Lotus Elan

Elan Koni rear Inserts?

PostPost by: Grizzly » Sat Dec 07, 2013 1:57 pm

Hi all.

I'm after a bit of help with my Koni rear Inserts.

I'm having a bit of a Nightmare, right the story goes.... I am rebuilding a 1971 Elan and while fitting rear wheel bearings noticed one of the struts was leaking oil (and the c-nuts were a little worse for wear after someone had removed them at some point with a chisel) So i asked about and came across a pair of good Koni inserts :)

Skipping on a bit, i have fitted said Inserts now after much aggravation with the mangled C-nuts, the chap i bought the Inserts off told me they are Adjustable and to adjust them all i do is push the Chrome ram all the way to the bottom and turn according to how hard or soft i wanted them....... Right so i push them all the way down and set them to halfway but when i come to pull the ram back out it's having none of it (moves about 2 or 3 mm then it wont go any more no matter how hard i pull it) :(

So.... I decide to hang the assembly from the strut top for a day or so to hopefully pull it out with the weight of the hub assembly which is when i found the the top castle nut doesn't fit either (too big) so i can't even fix them up well enough without the risk of them falling :(

So as i can't find my Thread Pitch gauges for the life of me does anyone know what size the Castle nut on a Koni rear Insert is? and also have i got something stuck in the Strut? or should i just leave hanging and see if it drops of its own accord?

Any idea's would be most welcome.
Chris
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PostPost by: oldelanman » Sat Dec 07, 2013 2:28 pm

Roger
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PostPost by: Lyn7 » Sat Dec 07, 2013 3:26 pm

Hi, if you have Koni "Special D" inserts which I think are a period option I have a couple on the shelf.
They appear to be 16mm x 1.5 pitch. Good luck :)
Lyn...
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Sat Dec 07, 2013 3:53 pm

Lyn7 wrote:Hi, if you have Koni "Special D" inserts which I think are a period option I have a couple on the shelf.
They appear to be 16mm x 1.5 pitch. Good luck :)
Lyn...

Thats great cheers, i'll get some on monday.

I was just looking at the old Castle nuts and they seem to have a spacer on the bottom, do the Koni original Nuts have that step? (might have to make something up)
Chris
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PostPost by: sveris » Sat Dec 07, 2013 8:30 pm

Here's the email address of the guy I contacted at Koni NA for assistance: [email protected]. This was back in 2008. HTH.

Steve
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PostPost by: andyelan » Sun Dec 08, 2013 2:34 pm

Hi There

If the inserts are Koni Classics, then the top nuts are M16x1.5 (24mmAF). The castle nuts on the original Armstrong units (which of course are a different thread) have a spigot on the bottom so they are a snug fit in the top Lotocone mountings, this wasn't present on the nuts supplied with the Konis so I ended up machining the one on myself.

Although the Konis are very good quality items, even set half way, I found them far too soft. I would suggest they need to be set somewhere close to their maximum for best results. I never tried this myself however as I had a pair of NOS Armstrongs and fitted these instead

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PostPost by: billwill » Sun Dec 08, 2013 2:41 pm

I would try altering the adjustable damper setting again. You may have closed the valve completely.

You say you think you put them half-way, but how did you work that out. I guess it is possble that the internal valve closes on some sort of spring basis, before the screw actually reaches the end of travel.
Bill Williams

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PostPost by: Grizzly » Sun Dec 08, 2013 6:19 pm

Well what i did was push the Strut all the way in to engage the Adjuster, then turn it all the way clock wise until it hits the stop, then all the way anticlockwise until it hit the stop (two and a half turns), then back half way (1 1/4 turns) which should be half way?

There is an Arrow on the side of the Strut showing the direction thats firmer (just forget which way it was now)

I'll have another play tomorrow, i have an old strut assembly with an original Armstrong strut fitted so the plan was to adjust it to similar resistance but i haven't been able to get the strut back out yet.
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PostPost by: andyelan » Mon Dec 09, 2013 7:43 am

Hi Gizzly

I can't see there's any thing wrong with what you're doing. It's no differen't to how I adjusted mine and I had no problems with the rod sticking. If you do get them freed off, I'd check to ensure the rods aren't bent or damaged in any way. Possibly thay just need exercising a bit if they've been sitting around for a while.

For your information, on my dampers the total adjustment min to max was 2 1/6 turns or 780 degrees however I found that nothing happened for at least the first 3/4 turn

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Andy
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Mon Dec 09, 2013 11:41 am

Am i correct in saying to make them firmer you turn the chrome rod clock wise? there is an Arrow on the body of the strut but its not exactly clear if you turn the body in the direction of the arrow or the chrome rod (bit soft i know but as i can't adjust these on the car i just wanted to be sure)
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PostPost by: worzel » Mon Dec 09, 2013 12:59 pm

Hi Grizzly

As far as I know any adjustment on your konis is to reset the damping to standard to compensate for gradual wear- they don't adjust for stiffness.

I've had konis on mine for about 20 years or so with no discernible wear- yet. I seem to recall they can be "re-adjusted" 3 times maximium.

Regards

PS if you get stuck with your problem get back to me- I still have the original adjustment instructions somewhere

John
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Mon Dec 09, 2013 5:03 pm

I may be wrong but i thought the adjustable shock absorber is supposed to be so you can increase the stiffness of your spring and increase the damping accordingly.

I managed to get the Chrome rod out after alot of messing, i ended up hanging it from the top nut which didn't do allot at first so i fitted a road wheel to the hub for a bit of extra weight and it started to move slowly (took a day to come out completely). I had a think about how hard to set these Dampers and fortunately i had an old hub assembly that had a strut still in it so i fitted that to one side, i then had a bit of a side to side comparison between the Koni and stock.

I have come to the conclusion that mine set to half way are very similar to the original set up, i know i may regret doing this but after talking to the guy i bought the car off i am going to turn them up a little more i think, he said if i can make the rear a little firmer it would definitely benefit as he always thought it was a bit soft.

So at least i know how to get the Chrome ram back out now :)
Chris
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PostPost by: worzel » Tue Dec 10, 2013 12:54 pm

Hi Grizzly

You're right- adjustable for some dampers does mean you can stiffen them up- but Koni rear inserts don't do that (according to the Koni leaflet that came with mine)- adjustment is only to compensate for wear (although I don't know about later Koni inserts as these might be adjustable for resistance).

Regards

John
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