Lotus Elan

Rear shock absorbers

PostPost by: davidc » Fri Jul 15, 2016 9:27 am

Trying to figure if my rear suspension is right.

Car seems awfully easy to push down and very light.

It doesn't spring back up and bounce but seems very soft for a sports car.

Is this just due to the lightness of the car or could my shocks be past there best?

Front takes a lot more effort to push down.

Any way of telling or testing how it should be?

David
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:11 pm

The elan spring rates are low and the shock setting soft to match. All this works with the light weight to give the handling and ride balance that Lotus alone captured in sports cars. Yes its different from most other cars.

Is you're car "right" versus the original Lotus design ??? That's a more difficult question to answer and also complicated by what is "right" now given changes in tyres and road use since the 1960's and also your personal preferences

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PostPost by: davidc » Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:47 pm

Just wasn't sure if dampers had failed due to lack of resistance when pushing down compared to front.

Don't want to get off stands and find rear wheels bouncing uncontrollably when I finally get it on the road.

There are no signs of leaks from dampers so I'll just take it that it is due to lightness of rear end

It's a +2 130/5 1973 by the way.
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:54 pm

I have a 73 Plus 2S 130/5 and yes it feels soft in the rear versus the front. I would not worry about it unless you feel the handling is not sweet and stable.

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PostPost by: TroonSprint » Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:58 pm

The damper shouldn't resist the initial movement of pushing down or the wheel hitting a bump. What the damper should do is prevent the spring from continuing to oscillate once it recovers from the compression. That's in the ideal world. Of course the damper does add to the initial resistance of the spring compression but not too much. The principal reason why your car is easy to push down at the rear and harder at the front is due to the spring rates. It is normal on most cars to have stiffer springs on the front than on the rear. I suspect your springs and dampers are fine.
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PostPost by: davidc » Fri Jul 15, 2016 2:28 pm

Thanks for reassuring me. :D
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PostPost by: weddingcarclive » Sat Jul 16, 2016 2:54 pm

I have had experience of shocks either way, some when pressing being hard to push down and some being slow to return, it depends on manufacturers design, in fact what you are experiencing will give a softer ride being easy on the down stroke and slowly returning, both systems will do the same job of stopping the road wheels bouncing uncontrollably, get it off the stands as fast as possible and down the road !!! Enjoy
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