Lotus Elan

Which carbs ?

PostPost by: persimmon » Thu Jul 21, 2022 2:17 pm

Hi , I`ve been on this site for years but still haven`t got round to actually buying a Lotus yet . Went to have a look at one recently , but it had Weber carbs and wouldn`t start .
I have heard that Webers can be difficult / expensive to tune . Would I be better looking for a car with Strombergs . I have 175 CD s on my other car , and they seem fairly straightforward .

Thanks
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PostPost by: Slowtus » Thu Jul 21, 2022 3:15 pm

persimmon wrote:Hi , I`ve been on this site for years but still haven`t got round to actually buying a Lotus yet . Went to have a look at one recently , but it had Weber carbs and wouldn`t start .
I have heard that Webers can be difficult / expensive to tune . Would I be better looking for a car with Strombergs . I have 175 CD s on my other car , and they seem fairly straightforward .

Thanks


Both types of carbs work equally well. Webers are a bit more complex but they do the job, look right and sound right so unless someone has been fiddling with the ones on the car you saw, should be fine.

And the non-starting issue may not be related to the carbs, regardless of the type they are.
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PostPost by: alanr » Thu Jul 21, 2022 3:37 pm

Personally I would prefer a car to have Webers or Dellorto's fitted but then that is just me.
I wouldn't concern yourself too much though about the carbs, they can be soon sorted whatever make is fitted. If the rest of the car is nice and ticks all the boxes for you in regards to condition/price etc., whatever make of carbs are fitted is the last thing to be concerned about.


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PostPost by: elans3 » Thu Jul 21, 2022 4:04 pm

+1 for Webers or Dellorto's, wouldn't have anything else.
Current :- Elan S3 DHC SE S/S 1968,
1963 Alfa Giulia Ti Super Rep.
Previous :-
Elan S3 DHC SE SS 1968,
Elan S3 DHC S/E 1966
Elan S3 FHC Pre-Airflow 1966
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PostPost by: bitsobrits » Fri Jul 22, 2022 12:34 am

Once Webers or Dellorto's are properly set up, they don't need "tuning" for many years/miles, just clean fuel and regular running to keep the carbs from "varnishing" (deposits from evaporated fuel).

So if a prospective car revs cleanly through the rev range, idles well, with no obvious carb faults, you are good to go and needn't worry about the carbs for quite some time.

And for what it's worth, I've had Elans with Z-S, Weber, and Dellorto carbs, and would not want Z-S again. I prefer the crisper throttle response and awesome sound of the one throat per cylinder arrangement.
Steve

Elan S1 1963-Bourne bodied
Elan S3 1967 FHC pre airflow

Formerly:
Elan S1 1964
Elan S3 1966 FHC pre airflow
Elan S3 1967 FHC airflow
Elan S4 1969 FHC
Europa S2 1970
Esprit S2 1979
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PostPost by: Slowtus » Fri Jul 22, 2022 2:19 am

And just to restate the obvious...the "non start" you mention could be anything and everything OTHER than the carbs, regardless of the name on the carb bodies.
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PostPost by: persimmon » Fri Jul 22, 2022 2:11 pm

Yes , good point . The engine turned over well on the starter but showed no sign of firing up , so maybe it`s an electrical problem .
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Fri Jul 22, 2022 2:34 pm

Hi persimmon.
It would be quite a while before I suspected carburettor problems.
All we know so far is that the starter motor works.
We do not know if there is a power supply to the ignition coil, sparks at the plugs or if there is any petrol in the carburettor float chamber.
Can you go back with someone else and test a few things ?
Some people prefer one type of carb, but they all work.
Eric in Burnley
1967 S3SE DHC
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PostPost by: JeffP » Fri Jul 22, 2022 10:25 pm

As I am learning it is not quite so simple. I recently bought an Elan Plus2 with Webers - when I went to investigate further I found they are 40DCOE Webers but they are type 8. No one of any of the suppliers in the UK or North America have heard of type 8s. Depending on the model and year they should be type 18s or type 31s,
I think recent replacements are type 154. The type is stamped on the plate on the top of the carb.
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PostPost by: richardcox_lotus » Sat Jul 23, 2022 9:58 am

Jeff - it’s 151’s for modern 40DCOEs

Regards
Richard
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PostPost by: JeffP » Sat Jul 23, 2022 12:16 pm

As soon as I posted it I realized I had it wrong. Many thanks
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PostPost by: Lotus 50 » Sat Jul 30, 2022 11:09 am

I sometimes wonder where all the Stromberg heads went and where all the Weber heads came from. Most of the Plus 2s and Elans I see have been converted to Weber carbs. They still have the hood bulge, so my assumption is that these are conversions.
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Sun Jul 31, 2022 6:38 am

Lotus 50 wrote:I sometimes wonder where all the Stromberg heads went and where all the Weber heads came from. Most of the Plus 2s and Elans I see have been converted to Weber carbs. They still have the hood bulge, so my assumption is that these are conversions.


During 68 and 69 all the cars came with the hood bulge but only the US cars used Strombergs, Other markets still used Webers despite the hood.

There however were a lot of Stromberg engines retro-fitted with Webers over the last 50 years also, so many 69 to 70 cars that had Strombergs and hood bulge in all markets have been converted . I have picked up 6 Stromberg heads from under people work benches over the years and converted 5 of them to Webers with John McCoy / Omintech conversion as they all had had little use and were in near new condition so they had come off cars early in their life.

cheers
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PostPost by: Harvey » Tue Aug 09, 2022 4:47 am

Another option is to replace the Strombergs with Mikuni carbs. See my article in the general Lotus discussion section: Mikunis In/Strombergs out.

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