Lotus Elan

Well I've done it now!

PostPost by: John Larkin » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:12 pm

Rich135 wrote: I can even smell my car in my dressing room above the garage, which I like, but my wife... not so much :lol:


I thought I was the only one with this "car" smell problem emanating from the garage, and my wife dislikes it also. I take great comfort from knowing there is another sufferer out there! I've got away with it for fifteen years. My wife is very forgiving, God bless her.

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1967 S3SE FHC, 1974 Rover P6B, 1949 Lancia Aprilia
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PostPost by: Quart Meg Miles » Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:49 pm

I devised an one-way vent for the S130 which did not obstruct petrol filling, though I never built it, but a clue to its operation comes from my revelation that table-tennis balls do not dissolve or distort in petrol.
Meg

26/4088 1965 S1½ Old and scruffy but in perfect working order; the car too.
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PostPost by: Spyder fan » Fri Oct 14, 2016 7:27 am

It's good to know you are having fun already!

I think it's a great car that just needs shaking down for a few hundred miles as I mentioned the other day, it's been restored over a long period and only completed very recently and not driven since. There are bound to be loads of niggles that you can fix easily once you have banished the starting and gear lever gremlins.

Please don't change the roof colour, it's probably the only car I can park my S4 next to and think my colour scheme is subdued :D
Kindest regards

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PostPost by: rgh0 » Fri Oct 14, 2016 8:36 am

Because the plus 2 tank is high in the rear fuel will flow under gravity to the carbs if the tank is full. As the fuel evaporates in the carb bowls more fuel comes in and evaporates also continuing to add to the smell in the garage.

Plug the vents with a restriction, and put in a shut off valve on the tank line to the fuel pump and the fuel smell will go away.

cheers
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PostPost by: vincereynard » Fri Oct 14, 2016 11:28 am

Sadly it still did not start with a recharged battery. Tried the Wilkins method of full choke - a few kicks but nothing useful. Left it half an hour. Tried the 2 pumps - nothing.

Got out and walked away. **** the useless bloody thing! Where did I put those matches?
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Fri Oct 14, 2016 11:32 am

change the plugs - or at least take them out and clean them

fuel --- air --- spark --- mix it and timing it all right --- then they run.

Same for any internal combustion engine new or old

cheers
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Fri Oct 14, 2016 11:33 am

Clean the plugs,no choke,two pumps and full throttle should do it...

John :wink:

If it doesn't start then, I'll take it off your hands for ?50:00......
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PostPost by: KevJ+2 » Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:11 pm

And check the glove box for the hidden switch :mrgreen:
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PostPost by: davidc » Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:43 pm

from your first post it sounds like it has been running?

how well did it start then?

whats changed since? might sound daft but are you out of fuel? :oops:
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PostPost by: vincereynard » Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:51 pm

I appreciate what you are talking about chaps. There seems no rime or reason for it. It started on a cold morning when I picked it up. Fired up fine to shift it on the recovery vehicle. Started straight away, twice, when I was changing the ***** gearlever.

Then when all is ready for a trial run - nope!

Cleaned the plugs on a gas ring in the time honoured manner, spun it over with a wide throttle to clear the cylinders. Loosened a fuel pipe/carb connection to check fuel delivery.

Anyway its all smarty electronics again. How does one check ignition timing with these. Plus, with an unleaded head, what should it be? It does fire and pop so it's not the immobiliser.

Needs a shake down following its rebuild? Tricky when the toad will not even start.
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PostPost by: Orsom Weels » Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:51 pm

With Dellorto carb's, I have found full choke & NO pumps of the accelerator gives best results on a cold engine.
If it had been starting ok & now won't, as has already been asked, what's changed ? Just needs some methodical diagnosis. You've checked for fuel delivery at the carb union, is it getting in to the float chamber ? There are filters in both carb's & it wouldn't be the first time a needle valve had stuck, worth a look. Failing that, depending on what "smarty electronics" you have, there will be a method of setting the timing for a basic starting point, an internet search should find you that information. After that you need a strobe light, but you should be able to ascertain whether something has slipped/ moved enough to throw the timing out enough to cause your non-starting, aim for 10-12 degrees, it should run ok at that. If all looks good, check the condition of plug leads, distributor cap, rotor arm etc & perhaps try a new set of plugs, if they have got very wet they sometimes short the centre electrode out through the porcelain & won't throw a spark under compression. Heating & drying them just doesn't seem to work. If you have the original Lotus glove box switch immobiliser, the contacts in the switch get bad & could cause poor voltage to the ignition, which could upset some electronic conversions, causing your popping & banging, so don't rule it out just yet.
It'll almost certainly turn out to be something silly & I'm sure you'll get it sorted. As Rohan says, fuel mixed with air given a spark at roughly the right time will go bang & it will run :D
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PostPost by: denicholls2 » Fri Oct 14, 2016 1:59 pm

As it happens the yellow pig refuses to start now, so the colour of the roof may be the best way of finding the bas***d when I bury it! On the other hand Nov 5th is soon.

Less than I week and I wonder why I bothered.


Ah, Lotus owner's remorse.

Before you start messing with timing, do the simple things as Rohan notes. The fuel in your tank could be a decade old, perhaps? Anyway, get a can of starting fluid, spray it in the throats, get in and push the pedal to the glassfiber (do not pump) and crank. That will tell you all you need to know about spark/timing/electronics. (My money is not on spark or electronics even though immobilisers are known for being too effective.).

If it continues running OK after it is started, identify whether you might have too many ballast resistors and if they are bypassed while starting. A lot of cars with separate ballast resistors fall prey to replacement coils with internal resistors, hence double a good idea, which in this case is not one.
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PostPost by: vincereynard » Fri Oct 14, 2016 3:22 pm

denicholls2 wrote:Ah, Lotus owner's remorse.


You've got that right!

I've taken the airbox off and fuel squirting merrily.

Ignition is NEW - Lucas 23D electronic + sports coil. New magnacor leads . NGK iridium plugs.

I thought I had the bast**d. One of the clips was off the distributor. Aha! Clipped it back on but the
Toad deceived yet again. No difference.

Try just the choke, as advised by Mr Wilkins and others - a kick or two then nowt.

So what is it a couple of pumps as with Weber or choke only? Not that it matters much in my case.
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Fri Oct 14, 2016 3:37 pm

I've never used a choke with twin webers, even in the midle of winter when I used to keep my Elan on the street outside the house. Just a couple of pumps, then hold the pedal down a tad.

Check that the distributor is firmly held by it's clamp. I had that problem with my Escort Twincam, which would start perfectly one day, run very well, then fail to start the next day as the distributor had moved...and the timing was then off of course.

If it is loose, don't just tighten it up, but check that it hasn't been over-tightened in the past and cracked the distributor body.
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PostPost by: vincereynard » Fri Oct 14, 2016 5:34 pm

I'm beginning to wonder if it may have something to do with the aftermarket immobiliser the PO had fitted. He was the sort of chap who simply paid the bills without bothering with detail. Hence he has no clue about what model or where the thing is. Would these things allow a kick but not to run properly?

Its from www.hawkcaralarm.com and has a code MPT1340WT on the fob. Then again maybe that is only the central locking because there is another attachment on the key ring that the PO maintains has to be there to allow it to start. Frankly, at this point, anythings worth a try.

Simple thing would be to stick a plug on a plug lead and see if I get any spark I suppose. Hopefully it will not hurt the electronics. Then, if not, try a hot wire straight from the solenoid?
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