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Just in case anyone else was interested (or stupid enough!) in doing something similar I thought I'd go through what it has involved to go from a 5 stud BBS to 4 stud Compomotives for a dry sump Turbo.

 

Having been through innumerable hoops and shelled out more than I'd ever care to admit to (sober) my advice is stick with the BBS if you can!

 

I would never have even considered it on any car other than an 'Essex Spec' dry sump Turbo. But with a Panasonic roof stereo, full red leather and air-con, in 'For Your Eyes Only' Monaco white, a set of Compomotives was always going to be the perfect finishing touch - providing the whole process was reversible.

 

First off, I had to source some wheels and four stud hubs. With so few available I had a very weak hand when it came to negotiating the price! I eventually managed to persuade Barrie to part with his spare set and sent them off for refurbing. Fortunately, the sale included the very rare centre caps but didn't include hubs. It turns out the original anodised finish is impossible to achieve on used wheels, so polishing is the only option. UK sportscars had a gold set for sale with hubs for a King's ransom but unwilling to sell the hubs separately so I ended up buying both sets. I figured I'd be able to sell the gold set one day.

 

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The offsets at the rear are very different to the BBS wheels. As the Compmotives are so dished at the back we'd need the shorter Essex spec suspension arms to get the wheels located properly. To be fair to Mike at Lotusbits he was the only person I spoke to who was on to this from the word go. Everyone else would have just changed the hubs, fitted the wheels and hoped for the best. Lotusbits did have some Essex suspension arms but I chose to have some new ones manufactured which has been done to a very high standard complete with original zinc passivated finish. I was offered adjustable upper and lower links but as the lower arms are visible on a G Turbo I wanted the original look. We also needed to modify the rear trailing arms. Once that was all done it was time to fit the hubs. The trouble was, it turned out that only one of the hubs was correct for a dry sump. The decision was made to have the correct one copied so while we were at it a batch was manufactured and hardened, exactly as per the originals right down to the chemi black finish. Naturally that delayed the whole job by several weeks. Plenty of time to fantasize!

 

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Take two:

 

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This time, things finally started coming together.

 

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I'm still looking for the right wheel nuts, the originals are also very hard to find. So fabricating some new ones is being looked into. I'd still like to find some short bolt-in metal tyre valves and would ideally like to replicate the original anodised finish which would mean have new wheel barrels made. I spoke to several wheel manufacturers about that at the Autosport show. Not too horrendous cost-wise either but no-one was able to offer the rolled edges as per the originals. Something to ponder for the future. But for now I just want to enjoy the car as it is. A proper Essex-spec Turbo Esprit at last!

 

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Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

your wheels put mine to shame, I need to find a bottle of brasso or something.

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The wheels look great and actually look "deeper dish" at the rear than the BBS wheels. So I see it now sits on a set of Pirellis Jonny.......is that the way it's staying? I wonder how it drives on those - I'm guessing it will be a harder ride........but I'm also guessing you'll have to wait until March to find out. Are the old Goodyears going onto the Gold set of wheels?

Nice work!

Edited by stephenwhyte
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I haven't driven very far on the Pirellis but so far, so good. I'm running them at higher than recommended pressures and the steering feels so much lighter at parking speeds it's amazing. I think all non-aesthetic areas will be much improved on modern tyres and I have a plan to improve the all-important '81 'look' too.

 

Sizes are correct front and rear, I really like the 235 section rears, even though they're not a perfect match for the fronts (P600 rears, P6 fronts).

 

I think the Goodyears will end up on the silver and black set and the Pirellis on the gold set - a set for show and set for go is the idea!

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Sounds well thought through - roll on the show season so you can get the car out and about. I had the same Pirellis on my old Turbo - but always wanted a car with the more bulbous Goodyears.........such a shame people are having to depend on using/keeping old ones instead of being able to buy new. The Turbo I'm buying still has its original Goodyears which I have been told should be ok to use........time will tell

I like the idea you have of having a set of silver and a set of gold - can't be many in that fortunate position! Enjoy and look after her

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Jonny

What can I say.........fantastic!

Do you know of any other original center caps anywhere?

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Truly the knees of the bee.  Great job, and a great example of what our collective obsessions can achieve!

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Huge congratulations on getting there in the end.

 

The car looks truly wonderful on the period Compomotives.

 

Well done.

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Cheers Barrie, I'd still be on BBS's without your wheels, no other sets have come up for sale since.

Glad you approve.

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//Whispers very quietly so as not to cause upset//

Struggling to see any difference apart from colour...

 

But very pleased that you're pleased. :thumbup:

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No need to whisper Advantage, I'm very aware that 99% of the population wouldn't be able to tell the difference.

 

Much like 99% of the population can't tell the difference between a dry sump Turbo and Turbo HC or between Puligny Montrachet and Blue Nun.

 

The finer things in life are wasted on most people!

 

:harhar:

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Nothing wrong with Puligny Montrachet, it's really not that bad but I'm totally with you on a nice drop of Blue Nun.   :wine:  

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Got to flavour the gravy with something and it would be criminal to waste Blue Nun. :D

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Jonny. That sure is one fine looking Esprit. I'd never get bored at staring at that. Stunning.

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Thanks, definitely not bored of staring at it yet!

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looks fantastic but have certainly put me off doing anything similar(as if)  :unworthy:

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There were several times when I wondered WTF I was playing at!

 

It has been quite a pain to do properly and it's not over yet, there are still a few things to sort out.

 

The thing is, an Essex on BBS is unthinkable, so is a Copper Bronze dry sump, with the spec my car is in, I put it in that catagory.

 

But it won't cost as much for the next guy. Lotusbits made jigs of the Essex rear top and bottom links and made a few spares while he was at it. He also has a few sets of rear 4 stud hubs which where impossible to get before this. If you have some Compomotives it's relatively straightforward* to do now.

 

*terms, conditions, hidden costs and unforeseen hurdles apply!

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yes .looks fantastic .pure in white with the red trim.Mike

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Looks stunning. The perfect looking Esprit. Even though Compomotives were originally anodised I actually prefer the polished look! Nothing wrong with a little bit of bling if tastefully done. I've even considered having the lower links chromed...or is that a step too far?

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