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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have located a suitable fab shop near Mike G, and he has graciously agreed to consider letting me use his brace as a template to make some copies.

The shop has to build a jig - the tolerances are pretty tight. So there are some up front costs.

Is any body else interested in one of these braces in the $1K range? Might be able to save a few bucks if they can make 3 or 4 at once.

Installing the bung mounts on the frame is a HUGE undertaking so that must be considered.

Also, since we dont know exactly what these will look like....there will be a substantial non-refundable deposit. I know I will love it but I am 10 footer kinda guy - plus I am all about the increased chassis stiffness! They will probably not fool the concourse judge into thinking your Esprit is a real S300. :) But I bet I can shave a tenth off my lap at the next DE!!! 🤦‍♂️

Just consider the clout you will have at the next cars and coffee - there will be at least 1 guy that even knows what an S300 is!!!! He will lose his mind, I guarantee it :cool:
 

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'05 Lotus Elise Outlaw
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How much does our chassis flex that way? Admittedly, I was surprised how much of a difference the old Sector111/Inokinetic substiffy made.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update the Fab shop can do 3 for $900 each. Plus shipping.

I am leaning towards having something done local to me custom that is a little different, unless we get 3 buyers. Seems very unlikely.
 

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Question - does that price include the 4 mounting bungs?
 

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Also - not to throw a wet blanket on this, but just so there are no surprises, the cradle mounts in the engine bay over the top of the engine. It can be removed to service the engine, but I am pretty sure the installed brace will NOT fit under a lot of the engine covers out there. Also, the legs of the cradle are bolted to 4 conical bungs that are welded to the frame tubes. Some fiberglass will need to be cut out to allow space for the bungs and cradle, and - the real kicker - the frame needs to be removed from the car to weld the bungs to the frame tubes. This is a precise fit - there is no adjustability in the cradle, so the bungs have to be in the right place. The fit is so precise, the tube by the timing belt is crushed to make space for the cam pulley and belt.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I did not specifically ask about the bungs because I could not find my picture, There is a little wiggle room on the pricing so I figured it would all work out in the end.

Mike I was thinking I would take all the body to chassis bolts out (6 or 8) take loose the fuel hoses on the bottom of the car and jack the rear of the body up 6 or 8 inches, clean up the frame, and carefully weld the bungs. Do you think that is rainbows and unicorns? I was just hoping....

I could be wrong but I believe the Stevens rear hatch clears the brace, its all in front of and below the CC and on the sides there is no issue. The cooling system bottles may need to be re-located as well.

There may be some FG trimming up near the front lower engine compartment (near bung mount) but I thought the rear brace was not fouling any FG.
Vehicle Car Hood Motor vehicle Automotive design
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The two biggest concerns I have left:

1.) How does the Power Steering line route around this thing - the line and the front arm of the brace appear to share the same real estate
2.) When you show the fab shop the brace - and they see that spot that is "crushed" to clear the cam belt - how the heck will they even do that. If they improvise I worry it wont fit. They may take a look at the actual item and bail on the whole project.

Can you take the first copy they make home and drop it on and see if it will fit?
 

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The two biggest concerns I have left:

1.) How does the Power Steering line route around this thing - the line and the front arm of the brace appear to share the same real estate
2.) When you show the fab shop the brace - and they see that spot that is "crushed" to clear the cam belt - how the heck will they even do that. If they improvise I worry it wont fit. They may take a look at the actual item and bail on the whole project.

Can you take the first copy they make home and drop it on and see if it will fit?
1) I don't know about power steering - my car doesn't have it.

2) Couple of ideas come to mind - you can crush the pipe before bending, bend the pipe against a fixture and crush/bend at the same time, or bend the pipe and get a BFH and hammer in a crimp. And I would definitely want to test fit what they come up with.
 

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Here are some photos...
Light Bumper Automotive tire Wood Vehicle
Automotive tire Bicycle part Bicycle fork Rim Wood
Wood Automotive tire Gas Automotive exterior Bumper
Automotive tire Wood Bumper Gas Automotive exterior
Motor vehicle Wood Automotive exterior Gas Auto part
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior Automotive design
Wheel Automotive tire Tire Alloy wheel Motor vehicle
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Wow - thanks for those pics - absolutely exactly what we need.

Couple of thoughts.

1.) I dont have any qualms about removing the FG for the install, well worth the added stiffness. And could be nicely finished with out too much trouble. Others will probably disagree
2.) I wonder if the left front leg were extended 4 or 5 inches and the the bar over to the aluminum cross mount modified to match if it would clear the cam wheel with out the caved in area?
3.) If the above will not work, could that bend be accomplished by using a "C notch" with some heavier wall larger Diam. tube? Something like the photo below. Seems like it would be easier than copying the cave in?
Automotive exterior Rectangle Font Auto part Parallel
 

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You don't have 4-5 inches to move it. You would be removing a chunk of bulkhead to make space.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I meant making it longer, extending toward the top of car? If it was possible Lotus probably would of done it.
 

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I did discuss the Sport 300 engine brace benefits with Roger Becker during the Indianapolis LOG 28. Roger stated that the engine brace was stiffening Esprit rear frame by aboout 30%. Roger also told me that originally all S4S Esprit models supposed to come with the Sport 300 engine brace installed, but the brace added a lot of difficulties and extended the assembly time too much, so the decision was reached not to incude upper engine brace in S4S model. Actually the first few S4S Esprits came with the conical bungs still welded in, but the brace was never installed...
 

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Thanks for the really great pictures Mike!
And thanks to EspriS4S for that story. I also read somewhere, that the workers at Lotus found them very difficult to service because of the tight fit, despite being able to unbolt them.
I'll do mine anyway.
To add to the work, the late style SE engine lid, aka the S4/Sport300/S4s etc, need modification as well to clear the legs. I am currently discussing this being made in carbon fiber with proper heatprotection maybe better carbon fiber mix, and the shape that fits the engine brace completely.
So, can we try to find that old list of stiffness, where the Esprit SE, the Sport300 and the X180R have stiffness values? And where it's clear to see, that the X180R is in a whole other league regarding this, therefore leading to more choices regarding arbs, springs and dampers. I saw it long time ago, just don't remember where.
Really great to see info gathered on here to help drivers making this happen.
Kind regards,
Redfox
 

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'95 S4s & '79 JPS #040
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Hi,

As I have the earliest S4s made I am curious about the comment "Actually the first few S4s Esprits came with the conical bungs still welded in, but the brace was never installed...". I just fractured my hip so I can't check it for a while. 😕

I will definitely check that later when I can verify it. How easy is it to check when hobbled (cane
bound) ? I have rear wheels off. Can I see thru wheelwell without getting on the ground?

Rich F
'95 S4s ...SHF63000
'79 JPS #040
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Ahh that sucks about the hip. I dont think you can see the locations very easy with rear panels in place. Maybe on the drivers side through the wheel well? I will take a peak later.
 

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You should be able to see them in the engine compartment with the engine cover off - look at the forward corners where the tubes meet the rest of the frame - they will be poking up.
 
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