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Elite 4.9

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  • Name
    Richard Norman
  • Car
    Lotus Elite 502, 1974
  • Modifications
    Only factory approved..really ! IF these were done when new the Elite would have sold way more cars. List of mods is in my photo section. check it out and tell me what you like.
  • Location
    United States, Seattle

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  1. Elite 4.9

    Coffee?

    Grew up with coffee the first thing I smelled each morning as my dad had his normal first cup at home before going to work. Me, vast majority of my life, loved the smell didn't like the taste...way too bitter. But then my daughter got me started drinking an espresso, the darker the better, with some liquid stevia sweetener, in various flavors. Couldn't believe how people could drink it black but that is how I enjoy it today. And HOT! . Tea is ok.... just not something that drives me to it all that much. But one of my all time favorite racing drivers, "Teddy tea bagger" Ken Miles. I knew it had to be a great English drink way back the 1960's if K. Miles has to have it. Coffee is just king in the US especially in the Pacific NW. It is also one of the most powerful antioxidants. What better way to start your day in wet cold damp conditions that are now upon us closing in on winter soon. One thing I just learned is that the caffeine, in coffee, has a half life of 8 hours meaning you still have half the caffeine in your body after 8 hours. cheers, Richard ps love coffee ice cream..BEST...Starbucks "Java chip" dangerous substance !!!!
  2. Welcome JT to the Lotus Forum. Nice looking ride you have there. Great color ! atb, Richard
  3. Make sure you check the top of the exhaust pipes for holes as this is where it corrodes first and they are right next to the frame and if so, it won't be long before the rust will damage the thin sheet metal frame. My Elite, with just 28,000 miles on it when I bought it, had holes in the top of the pipe. No real damage had yet occurred on the frame but then mine was only 8 years old when I got it. Nice find and really not all that bad to start restoring your classic Elite. atb, Richard
  4. Most cams I have seen are measured in degrees @ .50 lift Not sure how Lotus does it though. Find and Lotus engine builder who knows is my best advice. atb, Richard
  5. Welcome David to the Lotus forum. One of my all time favorites is the Elan since it was new. Great choice ! By the way, my grandfather left Devon, England, real close to Plymouth way back in 1902 just after queen Victoria funeral. Maybe that is why I have had so many English sports cars over the years. It's just in my blood. lol atb, Richard
  6. Yeah, Pete is right, it can be done but is just better to drop the rear end. Makes the job quite easy when you do that. Just the opposite if you don't. Ask me how I know? Richard
  7. Kind of sounds like a bad or loose ground but these days your computer controls pretty much everything and they do, like all electrical devices, have a life expectancy and don't last. May need to put it on a scope to find the problem. atb, Richard
  8. Welcome to owning an Elite. But you have to remember these cars are old so most systems on these cars that aren't lovenly cared for, just have to been gone through especially the brakes. When Road & Track magazine, road tested the first year second gen Elite, it had the shortest stopping distance of any car they tested with the exception of a racing car. That was the first thing my dad taught me as a kid working on my '57 Ford, brakes.
  9. This is one thing that even the Lotus factory changed later getting rid of the same basic system that they used since the Elan. This was never changed on the Elan that I know ( they worked just the opposite from the second gen Elite...vacuum powered down and spring loaded up ....till they figured out you after you use all the power, like accelerating uphill, the old Elans headlamps would fall back down as they were vacuum assisted in the up position. Not a good design for night time driving. Older Fords had this system of vacuum powered wipers and one had to let off the throttle. for a second or two, to clean the windshield in a rain storm. After owning my '74 Elite and getting tired of seeing my headlamps in the up postilion which would only say down for a max of 12 hours and that was after I worked hard getting all the leaks as best I could eliminated , I decided to modify them with electrics lifts like I had on my TR8. Mazda uses an electric system that also works well for this mod and they stay where you put them. Well worth the time do so IMHO. atb, Richard
  10. To drop the rear end is no big deal. Once you do it a couple of times, it can be taken out in less than an hour. I used an air powered rivet gun with a flat hammer end to drive out the long bolts holding the whole rear end in place. Just use a smaller diameter long punch to drive out the bolts completely. You will have to disconnect the emergency brake cable right at the rear end. This seemingly simple step can give you fits if you try while the rear end is up in place unless you cut holes behind the rear seats to easily access the cable. You can lower the whole mess down to better access this step but rear end won't be totally free until the cable is disconnected. Not only will you need new seals on both sides , you will need two steel rings, one for each side, which is the most difficult part to deal with. It has to be cold chiseled off by smacking it with a hammer. Then when putting the new one on, you may have to take a few thousands off the inside of the steel ring with some light 220 grit wet dry sandpaper, like I did, and you will also need to heat the ring up in your oven to help expand it enough to slip it over the axle after you have carefully slid the new seals on without tearing the thin rubber which is the actual part that fails and is easily torn. Ask me how I know that? There is another thing you may have to deal with and that is the valve in the brake line ( located on my '74 Fed Elite in the engine bay, passenger side, low just before the brake line heads back to the rear. This part, can and will stick and not allow any brake fluid past to actually actuate the rear brakes. I tried to power bleed my rear brakes and even 160 psi was not enough to pump fluid to the rear brakes. Like anything new it may look a bit intimidating but after if you regularly do major stuff on your Elite it will just be another step necessary to keep these cars with all the original parts on the road. However, this is not all that difficult. atb, Richard
  11. Welcome Jason, From out on the northwest coast out of Seattle. Sounds like you have Lotus in your blood now. Enjoy this site. hope you get what you want. Richard
  12. Why people want to even think of altering or modifying any Lotus suspension is beyond me. Just because Lotus was so innovative in F1, that for many years, Lotus was so far ahead of the rest that the races became a race for, who was going to take second. Lotus road cars are a direct derivative of their racing cars so any modification that alters anything that has to do with handling should be an obvious no. no if you ask me. Why else do people buy these cars if not for the way the are designed with road manners a cut above the rest. Great fun ! These Elites give the impression of a larger car ( Body shape to allow 4 seats and could easily been a two seater...same wheel base as many Corvettes of the past.) but are so well sorted and designed to give much pleasure to those of us who love to corner fast.....much faster than most anyone drives simply, because you have to try really hard to find the limit in the Elite. I installed a Buick V-8 but it is as light as the original 907 Lotus twincam otherwise I wouldn't have done it because the sensitiveness of the front end springs, as they would have to be changed for most larger engines. And my Elite is already too low for some parking lot speed bumps so why would you want to lower it and mess up a car that is simply mind blowing in its' road manners especially around corners. I have made a good number of improvements and modifications on my Elite but this was one thing I really loved about the Elite, the fact that I didn't have to lower it because it already comes that way from the factory. Cheers, Richard
  13. What is really quite difficult to believe is that before production started, Lotus built two early Elite versions with the English version of the Buick 215, the Rover V8 at 4 L. Everyone liked it but Colin wanted an all English car and he said that the 4 liter didn't produce any more hp than the two liter. Twice the cubic inches and no more power or that it didn't make that much difference. Right ! Mine, with a 4.9 liter Buick (298 cid) , is very fun to drive. Much of the time, having so much torque in this engine, there is no need to down shift for a good boost in speed, just a little more stab on the gas petal is all that is needed. And it is way different than the original two liter Lotus twincam, by a long ways.! Still it can deliver over 30 mpg US.
  14. I always add Lucas oil stabilizer to my oil which is a thick, VERY sticky additive made for all engines. It not only will increase your oil pressure but will also eliminates dry starts when cold and sticks to all bearing and rotating engine parts to make them last longer. It will also give you better cylinder ring sealing which will raise your compression slightly and give you more power and mileage. I have used it for many years in all my engines and the big truckers swear buy it, buying it by the gallon. A friend with a Detroit diesel ran his 14.8 liter straight six to a million miles before overhauling it ! He also got up to 8.7 mpg (US) Pretty good for such a large loaded truck powered semi engine. It also allows motor oils a higher degree of lubricity which reduces oil consumption. Great stuff !! It has been around for a long time and has been tops in my book for many years and I never drive without it. https://lucasoil.com/products/engine-oil-additives/heavy-duty-oil-stabilizer cheers, Richard
  15. yes please include me for best recovery and thanks for all the work in the past done for our enjoyment. Bought my '74 Elite in 1984 and still own it. ATB, Richard
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