1973  Lotus  Europa  TC  Special  74-3115R
2005 2004 2003 Home Links Sitemap

Dec.  11,  2004.
Had some trash that the usual guys wouldn't pick up, so had a brainstorm and packed it in the TCS.
Went to the local dump, chap at the window; "Wow, a Lotus Europa, haven't seen one of those years,
knew a guy who had an Elan". I smiled and explained that I want to get it weighed. "Of course you do, Lane #1".
860 kg in, 830 kg out.  Let's see now...  830 kg x 2.2 = 1826 lbs.
Minus me, 160 lbs and minus 50 lbs of tools, fire extinguisher and supplies = 1616 lbs.
That's fuel tanks half full, spare tire in front, rear trunk not installed. Sound about right.
Then went for a short drive in the back country. Sunny day, about time. Lot of rain this fall.

Oct.  29,  2004.
The speedo quit working this week, it was bouncing and chirping before...  but it finally quit on Tuesday.
But still made the occassional chirp, however zero mph. Went investigating today and pulled out the speedo.
Yup, the cable is bust... snapped about 18" from the speedo. Guess I have to replace it now.

While I was at it, I compared the S1 steering wheel to the TCS wheel.
The splines and nuts are the same,  but the hubs-flanges are different. Even the columns are not the same.
Think early Spitfire, late Spitfire.   TSC on the left, S1 on the right.


Oct.  19,  2004.
Nothing to report. Busy driving.


July   24,  2004.
Replaced camshaft seal and cork gasket.
Also replaced the rubber half moons in the head, at the end of the camshafts.


Reassembled.  Will start driving it again daily and see what happens.


July   17,  2004.
Removed catalytic converter and re-installed the muffler.
Replaced the original steel pulley on the camshaft for the alternator drive, with an aluminum one.
Looks a lot nicer and 1/4 of the weight. Topped up the engine oil, and fired up the twincam.
Yup, still leaks at the camshaft seal. Guess I should buy a new seal. It's not getting better.


July   12,  2004
Took 3115R to a specialist in Vancouver. Hooked it up to their analyzer,
then changed the needles over to Triumph TR6 ones,  B1AF.
Ran too lean, adjusted a bit, got great numbers, and went to Aircare. Passed with honours.
Thanks, everyone.

See table below...

Then adjusted the B1AF needles a bit richer.  Ordered new B1G ones.
Will make the switch back later when they arrive. Next to remove the cat and replace the muffler.
The cat helped a lot, got up to a working temperature with the B1AF needles, but it's too noisy for me.
Engine backfires sometimes with the TR6 needles. But glad I finally passed.
Get to repeat the facade in 12 months time.

July   06,  2004
Noticed the weight was wrong on my Aircare slip, so did some research. It's also wrong on my registration.
They have it down at 1650 kg.  I told them 1650 lbs.  If I do the math, that should be 750 kg.
That  means the allowable numbers for the test have changed a bit.
Don't know why a lighter car is allowed to pollute more, but I'm not going to argue with them.
So, now I pass NO and HC in the driving test, but still fail the other requirements. Oh well...

July   03,  2004
Started to get serious about passing Aircare. British Columbia's emission money grab...
Was looking at Ken's excellent site, http://pw1.netcom.com/~krk/lotus/
He has an article about how installing a cat helped him to pass his emissions test.
Looked interesting, thought I'd try it. What did I have to lose..?

Went to a franchise muffler shop, asked about replacing the muffler with a temporary catalytic converter.
They wanted $500 for the job. No thanks. Then went to an auto parts place and bought a generic cat for $100.
Next drove around the corner to a hot rod custom exhaust shop and asked some questions.
Drove home and removed the muffler, not easy, but got it out.
Went back to the custom shop...  with no muffler, very loud !!!.

Half an hour and $100 later, drove out. The cat is quite a bit louder that the muffler, too loud for me...
but this is a test.  If I pass, the cat comes off and the muffler goes back on till next year.
At least that was the theory. Did some errands to warm up the engine, then over to Aircare.
---Failed Again---    The numbers are lower than the first time, but not low enough.

Larger, different picture here...  http://www.europa24fps.com/cat1.jpg

I did not touch the timing, nor the points, nor the Strombergs, aside from raising the idle to 1100 rpm.
Fuel was part methanol, new oil and filter, new sparkplugs, no air cleaners.
The plugs are the base of the carbs were removed, hoping the holes would lean out the mixture a bit.
Driving test May 25 July 3
July 12
 (cat + needles)
Allowable   (corrected)
Hydrocarbons ppm 413   pass 331    pass 19    pass 520
Carbon Monoxide % 8.12  fail 8.43   fail 0.00   pass 5.14
Nitrogen Oxides ppm 178   pass 0.00   pass 455    pass  5608
Idle test May 25 July 3 July 12 Allowable  (corrected)
Hydrocarbons ppm 2000  fail 1581  fail 208   pass 698
Carbon Monoxide % 9.99   fail 9.37   fail 2.65   pass 5.54

CO, July 12...  Yes, it really is zero-zero-zero.
NOx, July 3...   Yes, it really is zero-zero-zero.
Idle Test, HC + CO, May 25...   I think those numbers are the maximums on the scale.
So quite possibly could have been even higher.

Interesting, but still annoying. Now I have more work and money to spend before test #3.

June  26,  2004
Been kinda busy past few weeks with work. So not much progress with the emissions problem.
Worked on the oil leak though. Thought I fixed it but no, not yet. Still seeping out through the
oil seal on the camshaft where the pulley is mounted for the alternator. Did more cleaning above and below.
Had an aluminum alternator pulley made up. Looks lot better that the original, and lighter too.


June  06,  2004
Not much to say,  3115R works.
Took it through Aircare (BC's emission testing), failed with honours.
Now the fun starts. Going to lean it out, new plugs, check timing, clean the air cleaners, change oil + filter.
Filled the tanks with methanol blend.  Most likely will buy a catalytic converter to
temporarily replace the muffler. Then try Aircare again. Got five weeks before the renewal is due.
Gave the engine a bath on Saturday morning, and cleaned up the garage.

March 28,  2004
Decided enough was enough, and replaced the leaking coolant pipe. The grommet
in the frame where the pipe passes through had split, allowing the pipe to rub against the frame.
I cut the  old pipe at the rear and pulled it out the front. Cut a new piece of pipe and joined it up.
Eventually will replace both pipes with stainless, not now though, don't want to lift the engine.
Everything seems fine so start driving it again. Weather looks good for a few days.
But 3115R needs a bath above and below.
2005 2004 2003 Home Links Sitemap