Lotus Elan

Elan steering rack confusion ... help

PostPost by: HJF » Thu Jul 09, 2020 8:38 am

The rack on our Sprint is showing wear. Worse still, having removed it I find it is a badly modified Herald rack.

I have read Brian Buckland’s book and he states that the S4 rack has different lock stops to those on the S1 through to S3. What he says makes sense and I have found posts on this forum that support this.

However, when I have contacted most of the well known parts suppliers they do not seem to be aware of the differences and some have been very adamant there is only one rack specification that they supply for all cars. Indeed, one said they were aware of the Buckland book but we’re dubious about where the information re the rack had come from.

I am now feeling a bit confused about acquiring the correct rack for the car ... can anyone clarify for me?
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PostPost by: Mazzini » Thu Jul 09, 2020 9:44 am

https://www.kileyclinton.com

They should be able to help.
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PostPost by: Craven » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:00 am

Lotus reduced the lock to lock of the Triumph Herald steering rack on an Elan by fitting spacers on the inner rack. When the tyre size was changed from a 145 x 13 to 155 x 13 on later cars the length of the spacers was increased limiting the lock further as to avoid tyre contact with the body and anti roll bar.
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PostPost by: HJF » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:09 am

Craven wrote:Lotus reduced the lock to lock of the Triumph Herald steering rack on an Elan by fitting spacers on the inner rack. When the tyre size was changed from a 145 x 13 to 155 x 13 on later cars the length of the spacers was increased limiting the lock further as to avoid tyre contact with the body and anti roll bar.


Yes, that is my understanding but when spoken to several parts suppliers they didn’t recognise this to my surprise. Worried about who , where to order from because my confidence in some of these suppliers has taken a hit.
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PostPost by: Craven » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:18 am

In your position I would be more concerned that the new rack is fitted with the correct short track rod ends. Lotus rack has short rack ends; the standard Triumph ones cannot be modified as the thread is a rolled thread and cannot the lengthened.
It’s likely a new rack will have the later stops being a more universal unit.
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PostPost by: oldelanman » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:25 am

HJF wrote:
Craven wrote:Lotus reduced the lock to lock of the Triumph Herald steering rack on an Elan by fitting spacers on the inner rack. When the tyre size was changed from a 145 x 13 to 155 x 13 on later cars the length of the spacers was increased limiting the lock further as to avoid tyre contact with the body and anti roll bar.


Yes, that is my understanding but when spoken to several parts suppliers they didn’t recognise this to my surprise. Worried about who , where to order from because my confidence in some of these suppliers has taken a hit.


SJ Sportscars certainly recognise the difference, they list both S4 and S1-3 racks and mention the different spacers in the Hints and Tips column of their parts list.

https://www.sjsportscars.com/parts-and- ... rchresults
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PostPost by: HJF » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:37 am

oldelanman wrote:
HJF wrote:
Craven wrote:Lotus reduced the lock to lock of the Triumph Herald steering rack on an Elan by fitting spacers on the inner rack. When the tyre size was changed from a 145 x 13 to 155 x 13 on later cars the length of the spacers was increased limiting the lock further as to avoid tyre contact with the body and anti roll bar.


Yes, that is my understanding but when spoken to several parts suppliers they didn’t recognise this to my surprise. Worried about who , where to order from because my confidence in some of these suppliers has taken a hit.


SJ Sportscars certainly recognise the difference, they list both S4 and S1-3 racks and mention the different spacers in the Hints and Tips column of their parts list.

https://www.sjsportscars.com/parts-and- ... rchresults


Yes, have spoken to them and they are very helpful and are the only folk I have spoken to who seem to understand this. Will more than likely be going to them for this. Only concern is that they need my rack to refurbish and if it is good enough for them to use or not. Some suppliers offer an outright purchase without exchange but they couldn’t give me a proper story as to what spacers these racks would be fitted with.
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PostPost by: HJF » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:40 am

Craven wrote:In your position I would be more concerned that the new rack is fitted with the correct short track rod ends. Lotus rack has short rack ends; the standard Triumph ones cannot be modified as the thread is a rolled thread and cannot the lengthened.
It’s likely a new rack will have the later stops being a more universal unit.


Yes, the rack I have removed has Herald rods hacksawed down!!!
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PostPost by: Craven » Thu Jul 09, 2020 11:56 am

Ok, this is the part that is special to Lotus, I doubt if this has been remade. Probably why they want your old rack.
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PostPost by: bitsobrits » Thu Jul 09, 2020 12:40 pm

The Lotus specific track rod ends are available from LotusMarques.com (Australia).
Steve

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Formerly:
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Thu Jul 09, 2020 1:22 pm

If you have a rack capable of refurbishment then go direct to kileyclinton - it's my understanding that they supply Matty (maybe others?) and when you compare prices there's an incentive to go direct!
Rather depends where you live whether you can visit to get an opinion on your rack.
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PostPost by: HJF » Thu Jul 09, 2020 1:23 pm

Mazzini wrote:https://www.kileyclinton.com

They should be able to help.


Brilliant, thanks.

Just phoned them.

Really good, know what they are doing. Will be able to build me a rack to suit the S4 / Sprint spec.. looks like a solution.
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PostPost by: pharriso » Thu Jul 09, 2020 1:25 pm

Mazzini wrote:https://www.kileyclinton.com

They should be able to help.


That's interesting, their main website is https://steering-racks.co.uk/
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PostPost by: Andrewelan » Thu Jul 09, 2020 1:27 pm

Kiley-Clinton in Birmingham can also supply the correct track rods. My +2 rack is there just now and has the extension pieces added to adjust to the wider track, Roger Clinton offered me the one piece units they make. (as well as changing the pinion to speed the rack a little)

They are the best in the UK and do racks for well know Lotus specialists as well as JLR heritage and many others.

The chap 'booking in' a rack ahead of me was having them work on his Metro 6R4 rack....I knew I was in good hands
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Thu Jul 09, 2020 2:12 pm

They did mine a few years ago and despite having to put in a new rack as mine was bent they were very good value - might say 'cheap' compared to others.

At the time they were offering a 'while you wait' service by appointment - don't suppose they do now.
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