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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #102

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Any update on your build...it looks good. I am so far behind this is embarassing. :(
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #104
Don't worry, it's not embarrassing! We all get sidetracked and busy with life and these sorts of fun projects go onto the back burner. Mine has been in fits and starts for sure, with a lot more time sitting that actually working on it. A huge part of this is that the car is at a friend's house, about an hour drive from my house. (I don't have the space.) So it's not like I can just go out to the garage after my kids go to bed and plug away little by little on it every night.

But yes, I do have some updates!

First, my friend moved. So we had to move a non-running Exige, spare, engine, lift, tools, basically his whole garage to his new place. That sucked and was a ton of work.

Once we got it out there, it sat idle for a bit as he spent some time organizing the garage and getting stuff set up again. Which was fine cause I was busy with a bunch of work travel and stuff to Ireland and Singapore.

But the other weekend we passed a major milestone, removing the old engine and transmission. Here are a couple of photos of that process. We had already removed the head previously while trying to diagnose the engine before realizing a new engine was the easier solution. We yanked the engine and transmission out together from the top, with the clam off of course.





 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #105
Tomorrow I'm heading out to his place and the plan is to install the new engine and transmission. Fingers crossed we make some progress and get it in. The hope was to have the car ready for the West Coast Lotus Meet on May 15-19th, but it seems like we still have a ton of stuff to do, not to mention smog and register the car and crap like that.
 

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If all you need to do is drop trans and engine back in, install rear clam, and fresh fluids, I believe you can make it...especially if you have a solid work day with little to no interuptions. ?

Nice job!!!
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #107
Will post more later but let me just say that dropping the engine in with the transmission attached is not for the faint of heart!
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #108
Yesterday was a pretty big day and we hit another milestone on the car of getting it's new heart installed.

We started the day transferring over the one wiring harness from the original engine to the replacement engine. Since the original car is a 2007 Exige S with the drive-by-wire throttle and the new donate engine came out of a 2005 Elise NA, we needed to include the original harness. Plus, the original harness had been modified for the BOE300 kit and we didn't really want to re-do all that work.

So, we painstakingly removed the old one and transferred the new one over. Then took a little bit of time to clean up some dodgy crimp connectors and stuff done by the previous owner and add some heat shrink and electrical tape to clean things up. However, we still found two random disconnected wires that we're not sure what they go to. Someone in the Facebook group said they're "Original wires for MAP component of the tmap sensor. Not referenced on Exige S or REV." so I guess maybe they don't need to be connected to anything.



Then we moved onto the clutch and flywheel. The plan was to get the engine and transmission mounted and then drop the whole assembly into the car. The previous owner had included a brand new ACT clutch when I bought the car, so we already had that kit. We prepped the flywheel surface and got busy installing it with new ARP bolts. Then the clutch and pressure plate went on. So now we've got a new clutch, cryo treated gears, and a quaife LSD! Should be a nice setup for this car.







Then new throw-out bearing, which was included in the clutch kit:


Then we finally got the transmission attached to the engine and properly torqued all the bolts. We put the whole thing on the hoist and crossed our fingers that it'd support all that weight! At this point we debated whether we install the laminova oil cooler before we put in the engine or not. But, the problem was we didn't know precisely where to mount it so that the included lines would reach, so we decided to put in the engine, attached the lines, and install the laminova afterwards once we knew how far the lines would reach. Yeah it would have been easier with the engine out but hopefully this will ensure we put it in the right place.



Lots of strain on that eye bolt, we were watching it closely!



Maneuvering this beast into place wasn't easy! We had to move the jack stands to clear the legs of the hoist, and then we had to remove various engine mounts to get it to clear everything. Even doing that, it was rotated to far back towards the firewall so we just had to mess with it until we got it orientated pretty close and then we started attaching various engine mounts which helped to get everything aligned. Plus a floor jack to push it around a little bit.







End of the long day and it was installed, woo hoo!



We still need to do the rear engine mount though because the threads into the transmission for one bolt were messed up and we need to do a helicoil to fix it but we didn't have any. It was already 10pm so no luck going out to get what we needed to fix that until the next day.

Anyway, it felt great to get this part done, but still a lot to do before the WCLM. Not sure if the car will be ready by then or not, but just happy we're making some progress after a long break!
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #109
A few tips for anyone planning to do install an engine + transmission combo all at once:

- First, you really need two people
- Remove the rear engine mounts for maximum clearance
- Think about removing the ECU from the firewall as there is a pretty high risk you'll bang into it with the engine
- Have wiring harness already on the engine
- Remove the side engine mounts for clearance
- As you lower it slowly into place, try to get the side engine mounts lined up and installed first, then lower into position and engine should rotate downward to align other mounts
- GO SLOWLY
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #111
My friend on this project thinks I'm crazy to reinstall the FM antenna but I still listen to the radio a lot when driving to/from the track or events! I think the 4 oz of wiring is a worthwhile weight investment. ;)

 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #112
@munozt got the laminova installed today! We didnt know how long of lines we were going to need so we opted to install the engine first then measure. This proved to be bit of a pain in the ass given the lack of space but he made it happen.

We were both recently at the West Coast Lotus meet (sadly, we didn't finish the car in time for that, but it was close) so we took a little time off working on it. But we're close now and I can practically taste the exhaust! If all goes to plan, we'll fire it up for the first time tomorrow night and put the bodywork back on once we confirm everything is working and there are no leaks.

Also noticed that the elise-spares.com laminova kit comes with a sandwich plate with a thermostat included. We removed that, based on other threads we read on here. Hopefully that's the right call? Seems you'd want the oil to warm up as quickly as possible using the laminova and stay at that temperature always.





 

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That’s a huge milestone!!
CONGRATULATIONS!!!
: )


Great to see the progress with this!
It inspires me to keep going with mine. — Currently, struggling to resolve ABS.
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #117
Well, the day at finally arrived and last night I drove the Exige for the first time since this project began over 2 years ago!

Huge thanks to @munozt who provided not just the garage space but also a ton of expertise for this project. I literally could not have done it without him. He's already working on another Elise project (only needs a new engine - no crash damage).

We still have a few minor things to take care of with the car but it actually moves under it's own power and is fast as hell with the BOE300 supercharger. But hugely rewarding to go from a wrecked car with a blown engine to a fully running machine! The fact that everything is generally working is great. We have some little stuff still to get it sorted but it runs well and feels fast.

As I reflect on the many hours spent on this project and the associated frustration at times, the biggest thing I’m struck by is how much I actually enjoyed the process even more than the outcome. Part of this is because now that it’s finished, I have a very difficult decision to make as to which I should keep -- the blue Elise or the silver Exige. As they say, sometimes it’s the joy in the journey rather than the destination.

More to come...!


 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #118
Wanted to let folks know that the car may be for sale soon-ish. The history of the build is well documented here. Though it'll have some further upgrades by the time it's for sale.
 

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2005 Lotus Elise; 2007 Lotus Exige S; 2012 Porsche 991S
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Discussion Starter #119
Hard to believe it's been over a year, since we "finished" this project. We broke-in the new engine for ~500 miles, but then at it's maiden trackday we really "BROKE IN" the engine. We lost a valve on the cool down lap. So now we're rebuilding the motor again, but this time with upgraded valves, forged pistons and just an overall more robust motor to support the BOE300 kit power level. We also have a new supercharger (still TVS1320 aka BOE300 model) since the valve debris damaged the old one pretty badly.

With covid-19 and having not been able to work on this thing since it's at a friend's house, I made a little video of the project which takes you through the rebuild process in 13 minutes:
 

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As I reflect on the many hours spent on this project and the associated frustration at times, the biggest thing I’m struck by is how much I actually enjoyed the process even more than the outcome.
The same I felt during the months I spent restoring the Elan, replete with new chassis. Although, I drove that car for 20 yrs and loved it.

Why did valve go south?

Very nice video too. Congrats!
 
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