Elise intake camshaft - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-11-2019, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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My ‘05 Elise has check engine light on so couldn’t get it inspected. Had it sent to lotus dealer and they said the intake camshaft has excessive wear on the lobes. Has anyone run into this? And does a cost to fix of $4k sound right???????
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-11-2019, 06:12 PM
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Did you maybe google elise camshaft? Jesus.... And 4k is on the very high end.

2007 Exige S with almost every track mod...
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-11-2019, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by kfennell View Post
Did you maybe google elise camshaft? Jesus....
It's like saying, has anyone heard about this Facebook thing?

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And 4k is on the very high end.
I'd say more than on the high end. More like in the stratosphere. Must be a dealer price.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-11-2019, 08:28 PM
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You can replace it for less than $300. Not hard at all.
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-11-2019, 09:12 PM
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See last entry.



Note to new Elise & Exige Owners:


1. These cars have large (i.e. dangerous) blind spots. Multivex mirrors are NLA, but RLS (Really Light Stuff) offers very good tape-on replacements.


2. The horns are way too weak (quiet). There’s an inverse relationship: smaller the car, louder the horn needs to be.

Get something such as a Stebel Nautilus.

Stock: “Excuse me”


Stebel: “HONK! LOOK OUT!”

Remove the stock horn; replace with louder.

(I drive with my finger on the horn button in any traffic. Iffy situations, my headlights are on.

Stay to the left of traffic, i.e. avoid passing on the right if you can.

Stop way behind trucks, SUVs, etc. Some have blindspots >50’. )


3. The early cars came with misaimed and dim headlights. If you drive at night, convert to HIDs. While better than stock halogen bulbs are available, HIDs throw more light. Stay around 5000k.


4. Ensure your car has had the work required by the recall for oil line fittings done. You could lose an engine and/or spin in your own oil.

5. The best transmission lube I’ve found is Redline MT-90 plus a little Power Punch Extreme Gear Oil Additive. (Note that it takes two changes to get rid of the previous lube.)

a) Early cars have wobbly shift towers. Look up Stan’s Mod (bolt and spacer; http://www.billswebspace.com/ShifterReinforcement.pdf) and

Re-Enforcer long thru bolts that terminate under car and tie down the tower:
https://www.inokinetic.com/lotus/re-...y=Transmission

These (lube, mods) make a huge change in shifting.


6. As per some engine builders on these sites, wait AT LEAST 20 minutes after coolant has reached full operating temp before engaging cam switchover.

For street cars, consider removing one or both oil coolers. Some cover them.


7. Rear toe-links can loosen and break with disastrous results. You can check tq periodically, or use Nordlock washers. Best is conversion to better engineered brace, such as BOE’s InoKinetic’s for two examples.


8. While under the car with panel off, look around for hoses and wires chafing their way to failure. That’s how this was found:
https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f311...-u-tube-47232/

9. The stock radiators are prone to leaking where the end caps meet the metal part. Keep an eye on this. Most of us use single-pass all-aluminum radiators.

10. When your wheel well liner comes loose, skip the lame plastic rivet and use Well-Nuts instead.

11. Life will be better if you disable the auto-arming alarm function on the earlier cars. You won’t have to press a button to start the car. Instructions:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f320...ramming-70940/


12. These cars cannot be left off a Battery Tender for weeks at a time. Unless dead batteries are a particular joy of yours. Buy one right away. There are numerous threads here about which ppl use and like.


13, Some on this site are a bit obsessed with hockey pucks for lifting the car. Don’t use these. Too hard and slippery, generally, and too small a surface area. Use a piece of wood, as your hero does.

14. Visit the Uber Thread

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f3/e...ow-here-25131/

15. Most parts on the car are made by Toyota and others, so buying things like a/c compressors, engine parts, etc. is wildly expensive when purchased thru Lotus.
Toyota dealers, auto parts stores are way less expensive.

16. The soft high-grip tires on most of our cars lose much of that grip when temperatures drop below 50 F. I know of too many ppl who spun their cars when not remembering this. I use hi-performance all-seasons.

Note that many summer tires cannot even be stored in temps below 20 F.

-----

Plus, “How to bleed brakes”:

https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f101...brakes-241138/


How to Search:

For future reference: Don't use the search on this site. Simply use Google and end the search text with "site:lotustalk.com". E.g.
Transmission Fluid change what bolt site:lotustalk.com no space betw site:lotustalk.com

05 elise (BOE Rev300 supercharged, SSRs, shift tower mods, Multivex; HID hi/low beams); 05 Corolla XRS. Past '72 Elan Sprint (I restored), Lotus 7 w/X-flow, TT Supra, Bugeye Sprite, BMW 2002 & 2002tii, '65 GTO.

Driving Tips-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...art-1-a-49665/
Moss Emergency Line-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...cy-line-36631/
Bleeding Brakes- https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...-brakes-241138
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 06:23 AM
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Just to bring this full circle for the OP, yes, this is a very well documented and known issue. Many users of this community have done hours of research, posted theories on causes and logged their fix/installation experiences here. We would suggest you go to google, search the issue and you'll quick find a ton of information, including cost information (likely). Sorry you had to discover the issue this way - good luck getting it fixed.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 06:27 AM
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Originally Posted by kfennell View Post
Did you maybe google elise camshaft? Jesus.... And 4k is on the very high end.
Maybe not quite as diplomatic as I might have tried to be (note 'tried'), but a valid point. @Cnm2205 , these cars have been in the US for 14 years now. Some have 100,000+ miles on them. This board has been active (initially as EliseTalk) for longer than that. All of the behaviors of a US market Elise are pretty well documented here at this late date.

If your car is doing something, chances are beyond excellent that there are at least two threads about whatever it is, whether it's normal or not, and alternatives for what to do about it.

A weakness of this forum is that we have stickied posts, but no real organization for them. I'd like to see something like the "Book of Knowledge" at CrownVic.net, where really good informational and how-to posts are in one place organized by functional area of the car.

In the meantime, Google is your friend. My standard technique when I need to find out about something is to do a site specific search in Google. Example: "oil cooler" site:lotustalk.com. The top return on this is the very active "what do I do about the fact that my Elise over cools its oil" thread. This behavior is widely believed to be related to the frequency of intake cam wipes on Eliges, as a similar issue has not been observed on 2ZZ-GE engines in other vehicles.

Last edited by steelypip; 04-12-2019 at 06:32 AM.
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 06:52 AM
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I've replaced 2. One with OEM that lasted 7K miles. Went with MonkeyWrench racing intake cam here https://www.monkeywrenchracing.com/p...0-intake-only/. Labor cost was 6 hours time. If someone is telling you it takes more time than that, move on to someone else.

In addition, I installed an oil temp and pressure sensor as I believe the issue is caused by oil being too cool when the engine allows you to jump on the high cam. I can confirm that when the water temp gets to 160 (the point at which the engine allows cam 2 engagement), the oil is way too cool.

My water temp/oil temp numbers are as follows:

Cold start and go - ambient temp mid 50s F.
Time----------- Oil Temp
4 Min 14 Sec , 120 degrees F
5 min 27 Sec = 140 degrees F
7 Min 33 Sec = 160 degrees F
9 Min 48 Sec = 180 degrees F This is when I would get on 2nd cam

At 4 minutes 14 seconds, water temp hits 160, which is when the car will LET you engage 2nd cam, however it takes another 5 minutes before the oil is warm enough, in my opinion as I wait for 180 degree oil temp.
iana likes this.

"If I've passed you on the RIGHT, you are in the WRONG lane!"

Last edited by JFHughes08088; 04-12-2019 at 10:28 AM.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 08:42 AM
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$4k!!! holy crap, that is ridiculous. Where are you located? that job is a 5-6 hour job, plus, cam, rocker arm set, and maybe a valve cover gasket.

Best of luck to you. if you need any advice or help on this, feel free to shoot me a pm.

T.J.
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 11:24 AM
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I was told that this was a $1000 repair job. How can it be 4k??
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 12:05 PM
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I was told that this was a $1000 repair job. How can it be 4k??
Even $1k is high - this is a great intro job for anyone just starting to work on a car. You don't have to pull the rear clam, and none of the actual work is hard. It is well-documented, and can give you the confidence to work on more projects.

So $1k isn't bad for paying a shop to do it, but most of us would spend more time driving back and forth to a Lotus shop than this repair actually takes.

"Lots Of Trouble; Usually Serious"
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 01:38 PM
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@Cnm2205
When I need an intake cam, this is the one I'll get.
https://www.boefab.com/collections/e...am-stock-grind

Shhh...Secret Squirrel
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 02:03 PM
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Folks --

I am sorry if this is hijacking the thread, but it seems relevant . . . Can anyone tell me what the differences are between the BOE hardened stock-grind intake cam and the MWR hardened stock-grind intake cam, other than price? (It looks like BOE is $480 and MWR is $459)

BOE:
https://www.boefab.com/collections/e...am-stock-grind

MWR:
https://www.monkeywrenchracing.com/p...0-intake-only/

Thanks!

-- Mike
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 02:29 PM
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The is no difference. It's the same cam

"If I've passed you on the RIGHT, you are in the WRONG lane!"
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 06:55 PM Thread Starter
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Hi thanks for replying to my post on the ‘05 Elise camshafts. I am located in Massachusetts....I had to bring the lotus to the lotus dealer bc no one around here was willing to “mess with it” do you think it’s an easy fix for a mechanic now that I know what’s wrong with it? Before it needed a diagnosis run on it
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post #16 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-12-2019, 10:29 PM
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Hi thanks for replying to my post on the ‘05 Elise camshafts. I am located in Massachusetts....I had to bring the lotus to the lotus dealer bc no one around here was willing to “mess with it” do you think it’s an easy fix for a mechanic now that I know what’s wrong with it? Before it needed a diagnosis run on it
It's a Toyota engine -- so any mechanic that can work on a toyota engine should be able to do it.
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post #17 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-13-2019, 05:48 AM
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It's a Toyota engine -- so any mechanic that can work on a toyota engine should be able to do it.
Don't follow that logic too blindly though - had to help a local owner flush his oil after the Toyota dealer insisted that 5w30 was the correct oil. I stand by my previous statement that this is a great DIY project, and I also am convinced that DIY is the only way to make sure the person working on the car knows anything.

"Lots Of Trouble; Usually Serious"
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post #18 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-13-2019, 05:58 AM
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Dealer list on the cam and gasket is over 850 bucks. I could see with a very high rate and generous service time it getting close to 3 grand, but 4 is over the top.

Where in Mass are you?
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post #19 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-13-2019, 06:01 AM
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Don't follow that logic too blindly though - had to help a local owner flush his oil after the Toyota dealer insisted that 5w30 was the correct oil. I stand by my previous statement that this is a great DIY project, and I also am convinced that DIY is the only way to make sure the person working on the car knows anything.
IT is the right oil for a Toyota.

I doubt that any damage would occur from running 10w-30

Still, point taken.

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post #20 of 27 (permalink) Old 04-13-2019, 06:53 AM
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+1 on yikes @$4k

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cnm2205 View Post
I am located in Massachusetts....I had to bring the lotus to the lotus dealer bc no one around here was willing to “mess with it”...
Locals may be curious to know what dealership this is.


AM of NE perhaps?

because racecar
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