Lotus Elan

Free Flow Air Filters

PostPost by: JACKJABBA » Sat Feb 07, 2004 3:04 pm

Are these ok to fit on the Elan. I have heard that they are not suitable for fibreglass cars due to the posibility of fire caused by spitback?
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PostPost by: elansprint71 » Sat Feb 07, 2004 11:55 pm

3 yrs ago when I bought my current Elan fitted with K&N filters I asked just this question- any evidence of fires/scares from folks without standard air boxes? Not one negative reply. I subsequently discovered that the standard airbox has one side made from glass fibre, therefore it can be impregnated with petrol and will be in direct contact with any spit-back flame and far more likely to toast you than K&N, etc.
My advice, fit K&N, ditch the heavy metal box in the nose and the ducting and enjoy better breathing than was dreamed of in the 60's and with less fire risk too.

Discuss,

Pete
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PostPost by: BillGavin » Sun Feb 08, 2004 1:11 pm

Even though the airbox cover can absorb fuel, any fire will be inside the airbox and will be somewhat contained, and likely to be sucked out if the engine is running. Air filters will suck up fuel like sponges, and open air filters will allow fuel to drip right through: if the fuel lights up, it won't be contained for very long. You're also drawing in air that has been heated by the radiator.

I have a big conical K&N mounted transversely in front of the radiator, with a large diameter duct to the stock airbox. I think this gives the best results, the filter is remote from the carbs, cool air is assured, airflow is more than adequate, anf the induction noise is moved as far away as possible. The only obvious down side is that the cool air could be a problem is very cold weather: I see snow and put the car away before temps get to that point here in New hampshire.

BTW if you remove a significant restriction in the induction tract, be prepared to rejet the carbs to compensate.
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PostPost by: JACKJABBA » Sun Feb 08, 2004 1:39 pm

Thanks for the input, I have the same set up as you Bill, but my fibre cover has started to break up and they are not exactly cheap to replace, when you can get the free flow filters at around the same price. The large diameter tube is also quite a tight fit in the space it takes up. I will probably just try to repair it for now.

Regards Jack
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PostPost by: type36lotus » Mon Feb 09, 2004 12:09 am

I too had the K&N filters on my Dell'ortos for a while. Talk about induction noise, jet aircraft taking off are quieter. I took my Elan on a 60 mile trip at about 80MPH, by the time I got home my ears were actually ringing! I now have a K&N cone filter in the nose with the big hose(yes a VERY tight fit) and the stock box. I have to agree the fibrglass part is expensive, lucky for me my car at least came with the metal back plate, so I didn't have to buy both. I am very please with the up-front cone filter, performance, safety and low sound level.

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PostPost by: asc » Fri Feb 27, 2004 8:24 pm

Jack I hae had no problems over last few years with K&Ns on an S2 Elan. But for sure when your stationary with an idling engine the air temperature going into the carbs quickly increases, how much of a problem this is, is debateable, but with a front air intake you always get air in, at fairly well ambient temp. My measuring exercise showed that once your moving the air temp into the cards was within a couple of degrees of ambient. Tony
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