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1981 S3 front lower suspension arm polybush problem - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums - Official Lotus Community Partner Jump to content


1981 S3 front lower suspension arm polybush problem

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I recently decided to replace the front suspension bushes on my '81 S3 to polyurethane ones from SJsportscars. I've stripped and cleaned the whole suspension and brake assembly, and managed to fit the 2 poly bush halves into the lower wishbone OK, but when I came to fit it to the chassis pivot, the bushes were too wide by about 3mm and no amount squashing would get them to fit along with the 2 washers supplied, which I presume go either side of the bush to stop it moving along the pivot axis.

I rang SJsportscars for some advice and they said to grind down the bush to fit - surely that's not advisable as it's bound to affect the way the poly bush works.


Any suggestions or tips on how to fit lower wishbone to the chassis please ?

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Taper the poly, in fact there are some flats on it IIRC.  You can either:

Put the arm partially in place (below the final position), taper the edges of the washer and push the washers in.


try to put the washers by the sides of the bushes but slightly above the bush, then push the bush upwards.


Both methods may need a jack to push bits up with great force, pry bars to adjust positions to get bolts through, tapered punches to get the washers and bushes to line up once roughly in place.

It's an awkward job and at more than one time I considered reverting to rubber metalastic type, but then thought about how much effort it its to get those into the arms, 

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Thanks Andy - I've tried putting the arm in place without the washers, hoping I could push them in, but there is just too much overhang of the poly bush (about 3mm either side). I could possibly get 1 washer in by moving the polybush along the pivot tube a bit, but then there is no way I'd get the second washer in.


I thought the flats on the bush are to make room for the top lip of the lower link. I could try tapering the bush, but I think I'd have to remove a lot of material to make that work.

Edited by geo
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