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Old 08-06-2011, 03:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Weight Reduction Europa S2

Hello everybody,

me and my father are racing on a 1969 Europa S2 at historic race events in Germany. Our problem is that the car is quite heavy. It wheys around 720-730 kg (1587-1609 lbs). This is even more than it was in 1969 as it came from the factory. In the papers is a weight of 660 kg (1455 lbs) given.
I could imagine that our car is heavier, because there are a few bodywork modifications (wheel arches). But can this be more than about 5-10 kg (11-22 lbs)? It also has a roll cage of about 40-50 kg (88-110 lbs). The engine is Renault 807 crossflow. Is it heavier than the original 697 engine?
We already reduced the car's weight a bit. It had 740-750 kg (1631-1653 lbs) on the scale, before we removed the second seat and some other details.
We would be allowed to have 615 kg (1355 lbs). Where do we get these more than 100 kg (220 lbs)? Does somebody can tell me something?

Kind regards

Stefan

P.S.: I attached a picture of our last race in Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium),
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Old 08-06-2011, 06:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi Stefan,
Your car looks really nice!
I understand your concern. My street car with dry sump and full interior (but no roll cage or fire bottle, of course) weighs 1660 lbs with me in it! I don't know what your rules or budget are and I certainly don't think I could find 200 lbs. but I'll just make a few comments:
1. Your driver's seat looks pretty heavy. If it's as heavy as it looks, you might consider a fiberglass seat. I guess you need a passenger seat!?
2. I wonder if you really need or want the boosted brakes.
3. I think I would do without the carpet and upholstered dash, crashpad, and tunnel.
4. In one of your pictures, you appear to still have the window lift motor. Do you need that? I didn't see a window, but if you have them (have a motor and no window?) you could replace the glass with lexan. Quarter and rear windows, too.
5. I would get rid of the emergency/parking brake bits. (can you have rear discs?)
6. Do you need an alternator? How long are your races?
7. The letters that spell LOTUS are MUCH bigger than stock! Just kidding!

I don't know if any of those suggestions are practical for you. Maybe they might give you some ideas...

Good luck!
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Lithium Ion battery allowed? save 20-40lbs
Steel muffler/piping? use titanium instead?
Headlights/turnsignals needed?
Fiberglass drivers seat as suggested above might help.
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Old 08-07-2011, 04:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Probably a lot of weight in the custom bodywork. Your car is what the Europa should have looked like from the factory. Who ever did your bodywork is a very good designer/artist.
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:00 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Swap out the brass radiator for an aluminum one. If you don't need the windshield defogger or interior heat, get rid of the heater core.
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Old 08-07-2011, 08:22 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have to say that is one great-looking Europa. Good photo too!
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Old 08-08-2011, 10:13 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Hi,

you are right. The interior gives some possibilities to win a few lbs. Window lift motor, upholstered tunnel, carpet. Also the passenger seat. But it's already swapped against a kart seat. Parking brake is eliminated, too. Battery and brass radiator are good, too. Maybe we can reach less than 700 kg

Thank you. I would be pleased to read more

Stefan
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Old 08-08-2011, 01:40 PM   #8 (permalink)
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If an aluminum flywheel is available for the Renault engine, it would save weight and have the added advantage of increased acceleration due to significantly reduced rotational mass. Similar (though smaller) gains can be made with an aluminum altenator pulley.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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If it isn't required by the rules and it doesn't make the car safer, faster, or handle better, either get rid of it or replace it with a more appropriate part.
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Old 08-08-2011, 05:33 PM   #10 (permalink)
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You might also check into (if you haven't already done it) replacing the heavy steel bolts, nuts and washers with forged aluminum. Overall (where it's safe to do so) it can save pounds of weight.
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Old 08-09-2011, 04:28 PM   #11 (permalink)
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the weight of your car is a little unnerving. Do you have pictures of the engine compartment and the interior? it would be hard for me to determine where that much weight was added without them. Mine is about 1150lbs. heavily worked mind you but 1100-1200 is attainable. also, what wheels do you have. much can be saved with custom wheels. the more pictures, the better. photo everything and I will see where the builders went wrong.
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:37 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by EuropaFan View Post
You might also check into (if you haven't already done it) replacing the heavy steel bolts, nuts and washers with forged aluminum. Overall (where it's safe to do so) it can save pounds of weight.
I wouldn't advise this. The only aluminum bolts I know of (which doesn't mean they aren't available elsewhere) are some aircraft bolts, but these are not made for high strength applications and I have only seen a small number of them. Most of the places you use a bolt, you need the strength. The few places you might save some weight with an aluminum bolt and nut would not get you much savings. Some people like titanium (some are super-tanium) bolts. They are strong enough but I doubt they save much weight.

I prefer aircraft AN or MS spec fasteners but not because they save weight but because of their design and quality control. They are a lot of trouble because you have to measure the grip length of the pieces you are clamping since they are only threaded enough for the nut. You also should use the AN or MS washers because they help you "adjust" the grip length of the bolt. Since you don't have any threads in the shear area, it increases the shear strength (relative to standard hardware store bolts).
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Old 09-11-2011, 12:55 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Hi there,

I attached two pics of the engine and the interior.
The engine compartment does look nicer now, after we had to improve the engine. The hole frame is now painted in a nice and clean grey and every part will be cleaned and some of them also painted in a nice colour. The gear box and the engine are cleaned up and nothing looks like it did before we took out the engine. Unfotunately, the engine is not mounted, yet. But when it is, I'm going to show you the result of our work.

The carpet in the car is light and the second seat is a seat of kart. The window lift motors are dismonted and makrolon windows are planned. Also the hand brake flew away.
I think the engine compartment is reduced on the necessary things. Maybe you can show me some superfluous parts. Some of the massive steel parts are perforated now. Not so far, that it could be dangerous, but it helps to win a few gramms.
In the front boot is nothing more than the battery, the cooler and the radiator, the towing eye, and the tubes for cooling the brakes (light and felxible).
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Old 09-11-2011, 06:24 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Looks like you still have the factory steel engine pulleys; replace those with aluminum alloy pulleys, that will save a few pounds. If the coolant overflow cannister is stock, replace it with an aluminum one; that can save a pound or two.

Doesn't look like there's much else in there that can be replaced. As far as replacing nuts and bolts with forged aluminum, that's useful for non-heavy-stress related components like accessories, cannisters, etc. Not for things like suspension components. Although I use forged aluminum lug nuts on my Camaro which work fine.

Let us know the final weight you get the car down to!
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Old 09-11-2011, 06:51 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Your addfitional weight is coming from the roll cage.

weight reduction idea:
- aluminium fuel tank from banks
- stock valve cover with double sheild removed, your aluminum cover weight a lot
- if you use the aluminum oil pan, return to the stock, it is easy to increase the capacity with hammer, a much lighter
- keizer wheels
- I don't know the brake you are using, and regulation, but disc Wilwood 6.5 pounds can fit, but you will need racing brake pads.
-Aluminum radiator, located in the front.
- Did you replace cooling pipe inside the car? stay small 1 1/4 max.
- parking brake
- heater (weight a lot)
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Old 09-11-2011, 12:32 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Iím in the process of building my Europa for racing in the US. Not able to comment on my final weight yet but did notice in your attached pics that there are two steel braded hoses and I assume those are for an oil cooler. Generally speaking, steel braded hoses are very heavy, are they required for the class of racing you are in? Are fiber reinforced hoses a legal and safe alternative? Can you make those hoses shorter?

In the first entry in this thread, ~1650 lbs, is that with driver and fully wet (oil, fuel, water)? Gasoline (petrol) weights around 6.5 lbs per US Gallon. (Sorry do not know the liter weights but would guess ~ 1.7 lbs per liter?) So a full Vs. empty tank can make a difference. Also, how much extra oil are you carrying with the oil cooler?

Have you corner weighted the car? Would be interesting to know the heavy corner and what could be moved. By just reviewing the pics, looks like you could loose a few pounds but not too much. Good luck

Question for this community? Is the cage in Stefanís Europa SCCA legal? It looks very under caged to me?
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Old 09-12-2011, 04:38 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I don't believe that cage would be either SCCA or NASA legal in the United States. I'm not sure if it would pass under vintage rules.
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Old 09-12-2011, 06:14 AM   #18 (permalink)
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The car was on scale with 1675 lbs with 20-30 litres gasoline, oil and water, but without driver. I guessed that about 25 lbs of gasoline could be subtracted.
After that, we were very shocked and began to reduce weight. But I'm not sure, how much is already reduced. I think in this moment could the weight be around 1565-1585 lbs...(without fuel)

I don't know, how much oil is kept by the oil cooler, but our engine will be mounted into the car in the next one or two weeks and after that I'm able to tell you, how much oil fitted into the whole system. I think the standard is around 5 litres, but it is noticed in the engine's workshop manual.
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Old 09-12-2011, 06:51 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Although I use forged aluminum lug nuts on my Camaro which work fine.
That's a new one on me, EF! I've never heard of that. Don't think I'd try it either.
Just did a search and it's not as uncommon as I thought. IF you were to use them, I would get the ones with the steel inserts.
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Old 09-12-2011, 07:51 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I was re-looking at your motor bay pic and noticed several items that are different from my Europa. Not sure if it is changes due to different years or modifications. And I not saying any of these differences are bad, rather just different than what I’ve seen so far.
1) the horizontal bar that crosses the motor bay and connects the rear coil over shocks, it looks to be of a different construction than mine. The one on mine is very thin gauged “C” channel.
2) there appears to be extra transaxle mounts bolted to the frame between the coil over shocks and end of frame. On the right hand side, it is just behind/below the muffler in the angle of the pic.
3) the rear most transaxle mount appears to be bolted in. Of the two Europas I’ve closely looked at that bar was welded in place.
4) the exhaust header you have looks very nice but the muffler and bracket look heavy to me. Of course hard to tell from a pic.
5) the parts of the frame that are exposed (frog legs) appear to be completely boxed in. I think this is a really good idea as mine are open “C” channels. But boxed in frames do weigh more.
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