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Front Suspension - In a little predicament! - Page 2 - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
Mysterae

Front Suspension - In a little predicament!

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Indeed I have Ian :). One part of it at least.

 

In the end I drilled through the bolt (with a right angled drill, a normal drill would never fit), increasing in size to 9mm drill bit so that I could get an arrangement of M6 bolt, M16 washers and M6 nut and washers on the offending bolt. The M6 bolt was used so that it would be enough to pull the duff bolt through but still clear and not score the hole of the chassis.

 

I think it's more likely that the heat from drilling and constant lubrication loosened the bolt as I noticed it had turned before I took steps to remove it.

 

front_sus_refurb_08.jpg

 

And the result:

 

front_sus_refurb_09.jpg

 

Happy with that.

 

Just need to remove the other part of the damn bolt. This won't be as "easy" as there is no way to drill it at all.

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Well done! What other part needs removing? It looks as though you'd pulled the old shank through to me?

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Yes Ian, it's the shank of the bolt that I've removed so far. The other part of the bolt that has the threads is proving to be very problematic. I even drilled a hole perpendicular in the exposed threaded part so that I could try a tommy bar with some leverage, but that just bent my crowbar. I mean come on! I even tried freezing it and knocking fifty shades of shit out of it but it won't budge :(.

 

I can't drill it either due due to the angle. Not giving up though, but the weather will probably stop me from doing much over the next few days.

 

 

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Drill a largish hole in the footwell, sized to take one of the rubber plugs Lotus used all over the car. You will need to drill the pilot hole from the outside in order to locate it properly.

 

Then you will have direct access to the offending bit from inside the car. Then plug the hole with the rubber plug and optionally some goo. Job done.

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Alan, you can buy what are known as "short-series drill bits". They're shorter than a standard drill bit, so maybe that might help if you can't get a standard one in and 'around the corner'? Also, if space is a problem like that, the compressed-air angle drills have very compact angle heads, and I've used mine a lot in tight spaces.

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Sanj, I don't like the thought of drilling a hole in the footwell but it is an option. It would mean drilling blind from inside the car too.

 

Ian, even with short drill bits it wouldn't fit, access for this part is really limited. I have a right angled 240v drill but even that doesn't give me the right angle. I could use really long drills and go through the hole already cleared. An other option I'm looking at is the right-angle Dremel attachment and some tungsten carbide bits and just grind out for the long haul. 

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I wouldn't worry about a hole in the footwell as there is one there already for one of the suspension bolts that is refitted through the cockpit when the body is on the chassis. Worst case glass it back in or as sanj says another bung and goo as per the factory. You could always drill a 2mm hole to see if you are in the right place and fill with p38 if wrong.

If going with the long drill just use a sleeve to protect the hole already cleared.

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Ok, I've just measured my angle drill head at 85mm from back of the head to tip of chuck if that's any help?

How much space have you got?

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Thanks Malcolm, if cutting a hole in the chassis is my only option left I'll do what Sanj suggests, just trying to avoid it.

 

Ian, I'll measure up and take an image with my drill in place to see what space is available.

 

Alex, yes I'm in north Swindon. All help is appreciated, the only trouble I'm having is with this particular bolt. If that had been easier to remove this job would have been done days ago!

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Can you use some threaded bar, nuts and washers, and use the other hole to push it out??

You really are worrying me - as this is my next job on mine

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The bulk of them do come out more easily.  The last couple I've done needed little more than a tap, and one of those was an '89.  So you might be lucky...  

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Cheers sparky......where's the best place ( and cost effective ) to get a full front end suspension rebuild set from?

Would like poly bushes, shockers, springs and any other consumables that I don't yet know about

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Watford Exotics. The specialists in such matters. Oh, sorry he just said he can't do it because he's washing his hair.

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Is the hair dry as yet???

Could do with some clear guidance on a shopping list.

Cheers

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With some free time and good weather this Sunday I had another go at this damn bolt and I think I moved it all of 0.1mm if anything. Next step - air hammer & chisel! Failing that, I'm calling someone with an oxy-acetylene torch and killing it with fire.

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Have you tried using Rust Converter and allowing it to bleed along between the bolt and the car? May not work, but might break the bond?

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Not tried Rust Converter, have tried two different types of penetrating oil and no joy. I think the corrosion is just too deep in to the collar to make any difference. 

 

The very last thing to do is grind the f&*$ing collar off the chassis and get someone to weld it back on for me. I'll try the air hammer chisel first though. No pun intended but it's starting to be a right grind as all the parts are waiting to be put back on and that could be done in less than a day. 

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Rather than damage the chassis I would cut the fibreglass in the footwell and drill from the inside of the car as has been suggested.

 

Alternatively, since you have removed the leading remnant, can you get a longer drill bit and drill the trailing remnant from the front. Use a bush in the leading chassis hole guide to keep things square and avoid damaging the chassis.

Edited by sailorbob

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It was air hammer time :). The offending bit of bolt did eventually come out, but .....

 

front_sus_refurb_13.jpg

 

One step forward, two steps back!

 

front_sus_refurb_10.jpg

 

Rather than relinquish the seized bolt the entire collar came out, shearing at the chassis (rather than the weld)! That was one seized bolt for sure and I think the air hammer might have been a bit too brutal for the job :2guns:

 

front_sus_refurb_11.jpg

 

The bolt was too awkward to press out so I drilled it out then pressed it out. 

 

front_sus_refurb_12.jpg

 

The strange thing is when the collar (whatever this part is called!) is placed back where it once was, it doesn't line up exactly with it's neighbour so the new bolt doesn't fit as easily as it should. Measuring and comparing it to the other side of the car, I would say it's been misaligned from the factory or previous repair and the bolt for this lower wishbone as just been smacked in. That would explain the difficulty in getting it out.

 

Anyway, I'm not too phased by this as it's a simple matter of getting the collar welded back on in the correct place.

 

front_sus_refurb_14.jpg

 

Is anyone a good welder or know of one around the Swindon area :)

 

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Jeeze, what an absolute nightmare of a job this has become!  :no

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