Lotus Elan

earth problem?

PostPost by: wildoliver » Sun Oct 23, 2005 10:32 am

I think iv already answered my own question but...........

72 sprint, on way home the other night from a night out the rev counter started to bounce and the dash lights were looking dim, turn off the dash lights and the rev counter is fine, starting it up yesterday to go out the battery was pretty flat, jumped her off to go for a run to charge it up, it was raining switch wipers on, wipers dont work but dash lights come on and rev counter drops to 0.

Switch wipers off dash lights go off and rev counter works again, then wipers start to work on their own, I guess i need to drop the dash forwards and get in behind, it sounds like a couple of faulty earths causing this problem.

Also does anyone else have any problems with plug fouling in traffic?
Normal running the engines spot on, sit in traffic for 15 mins and it starts to cough and need help to idle, get out on the road again and its fine after a good rev up to clear the plugs out.
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Sun Oct 23, 2005 11:52 am

I am NOT an expert on this an doubtless you will get a multitude of replies and suggestions. BEFORE you start pulling out the dash remember that the problem can lie elsewhere and that you are probably getting some sort of feedback through various circuits giving you your symptoms. First point of call would be the main earthing point behind the spare tyre in the boot - it gets all wet and mucky down there - give that a good clean up and plenty of copperslip and your problem might just disappear. If not good luck - another one that gave me a problem is the earth behind the solenoid (I didn't even know it was there!!!!!)

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PostPost by: wildoliver » Sun Oct 23, 2005 1:07 pm

Ah thanks!!!

Didnt know about those two, I shall certainly do them first, as they are easy to get too!!!

In fairness dash will have to come out at some point because the wiring back there is scary!!!!
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PostPost by: tvacc » Sun Oct 23, 2005 4:16 pm

The major connections for the ground on the Elan are the strap from the chassis to the engine. Then there is the connection at the solonoid..but that is not a main one as it gets it from just a small wire. The next one working back toward the rear is the bolt that goes down into the chassis at the bottom of the dash..down near the lighter socket. The next is back on the chassis in the boot...right near the gas tank.

Sometimes the strap gets corroded..or the connections get corroded...that is where most of the problems start. That starts to go south..then the others start to carry more load...and since they are most just 12 and 14 gauge...they get screwed up...from the current overload.

Tony Vaccaro
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PostPost by: chrishewett » Sun Oct 23, 2005 7:03 pm

I had a similar problem and thanks to help on this forum I traced it back to the main earth for the dash. This is on the offside just under the dash on the top of the transmission tunnel. It is fairly easy to get at when you have removed the underdash trims. The bolt is one that holds the body to the chassis. You will find a few earth leads that in my case were grey, although the book says they are black. Having cleaned it all up and used a new bolt all was well. I also took a new earth from the bottom of the bolt to the starter motor mounting as belt and braces, with an elan the more earths the merrier!
I hope this helps.
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:44 am

...'tis the ghost of The Prince of Darkness if I've ever seen it. Who else can bugger the wipers and tach and spark plugs and dash lights all together by loosening a nut or two? DO NOT drive this car on Halloween without going from front to rear and tightening every nut and bolt related to the earthing of this vehicle.
...and seriously, I don't recommend removing the dash either. (difficult) It's going to look scary back there no matter how tidy the car is. I'd take out the driver's seat. (easy), prepare compact bright adustable lighting, get some old cozy thick blanket and lay it on the driver's side floor, maybe add some protection from your shoes up on the body behind the seat, squirm in and lie down on your back, then repair/replace wires from below 'til the cows come home.
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PostPost by: wildoliver » Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:06 pm

All sorted, was the bottom earth bolt for the dash, and the second earth to the heater box that were loose, also removed the stupid aftermarket hazard flasher and repaired the wires it chopped in to now my indicators work properley, now i just have a couple of minor jobs to do and the car is as left the factory! (in fact better because it all works! ;) )
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