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Major upgrades recommended by JH community  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: 05-24-2011 05:32 am
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Jensen15056
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Folks,

I'm new to  the JHPS, but I've owned my Jensen roadster, 15056, since 1987 when I bought it from the original owner.  I've taken good care of it over the years, and it's still mostly original equipment.  But it's looking quite worn.  It's needs new paint, upholstery, rugs, top, tonneau, etc.  Sadly, I don't have the time or knowledge to renovate the car myself, so I'm going to take it to a place here in So Cal to do the work. 

I was wondering if you might do me the favor of giving me some recommendations about what mods and upgrades I might have done.  I already know that I want to have Dellorto carbs and Panasport 15" wheels.  I'd like to improve the suspension, and Greg has recommended to me Superpro bushings and Bilstein shocks.  Any other ideas?

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Paul K.
El Segundo, CA
 

Attachment: IMG_4591b.jpg (Downloaded 96 times)

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 Posted: 05-24-2011 05:40 am
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Jensen15056
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Additional pix of my "pride & joy."

Attachment: IMG_4593c.jpg (Downloaded 129 times)

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 Posted: 05-24-2011 05:41 am
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Jensen15056
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Another pic.

Attachment: IMG_4599b.jpg (Downloaded 110 times)

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 Posted: 05-24-2011 02:23 pm
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Jensen Healey
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Sway bars.

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 Posted: 05-24-2011 02:23 pm
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Brett Gibson JH5 20497
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Welcome to the boards, nice car.

I agree with Greg do the bushings and shocks as well as sway bars front and back you wont believe the differance in handling takes it from a bit muchy to flat and solid, the Dell's are a good choice as well they really give the car a kick, alot depends on funds but with what you mention these mod's are a good starting point.

Good Luck Brett

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 Posted: 05-24-2011 04:47 pm
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Jensen15056
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Thanks for the welcome and for the suggestions!  I'm interested in all the inputs I can get.

Regards,

Paul K.

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 Posted: 05-25-2011 07:51 pm
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JodyKerr
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So my first question is what do you want to get out of it? You want your baby to just be refreshed or are you looking for more speed/power?

 

Jody

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 Posted: 05-25-2011 08:27 pm
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jcdean
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The real question is "how deep are your pockets?"

2.2 litre stroker, up the compression, new header and exhaust, and a big brake kit for the front with a disc conversion in the rear.  These are all things I have planned.

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 Posted: 05-25-2011 08:32 pm
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JodyKerr
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Lol, yep. That truly is the real question.

 

Just heard that the prices on the 2.2L cranks went up again. I'm kicking myself for not having bought one earlier.

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 Posted: 05-26-2011 12:58 am
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chiromaster
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If you want serious power just drop in a V6...Yeah, I'm just kidding!

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 Posted: 05-26-2011 06:24 am
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Jensen15056
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Jody- Mainly refreshed, but would love more power.

JC- Deep pockets? Not real deep but I love the car, will never sell it, and I'm willing to go to some expense. One thing I'm not going to do is get a new engine.  The engine is the car's soul, right? I don't want to mess with that.  But willing to consider mods. Would a new header and exhaust system make  a big difference?  What about high-compression cylinders?

"Recommended upgrades" is hopefully an interesting discussion...

Thanks for any inputs,

Paul K.

 

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 Posted: 05-26-2011 09:06 am
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JodyKerr
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ok, let's dive in then. A good source of info is this article: http://www.jensenhealey.com/html/eng.html

This assumes you're starting with a truly stock US equipped car and you retain the 907 block.

Stage 1:

Green brake pads (Pete swears by them)

Cooling air scoop,

front and rear sway bar kit

Pertronics based distributor

magnecor 8mm plug wires

high output flamethrower coil

oversized radiator

oversized oil cooler

4 into 1 exhaust header

Stage 2: (Stage 1 +)

Dellorto carbs and intake manifold (40mm)

volvo front caliper modification

Stainless steel valves/guides/etc.

laycock j-type overdrive added to stock 4speed.

104 cam shafts

Stage 3:

lightened flywheel

107 cam shafts (or 104/107 combination for the faint of heart. :)

2.2 L crank conversion

ported/tuned head

wilwood big brake kit

rims/tires to fit brake kit.

45mm Dellortos.

Stage 4:

crank fired ignition

fuel injection

Supra 5 speed conversion

rear disk brakes (the kit does exist, I've seen it)

clean underwear.

 

Admittedly some of these items are mix/match based on preference, but when you scale it on a complexity/cost curve, this is the layout. If you don't fear engine changeouts you can swap in a Lotus Chargecool 910 engine and tear your differential apart. :)

 

Jody

 

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 Posted: 05-26-2011 11:31 pm
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jcdean
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Another thing to consider.  You can purchase a 912 High Compression engine from Lotus Bits in the UK for $2600.00.  You would have shipping on top of that cost and the frame and oilpan would have to be modified.

This gets you the stroker crank, pistons, and the late model improved heads. Add a pair of Delorto 45's and an intake manifold at the same time for around $750.00 and save some on seperate shipping.

The math makes this attractive, but I have never gotten a firm quote on shipping for something like this.  I had a body kit shipped in from Korea once and that ran me over $600. I'm betting this might be a bit more due to the weight.

http://www.lotusbits.com/esprit_engine.html

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 Posted: 05-27-2011 01:05 am
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Jensen15056
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Jody- Very nice list of stuff!  Thanks, this is something I can go over and consider.  'May have questions about some of the items. But very helpful.

JC-  The 912 is tempting, but I don't think I'm going to go there.  Thanks.

Paul K.

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 Posted: 05-28-2011 09:07 pm
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subwoofer
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I think Jody got the cams slightly mixed up, 104 are the long duration/high lift cams, while the 107 is shorter duration (really the Esprit Turbo cam) and thus "milder". In some circuits, even the 104 is considered "mild". If you want to stay with carburetors don't hesitate to go for a set of 45 Dell'Ortos, there is no comparison to the Strombergs.

If you decide to open up the engine, you really should up the compression no matter what other upgrades you perform. The later stock 907s with 9.5:1 compression is a lot more responsive, http://sjsportscars.co.uk have 11:1 pistons for the 2.0 if you wish to run wilder cams.

Poly bushings and Bilsteins are never wrong, as far as brakes go, contact Martin Shirley of the JOC in the UK for parts for fitting vented discs with modified M16 calipers under the stock wheels without massive spacers. He may need a bit of convincing to sell parts only, though.

--
Joachim

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 Posted: 05-29-2011 07:47 am
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StevenD57
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Crank-fired ignition should be moved up in importance. Doing this helps performance AND it is a safety item. No more distributor sitting under the carbs to light fuel leaks on fire.

The Megajolt ECU is $162.00 and the EDIS bits can be had for around $50 - $60 on ebay.
--
Steve

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 Posted: 05-29-2011 07:49 am
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StevenD57
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Why run crank-fired ignition?


  1. Hotter spark: The multiple coils have more time to recharge and the elimination of the additional spark gap that exists inside a regular distributor cap.

  2. More efficient optimized advance curves possible: No longer relying on simple rotating advance weights, springs and vacuum pots to determine the advance curve.

  3. Elimination of oil leak: By removing the distributor and plugging the resulting hole there is no longer a horizontal rotating distributor shaft that must be sealed.

  4. Easier timing belt replacement: Since the ignition timing is no longer dependent on the position of the gear that drives the oil pump.

  5. No distributor cap or rotor to replace: Less hassle trying to fumble around under the carbs and intake manifold.

  6. No spark source to ignite fuel leaks: Removing the distributor with sparks jumping around inside the cap from under the carburetors.


The first two benefits means the engine is more efficient, runs smoother, and starts better. Everyone I have spoken with who has done this conversion is always impressed with how much smoother the engine runs and how much better it starts. The third, fourth, and fifth points makes long term maintenance easier. The fourth is the BEST reason to do this conversion. It means the engine is SAFER! Much less chance that a stray fuel leak can cause a fire because the primary ignition source from the electrically active distributor is removed as a possible fire starter.

Last edited on 05-29-2011 07:50 am by StevenD57

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 Posted: 05-30-2011 01:27 am
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Jensen15056
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Thanks guys for the inputs, but truth be told I wouldn't know a crank-fired ignition from a rotisserie barbeque!  I'm in awe and more than a little envious of the technical knowledge of you guys.  But I'm looking for the basic upgrades that I should be sure to do. 

It looks like I'd want to include most of Jody's "Stage 2" items for sure, but should I get 45 mm Dellortos instead of the 40 mm? What difference should I expect? 

Actually, the crank-fired ignition sounds like a good idea, Steve.  What's the performance improvement I could expect?

Subwoof- I looked at your blog on your renovation.  I wish I could do for my car what you're doing for yours, but don't have the knowledge.  Why would 104 cam shafts be something I'd want? Would other mods be necessary, too, like new valves or pistons?

That's all my dumb questions for now.

Paul K.

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 Posted: 05-30-2011 03:13 pm
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JodyKerr
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Joachim,

Thanks for the correction. In my brain the number of the cam should go higher as it gets more aggressive, I always reverse the #s. And +1 on the brakes from Martin. I'd love to get my hands on a set.

Steve,

The list has nothing do do with importance. It's an upgrade path based on complexity/cost/performance. While I agree with your arguments on the crank fired ignition (which I why I'm presently putting one together) it's not a project for the uninitiated. Basically, I listed the easy bits first, and the more complex/expensive bits later.

Jody

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 Posted: 05-30-2011 03:21 pm
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JodyKerr
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It's easy enough to go with the 45's instead of the 40's and you can always jet them down if need be. With carbs, providing you're not putting too much on the car, bigger is always better.

You can fit the 104 cams easily to a stock engine. Going with the oversized stainless valves will offer additional improvement to the breathing of the engine, but does require machining the head.

We haven't documented a real "performance improvement" with the crank fired ignition yet. Steve has seen that his car starts much more easily and that he is getting better gas mileage. If you are interested in the crank fired ignition I will be putting in an order with the machinist for the custom parts soon. The bigger the order the less each separate piece will cost.

And they aren't dumb questions. :) We all started somewhere.

 

Jody

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