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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: August 26, 2017, 3:55 pm 
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Joined: July 18, 2009, 9:40 pm
Posts: 131
Location: Frankfort, KY
Work trips finally calmed down enough for me to go do a leakdown test and compression test. Was expecting a head gasket issue and poor numbers on the leakdown, but got bizarrely good numbers. Very possible that cylinder 2 wasn't perfectly at tdc.

All tests done while the engine is cold
Leakdown Test
cylinder 1 90/85 - 5.5%
cylinder 2 90/77 - 14.4%
cylinder 3 90/87 - 3.3%
cylinder 4 90/85 - 5.5%
cylinder 5 90/86 - 4.4%
cylinder 6 90/85 - 5.5%
cylinder 7 90/83 - 7.7%
cylinder 8 90/85 - 5.5%

Compression Test
cylinder 1 160psi
cylinder 2 150psi
cylinder 3 155psi
cylinder 4 150psi
cylinder 5 150psi
cylinder 6 145psi
cylinder 7 150psi
cylinder 8 150psi


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PostPosted: October 9, 2017, 9:37 pm 
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Location: Frankfort, KY
I had a spare radiator so I tried this to see if a bit more radiator might solve the problem. Long story short, I went about 14 minutes at idle (starting at 180) before it started to edge up past 190. Not sure how high it would have climbed, but this is also without a radiator cap and instead using the spillfree funnel. The pic is showing where I'm testing a second radiator in series. The fan on the second radiator was NOT hooked up at this point. Going to try a few more times while flushing the radiator, and then try with a cap to see what I can do. The goal is constant idling for an hour if I want. If this works, I'll probably try a drag radiator that I can tuck into the rear of the car (if there is room) and I'll try to mount a couple fans on it.
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PostPosted: October 10, 2017, 11:42 am 
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Joined: March 30, 2011, 7:18 am
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Location: central Arkansas
Back in the '70s with third-generation emissions controls, many OEMs increased their operating temperatures from 180-190 to 205-215; higher for some cars. It was common for many of them to "chug" into the coolant overflow bottles when shut off.

The higher temperatures freaked out many owners, which is why Detroit went back to uncalibrated gauges or "hot" lights. (read up on the early Kawasaki Ninjas and how the factory recalled the bikes to add a resistor to make the gauge read lower)

If you can keep the temperature under 215 on a hot day it won't hurt the engine a bit. In fact, the engine is more efficient at that temperature and cylinder wall wear goes down. Downside is you might not have much reserve capacity for, say, pitting after a track session, but chugging into the bottle then isn't going to hurt it.


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PostPosted: October 10, 2017, 10:26 pm 
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Joined: July 18, 2009, 9:40 pm
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Location: Frankfort, KY
Thanks for the reassurance. I am going to try doing the rear radiator (a smaller one that tucks under the car) and trust that I can accept the possible highish temps. If I can live with that I'm fine. I actually think that a secondary with fans might actually solve the issue entirely.


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PostPosted: May 25, 2018, 6:07 pm 
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Location: Frankfort, KY
Turned out that it appears my radiator was just too small, and that resulted in a fan that was a bit too small as well, and too little coolant. Had a radiator custom made (required moving the nose 5 inches forward), it came with a spal fan. Added a temp sensor to it, and a backup switch. First test drive was perfect. Car will idle up to temp, fan kicks on and brings it slightly back down. First drive back home was not as good. In the 8 years or so of building this thing, I've used the same battery. Had mistakes of letting it drain and whatnot. It needed charging before I drove it, and I assumed it'd charge up completely on the way to town. Long story short, it didn't. Had to have a jump to get it home. Just relocated the battery to the front again (no space in the rear) and put a real battery in instead of one of those tiny braille batteries. MPC makes a great group 51r battery tray that is much cheaper than the ugly mazda ones.

TLDR; Car now cools itself, and I've changed the battery setup. Going to test this weekend again until I have a satisfactory and fun drive.


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PostPosted: May 26, 2018, 2:12 pm 
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Joined: July 18, 2009, 9:40 pm
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Location: Frankfort, KY
Took it out to lunch today. Everything was perfectly functional, though i'm a bit concerned about the cycle fenders. They are the last thing that probably needs looking at. They look great, but wobble a bit more than I'd like. I could probably make the stays a little sturdier, but I'm considering finding lighter fenders instead.


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PostPosted: May 26, 2018, 5:03 pm 
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Location: central Arkansas
Your fenders are pretty wide; lots of leverage across the brackets.

I'd leave the fenders alone and beef up the bracketry.


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PostPosted: May 30, 2018, 2:23 pm 
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Location: Frankfort, KY
The hope was that I could find lightweight fenders AND beef up the brackets. The fenders are aluminum, so at least better than steel or something, but I do notice the stays being the things that seem to be flexing. Right now that are solid rods (not tubes), but pretty thin I think by comparison to what I'd probably need. Guess the next step is trying to figure out how to make nice bends in thicker tubes or rods.


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PostPosted: May 30, 2018, 5:53 pm 
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No tube bending is required. For flex at the fender which is the most likely spot to fail, drilling the fender flange is the easier way if you want to keep the fender close to the tire. Tubing can be much stiffer and lighter than solid rod.

In case you never saw this topic: viewtopic.php?f=23&t=7832

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PostPosted: June 1, 2018, 2:32 pm 
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Location: Frankfort, KY
Cool, will give it a try. In the meantime my wife thought that the interior needed a bit more trim, and she was right. Placed trim around the outer arms (where the aluminum wraps around) and the dash.

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PostPosted: June 1, 2018, 5:03 pm 
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Nice interior. With this latest pic, it looks like you have plenty of room in fender width to avoid drilling the flange, by running a 3/4 or so round tube, slant cut at around 45 degrees, to join a mount plate or 3/4 square tube with the bottom cut off in a bandsaw to make an inverted U channel for mounting the fender to. Probably cut a pie slice out of the 3/4 round to bring it to vertical just outside the fender. Something to think about.

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PostPosted: June 2, 2018, 11:58 am 
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Location: Frankfort, KY
Went to cars and coffee in Nashville this morning, and paid a lot of attention to the fender movement along the way. The roads are pretty bad in places, so there was ample chance to study. Its the rear two "branches" of each stay that is most susceptible to flex. The upper "mounts" that are already in the fenders seem to be very solid right now, so I'm probably going to do almost exactly what you said. The only issue that I had previously was that the stays stuck in too much, but I just need to mount them much more "upright" to the hub itself, along the pivot of the balljoint, and then it won't be a problem.

On another note, the car was a hit at Cars and Coffee. Its the second time that i've been there, but the first one was a less-than-fun experience by comparison since I was having so many issues.

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PostPosted: June 3, 2018, 7:16 am 
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That looks fantastic. Great combination. What a beast!

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PostPosted: June 3, 2018, 8:41 pm 
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Looking good. Man, those are some nice seats you have. I'm jealous (in a nice kinda way). :D

Cheers,

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Damn! That front slip angle is way too large and the Ackerman is just a muddle.

Build Log: viewtopic.php?f=35&t=5886


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PostPosted: June 24, 2018, 12:35 pm 
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Joined: July 18, 2009, 9:40 pm
Posts: 131
Location: Frankfort, KY
Just rebuilt the cycle fender stays. However, it doesn't appear that the upper ball joint bolt threads are long enough to accommodate the cotter pin. Going to see if maybe there are longer shanks available as perhaps I've purchased balljoints that are not common? Before and after;
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Last edited by eh3civic on June 24, 2018, 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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