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2016 Racing Season Finale

The climax of the 2016 Lotus Cup racing season takes place this weekend on the Snetterton 300 circuit.

With five sessions of Lotus car on the track, supported by Mini and Formula 3 series too, it promises to be a full day of Lotus racing action as the Lotus Cup and Elise Trophy championships reach their climax.

Hangar 111 Racing will again be in paddock, supporting our drivers Mark Richardson (Car 26) in Elise Trophy, and James Little (Car 34) in both Lotus Cup and Elise Trophy.

As the sun sets on another great year of racing, why not come along for a final autumn blast.  We’re based in the pit garages all day on Saturday, so come and find us and say hello!

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Hygroscopic

It is recommended that your brake fluid is renewed every 2 years.  This is because brake fluid is hygroscopic, which means it is able to absorb water molecules from its surrounding atmosphere.  Failure to refresh the fluid will result in a loss of effectiveness of the braking system, as the properties of the fluid are changed by the water content, particularly the boiling point.

Taken to an extreme, not flushing the system with some regularity, can result in a mayonnaise-like accumulation, like that seen here.

Needless to say, the brakes on this car were hugely improved by cleaning the reservoir and thoroughly flushing the system with new fluid.

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EALC Workshop Visit

At the weekend, we were visited by members of the local East Anglian Lotus Club. Twelve Lotus, and a couple of interesting other cars, made their way in convoy in less than ideal conditions, but a warm welcome awaited at Hangar 111.

A range of vehicles were on display at the workshop, ranging from a very tidy early S1 Elise, to the latest Evora 400, via S2 Exige and Elise, and an LF1.  The championship-winning Hangar 111 Racing Elise Cup R was also present, demonstrating our state-of-the-art alignment rig in action.

Some of our current parts catalogue were available for hands-on perusal, which showed some of our developed upgrade parts, such as the Signature exhaust range, JRZ suspension, and others.  Also a number of factory and everyday parts, including the ever popular Elemental shower caps and Stormforce car covers.

A steady supply of tea and coffee, and a buffet lunch kept attendees topped up, whilst there was plenty of time to meet and chat with the H111 team about all things Lotus.

Our guests were also given an introduction to our new rolling road dyno booth, with a show-and-tell from Greg giving the low down on how the dyno works, and how it enhances our diagnostics and tuning services.

 

 

 

It was great to welcome club members to the workshop, we hope they enjoyed their visit, and our thanks to EALC for a good turnout of cars, and their enthusiastic drivers and passengers.

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Performance Driver Training at Millbrook

The first of our performance driver training days took place last week at Millbrook. Despite the weather taking a turn from the recent sunshine, a warm welcome was assured by Colin, Jo, and Paul at CAT Driver Training.

The Millbrook experience is unique, and starts as you pass through security and are escorted via part of the Alpine test track to CATs base hidden away in the middle of one of the test loops. CATs range of test and race cars welcome you and your Lotus, as well as Jo’s seemingly never-ending supply of tea and coffee!

The day starts with a short interactive briefing from Colin, to learn a little about everyone in the group, their experiences and ambitions for the day.  Colin then introduces the schedule for the day before getting straight down to business with learning about braking. Out onto the mile straight, which is what it says, and allows you to ensure your braking techniques are tuned, before moving onto to the going faster lessons.

The activities continue with a visit to the high-speed bowl, the opportunity to learn more about steering, and the handling circuit, to further add understand of weight transfer and grip.  A short respite for lunch, is followed with some theory on cornering and trail braking from Colin. Then it is out onto the alpine loop circuits, to put it all into practice with the added challenge of sharp gradients and heavily cambered, changing road surfaces.  After some grip limit tests, it is time to put it all together and have a little fun with the gymkhana, a short course against the clock, and your fellow attendees.

The day is finished off with a prize for the best performance in the gymkhana, and Colin and Pauls driver of the day accolade.

A safe, fun, and educational day was had by all, even the Hangar 111 support team.  But don’t just take our word for it, here’s some comments from the attendees…

“What a fantastic day, in superb facilities, with instructors who provided a structured and personalised approach.”

“I didn’t imagine it was possible for me to learn so much in one day, with the added bonus of Hangar 111 Lotus advice on tap all day.”

“Driving the Alpine Loop was one of the best experiences of my life!  I could happily drive round that circuit all day long…”

We hope to be able to run some more dates next year, starting in the spring – keep your eyes on our newsletters for dates and availability.

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Gearbox Rebuilds

Here at Hangar 111 we are fully-equipped to rebuild all of the gearboxes found in the modern Lotus cars.

From the PG1 in the Rover K-series powered cars, through the C64 in Toyota 2ZZ, to the EA60 and EC60 in the current production models.  We have the specialist tools and experience of rebuilding many gearboxes both as standard, as well with uprated components such as stronger bearings, final drives, limited slip diffs, etc (all available in our online store!).

So if your ‘box is sounding tired, or you are looking to upgrade, why not give us a call – you may be surprised the improvement it will make to your driving experience!

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Advisory/Warning: Motorsport Oil Coolers

This affects Elise S1 / Exige S1 / 340R and Rover K-Series models fitted with original equipment front-mounted oil cooler.

We have been carrying out numorous factory oil cooler recalls on Toyota 2ZZ-engined cars, where oil hoses are separating from the unions that are fitted to the oil coolers and sandwich plates.

More recently we have found the same situation on a much earlier Elise Sport 160 which features similar pressure-fitted swaged unions.  The main difference with the earlier cars is that the oil hose itself has been perished and found to be cracking.  This could of course lead to failure of the hose, with subsequent engine damage, and/or fire, or worse still – an accident.

Due to the use of the steel fittings on an aluminium cooler, often the fittings have seized due to corrosion over time. Since OEM parts are not always available, we have an alternative higher-capacity cooler radiator which fits in the original shroud under the crashbox.

We are compiling a kit of parts to replace the original hoses, oil cooler and unions which will allow a full refresh of the oil cooling circuit for these cars.

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