Lotus Elan

Tyre question?

PostPost by: MarkDa » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:16 pm

I remember CN36 - back in the day I had them on my escort.
A big improvement on the standard 155 tyre on my 1.6.
That was a great little car with a two barrel carb that would run at 80mph on the first choke and go off very fast when the second was opened.
Gave some flashing 'executive' cars a bit of a shock when I pulled away rather than over to get out of their way!

I think that if I was tempted to go for the retro look I'd use Longstone rather than a Chinese look alike.
Last edited by MarkDa on Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:36 pm

Out of interest, does everyone keep the Tubes or go Tubeless? i've heard a few people using the same size tyre say stock rims should have tubes to stop them getting rolled off during heavy cornering........ I went tubeless and i haven't had one come off yet.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:04 pm

Whilst the rims don't have the modern safety hump that we're now used to, the J pattern rim was practically universal at the time and many high performance heavy cars had tubeless tyres.
Unless tyre pressures are ridiculously low I don't think that breaking the rim seal is at all likely.
Providing the rims are airtight (basically painted? ) then they should work fine.
I've never had any problems with deflation.
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Mon Jun 11, 2018 7:45 pm

Thats more or less what i was thinking but Lotus wouldn't have fitted tubes for no reason, i guess it was just a different tyre back then.
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PostPost by: dougal cawley » Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:47 am

The 155HR13 XAS https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/155hr1 ... as-ff.html is a tube type tyre, which means that regardless of what kind of wheel you fit it on it must have a tube because the tyre has not been coated to make it air tight.

The 145HR13 Cinturato CA67 https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/set-of ... -ca67.html , and the 175/70VR13 Cinturato CA67 https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/catalo ... gory/8985/ and the 175/70R13 CR6ZZ https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/catalo ... gory/8985/ are all tubeless. which means that if you are happy you are on a tubeless wheel you can run without a tube. However, because they are 70% profile or taller they can be fitted with an inner tube if you have doubt about your wheel or if it is a spoked wheel then you can run an inner tube if you want.

Wire wheels should run tubes.

You should not fit an inner tube in anything lower than 70% profile. (ie you should not fit an inner tube in a 185/65R13)

We suggest if you have concerns about weather your rim is suitable or not, just put a tube in it.
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PostPost by: el-saturn » Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:32 am

only this fellas: buy appropriate tyres, like yokohama a539: if you're more ambitious a semi slick: BUT NEVER TYRES WHICH ARE MADE for cars with 50hp!! like the ones most of you drive!! sandy -- it's just way beyond me and just can't understand why or where you need to save ££!!
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:34 am

3581510a-283a-4f51-a0c6-d45eaa884404.png and
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PostPost by: dougal cawley » Tue Jun 12, 2018 10:54 am

Phew! El-Saturn you are absolutely right to buy an appropriate tyre. However i'm sorry but yokohama a539 is not an appropriate tyre for a road going Lotus Elan. They don't make tyres anywhere near the right construction for your car unless you have dialed a load of adverse camber into your car, probably changed the caster and stiffened the springs and basically turned your car into a track car that is pretty unpleasant to drive on the road. That is a wholey different tyre to what an Elan is set up to suit. I'm not saying that is wrong, but it is different. The Yokohama a539 is a great tyre but only

handling.jpg and
here is my picture demonstrating the different handling of a classic car with relatively soft springs and without the relatively massive amounts of adverse camber you would need to fit modern tyres


If you want to go up in size then the Cinturato CN36 https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/pirelli-cinturato.html will handle miles better on Lotus Elan than any 60% profile tyre unless you dramatically change everything to suit it.

If not stick standard and fit the Michelin 155HR13 XAS

However El-Saturn is absolutely on the nail; don't just buy cheap tyres, buy the right thing, which you now can do. There is even a new 145HR13 Cinturato CA67 https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/pirell ... /ca67.html for the early cars, which will be a real treat compared to the modern unsuitable tyres they have until now been forced to fit.
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:38 am

One of the challenges with selecting a tyre for the Elan is that it was totally different from other sports cars of the day so "classic" tyre recommendations are not directly applicable.

The Elan suspension was softer with greater roll but better camber compensation for roll compared to Mg,s TR, etc of the day

When debating tyres you need to start from the best which is a modern road legal "track day" tyre as these perform best on an Elan with acceptable life given the usage of Elans these days - e.g. 175/60 x13 Yokohama A050R or equivalents from Dunlop, Avon, Toyo etc. From there anything is a step down in performance based on cost, life, appearance etc.

It thus depends on what are your priorities on what tyres you select.

These stickier tyres create some issues with Elan handling balance compared with the original as they can result in the car sitting down to much on the outer rear wheel and snap roll over steer being hard to manage as a result but thats getting into the next level of detail of on the limit handling

If you want the ultimate track tyres and its legal in your class and cost is no barrier use modern new formula ford front tyres shaved to the depth and life of your choice :D worth 50 hp in lap times in my experience :lol:

cheers
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PostPost by: dougal cawley » Tue Jun 12, 2018 2:05 pm

Hmm, I don't really agree with this bit-

"One of the challenges with selecting a tyre for the Elan is that it was totally different from other sports cars of the day so "classic" tyre recommendations are not directly applicable."

Because this bit here means you do need a classic tyre-

"The Elan suspension was softer with greater roll"

although this bit here does go a little way to counteract my argument-

"but better camber compensation for roll compared to Mg,s TR, etc of the day"

But then i totally disagree with this bit unless you have dramatically altered your car which would include much stiffer springs and made it more into a track day car.

"When debating tyres you need to start from the best which is a modern road legal "track day" tyre as these perform best on an Elan with acceptable life given the usage of Elans these days - e.g. 175/60 x13 Yokohama A050R or equivalents from Dunlop, Avon, Toyo etc. From there anything is a step down in performance based on cost, life, appearance etc. "

Yes i agree with - "It thus depends on what are your priorities on what tyres you select.

"These stickier tyres create some issues with Elan handling balance compared with the original as they can result in the car sitting down to much on the outer rear wheel and snap roll over steer being hard to manage as a result but thats getting into the next level of detail of on the limit handling"

the snap roll oversteer is demonstrated in this picture

handling.jpg and
the picture shows how a classic car with the greater movement of the suspoention tghan modern wider square shouldered low profile tyres it climbs onto the shoulder of the tyre then lets go suddenly then grips again violently.


"If you want the ultimate track tyres and its legal in your class and cost is no barrier use modern new formula ford front tyres shaved to the depth and life of your choice :D worth 50 hp in lap times in my experience :lol:"

I agree, but it is important to say that is a track tyre, with modified cars not standard road tyres. they will handle much better on a period tyre.

this article about Porsche tyres is interesting. https://www.longstonetyres.co.uk/classi ... guide.html

Why did Colin Chapman not fit low profile tyres to the Elan?

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PostPost by: msd1107 » Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:48 pm

"Why did Colin Chapman not fit low profile tyres to the Elan?"

Probably because they were not available. The Elite, Elan, and Europa used 80 series tires. 155-15, 145-13, 155-13, 165-13.

However, depending on your car's fender clearances, on a S4 and later Elan, it is possible to go to 185/70-13 tires. The suspension seems to handle these well, and in my car it improved the road feel and precision.

A first upgrade was from 155-13 to 165-13 for a small reduction in cruising RPM's. 185/70 has the same rev/mile figure as 165.

S1's came with 145-13, and sometime it was problematical to upgrade to 155-13 due to fender clearance issues.
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PostPost by: dougal cawley » Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:21 pm

"Why did Colin Chapman not fit low profile tyres to the Elan?"

Probably because they were not available. The Elite, Elan, and Europa used 80 series tires. 155-15, 145-13, 155-13, 165-13.


Nope! It is because they did not handle as well on wider low profile tyres. (and possibly because they were heavier too.)
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Tue Jun 12, 2018 5:44 pm

I suspect Lotus put smaller tyres on to keep the un-sprung weight down but lighter cars with skinny tyres are way more fun and safer in rain/snow (which is handy for an every day car)
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:41 pm

Dougal
Whilst you made reference to a commercial post I'm not sure you fully declared your interest in Longstone Tyres.
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PostPost by: dougal cawley » Wed Jun 13, 2018 10:35 am

MarkDa wrote:Dougal
Whilst you made reference to a commercial post I'm not sure you fully declared your interest in Longstone Tyres.


Hi

Yep, However yesterday i changed my signature to make that clearer.

And this short film demonstrates our dedication to tyre safety. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxx1Zn- ... ZSWsg0qkkh

And to Grizzly - Smaller thinner tyres are nicer and more fun in the dry. Lighter thinner tyres are nicer to drive on all the time. wider lower profile tyres, might return better lap times on the track. However what you do on the track has very little to do with what happens on the road.
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