Lotus Elan

Plus 2 wheels

PostPost by: Robbie693 » Wed May 27, 2015 11:49 pm

Oh no. And here was me thinking I would get around to buying another pair at some point! Ooops.

Better make sure I keep the spares then.

Cheers for the info
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PostPost by: Dieschelan » Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:38 pm

I'm restoring the wheels. But I have a question: the outer side of the wheel the silver part is painted or polish?
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PostPost by: mbell » Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:45 pm

Dieschelan wrote:I'm restoring the wheels. But I have a question: the outer side of the wheel the silver part is painted or polish?


Mine have had lacquer applied over the black and silver area's. Restored rather than original thou.
'73 +2 130/5 RHD, now on the road and very slowly rolling though a "restoration"
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PostPost by: Dieschelan » Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:56 pm

The problem is if you appy lacquer in the silver part in few time it will be white (alu corrosion)
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Tue Nov 24, 2015 11:52 pm

The original finish was polished rather than painted. I don't know if they were lacquered originally but the reproduction ones certainly are/were. And yes they start to corrode!

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PostPost by: NedK » Thu Dec 10, 2015 9:22 pm

Hello
Is there a way of identifying whether alloys are original Lotus or more modern copies?
I believe I have an unused original set but it would be good to know either way.
Thanks
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Fri Dec 11, 2015 12:59 am

The reproduction ones are very accurate but they did incorporate an improvement over the originals in that the wheel wells were re-designed. Difficult to tell with tyre on but the main indication is that the tyre sits closer to the the rim on the repro wheels - unlike the originals which protruded slightly (see first post) and were a bugger to fit a tyre to.

You may be able to differentiate by the thrust ring for the wheel spinner/nut - the reproductions had a black powder coated ring that was glued in place (at least they were on mine) and are a bit thicker than the original, aluminium(?) rings.

Hope this helps

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PostPost by: theelanman » Fri Dec 11, 2015 8:41 am

I have original wheels and the rubber sits bang up to the edge/lip.......but yes the tyre fitter has shredded tyres whilst trying to fit them...........
Ive even had a couple of instances where they were fitted and over a couple of week a bulge appeared in the side wall......on interrogation it was found that the inner steel band had been shredded whilst it was fitted as it was that tight.....
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Fri Dec 11, 2015 10:15 am

Gareth - is that with 165/80 tyres?
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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Sat Dec 12, 2015 6:29 am

Hope it's alright for me to jump in before Gareth . . .

On a related note, I recently stripped the tires off my factory original steel Plus 2S wheels. The car is a February 1970 unit and presumably the wheels from around then, too.

Did the job myself, on a conventional tire machine and wow . . . they did NOT want to come off. More specifically, the "bead" of the tire was so tight on the rim's seat that it seemed welded on. In other words, the Kuhmo tires' inner diameter was too small for the rim. To break the bead (slide the bead off the seat of the rim and into the drop center), I had to repeatedly reuse the machine's bead breaker and rotate the tire around to different positions (normally never necessary) and the machine wanted to simply fold over the sidewall of the tire instead of sliding the bead off. :shock:

Personally never seen anything like it. Which leads me to believe that Lotus wheels of this period have bead seat diameters that are a little oversized. If my wheels where the cast ones, I would definitely put them on a lathe and take off just a little to ease this problem. As it is, I'm not sure the steel is of sufficient thickness to safely take off enough material to make a difference.

Question is: are there more owners with similar experiences? Perhaps the tire mounters are not telling owners about the problem with oversized rim diameters . . . ? And interesting to see that at least some of the cast Lotus wheels seem to have exactly the same issue.

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PostPost by: el torro » Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:57 pm

My 130/5 wheels had inner tubes fitted , is it safe to put tyres on without them fitted?
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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Wed Dec 23, 2015 11:38 pm

I would think very few of us are running inner tubes in Elan steel wheels.

The rim is one piece welded; the only place that can leak is at the rivets and riveting is pretty common practice in steel wheel construction.

Mine have never had tubes and did not leak at all, not even slowly over a year or more.

Beyond that, most tires available today are made for tubeless operation. Inner tubes significantly raise the operating temperature of the tire and significantly lower the top speed of the tire.

IMHO . . . YMMV . . . :mrgreen:

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PostPost by: el torro » Thu Dec 24, 2015 7:09 am

Should have said it was knock on wheels ,alloy ones that had inner tubes in them
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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Thu Dec 24, 2015 7:20 am

Occasionally you hear of cast wheels which are a little too porous. Don't know if that's the case with original Lotus cast wheels.

Always wondered if a good coat of something on the inside of the rim of porous cast wheels would be sufficient to make them seal well . . . don't know, but would make sense.

I would put on tires without inner tubes and find out. If in doubt, let them sit for a few weeks and observe their pressure.
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Thu Dec 24, 2015 10:36 am

My car came to me with tubes fitted (Alloy wheels) and when I last changed the tyres I kept them. When I bought a pair of new reproduction alloys I still kept the tubes in when I had the tyres swapped over, partly because the fitter managed to tear a bit of rubber off the bead! :roll:

This was before I read about tubes in tubeless tyres could give problems, but I haven't experienced any issues yet. When I next change tyres I will probably go tubeless but will keep them just incase. I heard that tubes are a bit difficult to get nowadays, though I'm not sure how true this is.
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