Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Spring Forward

Torsion springs - the root of all evil!Well, I got the Lotus back on the road all by myself! I had a look at the throttle problem a couple of weeks ago, and on closer inspection I noticed three things:

1. What I thought was the throttle cable was actually the choke cable (how embarassing!)

2. The throttle cable is, in fact, nearly new.

3. The return spring is, in fact, very, very old!

You see the little hooks on the ends of the blue spring on the right in the photo? (Photo courtesy of Pated Springs, by the way.) Those hooks hold the torsion spring in place. On my Lotus, one goes through a hole in a piece of sheet metal, which appears to be something to do with holding the carburettors in place, and the other goes through the end of the throttle cable.

After a thorough forensic examination, I deduced that a combination of the metal being very old and my over-exuberant application of the throttle resulted in the hook at the throttle cable end sheering half off, thus causing the spring to dangle helplessly beneath the carburettors! That's why the throttle stuck open with alarming effect, half way around the M25.

On the plus side, enough of the spring was left to effect a decent repair with some garden wire, so not only is it now driveable again, I'm also in less of a hurry to take it for its service (though I really should sort that out soon anyway).

The Fiat lies with Bob right now. He's had it for a week now, so knowing Bob, he's nearly done!

One other piece of news. I'm not sure if I'm proud of this or not, but Honest John featured me (about two thirds of the way down, headline "...to hold you?") in his column in the Daily Telegraph. As an example of what happens if you don't give mechanics a deadline. Oops!

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