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five minutes a day fixing my lotus


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And now for some good news...   in the distributor department. It doesn't look better just because it's new. It's also better. Time to ditch the ballast resistor wiring and select

These cars are so inexpensive. They look great out and about. .. But they have their weaknesses.   But everything cam be fixed. Almost everything.

Your going to need some PPE for your assistant 

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The big ends I used are Vauxhall vx4/90 (late model) but they have oil feed holes that are not needed..no problem there.

Mains I used Land rover series 3, but only 4 of the 5 sets of shells are the right width (not a problem at £15 a set) and slight alterations required.

They need a central oil hole drilled in half of them, the locating tang is 1mm too wide so I used a fine file to reduce it and the rear bottom shell needs a notch to allow oil to the rear oil seal.

As I say they are on trial and I will see how it goes.

....and now the disclaimer.....Please dont use these and blame me if it all goes bang!  Just letting you know what I have done.:P

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1 hour ago, tom kilner said:

I thought maybe I could use tin cans and milk bottle tops  - the price is right😉

I have tried these, and they do work but have a limited life if you don't get the oil consistency right, I would recommend something along the lines of molasses or W90/95 and I can confirm the savings involved are enormous!

....but for goodness sakes don't actually start the engine!😂

 

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Can you imagine the exhaust smell though? I thought olive oil and anchovy tins might do the job nicely. And an engine rebuild every 100 yards isn't totally off the scale for normal lotus forum member behaviour.

I wish they'd made the engine easier to get out though.

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  • 1 month later...

Looks a bit like a p.o. hasn't been using enough anchovy oil for top end lubrication:

IMG_20191229_143440.jpg.8f6f7672d776bbc29aca56b96cfebcbb.jpg

and the  corresponding milk bottle top:IMG_20191229_143559.jpg.530e8a54036075c82544683c96e14228.jpg

The other liners and pistons look ok. This one's number 4. Surprising one's so scuffed, or is this normal?

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Yes it's  the low point on the cylinder wall, - a bit historic as it's polished up?

I don't think my car ever lived in a hedge though, and although the engine block was swapped in the 90s, there's no sign of disuse in the mot mileage since then,  or of a head gasket swap - the gasket was holding fine when I took it apart. Could this damage even be 20k miles old?

I imagine I'll need one new piston and liner, but still to measure the others up to check if they're useable.

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On 07/01/2020 at 19:40, EXCEL V8 said:

Have you tried getting the water jacket plug out yet!

I think I've got that out ok - I'm going to bundle it all together and go up to LB next week and see how much I have to give them before they'll let me go home. I imagine they can measure the crankshaft bearings and recommend suitable main shells... i won't tell them about the vauxhall big ends because they won't like it.

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9 hours ago, EXCEL V8 said:

That's the one!

Pete

How about zap it with a mig - I'm amazed how the sudden heat breaks the bond between different metals. the steel wire won't stick of course, but the shock will still happen. Might pit the plug, but you will have a machine that could clean it up I'm sure😀

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

I've been mentally preparing for refitting the liners - paint stripper on the old grey sealant,  disc brake cleaner on the black stuff,  alcohol on the operator

 

IMG_20200415_120953.thumb.jpg.8a74edde49636acc0c632e88e189f43c.jpg

And next I'm going to drop them into the block to check "nip".IMG_20200415_122017.thumb.jpg.f12674fc3427a944c326d7c6fa61fc74.jpgProbably less than this.

On the right is the replacement sleeve from lotusbits - covered in glue- whereas mine were rustier but pretty glueless.

 

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Do I need a feeler gauge that measures less than 1thou?

Or use the 1thou strip and compare drag?

Also should I swap the liners(and matching pistons) around for best height match?

And what do you do if the levels are wrong?🤯

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If you need a 1 thou feeler gauge you've got problems!  You need to "bracket" the clearance - if, say, a 3 thou feeler gauge slips in but a 4 doesn't you pretty much know where you are - or you could go mad and buy a depth gauge! 😉.  You can certainly move liners around to get the best overall nip.  Mine are all 0.004" on one side of the block and 0.0035" on the other.  All I've got to do now is get the main bearing bores round instead of egg-shaped! 🙄.

Pete

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Interesting read on the engine rebuild. I wonder what I'll find when I get my unit out. I'm not putting a time frame on when that might be though. 

Tony 

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