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  1. With the boot floor out looking from the back of the car at the far end (engine end of the gear box). Now look just to the right of the centre line. The gearbox side of where the bellhousing bolts to the gearbox face. There is a round almost flush 'button' about the size of a 20p (but round LOL). Its in the vertical plane not flat. Fiddle with that you will find it can be turned and is loose. That's what I take to be the breather.. I figured that one out when I drained the box of oil took it out of the car and stood it upright on the bell housing and it pissed gearbox oil all over my garage floor from behind that button.. I've heard comments that the gearbox can run hot but guess its only an issue for hard trackday use. Jeff
  2. The sump bolt is the big one. The temp sensor just happens to screw into the sump bolt. I'd guess if you just took the temp sensor out it would take a long time to drain and you may not get the sump full emptied. Don't forget to do it with a warm engine. Renewing the sump bolt washer each time is always best practice as well. Jeff
  3. I have new discs front and rear and with the Saturn wheels a lot can be seen and a lot of rain can get to them. Anyone any practical ideas for maintaining a good look rather than just end up with rust where the pads don't touch? Its the hub parts obviously not the actual discs themselves! Jeff
  4. Sorry to hear of your trouble Chris very frustrating and hope in 20 years time its the wedding you and your wife remember and not a lack of gearbox! Personally, people performance is very important to me. I have always worked on being absolutely honest and realistic with clients and worked on, 'Underpromise and Overprovide'. If its later than promised and its a lengthy delay then that is the outstanding memory in the customers mind. I dealt with a firm last year (Servicing/repairing garden machinery) that as standard promise 3 weeks. In my case that turned into 7. They are running a 6/7 week turnaround and they are fully aware of it. But they still tell everyone 3 weeks! These are customers they hope to see probably every year or two. As a long term strategy that's an insane way to run a business... They certainly won't see me again. I spoke to Derek Bell at the outset with my box problem, nice guy, very helpful. But I asked him three times about delivery dates and each time I found he was unable to answer with any confidence. I think Derek must be hugely dissapointed at what has happened and as frustrated as the gearbox owners who have been let down and inconvenienced. GTO Engineering, promised me 3 weeks ready in 19 days... Jeff
  5. My rebuilt box is ready and I should be going to GTO tomorrow to pick it up - three weeks after I dropped it off as promised. The clutch I have had rebuilt by an AP Racing dealer/specialist for half the price of a brand new one. I was at Donnington on Sunday and the Classic Lotus Racing Team was there with 3 - 70's F1 cars. I got chatting with a guy on the team who currently works as an Elise development engineer and has been at the factory 20 years. He said they always new the Renault box was a weak link in the V8 (as many of us know to our cost) but the car was already going to be so expensive they had no margin to do the job right. His opinion was the Quaife/Derek Bell upgrade is the way to go on a rebuild and gives the V8 the box it probably should have had in the first place. Jeff
  6. I have read that Lotus recommended Castrol TAF-X 75W/90 in the V8 gearbox and Lew Technical sections confirm this as the factories firm recommendation. At some stage this was either changed too or added as an alternate was - Mobile SHC 630M (not just 630, the M is a specific slightly revised spec, apparently) but this may now be out of production. My workshop manual quotes both Castrol and Mobile in differing places. I'm just about to get my rebuilt gearbox back with the Quaife upgrade (the Derek Bell version not being available at the moment). I also have had a new Quaife LSD installed which I understand Quaife say has no special oil requirements, Quaife say to go with the original manufacturers recommended oil. I've read that Derek Bell has suggested the Mobile as a preference for his uprated box. Any thoughts what dealers are actually using? I'm thinking it must be the Castrol TAF-X? I'm inclined to stick with the Castrol spec. Jeff
  7. Hi, 22lb feet full instructions are in the manual and quiet user friendly. In fact I'd suggest you don't go any further without consulting the manual. The one I have is on a PDF file. Give me a shout on PM if I can help any more. Jeff
  8. BBC have proved on two occasions in the past that they are reluctant to retain a programme format after someone has been seriously injured (or on one occasion killed). Both times the relevant programme was pulled almost immediately. Jeremy Clarkson has already been quoted in a lengthy interview about 3 months ago, I think from either The Sunday Times or Sunday Telegraph. As saying they are running out of ideas and he would prefer to stop before it goes stale on them. So we were already close to the demise of Top Gear in its current format. I think they also continue to struggle with there permissions at there current location. Top Gear has already managed to successfully do, 'Doctor Who' style regenerations a few times in the past since it started back in the late 70's. Cirumstances are all adding up to another major revamp. Damn shame as I love the current balance of tests, interviews and 'men behaving badly'. Best wishes to Richard Hammond for a full recovery. Jeff
  9. I've just had a V8 clutch reconditioned for
  10. Good news? Maybe its just the cynical Banker in me. But am I the only one that's is reading very neutral/negative vibes from this press release. Filter out the white noise and the hyperbole and I don't see anything positive. I do like the use of the phrase 'extended' for the delayed Esprit launch (recalling the original Esprit V8 engine project being 'extended' for about 10 years before they finally cancelled it). And 're-aligning' the workforce is another good one. At least we know the publicity department is strong and healthy... Jeff
  11. My mate did his ARDS qualification at three sisters. I seem to remember there was a written test and the driving was down to doing a competent lap time (so the quick drivers are only going to lap you once or twice in a 20 min race and not every other lap!) and demonstrating that you were basically safe and competent on a circuit. There was only a modest amount of tuition on racing lines and technique, just enough to do the required lap time. Jeff
  12. I think if you get pulled and they have you bang to rights there a lot for going for a pass in the 'attitude test.' They are real people doing there job and your attitude can help your cause or piss them off and make there decision to book you that much easier. Yes, half the time the decision might be made before your get spoken too. The other half depends on how you react and talk. I think looking a bit sheepish, acting respectful, not trying to deny the obvious and doing your, 'good kid who was unlucky to get caught with his hand in the sweet jar' act can go a long way. Jeff
  13. I thought turning the engine of was the best first course of action in response to an oil warning light. Can't find it in the manual where it says rev the bollocks of it until bystanders become annoyed. Any chance the magistrate might have seen the flaw in his defence.... Jeff
  14. Raymond Baxter the retired BBC personality/Commentator of Tomorrow's World fame, who died recently. Was a Fighter Pilot flying Spitfires for the RAF during the Second World War. He said of the Americans; 'I admire the Americans immensely, during 2 1/2 tours in Spitfires they were the only people that ever managed to shoot me down.' True apparently, but always said as a joke and his wife of some 40 years was an American. Jeff Ps. They do have a habit of arriving late though, First World War, Second World War! Maybe they have a plan to improve there track record in this regard by starting the Third World War all by themselves.
  15. Talking just about weight or gearing might be missing a more significant factor affecting acceleration times. Dare I mention the big differences ambient air temp and humidity can make to turbo engine power outputs? The same car tested on a cold winter day and then again on a hot summer day six months later, could easily result in a good few 10ths difference from what I have read. Never mind damp/dry roads and the grip offered by the road surface cold or warm tyres etc. Given these factors and the differing drivers/magazines policies on testing practice. I could easily imagine 0.5sec differences being quiet normal with the same car. The most academically honest answer I guess would be to say the Esprit V8 can do 0-60 in anywhere from 4.1 to 4.7secs. Which is slightly more time than the life expectancy of a typical V8's UN-1 gearbox! Jeff
  16. I got pulled driving like a complete knob around 1978 as a 17 year old in dad 2 ltr Cavalier. I used to race on push bikes and there were three of us in the car with bikes on the roof rack on the way to a race. Down the A6 through Derbyshire, used to be single carriageway road all the way. 60Mph limit one minute then 30 through a village for maybe 1/2 a mile and back to 60. I got stuck behind a few slow moving cars and started getting a bit frustrated. Down a steep hill into Waterhouses there is a short 30Mph section through the village. I got a chance to overtake just before the 30 and remember thinking 'sod it' and went for it. Half way through the village I was just returning to the left side of the road with about 80 on the speedo and got flagged down by a police speed monitoring setup, there were police everywhere. Got directed into a layby and handed off to another officer. I though I was dead for sure! He stuck his head through the window told me I had been clocked at 64. Then walked around the car inspected the tyres and tax disc. Told me to be more carefull next time and sent me on my way! Apparently, Derbyshire Police were running a one month scheme of concentrated heavy policing on speeding motorists but just warning everyone they pulled no bookings. Being honest, I probably deserved to have been banned. 10 years later, I was a volunteer motorcycle marshal in a national standard Bicycle race that goes through Waterhouses. The race uses a big 40 miles circuit so they run a 'rolling road closure', several Police Motorbikes accompany the race stopping the traffic at junctions with several more volunteer motorcycle marshalls in support. Its great fun as once the race has passed you then have to get past the riders and race convoy till you get to an unmarshalled junction again. Its a brilliant way to watch the race when its on such a big circuit. As I said earlier Waterhouses is at the bottom of a hill and the riders were doing 50 or so (a compact bunch of 80 or so riders on the first lap). You can't mess about going past the riders as they use most of the width of the road and will use motorbikes that creep pass as an opportunity to attack and get a tow in the motorbikes slipstream, which can affect the race. I recall closely following a Police motorbike past the bunch at full throttle hard in the right hand gutter already at more than 80 right through the centre of Waterhouses. With pedestrian policemen at a junction waving us through enthusiastically! I had to smile at the similarity to some 10 years before. Only this time it was apparently legal and I was being positively encourage by the local constabularly, LOL. Not been through there for years but I almost guarantee the presence of speed cameras on that piece of road today and from my knowledge I'd say it was a fully justified location. Jeff
  17. Sorry, can't really help. But I like your attitude: 'if I have to do it, I might as well do it right, and sort the other things too whilst I'm at it'. I'd guess you need to budget close to 10k? But its gonna be a cracker of a car when its done.... Jeff
  18. Well worth knowing. Thanks Andy. Jeff
  19. That's well worth knowing. Thanks Andy. Jeff
  20. I've used Jizer (or similiar) engine degreaser for about 20 years. I think its a paraffin based product - well its pink and watery! Available in 5ltr cans from trade motor factors. Halfords and such like probably sell it in 750cc or litres for 3 times or more the prices - I buy in bulk and save long term. Compressor and a parrifin gun to spray it on. Leave 10 minutes or so and either hose of or, very CAREFULLY powerwash. Agressive powerwashing WILL rip powdercoating and loose pain off.. Hosing down is far more controlled and does the job... I often finish with an spray on clear engine lacquer that really makes thing sparkly but I wouldn't with the Lotus and it fades white and cracks in time and is difficult to then remove. As I say I've done this with cars for 20 years, maybe routinely once ever couple of years as part of a relly full service but also in localised areas after oil leaks.. Apart from having to blow drive (compressor again) plug leads. Never had any sort of electrical problem.. I keep cars for years currently run five bought 1984, 92, 96. And I had another I ran for 21 years. Never had any problems that you could attribute to this cleaning practice. But I'd qualify that by saving very modern cars have far more delicate electrical components so I may say differnt in another 10 years time. I'd do it with the Lotus but I'd be very conservative, and carefull not to drive water 'up and in'. More of a splash and dash...LOL Jeff
  21. Aaah, yes just had another look and you must be talking about taking the exhaust off. I can see it working the sorriee.. I just though the instruction 'remove the Exhaust system' was some guy at Lotus who is a technical manual writer having a laugh and throwing a curve ball to all us amateurs... ------ Cut to scene in Lotus canteen, its lunchtime some where back in 1996 --------- - Techman Writer bloke picks up tray of pot noodle, coffee and jaffa cakes and wanders over to his mates from the preproduction V8 test car maintanance team - who have just replaced the 17th broken gearbox this week and told the Enginemanagement Bloke to have a rethink about maximum torque or they will break his legs. 'Hi guys, he says. I've had a really boring morning! so I've just written into the manual that you have to take the exhaust of the V8 to get the gearbox out! (maintenence team blokes snigger in a knowing sort of 'he's at his tricks again' sort of way)..... Techman Writer bloke takes his first Jaffa Cake in hand and says. 'And to make sure they don't realise its not necessary I've put it really early in the instuctions.....' - Scene fades as Techman writer and colleagues can no longer restrain themselves fall about laughing at the image of all the amateur mechanics fighting to take of there rusted exhausts over the coming decades.... Watch this space for further episodes and my future postings threads entitled , 'Stalled gearbox fix following slipped disc' followed a few months later by, 'Now, how do I repair massive dent in upper rear bodywork after dropping rebuilt gearbox three months ago?' B) Jeff
  22. I have an early V8 and have bought the PNM upgrade with wider rear and larger front slotted discs, retaining the Brembo calipers. I have used PNM's suggested pads, although PNM couldn't supply them at the time so I got them elsewhere. Now on paper this should be an improvement as I have more diameter and larger brake area. After 1,000 miles, for general road use I can tell you that when I push the middle pedal then the car stops.... I haven't had the car on the track yet which is the only place where I can really comment but I never drove the car on the track with the previous setup so what sort of comparision is that??? I never track day'd the car on the old brakes so in reality I can't really help at all....... One comment I can say if that initial bite isn't half as good, to be honest initial bit is rubbish compared with the car before... now I know the front pads were changed by the previous owner for the cheapest shit he could buy from the local motor shop that fitted into the brembo calipers... But then ask yourself, are we interested in outstanding initial bit when slowing down from 40 mph in busy traffic? Or do we want the brakes to perform from 160MPH to 40MPH in 100 metres after 10 minutes of hammer on a track day? My point is there is a lot of unqualified/unscientific opinion talked on LEW. People, being helpfull, make comments without any sort of proper performance bases empirical back to back tests.... Even keeping it simple there is a world of difference between the opinion of someone who is a skilled experienced long term RAC race licence holder driving an Esprit V8 around Donnington when compared with me going for a quick late night blast around Trafford Park near manchester... Jeff
  23. Sir, with respect, I think you may be handicapped by too MUCH snow in Norway! And too short a driving season...!!! Maybe in the UK we have too little snow... (My children would agree that we have too little snow...). I plan to 'track day' the car a few times a year, but at the moment I know the limiting factor to my lap times would be my own ability/confidence to drive the car smooothly close to its overall handling/performance maximum. Once I get there then it would be time for me to look for more Torque/BHP. At the moment my own confidence/experience/ability/fear is the limiting factor (and the cost of an engine rebuild, never mind my driving licence). I do however want something I CAN'T break easily on a track day -and the upgraded gearbox maybe with a modest ECM upgrade should keep me okay on that one. Jeff
  24. Standard V8 ratios - (except for the revised 1st and 2nd which is part of the upgrade shaft of course) I was very tempted by the .76 5th, but stuck with the .82 and the Renault spline.. Quaife LSD retaining standard final drive ratio... Now I have a stronger gearbox I'm seriously looking at the PUK 360 ECM upgrade to get the revised torque in the lower gears. With the uprated box I've done away with the main reason it was capped of in the first place. When driving the car, I have always been very aware of the boost being 'capped of' and not really being allowed to strut it stuff in 2nd 3rd and 4th... That extra bit of boost you get in 5th has always felt so much more 'right' for the engine/turbo package and you really do feel it should be able to do that in other gears. Jeff
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