Lotus Elan

Installing 26R wings

PostPost by: JonnyPlus2 » Wed Jul 24, 2013 8:42 pm

Hi All;
I have just acquired a set of 26R wings from Kelsport: http://www.kelsport.net/parts/product_d ... ctionID=23

I am fitting them to my Series 3 coupe (which is currently separated from it's chassis). I am wondering if anyone has done this before and can give me some advice. I am currently thinking that I might have to build a rotisserie (or at least put the body upside down on trestles), Getting that epoxy soaked glass to stick when it's upside down might be a bit of a problem.

All advice will be much appreciated. Thanks.

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PostPost by: UAB807F » Thu Jul 25, 2013 5:16 am

Hi Jon,

Well, I've never fitted the 26R wing sections but I have made repairs to one wing after an argument with a lorry many years ago. There's no reason to rotate the body, just work from the top surfaces for most of the build-up.

Make sure once the original sections are removed that you clean the underside thoroughly for at least an inch (preferably 2") on the body side of the cut. Clear all dirt away & roughen the surface slightly while you have easy access.

You will most likely have to pin the new sections in place with metal strips while the first layers are curing, if you haven't seen this there are photos in Brian Buckland's book of the type of thing needed. Wipe all surfaces immediately prior to laying up with something like acetone, it's not essential but it does ensure it's clean and you get a good bond.

Then I would lay a thin layer on the topmost surfaces and let it cure to hold everything together. Although not general practice, I prefer to use surface tissue for this stage as it is easy to manipulate and strong enough for holding things in place. Then remove the holding strips, check it's aligned how you like it and then build up with normal chopped strand matting (CSM) to section thickness from the outer surfaces.

If it still looks good, then I'd apply a couple of layers of CSM from underneath. That is messy, what I usually do is paint the joint with resin first and then, having cut the CSM into 2" strips, lie them on strips cut from plastic bags/bin liners and pre-load it with resin. Wearing disposable gloves I just press it into place, the bin liner/etc keeps most of the resin in place and makes it easier to push into place. Then remove air bubbles & ensure it's fully wetted out with the resin brush (you can use a small roller on larger flat sections). Yes, it's very messy and no doubt frowned on by the professionals, but it is practical.

After it's all hardened, get the outer surfaces something like with 60 or 80 grit paper used dry and finish off with several layers of surface tissue. Leave it for at least a couple of days, longer in winter. Sort out the profile with 80grit and if it's really essential, use body filler to take care of any pinholes.

I've probably got some pictures of working on the elan earlier this year if it's any help. It's not the same as you're doing but similar principles as described above.

Last edited by UAB807F on Thu Jul 25, 2013 8:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: trw99 » Thu Jul 25, 2013 7:38 am

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PostPost by: batfish » Thu Jul 25, 2013 8:22 am

Hi jon

Make sure the new wheel arches line up with the wheels, I made the mistake of having the arches fitted whilst the body was seperate from the chassis with the result that the arches were not centered around the wheels, was only obvious when the body was put back on the chassis,


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PostPost by: Galwaylotus » Thu Jul 25, 2013 6:02 pm

Mine had 26R rear arches when I bought it. I've had 175/80 R13 Uniroyals on the rear but they slightly foul the spring perch so my new tyres are 165/80 R13 Uniroyal RainExperts on 5.5 inch rims (Plus 2). They don't make 175/80 R13 in the RainExpert. :D
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PostPost by: gino1 » Thu Aug 01, 2013 1:22 pm

Hi Jon,
This is my experience with the same 26R wings from Pat Thomas.


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