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simon a-b

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Everything posted by simon a-b

  1. Thanks for all the input. Rotor arm is a good option to check, and that the shaft is even rotating! I'll be away from the car for a while but will get a replacement cap and rotor for when I get to try it. Ballast resistor is nowhere near the carbs- my car has a separate fibreglass box for the ignition parts which bolts to the side of the engine bay, up against the boot wall so it's quite protected. When the resistor is in circuit I'm getting 7v at the coil, and good spark so would that rule out an internal short in the coil? It tested in the right range for resistance. It definitely needs ballast, it's marked 9v on the coil. I'll update when I can get back to the car... Simon
  2. Hi, I have had an ignition fail. Driving happily along, good response, everything happy and well in the world. Then a couple of pops/stutters, a minute of more running, then dead. No spark at the plugs. I have a 9v coil, tested and good (checked resistance of both primary and secondary windings) I don't have the resistant wire, I have a ballast resistor instead. Voltages checked- start circuit gets battery voltage (~13v), run circuit gets ~7v I have lumenition. Bulb/pickup checked and operating. I did the test with a peice of thin carboard acting as the rotor vane thing cutting the beam. When I cut the beam I got a fat, healthy spark from the coil, down the main lead (arcing across to the cam cover to test). I have new spiral wound leads. Lumenition tested as well- bridging the blue and black wires at the three-pin connector also produces spark. Spark is good. So I don't think the 7v vs 9v is the issue- unless this is what changed, and I can't see how? One question on the resistor- it's a ceramic block with a resistant wire protected by the ceramic. The wire glows red hot when it's running. The design holds it away from anything flammable so I think this is as standard, but I'd be interested if anyone thought this was a concern? So the only conclusion I can come to is that the failure is somewhere between where the main lead enters the distributor cap and the plugs. No spark seen at any plug lead. Can a distributor cap or rotor arm fail like that? It seems to be the only answer. The rotor arm is clean and good- I gave the end a light rub with fine grit sandpaper and the central button is clean. The pickups in the cap are clean too, I gave them a quick once-over as well. The cap looks to be undamaged. Will any Lucas 45D 4cylinder cap fit? Is there any difference between them? I've read of the blue cap vs the black cap- it's a S3 so no turbo. Thanks in advance (timing pun) Simon
  3. Sorry didn't realise I was in the Stevens area- I'll copy it across to the right section. Cheers, Simon
  4. Hi, I have had an ignition fail. Driving happily along, good response, everything happy and well in the world. Then a couple of pops/stutters, a minute of more running, then dead. No spark at the plugs. I have a 9v coil, tested and good (checked resistance of both primary and secondary windings) I don't have the resistant wire, I have a ballast resistor instead. Voltages checked- start circuit gets battery voltage (~13v), run circuit gets ~7v I have lumenition. Bulb/pickup checked and operating. I did the test with a peice of thin carboard acting as the rotor vane thing cutting the beam. When I cut the beam I got a fat, healthy spark from the coil, down the main lead (arcing across to the cam cover to test). I have new spiral wound leads. Lumenition tested as well- bridging the blue and black wires at the three-pin connector also produces spark. Spark is good. So I don't think the 7v vs 9v is the issue- unless this is what changed, and I can't see how? One question on the resistor- it's a ceramic block with a resistant wire protected by the ceramic. The wire glows red hot when it's running. The design holds it away from anything flammable so I think this is as standard, but I'd be interested if anyone thought this was a concern? So the only conclusion I can come to is that the failure is somewhere between where the main lead enters the distributor cap and the plugs. No spark seen at any plug lead. Can a distributor cap or rotor arm fail like that? It seems to be the only answer. The rotor arm is clean and good- I gave the end a light rub with fine grit sandpaper and the central button is clean. The pickups in the cap are clean too, I gave them a quick once-over as well. The cap looks to be undamaged. Will any Lucas 45D 4cylinder cap fit? Is there any difference between them? I've read of the blue cap vs the black cap- it's a S3 so no turbo. Thanks in advance (timing pun) Simon
  5. Copper would not pass inspection in Aus- at least not the inspection I had for rego as a special vehicle- a kind of enthusiast category with limited use but reduced rego costs. They would require it being removed as happened to me... That's not to say it's not safe, that's a different question!
  6. Update on my brake lines. My lines are mildly magnetic! Enought for a strong rare earth magnet to cling to them. So I think this is probably enough proof that the lines are Cunifer for my inspector, along with the email above. I also gave it a bit of a polish- to see if it looked more yellow than copper water pipe, also polished. Not conclusive, but the magnet test is all I need I hope. Cheers, Simon
  7. A small update- I contacted a Cunifer company and asked them the question. Here's the response: Hi, Simply polish it up till it's shiny, if it's Cunifer it will have a golden lustre like 14 carat. Copper has a distinctive red color. Also, in spite of what you may read on the internet, it is mildly magnetic due to the 1% iron content. You would need a powerful magnet but you'll be able to tell that it is indeed magnetic:) HTH Thank-you, Tim Beachboard Federal Hill Trading Company 195 Federal Hill Road Oxford, MA 01540 Phone: 508-987-2660 Fax: 508-987-2661 www.fedhillusa.com www.cunifer.com So thanks Barry for your early response on colour- seems like it's the only sure way. I've kept their details in so anyone else can make contact if they want- I have no connection to the company, other than thanking them for responding. Interesting that he says that Cunifer, ie not just CuNi, but with a bit of Fe in it is mildly magnetic. I'll do the polish it up test, and compare to a bit of polished up copper pipe (just old water pipe, but AFAIK that's just Cu). And if I think its Cunifer, possibly original, and possibly therefore with the Fe content I'll try some strong magnets.
  8. Thanks Steve. New lines will look great once they're done! Cheers, Simon
  9. Did you try the magnet on the known Kunifer you have in stock?
  10. Thanks Steve, and you're sure when you replaced your lines you put Kunifer in? If so the magnet test is a bust. Cheers, Simon
  11. Thanks Steve. Can you see if a strong magnet will stick? Cheers, Simon
  12. That's what I need. SJ Sportscars (UK, good website) has them for all pedals- I think some in a 'Lotus' box even! and not too much so I'll get them from him I think. Simon It's not surprising I think that there are different experiences/opinions considering the 'parts bin' methodology. Is it possible that OS delivery spec cars were Kunifer and local cars were steel? If you've seen/removed steel brake lines when doing restoration I think that's fairly conclusive that there were cars with steel pipes from new. Is there a test I can do to find out the truth? is the Ni/Fe component in Kunifer enough to make it noticeably ferromagnetic? If a rare earth magnet will stick to Kunifer but not to copper could that be a possible check?
  13. Thanks for the replies... of course if it is copper it'll get replaced. They like to replace with a steel alloy tube here, with good corrosion resistance. The inspector that failed the car runs a specialist garage that can do the work. Estimate is a fairly reasonable $700, and spending the money with the local inspector/guru buys more than just the job getting done. I'm not convinced that it is copper though- from the reading I've done british cars like Lotus were using Kunifer from sometime in the 70s, so I would have thought it would be that material from new. Can anyone confirm what material was originally used? If they were originally steel then it's more possible that the replacement was copper, as it's definitely not steel now! What I need is a way of determining accurately what the existing lines are made of... The inspector guy also said that Kunifer would have a number or marking on it somewhere, which he couldn't find. Anyone seen anything like that on their cars? He also failed me on not having rubber covers on the pedals! I'll put in an order for some from SJ. Apart from those two he was happy with the car... Thanks, Simon
  14. Hi all My S3 has failed an inspection on the basis that the inspector thinks the brake lines are copper. My understanding is that they are Cunifer/Kunifer depending on your spelling preference, and were never installed as plain copper. Is that right? It's a UK spec car, even though it's now resident in the apple isle, Tasmania Australia (home of some of the best twisties!) The inspector suggested that the lines may have been changed at some time- I can't find any mention of that in the history I have (which is not comprehensive but quite good). So- how do you identify the difference between copper and cunifer- is there a way to do this? And- did they ever build with copper lines? If so which years/models? Thanks! Simon
  15. I'll do my due diligence on the distributor... How hard is it to take out? and will it only go back in one way? It barely idles so I wouldn't think the advance/retard mech could be the problem? The ballast resistor is in there, mine had been removed too so I added it again. Really annoying that it ran so well for so long and now this! the joys of the Lotus...
  16. Hi all, I've got lumenition on my S3 and have been chasing intermittent poor running for ages. I'm considering putting points back in to remove the lumenition as a potential cause of the fault. Any opinions on this course of action gladly received! When I bought the car it had points (from the car history retrofitted) and I removed them and fitted the lumenition. The car ran fine for many hundreds of kilometers, including use as a daily driver. The issue I now have is really poor running, caused by badly timed spark. When it's running poorly if I fit a timing light the timing is mostly spot on, then when it hits this intermittent issue it is all over the place. The distributor isn't moving so I suspect the module, but they're pretty expensive to swap out if I'm wrong (and being solid state I'd think they are unlikely to malfunction, more likely to work/not work)... so my thought of points again. I'll need a set of points, a condenser, and anything else? I remember having to set the gap on the points, they are not adjustable within the distributor relative to the shaft though from memory? They sit on a pin and then you adjust the gap, and time it as usual by unclamping the distributor and rotating the whole unit? I'll dig up some simple wiring diagrams of points ignition off the web, and hopefully do the swap later this week. Cheers, Simon
  17. Hi, use this link to go to my photobucket album: http://s471.photobucket.com/user/beamishprod/library/lotus the pics are on page 5 and 6 Cheers, Simon
  18. When I retrimmed my car I made a shallow tray that sits under the armrest, turning it into a cubby, good for wallet, phone etc.
  19. I did it by running the pump to drain the tanks, worked fine. I just used a long bit of fuel hose into a jerrycan, then turned ignition on and let the pump click away. Flow was strong and fast. I then left the lids off and the hoses unconnected while I did other stuff to let vapour vent.
  20. Was this very complicated to do? I guess you need a crank trigger? can you indicate costs? I'm sick of ignition related issues!
  21. I did the same... for rego the two outside mirrors were sufficient in Tasmania, so I never fitted the original mirror back on. I didn't like it for all the reasons stated already. I spent ages trying to find a small neat mirror to use, as I'm tall the mirror compromises my view so I'm happy without. The habit to check frequently means I know exactly what time it is when driving the car!
  22. Hi, just to hijack the thread, I've had an ongoing misfire issue that I think might be the lumenition module. How hard is it to do: The car had points when I bought it, I replaced them with the lumenition quite early on. I know these units normally work or don't... intermittent issues are not likely to be the actual module failing. However if it's relatively easy to revert to points and rule the lumenition out I might try it. The reason I suspect the lumenition is when the engine is misfiring, if you use a timing light you can see that it is sparking at fairly random times. Since the spark timing is determined by a mechanical/optical process in the distributor the random factor may be in the module. I've cleaned and tightened the three pole connector. For the trial, I'll need points, obviously, a condenser? and what else? Thanks, Simon
  23. I had mine re trimmed in situ, by a professional, not me. I was watching though, there is enough of a gap (or was on my car) between the glass and the front edge of the dash to push some material (mine was leather) down the gap. Looks perfect. As long as the material is flexible and you leave enough to push down the gap you should be OK.
  24. Fantastic work John. I think the S3 fares a little better with less draw: that said after reading your post I will be upgrading my alternator soon. cheers Simon
  25. slotting the casting is a good idea, with weight saving too!
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