Lotus Elan

Steering column earth, Plus 2 early style

PostPost by: The Veg » Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:36 am

I have the early style column without the ignition lock. Where exactly is the shaft supposed to have an earth-connection? There is an earth-wire from the chassis to a bolt in what looks like a fill-plug on the steering rack, and I get great continuity from that wire to chassis, but infinite ohms (open) from that wire to the column shaft and from the shaft to any earthed point. Nothing in my manuals or electrical diagrams sheds any light on this.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Sun Oct 20, 2019 11:04 am

Do you have a continuity wire on the column flexible joint?
Without that the rubber will break the circuit.
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PostPost by: The Veg » Sun Oct 20, 2019 2:59 pm

Good question, will check that.
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PostPost by: Bigbaldybloke » Sun Oct 20, 2019 4:57 pm

Photos attached. I have changed out the column joint from the original rubber disc type to a UJ type. Earth continuity is not important for me as my Plus 2 does not have the horn button in the centre of the wheel, but has it on the end of the indicator column switch so has a dedicated earth wire to the switch contact.
Attachments
e64dbbd7-578b-472a-b77d-6eb2382ede06.jpeg and
83f1ac3b-8181-4b44-b498-21cde932a7f3.jpeg and
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PostPost by: The Veg » Mon Oct 21, 2019 1:01 am

I'll admit I'd never really looked at the steering shaft joint. Today's inspection reveals that the wire is there, but I read no continuity from the chassis wire to the joint wire, or from the joint wire to the shaft. Without thinking about it too much, I think that whoever was there before me mis-installed the wire.

Another member PM'd me to say that in addition to the electrical benefit, the steering would be more precise with the U-joint, so I'll be ordering one of those now.

And of course all this would happen right after wrestling the column back into being secured to the car! :lol:
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img_20191020_175829.jpg and
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PostPost by: The Veg » Mon Oct 21, 2019 1:34 am

One more question about all this. Pardon my ignorance; maybe some future n00b will benefit from this as well. The U-joints I'm finding are longer than my old flex-joint. Am I correct to assume that I can adjust for this difference at the clamp between the upper and lower columns?
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Mon Oct 21, 2019 5:41 am

It's a change many people make.
There should be enough adjustment available in the slip joint.
See picture from gallery

http://images.lotuselan.net/lel/12117/0 ... Joints.jpg

Looking at your existing joint I'm not convinced that the wire would provide continuity. Mine runs between the pinch bolts themselves completely bridging the joint.
Like this
http://images.lotuselan.net/lel/50490/0 ... nt-009.jpg
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PostPost by: Bigbaldybloke » Mon Oct 21, 2019 10:42 am

I don’t think there is that much difference in length between the two types. The left hand one in the picture gallery photo looks to be missing the rubber flex disc so is shorter than it should be.
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PostPost by: The Veg » Mon Oct 21, 2019 11:10 am

Thanks guys. Mark, I think we're in agreement about the wire. Somebody before me was in there and probably didn't remember how it was supposed to go.
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PostPost by: Chrispy » Tue Oct 22, 2019 10:40 am

Bigbaldybloke wrote:Photos attached. I have changed out the column joint from the original rubber disc type to a UJ type. Earth continuity is not important for me as my Plus 2 does not have the horn button in the centre of the wheel, but has it on the end of the indicator column switch so has a dedicated earth wire to the switch contact.


Where did you get your uni joint? I've been looking for one here in Australia without much success. I'm sick of that stupid floppy orignial one. New bushes and bolts and it's still vague.
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PostPost by: mbell » Tue Oct 22, 2019 11:46 am

Most +2's have a triumph spitfire collapsible column and rack. I just order one from one of the Triumph parts suppliers.

If you have the very early none collapsible ford column I am not sure.
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PostPost by: Bigbaldybloke » Tue Oct 22, 2019 3:34 pm

It was quite a while ago but pretty sure I got my column joint from Kelvedon motors, they still list them in stock at approx £32 plus vat. They have the original type too. Pretty sure that it’s the same joint for both types of column.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Tue Oct 22, 2019 4:12 pm

It's a triumph part so use a triumph specialist :D

For example Rimmer have them (£31 inc vat) and Canley £22 inc vat
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