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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all,
It's been quite some time since I've been active on the forum so I thought I would contribute a little with my current project I've begun on my S1. Last build thread I did was a few years back which covered basically the rebuild and improvement of my VHPD engine. The engine will be getting a refresh in the form of a new set of liners and rings as well as a going through of the valve seats this time around but the main focus of this build will be the addition of a full roll cage to make the car compliant for club racing. Also I am refurbishing the suspension and adding a set of motorsport rear uprights to the mix.
At first I didn't have any intentions of documenting this work for the purposes of creating this thread but then I said "what the hell". I'm very excited to be doing this build and so why not share the experience..
A little background on why I'm tearing the car down...I don't get to track the car very often but the last two outings I suffered transmission problems with shifting into 3-4-5, up or down once the car was hot and I was pushing the car hard. The box would shift fine in the lower gears and also decent in the upper gears until it got hot.
The first time this happened I pulled the transmission to inspect the cables/gears/syncros and such...what I found was the dogs on the gears were a bit rounded and there where some signs of them having been reground at some point (second hand box with Quaife UCR straight gears).
The syncros where all within spec and the cables where all fine so I thought the dogs were just too rounded. I contemplated purchasing a new set of gears from Quaife (UCR dog engagement), but $5000 is steep, could buy an entire Honda drive train for that money!
I thought about it some more and figured I would look back into the box and check the clutch as the symptoms are more like the clutch is not disengaging completely. Or there is some issue with the translator cables or the internal bits in the box. While I'm at it I figured I'd go over the suspension and thoughts of club racing started me down the safety cage road.

So far I have removed the rear clam and roof from the car,

Removed the engine/gearbox...







This is the secret mojo of the S1 over the S2, this is the weight of the entire engine/transmission package fully dressed and still dripping fluids...



Upon removal of the gearbox from the engine I pulled the clutch pressure plate to find this.....


I guess we found the source of my shifting problems!!

I have removed all the A-arms from the car and sent them off to be powder coated satin black, I will post pic's when I get them back.
Turning towards the cage my initial thoughts were to extend the existing cage with the addition of forward bars and a halo bar. After reading over the rule book for the sanctioning body that I plan to race with it turns out for a number of reasons I can't use any of the existing equipment and I have to basically start from scratch!
At this point I pulled out the sawzall and went at the engine bulkhead.
Once the new cage is constructed I will fab up a new bulkhead from aluminium, omitting useless Exige rear window.



Currently the cylinder head is off to the machine shop and I have materials on the way to construct the cage, I will update this thread with descriptors and pics as I progress.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Made some progress today, got the base plates fabricated and mounted. Just need the tube to come in so I can start bending up a cage.
I ended up having to cut the upper door jams off temporarily to allow the cage to be remove once tacked up to fully weld and paint. I feel like I'm digging myself deeper into a hole sometimes...:lol
I have installed a cage in an S2 which was pre-fab'd by Hypersport but I have never bent one myself so this should be interesting.....





Picked up a tubing bender to get the cage done this week, it needed to be mounted to a stand that usually costs $100 so I built my own for $30 worth of 2" square stock steel...


I started on the main hoop, I'm using 1.5" DOM .095 wall tubing as per the rule books for the weight of the car. My intentions are to fabricate and "tack" the cage together in the car, then unbolt and remove the cage where I will finish the welding/painting then reinstall.
The main hoop was a bit of a challenge since it has to fit perfectly in place of the original to hold up the roof and provide a location for the door strikers. The original was 2.5" with a very gentle radius bend of I'm guessing 7-9", I'm using a 5" die so I really couldn't't use the old hoop as a template.
As you can see I made out alright, before tack welding the bar in place I used the roof as a guide to hold the hoop in perfect position.








You will notice a gap between the top of the front hoop and the windscreen, that is to allow the interior trim that hols the roof on the car...


 

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Discussion Starter #3
Just a little progress today, getting what I can done between sleep and 12 hour shifts at work..


 

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Discussion Starter #6
Harness bar installed

Got the harness bar fabricated today and half of the diagonal brace...




 

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HTML:
S1 or S2??
S1, its the car that one of your light-weight motor mounts came from- (lol) Mark's old car.
 

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Talk to me in a month when I'm done with my car.....
I was hoping you would say that..:D

Will be saving up, and now that you have mastered building a cage.....rotfl

Looking forward to updates. Always thought your car was one of the best looking examples out there. Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Took a small vacation but now I'm back to work, I knocked out the center roof bar this evening after getting off the plane..
I tried to follow the contour of the roof panel...


Room was left for the roof panel fixing panel...





 

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Discussion Starter #13
Made some major progress today,.. got the door bars done as well as the lower section of the diagonal.






I had the ends that attach to the main hoop curve out to give more room for the door to minimize the cutting that will be needed.

The only thing left is to weld on the door strike pin mounts and the tabs for the window net. Then the entire cage comes out to get fully welded.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Today I finished up the final components of the cage and removed it from the car.:bc




Cage out...




So the cage is roughly 79 lbs, I have not weighed the A-frame, petty bar and factory hoop yet to deduct...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Before finish welding on the cage I want to get the car back on it's wheels and out of the garage to make more room, that means getting the suspension back on. The A-arms have been media blasted and powder coated satin black. I am installing all new ball joints and Mono-ball spherical inserts.


The mono-balls install simply with a bench vise and a large socket..


Once all the a-arms were back together I started hanging them. I am changing out my stock rear uprights with Motorsport uprights from Eliseparts and converting from the single pot Brembo to a twin pot AP caliper with hand brake deleted (that should recoupe a couple of kgs that the cage added). Also I'm finally converting to a proper toe link kit..:lol


 

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Discussion Starter #16
Today I finished welding up the cage. I installed the mounting tabs for the window net..



Note to self....wear long sleeves when welding.... I've got nicely sun burned arms from the weld flash! :wall

Finished up all the welding and preped for paint...


First applied two coats of metal etch primer..



Followed by two coats of satin black...



Poor little buggy.....



I'll be bolting the cage in back in once the paint has cured enough to handle, then on to the motor..
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Cage is bolted back in car, I opened up the mounting holes just a bit in case of an slight warp-age during the weld up process. It fit in just fine with no issues.

I did a little trimming on the arm rests to make room for the mounting plates. They had to be fitted before the cage was reinstalled since the cage basically pinches them down to the sills.

I then started reinstalling the upper sections of the door jambs that I had to cut off for removal of the cage. I also installed a strip of 3M paint protection film on the top of the door bars so the paint doesn't get rubbed off getting in and out of the car..

I also had a chance to weigh the components that I removed from the car (factory hoop and bulk head)


So as you can see I removed approx. 53 lbs. and put back 79 lbs. so far..we'll have to see what the alloy bulk head ends up weighing.
 
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