|Europa Rear Disk Brakes Conversion|
By Nick Goldberg (on-line Europa Group List)
Fri, 14 Feb 2003
Subject: REAR DISC KIT
LOTUS EUROPA REAR DISC KIT
UPDATE: I have finally researched every last detail of the rear disc conversion. I must stress that this kit uses four piston calipers suitable for racing and street use, not floating calipers unsuited to racing. The spot calipers are for a DOT parking brake.
I have tried to include everything needed to do the conversion using first rate components.
YOU WILL NEED:
1. Remove Brake Drum
2. Remove Hub
3. Disconnect Brake Line and e-brake cable
4. Remove the four bolts that hold the backing plate to the hub/trailing arm. No need to remove shoes, wheel cylinders, springs, or adjusters from the backing plate.
5. Install new caliper bracket with same four bolts.
6. Drill Hole in trailing arm and bolt bracket to arm.
7. Replace Hub
8. Install rotor
9. Install Dynalite Caliper and pads
10. Install Spot Caliper and pads
11. Connect and adjust parking brake
12. Install 90 deg fitting onto caliper
13. Connect flex line to 90 deg fitting
14. Determine where to cut existing steel line carefully, then cut.
15. Slide line end over steel line
16. Flare end of steel line
17. Position Frame Tab and rivet in place.
18. Connect flex line to existing steel line with Frame Tab to hold everything secure.
19. Bleed Brakes
20. Go on test drive. Be careful at first until you get your proportioning valve (not included) or your balance bar adjusted to your satisfaction.
You will need a method to calibrate the amount of pressure that goes to your rear brakes in relation to your front brakes. This can be done with either a proportioning valve($45 online or at your local speed shop) or dual master cylinders with a balance bar.
The entire conversion (less proportioning valve) will probably take a half day or so.
The brackets will be unpainted, so you can paint them whatever color you want.
The TC Special has bigger diameter hub registers (this means that the collar on the hub has an extra washer tack welded on to accommodate a bigger center hole in the brake drum). You have a choice…either remove (dremel/grind/machine) the added washer (recommended), or I can have the hole in the rotor enlarged to accommodate the larger register.
o the best of my knowledge, the Lotus / Cosmic 5 ˝" alloy wheels have the tightest clearances. To accommodate this, I will be removing a minute amount of material from the outer corner of the caliper. Wilwood recommends this, so be assured that this is ok. The amount of removed material is very minimal and won't adversely affect the strength of the caliper. If you won't be using these wheels and don't want the material removed, let me know. You can always easily remove this material at any time with a file, grinder, belt sander, or the like.
I don't know much about brake pads and have included the Wilwood Polymatrix `B'. The reason I am supplying this pad is that John Zender recommends it with his front brake kit. If you would rather use another compound, let me know. You can read about the different compounds on wilwood's site www.wilwood.com . You can also see the mechanical spot caliper there. If you want to see the Forged Dynalite, go to http://www.wilwood.org/fl104.pdf
Those of you (myself included) that have the Banks Twin link rear suspension kit will need to remove about 5/8" of the outside of the Banks hub brackets, leaving the threaded tube intact that goes between the upper rear bolts. This can be done with a hack saw, sawzall, cutoff wheel, etc. Should take about five minutes per side.
PRICING: I already have a few hundred dollars into this for test rotors that didn't work, machining, shipping, etc. I also have at least a hundred hours into R&D. I have negotiated some bulk buy pricing for as many parts as I could. This allows me to sell the kits at less than it would cost if you were to buy the parts at the cheapest prices I could find on the web and get the brackets at my cost. My cost with bulk buy pricing is almost exactly $750, not including my leg work (just raw cost of parts). I figure the cost at the cheapest prices I could find on the web to be $944.