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LS4 Engine into Esprit S2


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89 replies to this topic

#21 saggitarius

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Posted 02 December 2009 - 07:55 PM

Haven't really started on that route yet.
In the process of preparing my garage for the build. Which means building shelves on all the walls and getting all sorts of parts, tools and equipment up from the floor. The two big compressors, engine hoist, floor jacks, sand blasting cabinet and lots of other stuff takes up all the available floor space when crammed in between the Lotus project, the Marcos and lots of other stuff.

I have come to the conclusion that this winter will be used for a lot of preparations and gathering the parts needed. And indeed starting the process of sorting the red tape out.

#22 Yeti

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 10:35 AM

Everyone I talk to say the same: If you want to have it street legal, talk to the authorities first. If you present them with the final solution they will in 99.9% of all cases say NO. Sad but true. I think you have some major "sucking up" to do towards your local "Biltilsyn" Posted Image

Good luck, and keep us posted.

Bjørn

Edited by Yeti, 03 December 2009 - 10:36 AM.

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#23 SubWoofer

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 01:54 PM

He may be in too deep already, since he threw away the original backbone (or did I misunderstand something?). Chances are BT will consider it "oppbygd" - thus costing the same as the import duties for a brand new car.

Edited by USAndretti42, 25 December 2009 - 03:19 AM.
Removed quote


#24 richardvg

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 02:37 PM

hi

could not help noticing the picture when you picked up your car- who was the broad hanging out on the west end corner?

richard
Technically sound ...Theoretically poked !

#25 saggitarius

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Posted 04 December 2009 - 04:48 PM

I was never going to first install everything on the old chassis, without the provision for upper rear links etc., building up the complete car for legal presentation, and then pick everything apart to build everything up again using an S3 chassis this time. If it doesn't work legally with the S3 it won't work at all. So yes - the old S2 chassis has ended up racing the "eternal freeways in the skies" in some form. It was delivered to the local metal recycling plant this summer. And now things will roll as they come.

And the West End Girl in the picture seems to be my beloved wife, who wanted very much to come with me on an excursion to England that summer, to pick up the Esprit and visit some friends in the process :rolleyes:

#26 saggitarius

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Posted 25 December 2009 - 12:55 AM

Now seems to be the time to retract into the garage and do some work. At least the weather is not looking bright for outside activities :-)

http://i601.photobuc.../Julaften04.jpg

Edited by saggitarius, 25 December 2009 - 12:57 AM.


#27 Yeti

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Posted 28 December 2009 - 01:10 PM

Hi
Have you seen this:
http://www.sportsvog...sitepageid=1009

Cheers,
BjÝrn
Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today - James Dean

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#28 saggitarius

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Posted 01 January 2010 - 06:15 PM

After I got the Lotus project I had to finish of the work on the garage. First of all to put insulation in the ceiling - which is done and has helped a lot - but I also need to spread electricity and compressed air through the room. It's an OK space, with almost 70 square meter, (11x6 meters), but that doesn't stop it from being filled up with everything. Even if I think I'm tough on myself not allowing things in there that are not related to cars and traffic. But lately it has been difficult to walk in there for a person on foot...

Posted Image
Posted Image
Posted Image
So this Christmas I managed to set aside time to bolt wooden standers on all the walls and start to hang up shelves there. And throw away a lot of rubbish that has been laying around for ages. Among a lot of other things four old rusty Alfa Romeo wheels and lots of cardboard boxes with content that now can be left on the new shelves.

Underneath her somewhere is a complete Lotus Esprit body. (And I'm not kidding!!):
Posted Image

From an other angle it can be seen :-)
Posted Image

But give me a few days now and I'll be back with a completely different garage - where it's possible to do some work :-)))

By the way - the blue little beauty in the background on a couple of the pictures is the Marcos that lives in there among all the rubbish.

Edited by saggitarius, 01 January 2010 - 06:32 PM.


#29 cobraesprit

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Posted 01 January 2010 - 09:08 PM

Well done on sorting your garage out.........makes me feel like doing mine again now.

Have you done anymore looking around at ECU's

BTW the LS4 is like mine really low compression ideal for either turbo's or supercharging .... should be good for around 500-600 with a little boost

#30 saggitarius

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 12:13 AM

The compression ratio on the LS4 is 10:1, and I have thought that with time it will be fun to try a supercharger of the more modern type, but that wil be something for after the car is on the road.

And when it comes to which ECU it's still open, but have read some positive comments on the VEMS. Seems to be quite able to control a modern V8....

#31 saggitarius

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Posted 02 January 2010 - 04:14 PM

A small update on the project.
Even if I'm deep in cleaning/clearing out the garage and making it fit for working on the cars, there is some progress of the conversion across in the US.

As I mentioned earlier I have "outsourced" the job of making the adapter plate and starter/clutch to a machine shop in America. I guess I'm going to face some challenges anyway, and since I don't have a lathe (yet) I would had to buy services locally anyway.

The machine shop had done this job before on an LS1, but since the starter motor sits on the transmission side on the LS4 and has a different bolt pattern they had to do some adjustments. But now things are nearing completion over there and I got a couple of pictures:

Here is the adapter itself, together with the starter that comes with the "package":
Posted Image

And since the adapter has a certain thickness it removes the transaxle away from the engine, bringing the input shaft to the gearbox away from the crank spigot bearing. Therefore the machine shop has made a new flywheel from 1018 steel. This takes the surface for the clutch closer to the gearbox AND has a centre hole that mimics the end of the crank, ready to be fitted with a bearing.

Posted Image

The flywheel will go on the crank together with a flexplate from an automatic to supply the starter with a set of teeth for starting. I'm still a bit unsure about exactly how the starter is going on, but that is the last thing under construction at the moment, and I will come back to this quite soon.

Edited by saggitarius, 02 January 2010 - 04:43 PM.


#32 simon a-b

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 12:57 AM

The compression ratio on the LS4 is 10:1, and I have thought that with time it will be fun to try a supercharger of the more modern type, but that wil be something for after the car is on the road.

And when it comes to which ECU it's still open, but have read some positive comments on the VEMS. Seems to be quite able to control a modern V8....



I would have thought 10:1 was quite a high compression? If you went for forced induction would you need to be using premium grades of fuel?

I've been following this thread with interest as I also thought the LS4 would be a great option for a conversion, not sure I'd be allowed that increase in capacity here in TAS though...

keep up the good work!
cheers,
simon

#33 saggitarius

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 06:31 PM

You can do some force feeding on 10:1 but need to be careful. With the swept volume of the V8 you will notice a difference with just a modest increase in pressure. But for a more brutal approach you will need to lower the CR, which is not expensive with the prices of parts in America (at least compared to what you have to pay for parts for Lotus, TVR and Porsche).

But in my view there is an other thing to consider: The Esprit is a relatively light sports car, and to just increase the low down grunt of an LS4 without doing anything with the upper part of the rev register doesn't feel completely right. I like to be able to hang on to gears for some time and feel the tingling in my spine from the combination of shove in the back and the sound of a powerful engine revving through its register right behind my ears. So I guess that when the car is on the road and has been sorted, I'm going to take some time to think of the alternatives before starting to take her apart :animier:

#34 saggitarius

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Posted 17 February 2010 - 07:49 PM

As I warned for in the beginning, this project wasn't going to be a quick two week buildup ;-)
I wasn't completely ready with installing everything I needed in the garage, like lots and lots of shelves on all the walls (now in place), painting the ceiling and installing lots of light sources. And I still had some things to do on the stable mate Marcos.

But even if the Lotus is standing still in it self, I'm constantly searching for information and parts:

The S3 chassis I bought looks the part, and since I'm using an Audi trans - and have to buy a complete suspension anyway - I decided to build the later - Stephens - type, with outboard brakes. Have been in the market for such items, and the most difficult part to find second hand was the rear hub carriers.

Anyway, some weeks ago I managed. I saw an an on the LEW for an Esprit at a breakers yard in the UK. And I thought that it was fun that I could use parts from one of the ultimate Esprits.
This is a picture of the car, that obviously had had a fire (seems to happen often)

Posted Image

It's a Sport 350, and I bought both the rear and front hub carriers from it. And since I allready had the radius arms and rear upper and lower links it's now starting to become complete.
Up front I have the upper arms and the lower ones are soon coming as well.

Posted Image

Posted Image

The parts are in good condition technically but I'm going to do some blasting, sanding and painting before installing. The upper links I have are of the standard variety, but will be rebuilt into adjustable.

Since these parts are from a Stephens car I'll have to measure everything and find out if the wheels line up properly. But that's part of the fun:-)

And I must say it's fun that the parts are from a good birthplace. Not that it's any fun that the S350 burned in the first place, but when that happened anyway, I feel that these parts came to a good home.

Edited by saggitarius, 17 February 2010 - 07:50 PM.


#35 G√ľnter

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Posted 17 February 2010 - 11:21 PM

so you bought the hub-carriers from the 'Douglas-Valley Brakers' S350 ?

That car was already discussed in this board, and Douglas-Valley is often mentioned as to expensive. Can you say what you paid for the parts ?
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#36 saggitarius

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:00 PM

I agree that they are too expensive. Been in contact with them before and got quotes that were quite steep. However it seemed - after searching for such items second hand for almost a year - that the alternative was to buy NEW parts through the Lotus dealer network. And that became a lot more again.

I payed around £625 for all four corners, plus freight. And since that includes bearings, hubs, bolts and other hardware I just have to bite the bullet. And part of my judgement is that now I have a piece of documentation from a well known supplier that can be used when I present the converted car to the Norwegian authorities. Since it's from a Lotus V8 it will hopefully mean something to them...

#37 saggitarius

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 11:38 PM

Hi folks - just a small update on the LS4 adapter:

I wrote some time ago that I found a supplier in the US that had experience with connecting LS engines with Audi transaxles, and a couple of days ago a got the parts in the post. They look really good, and it's quite obvious that a lot of thought and work has gone into this.

The adapter plate itself is really two plates mated together:
Posted Image

When you look from the engine side of the plates you see the cut out for the starter at the upper right side in this picture. And the way the two plates are made makes the flexplate run within the adapter plates. That way locating the starter is really well controlled, and the teeth of the starter ring run inside the twin adapter plates.
Posted Image

Included in the parts I got is also a new (professionally reconditioned) starter and a reworked flexplate with starter ring teeth that fit the teeth of the starter. Even the correct bolts are included.
Posted Image
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and a new clutch disk with the correct spline pattern for the transaxle
Posted Image

and a new pressure plate, Sachs thrust bearing - and a special adapter for locating the starter to the main adapter plate!
Posted Image

Then there is the flywheel itself. Here seen from the side facing the flexplate/engine:
Posted Image

Here the clutch side with the necessary holes and dowel pins.
Posted Image

When you look into the centre hole of the flywheel you can see that there is allready a roller bearing to support the input shaft to the trans:
Posted Image

All in all I'm very satisfied with the "package" :-)

As mentioned in another thread on this forum I've thought some time that the S1 version of the Esprit is the cleanest in appearance. It's not like it's a BIG difference, but a series of subtle differences that together make it cleaner.

I have the same with the sturdy old Lamborghini Countach. The first - show prototipo - version is the best looking in my eyes, and as they added more spoilers, extensions to the wheel houses and boxes to better the air flow and cooling it became more cluttered. Probably easier to live with than the first ones but not so good looking ;-)

I may have to be careful here with lots of views and lots of owners of all kinds of Esprits but my old S2 "shed" will be subject to some small modifications to make it look more like the S1. I'm not planning on a clone, just some tweaks.

One of those tweaks is the rear lamp assembly. I've been searching for a set of S1 lamps for some time, and the few ones "out there" has been a bit expensive. But then I came to think of the source Lotus had for these lamps to begine with. I meant I've heard that they came from a Fiat X 1/9, and sought for those on eBay. And luck at first strike; a pair of immaculate X 1/9 lamps at a decent price now recides in my garage

Posted Image

Then I'll have to get the fiberglass and epoxy resin out to make these fit the way I want.

#38 pyropolymer

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Posted 28 February 2010 - 02:27 AM

great looking sandwich plate kit

whos the outfit in america that does this?

yes the S1 taillamps are x19's

if you like to replace S2 parts to get more of the S1 look ive been looking for S2 wheels and mirrors with chrome stems.


cheers

pp

#39 saggitarius

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 09:31 AM

The small outfit I used in this case is called

A&E Automotive & Machining and the person I was in touch with is Eric Martin.
I reached them on aeauto@tri.net.

I have started this project with an empty bodyshell with chassis and an engine, so I'm afraid I don't have any parts that are surplus to requirements. On the contrary, I need to find and buy every little piece, bolt and nut ;-)

#40 pyropolymer

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 07:44 PM

gier

many thanks for the contact info


please keep us posted!


warm regards

pp




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