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I'm restoring my S1 and the front suspension height is way higher than the rear. The rear looks good but the front looks too high to me. I thought it was because it didn't have the windscreen in it but having fitted that today it didn't make a lot of difference. I still have to add the bonnet, radiator, spare wheel and interior but I can't see it dropping that much.

 

Anybody else noticed this during a restoration? The front is not adjustable unlike the rears? Very confused.

 

Paul.

Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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Same for me too with my S3.

I even started to wonder if I had the wrong springs.

However, at the Donnington meet last year, looking around, many look the same.

Mine settled after around 1000 miles or so but I still was unhappy so in the end, I removed the rubber dampers at the top of the springs. Dont know if thats an option for the S1 though.

Still looks a little high, but I have done something about it, so I feel better!

 

My gauge is the bottom of the doors - that line should pass just above the wheel centre badge. 

 

Have you measured the chassis to ground distance? How far off is that?

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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Same for me too with my S3.

 

With S3 & later cars you have to make sure the wishbone to chassis bolts are tightened with the wheels on the ground or at least with the wishbones horizontalish. :ermm:

 

Tightening with the wishbones dropped lower forces the body higher when lowered to the ground & eventually ruptures the bushes.  :thumbdown:

Cheers,

John W

http://jonwatkins.co.uk

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The suspension bolts need to be tightend with the car loaded as per the manual which will make it sit at the right height. Until you have everything reinstalled and bolted back on, 2 occupants and full tanks of petrol (or maybe half, need to look it up) I wouldn't worry about the hieght as you wone't be able to set it correctly.

 

Pete

Pete '79 S2

LEW Miss September 2009

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Okay. I've not tightened the suspension bolts up yet for the reasons you mentioned so I'll plod on and see how it looks at the end...

Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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  • 3 years later...

Hello All,

Like Paul I a finalizing the restoration of my S1 and the front suspension height is way too high. There is a gab of 12cm between the tires and the wheel arches.  Is the car really going to drop that much when I install the windscreen ,interior, bonnet, cooling fluid and petrol??  I can hardly believe it??

I hope I did not mix up front and rear springs??  I am really confused.   All suggestions are welcome.

Thanks,  Christof

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I felt that mine was also way too high to the extend that the steering rods touched the swaybar and blocked the steering.

But after a few days sitting on the wheels and with some stuff in the front trunk (tools, spare wheel...) it looks good now.

If you reuse the original springs there is not a lot you can do wrong....

Wolfgang

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Changing the anti roll bar bushes has quite an effect on the ride height, too. As has been mentioned...leave everything loose and then tighten up when loaded on the wheels. 170 mm is the height specified between the datumn points and the ground, iirc.

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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When I'd finished restoring mine and had everything back on it was still too high. I had reused the original springs. I sent my car down to SJ Sportscars and I had the anti-roll bar on upside down plus they replaced the original front springs. When it came back it was at the correct height.

Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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I am reusing my original springs.  To check, I removed the anti-roll bar and dampers.  It hardly effected the height.  I (90 kg) sat down on the nose of my car and it dropped like 2 inches, but it was still too high.  I will post some pictures tonight.  Something is clearly wrong, but I dont see it ....  :(

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ophanging1.JPG.711e21c65eda3dc88fa7d4e117015301.JPG

5 inches between tire and wheel arch.

ophanging3.JPG.8bac0c3e239630b7f59007e5bd4be984.JPGophanging2.thumb.JPG.f49ec6c813436a51e4cdbc6aa44b4ca8.JPG

Something is wrong, but I don't see it :(

Is it normal to have these thick washers between body and chassis (front and rear)   Not that it makes much difference in height...ophanging4.JPG.ac91c691ec68e2e4f5a230925791c68e.JPG 

Edited by Kleynen
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My car is a right hand drive.  So I guess that makes it European?  Although the car has a USA electrical cable loom.  Lotus probably just used what they had available...

I reused the existing spring.  The car was at the correct height before the restoration.

I start to wonder if there is nothing wrong with the pivot points of my lower wishbones?  Tomorrow I am going to compress the springs and check if these lower wishbones can freely rotate upwards...

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