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Rich H

To Esprit or not...

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It's all computers these days, you're green now :thumbsup:


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

OK Ta, I'm a bit of a confuser biffer...

Cheers

Rich


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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FWIW: I went through a cam belt change for the first time last summer on my 90 SE. Wasn't really that hard to do, nothing that can't be done on a weekend with hand tools and colorful use of language.

Get one of those little 1/4" socket sets, you'll need it to get into tight spaces. Grind down an 8mm hex wrench to loosen the vacuum pump, one of the hex bolts is right behind a pulley. Some instruction sheets recommend putting a wrench on the crank pulley and bumping the starter to loosen the bolt, but that scared me - might break the starter, and if the wrench comes loose, it can flap around and tear things up. I put the gearshift in 4th, locked the parking brake to hold the crankshaft, and used a brass mallet to tap on the wrench on the pulley bolt to loosen it. Worked fine. There isn't room to get an air wrench in there.

Change that belt, immediately. With the 4 pot, life begins at 5k, and just gets better. You don't want to worry about the belt when the power kicks in.

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Nice one thanks! If things work out the way I hope then I think I'll throw it at a specialist to deal with the cambelt to start with.

I hate crank bolts... we have a history - OK it was on my old Porsche but thats not the point! I basically had to get it so hot that the galv melted on the washer...:dizzy:

I want to be able to find 5k without worrying! Mind you it'll probably take a while for me to get brave enough....!

Got some pics of the Elise so I'll post up an ad.

but a taster:

P6210011.jpg

P6210012.jpg

P6210014.jpg

Cheers

Rich

Got a couple more of pics of the Esprit looks like scanned in prints?

I dunno how old they are but here you go:

car4.jpg

car1-1.jpg

Going to be busy over the next few days but I'll drop you a line soon Carl, just as soon as I can plan more than 48 hour sin advance!


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Is an AA/RAC inspection worth doing or are these too specialised for them to be of value?

Ta

Rich


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Get a specialist (or indeed a member on here who has a clue) to look it over. A generic AA/RAC inspection is going to miss the usual suspects I'd have thought.


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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Thought as much - thanks. Just been throgh their T&Cs and they just look at stuff and road test it a bit, no detailed examinations or ECU downlaods or anything so not much point - I can do all that!

Just checked LEW - not much choice other than Murray Motors in Edinburgh dry.gif unless anyone knows of one near Moffat??

Is the Esprit checklist from LEW worth getting?

Any one local fancy a trip out to have a look with me for some beer tokens?:dizzy:

Thanks

Rich

Edited by Rich H

Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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I think the LEW checklist is well worth the couple of pounds you get it for. It lists absolutely eveything you want to look at and you then have a full summary of the car to chew on before you take any decision. There are loadsa details you may not think to check without the document.

Edited by RV_ABZ

1980 Peugeot 504 Coupé V6Ti

2000 Peugeot 406 Coupé V6SE

1996 Lotus Esprit S4s

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Shame it's not free, we should create a free version on here really.


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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Rich, your best bet is to find someone on here who'll tag along.

An AA wont find anything other than bald tyres etc, they probably wont pic up anything Esprit related because it'll be their 1st time as well, probably.

Finally any inspection worth its salt will be on a lift with a Lotus know all and a torch pacing up and down underneath.

You could strike a deal with a seller where they take the car to a dealer/speciliast and you agree to buy it based on basic criteria.

Your main lookouts are going to be on the expensive stuff. Manifold, exhuast, engine condition, gearbox condition, bodywork / paintwork, interior, steering, brake performance, acceleration performance, radiator, suspension, heat shields, fluid levels.

You shouldn't need a check list, I've just typed that in 15 seconds, the basics of a normal car inspection - the LEW thing is just a bunch of check boxes and other stuff you should be doing with ANY car. Only issues are the quirks with those bits, plus you have no previous experience of past performance of other Esprits which is why it's ALWAYS worth looking at a few.

Dont be totally affraid of buying blind - yes inspections are good but keep 2-3 grand in the reserves and you should cover most stuff.

From what I hear you're likely to start working on it anyways making it a good car - I did a similar thing to the GT3 - I've spent a lot on it but it's an absolute diamond, life's too short.

If this is the car you want get it at a good price, do the work, and enjoy it - its nice to get a bargain, I did on my little Pug I just bought but it doesn't always pan out that way, they are too rare.


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OK thanks guys, I'd love to get someone out who knows what they are looking at, but Moffat is a bit remote by the looks of things (Is there a members loction map?)

The chap is a Loti enthusiast I think he said he has had 10 previous Loti of various guises and seemed very keen that the car goes somewhere it's going to get used rather than polished, this has been verified by the guy that put me onto him in the first place.

He also seemed to be on my wavelength as far as the cars go, basically he is possibly in the same boat, we don't' know each other and are both looking at swapping a known car's issues for a complete set of new ones.

OK the Elise should be cheaper to fix though!!

He is also, like me, in no hurry to rush things through, he is 2 hours north of me so multiple visits won't be too arduous. The 924 came from Devon... had to overnight! How about a weekend in Devon dear...:innocent:

He is helping run the Moffat classic car show this weekend and her family are coming round :sorcerer: so I hope to get more info next week.

I'll chuck a couple of quid at LEW, while it might be quite basic or obvious it'll help stop me getting mesmerised by the fact it's an Esprit and it's shiny...

Which is normally what happens when I buy a car :wallbash:

Cheers

Rich

Edited by Rich H

Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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I bought an S4 which had been layed up outside for 7 years.

Its had:-

New suspension (lotus kit)

New brakes (ebc pads and disks)

New Exhaust (needs manifold now)

Cam belt change

New Tyres

New Injectors

New Coil packs

Second hand fuel tanks

New Fuel pump

Okay that list sounds horrendous but the whole lot only added up to 2.5K in parts and if your handy with a spanner a lot of it can be tackled yourself. A lot of bits are available from alternative sources to Lotus at a reduced cost and in some cases enhanced performance.

Really expensive bits are Exhaust manifold (£600-900) Dependent upon what you go for

Fuel tanks, ony because they are a pain in the arse to get out and difficult to find a set with no holes

Bodywork is my big issue really though now, basically the car has been stood outside in the sun covered in stickers for 7 years so the paint is completely RUINED!!

Happy hunting and once you've got one you'll love it.

My Mechanic hates mine with a passion but now its running well even he gets the point!!

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Thanks - good to know!

Happily the manifold was changed last year so that's one headache I hope has been put to bed already, also the tyres and brakes are all fairly recent and low miles.

The rest is TBC really, but apparently everything works as advertised, it's just the cambelt that worries me. I'm not overly worried about maintenance, I just want a car that basically works but can be improved by spending some time on it.

I'm after a new MOT and to get the cambelt changed before I start, even if it costs a bit initially, so I'm basically starting from a known point.

The plan would then be a good service: complete fluid change (Oil, coolant, chargecooler, brake/clutch fluid) filter change (Oil, air and fuel) sparks, leads, + anything else I can think of also a good going over with wire brush and POR15 to deal with the inevitable crusty bits underneath.

But I'm getting ahead of myself - I haven't seen this car yet and I am trying to remain subjective.... it's just hard not to get excitedwhistle.gif

I still remember the day I collected the Elise and drove it away from Paul Matty's (Yes it was a bit on the expensive side)

I couldn't believe what I had just bought (Felt like I had been trusted with it but would have to give it back) and I was driving a proper sports car not a tarted up shopping trolley...

I want that again! thumbsup.gif

Cheers

Rich


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Hi Rich,

I did once went upto Carlisle to look at an Esprit for an new owner but car turned out to be a wreck and owner didn't buy it. It's about 3 hours drive each way and took best part of a day out from my workload. Depending on my current workdload I might be able to come with you and have a look at this car for you. Weekdays would suit be better than weekends though.

As for cambelt and service work call NW Lotus. They are doing introductory rates of £38/hour. Based in Prenton, JCT 3, M53. Phone number 0151 608 2233. They can also do inspections for you. They may be able to travel to do inspection if this help but you will obviously need to cover their costs.

Ask for Andy, he's worked on Esprits for last 17 years and will no doubt become an Esprit specialist once word gets around.

Regards,

David Walters

Edited by superdavelotus

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Wow, nice one! :sorcerer:

I'm waiting for the guys reply to the pics of the Elise see if he still likes the idea.

I'll sort out coming to see Carl and yourself too so I have a vauge idea what I'm looking at.

I'll go up and see him for an initial visit see if it all adds up, make sure I'm not wasting everyone's time.

Then I'll sort out an inspection of some description and might take you up on the offer!

Good news on the NW lotus too - cheap rates are always good!

It's an hour and a half away so not too bad, might try Phoenix Motorsport in Blackburn they are a bit closer.

I've used them for the Elise for years and they are very good, but I dunno how well they know Esprits.

Cheers

Rich

Edited by Rich H

Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Hi Rich,

I travel to Preston quite regularly and it's only an hour away. Straight down the M6 & M58 into Liverpool.

Let me know how you get on.

David

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Sold your Elise yet? :sorcerer:


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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Still working on the swap at the moment... why you in the market :sorcerer:


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Big thanks to CarlC today for letting me tear him away from his building work to take me for a tour of his S4, sadly it's awaiting brake work so we couldn't go out for a spin.

I'm sold, that was never in question but SWMBO, while still skeptical in the extreme, doesn't actually hate them...:wine:

So I took that as the green light to get one. :shuriken::lol:

Cheers

Rich


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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HI Rich

Welcome to the forums and you will meet great owners here whom are passionate about these lovelyy cars.

I actually wanted an SE for my first Lotus but ended up buying a brand new Elise 111s Mk1 (1999), but what a great car it was it still didn't scratch the Esprit itch and ended up selling it to fund an even more outragious Lotus 340R (of which I still have), even that wan't enough to stop me lusting after an Esprit. I remeber just after picking up my 111s seeing a yellow S4s (or equiverlant) in New York city and it looked so awsome and I knew I would have to have one oneday.

After trying many Esprits I was lucky to find one of the 64 Sport 300 and never looked back since, it is a more complex car than the Elise (or 340R) but worth trading up to and although I did enjoy the Elise I don't think I could go back to one now (although of course I still have the 340R).

These cars can be expensive to maintain and most will be older than your Elise but I believe they are definatley worth the effort and offer a richer ownership experience as a full on useable supercar.

I also love your choice of the 924 Turbo of which I had a model of years ago :wine:, still think it would make a great cheap trackday toy.

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I didn't have much of an Esprit itch but I think I've caught something off you lot...:wine:


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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Erm, yeah, oh that. Keep using the cream, it'll clear up in no time! :wine:


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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I suspect that it won't be cured by actually getting an Esprit either... ah well - sorry darling :shuriken:

924 turbo is great fun and would be fun on track but the gearboxes are pretty shonkey the synchros on 1 & 2 have almost totally vanished on my car, it's quick in 1st and it's quick in 2nd (Well quick for a 30 year old car!) but put the 2 together and it's pretty slow. :lol:

Rebuild is at least £300 and no promises, replacement boxes are all the same too:thumb :wine:

It's interesting to swap between cars, the 924 has a dogleg box, 1st is left and down reverse is left and up. Makes the first junction interesting when I'm half asleep in the morning and been driving the Elsie for a while. :shuriken:


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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I'm just waiting for the chap to get back to me so I can go see the red one in Moffat :getmecoat:

I plan on going up myself first and having an initial shuftie, if it all looks good then I'll see how things go.

After being shown around by Carl and you guys' help on here I'm fairly confident about what I'm looking for and I'm happy with oily bit access for getting at the engine also where else to be looking (Rear valance and body mounts in the boot in particular) I'm going to be looking for a brand new MOT before I buy it (At least I could drive it then) and it'd need a cambelt ASAP then I can properly service it myself slower time and change all it's fluids.

I'll then report back here and see what you make of it all.


Lotus Esprit S4 - Work in progress

Porsche 924 Turbo - Parts chaser

Smart Roadster Coupe - Hers

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