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Has anyone powered-coated their dampers? - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
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Mark Blanchard

Has anyone powered-coated their dampers?

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Hi All,

I'm fitting Bilstein dampers to my Esprit, but the finish on them looks thin. Has anyone powered-coating dampers to protect them? Would POR-15 be better?

Dampers.jpg

Edited by Mark Blanchard

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How come they are not the 2 step adjustable ones ?

I waxed mine (spray on snotty wax) but the bottoms have already started to corrode - I treat them as consumables.

There was a time when I thought I could keep the car looking ace underneath - POR15 helps but on things that move like dampmers and springs, they always seem to find a way in !

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I went for the wax-oil option as well. There will be lots of stones and other objects impacting them so a flexible protection seemed sensible.

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Mark - I think they were 80 squid a pair iirc....

Dont hold me to it though

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I've just fitted mine, the coating looks lovely! Not sure about yours Mark, they look sinister!

post-1-127264889577.jpg

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Yes, they are sinister. They don't look much like Bilstein to me :lol:.

I put wax-oil on my old dampers but they started to rust through after a year or so.

Dampers and springs on my car are somewhat over due:

PA160215.jpg

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They certainly don't look like Bilstein, blue/yellow is pretty much their trademark.

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What were the part #s ?

The springs look OK, but the dampers (if I were a betting man) are the old PN's - you might as well get the Lotus re-adjusted setup.

Where did you buy from ?

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Without sounding too much like a fanboy over the Lotus suspension, I'd take the factories word over Geoff's but it's your choice to make. The factory stuff isn't expensive and Lotus do have a reputation though.

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They tend to give the correct ride height, the issue with previous equipment is shocks were not upto scratch over the years.

Most of the ride height issues are the fact the old cars look too low becuase the suspension has sagged over the years and people didn't fit the new stuff correctly.

I'd like to see pictures of cars with the new stuff and their owners not happy with the ride if that was the case.

Bibs show us a picture of your car - go on...

When I was at CAT driver training the chap who took 3 of our Esprits around noted the 2x S4's there were sprung/damped softer and could cope with the roads better, but mine was much mroe suited to fast corners as there was less body roll and a tighter over all setup.

As fanboy (you can tell i've just found out that strikethru button) Bibs says it's upto you.

I'd cut them in for the Bilstien ones and just sit them on the lower platforms - Call strattons and you get 10% off as well thanks to TLF.

Edited by Jonathan

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The following is from the site finishing.com if anyone wants to have a more detailed look. The way I read it is that by powder coating you apply dried paint to the part and them put it in an oven to bake. Under the heat, the powder liquifies, cures and goes very hard. Same is true with POR 15 but it is cheaper and if you try to do it yourself, you wont fall out with the wife when the oven is in use. Also if you go to the POR website and check out the 2 pack, you will see a much better colour range than you would find at Frosts.

"Powder coating is by far the youngest of the surface finishing techniques in common use today. It was first used in Australia about 1967.

Powder coating is the technique of applying dry paint to a part. The final cured coating is the same as a 2-pack wet paint. In normal wet painting such as house paints, the solids are in suspension in a liquid carrier, which must evaporate before the solid paint coating is produced.

In powder coating, the powdered paint may be applied by either of two techniques.

The item is lowered into a fluidised bed of the powder, which may or may not be electrostatically charged, or

The powdered paint is electrostatically charged and sprayed onto the part.

The part is then placed in an oven and the powder particles melt and coalesce to form a continuous film.

There are two main types of powder available to the surface finisher:

Thermoplastic powders that will remelt when heated, and

Thermosetting powders that will not remelt upon reheating. During the curing process (in the oven) a chemical cross-linking reaction is triggered at the curing temperature and it is this chemical reaction which gives the powder coating many of its desirable properties. "

Cheers

Ralph

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Thanks for all the advise. I'll have a chat.

Most of the ride height issues are the fact the old cars look too low becuase the suspension has sagged over the years and people didn't fit the new stuff correctly.

I think you're right, lots of the old X180's springs are sagging now. Here's what the car looked when it was new, with the original suspension and correct ride height. It's probably the same height with Lotus's recommended Bilstein dampers.

Lotus_Esprit_X180_Red_Ketteringham_Hall.jpg

Edited by Mark Blanchard

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On the original question, powder coating process involves heat. You would certainly need to remove the rubber bushes, don't know about the internal valving, but it's not something I would do.

Shock absorbers, everyone has an opinion, but don't scrimp you'll only disapoint yourself.

Incedently I had my springs powder coated, they look real sexy, nothing worse than shiny new dampers and rusty old springs.

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Regarding the dampers, I got the wrong end of the stick, I thought they were Bilstein dampers and Lotus springs. It's the other way round, Lotus S4s dampers and Eibach springs, my mistake not Geoffs. I understand he's also spoken to Brian Angus about this for advise.

Edited by Mark Blanchard

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Posted 01 May 2010 - 07:20 AM

...When I was at CAT driver training the chap who took 3 of our Esprits around noted the 2x S4's there were sprung/damped softer and could cope with the roads better, but mine was much mroe suited to fast corners as there was less body roll and a tighter over all setup.

As fanboy (you can tell i've just found out that strikethru button) Bibs says it's upto you.

I'd cut them in for the Bilstien ones and just sit them on the lower platforms - Call strattons and you get 10% off as well thanks to TLF.

This post has been edited by Jonathan: 01 May 2010 - 07:20 AM

That softness could also be the result of the dreaded body cracks and "bust-out" of the rear bobbins. I've noticed after repairing a few cars here, how much firmer the suspension becomes even though the springs and dampers weren't changed.

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That softness could also be the result of the dreaded body cracks and "bust-out" of the rear bobbins.

Hi Danny,

I've had the car checked over and the body cracks on my car are surface cracks and the rear bobbins are ok. Thanks for the info.

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