Lotus Elan

Scrabblings and scribblings about & under the car

PostPost by: JJDraper » Sun Feb 19, 2012 9:12 pm

After last week's problem with the jammed starter pinion and finding the missing friction pad on the handbrake shoe, leading to a missed MOT test, I thought I would sort it all out this weekend. Much kinder weather than last week, so I spent some time doing a visual check of everything... Two additional problems found. My early transverse +2 exhaust was a new old stock, original (with chromed tailpipe) mild steel unit that I fitted at the resto nearly three years ago. Rotten! holes appearing and a poke with a finger was enough to make the holes bigger - another potential MOT failure. I do have one last NOS exhaust, complete with Lotus part number stickers, but I don't think I will ever use that - better to keep as a pattern. I used the mild steel unit as it had a much pleasanter exhaust note - not as harsh as the SS units I had fitted before. I had kept the old SS unit (which itself had previously been on the car for 2-3 years) so I pulled that out and fitted it. Before I did this I compared the two - quite a difference! The inlets were pretty much identical, but the tail pipes were quite different - as per the attached pics. The original one was longer and had a much smaller diameter - 30mm as opposed to 35mm on the SS unit. I could even put the original inside the SS pipe (see pic) demonstrating the difference. I wonder how much this affects the engine breathing? Was the longer pipe 'tuned'. Did the smaller diameter give greater back pressure? Or am I reading too much into the difference! Anyway, if you want an 'original' early +2, I don't think there are many mild steel silencers left now. I asked a well known Bromsgrove supplier and they hadn't seen a mild steel unit for decades. Does anyone know where to get them? I still think they sound better, but they don't last and I don't wish to waste another 'original' silencer (is it the last one??)!

The other problem I spotted was an oil leak on one of the diff output bearings. What is it about diffs and this car? They all seem to have incontinence from one orifice or another ever since I got the car, despite the best efforts of several folks... Another job for the spring.

The handbrake was an easy fix, with new pads and a good clean of all moving parts with copious amounts of WD40, followed by some spray grease. Another note was the difference between the NOS (not sure if Lotus or Jag) handbrake shoes and the replacements. The replacements seemed a much coarser casting and thicker at the opening of the slot bit making them harder to fit. Something else to watch for.

Anyway, hope you all had a good weekend as well.

keep driving & polishing.

Jeremy
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PostPost by: Roy Gillett » Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:00 am

Been poking about under mine as well in anticipation of MOT test (passed this morning!) .

I wonder if the different tail pipe lengths has anything to do with exhaust fumes being sucked back into the boot. This has been mentioned on this forum before and a longer tailpipe is deemed to be the answer. I too have changed tailboxes in the last year on my S130 (the last SS box got ripped off by a piece of Snowdonia lying in the middle of an impossibly narrow lane on last year's 3 Castles Welsh Trial) and the replacement genuine original Lotus mild steel unit (complete with Lotus part number stickers) has like yours a longer, narrower tailpipe. Though I have not yet done a long run with the new exhaust fitted, it does seem to me that the boot does not smell of exhaust fumes the way it used to. I wonder if Lotus in fact had it right and the after-market providers have caused the 'fumes in boot' problem by changing the specification?

By the way I have an advisory on the MOT on the softness of the rubber washers on my (oil-soaked) lower steering UJ. I seem to remember talk on this forum of a needle roller 'properly engineered' replacement for this part with no rubber to detreriorate in it. Can anyone enlighten me? I have given up trying to stop oil seeps in that area. I wellremember fitting the current one it seems like only 3 or 4 years ago but my maintenance records tell me it was in 2002!

Roy
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PostPost by: dlbutler » Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:42 am

Roy Gillett wrote:. . . By the way I have an advisory on the MOT on the softness of the rubber washers on my (oil-soaked) lower steering UJ. I seem to remember talk on this forum of a needle roller 'properly engineered' replacement for this part with no rubber to deteriorate in it. Can anyone enlighten me? I have given up trying to stop oil seeps in that area. I wellremember fitting the current one it seems like only 3 or 4 years ago but my maintenance records tell me it was in 2002!

Roy


Buy the lower steering u-joint for an Europa. It's the one you're looking for.
1969 Elan S4
1700 cc, Dave Bean #112 cams.
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PostPost by: Roy Gillett » Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:19 pm

Thanks,

I am on the case.

Roy
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PostPost by: JJDraper » Wed Feb 22, 2012 8:52 pm

The car passed the MOT with no advisories. Even the handbrake passed a good old fashioned road test with a decellerometer in a box... 35 whatever units they use. Main brakes nearly put the tester through the screen.

re steering column joint - get one, now! plenty available from various sources - Spyder, even Ebay. Around 20 - 30quid. Fit & forget, but may need a little jiggling about to fit it in situ.

elan-mods-f31/steering-column-universal-joint-t22211.html?

Happy days are here again - always slightly tense when MOT time comes around..

Jeremy
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