Lotus Elan

Alan Voigt's 5 speed conversion

PostPost by: memini55 » Fri Jun 16, 2006 2:56 am

Anyone on the home side of the pond(UK) that can advise to current costs and availabillity of Alan's kit. Looking to put one in an S2. Can it be easily shipped state side? Have read most of the arcives and it sounds to be a great choice. Is Alan only available by phone or snail mail?
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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Fri Jun 16, 2006 7:57 pm

I got this handout from Alan in March 2004
Attachments
Voigts5-Speed_Sm.jpg and
this is a couple years old but the info is probably close
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PostPost by: seaandmoor » Fri Jun 16, 2006 8:29 pm

I just got my Alan Voigts box a couple of weeks ago and in car now.
Unfortunately, he is only contactable by telephone or letter and doesn't need all the websites because people seek him out on reputation.
I found him straight to the point, as honest as the pope and does what he says he'll do. Need one ask for more!
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PostPost by: bill308 » Sat Jun 17, 2006 1:30 am

seaandmoor,

Would you kindly express your evaluation of the package?

How was the installation?

Was anything else required to complete installation?

How do the ratios feel?

What rear end gear ratios are you using?

Is there much difference in the weight compared to the original 4-speed?

Thanks,
Bill
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PostPost by: emdemas » Sat Jun 17, 2006 6:04 pm

Are there a group of folks in the US interesed in this conversion? Maybe a group buy can save us some money?

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PostPost by: memini55 » Sun Jun 18, 2006 1:42 am

It would be great to try for a group buy! Shipping will be the big hurdle but might be worth a try. I for one am ready to try a conversion.
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PostPost by: memini55 » Sun Jun 18, 2006 3:21 pm

It would be great to try for a group buy! Shipping will be the big hurdle but might be worth a try. I for one am ready to try a conversion.
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PostPost by: sgbooth » Sun Jun 18, 2006 3:42 pm

memini55,

Please let me know if you get a freebee box!

This idea of multi posting/polling could be a good idea.

Regards,
Stuart.
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PostPost by: sgbooth » Sun Jun 18, 2006 4:02 pm

memini55,

Please let me know if you get a freebee box!

This idea of multi posting/polling could be a good idea.

Regards,
Stuart.
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PostPost by: seaandmoor » Sun Jun 18, 2006 10:42 pm

Hello Bill (308)
Not sure about weight but the bellhousing is a lightweight alloy and I didn't actually notice any difference without weighing one against the other.
First gear is a better ratio otherwise the other gears feel similar to the original box. Then there is fifth. I'm running a 3.77 final in the diff and it pulls away in fifth up quite a steep hill near me but also 'burbles' all day at 70 miles per hour (112 kilometres per hour) at about 2450 rpm.
The gear lever is slightly shorter.
If you have a lotus 5spd box you will need to source a four speed propshaft and clutch pressure plate otherwise your existing four speed propshaft/plate should do. (the two shafts are different lengths)
The hydraulic clutch release system is included and more 'direct'.
As with all things it's possible to be a bit too hasty. It DOES fit. Any apparent difficulties can be thought through, resolved and it all mates up.
Carefull to check the speedo drive connection/wheel is absolutely sound before putting it all back in.
Good night from the other side of the pond!
Regards, Seaandmoor.
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PostPost by: RotoFlexible » Mon Jun 19, 2006 4:41 pm

I would be interested in this conversion. It addresses one of my chief complaints: extended periods of highway driving with the engine wearing itself out at 4,000 RPM for no reason. The drivetrain is due to come out and get freshened up soon, which would be a great opportunity to make the switch.
Andrew Bodge
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I love the sound of a torque wrench in the morning. Sounds like... progress.
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PostPost by: bill308 » Tue Jun 20, 2006 12:09 am

seaandmoor.

Thank you very much for your reply. You're the only user I know who has first hand knowledge of the conversion so please bear with me.

I have a semi close ratio 4-speed with 3.55 rear end. I assume I would need to have my drive shaft shortened and have the supplied yoke welded on. Is this correct?

I know the box isn't a 4-speed, which I find a little knothchy, yet quit delightful. How's the gear change quality?

How close to the original location is the gear shift lever exit from the tunnel?

Your transmission ratio seem to be near ideal. Do all the boxes supplied offer the same gear ratios?

I also assume the T9 box supplied is used. Does Alan go through the box prior to dispatch to ensure bearings and synchros are up to snuff? I'd hate to put the box in and then find it has issues that require R&R.

All in all, this seems like a very nice enhancement to the Elan. Over here, a lot of traffic on the interstate cruises at 80 mph, so the overdrive 5th gear would transform the car into a long distance cruiser without quashing it's street fighter status.

As of right now, I would definately consider participating in a group buy if that could be arranged. I would think that there could be savings on shipping. I wonder if Alan would consider a slight discount for a group buy?

Anyone else interested?

Bill
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PostPost by: johnc » Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:17 am

I am interested in this conversion as well, but I would require a bunch more information before I am will to pop for one.

In the US the T9 tranny can be obtained from a Merkur XR4Ti donor. I assume the cost of shipping this cast iron box is significant. Therefore, perhaps for the US market a partial kit would be more appropriate.

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PostPost by: worzel » Tue Jun 20, 2006 8:13 am

Hi all

Some of you will be familiar with this message content since I've been attempting to sell one of these conversions (half-heartedly admittedly) for over a year.

My car, a 72 sprint, has run one of these boxes for the past 7 years so you might find my comments of interest. The box in mine is a T9 with a modified shift. I didn't do the conversion but owners might be interested to know that the person who did the alterations actually sold the idea to P Matty years ago who then offered the same package to customers. It's an old idea and actually was first done by this guy back in 1982 when he converted his own car so it has been well tested.

In my case the lever ends up in the same place as the original courtesy of alterations to the original alloy tail casing. A. Voight's uses a purpose cast item but in operation there is no difference between the two.

Not sure on this point but the conversion in mine is only suitable for non-spaceframe cars (because the tubes on spaceframes foul the tail of the box- possibly the Voights conversion is narrower at this point). Otherwise, apart from the different clutch operating mechanism, both conversions are pretty much the same.

Re the questions about ratios- there are alternatives available (possibly from BurtonPower (at a price). Mine uses a box from a 2.8i capri with a 0.82 fifth. On 80% profile 13 inch tyres with a 3.54 diff this gives an accurate 22.7 mph top so the owner who says his runs at 2460 revs at 70 is miscalculating- 70mph in mine is just over 3000 revs. On 2.8 sourced boxes there is the option of upping 5th to 0.75 which in my case would give 25mph/1000 revs. This is quite easily done and not expensive.

Problems on installation- none really- you need a new prop and a different friction plate but the clutch cover is the std item. You also need to fabricate a new gearbox bracket for the rubber mounting but again this is not difficult and a new speedo cable is required or you can amalgamate an elan one with a sierra item for about a fiver!. The bellhousing is taken from a BDA which by coincidence (very nice of Ford to do this) uses the same bolt/stud pattern as the elan block and matches the T9 box so no sandwich plate. Fitting is a straightforward swap and undetectable from underneath (apart from the differing colour of the bellhousing).

In use- transforms the car but be warned it doesn't make the elan a limo- noiselevels don't seem much different (and my car is well soundproofed) but 70 is an easy gait. Even with 5th I still find a higher top could be used so I'm upping the ratio as explained earlier as even up long motorway inclines it still pulls strongly in top.

The box I'm selling is an odd one. It was one of a batch thrown out by Ford's experimental division after they unsuccessfullt tried something similar in gearlever relocation so it has never been on a car which means the internals have never seen any use. I did the conversion myself because the box in mine is "chirruping" in 3rd (not conversion related I should add) so I was going to do a swap over to save time but have instead decided I'd prefer to retain my old box and alter 5th.

It's for sale at £700 so with the other bits you need this would allow a conversion for about £1000 which is quite a saving if you are at all handy with a screwdriver!

If anybody is SERIOUSLY interested get back to me. I'm in Merseyside, UK so shipping to US would probably be too expensive but if anybody wants to see one working in my own car I'll gladly demonstrate (reasonable distances from Liverpool please).

Either e-mail me or ring 0151 480 8400 for more info.

Regards

John
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