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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Guys, I have been off for some time but back. My car broke about a year ago.....and it is still at the dealer, Motorcars of Georgia. A saga I will gladly fill anyone in on, but there is light at the end of the tunnel. The car has been sitting, outside and uncovered, for months and the clutch and flywheel have bonded together and cannot be separated unless removed. The dealership is doing this repair and will probably just refinish the flywheel and clutch. Since it is out, and everything is original on the car (only 22K) I was thinking of just putting a new clutch and flywheel in and having them check the tranny to replace the troublesome circlip that everyone talks about having to fix. My questions are:

What flywheel would you recommend? I would like to put a lighter one in, just curious what you all might recommend. Same with the clutch. I have had great success on many other cars with Centerforce and would use them in a minute, but wondering what the Lotus world has the best success with. I will not be tracking this car but I do drive on the hard side.

Thanks for any help you can give. I will fill everyone in on what happened to my car (big electrical issues that took out the ignition and cold start systems) when I get my car back, but it has been quite the experience. I miss my car and look forward to getting her back very soon. I appreciate any help and guidance anyone can give, the Exprit is new to me....it is No 62 Anniversary car. Cheers.
 

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Cal H
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Yep, He is talking about the circlip and an anniversary car. Appears to be one of the pearl white 88's
But sitting outside uncovered for a year? That will make the paint look very distressed. Why was that done at a service center. Not good.
 

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Wingless Wonder
1988 Esprit Turbo
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Best to call Jay @ JAE parts and see if any lightweight flywheels are available. I don't recall anyone fitting a LW flywheel to a Citroen transmission.

At 22K miles I doubt your clutch is worn out. The shop should separate the two (if the car runs, it can be done in situ). Then check the flywheel for bluing. If it's not bad, just have it Blanchard-ground and call it a day (after installing the uprated circlip, and perhaps, new differential carrier bearings, the OE ones were NOT very robust).

Can't wait to hear the rest of your saga...
 

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Best to call Jay @ JAE parts and see if any lightweight flywheels are available. I don't recall anyone fitting a LW flywheel to a Citroen transmission.

At 22K miles I doubt your clutch is worn out. The shop should separate the two (if the car runs, it can be done in situ). Then check the flywheel for bluing. If it's not bad, just have it Blanchard-ground and call it a day (after installing the uprated circlip, and perhaps, new differential carrier bearings, the OE ones were NOT very robust).

Can't wait to hear the rest of your saga...
I did this on a Saleen Mustang that sat outside unused for about a year, the clutch froze to the flywheel. Started it up in a parking lot in first gear, a couple of quick stabs to the throttle with the clutch in and it broke free. Any corrosion on the surface will wear off in short order.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for chiming in, guys. The car is an 88 Anniversary car....sorry if that wasn't totally clear.

Have tried all the normal ways to break the clutch and flywheel apart, no joy in Mudville. They are having to disassemble, which isn't totally bad since it is on their dime and it makes it easier/cheaper to change the tranny clip.

Much more will follow but car has not been outside for a year, it has been around 5 months. I was shocked to see it as this is Lotus of Atlanta and the yard is full of Lambo's, Astons, McLaren's and Lotus among other items. Worst part is the factory perfect engine has lots of pitting on the aluminum surfaces and the cadmium finished items are all pitted. The valve cover paint is also all blistered off. Just total neglect not expected from a high-end shop. I am actually more worried about the perfect interior. Hope nothing has faded, cracked or sagged as it was perfect and one of the best examples of a Lotus interior anywhere. We will see......maybe all my repairs will end up free and I will have a totally fresh car. I will update everyone with the whole saga in the future. Thanks again for all your input, can't wait to get the pretty and fun little lady back and start giving her vigorous workouts again. Cheers.
 

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Wingless Wonder
1988 Esprit Turbo
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The red engine paint was probably ready to fall off anyway, to fair to the shop...

TADTS
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Carbuff, normally I would agree. However, in this case, it is the fault of the shop. The paint was perfect. It was the exposure to the extreme weather conditions in Atlanta this year that caused it to expand/contract much more than normal, plus moisture on the engine. It is so beyond me that a shop the caliber of Motorcars of Georgia would store a car like my Esprit (car was perfect. 22k and in a museum for 3 years, very well maintained vehicle and quite possibly one of the very best examples of a factory original anniversary car) outside without at least putting a cover on the car. You can bet I will fine tooth comb over the car when I take delivery of it back in the next couple of weeks. I am actually more concerned with the interior. It was about as perfect as you would expect and I am hoping there has been no fading. There was absolutely not a mark or sag anywhere in the interior when they got the car, and the engine bay was also in perfect cosmetic order when I turned to car over to them. Will let you know how it all turns out, but this whole saga has been on the ridiculous side for a pro/quality shop. The engine paint peel is far more of an inconvenience in the grand scheme of things.....but they are going to fix it as it was not delivered to them that way. If the paint and interior are not as nice as when they took the car in for service there will be war!! I have detailed pix.
 

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Carbuff, normally I would agree. However, in this case, it is the fault of the shop. The paint was perfect. It was the exposure to the extreme weather conditions in Atlanta this year that caused it to expand/contract much more than normal, plus moisture on the engine. It is so beyond me that a shop the caliber of Motorcars of Georgia would store a car like my Esprit (car was perfect. 22k and in a museum for 3 years, very well maintained vehicle and quite possibly one of the very best examples of a factory original anniversary car) outside without at least putting a cover on the car. You can bet I will fine tooth comb over the car when I take delivery of it back in the next couple of weeks. I am actually more concerned with the interior. It was about as perfect as you would expect and I am hoping there has been no fading. There was absolutely not a mark or sag anywhere in the interior when they got the car, and the engine bay was also in perfect cosmetic order when I turned to car over to them. Will let you know how it all turns out, but this whole saga has been on the ridiculous side for a pro/quality shop. The engine paint peel is far more of an inconvenience in the grand scheme of things.....but they are going to fix it as it was not delivered to them that way. If the paint and interior are not as nice as when they took the car in for service there will be war!! I have detailed pix.
Unless you have independent verification or some paperwork from the dealer attesting to condition when you dropped it off, you have an uphill battle trying to say an old car was in "perfect" condition. The fact that you knew it was not being properly cared for during it's stay and did not notify the dealer in writing makes your position worse. For customer good will they may do something but I can't see them going to far above and beyond to restore your car.
David Teitelbaum
 

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Wingless Wonder
1988 Esprit Turbo
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That DOES look poor.

Nice leaf collection.... :huh:

I've never seen an Esprit oil filler cap like that. :(
 

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It's not just the paint. All of the plated bracketry is corroded too. And the covering is frayed on the hoses. This is what happens to a car left outdoors. Even if it was pristine, if you leave an old car outside it seems they quickly age as if trying to catch up to their true chronological age. Is it possible the car was flooded? That could explain the seized clutch.
David Teitelbaum
 

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So is that car sitting outside without the glass rear hatch and without the engine cover in place?

No wonder your flywheel is seized, you have a mess and likely a mess of corrosion. Your sparkplugs will be full of water and rust, as will a lot of other parts of the engine bay.

The glass and/or the engine cover keeps the water out of the engine bay.
Where are those parts?
That car should go under a cover or inside somewhere tomorrow. You will never be able to get it back in pristine condition.

I'm not clear on how you let them jack you around so long. You clearly have an irrational expectation of their capability. They certainly can't and won't reverse the aging and weathering.

Randy
 

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Wingless Wonder
1988 Esprit Turbo
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Randy, The '88 Commemorative Editions were not fitted with the rear glass as on the other early Stevens cars. The CE and the entry-level N/A Esprit marketed in the Rest of the World had that "open" hatch. :UK:


I agree though, I'd either take the car "back home" or give them an outdoor cover to put on it. :(

if you leave an old car outside it seems they quickly age as if trying to catch up to their true chronological age.
Ain't it the truth... :panic:
 

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Ok, I thought that the glass may not have been there, but I'm sure it had an engine cover!

The pictures above are taken with the hatch down. There is no engine cover.
 

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Holy hell. That engine looks as bad as mine (actually, mine looks worse). But then again, my car actually did sit outside, unprotected, for seven years according to what I was told [thus, burning off the paint, flaking off nearly every piece of red engine paint, and drying out and cracking the leather interior].

x2 to get a rollback and bring this car home or buy a very good outdoor car cover for it.
 

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Randy,

This is heartbreaking to hear...I really feel for you. I can relate too.
I have a similar car (Commemorative Edition, #87 of 88) and went through the same thing, although elsewhere. Previously, my car was absolutely worshipped and totally babied...pristine perfect and had never spent a night outside in the time I had owned it until I brought it in for repairs. I freaked when I found out that my car had been sitting outside covered with bird poop. Had to bring them a windshield shade and a car cover...after that, they made an effort to keep it inside for me.

If I were you, I wouldn't wait until after the repairs are completed and try to recover after the damage is done, especially since this is a large, reputable dealer. That light blue leather is especially susceptible to fading and sun damage too...and even worse, shrinkage!

Although someone not familiar with my car would not notice, I know my car intimately and found more new flaws and damage that appeared on my car on the outside and inside of my Esprit from being left outdoors while being repaired than in the thirteen years that I have owned the car! :( Sadly, it's a real pisser since when your car is broken, they literally have you by the balls.

Definitely have a talk with them and in the very least, bring them an inside sun shade for the windshield...a large one from a mini-van so that the leather around the pillars and windshield vent, as well as radio console, will not dry out and pull away. This will at least minimize the damage to the leather areas next to the windshield and glass areas.

Another concern is that after sitting outdoors for five months, your 26 year old gas tanks are surely in a far worse condition than when you first brought the car in. This is another issue that will be almost impossible to prove or get compensated for. :(

Honestly, after an especially hellish experience for countless reasons that I won't go into here, I am starting to understand why some owners prefer to do all their own work. In all fairness, this is true not only with Esprits, but other cars as well. When you do your own work, you truly control every aspect of what your car goes through, both good and bad. I have done a lot of my own work on my lesser (non-Esprit) cars for decades, but was always a little afraid of working on the Esprit and have always admired those posting on these Esprit forums. I have long wished that I had the knowledge and ability to work on my own Esprit. Thanks to a long-time good friend and fellow clubmembers, I have recently been inspired to learn more than ever and do more of my own work to avoid another such occurrence in the future.

Hoping you get this resolved and that she is back on the road real soon...wishing you the very best!!!

BTW, BikerCMBC...thanks for taking that picture...I really enjoyed seeing that. Beautiful car...she looks just like my car! :)

Roy
Commemorative Esprit Turbo
(some say Anniversary, but per window sticker, actually a Commemorative Edition)
 

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Randy,

Was just thinking about you and realized that it's coming up on a month since you last posted this thread...did you get her back yet? Any updates from the mechanic?

Hoping you've had some good news since then.

BTW, I was shocked when I saw the 'before' pictures that you posted of your engine on an earlier thread, it looked showroom! Amazed at what a little time outdoors can do so quickly. Hoping you were able to work out some compensation or deal to your satisfaction.

I saw your engine on this link:
http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f16...prit-pics-here-40887/index31.html#post2501609

Roy
 
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