Lotus Elan

More steering lock on one side

PostPost by: EPC 394J » Fri Apr 08, 2016 9:20 am

Wonder if anyone can answer this quick question for me?

One of the issues I'm facing here is interference between the steering coupling and the bottom hose of my radiator. It seems I could only raise the radiator about 1/8" or probably less, before it's cap interferes with the bonnet! :( Not sure that's enough!

The coupling itself is a Spydercars unit. (It's listed as a Europa part?) I'm just wondering whether any of the other suppliers' similar parts are perhaps smaller?

(I guess it's not possible to buy a smaller radiator?) :D

Anybody know, or had good results with this particular problem?
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Fri Apr 08, 2016 10:12 am

There is not much clearance between the curly bottom hose and the steering column and coupling. You need to get the radiator in the right location and assuming the outlets are in the original correct position, then with the right hose, oriented correctly on the radiator outlet and front cover inlet it all fits..... just

The normal universal joint style coupling used actually is smaller in diameter than the orginal rubber bushed coupling and fits in easier.

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PostPost by: fattogatto » Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:15 pm

The coupler Ray at RD Enterprises sells (which I'm sure is a standard industry coupler) is quite a bit narrower without the large ring in the center.
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Sun Apr 17, 2016 6:25 pm

Can some kind soul, please take a look at these pictures and tell me why it isn't possible for me to have my rack clamps and rack flanges abutting each other? :roll:
image.jpg and

image.jpg and

Is it possible this isn't the correct rack for the Plus 2? It measures 12 7/8" (328mm) from flange to flange. (outer dimensions) My chassis is a Lotus chassis, so I presume any holes are correct.

Pictures of somebody else's arrangement might really help.

Very many thanks

Andy
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PostPost by: fattogatto » Sun Apr 17, 2016 10:05 pm

Image

Look at this mounting bracket and note the ears that protrude. Those ears will fit over the flange and secure the rack from moving that direction. The other bracket (which abuts its flange) will keep the rack from moving in the opposite direction. This is one way of mounting the rack. I've no idea which cars came with which mounting conventions.

That is the way my S3 rack is mounted.

One assumes there is not another set of holes under the shim, allowing the shim to be turned around, thus placing the bracket next to the flange?
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PostPost by: Craven » Sun Apr 17, 2016 11:09 pm

Andy,
If you look at the original fixing arrangement for a Triumph Spitfire http://www.rimmerbros.co.uk/Item--i-156024 http://www.rimmerbros.co.uk/Item--i-GRID005782 you will see the rack is clamped in place by U clamps holding shaped rubber blocks. Two things to notice, the rubber block has a protrusion on its lower edge that sits under the rack flange and the metal U shaped clamp that holds it in position, as the fixing is NOT central to the mounted pair. Seen in fattogatt pic. You should be able to visualise how, if your rack was reposition these original fixing would fit the mounting holes.
BTW, the small dot like protrusion seen between your clamp and the rack flange in your pic, is a small poly pressure pad that is normally kept in place by being under the rubber block, I think it?s some sort of anti-rattle device as it passes through the plain bearing in the rack outer tube pressing on the rack itself.
may help.
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Mon Apr 18, 2016 12:15 am

Really helpful guys. Much appreciated, and helps my understanding.

So looks like I have to make the decision as to whether to continue with these solid clamps, (accepting they will never abut the rack flanges, relying purely on clamping power) or return to the original rubber/poly fixings?

What are the pros and cons?

Incidentally, I do wonder if the witness marks on the rack, suggest the rack has already moved about 1cm towards the near side??? I'm wondering if this movement ALONE might explain the difference in lock available to me? It certainly seems to me at least to be in the correct direction? Just a thought?

Whichever way you look at it, the rack definitely isn't in the right place!

Many, many thanks
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Mon Apr 18, 2016 6:08 am

"What are the pros and cons?"
I had solid clamps on mine for a while...too harsh...bin them.

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PostPost by: elj221c » Mon Apr 18, 2016 7:09 pm

John's oppinion is not mine, of course!

:lol:

One of those 'make your own mind up' occasions.

You have heard both sides.......

Just to be clear, my car has very hard springing and restricted suspension movement so having solid rack mounts doesn't make any difference. You feel every matchstick and fag end!
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Mon Apr 18, 2016 8:27 pm

One of those 'make your own mind up' occasions.

Mmmmm

I have a pair of perfectly good solid clamps. I'd have to buy in new rubber ones.

Not to say it's right or wrong, but are you following my logic?! :D

I'm probably not sufficiently experienced in these matters to notice much of a difference?
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Tue Apr 19, 2016 10:12 pm

So. I've moved the rack!

It seems to have worked out pretty well so far. Though I ran out of time to actually drive it. Tomorrow hopefully!

I centralised the rack, which helped with clearance from the bottom radiator hose. However I think the most significant change was rotating the rack slightly. (upper surface to the rear) This was after the discovery that the flat bottoms of the flanges, (whilst never intended to be in contact with the chassis) were not in line with the chassis. This rotation acted to lower the column u/j, which is where my interference problems were. Perhaps from this picture you may be able to see, I now have a very comfortable gap between my u/j and my rad hose.
image.jpg and

Also, a pleasant secondary effect of moving the rack towards the driver's side, has also reduced my lock discrepancy. I now have something just over 1.4 turns to the left, and almost 1.3 turns to the right. I think I may try to live with that for a little while? Certainly until I have more time with the car!

Just need to centralise my steering wheel now! :D

Thanks for everyone's help. Really very much appreciated.

Andy
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Wed Apr 20, 2016 10:10 am

EPC 394J wrote:So. I've moved the rack!

..... This was after the discovery that the flat bottoms of the flanges, (whilst never intended to be in contact with the chassis) were not in line with the chassis........
Andy


I am not sure I understand this. My rack flanges sit on the shims so rack rotational orientation is fixed and parrallel to the mount surface and it cannot be rotated.

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PostPost by: Craven » Wed Apr 20, 2016 10:33 am

Hi,
I wrote :- Two things to notice, the rubber block has a protrusion on its lower edge that sits under the rack flange and the metal U shaped clamp that holds it in position.
When solid mounts are used the rack height centre line is maintained at the same pre shim level by adding the extra height to the blocks in the machining process. Bump steer shims may or may not extend as far as the flange on the rack. The rack flange against the chassis does not set the basic rack height.
May help.
Ron.
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Wed Apr 20, 2016 10:35 am

Hi Rohan

I'm very happy to be corrected, but here's what I THINK I understand:

Only the height of the rack centreline above the chassis mount is crucial to avoid bump steer? The mounts, whether solid or rubber, are designed to support the rack at the identical height. (Did I read somewhere 23mm?) This is where the shims come in, to correct any tiny chassis inaccuracies?

In the original design, a rubber 'foot' extended under the flanges. Clearly this is not the case with solid mounts, meaning there's a gap between the lower straight edge of the flange, and the chassis. This gap is where rotation of the rack can occur.

I don't think the flanges necessarily have to sit snugly on the shims? Because where would the rubber foot then go in the original design?

Cheers

Andy
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Wed Apr 20, 2016 11:35 am

You are correct
In the original mount the outer metal cover on the rubber clamps go down hard on the shims. The flange on the rubber is sandwiched between the shim and the flange on the rack to keep the rotational orientation correct, i did not explain this clearly.

You are needing now to do these detail adjustments as the person who designed the solid rack mounts did not understand all the detail functions of the original clamps and did not replicate them correctly to achieve correct longitudinal location and rotation orientation. In current manufacturing speak this is called "mistake proofing" ( or "Poke Yoke" in Japanese who most recently popularized the term). Modern cars do this to a large degree to the entire car to ensure assembly can only occur in the correct way, back in the sixties the concepts existed as in the case of the rack but were much less rigorously adopted for the entire car assembly. It is a pity the designers of the solid rack mounts have zero understanding of the concept as it was applied back in the sixties or now.

It is this poor design of replacement components that keeps much of the discussion on this forum going :lol:

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