Electrical issues Series 4

Idle chat about any thing Sevens & Clubman cars.

Moderators: Simjen, KiwiBirkin

User avatar
Boris67
Paid Member
Posts: 137
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:41 pm

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Boris67 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:16 am

"Im pleased Im not relying on this Lemon coloured thing for my daily transport! Thanks in advance for any advice that's not gonna cost me a bomb!"

As a mate of mine in the UK had the cheek to tell me "Don't you know what Lotus stands for - Lots Of Trouble Usually Serious" and the b@st@rd drives a TVR! Karma got him when one of his head gaskets gave up! :shock: :roll:

In all seriousness though once you get through the gremlins and possibly even bring bits of them into the 21st century these things are quite reliable. They do remain, of course, completely impractical! But we get that bit :D

User avatar
Gollum
Posts: 1213
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:15 am

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Gollum » Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:14 am

I used a S4 as a daily-driver to commute into the Auckland CBD for years, no matter what the weather. I wore a suit and never got (very) wet. The main problem with older Lotuses in general is deferred maintenance from previous owners. The Escort or Cortina never had reputations as unreliable cars, yet once the same running gear was a Lotus it started breaking? It's because they were driven like racers by people who couldn't afford, or be bothered to, maintain them.

Just make sure you do everything properly so you don't have to do the same thing twice. It'll be a 'rolling refresh' but you'll have a reliable car at the end.

Phill
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:59 am

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Phill » Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:13 pm

Yep understood, It hasn't received a lot of love in the last few years, so its overdue for some. Included in plans; Alternator lucas ACR, Starter Roadrunner, Dellorto Carbs rebuilt, New fuel pump, new battery, Electronic ignition and new coil, Radiator top tank removed and cleaned, New bushes and springs in front, front calipers rekitted, new discs. Some of this ive done already and Ive set a target to have this all done before 2019. The rain wont be too much of an issue as I'm in Dunedin!

Phill
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:59 am

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Phill » Wed Nov 21, 2018 11:33 am

Just a quick update on progress, Got new starter, alternator, fuel pump mounted, Refurbished carbs going back on in the next few days, then some wiring to be done, Im a little bit nervous about my Water pump possibly leaking, Done some research on the Burton Conversion, Sounds like to do it properly it is Engine out, Head and sump off, New Back plate, front cover and water pump, Just wondering what the best way would be to remove the Engine, Disconnect from bellhousing, or take gearbox etc all at once, Anyone able to give advice on the best approach/method to take? Was planning on getting vehicle running first up to check water pump and to show uo any other leaks/issues before removing motor in Winter probably.

User avatar
Boris67
Paid Member
Posts: 137
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:41 pm

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Boris67 » Mon Nov 26, 2018 12:11 am

Hi – I’ve done this both ways (split engine / gearbox and together) but the best way to remove them is with the engine and gearbox in one piece, you really need an engine crane with a tilting bar. This is how I’ve done it:

- remove bonnet, nuts are inside nose so you need to remove number plate, grill and get inside with large socket or spanner
- drain coolant, disconnect radiator hoses, remove radiator
- carbies can stay on but disconnect throttle cables, choke and fuel lines
- remove headers
- disconnect distributor wiring, oil pressure switch wiring
- disconnect alternator / generator wiring, slacken off fan belt and remove, remove alternator / generator
- remove clutch master cylinder from bell housing, zip tie out of way (no need to undo any hoses)
- remove any other wiring connected to engine / gearbox (reverse light switch wires if they’re about)
- get the rear of the car up and on jack stands, drain gearbox oil
- undo drive shaft at diff, remove driveshaft, wrap up rear of gearbox (crap will get in, oil will get out if not)
- disconnect speedo cable from RHS of gearbox
- undo the two nut / bolts holding the gearbox mount and remove bolts
- reach up under the gear lever and undo the nut / bolt holding the remote changer rod to the gear lever, remove bolt
- remove the gear lever knob (mine is wooden and unscrews), remove the rubber gator, unscrew the cover (bell like cover) and remove the gear lever
- take the rear of the car off the jack stands, jack up the front and put it on stands
- place the engine crane at the front of the car
- support the engine (take the load off of the engine mounts) with the crane (obviously firstly attaching the crane to the engine! - note that I looped straps around the engine, I would not use the thermostat casting or inlet manifold castings to take the load)
- undo the engine mount bolts connected to the chassis, undo and remove the bolts to the engine, remove the engine mounts
- the engine should now be swinging in the breeze from the front but sitting on the cross member beneath the gearbox mount at the back, now for the tricky part… 😊
- you’ll see there is very little clearance between the front pulley and the chassis cross member, you need to gently pull the engine forward and tilt it upward to clear the cross member, noting that you also have very little clearance between the bell housing and the firewall… be gentle!
- gently pull the engine crane back, lift the engine a little, angle a little – it will come out eventually. Be careful as the gearbox slides out and comes off the mount at the rear, the weight distribution will change and you’ll need to re-tilt it to get it to the right angle

This is an excellent series of pictures which helped me immensely the first time I took the motor / gearbox out of mine:

http://stickboy.supras.org.nz/car/S4-7/

If you search on my build diary I think there are some good pictures there too.

Installation is the reverse of the above… Good luck!

Best regards Warwick

User avatar
Boris67
Paid Member
Posts: 137
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 7:41 pm

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Boris67 » Mon Nov 26, 2018 12:16 am

And re the water pump - my water pump was shot and needed rebuilding too, I was too poor to buy the Burton modular water pump conversion kit, but their standard rebuild kit has a ceramic washer which is meant to stop the issue of the seal tearing itself to bits if the car is left standing for a while. The obvious (and cheap) solution is to just use the ceramic washer rebuild kit (which I did and it's been fine) and drive the thing as much as possible (which I kind of do), simples!

All the very best when you do start it up!!!

User avatar
Gollum
Posts: 1213
Joined: Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:15 am

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Gollum » Mon Nov 26, 2018 9:17 pm

I reckon the Burton kit is ugly, expensive and unnecessary.
The Lotus' waterpump issues stem from two things - being left to sit too long and the seal getting torn as a result, and people running their alternator belt too tight. Interestingly the Europas, with cam-driven alternators, didn't have anywhere near the waterpump failure rate (according to Miles Wilkins book). Just buy a new kit like the one Warwick bought and you'll be fine.

Phill
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:59 am

Re: Electrical issues Series 4

Post by Phill » Wed Nov 28, 2018 6:45 am

Thanks for all the info, Im now getting close to WOF and Rego time, (8 years since last WOF) Still sorting out some minor electrical issues, but Carbys,new alternator,starter and electronic ignition all go, Car has been started and sounds awesome.
Think this will be an ongoing project, with a few more jobs being done in winter season such as the fuel sender, and maybe water pump if it actually is an issue, I will post another couple of Pics soon, when its back on its feet.

Post Reply