Lotus Elan

NEED HELP! Clutch problems @ Elan S2 with 5-speed gearbox

PostPost by: ripley » Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:54 am

Hello folks, once again I need your advice: As soon as the car (S2 with Plus 2 5-speed gearbox) is on temperature (after 2-3 miles), the clutch pedal stays pushed onto the floor/don't return, the clutch "sticks"/don't come back (and I have to pull it back with my feet). After having replaced clutch master & slave cylinder, fluid, clutch lines/hoses etc. the problem still exists! We didn't want to believe that it could be the clutch itself as beneath this problem, all gears engage well and clutch itself worked well, too. However, we now have taken engine & box out to replace the whole clutch assy, too. I've purchased all the new 5-speed parts And NOW a new problem and curious thing arrived:
Almost all the clutch parts installed before (from the previous owner) are completely different (size, dimensions, for the fork even its form!!) comparing to the parts acquired (from specialists as P.Matty & S.Miller; I don't think that they've send me the wrong parts?!). So, which parts are the WRONG parts ?? And which of them do I need? Any idea why there are/were those wrong parts? Looking at the pics, do you recognize something wrong? etc.
Please give me your advice as I don't know what to do now.
Many thanks, Fred
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PostPost by: rodlittle » Sat Oct 27, 2012 9:24 am

Hi
There are pictures of the clutch assy in the workshop manual, or dont you have one? if not I can send you a scan
Looks like the new fork which I assume is the goldy coloured one in your pictures is the original style fork as used in cortina, anglia etc but you dont have a picture of the C shaped part which goes between the fork and the release bearing, so the new fork wont work without that
. as I said see the pics in the manual
good luck
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:30 am

Hi Fred
You dont say what you had installed and what was supplied as replacement

The grey arm and thin clutch pressure plate assembly I dont recognise and I dont think are the normal Plus 2 Lotus 5 speed components, maybe they are out the later Elite that used the same box?

The normal Plus 2 5 speed pressure plate was like the thin one with free fingers from the diaphram spring that the throw out bearing with a round face ran on but it was a similar thickness to the standard 4 speed pressure plate. The base of the bearing carrier for the 5 speed was 12mm thick versus the 7mm for the 4 speed carrier. The C shaped spacer between the arm was the same for 4 and 5 speed as was the arm itself which is like the gold one shown.

cheers
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PostPost by: AussieJohn » Sat Oct 27, 2012 11:55 am

I think the clutch arm is slightly different for the 5 speed as the 4 speed one is not wide enough at the bearing end to clear the bit of the gearbox that the bearing carrier slides on.
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PostPost by: ripley » Sat Oct 27, 2012 2:46 pm

First, many thanks to Rod and Rohan.

Unfortunately I've only the Elan S1-4 workshop manual where is nothing about the 5-speed gearbox. If you have images/drawings of the 5-speed clutch, I would be very thankful if you can send a scan to me (Here or by email: [email protected]).

To clarify my pictures: Yes, the goldy coloured fork is the NEW one, as the clutch in the first picture (by LUK) which is narrower/thinner than the old one installed before. The clutch in pic #2 (by Borg&Beck) is the old one, together with the strange big & long fork (in black).
Together with the new parts came the 3 circlips. Those were NOT installed before(?).

A C-shaped part was not part of the part lot purchased(?). How is this item called?

Why had the old pressure plate a sort of bearing fixed onto the diaphram spring but the new one don't?? Which "style" do I need??

Which parts are the same for 4- AND 5-speed and which parts are 5-spped "only"?
Fred
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PostPost by: Chancer » Sat Oct 27, 2012 4:25 pm

For my money its a sticking piston/seal in either the master or slave cylinder, you said that lifting up the pedal by hand engages the clutch which points me to the master cylinder being the culprit, perhaps aided by a sticky slave cylinder and lack of return spring.
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PostPost by: ripley » Sat Oct 27, 2012 4:30 pm

@ Chancer: That's exactly what we thought but we've replaced twice (!!) slave and master cylinder with brand new items to check out: Nothing better! It can only be something wrong with the clutch itself. P.S.: Look at the little plate onto the clutch assy - there is a "ring" as if the release bearing has had permanent contact!
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PostPost by: Chancer » Sat Oct 27, 2012 4:37 pm

I think there normally is constant contact caused by the stiction in the slave cylinder, some clutches have a spring to hold the bearing in contact to stop sizzling noises.

Could there be a restriction in the pipe between the cylinders? had that on a mini once caused a very heavy clutch unless used very slowly, cant see how lifting the pedal would ease it though.

A bit of a mystery and I can appreciate you want to be sure before putting it all back together one more time.
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PostPost by: rodlittle » Sat Oct 27, 2012 4:53 pm

Sorry Fred I dont have a pic of the 5 speed gearbox/clutch
You do have a clutch return spring dont you? They are usually quite strong
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PostPost by: ripley » Sat Oct 27, 2012 6:32 pm

If it's really normal that there is constant contact, why is there excessive material abuse onto the little center section above the diaphram?
There cannot be a restriction in the pipe between master & slave cylinder because even this pipe also has been replaced twice (every time a brand new part!).
As you say, Chancer: A bit of a mystery! I even can't put all together as first I want to be sure which of these different clutch parts I'll put in...
Thanks for your service, Rod. Hope to get the pics from someone else here in the forum...(?)
First, we didn't have such a clutch return spring, now we have but even the spring don't change something. A mystery...
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PostPost by: Chancer » Sat Oct 27, 2012 7:16 pm

Its been several decades since I replaced a clutch plate with a bronze thrust face but I do recall them often being very worn.
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PostPost by: ripley » Sun Oct 28, 2012 12:54 pm

Can someone tell me if the little "studs" fixed onto the flywheel (which serve only as "positioning" the clutch onto the flywheel) are absolutely necessary or not? I'm asking because the new clutch cover don't have holes for these studs, only holes for the bolts. Without putting off these studs I can't fit the new cover.

Another question: Do you know if there are TWO different flywheels (for the 5-speed gearbox), a thinner and a larger variant??
Fred
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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Sun Oct 28, 2012 1:46 pm

Hi Fred

First off I don't know the box you are dealing with. Not many Elans came with them so most were fitted by OWNERS and what they did know one knows. You need to have a parts book for the Plus 2 (1976 covers the five speed version) you should also have the work shop manual that covers it too. Alex has done the swap and has written it up here on the forum.

elan-f14/gearbox-swop-t21414.html

Take some time and read Alex's topic before you do anything.

Brian Buckland's book would not be a bad idea either.

I believe that Brian has also done the swap and he has a great deal of experience in things mechanical.

The Plus 2 parts manual only lists one Flywheel, the clutch section makes no distinction between 4 speed and 5 speed but I don't know if this is really true or not.

That said I don't know. there is a .pdf that may be helpful at

http://www.gglotus.org/ggtech/elan-5spd/elan5spd.pdf

The dowels that you want to remove precisely locate the pressure plate so that it stays in balance, you need to get the correct one for the application.

Best of luck

Gary
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PostPost by: ripley » Sun Oct 28, 2012 3:34 pm

Hi Gary,
the box should be the ordinary Elan +2 5-speed one (Are there different variants from this one??); when I've purchased it, it has been offered as this.
Unfortunately, I neither have a parts book nor a workshop manual of the Plus 2;( Looking for it.
Already heard -but never read- that Alex has realized exactly the same project; many thanks, will look at it well!
Unfortunately, Brian Bucklands shows nothing about the 5 speed stuff (I think).
I thought that the dowels ("studs") only serve to bring the clutch plate in the right position; but fixing is done by the bolts, so the dowels are not 100% necessary(?).
Fred
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PostPost by: Chancer » Sun Oct 28, 2012 6:32 pm

The dowels align the cover plate concentrically with the flywheel and also take the torque reaction when engaging the clutch, without the dowels and relying on the bolts in their clearance holes the pressure plate will run eccentric, probably not a great problem but it could well come loose with the violent accelerations/decelerations that the crankshaft produces.

Leaving the dowel out of the crank/flywheel joint will soon have the flywheel drop off or the bolts snap, using setscrews or normal tolerance bolts in a propshaft joint will soon have the prop coming loose, the clutch cover has more bolts at a larger radius but I would not risk it.

That said I have a nagging feeling that some modern clutches dont use dowels but they probably have fitted bolts in close tolerance holes.
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