mjoc1
mjoc1 None
12/31/10 1:03 a.m.

I want to build a Lotus 7 roadster Kit I have tried finding the book. Ron Champion's book entitled, "Build Your Own Sports Car for as Little as £250" from Haynes Publishing. but with no luck. I have downloaded frame specs for a 7 +442E chassis. which is just a larger frame in width and height for larger motors and or driver. I can but really don't feel like having to build the chassis.
So my Question. Where would I buy this kit?

Mike

SkinnyG
SkinnyG Reader
12/31/10 1:39 a.m.

The kit itself comes in components. The first component is a welder. The next is steel tube. Then maybe a donor of your choice. ~You~ fabricate the kit.

There are some companies out there that make kits and/or parts for the "kit."

http://www.kineticvehicles.com is one, Jack is a great guy and very helpful.

A couple sites you should go to:

http://www.locostusa.com

http://www.diyse7ens.com (more Lotus/Caterham "clone" than Locost, but the process is the same)

http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/Locost_North_America/

There are others, but these will get you started.

More complete kits can be had here (among others, all with a higher cost):

www.bruntonauto.com

http://www.uscaterham.com/

http://www.flyinmiata.com/westfield/

I built my Locost based on Champion's book. The book isn't really needed, it's "inspirational." There are other books if you want one, even the "Haynes Roadster" book. There is enough information online that you can do it without one if that's the way you want to go.

G

JoeyM
JoeyM Dork
12/31/10 2:04 a.m.

+1 to the above. They are all good sources.

You may want to look at similar threads from the past http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/lo-cost-101-how-do-i-make-a-cool-caterham-replica/17266/page1/

or other locost related questions http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/another-question-about-my-locost/19986/page1/

http://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/lethal-locost-goes-megasquirt/8505/page1/

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess SuperDork
12/31/10 7:37 a.m.

On the yahoo list, there was a recent post of someone selling a Champion Motor Cars kit with the donor parts. He said he had >5K in it and wanted 4.5K. Want for me to find da post? That would be a Book Chassis, not a 442. Unless you are like 7' tall and want a V8 or something, I don't think you need a 442.

spritedriver28
spritedriver28 New Reader
12/31/10 8:36 a.m.

You may want to look at Kieth Tanner's book "How to build a cheap sports car" If you really don't want to build your own chassis I think the Flyin' Miata Westfield is a really well put together kit.

Wayslow
Wayslow Reader
12/31/10 8:57 a.m.

I'd be willing to mail you my copy of the book, with the understanding that you would send it back to me when you were done with it. It's been used to build 5 Locosts now so it's well worn.

Wayslow
Wayslow Reader
12/31/10 9:04 a.m.

As far as your original post goes the easiest part of building a 7 is building the frame. Unless you're willing to buy a well sorted kit you're still looking at a fair bit of fabrication for mounting points, control arms, etc.

FlightService
FlightService Reader
12/31/10 9:08 a.m.

I spoke to a local chassis builder at work, he does dirt cars primarily but I showed him the plans (McSorley 442), says he can put one together rather reasonably (frame only all the way to a roller.) Right now he is swamped but if you aren't fighting a fire I can get you a time table and price? PM me if you are interested. You may be a bit far away though.

Chebbie_SB
Chebbie_SB HalfDork
12/31/10 10:06 a.m.

If you really want the book, they are listed on Amazon.com (under Ron Champion)

Dr. Hess
Dr. Hess SuperDork
12/31/10 12:26 p.m.

Keep in mind that the book is mostly inspirational, not instructional. You're better off with McSorley's plans, whichever version.

Book: Here's how you make a nose cone. Beg/scrounge some fiberglass, then start laying it up and stop when it looks like a nosecone. See pic. (Picture of a factory made clone of a Lotus S2 nosecone.)

carguy123
carguy123 SuperDork
12/31/10 12:29 p.m.

Also the donor car components determine your suspension geometry, which determines your pick up points, which determines your frame dimensions.

See, book is just to get you in the mood. Kinda like foreplay.

modernbeat
modernbeat HalfDork
12/31/10 3:14 p.m.

Jack at Kinetic is selling my old Lotus7. It's a purpose built autocrosser with a 1000cc Honda bike motor. It's been banned in the class it was originally built for, but it's a great starting point for either a hyper street car or a more subdued autocrosser.

PS122
PS122 Reader
12/31/10 3:55 p.m.

I should probably face the fact that I'll never build a locost (and focus my attention on my fmod/solo vee project).

If anyone is interested in an excellent copy of Ron Champion's 'Build Your Own Sports Car for as Little as £250 and Race It!, 2nd Ed.', I'll let mine go for $80.00 shipped (USPS Priority Mail - US only). PM me if interested.

mblommel
mblommel Reader
12/31/10 4:19 p.m.
SkinnyG wrote: There are some companies out there that make kits and/or parts for the "kit."

In addition to the others mentioned there is MK Indy sold by Smart Sports Cars. I was considering them for a while. Looks like a nice, low priced miata-based kit.

SkinnyG
SkinnyG Reader
1/1/11 10:22 a.m.

There's also Earley Motorsports (http://home.earthlink.net/~earleymotorsports/index.html) which looks very accurate to the original.

Keith
Keith SuperDork
1/1/11 3:59 p.m.

Other than Kinetic, assume the frame manufacturer is either just about to go out of business or will in the next six months. Locost frame manufacturing is not a good way to keep the doors open Caterham and Westfield aren't Locosts, but kit car manufacturers. Big difference. Don't expect any Locost after-sale support either.

Whenever you're looking at a Locost supplier, pay very close attention to what's included. Windscreen/wipers? Seats? Suspension bushings? Mirrors? Lights? Shocks and springs?

You'll find sometimes that the "more expensive" setups are less expensive to finish because you're not having to source a bunch of extra parts. Of course, the parts list won't tell you what's missing, that's why you have to pay attention.

petegossett
petegossett SuperDork
1/1/11 6:21 p.m.

FWIW, Grahm Earl, owner of Earley Motorsports, is a local and has brought his car to some local events. It's been a few years since I talked to him, but IIRC he was importing them from New Zeland(he's from there). From what I remember it was a pretty stripped-down kit, allowing & requiring a lot of builder customization/fabrication.

He is a stand-up guy, and his kits may be right for some. Having built a locost frame before, but giving up at the suspension mounts/fabrication(and not sure I'd trust my welds with my life!) I'm pretty sure there'll be a Wedtfield kit in my future at some point!

Keith
Keith SuperDork
1/1/11 8:55 p.m.
petegossett wrote: FWIW, Grahm Earl, owner of Earley Motorsports, is a local and has brought his car to some local events. It's been a few years since I talked to him, but IIRC he was importing them from New Zeland(he's from there). From what I remember it was a pretty stripped-down kit, allowing & requiring a lot of builder customization/fabrication. He is a stand-up guy, and his kits may be right for some. Having built a locost frame before, but giving up at the suspension mounts/fabrication(and not sure I'd trust my welds with my life!) I'm pretty sure there'll be a Wedtfield kit in my future at some point!

According to his site - linked above by SkinnyG - he is no longer importing the NZ kits.

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