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Alunox Manifold (G Car)

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I'm going to take the plunge on the eye wateringly expensive Alunox manifold.....   However, before I do, does anyone have one thats surplus to requirements?  Must be for a 'G' with an external wastegate.   Would be interested in full system or just the manifold & wastegate options.   I'll pay at least what you paid +postage.  (UK only)  PM me if interested.  

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There should be a new turbo manifold casting from Lotus some time soon.

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I'm not sure that's going ahead Chris, I've not heard from them for a while about it. 

I am going to be doing an Alunox group buy soon though. 

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Hope they return my manifold then :o

 

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Might be worth popping Neil an email to see where they're at with it?

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5 hours ago, Bibs said:

I am going to be doing an Alunox group buy soon though. 

In which case, I guess I'll hang on a while.... but still interested in buying now if anyone wants to liberate theirs

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I would be up for this but what sort of money are we talking? Got some plans in the back ground so need to conserve some cash. I genuinely don’t have any idea of the cost is it £500, £1000??

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£22,346.00? 

 

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Move the decimal place one place to the left...

Search for last group purchase to get an idea

Edited by 910Esprit

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Not seen much feedback on the results of the first group buy. Someone on the Esprit Facebook page had problems fitting one and there was a mention of increased engine noise in the cabin, but does the lack of feedback mean they were generally good?

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I saw lots of posts about fitment problems before buying mine. 

Was told by a few different folks how hard they were to fit and fiddly. Also never take them apart as reassembly was a nightmare. All utter tosh - was simple and easy to fit.

havent got a clue what it runs or sounds like yet - sure looks good though. Mines on an s4 though

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9 hours ago, Andyww said:

Not seen much feedback on the results of the first group buy. Someone on the Esprit Facebook page had problems fitting one and there was a mention of increased engine noise in the cabin, but does the lack of feedback mean they were generally good?

The Esprit Facebook pages is populated by a high proportion of numpties. I bailed out ages ago!

I’ve not had any problems with my manifold since it was fitted, Andy. I haven’t noticed any increase in mouse, but my exhaust is already bloody noisy.

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Hmmm - Was in contact with Alunox today as I was trying to place an order....   Not that simple, it seems, and was quoted over £3.25k (not a typo unfortunately) as it seems I needed to order as a complete system at the moment for a G car.   Unfortunately that sort of money for an exhaust is not happening.   It was unclear if I can order a system at a later date without the rear box.  

Anyone got one to spare?  Either an original cast spec (G Car) or an Alunox version.    If its original, it must be new and unused    

Edited by 910Esprit

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On 10/12/2017 at 22:01, Barrykearley said:

I saw lots of posts about fitment problems before buying mine. 

Was told by a few different folks how hard they were to fit and fiddly. Also never take them apart as reassembly was a nightmare. All utter tosh - was simple and easy to fit.

havent got a clue what it runs or sounds like yet - sure looks good though. Mines on an s4 though

As an update - I know exactly what difference it’s made - loads.......

oh my gosh - the pick up is furious now - turbo spools up much faster - it’s like night and day brutal.

1 hour ago, 910Esprit said:

Hmmm - Was in contact with Alunox today as I was trying to place an order....   Not that simple, it seems, and was quoted over £3.25k (not a typo unfortunately) as it seems I needed to order as a complete system at the moment for a G car.   Unfortunately that sort of money for an exhaust is not happening.   It was unclear if I can order a system at a later date without the rear box.  

Anyone got one to spare?  Either an original cast spec (G Car) or an Alunox version.    If its original, it must be new and unused    

That’s a big number - the manifold itself isn’t cheap £1650 - but knowing the difference it’s made I would have absolutely no quibbles buying one again. It’s a grand more than buying a cast one which won’t last anywhere near as long. Swapping the manifold is probably one of the worst jobs on an Esprit - I’d not want to do it too often - even if I did fit two in a matter of weeks

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Okay, so I'll chime in with my verdict on the Stevens Esprit Alunox tubular exhaust manifold.

1/ Customer service: Bought as new in a groupbuy, where Alunox had delayed a bit here and there, and had to rush it a bit too much, so a number of those around 40 were not exactly straight bolt on. I have Pictures and Measurements of my own, and I received pm's from other owners WHO had similar problems. That said, I tried to get help from alunox, but they never got back to me, and just ignored me. When I bought their complete radiator package system, it was unusable in technical terms defined by law. They said they could not repair it, and took it back. They then repaired it and sold it on. That's when I had steam out of my nose. My passed away grandmother still to this day offers better customer service.  -1 point.

2/ Noise and engine response: That said, I am of the conviction, that if you correct those issues with the tubular exhaust manifold, and make it fit propperly, it's by far the best there have been made to date. Response is fast, much less lag, more power, more Nm, more noise, more grunt, more of a raspy note, and finally a much faster and easy fitting. +1 point.

3/ Repeated installation etc: The talk about not being able to take it apart and then reassemble it, I cannot recognise at all. Yes, I had to pursuade it every time I took it apart, but not much of a problem. Yes, it could have better finish, and less fractions from welding etc, but it's stil a beauty to behold. It's also now dead easy to reinstall the complete system as a Whole on my car. +1 point.

4/ First time installation: As some will have read in my thread and elsewhere, I spend quite some hours to take the Whole thing apart. And some to adapt everything to suit the alunox manifold, as it later on had to communicate with a Sport300 setup. That was not just straight bolt on and forget, if anyone thinks so. I didn't expect it to be a slip on and forget solution, but it could have been made better, for example also the flex system and the support bracket, which to date does not fit my car, and as usual Alunox never returned my approaches to them, despite having paid top dollar for their business. Not overly impressed. To be honest, it seems to be a Little bit of a hit and miss affair. A negative, that surely did not have to be that. So others may have a completely different experience. Sometimes they are really great and sometimes they are not so. For that asking price, I expect more consistency. Nuff' said. in total -1 point.

5/ Performance: The Stevens exhaust manifold from Alunox works very very well, once installed. It also have capacity to collaborate together with other upgrades performancewise, and respond very well to that. A big plus. So +1 point.

6/ Chassis tube clearing: The tollerance between the point of the tubular manifold's most left point and chasis tubes, is near nill. But that would as I understood it, have been corrected in the Mk. IV version or so. And I installed a bit of heat shield on that tube of the frame as well to get better protection. All teh heatshileds on the engine Mount fits. Despite mine being very close to the chassis, it did not burn off any of the galvanizing from factory. So +1 point.

7/ On and off wise: I can now push aside the chargecooler, take off the turbo and take off the Alunox tubular exhaust manifold in less than two hours, including a break. I used smaller special nuts that does not demand the use of extra locking devices and it's easy peasy. I really mean that. A big plus. So +1 point.

8/ Longevity: Well, having used it for two years, I have rolled mine on a testbed a number of times, I've driven in ultra heavy rain (by pure unluck, not by intension), I've been on longer trips, city driving and given it the beans, and there are no holes, no craks, no problems. It fits and it performs. So +1 point.

9/ Attractiveness: Easy. It attracts visitors, spectators, frightens dogs, women and Little children begin to cry. And those WHO are in the know of a raspy brutal sportscar, they pass by and have a chat. It looks sooooo good. +1 point.

10/ Price and weight: It's very light at only 5,2 kilo. Saves 9,8 kilo on my example! Yes, it's very expensive, but so is an Esprit, and this is the one to get, and once paid and installed, you immediately forget the Price and just smile as you press on. +1 point.

Verdict: 8 points out of 10 possible. In a new reproduction of this, it may score 10 out of 10. Only time will tell. Is there a real alternative on the market as of February 2018? No, not really. Would I buy it again? Sure thing! Despite having to be prepared to pay top Money for something you must be prepared to finsih yourself, it's a MUST HAVE.

The above is purely my own experience, and I stand by my Words, can document things and am honest about it. Not trying to sunshine the Company and not trying to put them Down either. So it is now up to you if you want the by far best exhaust manifold on the market today. Note: mine is a Stevens manifold, not a Guigiaro one. They are quite different and as bodys can be different on that car depending on markets, and if you are going to use another turbo, it's worth looking into beforehand.

The rest is up to you.

Kind regards,

jacques

 

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Thanks for your thoughts/review of this Jacques.

 

buddsy

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+1 on Jacques review.  I fitted a Stevens manifold from the first group buy onto my G-car. I wanted to drop the external waste gate complexity and upgrade to a newer style EFR turbo anyway.

-Some exhaust bends required to align the Stevens turbo outlet location with the G-car fender exit, but doable.

-I had no problems with initial fit to the head studs, and it's relatively easy to access the nuts from above, even when using 13mm nuts, with a universal joint socket. A bit of a chore to remove the right front turbo stud nut as it's close to the engine which limits access. Getting the head off is now much easier.

-My (early) manifold is also pretty close to the frame tubes, I wrapped them with some radiant barrier, and so far no problem. 

-Obviously pretty, it hung on my garage wall for a while before I had a chance to install it. Not as pretty  as the new version with the fancy flanges though.

-Compared to a G-car's assemblage of cast iron, it's incredibly light.

- I don't notice any extra noise.

-Can't really address performance gains, as I changed the turbo at the same time, but turbo response is quick.

-I'm glad to see packing has improved, mine was shipped loose in a box and arrived here in the states with hardware missing out the holes poked in the box by the manifold.

So simpler, lighter, faster and more serviceable; I'll admit I clutched my wallet pretty hard before I bit the bullet on the Alunox, but in retrospect I'm happy I did.

Still a wonder to me that the Chinese can make a Stainless manifold for my WRX for 1/16th the price.....

EngineInstallReadyCrop.jpg

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Very timely as I'm fitting mine at the moment.   It would be better design and much easier to align if the inner pipe of the sleeved joints were 1/4 " longer than the outer sleeve....   However its basically on now.   I've used 12mm nuts, and the cledearance is bliss, probably can get 120 degrees spanner articulation on top nuts.   I'm hoping to get  the motor back in today but that may be optimistic as I'm supposed to be working from home....   

 

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The Alunox manifold I have is a nice piece of kit, however I found that the turbo came up closer to the engine, and as a result, I had a very difficult job finding an alternative coolant connection; the original brass Lotus item fouled the turbo heat shield. Also, one of the tubes (maybe No.3) fouled the LHS heatshield assembly, and I had to relieve one of the plates slightly. That said, if it was a choice between a cast manifold, and the Alunox version, I would go for the latter every time. Beyond that, it seems to work well, and I've covered maybe 7,000 miles since fitting it with no problems. As to whether it performs any better, I cannot say, I have no empirical evidence to back up any claims of increased torque or power.

As an aside, I think the cooling rad pack that Jacques mentioned earlier was not their finest hour. The one I had was, in my opinion, poorly fabricated, and I wasn't prepared to fit it. To Leon's credit, he took it back and gave me a full refund, including the postage, so personally, I cannot complain about poor customer service.

 

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Its fighting me all the way.   (fitting the manifold is the easy bit)

Firstly the support bracket and the attachment spigot on the manifold, I've been sent, are incompatible, support bracket expects attachment spigot to be on the left , but its actually on the right.  Not a particularly big deal but a couple of hours wasted fabbing up a new support bracket.

Secondly, the wastegate fouls the bracket that attaches the collector to the downpipes, so this needed to be 'relieved' with a dremel.   Again, not a massive issue, but irritating., especially as my old dremel broke down yesterday!

Thirdly, I had to 'clock' the wastegate orientation to get the pressure port in a useable location - this requires a 100% strip down of the wastegate (grub screws, snap rings etc) , however, there are only 3 possible orientations - 2 run just too close to downpipes and the 3rd, which I've used, is unsatisfactorily close to the chassis, wastegate vband, so I'm concerned that push fit silicone will not be upto the the job.   However, clearance and the microscopically irritating 1/16 NPT fittings, seem to preclude the use of adaptors, so this one is still a bit  of a quandry

On the plus side the 3 way wastegate, manifold and downpipe alignment is OK and all parts bolted up OK

So ran out of time to complete the job today, but not yet defeated

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