Gearbox Rebuild?

This forum is specifically for engine and gearbox posts, please try to keep on topic in any thread to make things easy to find

Moderator: Board Moderators

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

After 186,000 miles I think my gearbox needs some work - it's just started jumping out of first almost every time I pull away (even if I try to hold it in), which is becoming tiresome. Well, for now I'm just using 2nd...

I'm game for having a go at a rebuild - but looking at both LotusBits and SJ Sportscars they don't list much in the way of gearbox internals as spare parts, certainly no gears.

If I do go for a rebuild, I'll need the temporary use of another gearbox to keep me on the road, then I'll swap mine back in again once it's done.

Has anyone rebuilt a gearbox? Are the bits available to do it, but the suppliers aren't listing them on the website?

If all this isn't do-able, I guess I'll just have to swap mine for another used 'box and hope it's a good 'un. LotusBits list used 'boxes @ £400 +VAT.
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

User avatar
Lotus-e-Clan
Senior Poster
Posts: 3854
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 13:25
Model: Excel SE - EWP/Waterless!
Colour: Not Blue or Green
Year: 1989
Location: Swaledale

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by Lotus-e-Clan »

Long shot on 1st gear jump...

Sometimes if the gearbox (and engine) mounts are VERY badly deteriorated, the movement during torque transfer (which is highest in first gear) is enough to upset selection. Also fresh oil works wonders if not been changed in a long while.

That said.. 186K miles is bound to impact - esp. if you've done a few track days too.
Peter K

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

Good thought, but all engine and gearbox mounts were replaced with new when I re-installed the engine after its rebuild 2 years ago. The old ones were wrecked!

Oil was topped up (a fair bit) back in October for the last service, but it's been a while since it was totally drained and replaced - worth a shot.
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

AndyC
Senior Poster
Posts: 2014
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2005 20:01
Model: SE x2 + Celebration
Colour: Gold,blue and green
Year: 1987
Location: Norwich
Contact:

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by AndyC »

I'd suspect that the gearbox internals are still available from Toyota, as far as I know it's a standard box with (one of the) standard gearing setups. If Toyota dealers cannot help, then likely a gearbox specialist nearby would have a source.

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

Got email replies from both Lotusbits and SJ. Lotusbits say they don’t do the gears, and to try Toyota directly. SJ suggest taking it apart and then contacting them to ask about what I find that I need, so some hope there.

Long shot, but I don’t suppose anyone has a spare W58 gearbox lying around that I could rent for a couple of months or so while I dig into mine, for slightly less than buying a used ‘box from LotusBits?
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

AndyC wrote:I'd suspect that the gearbox internals are still available from Toyota, as far as I know it's a standard box with (one of the) standard gearing setups. If Toyota dealers cannot help, then likely a gearbox specialist nearby would have a source.
Good idea. https://www.acegearboxes.co.uk/ are local and could be good for parts, or the whole job if I lose my way / nerve!
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

AndyC
Senior Poster
Posts: 2014
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2005 20:01
Model: SE x2 + Celebration
Colour: Gold,blue and green
Year: 1987
Location: Norwich
Contact:

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by AndyC »

I had the Esprit box done locally (2nd gear crunch is common), and got a phone call, they were apologising as they'd not been able to get a new 2nd gear baulk ring for less than £60 (new from Renault). So the whole job (transaxle not just gearbox) was something like £300 and they thought I might be upset. So, might be worth checking out how much they'd want to do the job, unless you are really keen to play.

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

Good to know Andy, worth bearing in mind!
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

richardw
Senior Poster
Posts: 1257
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2013 15:06
Model: Elite S2.2 Automatic
Colour: Essex Blue
Year: 1981

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by richardw »

You could check check the gearshift linkage bushes in case there is a lot of slack?

Regarding the oil - different car, but my in daughter's Renault Twingo she often couldn't engage gear - I changed the oil which fixed it. I was amazed!

Cheers, Richard
Image

bash
Senior Poster
Posts: 1224
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2005 15:34
Model: Se, V8
Colour: white
Year: 1986
Location: South yorks / north notts border
Contact:

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by bash »

Try this first
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=10811
lots is still available from Toyota and prices are good, but delivery can be from Japan.
I will lend you a box if you like while you get yours sorted, but I do want it back when you have finished, so usual rules apply, if you break it you've bought it, although thats unlikely cos they are a good box usually.

Bash
The bits that you can see from inside the car, ie the plasic bowl at the base of the gearstick, and the plastic bush on the end of the gearstick are easy to get to can be done without taking the box out, but, in my experience jumping out of gear isnt usually the plastic bits. But, if you do want to borrow the box Im spannering on a rally at Donington on Sunday, I could put it in the boot to half your journey. Let me know, pm me and I will pass on my telephone numbers.
You are only young once but you can be juvenile all your life !!

User avatar
Phantasm
Senior Poster
Posts: 645
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2015 21:16
Model: Excel SE
Colour: Silk Red
Year: 1992
Location: Jacksonville, FL, USA
Contact:

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by Phantasm »

Following, my girl is jumping out of 1st as well. If I hold it in gear it's fine, if I don't it's sketchy moreso when pointed downhill or on the flat. Pointed uphill it usually holds fine. Going to go after the fluid first as suggested above.
-Bill
1991-92ish Lotus Excel SE Silk Red
2009 Jeep Wrangler X Unlimited 4X4
2015.5 Volvo V60 T5
Previous: 2005 Toyota Prius, 2002 Nissan Maxima SE 6 speed, 1988 Toyota 4Runner, 1989 Toyota 4Runner, 1995 Dodge Neon, 1986 Ford Mustang

Sirclip
Senior Poster
Posts: 219
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2014 09:18
Model: Excel Celebration
Colour: Marque Lotus
Year: 1991
Location: Wiltshire

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by Sirclip »

Hi Richard, it's your lucky day - how about this :
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lotus-Excel- ... SwWIJcBo2c

bash
Senior Poster
Posts: 1224
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2005 15:34
Model: Se, V8
Colour: white
Year: 1986
Location: South yorks / north notts border
Contact:

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by bash »

You are only young once but you can be juvenile all your life !!

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

Thanks for those eBay links!

The entire Excel gearbox seems a bit overpriced at £750; LotusBits quote £400 +VAT for a used gearbox, and I can't see any reason to believe the eBay one would be any better.

The eBay rebuild kit looks well worth having, thanks Bash! Shame the postage is 40% higher than the actual cost of the kit. Still, if I can't find one closer to home (or it's much pricier) it may still be worth it. Doesn't include any gears, but I may have to replace those as I find which are damaged (maybe only 1st), rather than replacing the lot.
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

User avatar
rbgosling
Senior Poster
Posts: 999
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 22:55
Model: Lotus Excel SE
Colour: Midnight Blue
Year: 1990
Location: Northampton

Re: Gearbox Rebuild?

Post by rbgosling »

bash wrote:Try this first
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=10811
lots is still available from Toyota and prices are good, but delivery can be from Japan.
I will lend you a box if you like while you get yours sorted, but I do want it back when you have finished, so usual rules apply, if you break it you've bought it, although thats unlikely cos they are a good box usually.

Bash
The bits that you can see from inside the car, ie the plasic bowl at the base of the gearstick, and the plastic bush on the end of the gearstick are easy to get to can be done without taking the box out, but, in my experience jumping out of gear isnt usually the plastic bits. But, if you do want to borrow the box Im spannering on a rally at Donington on Sunday, I could put it in the boot to half your journey. Let me know, pm me and I will pass on my telephone numbers.
That would be fantastic Bash! Frustratingly I can't get the 'box from you this weekend, as I already have plans to visit my sister in London, but I'll be in touch.

I tried the link, and it seems very useful for some parts (particularly the automatic transmission), but when you follow the link to the gears for manual transmission you just get "Chosen part group is not applicable for current complectation." :( I don't know what a complectation is!!

Maybe it's just easiest for me to get in touch with Steven Eagel Toyota Northampton and see how helpful they can be?
"Farmer" Richard

1990 Lotus Excel SE (Lilith)
2004 Jaguar X-Type Estate

Post Reply