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The story of Little Red Riding Hood


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So small update. Today Little Red Riding Hood got the new coilover suspension kit. That should hopefully tighten things up a bit. As far as I know, she's had new dampers and springs many years ago, so

A few late afternoon winterpics when darkness fell, hence the bad resolution and grain. Just to show the fitting of the new Wheels. Kind regards, Jacques    

Made a quick stop at this working mill. Old used up stones behind the Esprit. This type of landscape with curvy narrow hilly backroads are my favourites for taking a good fun drive in the Esprit.

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Jaques really love your thread you are such a perfectionist but...

please change those m8's for bolts that are 10mm shorter🤪

Keep up the work love it!!

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Hi Cor,

Sure, will do. I agree, they look terribly long and out of place. For now I need to bleed the brakes. I will circle around town today and see if I can find a one-way valve so I can do it on my own.

The two bolts are bought as original bolts. There are 3 lenghs: 30,34 and 45mm. I undid the medium ones, and the ones I bought from one of the usual suspects, were too short... So I opted for the long one. As I am still adjusting things, and may possibly readjust to a final setting of shims and shimplates rear, I will install shorter ones, right before reinstalling the funny maze, aka heatshields. And shorter bolts are lighter ;)

I did have new brake pipes ready, but they turned out to be too short, so cleaned up the old ones and reused. I'll be working on the brakes more later on, with some mods to make them stop better and bite harder, so I'll probably replace them at that point.

Kind regards,

Jacques

Nobody does it better - than Lotus ;)

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Went on a drive on my favourite back roads today, to see how the new bushings, geo-adjustments, deeper lower front spoiler and suspension plus a few bits and bobs performs. I've yet to see how it performs in very fast curves, but for back road driving and a zip on the freeway, this goes a long mile.

The following is my driving report on the new setup.

So, what was it like?

In a sumarization: A vast improvement, to say the least. Try to follow me here on the list below.

- less crashy.

- firm, but not super hard.

- controlled, damping and rebound.

- ride quality remains.

- more stable at all speeds: low speed, average city speeds, countryside speeds and full on speeds.

- more stable going over bumps and also over potholes.

- easy enough steering, despite more caster.

- much less roll in corners.

- what I percieve as more grip.

- less dive under braking, including hard braking.

- less lift during hard acceleration.

- slightly more efficient braking.

- more stable and predictable during corner entry.

- more mid corner stability.

- more direct steering input while feeling less wobly and more surefooted. Let's call it a bit faster and more positive.

- improved road feel and more planted.

- better traction (grip) during acceleration out of tight corners.

- less weight transfer to outer front corner when cornering.

- to a degree a negation of the pro-dive setup.

I will of course test some more, fine adjust and write back to what I think.

Notes: I've had a ride in a similar car installed with polybushings (not LOTAC), and LOTAC suspension package - Bilstein dampers and Eibach springs. While being good, this did not show the same extent of same propperties. An example of this is the big brakes I've installed before last year. These were supposedly the biggest and near the meanest I could get at the time. And being legal as well. So, I got a great deal of better braking performance installing these. But still I had a clear view of these not being what they should be (as in my own personal scale). I then tried a somewhat similar car, and here they were doing a better job. Slightly, but never the less a bit more bite and feel. Now, while having ordered another brake master cylinder and some more effective brake pads, going with the same brake setup as last season, to work them with the revised suspension, bushings etc. have revealed, that there are more to it, than I first noticed. The brakes are definately a bit more efficient, displaying better feel, a bit more easy to control or dose, and while there are improvements to be made still, overall they are now better than what I had and what I have tried on another car(-s). This just goes to show the old saying that it's not each part that is making it better, but the sum of all parts working in coherence.

Another example is the level of perceived tiredness as in body musculature I will get after an intense drive. This level is now lower than before, because for example the car is more controllable, which in my brain translates to less vibrations, less steering corrections, less power being used to maneuver. So I now have the impression, that the car is more flickable and more capable and I spend less energy in controlling it at that level, than before.

This also tells me another thing:

That the valving and polishing in the dampers must be fairly good, to achieve less micro-vibrationss which otherwise leads to tiredness. So that's an improvement.

Surely there are much more to be done and gained, but for now, I've sat a milestone for myself with respects to the car's abilities, which I see as being further enhanced. And keeping a fair amount of comfort, weather one likes that or not ;) I generally don't.

Now, my own car have been running on original suspension, while having been renewed years ago, it's still functioning, but clearly not to a degree which is disirable. Over time one would expect some sagging of springs and dampers, so in effect lowering the rideheight. This was not present on my car with the old original, albeit renewed, setup as rideheight was 170mm front and rear. So, in my view, a certain degree of these qualities of the alterated collective performance is due to the state of old parts. But the vast majority of the gains I have perceived, are due to the technological steps these parts express in a symbiose of manners that benefit very much the original design of the Lotus Esprit.

In total not a revoloution, but definately a good step forward. Very highly recommended.

I for one, am amazed how much driving ability is possible in a 30+ year old Lotus Esprit design.

And compare that to say a lousy tesla, and it becomes very clear how bad their modern crap design is. Add to that their sick idea of autonomous cars... Crap.

Nope, give me a 30 year old Lotus Esprit. Any day. Little Red Riding Hood is delighted. Man, can she dance.

Kind regards,

Jacques

 

Esprit May 2020-3.JPG

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Nobody does it better - than Lotus ;)

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks. I am a little bit in doubt if I should install the clitch project now, or wait until I have collected the remaining parts for the gearbox itself. I am a little bit tempted to do the clutch now, as it would leave me better for knowledge if something needs to be corrected.

The optimised gearshift project is also under way, but I need my parts returned tome from England, where they have been in "quarantine" for some time, to be copied.

Meanwhile, I am now thinking of trying to make a super gearmaster, based on the late style Mk. 3 Lotus shifter, and something entirely different. I need to have a good thorough look at how the late Mk. 3 shifter works, and go from there to see, if I can transfer the way the reverse is selected, into a mech that is more positive, more slick and more precise with a nicel "click".

I also have a little bit of trouble separating the collets and spring inside the late stype end cover, for a different surface treatment I'd like to do.

Meanwhile I have now experienced twice that the til over stop the fuel switch is bouncing up, while I am driving. Bad roads.... Any good ideas to make it stay put?

More later.

Cheers,

Jacques

 

Nobody does it better - than Lotus ;)

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Hi Jacques,

If it's the rollover fuel cut switch giving you trouble due to rough roads tripping it inappropriately, it may help to relocate the thing nearer the firewall and rather centred left-right in order to take it off-axis from the direct, vertical line of impact. Better that someone with P. Eng credentials weigh in though, you do want it to remain functional as intended.

Cheers

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That’s pretty impressive, Jacques. We’ve got some pretty shitty roads in Thanet, but never managed to get the inertia switch to trip yet, which is potentially dangerous in ‘normal’ driving.

Margate Exotics.

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agreed, but if possible, I'd prefer to have it where it sits now. Original placing.

Maybe there are someone out there who can attest to this being too old and becoming a little sensitive or if there's somethig that be done to this specific original unit.

Kind regards,
jacques

 

Nobody does it better - than Lotus ;)

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The nice people who lay new asphalt seems to drive 4wd jap scrap, and they probably even sit down on a memory foam pillow, while their 90 aspect tires with low pressure, run unnoticed over their uncredibly bad roadwork.

Yesterday it happened with a positive speed over 109 km/h. Not typing which, as Danish police likes to read forums. Anyway, annoying as it is. Maybe it's just worn and became more sensitive as there is less friction and it moves easier?

Kind regards,

Jacques

Derek: is there somthing I can do myself to overcome this?

Kind regards,

Jacques

Nobody does it better - than Lotus ;)

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I am not sure how easy it is to get into the switch even if it is repairable. Also, some cut off switches use a magnet to hold the ball bearing down, I don't how those fail.

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