tonytransam

Wow do V8's Rust!

21 posts in this topic

I decided to pop my head under my recently acquired 2000, 17000 mile V8 and wow do V8's rust, don't get me wrong nothing major, chassis is perfect, but everything attached to it has rust, nuts, bolts, drive shafts, springs, front suspension etc are coated. The cars mileage is without question correct, the interior is perfect, body perfect. When I was buying it, I peered through the wheels, the callipers they are perfect and clean, the discs have no lip on them at all, I just assumed the car would be like that underneath. Has my car sat somewhere extremely damp or is this common?

I can see this being a pain to work on as things pack up!

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Most of the fixings are mild steel. Its time, not miles that lead to the corrosion and it's not uncommon, more so in the UK than elsewhere.

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The V8 is no different from any other Esprit in that respect unfortunately. A little disappointing I know but as you say nothing major.

Trevor.

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Lotus once had a brief initiative whereby you could email the CEO (Kim Ogaard-Nielsen at the time) and let him know your pet hates about Lotus products, and be sure of a response.

 

Your rust comments were the same as mine, and I asked why it was so noticeable. KON actually did email back and said that individual steel components suffered more on glassfibre cars as there was in issue over earthing, which caused electrolysis to increase (?) or something like that. Chemistry was never a strong suit, but it sounded plausible.

 

Of course I asked if they could spend a few pounds on stainless components but never got an answer that time...

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yep there's truth in that, in my boat (glassfibre) every metallic item has an earth bonding to reduce corrosion levels.

as you can imagine in a saltwater environment the problem is much worse hence why everything is earthed

a case in point. The P.O. of my boat had one of the seacock valves replaced 1yr before I bought the boat. (inline water tap that you turn 90° to open or close) whoever fitted it didn't bother to reconnect the earth strap.

not long after buying the boat I had to replace the pipe connected to the valve, I closed the valve, removed the pipe & had water gushing into the boat! . I connected the hose back up & delayed the job til the boat was out the water in the winter ( it wasn't urgent to replace the pipe)

Boat safely out the water, I discovered the whole innards of the tap had corroded away !!. I fitted a new tap, connected the earth bonding. 3 yrs on (start of this year) I pulled the pipe off the tap & the innards are still in perfect order.

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Sacrificial anodes . . .

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Sacrificial anodes . . .

Only used on the outside of the boat Edward. The skin fitting on the underside of the hull to which the tap is connected has an I.d. of 20mm, as you can imagine there isn't enough metal on the skin fitting to attach a suitable size anode.

The drive unit (leg) on the stern of the boat does have anodes, 7 in total which I have to replace at least every season.

My boat is moored on a pontoon which has an electrical supply, due to the environment said electrical supply often has earth leakage which greatly increases corrosion on the boat. My boat has two "clever boxes of tricks" called galvanic isolators, 1for 12vdc electrics, the other for the 220vac electrics. Both of these units are passively fitted into their respective earth circuits and somehow (read I don't fully understand) shield all metallic items from earth leakage.

neighbouring boats on my pontoon who don't have these isolators installed typically replace their anodes upto 4 times a year, as s further measure, said neighbours also submerge several very large anodes on ropes around their boat

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Yes, I have a pal who has a narrow boat that has, I think, at least two fitted on the hull below the waterline.

 

It's pity that similar systems haven't been devised for vehicles that have only occasional contact with water by way of rain-related splashes - unless it's a James Bond submarine Esprit.

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I have just put it in for a service and they actually reckon it's not that bad.

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Who with, LE Marine Services? :lol:

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Also important to remember that stainless steel hardware is not as strong

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Washers etc rust very quickly on most Lotus (and Tesla's).  I had always assumed this was due to Lotus taking the term "penny washer" too literally.  The earthing / lack of sacrifical anode is something I had not thought of.

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Hi Guys,

 

I make a point of replacing the mild steel fittings on my 96 V8 with stainless steel whenever I carry out work in an affected area. Like mild steel, stainless steel comes in varying strength grades, I have found that if you use a dedicated supplier and advise them of the intended use, they will usually recommend the appropriate grade of stainless steel. For nuts bolts and screws I use Orbital Fasteners; for hydraulic fittings I use Hopespares and Pirtek (note the latter will make up just about anything you could want, however you may have to supply the component parts).

 

Once fitted you will never have to struggle with rust-fused threads, snapped studs or heating with a blow torch to get something undone

Edited by G4RTHV8

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would clear waxoyl not help prevent the rust?

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Once fitted you will never have to struggle with rust-fused threads, snapped studs or heating with a blow torch to get something undone

This is true, however I find that stainless steel bolts tend to seize a lot easily than steel. I still prefer stainless, but what a pain when they lock up!

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And... this is why I live in a semi-arid climate... virtually no rust on any of my esprit's.. even my 88 is virtually rust free. I was actually shocked at how well they hold up over the years. I've worked on Honda's that are so rusted after 10 years that you have to cut almost every bolt. I'm especially happy with the galvanized steel frame.

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Hi Guys,

 

I make a point of replacing the mild steel fittings on my 96 V8 with stainless steel whenever I carry out work in an affected area. 

 

 

Once fitted you will never have to struggle with rust-fused threads, snapped studs or heating with a blow torch to get something undone

 

Stainless steel bolts are much worse to remove than rusted plated ones. When I started my resto the all my bots were really badly rusted but they all came out fine. I took the decision to replace with plated bolts rather then SS bolts. Personally I think SS in most cases is over rated.

 

Buddsy

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My 1999 has 12k miles on it and shows none of the rust you speak of.

 

Must be your environment.  :-)

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I've used stainless a2 and a4 bolts, washers and nuts for 25 years on various applications, and they never broke, always stayed in place and never got stuck. Most of the time I've used coppergrease on parts that does not move.

 

Cheers,

Jacques.

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I looked into the use of stainless nuts and bolts and was told to avoid using with steel due to Galvanic Corrosion. In the early day I did mix plated and stainless bolts but soon found mild corrosion on the steel components within the year (and the car had only been out of the garage for short periods to have work completed on it). I have also found that marine grease is a good option to limit corrosion as it does not dry / breakdown over time ( I use Quicksilver Lubricant grease 2-4-c with Teflon).

 

I now use this on all nuts and bolts (seems to work well) and try to avoid mixing metals with stainless.

 

For more information on Galvanic Corrosion have a search on Google - there is plenty of information out there.

 

regards,

 

Marc

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Just to rub it in... ;)

 

My 89SE lower front wishbone after 84k miles, just cleaned it up with brake cleaner.

 

I drive in all weather, and do not clean the undercarriage ever, but I do live in a dry environment, about as far from the sea as you can get.

 

2014-06-15.jpg

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