Author Topic: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods  (Read 2074 times)

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Offline Mike Surber

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V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« on: Wednesday,March 01, 2017, 07:16:49 PM »
Greetings Lotusites or is that Europanauts? LOL Not sure if to put this here of in the "garage" section. I've had this S2 for a number of years. I had a 69 back in my college days (early 70s). For years I had dreams of what I'd do if I ever got another one. Staring with hinged/tilt nose & tail sections. Saves on the back when working on the engine & suspension. But then too I always wanted a Lola T70 or Chevron B16 loved the "style" of them. But of course could never afford such beasts. I got the chance (actually I went & knocked on his door LOL) to buy this one from a neighbor. It had been setting in his back yard for years & a branch had fallen out of a tree & smashed the windshield. Any how like so many it had suffered badly from neglect. I stared in to do the restoration but then the old urge to do modifications ala race car looks etc. I've done a lot of fiberglass work over the years some on race cars Lotus 23, Deven, Ginetta etc. I've been working on this off & on for several years & it's gone through several "incarnations". You could say I just can't make up my mind LOL. Well I've settled on a Buick 215 aluminum V8 for power. Made quite a few mods to the chassis & suspension (fully independent rear) With 15" wheels & disc brakes all around.










Offline BDA

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday,March 01, 2017, 08:15:34 PM »
 :Welcome:  Mike!


That's an interesting project you have there! I would warn you to make sure your frame can take the torque of your V8. I would also suggest that you think long and hard about rear 3/4 visibility but then now a days, with cameras, you can probably get around that pretty easily.


There are some guys here who are working on some interesting frame changes (e.g. Europa -> 47) so maybe you can get some ideas or confirmation from some of them.


Keep us up to date on your progress. We LOVE pictures!  ;D

Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday,March 01, 2017, 08:35:05 PM »
I am seriously considering doing a full tube frame. Once I get the body work done. This is not just a fly by the seat of my pants project. I have help/advise from two different very experienced race car builder/restorers. By the way I'm planning on taking molds off the nose & rear & making clean new pieces.

Offline andy harwood

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #3 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 04:47:04 AM »
Wow! And I thought my little Zetec conversion was extreme -well, for me, anyhows. You have a complex project going on!! I like everything you've done. Hope you document and take pics, many people will be interested in seeing your progress.
Andyh

Offline Clifton

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #4 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 05:30:12 AM »
I am 2 years into putting a 2GR V6 into a Europa. I know this is a ton of work to do. How long have you been at it? I will be looking forward to your updates.

Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #5 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 10:42:29 AM »
I've been at this for several years. Though it's pretty much just been setting for about the last 2 years. This time I'm going to finish it (famous last words LOL) The Buick V8 is not really as radical as it might seem. In stock trim it's only rated at about 200 horse. Mine will probably be in the 250 range. A warmed over twin cam can put out that much. But it does look really cool LOL  Here's some shots of when I was working on the rear part of the frame & suspension. What isn't clear though. Is the fact I cut the "Y" & widened the rear out to accommodate the V8. Much like I understand they did for the twin cam frame. Placed 1 1/2" tubing inside the existing frame horns & welded to it. Had the rear bearing carriers/uprights modified. Though I've been thinking of having new ones cast. The Buick/Olds/Rover v8 is very light & much smaller in outside dimensions than a small block Chevy or Ford.

















Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #6 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 10:49:34 AM »
Here's a few of the aluminum goodies I've gotten. A very heavy duty trans case & side plates. Which I'll have built into a nice strong trans by a racing company near by. The Offenhauser intake & valve covers. Although I'm now thinking on a 4 weber carb set up. Either down draft or cross over side drafts.






Offline Clifton

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #7 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 11:05:14 AM »
 Rear suspension looks very Formula Ford. What transmission are you using? What did you do for front brakes?
It's not the HP but torque that makes street cars fun. A twin cam will never come close to the torque or curve you will have.

Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #8 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 11:21:08 AM »
The suspension lay out design is pretty straight forward. Common to formula/sport/can-am type cars. Reversed lower wish bone, upper link & drag struts. The trans will be a well built VW/Hewland type.

Offline SwiftDB4

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #9 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 02:41:20 PM »
I like your fabricated rear uprights. Innovative to turn stock Europa uprights upside down and weld other brackets on to it. Saw your posts over on GT40's.com. Glad you realized GT40 style doors aren't practical on a Europa. Very interesting project.

Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #10 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 07:15:00 PM »
Well I still haven't given up on the idea of the roof cut outs like on the GT40. Just the method of hinging the doors. Still looking at the way the Lola T70 3B or Chevron B16. Haven't really explored the Lamborgini style yet.

Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #11 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 07:27:05 PM »
This week I've been working on the support frame for the radiator (all aluminum "racing" radiator)& pivot for the front section. Got it pretty well under control now I think. Have everything tacked together just have to finish all the welding. Some tidying up like closing off the ends of open tubes (I hate having open tube ends for moisture to get in) Then on to the aluminum sheet ducting out through the hood. I'm going to need to redo the outlet in the hood though. The way I'd made it before won't really work.










Offline BDA

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #12 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 08:00:15 PM »
 Very interesting! I'm curious about the upper front cross member. Is there any other purpose for it other than mounting the radiator?


I dispute your assertion that a warmed over twin cam could deliver 250 hp. That sounds more like a Formula Atlantic BDA back in the day. I recognize that my information may be out of date but I do take your point there may not be as much difference to a good twin cam as it might seem. I would say that torque is more important than hp and small motors don't generate a lot of torque.


All that being said, it looks like you have thought about these and other issues pretty thoroughly. Good luck with everything and keep those updates and pictures coming! I think yours is a great addition to some pretty radical projects we're watching here. How cool would it be to get them all together at one time! Unfortunately, they aren't even on the same continent!

Offline Mike Surber

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #13 on: Thursday,March 02, 2017, 11:37:46 PM »
 Is there any other purpose for it other than mounting the radiator?

Yes & no it's a place to anchor the radiator supports yes. But also if you notice I've cut out the front luggage compartment (will need to be re glassed) That's where the gas tank will be. I had to cut it out to fit the gas tank in that space. If I hadn't needed to cut that out. The front part of the compartment would have sufficed.The reason for the top piece (it's actually pretty tin walled & doesn't weigh all that much) & the supports. Is to secure the gas tank from forward inertia in the case of a front impact or panic stop situation. It's a 17 gal. tank , & full that's a lot of weight & forward inertia. It'll also give someplace to mount the remote reservoirs for the brakes & clutch masters & the aluminum sheet ducting for the radiator air exit.


Offline BDA

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Re: V8 in a Europa & a whole lot of mods
« Reply #14 on: Friday,March 03, 2017, 05:20:52 AM »
It just gets more and more interesting! ;D