Lotus Elan

water pump

PostPost by: pmpsantos » Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:23 am

Hi! I think was already spoken here in the forum but...

Has the original water pump of the twincam engine got problems?
A guy here in Portugal told me that everybody has problems with the original one, and as i'm rebuiding my engine that it's better to buy the Burton kit with the cover and pump changed!
Can anyone help me on this? I was thinking to buy a repairing kit to rebuilt my pump, but now i'm afraid...
Thanks a lot!!
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Thu Jun 21, 2007 5:33 am

Although I've never used anything but stock pumps on seven Elans over thirty years, if I was rebuilding an engine today, I would not use one. I'm not familiar with the Burton kits but I'd consider any external arrangement that is endorsed on this web site.
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PostPost by: cliveyboy » Thu Jun 21, 2007 7:22 am

The Burton water pump conversion not only makes life easier for replacing in the future. Because its a new casting it tends to seal better and helps eliminate leaks in general at the front of the engine.
Apart from originality I do not think you will hear many things said against the conversion. I like my one

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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Thu Jun 21, 2007 11:13 am

The only thing that the Burton pump cartrige kit has going against it is the price, at approximately 400 GBP for every thing you need to assemble one, it is not exactly in line with everyones pocket. I do like the fact that burton has made both front cover and back plates for the 1500 block and the taller 1600 block. I haven't had to replace a stock water pump other than the initial build of either of the two Elans I have driven since 1993. One was driven a fair amount 35k to 40k miles) from 93 to 04 and sold (it did have and engine swap in 98 for other reasons and the swaped in engine had a new pump). The other is a bit modified and gets infrequent use, It has seen around 4000 miles since 1998. This Elan sits in a garage 4 or 5 months in the winter with out driving much or at all depending on the weather. If you keep the belt tention loose the bearing in the stock water pump lasts a long time.

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PostPost by: chicagojeff » Thu Jun 21, 2007 2:43 pm

i rebuilt mine with the one offered by Dave Bean. Again, the only downside is that it is not cheap. But, it has 2 selling points: it is a lot beefier than the original in terms of bearnings and machining, and also, it is a cassette design, so when the thing has problems, you can just pull out the hub without removing the whole front chest plate.

some people say that there is no need for it, since you would pull the engine anyway at the time the original pump would likely fail, and slap on a new stock pump. I could see that philosophy as well, I just didn't do it.
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PostPost by: mac5777 » Thu Jun 21, 2007 3:36 pm

I also put in one of Dave Bean's cassette water pumps and ended the water problems. After my rebuild with only 2000 miles the new pump failed. Yep, out with the engine AGAIN. If I had done it the first time i would have been a genius and saved a bunch. It is much easier if the engine is out anyway but in my case @#**# ,,, If a pump fails before the engine needs to be pulled again, I can do it easily.

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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Thu Jun 21, 2007 4:56 pm

Hi Sarto
I must be either lucky or good or a bit of both, Like I said stock pumps and loose belts do live. I had a generator in the first Elan and Dave Bean alternator in the next. If I had the extra cash around and was building a tall deck Twin Cam I would probably buy a Burton pump... if I had the money.

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PostPost by: gordonlund » Thu Jun 21, 2007 5:53 pm

I have heard pros and cons for both sides of the arguement but can only speak for the original design because thats what I have always used in 26 years. OK. the original can be unreliable if not built up correctly and/or the fan belt is too tight. The problem appears to be in the pump carbon seal not seating and sealed correctly in the casing. The seal itself could be doing a marvelous job of keeping water where it should be but is of no use if the seal body itself leaks between itself and the casing. If this has happened, corrosion of the casing occurs and sealing becomes a real challenge. Cleanliness of the highest order, removal of all sediments and grease and uniform use of high grade silicon sealants is required. same for the insert carrier o rings as well.

The cassette pump has had problems in the past, some manufacturers getting it completly wrong. Some just did not fit properly. Some were lacking in cassette removal after being in service they became jammed requiring the front cover to be removed to enable the cassette to be extracted. Rather negating the original intention.

I suspect that Burton has resolved most of these problems but as in most cases you pays your money and makes your choice.

Regards

Gordon Lund
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PostPost by: mopho » Thu Jun 21, 2007 6:32 pm

I just had the Bean pump installed on my engine during the rebuild. For me, it was worth the cost of entry just for the peace of mind.
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PostPost by: bcmc33 » Thu Jun 21, 2007 8:23 pm

From my perspective, the standard pump is definitely a suspect item when connected to a dynamo (generator) as it is standard practice to get the belt as tight as possible to ensure a constant electrical supply. In the ?old? days it was my standard practice tighten the fan belt every weekend.
With an alternator there should be no such problem as the relative belt tension is much reduced, and hence the stress on the pump significantly reduced.

It would be good to hear if people are having pump failure problems with an alternator.


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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Fri Jun 22, 2007 2:50 am

...at the moment I can go one better. Newish alternator failure, old water pump fine.
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PostPost by: triumphelan » Fri Jun 22, 2007 6:50 am

I fitted a tooth belt kit from Vulcan it came with the 3 pulleys .Because the belt is toothed it can be run at low tension
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PostPost by: freddy22112211 » Fri Jun 22, 2007 9:15 am

I put a new pump in, and it failed almost immediately - the ceramic washer had broken. Put the old non-ceramic washer back in - no problems.
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PostPost by: Dag-Henning » Fri Jun 22, 2007 11:04 am

- there has been trouble whith some of the new pump repair-kits. If you aim for the "correct" clearence between the impeller and the ring, the small slinger will / may touch the seal, and break it after very short time. It may be smart to do some measuring before pressing the impeller onto the shaft , and also give it a little bit more clearence. This will not destroy the cooling, and may save you another pump rebuild.

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PostPost by: ppnelan » Fri Jun 22, 2007 11:17 am

The standard water pump should be as reliable as any other part (?!) IF the fan belt is NOT overtightened.... The only problem is that if you do need to change it, it's a big job with the original front cover assembly.

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