Rear End Problem

HELP!!! I was hoping someone has seen this problem and can help me in finding out it’s cause without having to go through a huge learning curve!!! A few weeks ago I ran my car hard at Watkins Glen and the next time I took it out at NHIS ( New Hampshire International Speedway), I heard a noise coming from the rear end whenever I loaded the car in a turn. It was usually to the left side but I believe it made the same noise when loaded to the right as well. It felt as thought the road got very bumpy and the car started to hop. I was running slicks after lowering my car and it was raining so I put on a set of AO38’s. I thought at first it was the tires that were rubbing that caused that hopping action but upon inspection when I had the car back in the shop I noticed an oil leak. It was gearbox oil that was thrown all over the place. I cleaned up the oil leak and made sure there was fluid in the box after draining it to make certain there were no bits and peices floating around. The oil was clean without broken peices. We then road tested the car. It was leaking from the oil seal on the imput shaft on the left side. We replaced the seal and it wasn’t leaking. I ran the car this past weekend at Lime Rock and it ran well. JUST FOR THREE LAPS!!! After I loaded the left side of the car, I felt the bump sensation again. This time I was running with my slicks. It got worse after I pulled in and tried to see if it were a loose wheel or something else. I jacked the car up at the track and there was gearbox oil all over again. Has anyone seen this problem and can you recommend what to do to repair it. What is causing the seal to blow out and more importantly, cause the bumping sensation??? HELP!!!

sounds like the tripod joint has failed

search the bbs as Uldis had this problem

Does the rear end have to come apart? Is that a common problem? Did lowering the car and putting on slicks add to the problem? Please advise …

Well, from what we have seen on this side of the pond, lowering an Exige doesn’t really help much because you will run into interference problems.
The car is as low as it can go with the std springs.
Now, if you have installed harder springs you may lower accordingly, but not by much.
Also, take into account that bump steer will change and you will have to setup all the geometry again if you do.
My car with the std springs has worn big holes in the liners. I will have to install harder springs soon (and Nitrons BTW )

Now, back to your problem. I can’t really picture it.
In my case, after a dealer changed a CV boot on a service, they took the shaft from the wrong side: the gearbox.
A CV boot seems to need changing only from the ouside, he should have dismounted the wheel one and from there accessed the boot.
If the Tripod joint (the inner one) is pulled out and installed shifted (offset that what it was) it will fail soon, as the wear patterns don’t correspond.
The failure feels like a strong vibration but only at full throttle, in my case above 60 MPH only. If you release the throttle, the vibration dissappears.

Is this what you feel? If so, you need to change the tripod joint, and AFAIK they come together with the shaft and the CV joint as a package.

If yours is different, hmmm, need a bit more explaning…

It was leaking from the oil seal on the imput shaft on the left side. We replaced the seal and it wasn’t leaking.

can you explain what you mean by input shaft ??

Would we call this the drive shaft? or half shaft ?

Yes…The half shaft. I lowered the car but am running with the Nitron suspension so it’s plenty stiff. The vibration does not go away with release of the throttle. It stays as long as the car is loaded to the left but could also be the right. Lime Rock only had one left handed turn so it was hard for me to tell.

Then it’s not the tripod joint, must be something else.
Since you have the leak in the gearbox and this happens on the turns, I would look at the clips that lock the shaft in place. Maybe it’s moving? coming out on lateral force?

You must be able to find something on close inspection.

Have you tried on SELOC ? there’s this arrogant bloke (don’t say I didn’t warn you) by the name of Simon Scuffham that knows a lot about the Elise bits. Almost everything has happened to him on his racing time.


it does sound awefully like the inner CV (tripod) is goosed… don’t you think??

Well…Once again is right!!! It was the tripod joint and it seems there is play in the gearbox as well. Looks like it’s time to rebuild with Ultra Close Ratio straight cut gears…Good excuse for that now. Still wondering if lowering the car and running with slicks caused the problem??? Any help would be appreciated…