Guy's Lotus is Born

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Once the engine was removed, the next step is to clean the frame.

The Sport 350's frame begins its resurrection

The power washer and sand blaster are the frame cleaner's friend. Next, we.... remove the body from the '97 car of course! More kitty litter and wood would be needed. Plus a new floor jack to make up for the one that got thrown from the Mountaineer and was never found. Wait.. I think I see it.

Where's jacko? and did I mention this was my wife's car?

We must again wait for night. Question: How do you remove the body of an Esprit from its frame when every time you pick up the front it simply flips up in the air because of the body damage? Answer: Engine Hoist + Nylon straps that could break at any instant and whip around and decapitate you.

Hoist of death

My wife told me "If you hurt yourself bad, make sure you die". I think she knows about the insurance policy. 

The body has to be hoisted up far enough so that the front wheels will clear it when rolled out.

The '97 car's frame rolls out

This time the engine just cleared the 4x4 and ... it's out.

Garage is getting small

Multiple bodies off their frames serve to make what I thought was a big garage small. Oh well - Out with the BMW. The Lotus' need the space. The next step is to remove the engine from the '97 car and to move everything needed over from the '97 car's frame to the Sport 350's frame.

'97 car's engine comes out

The Sport 350 frame needed some additional cleaning up (e.g. grinding off melted aluminum from the engine fire) and the rear suspension parts from the '97 car were used because the rubber parts on the Sport 350's rear suspension and drive axles were damaged. After moving over the suspension parts, the Sport 350's rear brakes were transferred as they are definitely more manly than the '97 car's brakes (bigger and cross drilled rotors).

Sport 350 Frame restoration

A number of other parts were damaged on the Sport 350 and needed to be moved over from the '97 car including shifter and cables, brake lines, oil lines, power steering lines, clutch line, vacuum line, and everything else in front of the engine and in the rear of the tunnel. At this point the frame is ready to have the engine installed.

Sport 350 frame almost ready for engine

Sport 350 frame almost ready for engine - rear view

A few more things to do like installing the engine and transmission mounts and running a new clutch line after finding a crunch and.....

Sport 350 chassis - ready for the engine!

Guy's Lotus - In goes the Engine

It's a lot easier to put Lotus engine in its frame when the body is not sitting on it. A number of folks have asked about what the front of the engine looks like so... this is it. A bit more slow, delicate maneuvering and finally the engine is in!

Guy's Lotus - The Engine is in!

A few more ends to tie up for sure but a significant milestone has been achieved. Next... do everything the wife has been telling me to do lately that I have been putting off  "instead of working on that damn car you are obsessed with".

Now we turn to the body...

Click here to see the next chapter in the saga.