Lotus Elan

Veritable +2 with long legs

PostPost by: gordonlund » Fri Feb 02, 2007 6:29 pm

Hello everyone. If you have been looking at LotusElan.net you will have seen my odd posting or two. I have had my current Elan +2 since 1981. A bog std 1968 plain old +2. It is currently on it's 3rd chassis (galvanised) and has covered well onto 250,00 miles. I sold the car in 99 and bought it back again in 04. My family grew up in that car so I had a certain attachment to it. An Elan Sprint (the Custard side of the equation, being yellow over white) was written off after a 4 year extensive rebuild to concourse standard. The +2 does not get used as much these days but still gets over to France at least once a year. We did 2,500 trouble free French miles in 06 and will be doing the same in 07.

I am about to fit a 3.54 diff from an Escort Mexico before my next trip. Has enyone done this transplant and what should I expect in terms of more relaxed cruising, economy, cut in acceleration etc?
Attachments
P5290187a.JPG and
"Rhubarb" following S2 Europa over Millau Viaduct Southern France 06
P4090015a.JPG and
"Rhubarb" relaxing in the Lakes
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PostPost by: mcclelland » Fri Feb 02, 2007 6:50 pm

Gordon,
my advise is to get a move on and stop wasting time if you want to get to Donningtonand and then over here for your holls!!! George...
George McC.
1968 S4 Elan dhc.(now sold)
1973 Plus2 S130/5
1994 Elan M100 S2
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PostPost by: gordonlund » Fri Feb 02, 2007 7:18 pm

Thanks George,

I am going to fit another set of Rotoflexes before we go on hols just to be sure, current ones are nearly 5 years old. Reworked Mexico diff (3.54)is all ready to go in as long as people don't put me off doing it. The 3.55 ford diff was an option at the time but used bigger teeth (fewer). The input flanges are the same. I checked this as Ford fitted 3 differant sizes of input flanges depending on model, (Escort/Cortina etc)

I'm procrastinating again arn't I. Where's the Jubilee Clips!!!

Give my love to Tracy & family and we will see you at Donington, then La Belle France Can't wait.
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PostPost by: elans3 » Fri Feb 02, 2007 10:56 pm

Gordon,
My last Baby Elan S3 had both the 3.55 diff, coupled together with the very close ratio gearbox, (the bullet ratios with a very high first gear). This made for very interesting speeds in gears, 55 mph in first, 75 in 2nd, and so on. Amazingly it was still easy to get off the line, and offered much more relaxed cruising.
I loved it so much, I've bought a 3.54, and a bullet ratio'd box to put in the current S3.
It was apparently very rare to have this combination, and had been wisely specified by the original owner on buying the car new. It was a very late S3, 67 F regd.
I would definitely put the diff in Rhubarb.......
Regards
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PostPost by: gordonlund » Fri Feb 02, 2007 11:37 pm

Thanks Elans3. Encouraging methinks.

Anyone out there done the same on the heavier +2?

I am taking this option against fitting a five speed box because of the unbeatable application of the Ford 4 speed three rail box. A real dream to drive. Makes modern boxes feel like stiring porridge. If you want steering and handling on the seat of your pants the bullit box compliments the ensemble. Any thoughts on that one anyone?
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PostPost by: alaric » Sat Feb 03, 2007 9:57 am

Gordon,

I went for a T9 box myself, but can't comment on how it drives as I'm still waiting for the car to come back from the restorer's.

I'm just posting a new thread on breakdown cover for traveling in france and the likes, which I would be interested to hear people's views on. I didn't want to put it here as this is your thread and not really on that subject...

Sean.
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PostPost by: elans3 » Sat Feb 03, 2007 12:07 pm

Gordon,
I wouldn't worry about the application in the +2 for the fact that it is heavier, this combination was offered on the early A bracket Mk 1 Lotus Cortina, which was significantly heavier than the +2.
I have a friend that used to have one, with this combination, and it was no problem. He used to get very similar speeds in the gears to my earlier S3 too,
Regards
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PostPost by: gerrym » Sat Feb 03, 2007 2:09 pm

Gordon, I have a 3.54 ratio but hav'nt as yet fitted, will need to change over input flange etc. Who are you entrusting the diff build to resetting up pinion pre-load etc

Gerry M
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PostPost by: Hamish Coutts » Sat Feb 03, 2007 6:42 pm

Gordon,

The PO of my +2 S130 had a 3.55 diff fitted (to replace the existing 3.75? one).

The standard gearbox is good for 40+ mph in 1st on 165 13 tyres. Obviously it's not too hot at traffic light GPs but I'm happy with it.

Cruising is also OK and the few long trips I've done up to the north of Scotland have been nice and relaxed. 8) I've found 3rd gear fab for some of these long drifting corners on the road to SKYE.

Going up there again next weekend - can't wait :D

Hamish.
"One day I'll finish the restoration - honest, darling, just a few more years....."
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PostPost by: gordonlund » Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:51 am

Gerry,

I entrust all my gearbox and diff rebuilds to a guy called Paul Stephenson of Stephenson Transmissions Ltd of Preston His number is 01772 723325 e mail: [email protected] .com

He has just done my 3.54 diff as well as doing one for a friend with an Elan Sprint.

He rebuilt my Sprint 4 speed box a few years ago to my complete satisfaction.

Hamish, (sorry I spelt your name wrong, dislexic keyboard***)

The +2 and Sprint took the A9 it their stride, working in Northern Scotland for some time, the Berridale Brays take some beating.




Gordon
Last edited by gordonlund on Mon Feb 12, 2007 9:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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PostPost by: Hamish Coutts » Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:18 pm

Hey Gordon,

Berridale Brays - you got me there. I always thought that the most scarey road was the one through the 'pass of the cattle' on the way to Applecross from Torridon.

Where about are the Beridale Brays?

Regards,

Hamish.
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PostPost by: gordonlund » Mon Feb 05, 2007 9:52 pm

Hamish,

Berriedale is just south of Dunbeath, north of Brora on the A9 about 50 miles north of Inverness. Look at a map of Caithness & Sutherland for Helmsdale (real highland games country) & Ord of Caithness. One day the authorities will build a big bridge over it and spoil the road for all except hgvs, caravans and motor homes. Many a Lotus owner who frequents this road complains whenever more road improvements straighten out the hairpins.

Gordon
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Tue Feb 06, 2007 4:49 am

Hello Gordon,
I emailed your Millau Viaduct picture to my autonut friends, entitled it " +2 chases Europa into the future. " What a great picture, especially for a LHD owner!
Thanks, Eric
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PostPost by: Hamish Coutts » Tue Feb 06, 2007 12:57 pm

Thanks Gordon,

That's one of the few parts of Scotland I don't know very well. I always find the pull of the northwest (i.e. Ullapool & Achiltibuie) too strong to resist. Must go there this Spring.

Othered favoured driving areas are Arran and the Eastern/Central Scottish borders. Fab driving country. 8)

Hamish.
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PostPost by: gordonlund » Tue Feb 06, 2007 6:55 pm

Eric,

Sorry to disappoint but the picture on the bridge was taken by my wife Johanna from the passenger seat.

We English soon learn to drive on the "wrong" side of the road. We have to re-educate ourselves on returning to Blitey to drive on the left. It can be strange at times.

Tell that to the German trucker who wrote off my Elan Sprint on an English motorway. Sat up in the Gods on the left hand side of his cab, he said he never saw me after he had bounced me into the motorway side crash barrier (Armco)

Gordon
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