Lotus Elan

bell housing to join Lotus 5 speed box to twin cam

PostPost by: ditechspain » Wed Jun 26, 2019 4:21 pm

Apologies if this has been posted and answered before, but if it was I'm not getting the search right.

Was the bell housing between the Lotus "Maxi" 5 speed box and the Twin cam, as used in the +2, particular to Lotus? If not, any suggestions as to what vehicle it came off, or alternatives to the alloy Lotus one?
I was thinking of a box off an Eclat or an Elite into a +2.
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Wed Jun 26, 2019 7:41 pm

Just Lotus ,Elan Plus2 and a few later Elans..

John :wink:
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PostPost by: mbell » Wed Jun 26, 2019 10:46 pm

The elite/eclat box also has different talk housings
'73 +2 130/5 RHD, now on the road and very slowly rolling though a "restoration"
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:00 am

if starting with an elite / eclat box you need to change the bell housing and tail section. Both of these components are rarer than hens teeth and are the valuable part of the Lotus 5 speed. So you may as well find a complete Lotus 5 speed box.

If you cant find a complete Lotus box and want to start with the Elite / Eclat version then its a more challenging journey

The bell housing can be substituted by modifying one of a number of alloys bell housings designed to go between Ford boxes and the Kent block bell housing pattern so they can be bolted to the Lotus centre case. I know of no one doing this on a commercial basis so each one is a one off special.

The tail housing is more problematic and the best alternative appears to be to cut and shut the elite / eclat tail housing to replicate the Plus 2 tail housing and this requires a lot of specialist welding and machining expertise and again is not something that is commercially available and each will be a one off special.

If all that is to much then adapting a 5 speed ford box is somewhat easier even if it does not have the nice "Lotus" cast into the casing top cover :D

cheers
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PostPost by: ditechspain » Thu Jun 27, 2019 11:28 am

Thanks for that very complete reply.
I managed to pick up a reportedly serviceable Eclat-style box for not much more than people were asking for just the empty casing. It's a spare for an existing working +2 130/5 speed, so if it's this much trouble, the bell housing will come off the existing box if(when??) needed. I just like to have as much as possible already fitted. I knew the back end was special to the Elan.
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