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Wheeler Dealers - Lotus Esprit 04

A useful look at how to service an aging engine


 


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Engine tasks
" We went to quite a bit of trouble to get this engine out of our Lotus and that's because we've got several jobs to do and it's a lot easier when it's on the bench. Now the most obvious, was this manifold here, because of the crack it sounds like a tank, so we're gonna change that, but also this cam belt here. Because the history of the car, we're not really sure of when the cam belt was last changed, and because it could do an awful lot of damage if it was to break, we're gonna change that as a matter of course." " How much damage? Well, if the belt snaps and the valves smash into the pistons, you're looking at thousands of pounds to fix it." " First, I align the distributor, crank and drive shaft to top dead center by lining up the helpful markings on the pulleys." " Undo the tensioner and the old belt slides off easily, to be replaced by a brand spanking new one for only 33 pounds. Mike will be happy." " The belt's back on, so what I'm doing now is just rotating the engine by hand ah, a complete. Revolution." " Okay,um, I'm just gonna trying to line up against the top dead center, just to see, make sure all our marks still line up. Which they do, which means, I've very successfully replaced our cam belt." " Now it's time to tackle the Exhaust." " Gotta take this manifold off, but the problem is, you can see, these rusty nuts on the rusty studs holding it onto the engine. So, I'm gonna get some heat on these guys, see if I can expand the nut. And wind it off ever so gently. But wish me luck, it's gonna be ever so tricky. This is such a fiddly job it's kind of ridiculous actually, I think if it had been on the car, it would have taken probably half a day to do, but at least this way it's only taken maybe half an hour or so. The good new is, the manifold is now off. The very heavy bit of scrap metal, and I'll now be replacing that with a nice new Exhaust system." " The surface needs to be carefully cleaned or the new manifold gasket won't seal properly. It really does pay to be thorough. I've now prepared the head ready for our new manifold but I'm not gonna be replacing it with another cast iron unit, because although these are quite good for a cheap in fact, for mass production, they're not so good for performance and at the end of the day, we've got a performance vehicle. So what I'm going to be using, is an after-market, stainless steel tubular manifold, that's made up of lots of individual pipes that have got a nice uniform diameter, so the gas flows out much much better, which means ultimately we get better performance and for me, it's also easier to fit." " I'm not gonna fully tighten up these nuts yet. First, I'm gonna offer up the stainless steel collector and make sure it all fits together. The collector will be properly attached later when the engine is back in the car. And since the engine is out, I may as well give it a quick service. So I'm changing the spark plugs, replacing the oil filter and sticking in a new air filter."





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Similar 1/4 mile timeslips to browse:

1998 Lotus Esprit gt3: 12.900 @ 112.000
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1997 Lotus Esprit V8: 13.140 @ 108.950
Mr. J, Engine: stock 3.5L 350-horse V8, Turbos: twin turbos Tires: 285/35ZR-18 (rear)


1990 Lotus Esprit SE: 13.185 @ 110.020
Ron Earp, Engine: 2.2L Turbo, Turbos: Stock Tires: 255/50


 


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