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Everything posted by rwiggins951

  1. Not sure of a specific place in Chicago area, but will echo the comments about this being something any shop could handle. Nothing complicated, just lots of hose unions each with a clamp that likely needs tightened. A pressure tester is a great tool for any Esprit owner to have. The pre-trip pressure test saved me from roadside disaster more than once with my V8. I will say that in 10 years of ownership, the primary reliability issues were coolant leaks. The only other issue was a failed alternator, but I still made it home. Upgrading to the silicone hoses from JAE is highly recommended. For now though, a pressure tester and some time under the car tightening hose clamps will have you sorted. Not the ideal weather for repairs, so whoever you trust for your daily driver can tackle this too. A lift makes it a quick and painless effort. Regards, Rod Cleveland Oh
  2. Many thanks. Was hard to let go of. I am certain I will regret it, but it was time to move on. It is headed to Lancashire. Maybe you will cross paths with it at an event someday. Regards, Rod
  3. I sold my modded Esprit V8. It is headed back to the UK. I never got around to installing the G50 conversion that I bought from Mike Seekinger out of John (Jack?) Hazzard's Esprit V8 race car. These transmissions (G50/52) seem to fetch a fair amount of money from the mid engine kit car guys due to the fact that they can be made to handle 800+ hp. I have the trans listed on eBay. I did want to post some pics of the conversion kits for the Lotus community in case anyone is curious to see how this could be done. The parts were rather crudely executed so I planned to use them as templates for my install. The axles and flywheel were nice, so I suppose the rest is cosmetic. I never personally ran this setup, or saw it in a car. But I do know that it worked. Anyway, a bunch of photos are included below. Hope you find them interesting: Rod Wiggins 98 Esprit V8 (SOLD) 70 Porsche 911E 911R tribute 59 Triumph TR3 Le Mans Replica 71 Lotus Elan SE Coupe
  4. Somehow I missed that spec in the workshop manual. Thanks much for providing it! The turbo indeed stopped smoking with a quart less oil, but now I can ensure that the dipstick is providing a correct reading. Regards, Rod
  5. Ok, I know this sounds remedial, but bear with me: I know the book says 6.7 quarts for an oil + filter change, but does this account for the amount of oil you may or may not drain from the coolers?? You might ask, why not use the dipstick er...dipstick? Well, because mine has been replaced and I am not 100% sure that the new collar and nut are in exactly the same spot as original. They are not a fixed length, but instead a pipe and compression fitting. This is a basic error to not be sure, but before you judge me, please note that Lotus never intended this part to be replaced with the engine in the car. Why the big deal? Well, I am pretty sure I have been over filling it because my freshly rebuilt (for the second time) turbo charger (RH side) is smoking again after I topped off the oil and went for a few hundred miles of aggressive driving. Before the second rebuild, the turbo would stop smoking if the oil was low, but I rebuilt it anyway. I had added a quart based on my dipstick reading (bottom marker) and it read to the top marker (as expected) when cold. After the drive, the reading was nearly 1/4 inch above top marker. There was no fuel or water in the oil to account for this increase in level. I drained the sump and thoroughly collected the oil from the filter (always cut them open for piece of mind, or warning signs). Tallied the total oil and it was almost exactly 7.0 US quarts. Cold. Sounds a bit high, but the arse-high attitude of the car when I drained it makes me think my coolers are still full. So if the book figure includes oil for the coolers, then my 7.0 quarts + cooler oil is certainly enough to prevent proper draining of a turbo and probably a bit of oil frothing in the crank case. If 6.7 does not include coolers, then the extra 0.3 of a quart does not sound like enough to explain the turbo smoke. Which would be highly unfortunate news. Incidentally, I put 5 quarts in and the dipstick reads 1/8 inch above low. Cold. This is after letting the car idle for 20 minutes the prior day with no smoke whatsoever from the turbo. I did drop the exhaust and clean out any residual oil in the pipe and turbine housing. Thoughts? Thanks in advance!
  6. After switching to the Red Race ECU on my car I had all sorts of idle issues. I am told the original mapping for learning idle was crude. (Perhaps since it was an early tune for racing and did not benefit from improvements along the way.) Anyway, I also replaced the idle valve a couple times. In fairness I had a crack in the EGR tube that I think was shortening the live of the valve through allowing excessive heat to build up under the plenum. I tried all the other options as well: clearing the memory and 'retraining idle' replacing temperature switches. Monitored duty cycle on my laptop etc etc... Stalling is very embarrassing. Theoretically, the cars should idle with the idle valve fully closed. Finally, I just went for the 'cheater' option and made a slight adjustment to that little set screw on the throttle body. This can be done without taking anything apart, but it is tricky to get at the jamnut and fit the right screwdriver. About 3/4 turns and the car has never stalled since. Basically, I needed the car to be able to run at a minimum of 650 rpm when the ECU has the idle valve fully closed. It is a cheater fix, but it worked. Regards, Rod Wiggins
  7. Matte clear would be a great way to get the same effect on another color. Might be even cooler than on black even. Loved the Land Rover picture. It was made even better by the branch scratches that should be required by law on any proper Defender.
  8. I have seen the effect in a couple of instances and thought it was very cool and somewhat subtle. Here are a couple pics of my matte black stripes on my Esprit. It was a real pain to get them to follow the lines of the car and still look straight from front to back. It is really hard to capture the effect on camera. It looks much better in person. Let me know what you think.... Also, I did change the color of the wheels a touch--trying for a subtle gold. It just looks like I have a bit of filter on the camera in these photos. Here are a few more photos. I actually did the bumper a second time since these were taken as the stripe was not quite straight. Regards,
  9. IAC valve is a constant headache for me. High heat can cause them to stick closed or open. I would find that taps with a mallet on my plenum would slowly unstick the IAC and return it to normal. Not practical at stoplights. Likely time for a replacement. Alternately, you could have a significant intake leak on that bank which would explain the high idle and the lean mixture (hot exhaust). Spraying a bit of carb cleaner at the edges of the plenum while it is idling high is a good test to find a bad gasket. This is a long-shot. Just the only thing that would tie the two symptoms together. More likely is the failed cat. High engine bay temps may have shortened the life of the IAC but it is time for a new one anyway. When you have the plenum off you can inspect the gaskets. The cat issue should be easy to confirm. The difference in heat for the collapsed cat will be obvious to your hand from a few inches. I believe the exhausts are linked, so you wont be able to tell much from the relative flow out of the pipes. Pretty much I am agreeing with what the others have said. Regards,
  10. I had Johan's setup prior to the factory red. I must say Johan's felt a bit better for low-end torque and throttle response. A/F ratios are very similar at full boost. I thought that Johan had copied the factory map, so I may have been imagining the additional 'snappiness' in his chip. I did not do any dyno comparison. I had fried my Johan-modded ecu when I charged the battery and needed a new ECM anyway. Decided to just buy the factory red and be done with it. It was only a few dollars more. Thanks for all the feedback on the EGR question. Can't wait to remove the whole lot! From the manifold on out. I have to wonder what sort of EGR flow the red ECU was actually managing through the EGR stepper motor on a US-spec car. I have to imaging EGR flow along with hot exhaust gasses under the plenum contributed significantly to the sticky IAC valve. It always stopped working after a hard pass. Regards,
  11. Anyone know if the EGR functions are fully disabled when using the RED ECU? Asked another way, anyone using a RED ECM that does not have EGR at all? I have a US-spec 98 Esprit. I am using the factory RED ECU. I have the plenum off to replace a sticky Idle valve and I noticed that the EGR pipe is cracked. This may be associated with the reason the my last IAC valve annoyingly only lasted a year. I would really like to remove the EGR system altogether. I understand that the early UK cars did not have EGR at all and the non-US cars show a small plug inserted in the EGR manifold that would appear to effectively disable the system. My concern is that I do not want to end up throwing a code if I remove the EGR pipe and plug both ports. I assume the 'race only' and non US-specific nature of the Red ECM would dispense with such things as EGR in the same way it ignores the post-cat O2 sensors. Can anyone confirm this? Many thanks!
  12. Nope. I am packing the Esprit up right now for the 5 hour trip. See you there!
  13. 1998 Lotus Esprit V8 SCCDC0827WHA15573 Black, Tan Rod Wiggins, Cleveland, OH, USA.
  14. I may have mentioned the car had a bit of a shunt at an open track day back in November. It is finally back together. I did have some scuffs on a couple wheels so I decided to refinish all four wheels. And since they would all need redone, I decided to do a bit of a modern ode to the John Player Special color scheme. The wheels are a color called 'champaigne'. In some light they are just dark gray, in other they are fairly obviously gold. Let me know what you think. (and the car is missing a few parts yet as I am waiting for the final color sand and buff to be perfect) Cheers, Rod
  15. I spent several years tuning race and high performance street cars professionally. I have used Johan's chips and monitored air fuel ratio's with top end equipment. The mixture is very safe at least up to 17psi. (the highest I measured). The 12psi capsules are a good upgrade and will not lead to 'sudden death' of engine and driveline components. I recommend the use of a quality boost gauge and controller. The boost gauge will confirm that the capsules are indeed calibrated correctly and that everything went back together right. Remember, the controller will only allow you to go up with your boost from 12 psi, but not down. I like the high-end units since they allow you to modify the boost curve a bit. Stock wategates have a tendancy to leak at raised boost causing unnecessary loss of power. P.S. Beautiful car! Tan with black is my favorite combination. My car is coming back together after a small 'off' at an open track day. my 2 cents (or .005 euro) Rod
  16. rwiggins951


    I have had two versions of the "race ECU." The first one was rechipped by Johan. He does a great job on this and I was very happy with the results. You can see if it has been rechipped by checking (as another poster mentioned) that the two main chips are now in sockets. The stock boxes do not come that way. I also recently purchased the official "Race ecu" from the Lotus factory in Hethel. I was hoping it was going to be fancy red or something. It came in an official lotus parts box and said offroad use only. However, The part itsef looked the same. On the ECU it was handwritten hastily in marker a big X and "offroad use only", but not much else to distinguish it. I may be able to post a photo in a few days. Jeff from JAE tells me that Lotus has two part numbers for V8 ECMs. One that is accompanied by your VIN in order to match the MY emissions equipment as well as whether you want the high-torque (later mapping). The other part number is for the race ECM. The fact that these two boxes are considered a different part entirely, instead of simply a variation on the software, was surprising to me. Hope this helps, Rod
  17. Seems like a shame to go through that unpleasant job and not make even a modest improvement in turbo efficiency. Turbo technology has come a fair distance in the last 10 years. I went with these turbos on my car and felt it was a worthwhile upgrade: There were no modifications whatsoever required for fittment. Good luck. Rod
  18. Anyone have a used rear wheel for my 98 Esprit? I am looking for the flat 6-spoke AWI design. Apparently there was a slight mishapp when my refinisher was working on my wheels. They will be paying for the replacement, so cost is not the biggest factor. I am hoping to find one in the US to keep the project moving forward. This is stemming from a minor off-track excursion last November. Since then it has been a series of parts snafus and other unfortunate events (including a fried ECM from charhing the battery) that continues to keep the car from returning to the road. New rear wheels are available from Lotus for considerable expense and close to a month's wait. The wheel will be refinished, so cosmetic scuffs are not a problem. Any thoughts? Thanks, Rod
  19. I have Yohan's Red Race chips. With two different widebands a/f meters I only saw it touch 10/1 very occasionally. It is still on the rich side, but not off the charts as you describe. I run 15psi most times with upgraded turbos and water injection. Not sure what the resolution is on these fuel maps above 10 psi or so, but you may want to look elsewhere for the source of all this extra fueling. Once that is ruled out, you may find that the mixture leans a touch more if you run 14psi. This might put you right in the range you want to be, provided the fuel maps are effectively maxed above 10 psi. Just a thought.
  20. To Mike's point, I too was concerned about driveline life with the aggressive boost curve. I did change the steepness of the cuve on my boost controller. I belive my wastegate capsules are set in the 10-12psi range so I only had so much adjustability. Turning down the steepness of the boost curve helped with traction and made power a bit more linear. Incidentally, I did let the president of our local Lotus club drive my car on one of our favorite twisty road events. The car was set at 1bar. He races carts and drives a beautiful and wickedly entertaining Caterham, so I figured he'd be fine. Long before I was done enjoying the Caterham, he asked that we switch back stating that he was just too frightened by the car. He said he just could not get comfortable with how quickly (too much) power was available. Everything is relative I suppose. My memory is fading a bit, but the boost curve adjustment may be the change that prevented the overboost check engine light from being triggered.
  21. I have Johan's red ECU with an aftermarket boost controler and upgraded turbos. I drove the car all summer with the boost ranging from 0.9 to 1.1 Bar. I received a P1412 error once, mid season. Not a particularly hard run. It was a warmer day, which usually means lower boost. I was confused. Not likely helpful, but certainly an additional data point. Regards, Rod
  22. Grant, The 2 bar sensor is just a standard GM Map sensor, finding a GM 3 bar should not be a problem. Not sure how you are intending to modify the ECU to have it make any sense of the new signal though. I use a product called MAP-ECU . It is just a piggyback unit with a built in 3bar sensor. Basically, it uses the signal from its own three bar to send a signal to the stock ECU. The nice thing is that you can remap this signal so it is in the range that the ECU needs to see. It has a nice "learning" feature where you leave the car running off of the 2Bar sensor and the MAP-ECU is creating a 3-D map of the voltage signal the ECU is expecting in relation to the manifold pressure. Once this map is built you can switch to running from the 3 bar sensor and make fine-tuning changes from there instead of starting from scratch with a full fresh tune. You might have a bit of trouble finding one, but mine was under $400 US, which seemed like an exceptionally good deal compared to the popular 2-D piggyback garbage you see in many imports. Good Luck, Rod
  23. Very nice. Thanks for sharing. Please post the rest of the project. --Header tank, heat exchanger, remainder of the plumbing to the intake tract, etc. Also would be interesting to hear an estimate of what you have invested in parts and supplies. Rod
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