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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: May 12, 2018, 10:20 am 
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Joined: July 18, 2012, 8:14 pm
Posts: 17
Miatav8,MstrASE,A&P,F wrote:
I guess you've seen these videos about the rear main "issue";

I think the cause is crankcase pressure build up due to poor ventilation and blowby. I don't know any engine design that requires a retainer to keep the rear main from being blown out. With a clear pcv valve and open breather (not epa approved) there should be no way an engine with decent ring seal could build up enough pressure to blow it out.
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I actually learned about the rear main issue from Pakisitani and Mexican forums.

I agree on the pressure build up coming from the PCV valve. The ventilator in the intake manifold is freeflow and the pcv valve comes out of the vale cover. However it is also accepted that the oil level should be kept below the F line on the dipstick.
That retaining system looks silly and I doubt it would actually work. At most I see it stopping the seal from coming out as far as mine did but I doubt it would stop it from leaking at least a little bit.

I did forget to mention that I replaced the PCV. It is the same off of a 2000 Hyundai Accent or a 2003 Kia Spectra. My friend has the Spectra and we compared them. The PCV on my engine was indeed sludged up. I thought about cleaning it out because my instinct is to fix rather than replace. But it is a $5 part and is in the replaceable category.


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PostPosted: February 27, 2019, 12:44 am 
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Joined: July 18, 2012, 8:14 pm
Posts: 17
UPDATE TIME!!!

It's been almost a year now since I got my Go-4. I didn't do much to it for months at a time. Work, general frustration, and difficulty finding parts delayed progress.

The reason my Go-4 wouldn't start is because I improperly grounded the motor. The ground was supposed to be hooked up to one of the transmission bolts and I hooked it up to the starter. After solving this issue, the motor would make a horrid grinding sound after starting.

https://youtu.be/5-Aj_TVVAgY

I was able to deduce that possibly I bent the flexplate when attempting to reinstall the motor by myself. I needed a replacement and began sending measurements to various gear and machine shops around my area for quotes. Someone on the Facebook group posted a parts vehicle for sale. A friend and I took a bus to North Carolina and rented a budget truck to bring the Go-4 back.

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I was able to get my replacement flex plate from there and replaced it in my engine. The motor started right up but there was a different sound, a sort of whining scrape. The original torque converter bolts went missing and I had to get replacements. I believe the new bolt heads are a hair too tall and are making contact somewhere so I will have to grind them down a bit.

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At some point I had to take it off the street under threat of tow because it was in the same spot for too long so here it is on a trailer. I took it to a friend's vacant lot and continued working on it there.

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I am now working on putting together a rebuild kit for my front forks. I've found replacements for all the parts except for 1 wear ring that may need to be custom ordered. I've been quoted $20 per ring making them take up almost 2/3rds of the cost of all the parts. I might just put an air spring under there like I've seen a couple other people do.

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On another note. I was looking for parts that I may need as well as any possible performance upgrades and came across this little gadget. Obviously I see this think and think "That's not how that works." but how do these companies get away with selling this crap? Do they just assume since it sells to the ignorant who aren't savvy enough to know better they'll never realize these are a scam? Somewhere in the listing they guarantee numbers and even sell these for various makes and models. If it didn't cost so much I'd buy one just to see what's inside. I'm sure it's just a couple of LEDs, some resistors, maybe a couple random integrated circuits.

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PostPosted: February 27, 2019, 7:32 pm 
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Thanks for the update. Working in the street has to be tough.

I’m surprised you’d need a fork rebuild. Usually these things are retired with relatively low miles.
If you are looking for better damping, consider buying or making cartridge emulators:
http://www.racetech.com/html_files/emulatorgv.html
http://www.racetech.com/html_files/EMUL ... TTING.html

You could also use slightly thicker oil for similar effect but emulators allow overload where thicker oil, while improving damping also makes all bumps more harsh. I’d use synthetic where it gets much below freezing.

You have another option of doing away with the damper rod forks all together for the newer system with a leading control arm and two coilovers.

Yet another option is to fit a standard non-gas charged shock to help dampen without jacking it up. Air shocks and bags don’t dampen and would just make it bouncy.

If it is still rubbing, spray black primer on the flywheel and bolt heads, runs it, then inspect for shiny spots.
Here is a pic of the suspension on my 96. I named it “Rusty”.


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PostPosted: February 27, 2019, 11:06 pm 
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Working on the street is one of those things that is so normal to me at this point it isn't so bad. I've never had a driveway and almost no one I know does. I've been doing my own mechanic work for 8 years at this point. You adapt and learn to deal.

I'm going to try that spray paint trick next. That video is actually of the sound it makes now. The one before was a deeper scraping sound. The sound it makes now goes away when the car is in drive.

Mine has around 23k or 32k I can't remember. But they are driven fairly hard in stop and go traffic and my forks had a severe leak and were almost devoid of oil. All the oil inside the shock is in this one picture.

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I think after a service the techs didn't reinstall the axle properly and ended up binding the forks and this probably contributed to the premature wear. That or poor engineering.

I'm not too comfortable building the control arm type suspension with the 2 coilovers as I have little experience working with that type of system. Would it be as simple as bent tubes for the fork, some bushings on the bottom, attached to a U shape with an axle/hub and a couple of coilovers?

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For the emulators, do I gut the current shocks and put the emulators inside? How do those work?
EDIT: Nevermind one of those links explains it.

I like Rusty, got a lot of character that one

And thanks for all the help. I love collecting all this information.


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PostPosted: February 28, 2019, 7:04 am 
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I’d put it back together with your rebuild kit and thicker oil for now so it can be used asap, then start looking for a complete newer steering system to ensure you have everything you might need to install it. You will need everything on page 21 at a minimum.

https://westwardindustries.com/wp-conte ... al-R08.pdf

This recall instruction on the 20v caliper on the newer design fork has a lot of great info too:
https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/rcl/2014/R ... -5783P.pdf

However, once you put it back together without mods, you may be satisfied. I didn’t do anything to mine but it was in good shape to begin with. It is like you said; just bent forks with a U control arm but there are lots of important details to consider when designing from scratch.

The retrofit coilover in the pic is bent at the bottom brkt. The control arm needs a small amount of material removed (red area) to clear the U brkt when the coilover is fully extended (droop). Otherwise it looks like a great fit but hopefully it is close to the same length as the original coilover so the axle doesn’t drop too far and damage the brake line or cause the suspension to bind. Leading arms with excess droop are not as forgiving as trailing arms.

If you are still not sure if the converter bolts are rubbing the block plate, take all three out and run the engine briefly to confirm the noise is gone. Also look at the starter for rubbing on the wheel or the starter gear not retracting, hanging on the flywheel. This can be caused by the starter being too close to the wheel. There usually is a steel plate between the engine and transmission that also shims the starter out to the correct distance and shims the bellhousing the right distance from the torque converter and starter ring gear inside the bell . I can see part of a plate in your flywheel pic. I’ve seen people leave the plate out and have similar problems.


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PostPosted: February 28, 2019, 10:07 am 
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Thanks for this advice. Very informative. I've planned on rebuilding them since I first noticed there's almost no movement in the suspension. If I was working on a motorcycle and saw the forks in that condition, they'd definitely be up for a rebuild and I rarely see bikes with more than 12k miles. I've seen leaky forks with less than 6k on the odo. I think it's the driving conditions in NYC.

I'm going to rebuild these as soon as I get the parts from the supplier I found and hopefully that lasts me for a while. I'm going to get 2 sets in case I need to rebuild them again within the next few years.

That new front suspension would be cool, but the cost would be way too high. I'm tryna get this thing going frugally without being cheap. Unless I get my hands on one from the auction for real low that's only good for parts, I don't see that upgrade happening.

I will however take a few pages out of RQRiley's trimuter and take a closer look at my FZ50's front suspension and try to get a better understanding of the way this system works, I can always bend a couple tubes and have a few plates cut with a laser or water jet.

That shock is very wrong for that application. It doesn't sit in the brackets correctly due to width and is supposed to have a hole on both ends. But I will do more research and try to better understand what you're trying to teach me. I appreciate your input.

The plate is definitely in place but I can always cut a spacer out of 1/16" steel sheet if the bolts are rubbing. I'm going to try removing the 3 TC bolts and see. The rubbing sound isn't present when turning the motor by hand the way it was when the flexplate was bent. It also goes away when I put it in drive.


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PostPosted: February 28, 2019, 11:57 am 
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I see what you mean with the coilover bottom mount being offset by the clevis end instead of an eye like the original coilover. It looks like the clevis is removable for swapping to a male rod end. Another option is to add a plate for the clevis to bolt to, with two bolts holding it onto the arm and spacers. The plate would need to be bushed also. Easier to just replace the clevis but still doable cheap. Here is a pic of how to do it and keep the clevis end.

Do a google image search of "leading arm fork" or "earles fork" to find many different examples on motorcycles and bicycles.


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