Lotus Elan

Groan - not tyres AGAIN!

PostPost by: Geoffers71 » Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:26 pm

I know this has been done to death, but please be gentle with me :roll: I'm in the process of replacing the tyres on the S2 and have decided on Kumho K17 at ?38 fitted from Blackcircles. I'm aware of all the pros and cons re size and that 145/13 were the OE. The size of the tyres I took off were 155/13 and I would prefer to replace with the same size. Should I do that, or should I play safe and put on 145s? My motives are purely aesthetic in that I think the 155s look better, but if they're likely to foul the wheel arch it's an obvious no-no. The 155s I took off were probably nearly 40 years old :shock: , so were 155s that long ago likely to be different ? Looking at the question now it looks a bit daft, but as I said be gentle with me, as I get older my indecision seems to get worse :roll: :wink:
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PostPost by: Ross Robbins » Fri Apr 18, 2014 10:03 pm

I have run modern sets of 155/80 X13 tires on my S2 for over 25,000 miles with no problems. Old tires are dangerous and if 155 tires were on your car the new ones will fit as well. Just do it.
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PostPost by: ElanSeries2 » Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:07 am

I also have 155s on my S2. They should fit, but the only way to find out is to try them. You may need to grind a touch off the inside of the arch lip if you are unlucky, but you may be fine. Any small side-to-side offset of the body relative to the chassis may be shown up (ie one side rubs, the other is clear). Worth also checking the tyre to spring perch clearance inside the arch.
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PostPost by: Geoffers71 » Sat Apr 19, 2014 9:22 am

Thanks for the replies chaps. Very reassuring, 155s it is then :D
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PostPost by: fatboyoz » Sat Apr 19, 2014 10:05 am

Geoff,
Original sizes eg: 145/13 equates to 145/82R13. This is a width of 145mm and a depth of 119mm (82 percent of 145). Overall diameter=13 inch plus 238mm.

If you fit 155/13 this equates to 155/82R13. Overall diameter=13 inch plus 254mm. These tyres would be taller.

If fitting 155s, I would think that 155/75R13 would be a better size. Overall diameter=13 inch plus 232.5mm. Closer in diameter to your original tyres.

Also, The Kumho K17 ("Solus" I think) should be a fairly reasonable tyre.
Cheers,
Colin.

Geoffers71 wrote:I know this has been done to death, but please be gentle with me :roll: I'm in the process of replacing the tyres on the S2 and have decided on Kumho K17 at ?38 fitted from Blackcircles. I'm aware of all the pros and cons re size and that 145/13 were the OE. The size of the tyres I took off were 155/13 and I would prefer to replace with the same size. Should I do that, or should I play safe and put on 145s? My motives are purely aesthetic in that I think the 155s look better, but if they're likely to foul the wheel arch it's an obvious no-no. The 155s I took off were probably nearly 40 years old :shock: , so were 155s that long ago likely to be different ? Looking at the question now it looks a bit daft, but as I said be gentle with me, as I get older my indecision seems to get worse :roll: :wink:
Last edited by fatboyoz on Sun Apr 20, 2014 4:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: Geoffers71 » Sat Apr 19, 2014 1:38 pm

Colin, Thanks for your contribution. I've followed your calcs and you're right of course, but I can't find ANY tyres which are 155/75s. Certainly Kumho and other leading makes don't appear to supply them :( It's either 70s or 80s, so I guess I'll have to go for 80s, unless you can point me in the direction of 75s in an acceptable make.
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PostPost by: Galwaylotus » Sat Apr 19, 2014 7:36 pm

155/80 should be ok. You should check the suspension bushings, especially the spring/damper unit mounts as they settle as they age (rubber) and that itself can cause interference.
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PostPost by: archigator » Sat Apr 19, 2014 9:03 pm

My Sprint had 155's on it when I purchased it used 26 years ago. I admit they look better than the 145's, but I had an issue once when making a hard right turn up a parking garage ramp, and the tire did actually take a chuck out of my fender. I switched to 145's (Kumho's) and have had no problems. If you do go with the 155's, watch those sharp uphill turns!

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PostPost by: el-saturn » Sun Apr 20, 2014 6:49 am

my easter "tyre" contribution (i?m almost the opposite of a purist) is: yokohama A539 - 175/60/13. these
are rel. modern tyres compared to most of the 145, 155 and 165 which are made for cars like daihatsu etc..
having fortytwoandahalf h.p.! some of our elans are closer to 4-fold! some of you will dislike the above
while others may (yes, you may!!) clap. cheers sandy
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Sun Apr 20, 2014 10:42 am

I agree Sandy and Yoko A-048R and Dunlop and others equivalents even better still. Lots of sticky track day style tyres in 175 and 185 / 60 x13 they last 5 to 10 thousand km on the road which is plenty for a fun car. The lower rolling radius means you don't hit the top of the front guards on steep driveways as you turn in or when you have full opposite lock in a corner :lol: which even happened with the original tyres

In Switzerland, like here, top speed cruising not critical so the lower diameter not a problem. And with my 5 speed and 3.55 plus 2 the smaller diameter is perfect for both highway or back roads

cheers
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PostPost by: el-saturn » Sun Apr 20, 2014 11:42 am

.....................F1 is so boring, I went to my workshop; just added the pump and am fiddling around with
the oil plumbing - it'd be nice to find a hart dry sump diagram as it's different from my old pace one. the reason
i dont go to the 048s is simple: i don't overdo things too much: the LAW is everywhere around here. The kanton Appenzell, where we live has lots of passes etc.... so on monday you can read the polices' weekend statstics INCLUDING pole etc.. even with speculation regarding the highest fines. cheers sandy
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Sun Apr 20, 2014 11:50 am

You just need find roads where the corners are so tight you have fun inside the low Swiss speed limits I guess

cheers
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