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I requested to share this post lifted from FB because it's important, particularly to those of us who buy used older cars that have been modified by the DPO (damn previous owner). The original poster is Barry Spencer, proprietor of Spencer's Motorsports of Rohnert Park, CA. I've known and done business with Barry for more than 35 years. Barry is rebuilding my 67 Elan from the frame up for me, so I trust his ability and judgment. Barry is also known as "Dr. Lotus" particularly among Esprit owners here in Northern California. He has had a few scares over the years, particularly last month, but today he had a big one.....

From Barry Spencer:
"This is one of the most dangerous things i have ever seen on any car. I just removed this steering wheel by the center nut. It wasn't attached to the hub at all. The only thing that was preventing the steering wheel from spinning was the clamping force of the center nut. Which wasn't very tight. I nearly road tested this before replacing the column. I am seriously shaking sitting in my office."

"This new customer just told me he drove from the east coast to CA with the steering wheel like this. Unbelievable. "
"The hub adapter is there. But not the correct one for that style of wheel. "
"This car had 1/2" toe out in the front. I just don't understand why certain people work on cars. Now do you see why i have the new tee shirt in my office. :))))) "

From me, I'm not sure a pre-purchase inspection would have found this, but at minimum, questioning owner modifications and repairs is prudent....

I looked at an Elise in SoCal that had been advertised on CL about 6 months ago. One of the mods was a removable steering wheel adapter... I looked over all the other mods the previous owner had done and based on the workmanship, decided the car was not the one for me. Maybe I got lucky....

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Wow that is good to know about. I never would have thought of that as something to look for when checking out a used lotus.
 
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