The Saga of LSB 2072



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Parts 1

Parts 2

Parts 3

Engine / Trans.

Frame / Skin

Progress 1

Progress 2

Progress 3

Progress 4

Progress 5

Instr. Panel


Almost Done

DAF Home

Progress 2

It's been a quiet few weeks up here. My holidays were spent replacing several major kitchen appliances, and closing in an open section of our sun room so we could get the heat back on in there. Vermont is a great state, but the winters are cold and too long.

But then, imagine the frustration of doing a project like this while it's great driving weather outside.

Jan. 8, 2012

I did a trial fit of the front suspension several weeks ago, and things seemed to fit OK, so I went about dealing with other issues.

When it came to doing what I hoped would be the final front end assembly, problems turned up.

Not only was the upper control arm angled too far forward, but the steering would bind when I tried to move the wheel in either direction.

Demonstrating yet again my amazing talent for overlooking the obvious, it turned out that the uprights were badly bent.

The magnitude of the bend becomes obvious when gripping the trunion threads in my trusty WWII-vintage South Bend lathe.

The tail stock should be pointing right down the rotational axis of the upright.

Not even close.

To check the spindles, I smeared some grease on the taper and set them lightly in a new upright.

Rotating them by hand, the total indicated runout was 0.029" for one and 0.070" for the other. (!!) I won't even bother checking for cracks. New ones are on order.

The original uprights, with a new one (left).

After removing the black paint from the old uprights, there were still traces of "Lotus" Gray.

Although it was possible to force the upper control arm rearward enough to bolt things together, I opted instead to reset the angle of the inner mounting by bending the plates back slightly and relocating the forward hole.

This was when I discovered the frame wasn't brazed. Nice welds, though.

Things line up well now, though I don't suspect that I'll ever see the specified 9° swivelpin inclination.

This is 5.8°. (Photoshop certified.)

Anther problem was the exhaust header. The flange was flame-cut and sloppily done at that.

Note the distance between the edge of the gasket (scribed) and the inside edge of the flange opening.

It has since been built up with weld and re-machined flat.

So at this point, the only components forward of the engine that aren't new are the steering rack and brake caliper castings.

The steering rack is used, but is new to the car. Based on its lack of steering limit spacers and its long tie rods, it has never been in a Lotus Seven before.

That leaves only the brake caliper castings as likely being original.

This is evidence of some serious front end damage. The impact required to bend the uprights and spindles to the extent that they were would be huge. This tends to reinforce the theory that LSB2072 spent time as a race car, probably enduring several "spots of bother" (as our British friends might say) before being retired.

A bit more evidence to support this theory, was that the calipers arrived with carbon-kevlar pads in them.

To be continued...

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