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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: January 20, 2018, 2:57 pm 
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Has anyone that uses the Miata differential kept the smaller plates on the bottom - the ones that go through the big bolt and use two 12mm head nuts to attach to the subframe?

It looks like it would be straight-forward enough to weld some nuts to RS7 (see photo) and retain them. Ideas?

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PostPosted: January 29, 2018, 12:14 am 
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I decided to forgo the factory underside differential mounts shown above. I made a pair of plates out of 3mm plate instead. I ordered some GarageStar Delrin bushes to mount the diff solidly. I had to use my press to get the old mounts out - two steps, first without any press plate to get the center rubber bit out, then with a plate to push out the metal retainer. Then cleaned up the diff and painted it. Really happy with how all of this turned out. I made the plates for the diff nose mount and firewall mount as well - pics of the mount once I get the diff back in the chassis.

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You can see the lower plates I fabbed on this shot:

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I got word from two suppliers as well. My nosecone is finished - and is the color I've decided on for my Seven! Looks awesome - it'll take a while to get here from the UK though. My wishbones are all wrapped up as well. The last ones were the rear uppers.

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I received some Land Rover engine mounts to use for mounting the Miata engine too, so that'll happen soon. I'll post the part numbers, but they are pretty ubiquitous and cheap. Progress continues!

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PostPosted: February 8, 2018, 1:43 am 
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Lots of work today - didn't look like a full day of work when it was all finished though!

Fully welded the chassis in preparation for putting the suspension mounts on. Also smoothed the welds that needed to be on the outer seams and underside. After all of it, no warping! The measurements are dead on, and all of the levels show, well, level.

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Once that was done, I finished up the differential nose mount. I'm really happy with how it turned out, including the use of the Miata stuff. Please feel free to critique as needed.

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Next up is the engine/gearbox mounting, followed by the center tunnel.

Just for fun I weighed the chassis. Without the center tunnel, the whole welded-up chassis weighed in at 93 pounds.

Feel free to provide input!!

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PostPosted: February 8, 2018, 5:55 pm 
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Looks like some good progress. Just one question. How do you get the differential out if needed in the future for repair or?

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Roy


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PostPosted: February 8, 2018, 10:07 pm 
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It unbolts and you pull it out just like the original Saturn plans. It's easy for now. I'll have to see what will have to come out to remove it once all the components are on. Right now, I can pull it through the top after I unbolt it.

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PostPosted: March 19, 2018, 4:29 pm 
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More progress! I've run out of welding gas though, so I need to make a run once I get some time off of work again. I finished up the rear perches, and the big progress was getting the suspension mounted up. So far, so good!

Photos for proof:

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PostPosted: March 19, 2018, 4:33 pm 
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More of the suspension:

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Now to finish up the rear frame (after I get my welding gas) and make some dummy shocks to make it roll around! I'll be tackling the steering and mounting the engine/gearbox after that. Exciting :D

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PostPosted: March 19, 2018, 5:14 pm 
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Yes, exciting indeed. First time off the table is a big step.

Progress is amazing and build is looking great.

Cheers,

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PostPosted: March 19, 2018, 9:11 pm 
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RandyBMC wrote:
More progress! I've run out of welding gas though, so I need to make a run once I get some time off of work again. I finished up the rear perches, and the big progress was getting the suspension mounted up. So far, so good!


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I'm curious about the "bend" in your front LCA. It would seem that it puts more natural camber into the front end?

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PostPosted: March 20, 2018, 10:35 am 
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It actuallly avoids an issue using the Miata uprights going through the full range of steering. It doesn't hurt camber though!

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PostPosted: March 20, 2018, 11:26 am 
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RandyBMC wrote:
It actuallly avoids an issue using the Miata uprights going through the full range of steering. It doesn't hurt camber though!


Thanks! I'll have to look into it as I'm planning on using Miata uprights on my build.

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PostPosted: March 20, 2018, 12:54 pm 
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The bend does nothing to change suspension geometries. Think of the plane created by the ball joint and the inner suspension months. It makes no difference what path is taken to get the 3 parts linked. A bend or not, those 3 points determine a plane and as a result, the geometry.

The bend can help in centering the range of motion of the ball joint. I did a similar technique for that very reason on the upper control arm to match the KPI angle. It allows the rod end (my upper ball joint) to be more centered within it's range.

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PostPosted: March 20, 2018, 2:03 pm 
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Again, it was to avoid an issue with steering interference, but what you stated is confusing me a bit if I'm honest. It certainly matters what angle you mount the balljoint on the arm itself as to how you can set camber, doesn't it?

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PostPosted: March 20, 2018, 2:25 pm 
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Randy, if I understand your confusion correctly, No. It doesn't affect how you adjust camber at all. The lower BJ is a ball. The center of which, is the point that the upright rotates around. A control arm could be designed to locate that ball in the same location with or without that tilt. Once the center of the BJ is located, the only concern of the angle is to ensure that you have enough range of motion to accommodate all variations of angles during left turn, right turn, full bump, full droop and ensure these can be met in any anticipated adjustment of camber and toe-in etc.

It certainly has everything to do with the original design of the control arm. You can't design it and build it for being flat then bend the tubes and expect the ball's center to be in the same location. Maybe you'll have enough adjustment range to accommodate the change, but possibly not.

Does that make sense?

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PostPosted: March 20, 2018, 3:47 pm 
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That last sentence puts us on the same page. I was thinking original design, and even if it is a ball, you have to mount it in the right plane (not upside down as an extreme example). :cheers:

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