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Rear Tie Rod ends

hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
1,340
Vermont
One of my rear tie rod ends appears to be worn out. I know of at least 2 others who have had to replace theirs. I first noticed the car darting around a little bit and began checking things on the front suspension where I suspected the problem was. But everything in front was tight and it was a few days before it occurred to me to check the rear. I'm curious if anyone else has had to replace these. Tomorrow I'll check with Tesla for replacements.
 

dhrivnak

Active Member
Jan 8, 2011
4,408
3,555
NE Tennessee
Oh yuck, that is terrible. Am I correct you have less than 50k miles on your Roadster? You also seem to be one that goes out of his way to take care of it.
 

hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
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Oh yuck, that is terrible. Am I correct you have less than 50k miles on your Roadster? You also seem to be one that goes out of his way to take care of it.

Yeah, and I just read on the Lotus Talk forums a couple of horror stories of what happens when these fail and let go. Wondering if I should be driving my car...

Does anyone know if they are the same as the Elise inner rear tie rod ends?
 

Mark77a

Member
Jul 7, 2012
455
176
Poole, Dorset, UK
I had mine changed at the last service. The play in 1 joint was pretty minimal... I could just feel it by holding the rear offside wheel at 1/4 past 9 position on flat ground and REALLY rocking hard.. I could then, just detect a tiny bit of play. But this did not effect the handling - the play would need to be MUCH more to effect the handling.

They changed both sides and checked alignment - but apart from eliminating the slight 'click' and miniscule play I don't notice any change.
 

Jaff

Active Member
Aug 15, 2010
3,135
318
Grimsby, Canada
Henry, I had to replace my tie rods around 60,000 km...the car was performing very poorly at highway speeds...it felt like the belts in the tires had shifted, or that the wheels were loose.

Going down the highway, you could feel the back end drifting out...scared the H outta me.

I drove in to my local SC in Mississauga...Eli, the service mgr test drove the car, then put it up on their hoist...by applying pressure to the top, then bottom of the rear tires, he could actually move the tire in and out (changing the camber)

It took a few days to get the new tie rods sent to Canada, and installed...after their replacement, it felt like I was driving a brand new car!!!...confidence restored in full!

I only know of one other owner who has had to replace his tie rods...he described to me the same scary feeling of the rear end drifting out...pretty sure he had over 40,000 miles on his car.
 
Last edited:

hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
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Vermont
The outers are the same as the Lotus. The inners are different-they are a heim joint where the Lotus uses a regular tie rod with a long stud. The problem with the Lotus was with the inner joint.

Thanks for letting us know the difference between the Lotus and the Roadster. Lotus had a recall of the inner joint and added a brace. I ordered the Tesla rear inner tie rod links and the long bolt that goes through the upper wishbone. I've been informed by a couple of seasoned Roadster techs that the inner toe link is made for racing and the rubber seal is not as good as a regular tie rod end like what is found on the other end of the tie rod. There's no easy way to grease it. Wiztecy greased his with a syringe. Has anyone else tried that?
 

hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
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Vermont
The parts arrived at the end of last week so I spent the weekend installing them. Just for fun I cut the old one open and it was damp and full of rust.
PartsRearInnerToeLinks.JPG


You'll notice the long sharp needle with a grease fitting on one end. No, I won't be shooting up lithium [grease], although it might help some of my joints on damp days. That's actually the only way to grease the inner toe links (pictured). You don't insert it through the rubber boot by poking a hole in it. You push it in between each rubber seal and the metal. It takes four hands and makes quite a mess.

If you do this it helps to measure your whole tie rod length before you start so you don't have to do a rear alignment when you're done. I measured the distance from each tie rod end to the rod where the jamb nut butts up against it using calipers.

Only one side was bad but my car is handling much better now. It's especially noticeable on highways or any time you're going fast.
 
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hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
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Do you know the cost of these parts. I need one asap. Do you have the specs as I am sure I could find one locally if need be
I was unable to find any part numbers in order to buy an off the shelf part. I ended up buying them from Tesla. They had the parts shipped right to my house in just a couple days.
 

Stefan T

Member
Jan 31, 2015
340
175
Sweden
If I remember right
There is some other thread with this issue
That says the part is the same as Evora or some other Lotus and the part number is there to for the part
 

Tex EV

Member
Jul 20, 2015
261
414
Houston, TX
Did mine myself recently. Was $400 for inner links with nuts and bolts. Tried aftermarket Lotus links without success. It's a different subframe back there. The Roadster link is mounted in double shear for more strength, while Lotus has it in single shear. Not interchangeable.
 

X.l.r.8

Supporting Member
Feb 18, 2018
1,429
906
Toronto/Miami
$400 ! Wow. I believe I’m going to have to suck it up but I’ll be measuring them closely and seeing if there’s nothing around that’s cheaper for next time
 

hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
1,340
Vermont
Did mine myself recently. Was $400 for inner links with nuts and bolts. Tried aftermarket Lotus links without success. It's a different subframe back there. The Roadster link is mounted in double shear for more strength, while Lotus has it in single shear. Not interchangeable.
Pretty sure I paid about half that from Tesla but that was a few years ago. You'll also need to buy some copper high-pressure grease for the bolts.
 

X.l.r.8

Supporting Member
Feb 18, 2018
1,429
906
Toronto/Miami
Copperslip I have buckets of. I use them for wheel studs. Have a new one going in the post 9am UK time, raided the parts bin after hours. I’ll see what missassauga Tesla have tomorrow morning but I’m not getting to excited.
 

X.l.r.8

Supporting Member
Feb 18, 2018
1,429
906
Toronto/Miami
$256 each from Tesla, 6 business days to get in, but they at least still have them. I find that price disgusting so I’ll see if I can get more Lotus ones at dealer price which is around £20 gbp.
 
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chadconway

2008 Roadster 1.5 - VIN 323
Jul 20, 2010
34
16
San Francisco CA
Can someone confirm, maybe @hcsharp that this is the right part numbers?
15 - SPHERICAL JOINT, TRACK CONTROL ARM - 2004808
33 - NUT, M12, LH THREAD - 2003904
19 - SCR, M10 X 1.25 X 125, HEX HD - 2004973
24 - NUT, M10 X 1.25, TORQUE LOCK NUT - 2000269
 

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hcsharp

Active Member
Jun 7, 2011
3,377
1,340
Vermont
Can someone confirm, maybe @hcsharp that this is the right part numbers?
15 - SPHERICAL JOINT, TRACK CONTROL ARM - 2004808
33 - NUT, M12, LH THREAD - 2003904
19 - SCR, M10 X 1.25 X 125, HEX HD - 2004973
24 - NUT, M10 X 1.25, TORQUE LOCK NUT - 2000269
You want 15, 19, and 24. You don't need 33 unless it's damaged but that would be unusual.
 

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