Lotus Elan

Bushes and other rubber parts

PostPost by: jono » Wed Mar 21, 2018 9:04 am

Thanks Dave, will check them out - need a full front bush set to replace the crappy polybushes!

Jon
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PostPost by: miked » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:04 pm

Jon, just looked at their web site. It would be nice to think that you dont end up were you started with them already being a supplier of some of the crappy ones. Mind you, saying that if you put some untrained guy in the supply chain who picks something that he thinks is right...... then you have fun.
I used to select antivibration mounts for diesel generators. I spent time finding the centre of gravity, weight per point and isolation required which dictated how much they sunk. Nice little exercise especially if the set was in a hospital under a revovery room. In my absence and with some management changes people would pick them from a photo in a catalogue.
Not good seeing a v16 wanting to walk or dance.
So maybe there had been some incorrect specification going on. Fingers crossed. As J Clegg once said to me, we have thrown better old ones away fitting crappy new ones. Over the last 20 years i have had no luck with rubber bushes. My opinion of decent poly is that with care and corect washers there is no problem with front bones. Rear outer are worst due to space and landing surface. Rear inner can be destroyed by inaccuracy of A frames and also chassis mounts due to same reason. I know in the past we have done this to death but point side loading will chew up the inner rears if the spacing is wrong.
In an old post of mine i spent hours bespoke fitting new A frames to a new chassis to equalise loading. Scale drawing and hours of filing. Ceejay followed up with his great advice. In the fullnes of time i will be doing what he says.
Whilst rubber bushes are forgiving when shoving in the rear A frame to the chassis they will still be under stress if there are inaccuracy in the components. Just pointing this out having been astounded when offering A frames up to a chassis without bushes to see clearance.

My two pennies worth having run, rubber, 3 types of poly and also rose joints.

Mike :)
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PostPost by: jono » Wed Mar 21, 2018 1:24 pm

Hi Mike,

We should have discussed this yesterday :D

None of my polys wore well, and that includes the trunnion polys I fitted from Sue (now reverted to nylon)

What's happened is they have all worn egg shaped on the crush tube. I fitted new metalastics on the back well before our NC500 trip and they are still good.

Just noticed the fronts are niow all slack too :(

Perhaps it the lardy plus 2 and the way I drive it but I expected more from them certainly after only 10k miles?
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PostPost by: pauljones » Wed Mar 21, 2018 2:50 pm

If i may,
Only yesterday i spoke to Sue to get other bits. Again i asked the simple question with reference to bushes.
She did say that Mick sourced the poly because the rubber just wasnt up to standard, even way back.
I think poly work out to be 50% more expensive. I would expect them to last longer.
Im still not sure which direction ill go but as i only do 1000miles a year in mine i guess ill have 10 years usage.
Kick the tyres and light them fires...!!!!!!!
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PostPost by: miked » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:07 pm

Hi Jon,

True, should have done. I had my trunnion ones chew up on the Elan in no time at all, nothing wrong with original triumph ones. I see no advantage in this position. In fact i think that Canley classics make this point on their web site.
I think you hit on a valid point about the difference between an Elan and Plus 2 with the weight plus maybe the wishbone length gives more strain. Whilst my Plus 2 survives on Autobush i did drive it like Miss Daisy. Usually me and wife on a trip. Could not bring myself to push it much apart from bigger A roads. Having driven the small Elan the Plus 2 felt like a limo. So I think i am probably giving some support to the fact that they are not completely useless. I stripped the Plus 2 back many times for different maintenance tasks and re lubed them. No signifcant damage.
Practically then i suppose we could question the same material and suitabiliy across two diferent weights of vehicle. Perhaps worth feedback to the manufacturer.

Also the type of duty, sports or fast road etc. I dont think i will be fully happy with the Zetec Elan rear outers until i do what Ceejay recommends. Worst duty in my opinion. Closely followed by the inner ones. But I will keep a very close eye on all of them.
Usual Elan quandary, no such thing a a complete suit all answer.


Cheers Mike :D
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PostPost by: JonB » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:14 pm

Sue said the same to me re her polys, after one of the rubber bushes she'd supplied failed as I was fitting it.

Obviously not her fault and she replaced it immediately, but it is worrying as I have another 15 on the car, all from Sue. The problem is there are so many opinions about this that it is hard to get a definitive answer. I was warned off poly bushes by another member whose car I went to see before I bought mine - he said they'd gone oval in no time which explained why all his bushes were (replaced) rubber. So that discussion has lead me to ignore polys, and also because previously I thought people fitted them for performance reasons (better handling at the expense of a rougher ride); whereas I wanted to experience the car as standard, because it was already legendary in the handling stakes - supposedly.

Now, we all know bushes are still present in modern cars and they do last the course (often under harsher conditions - heavier cars with more performance). So how come our classics end up with dross, when manufacturers can still make decent stuff?
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PostPost by: jono » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:40 pm

That's a very interesting question and one I've pondered myself.

I recall changing the front wishbone bushes on my old Subaru Legacy a few years back - they are exactly the same principal as the Lotus Melastic bushes, though larger - rubber bonded between two metal sleeves and under twisting and lateral forces on a much heavier car.

It had done over 100k miles and when I got them off they were still entirely serviecable, the rubber had gone a little soft but that was all, no bond failure.
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PostPost by: JonB » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:45 pm

So now the question - How can we repair bushes that fail early due to the rubber / metal bond coming loose? What adhesives might we use?
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PostPost by: miked » Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:02 pm

Re Autobush, in particular. I just rang the UK supplier (Doug). He would be interested in feedback through the supplier they were purchased from. Or direct back to him if supplied direct with any problems encountered. These are now supplied by the leading Classic Lotus suppliers in additon to their own site. The site shows 2 years warranty. I asked his permission to post about feedback of their product.

Mike :D
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