engine to bellhousing bolts through the doweled holes to catch threads. You might need to rotate the engine a bit. Get the bolts engaged for a couple of turns with fingers only - you don't want to rip those aluminum threads. Once you're sure, put a wrench on the the bolt and get it almost there. When you're within 1/16" of an inch or so, get some wirecutters and cut the light wire you used in to keep the sheet metal plate that goes between engine and transmission in place (I wired it in place using the holes just above the doweled ones - I know Alan said use thread, but my thread kept breaking so I used wire).

Once the doweled holes are tight, apply the remaining bellhousing bolts.

Then on to the engine mounts. Do these twice - first with the "open" (non-metal) end of the mounts pointing up. Spend about an hour getting those in place, then realize that they'll never match up to the chassis holes that way, so go Google "Lotus Elan engine mount" pictures to verify that you're an idiot, and got the mounts upside down, so take them off and put them back on the right way - secure in the knowledge that you'll never make that mistake again.

Finally, bolt the mounts to the chassis. Put the car away for the night so you can get the wife's car into the garage, enabling domestic tranquility. Go rest your tired body so that you can finish this thing up in the next few days.

Follow these steps exactly, or else you'll get the job done in about 1/2 the time it took me. Leaving you with idle time that you'll no doubt make no good use of. So don't do it.
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Sat Apr 11, 2020 7:22 am

Steve,
well done that man.
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PostPost by: steve lyle » Sat Apr 11, 2020 3:31 pm

A couple of refinements to my play-by-play.

Once the tranny is in, and the mount (lightly) bolted up, don't forget to put the clutch bleed line in. No, I didn't forget.

And the first thing to do after getting the engine bolted to the tranny, and before the mounts go on, is to get the headers on. AFAIK this can't be done with the left-side mount in place, or with the right-side for that matter, since the engine needs to be shoved to the right to make room to get them on. No, I didn't forget to do that, either.

Once the headers are on, before putting on the nut to the most rear stud, finish routing the bleed line - it anchors to that rear stud.
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PostPost by: 1owner69Elan » Sat Apr 11, 2020 6:43 pm

Steve, thanks for the detailed account of the installation. Very helpful as I plan my future (and hopefully near term) moves.

It was good that you included any minor mis-steps along the way. Good caution about the reverse light switch - I'll protect that somehow. Perhaps wrap it in foam or something.

I'm leaning toward using a flexible bleed line. Also considering not attaching it to the header bolt but instead a more accessible (and less hot) spot on the bulkhead. I have a flex line on order with some extra length. We'll see how that works out.

Still waiting on the gearshift plug from Alan - been more than 2 weeks. Said he was mailing it with a sketch (not sure what a sketch would entail). Maybe a layout for positioning the retention screw.

Also, need to order an uprated friction driven plate but want to verify that my lightened Fidanza flywheel will accept a 8.5 inch disk. Need to remove the engine first to verify.

One further thought on the installation, I might consider connecting the clutch lines and bleeding it before putting all the rest of the bits back on the engine (carbs, etc.), tightening the exhaust manifold, radiator back in, etc. Just to ensure the slave cylinder is working, because if it is not, it's engine out, and all those items will have to be removed again.
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PostPost by: steve lyle » Sat Apr 11, 2020 6:50 pm

1owner69Elan wrote:
One further thought on the installation, I might consider connecting the clutch lines and bleeding it before putting all the rest of the bits back on the engine (carbs, etc.), tightening the exhaust manifold, radiator back in, etc. Just to ensure the slave cylinder is working, because if it is not, it's engine out, and all those items will have to be removed again.


Great minds.... Hooking up the clutch, bleeding and testing is the next item on my list.
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PostPost by: Foxie » Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:59 am

I cut a hole in the cross member to enable a socket to remove the central mounting bolt directly.

:)
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Sun Apr 12, 2020 5:35 am

Hi Steve,
sorry i forgot to remind you to put the Manifold in the Engine bay and tie it to the side with a second bit of String(or wire if you prefer) :(
On my TVR 3000S i checked the Angle of the Diff Output Flange and the Angle of the Gearbox to be sure they were parrellel . Maybe you will need to Shim/Pack between Gearbox rubber Mount and Support Plate. You need to do this to be sure the UJs in the Prop Shaft are synchronised/ in Phase . You can buy an Angle Block/Gauge very cheap that works with a battery. It measures the Angle and you can Zero the readout or lock on the small Screen.
Measure Diff Flange vertical angle and compare to vertical angle across Crankshaft Pulley.
Have fun and go easy on the Chocolate Easter Eggs :wink:
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PostPost by: 1owner69Elan » Sun Apr 12, 2020 10:22 pm

alan.barker wrote:Hi Steve,

On my TVR 3000S i checked the Angle of the Diff Output Flange and the Angle of the Gearbox to be sure they were parrellel . Maybe you will need to Shim/Pack between Gearbox rubber Mount and Support Plate.
Alan


Perhaps this check on u-joint angles is why these washers are provided to enable raising the gearbox at the mount. No other idea of where else they are intended to be used.
IMG_5173.jpg and


This check of angularity had not occurred to me but since we are deviating from the stock 4-speed configuration it may be a good idea.

I should be able to use the gauge from my camber tool to accomplish this.
IMG_5174.jpg and
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PostPost by: steve lyle » Mon Apr 13, 2020 4:26 pm

Alan, Mr. 68Elan,

I took those large washers as intended to be used on the crossmember and spacer slots.

OK, what's the worst that will happen if I don't bother checking the angles? Vibration? Premature u-joint failure? Voight didn't mention this in his instructions. He did mention that some cars seem to need his spacer, plus the original spacers (he doesn't mention using washers as spacers). At this point my thinking is that it's a reasonable risk to go forward. Wish me luck! In my defense, it did seem like the angle of the engine mounts still matched the mating flange on the chassis brackets. So if the angle of the new engine/tranny isn't identical to the original, it's very close.

Mr Foxie - neat idea. I assume you had to cut out a section of the spacer as well? If I had a big hole saw I might try it, but, alas I don't (or a plasma cutter). Maybe one day....

After a couple of days off, I'll be back at it tomorrow. Crossing my fingers on the clutch hydraulics...
Steve Lyle
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Tue Apr 14, 2020 7:47 am

Hi Steve,
the Vertical angle of the Diff Input Flange must be the same as the Vertical Angle of Output Flange on Gearbox or it will be out of Phase.
If out of Phase it will give a surging effect at constant Revs. "Elantrikbits" used to have a Video Clip which showed it well. It's difficult for me to explain.
Alan
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PostPost by: vxah » Tue Apr 14, 2020 8:29 am

The Hooks type joint when driven through an angle speeds up and slows down as it rotates, having another joint at the other end at an opposite and equal angle will counter act the speed changes and bring the drive speed smooth again.
Obviously if the angles are not the same then the correction will not be equal and the speed will not be fully corrected.
Obviously this set up would not be easy to achieve with front wheel drive “steering” but, the constant velocity joint does just that!
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