Lotus Elan

spring slips off perch

PostPost by: bulfin » Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:59 pm

Hi All,

1969 Elan S4 DHC (stock suspension as far as I can tell)

Is it possible/likely that the rear spring slips into the inner part of the perch; see attempt at picture below

1.................1
1_a_........__1 ignore the dots - they are just there to keep the right spacing
.....1__b_1

Normally the end of the spring sits on the perch at a. Could at least part of it slip down into b?
Here is the problem - after some spirited driving with my son (200lbs) in the right hand seat, the outer fender lip started rubbing the tire. THere may have been a thunk just before. After stopping there was no clearance where before there was a couple of inches. I lifted at the fendr well and the right gap was restored and pushing the car down did not cause the body to drop. However it dropped as soon as I drove it again with just me in the car. I have taken the damper and spring off and both seem ok. The only explanation I can think of is that the sping is dropping down into the perch and getting caught there.

Anyone got any theories, suggestions or thoughts.

Thanks

Bob
Auburn, AL USA
Bob Bulfin
1969 Elan S4 DHC
Mobile, AL USA
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Mon Dec 08, 2014 10:22 pm

Hi Bob

There is only a small clearance between the standard rear spring and the outer lips on the spring perches top and bottom so it should not be possible for the spring to move into the recess. Have smaller diameter springs been fitted to the standard spring perches?

Have you checked your Lotocones at the top to make sure the rubber in them has not collapsed? This could cause a similar problem and that pulling up the car would reset them to normal height but they then collapse again when used.

cheers
Rohan
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PostPost by: bulfin » Wed Dec 10, 2014 3:56 am

Rohan,

As always, you are willing to help - thank you.

The springs are the big ones. Installing 2.5" springs is on my wish list.

I first checked the lotocones and they seemed ok; not soft or cracked - the pipe inside is firm in the rubber. I will look at them again, as well as the bump stop tomorrow if it is above 40 degrees in my garage - lived in the desert too long to brave the cold.

I know it is hard to believe the spring could slip in the perch, but I am grasping at straws.

Bob
Bob Bulfin
1969 Elan S4 DHC
Mobile, AL USA
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Wed Dec 10, 2014 4:49 am

Potentially you may have a problem with the opposite side front suspension unit that may be jamming in an "up" position and holding the opposite rear corner down?

What sort of drive shafts do you have - maybe these are locking up some how and holding the suspension low

Is it possible to take off the wheel and reproduce the symptoms of it sticking by jacking under the suspension to move it up and down?

Like you I am grasping at straws also to explain

cheers
Rohan
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PostPost by: bulfin » Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:42 pm

You may be on to something with the right front. It is very easy to bounce while the left is very hard. With the rear up in the air it may affect it though. Now I need to decide if I want to reassemble the rear, lower it and then play with the front. Wish it warm up some.

Thanks,

Bob
Bob Bulfin
1969 Elan S4 DHC
Mobile, AL USA
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