The Lotus Cars Community banner

What is at fauit for the failure?

  • Differential issue?

    Votes: 7 100.0%
  • Other issue?

    Votes: 0 0.0%
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ive waited to post this information till the smoke has cleared and I gave motovicity distribution and quaife UK a shot to remedy the situation. Both have failed to take any recourse or offer and restitution.

Ill first say I am a certified master mechanic and have made a very good living in the auto industry. My account of the problem is not guestimation but years of experience.

Over the winter I had a new quaife diff installed in my 2005 Elise trans. Its a straight forward job but requires a special tool so I had another shop do it. During the time the trans was out I supercharged the car and installed 1 rear motor mount. I changed nothing about the suspension or geometry of the car. I received the trans back, Installed it with new circlips and all looked good for the first 10 miles. I took the car for a shake down run, pulled off the highway and "bang" the car stopped moving. Turns out the axle had snapped. Not from power, but due to it pulling out to the end snapping near the circlip. I towed the car, contacted the installation shop of the diff and quaife and both said "maybe it wasnt seated properly".(see picture)

I bought another axle, installed it with another new circlip and a fresh seal . This time time I double checked it with a prybar to assure the axle was seated properly. It would not come out. But it did move back and forth .240" from its full in seated position to its pulled out by hand extended position. This struck me as odd and excessive but I was assured by motovicity's ace that it was normal. (see pictures)

New axle was in for about a week before I went to take it for a drive and had 3 qts of trans fluid on the ground. I brought the car back in the shop, pulled the shields and saw that it was leaking past the drivers axle seal, the same one that snapped the shaft and just had a new seal. The axle was able to be pulled back so much by hand that it was allowing the fluid to leak out. It was pulling back .240". I again called motovicity and they said "everything looks normal from the pictures"

so I installed a third seal, Set it to factory service manual depth with dial calipers (Never had to do this in the last 15 years as a mechanic) and installed the axle. For the first couple weeks it seemed fine. One day I went to take my fiance somewhere and she says "watch the ground its really slippery" again, 3 qts of fluid on the ground. So I again, call motovicity and speak to josh their technical liason. He reccomends mounting the seal further out. Ridiculous but I will try anything to not have to remove the trans.


So I install the seal as far outboard as I can. I use rtv around the outter diameter for a little extra reassurance as I have now eliminated over 50% of its sealing surface. I checked it for binding to make sure the new position wasnt holding the axle too far out. Fill the trans, Install the oem lotus axle with new circlip that I bought after the first one snapped and start driving the car again. 50 miles later still no leaks. So I Take it on the highway, I pull off to the shoulder to check the map, go to take off and "bang" axle snaps off and its dumping 3 qts of fluid on the ground. Again it goes on the tow truck.

I am finally beyond pissed and decide the trans is coming out. I send it back to the diff installation shop, they tell me everything looks good with install and everything is speced correctly with the install. So I have them pull the diff and send it to quaife's USA distributor, Motovicity. They receive it and within a day completely sure that it is in NO WAY their problem or a defect on their end. I go back and fourth emailing with them but get no where and eventually bite the bullet and by a different differential.


I ended up with a TRD LSD and have since put 700 miles on it with NO problems. The measured pullout on this axle is .080 when it is fulled installed.
Thats a significent difference from the .240 with the quaife diff. I now consider my episode over.... except! I am out thousands of dollars in damages and time of which motovicity and quaife dont see as their problem.

A quick list of costs

$1100 Crappy quaife diff
$350 Installation into trans
$100 Initial new bearings and seals
$180 about 12 qts of MT-90 redline
$20 3 new circlips
$ 20 3 new seals
$1100 new trd diff
$100 new bears and seals for trd diff
$1400 replacement value of axles
14 hours of taking tranny out, putting it in, taking it out, putting it in ... PRiceless!!!!

My theory behind the failure is that there is to much off centered axial rotation that is causing the axle to vibrate and essentially throw itself out of the diff at high speeds (120MPH). I have video running the axle at speed up to about 50mph and the excessive play is obvious.


I know this is long winded and a boring read but its very upsetting to me to get screwed by a company as large as motovicity and quaife. The diff is going back to quaife UK for another inspection so I will update the post if I get any other results. This is a tight online community and I would love to save someone else the trouble.

To the guys that have helped me over the last 5 months of this adventure I appreciate your time. I am happy to say that the TRD diff is working great. I am out over $3000 but I dont have to worry about the axle snapping and sending me into the wall the next time im out.

I should of just googled "quaife axle popping out " and I probably would of gone a different direction. Lifetime warranty my butt.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
The last point I forgot to make. If there was an external force as Motovicity has claimed multiple times causing the axle to pull out. Why would it not of pulled the rubber boot section of the joint apart first? This section has over 2 inches of designed play and does not require a pry bar to take apart like the inner splined secion.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,637 Posts
Most likely an issue of greater play (indirectly) on the Quaife. The greater range of movement, the greater amount of time to build velocity (inertia) of longitudal motion. A shorter range of motion tends to produce less total force to separate the shaft. Many people who have intentionally pulled the shafts, have spoken to the amount of force required to pull it. A fortunate few have had the shaft pulled without "getting macho" with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Another 150 miles today including a few trips through some twisties. Axle is still tight!! hurray!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
215 Posts
Ziker, that sucks. Having worked with you on the supercharger install I know your attention to detail and mechanic competency. The vendor should have stood behind their product. Certainly a warning for the rest of us.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,195 Posts
I concur with Lotus111. You are very well known for your attention to details and meticulous work. You need to move back to the US!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,928 Posts
was there no internal groove for the snap ring to go into?

Having installed LSD differentials into both of my cars, one Quaife in the Esprit and a Honda Type-R in my Acura, I know that differential preload adjustment is a huge issue. Also the axles must be held in place for them to function correctly. The Esprit uses dual concentric roll pins through the CV and the stub axle, and the Acura uses the similar snap rings as the Toyota.

I believe the Toyota uses shims to set the differential preload, along with new bearings, and those shims need to be carefully measured and changed to the correct thickness for the tolerance stack of the new differential and bearings. I'm wondering if your shop may have not taken the time to order the correct shims?...

Otherwise, if the ring grooves inside the Quaife were not there or not to the right dimensions, then the snap rings can't hold the axles in place.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The quaife diff has no groove for the circlip to fall into. The splines are cut to a certain depth and the ends of the spline are what hold the snap ring from pulling back. On mine, that allowed the shaft to move .240 thousands as measured with a set of starrett dial calipers. I have installed a number of differentials and this one has no black magic. Its very straight forward. I appreciate your input as its reassuring to know that nothing ive done seems crazy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
658 Posts
My theory behind the failure is that there is to much off centered axial rotation that is causing the axle to vibrate and essentially throw itself out of the diff at high speeds (120MPH). I have video running the axle at speed up to about 50mph and the excessive play is obvious.
axial rotation? isn't that the same as ... rotation? not sure what you mean here.

The circlip limits outboard movement of the axle, yes? What limits inboard movement? If there's a lot of axial play then yeah that's probably gonna be a problem with a circlip retainer.

I know this is long winded and a boring read
ha, it's the opposite of boring.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
axial rotation? isn't that the same as ... rotation? not sure what you mean here.

The circlip limits outboard movement of the axle, yes? What limits inboard movement? If there's a lot of axial play then yeah that's probably gonna be a problem with a circlip retainer.

Axial rotation, I apologize, It sounded correct in my head. I meant off off center axis play or runout. It never spun true. In one of the videos I have the left side axle is visibly moving up and down. I should of put a dial indicator on it figure out its runout but I had not thought about that at the time. The axle is limited in how far it goes in by the shoulder cut on the axle. Quaife UK has now agreed to look at the diff so It will be going out tomorrow.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,928 Posts
The quaife diff has no groove for the circlip to fall into. The splines are cut to a certain depth and the ends of the spline are what hold the snap ring from pulling back. On mine, that allowed the shaft to move .240 thousands as measured with a set of starrett dial calipers. I have installed a number of differentials and this one has no black magic. Its very straight forward. I appreciate your input as its reassuring to know that nothing ive done seems crazy.
Well that does sound like the problem. the snap rings are what limits the outward travel.

The inside of the Honda Torsen definitely has the ring grooves for the snap rings.





The Quaife for my Lotus Esprit was missing the grooves for the o-rings that seal the end of the half shafts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,513 Posts
Just installed a transmission from Monkey Wrench, it had the Quaife LSD installed and the shafts locked into place just as they did in the stock open diff..
Maybe you got a faulty diff without the grooves cut for some reason??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The snap ring goes in past the splines and the splines are what keep the ring from pulling back out. The quaife had tons of slop the TRD different I put in is great. Almost no play. Different goes back to quaife when I return from vacay.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
583 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
So I shipped the diff back to quaife UK. It got to england but never delivered because of import taxes. Then it got sent back to me.... and it never arrived and is lost. What a miserable experience this has been. It will never be solved.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,633 Posts
Dam Dog I feel for you!! look at the bright side, now your screen name really applies :)
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top