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Broken half shaft


Anker
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At the final Autocross yesterday I was going through a fast left hand turn when I heard a loud bang from the rear followed by loud clanking noises from the rear any time the clutch was engaged. When I got it back to the pits and jacked up I could see that the universal joint between the differential and the half shaft was ripped apart, probably by the forces generated by the wheel slipping and gripping. It has race tires, so the forces are not insignificant.

 

Now I have to figure out what parts need replacement and where I can source them from. The car is a 1987 Caterham Supersprint.

 

Take a look at the pictures and reply if you have any advice or suggestions!

 

Thanks/Anker

 

 

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From replies on the Lotus7.club site I understand that Caterham and the dealers are the only sources for the half shafts. I'm going to call them tomorrow and try to order 2 so I can replace both.

 

Thanks/Anker

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Is there a source of custom half-shafts in the US?  {calling Tbox56 or the Locost folks}   At the rate I'm going this month I'll have one fail sooner or later. 

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My driver’s side failed after that, on track.

 

Damaged:

wheel, 

brake disc,

halfshaft,

wheel bearing/CVJ,

A-frame,

Panard rod,

rear wing 

misc other parts.

 

Car became a 3 wheeler at 90 mph on a turn, sandwiched between 2 Porsches at a Putnam Park track day. I went careening off track but, thx to the very safe track design, did not hit any thing.

 

I had a spare half shaft:). But replacing the other parts was the Caterham equivalent of a scavenger hunt. The most elusive was the “uprated” rearbrake rotor. I was finally back on track 6 months later.

 

Anker: if the other end of your drive shaft is intact, keep it as a spare(assuming you replace everything). That was the part I was unable to find, for a half year.

 

Edited by Kitcat
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1 hour ago, Kitcat said:

My driver’s side failed after that, on track.

 

Damaged:

wheel, 

brake disc,

halfshaft,

wheel bearing/CVJ,

A-frame,

Panard rod,

rear wing 

misc other parts.

 

Car became a 3 wheeler at 90 mph on a turn, sandwiched between 2 Porsches at a Putnam Park track day. I went careening off track but, thx to the very safe track design, did not hit any thing.

 

I had a spare half shaft:). But replacing the other parts was the Caterham equivalent of a scavenger hunt. The most elusive was the “uprated” rearbrake rotor. I was finally back on track 6 months later.

 

Anker: if the other end of your drive shaft is intact, keep it as a spare(assuming you replace everything). That was the part I was unable to find, for a half year.

 

Ouch!

 

I am pretty sure the damage is limited to just the half shaft. But I will inspect all bushings to make sure there isn't some play there that could have been the initial problem that then progressed catastrophically.

 

On all my cars I save everything I take off that may come in handy later, but thanks for making the point!

 

Anker

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Anker:

Just in case this helps:  from the Locost forum  <http://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=21081>

 

1) Chicago Driveline Alsip IL 60803, 708 385 1900. They built my custom driveshaft when I swapped rear axle. Fast and efficient, cost $209.79
2) Just a guess but I would imagine that any good automotive driveshaft shop will have the capability to ID what you have and rebuild your half-shafts.

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Thanks wemtd!

 

That's a good option to have. I have ordered a set from Rocky Mountain Caterham, my goto dealer and should get them in to to get the car on the road next spring.

 

Anker

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