Pre-Flight checks

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Pre-Flight checks

Postby elaverick » Fri 22.06.2018, 21:35

I’m heading to London tomorrow with the Mrs. We’re planning on taking the Lotus as the weather is meant to be good.
It’s the longest journey the car has taken since I bought it (little under a year ago). It’s recently had new injectors (fitted by qualified professionals... I.e. not me). But what should I be looking to check/refill/replace to ensure it’s got the best chance of making it there and back under its own steam?
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Giniw » Fri 22.06.2018, 21:52

You may need to fill the tank with petrol, and it should be OK!
Seriously you can check your engine oil level and oil pressure if you are not sure, but other than that it will be OK unless you are very unlucky.
I hope you enjoy the ride! :D

PS: Obviously don't be alarmed if the coolant temperature climbs to the third mark in traffic before the fans kick in, then they should do a good job cooling the engine until the gauge is on the first mark again (that may be obvious to you but I thought I had to tell you just in case)
Last edited by Giniw on Fri 22.06.2018, 22:20, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby alan e » Fri 22.06.2018, 22:13

And a satnav in London the car will be fine :burnout:
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Simon_P » Sat 23.06.2018, 03:23

Check tyre pressure. Also check that the thermostat is operating correctly and that the fans cycle correctly. Check that the vent control is working.

Take sunscreen, water and a hat.

Above all remember that it is a surveillance state. Junctions have manned cameras and even pausing in a box junction will get you a fine, a wheel over the line.... fine. Don't forget to pay the congestion tax.

Remember also that cyclists are rude, self-righteous and have cameras so that they can post on YouTube.

It is a foreign city these days, if out late, don't stop, use your satnav, and take your stab vest.

Note
I have paused with 2 wheels in a box junction.
I have taken a roadwork diversion at night - thank god for satnav.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby tb10 » Sat 23.06.2018, 07:21

Simon_P wrote:Don't forget to pay the congestion tax.


No need on Saturday’s or Sunday’s::

https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/congestion-charge

:burnout:

However, in addition to the Congestion Charge, you may find your car is ALSO subject to an additional charge of £10.00 or day (Mon - Fri) virtue of the “T-Charge”:

https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/emissi ... ge-checker

Regards

John
Last edited by tb10 on Sat 23.06.2018, 11:44, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Rambo » Sat 23.06.2018, 09:32

Having been down in London last week and seen the traffic and congestion in London, personally, I wouldn't bother. And, coming from the West, you will undoubtedly also get hassles and frustrations on the M4 and M25 :cry:

For your first long trip, I'd head up to Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, mid Wales (Brecon, Elan valley etc then back home. A much nicer journey and some lovely cross country roads. Much more fun than sitting in a queue going nowhere

But, wherever you choose to go, the pre flight checks given by others is sound advice

Have a good :burnout:

PS I would also say take your AA/RAC or other recovery card. You may never, ever need it but it's there just in case
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby elaverick » Mon 25.06.2018, 07:51

Good advice everyone thank you. I'm happy to report that she made it down there and back without so much as a stutter... even the highlights popped first time (which has confused me no end... but I'm happy about it). The only point where the temperature gauge rose over the first mark was sat in the queue for a McDonald's drive through before setting off :)

@Rambo: I'd usually consider "avoid London" as great advice, but sadly the journey was dictated by the destination rather than just being a fun weekend jaunt. In the end we chose a back route that took via Gloucester anyway, so we got some decent scenery for the outbound trip.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Rambo » Mon 25.06.2018, 20:39

Glad everything went according to plan and you also managed some x country stuff

I regularly travel long distance trips in mine. Typically 4 big trips of c800 miles at a time. Never had any problems. Yet.

Touchwood :smt017
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Giniw » Mon 25.06.2018, 21:59

:-)
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Saltire » Mon 25.06.2018, 22:44

Rambo wrote:Glad everything went according to plan and you also managed some x country stuff

I regularly travel long distance trips in mine. Typically 4 big trips of c800 miles at a time. Never had any problems. Yet.

Touchwood :smt017


It’s interesting, isn’t it, how one often finds a concern among classic car aficionados about whether their chosen chariot will reliably complete a journey of reasonable length. And yet we don’t even give it a thought in our modern, air-conditioned repmobiles. But speaking from my own experience, it’s often the other way around. Back in 1975, I took a Morris Minor Traveller from South London around the north coast of Scotland and back with a bunch of university friends. Four up, with luggage. 100,000 miles came up as we were passing Loch Eriboll, and we never gave breakdowns a thought. I’ve had far more problems with new or nearly-new cars than I ever have with classics - like the Boxster RS60 which stranded me on the side of the M4 for three hours, and the TVR Chimaera which spontaneously combusted while on the way to the shops (fortunately, it was a split oil line, and in no way terminal.)

My best trip in the Elan was 350 miles in a day for a business meeting in Carmarthen. Motorway speeds most of the way, in a driving rainstorm with the wipers on full belt, and it never missed a beat. And no, I didn’t get wet, thanks to the Seal Wrangler :bowdown:

Old cars are good cars, provided you keep them well maintained and use them regularly.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Rambo » Mon 25.06.2018, 23:02

My longest distance in a single day was just shy of 450 miles from my home to the Goodwood Revival. No problems there or back. But when I drove from Midhurst to Goodwood on the Saturday visibility was poor and I ended up leaving my lights on. At the end of the day, nothing :( Fortunately I was given a jump start by a TVR Chimaera owner. We both had a laugh at the irony of a Lotus being rescued by TVR
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Giniw » Mon 25.06.2018, 23:29

Rambo wrote:We both had a laugh at the irony of a Lotus being rescued by TVR
lol yes I just laughed out loud actually.
How are the TVR (un)reliable? Is it really that bad?

As for the 90s cars, they actually are(were) modern car, it's quite normal to do a few hundreds of miles in it without any problems as long as they are properly maintained :D
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Saltire » Tue 26.06.2018, 07:49

Actually, my Chimaera was pretty good. But you have to remember it’s quite a crude design (basically a huge engine bolted a steel ladder). And (to some extent like the Elan) a lot of the bits were ‘borrowed’ from other marques. Mine had the Rover (nee Buick) engine, for example, and some back street suspension bushes which lasted about 8,000 miles :shock:

Huge fun, though, both in the driving sense and also in seeing whether your passenger could pass the intelligence test of finding the exterior door handle to open the door (it’s a small black button on the bottom of the mirror housing, which operates a solenoid in the door lock :banghead: )
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Rambo » Tue 26.06.2018, 08:50

The older S and wedge shaped TVR's had some reliability issues but I'd have no hesitation in having a V8 Chimaera or Griffith in my garage

PS like our cars these also have problems with the outriggers and I see quite a few adverts saying "outriggers replaced"

PPS I was at our local car club BBQ on Sat. and when the passenger got in the door it opened as if by magic. I had to ask the question :oops: :oops: Far more clever than our "hidden" one. Trevor 1 - Peter 0
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Giniw » Tue 26.06.2018, 12:59

Thanks, that is interesting to know.
As for the magic button I already knew the trick. And if I am not wrong it's just as strange when you are inside and want to open the door, too. A rotary button \o/
Actually I discovered the TVR cars with my Playstation on Gran Turismo 1: the Cerbera LM edition was my favourite car! :lol:
It's a bit unclear to me whether most exist in a official LHD configuration, and I am still a bit unsure about the reliability issues (a bit less unsure thanks to you).
But I do like those cars very much!
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby lotusflasherman » Tue 26.06.2018, 13:51

Interesting comments above .. but getting back to Elans ...original concern was about a trip from Bristol to London which Google maps tells me is about 120 miles.

Since January my 'Monday commute' to Slough is 130 miles, returning on Thursdays having usually done about 300 business miles in a week. Occasionally pull the dipstick to confirm no oil required and glance at coolant level but it's only for 'peace of mind'.

First SE was a '91 Collapso that I took to south of France for the '96 Monaco GP. Having just finished 3 night shifts, I got up late afternoon, threw a holdall in the boot and drove 130 miles to Dover for the ferry. Calais to Monaco was 770 miles done as a single blast apart from (frequent) fuel stops. Driving overnight I was virtually the only vehicle on the road, clear sky, big moon, cold damp air, Best of the Eagles CD playing and hood down. Péage signs said '130' so that's what I cruised at .. :lol: (Not my fault they didn't say 'kph') Also found it uses less fuel with headlights down. Cruised into Monaco as the sun came up. France seemed quite small on that trip.
(The GP was a joke with failures and crashes everywhere and only 3 cars running at the finish.) Then 250 miles from Monaco to Cap d'Agde for a few days and then 700 miles to Calais and 130 from Dover to home. So almost 1900 miles on that trip. A nice 'long weekend' away.

I then used that SE on business in the midlands and doing around 600 a week. It went a long way past 100,000 miles and only items needed except service items were one set of gear-change cables and numerous sets of discs, pads and tyres.

Even though oldest are approaching 30 years old, properly maintained and used regularly, I can't see a problem with long journeys in them.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby dapinky » Tue 26.06.2018, 15:26

Oil level, water level, brake fluid level and tire pressures are done before every trip from home (not just on the elan - it's just the 'right' thing to do for any car)....

Modern cars will tell you if you need engine oil, washer fluid, brake fluid etc - but I still check them (posh ones even tell you if your tyre is flat!).

Hardly ever need oil, water or air.... but I still check them (I also carry an RAC card and a toolkit + spare parts).... never needed the RAC for the Elan, only the "reliable" VW..... and I do similar mileages in both.
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby daveiow » Tue 26.06.2018, 16:42

My “regular” longest trip is the Ypres Lotus Day event, I usually cover about 700 miles by the time I get home in 4days of motorway cruising (80mph ish) fairly quick back roads on the event itself and last year an excursion to Mons 1 1/2 hours at about 90mph in each direction :D hasn’t missed a beat yet :D
At one point I found myself behind a good friend in his supercharged Exige at a set of traffic lights on a deserted,flat 3 lane A road, obviously he went for it and I thought I was history :( in true “American Graffiti style” Suprisingly he didn’t actually get away that far, I held the Elan in ever gear and I’ve no idea what speed we were doing but got into 4th and had to start braking for the next set of lights.
Later in the day I casually asked him if “that was it” and to his credit he said yes he was flat out and by the way what the hell is in the front of those old things :lol:
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Rambo » Tue 26.06.2018, 21:57

Me too Dave

I was going to a Donington event one year when an orange Exige came into my rear mirror very quickly. Not wishing to hold him up up I put my foot down for the next 100 miles of fast, twisty roads. When I eventually pulled into a filling station the owner pulled up behind me and said "what the f...ck are you driving, I'm struggling to keep up"

:burnout:
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Re: Pre-Flight checks

Postby Giniw » Tue 26.06.2018, 23:08

lol, really? That's quite funny =) (with an Everest chip?)

Here in France there are so much speed cameras and roundabouts and sleeping policemen (sometimes awake too) that it's becoming more boring to drive each year ... And in a couple of days it will be limited to 80kph on secondary roads, along with mobile cameras in regular cars driven all day... :roll:
Now when I overtake I really hesitate to accelerate and almost look more into my rear mirror to see if there is a hidden camera under the front licence plate than in front of me :/
A shame, really.

PS: I am not even speaking of driving super fast, just to overtake a slightly slow vehicle, nothing more...
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