Lotus Elan

To much steering lock

PostPost by: steveb1 » Sat Aug 27, 2005 4:08 pm

Took the +2 for it's MOT today and it failed because the wheel hit the anti-roll bar when on full lock (turning left). After much investigation and head scratching it looks as though I am missing a piece from the steering rack.
The piece in question is a tube 1.75 inches long (according to the workshop manual) that extends the main rack tube and reduces the lock, I assume this is was a mod when the rack was fitted to a Lotus.
Can anyone confirm my conclusion and PLEASE does anybody have a scrap rack from which they would be willing to sell me the missing piece.
P.S I'm UK based.
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PostPost by: nebogipfel » Sat Aug 27, 2005 5:53 pm

Steve, I think the parts you describe are to extend the rack for fitting to the wider +2 track (It being a Triumph Herald etc rack originaly)

But, Lotus modified the rack to limit the lock (you may well have a Triumph rack on your car) My own S4 had a Triumph rack and I fitted the lock stops myself. I can't remember the measurements but they are probably no more than 1/8th inch and go inside the rack gaitor.

I simply tack welded washers of the appropriate thickness onto the lock nuts

All you are trying to do is make the lock nuts bottom out onto the body of the rack a bit sooner hence reducing the lock slightly.

I'm sure someone will be able to tell you the exact measurements needed
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PostPost by: steveb1 » Sat Aug 27, 2005 6:15 pm

That's it exactly 'make the lock nuts bottom out onto the body of the rack'. However according to the workshop manual and my visual inspection the left lock nut need to hit the rack body much earlier hence the 1.75 inch spacer shown in the workshop manual. My wheel hits the anti-roll bar when the lock nut is still about an inch from the rack body. I suppose any old bit of metal tubing would do but as we are talking about STEERING the correct part would be good. Wouldn't want the rack to unexpectedly jam!!!
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PostPost by: nebogipfel » Sun Aug 28, 2005 9:44 am

Steve, Are you sure you have the correct rack or is it mounted correctly?

I have always thought that the only difference twixt Elan and +2 is the addition of the extentions which screw on before the track rod ends to widen the track to accomodate the wider car.

In fact I looked at my friends +2 lock stops when I needed to make mine.

Otherwise I'm not sure. Perhaps someone else can shed some light on the matter for you?

I would have thought a 1.75inch spacer would severely limit the steering/turning circle!
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PostPost by: types26/36 » Sun Aug 28, 2005 10:55 am

I am no expert on the racks but from what I am led to believe the basic Elan and +2 rack is a Trumph but with a limiting stop (sleeve) it then has longer tie rods then a Trumph and then the +2 also has tie rod extensions as well.
I fitted a +2 rack to my S2 and had to change the tie rods from +2 ones to the Elan ones without the extensions.
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PostPost by: M100 » Sun Aug 28, 2005 6:11 pm

The *rack* on the Elan is identical to the Triumph ones with two exceptions

Stops are fitted at both ends to limit rack travel, one is indeed 1.75" long

The ties rods are slightly shorter - this last point has been discussed at length on the mailing list . You cannot usually safely modify Triumph tie rods to fit as the tie rod thread is "rolled" Any attempt to cut a thread will result in a stress raiser where the thread runs out or more normally a lack of thread diameter (the thread being a greater diameter than the rest of the tie rod)


The rack spacer dimensions are on the attached photo.


Getting a machine shop to knock them up should only cost a few quid.

The Elan +2 rack is identical to the Elan rack - the only change is the addition of tie rod extentions to cater for the greater track.

Most of the bits to rebuild them are still available from Moss Europe
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Elan_Steering_Rack_Dimensions.jpg and
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