Lotus Elan

Tire Brand And Size?

PostPost by: chicagojeff » Fri May 13, 2005 3:20 am

hey all. I am taking suggestions for new tires. Any size and brand recommendations? 67 FHC. thanks!
67 S3 FHC
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PostPost by: steveww » Fri May 13, 2005 8:04 am

The very best are Michelin XAS 155 x 13 but they are very expensive :o

The best budget option is the Uniroyal Rallye 680 155 x 13
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PostPost by: chicagojeff » Fri May 13, 2005 1:14 pm

thanks steve!
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PostPost by: type26owner » Fri May 13, 2005 1:51 pm

If you want your car to handle well at high cornering forces then buy the Bridgestone RE92. They are sized P165/65R13 which puts the overall tire diameter at 21.4" That's 1.5" smaller than what originally fit the car. What makes these tires special is there are stiffeners in the sidewalls which reduces the amount of flexing. These tires really handle and make the Elan come alive as a road weapon. Dry pressures should be set to 22psi and not allowed to build up pressure and exceed 26psi while on the track or the car will develop a nasty snap oversteer tendency. Wet roads require the pressure be reduced to 18psi to get some grip back. They are not very good on wet roads however. They will fit under the stock bodywork of an S2 with the 4.5" wide wheels. With the grip level of these tires I would strongly urge you to purchase new wheels with the safety beads. Using these tires on old wheels would be just asking for a rollover due to a blowout.
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PostPost by: type26owner » Fri May 13, 2005 2:52 pm

Oh hey, I've got the smaller diameter coil spring modification installed on the rear suspension so I'm not sure if these tires will rub on the original springs or not.

Tirerack lists them for $41. I've so far gotten at least 10k miles on my first set of tires but the outboard edges of the tread is getting a bit thin and there's the WCLM trackday coming up soon so it's time to install a new set. That works out to just four $41 tires per year, not bad. On my Maserati Biturbo I was going through sixteen $130 tires per year. No wonder I was broke all the time. Best move I ever did was sell that piece of sh*t.
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PostPost by: brassrngfm » Fri May 13, 2005 6:41 pm

ChicagoJeff--
I also have the RE92 Bridgestones and ordered them from a local tire dealer at the same price. I have been quite pleased with them (I don't race) and have standard springs all around. I got them because I had some minor rubbing on hard cornering on the right front side and the smaller circumference cured the problem. But the real improvement in handling was obvious immediately. Even though I have a new body - my car - like many on the list, is not 100% symmetric on the chassis (skewed about 3/8-1/2" to the left) - hence the rubbing problem. These tires are a 'best buy'on my list.
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PostPost by: steveww » Fri May 13, 2005 6:42 pm

Keith,

You have to try the Michelin XAS FF 155 x 13. Classic round shouldered design so works well with Lotus suspension. Stiff side walls and very soft sticky rubber, the same compound as the Pilot Cup tyres, the control tyre for the Porsche Cup. Additionally they are H rated (130mph). So far I have not found their limit on the road, I have a track session booked so I can test them more completely. As I said they are very expensive but IMHO worth every penny :D
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PostPost by: type26owner » Fri May 13, 2005 6:56 pm

Steve,
Yup, I've checked them out. IIRC, they only have 3/32 of thread depth and are an ultra-performance compound. I'd go through a set of those every two weeks.

You should have seen what I did to the really expensive tires I bought from Coker Tires for my 62 Corvette. The steel belts were showing through the thread in one week or just 250 miles of commuting. I was pissed when the their tire engineer played totally dumb and went silent. They're a bunch of crooks! They didn't even handle well. Ya have to get an old Corvette sideways with power on to hurry them through the corners though.

I also feel better about taking these RE92s out on the racetrack because they are also speed rated as H.
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PostPost by: frearther » Fri May 13, 2005 9:30 pm

Hey, Keith,

Where did you come up with that emoticon creeping under the car?

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PostPost by: type26owner » Sat May 14, 2005 1:04 am

Hi Art,
My son found it. He figured I was lame enough to use it and he was correct. Ordered him to keep an eye out for one with a Lotus, an Elan preferably. Suppose I should change it to something else.

Just do a search with 'smiley faces' and you'll find there are tens of thousands of them.
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PostPost by: robb4100 » Mon May 16, 2005 2:02 pm

Keith,

I am having the same problem with rubbing (on the right) near steering lock on left turns. I am running michilin MX4 155 R13. The overall diameter of that tire is about 22.5 " Sounds like the bridgstones may solve my problem.

My question:
They will fit under the stock bodywork of an S2 with the 4.5" wide wheels. With the grip level of these tires I would strongly urge you to purchase new wheels with the safety beads. Using these tires on old wheels would be just asking for a rollover due to a blowout


How does one know if one has the wheels with safety beads? I have an S2 but do not want to turn an annoyance into a safety hazard.

Assuming that I go with the Brigestone is there a way to calibrate the Speedometer to the smaller tires?

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PostPost by: type26owner » Mon May 16, 2005 3:02 pm

Hi Robb,
Have a look at this article.
<a href='http://www.diamondracingwheels.com/TermsSafetyBeads.htm' target='_blank'>http://www.diamondracingwheels.com/TermsSa...SafetyBeads.htm</a>

The RE92s rub on the front end swaybar at full steering lock too. I'll get around to adding a spacer onto either end of the rack to stop this someday. It's not high on my list of things to do though because it's not a safety related issue.

I use to love the MX4s until I took them out on the track for the first time. Had to inflate them to nearly 60 psi so I wouldn't get killed. My neighbor around the corner is a vintage racer and also a retired homicide detective. He is now a part-time high performance driver instructor for the local law enforcement folks. He told me they inflate the police cruiser's tires to 50 psi so they handle otherwise the bad guy gets away everytime.

IIRC, the error in the speedo is on the level of 6%. I didn't bother trying to find a shop to work on it. Again, it's on my list but lurking near the bottom.
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PostPost by: steveww » Mon May 16, 2005 3:37 pm

Keith,

I think you have XAS confused with some other tyres. The Michelin XAS FF is a regular road tyre with a generous ammount of tread depth (when new ;) ). I have not measured the depth but it looks like any other road tyre I have used.

With the increased grip available from these tyres I can no longer slide the car round some of favourite bends (Not happy with that level of commitment on the public road, you never know there may be another nutter coming the other way). Not long to go to the trackday now, so that I can really find the limit B)
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PostPost by: robb4100 » Mon May 16, 2005 3:41 pm

Hi Kieth,

My tire actually rubs on the fibreglass on the front of the wheel well- not the sway bar. There is a nice black worn patch from the outside of the tire as it rubs against the wall. It used to happen only when I had a large (>150lb) passenger but now happens all the time (I had a roll bar installed (probably the extra weight) It now seems to happen at about 70% of wheel lock.

Thanks for the info on the safety bead. Given that I have origninal wheels- I presume that none of them would have the bead. I will probably need to replace the wheels with the tires.

Any Ideas on how I can get just a little more clearance so that I can put off replacing tires and wheel for a little while. I may just live with it if it is not a real hazard. Using the car to enjoy our spring and summer weather not for any high performance racing and the lot. It is however a lot of fun to buz around the country roads.

Thanks again for the help.

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PostPost by: type26owner » Mon May 16, 2005 6:13 pm

Hey Steve,
It's entirely possible I'm confused. Thought the 'FF' stood for Formula Ford. They were a spec tire at one time IIRC.
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