Lotus Elan

S4 Elan in California

PostPost by: summerinmaine » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:29 am

bluesbrother30 wrote:Great thread, thanks for all of the info guys.....my car is, at least the vin plate id's it as, 45/5706. I was told by a friend of the PO that he had personally cut the top off the car. When I got the car, and sad it was, it had the alum strip attached to the top of the windshield frame. At the time. 10 years ago and my first Lotus, I did not know that the top tucked in under the strip to secure it in place. One question I have is the shape of the top edge of the windshield frame and the angle that the alum strip is. Mine has sort of a "concave" shape to it, in other words, the strip does not lay flush to the frame. If anyone can post a pic of the shape that is under the alum strip that would save me a trip up to Dave Beans.

Mike Summers



June 1966 must have been an interesting time at the factory. They were finishing up production of the Type 26 (my S2 26/5693 was built that month I believe), the Type 36 was well into production, and they introduced the Type 45. I wouldn't be surprised if a few VIN plates got scrambled in their type designations.

It would be interesting to see the prefixes on the run of chassis numbers between ~5600 and 5750, and see how mixed they were in types of cars.
Jim

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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:44 pm

There is some info on Coupe production at
elan-f14/elan-production-numbers-t14219-30.html
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"Looking at the limited real world data, the difference between Rohan's Coupe body number and Adam's early body number gives a difference of 1586 bodies over a 4 year period and 2106 bodies over 5 years. The total number of Elans (difference in rows of the excel sheet) is 4695 over the same 5 year period, this includes some number of type 26 Elans from 4970 to 5810, all of the S3's and a bit of the S4 production before the change in January 1970 to the new Lotus numbering system. This is a larger percentage than I would have guessed at 45% (2106/4695). More Early Coupe numbers are welcome, any other body numbers with the 36/xxxx format?


row 6672 unit 9686 engine G21065 invoice 18-Dec-69 body # 3116 type coupe

row 6556 unit 9568 engine K18425 invoice 21-Oct-69 body # 3056 type coupe

row 5563 unit 8555 engine D17310 invoice 19-Dec-68 body #2696 type coupe

row 4513 unit 7502 engine LP8978 invoice 20-Sep-67 body # 2175 type coupe

row 3288 unit 6278 engine LP7126 invoice 11-Oct-66 body # 1634 type coupe

row 2900 unit 5890 engine LP6128 invoice 17-Aug-66 body # 1236 type coupe

row 2839 unit 5829 engine LP6085 invoice 30-Jun-66 body # 1515 type coupe

row 2527 unit 5520 engine LP5394 invoice 28-Mar-66 Body # 1289 type coupe

row 1977 unit 4970 engine LP4296 Invoice 14-Oct-65 Body # 1010 type coupe



9 body numbers spread over from the start of production (September 1965) until Jan, 1970 is but a small sample to make any realistic guesses. The list of unit numbers below is what folks on the Internet have said they own, owned, or have been seen (ebay, craigs list, etc). Some of them are from Jeff?s original registry that was around for a while and others are from Jim Boones registry. If you look at the body numbers they look a little sparse. Can anyone who owners any of the Coupes listed below add a bit more in terms of body numbers for this list above?

Unit# Engine Invoice - -Type Body#
5147 LP4651 30-Nov-65 36
5101 LP4655 19-Nov-65 36
5181 LP471602-Dec-65 36
5178 LP4732 15-Dec-65 36
5201 LP4743 31-Dec-65 36
5318 LP4971 11-Jan-66 36
5287 LP5043 11-Jan-66 36
5459 LP5066 21-Feb-66 36
5526 LP5260 25-Apr-66 36
5358 LP5270 15-Feb-66 36
5597 LP5271 25-Apr-66 36
5531 LP5310 13-Jun-66 36
5599 LP5385 23-Apr-66 36
5520 LP5394 28-Mar-66 36 1289
5607 LP5481 6-Jul-66 36
5598 LP5490 28-Mar-66 36
5507 LP5548 06-May-66 36
5572 LP5554 28-Mar-66 36
5522 LP5608 31-Mar-66 36
5624 LP5629 6-Jul-66 36
5704 LP5737 26-May-66 36
5661 LP5865 24-May-66 36
5683 LP5910 26-Apr-66 36
5778 LP5952 7-Jun-66 36
5755 LP5956 17-May-66 36
5785 LP5971 30-Jun-66 36
5784 LP5972 21-Jul-66 36
5790 LP5980 31-Aug-66 36
5776 LP6062 19-May-66 36
5783 LP6069 2-Jun-66 36
6453 LP7178 18-Nov-67 36
7214 LP8177 14-Nov-67 36
7675 LP10198 16-Feb-67
7679 LP10133 17-May-68
8752 L18492 19-Feb-69


3387 development coupe
4510 first Coupe
5781 elan.net info"
---------------------------------
I made a wild ass guess with the above information. my sampling rate is very small. Some of that info is probably correct, maybe more, even if I find hard to believe. There are several things that may be true but I can't prove.

1) bourne body shells for the S1 started at 0001 and went to as high as 0438 range ( I have a small sampling so it could go higher, and they may not have used all of them as there were rejects)
2) Lotus built body shells commenced at 3000 starting in early January 1964 on the S1's
3) Coupe body shells started at 1000 (this is my best guess). Ross and Robinshaw state that the Coupe was available in September of 1965 and one of the elan.net members has
Unit 4970 Engine LP4296 Invoice 14-Oct-65 Body # 1010 type coupe
so that is where the guess comes from. My guess is 36/4510 was the first built and was "in production" for quite some time while the specs were figured out.

4) In the old numbering system before it changed in 1970 to the new complicated numbering system the highest body numbers I have are
9185 body number 7922
9686 body number 3116
the coupe below is mine and is from the new numbering system.
7004090078E body number 3303

when you look at the pre 1970 Elan production,
Bourne production 3xx
Lotus built 9185 - 3000 = 6185 Roadsters and DHC's
Lotus built Coupes 3116 - 1000 = 2116
if you do the math, you get an approximate 25 percent Coupe or 1 in 4 of all Elan's built up till 1970
Seeing that there were no Coupe's up till September of 1965 from that point on the ratio of Coupes was much higher, like 30% to 35%. With that many Coupes being built I really can?t see the value of a mold that would do either a type 36 or a type 45. I wasn't there and I don't know but the folks that I know that mold fiberglass parts do not like to do a partial lay-up in a mold. The clean up of resin and chopped strand mat that didn't end up on the part and has to be cleaned up after removing the partial is a pain in the ass. For one off they will do it but for production there would be a dedicated mold. There may have been parts of the mold that were substituted to convert a DHC mold to a FHC mold but with the numbers that Lotus were producing that just doesn't make a lot of sense to me. In the first half of 1966 lotus produced roughly 600 Elans of both types (unit numbers 5200 to 5800) so that?s about 100 a month or 25 a week. So some more of my wild ass speculation is that there were 5 complete sets of molds, 3 sets for the DHC and 2 Sets for the Fixed Head Coupe. With a production rate of one a day for each of the body shell molds.
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PostPost by: summerinmaine » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:16 pm

As I mentioned in another thread, I have corresponded with the former owner of this Elan:

Image


and he stated that it was a Type 26, as appeared clear to me. Then I looked more closely at the boot, and thought "that's weird." I know that some Type 36 and 45s probably received left-over parts from Type 26 production, but this would be a Type 45 with Type 26 bits, no window frames and marked as a Type 26 on the VIN plate. Or a Type 26 with . . . this is too confusing. :lol:
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PostPost by: summerinmaine » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:18 pm

Gary,

Your posts are always a gold mine of information. Thank You!
Jim

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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Mon Nov 22, 2010 2:55 pm

summerinmaine wrote:As I mentioned in another thread, I have corresponded with the former owner of this Elan:

Image


and he stated that it was a Type 26, as appeared clear to me. Then I looked more closely at the boot, and thought "that's weird." I know that some Type 36 and 45s probably received left-over parts from Type 26 production, but this would be a Type 45 with Type 26 bits, no window frames and marked as a Type 26 on the VIN plate. Or a Type 26 with . . . this is too confusing. :lol:


Morgan's ex Elan (45/6112) is an S3 with the window frames removed.

elan-archive-f16/frameless-door-latch-t4240.html

I first saw the Elan when Morgan was living in Massachusetts?s back in July 15th of 2000 when he brought it to British car day in Brookline.
elan-archive-f16/first-drive-t3385.html

It was very nicely done and the doors were capped flat so you could rest your arm on them when you were leisurely touring about. If you only drive in the nice weather then this is a nice feature to have.
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PostPost by: summerinmaine » Sun Dec 05, 2010 7:37 pm

garyeanderson wrote:
summerinmaine wrote:As I mentioned in another thread, I have corresponded with the former owner of this Elan:

Image


and he stated that it was a Type 26, as appeared clear to me. Then I looked more closely at the boot, and thought "that's weird." I know that some Type 36 and 45s probably received left-over parts from Type 26 production, but this would be a Type 45 with Type 26 bits, no window frames and marked as a Type 26 on the VIN plate. Or a Type 26 with . . . this is too confusing. :lol:


Morgan's ex Elan (45/6112) is an S3 with the window frames removed.

elan-archive-f16/frameless-door-latch-t4240.html

I first saw the Elan when Morgan was living in Massachusetts?s back in July 15th of 2000 when he brought it to British car day in Brookline.
elan-archive-f16/first-drive-t3385.html

It was very nicely done and the doors were capped flat so you could rest your arm on them when you were leisurely touring about. If you only drive in the nice weather then this is a nice feature to have.


Thanks again Gary.

I returned from a few weeks in Baja, and am just now catching up.
Jim

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PostPost by: HolmDenmark » Sun Dec 05, 2010 10:15 pm

Hi Gary,
My type 36 has the following data:
Unit #: 36/5042
Engine: LP4342
Body #: 1073
Invoice date: Nov 1965 (acc. to Lotus archivar)
Christian - 1965 Elan S3 FHC (being restored)
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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Sun Dec 05, 2010 10:47 pm

Hi Christian

Thanks for the info, thats two more for the picture to form something a bit more useful. So we now have 14 Coupes with a clear idea of how/when they were built. Does anyone have or care to offer additional data.

Gary

row 6672 unit 9686 engine G21065 invoice 18-Dec-69 body # 3116 type 36

row 6556 unit 9568 engine K18425 invoice 21-Oct-69 body # 3056 type 36

row 5563 unit 8555 engine D17310 invoice 19-Dec-68 body #2696 type 36

row 4513 unit 7502 engine LP8978 invoice 20-Sep-67 body # 2175 type 36

row 4307 unit 7297 engine LP8751 invoice 25-Sep-67 body # 2697 type 36

row 3288 unit 6278 engine LP7126 invoice 11-Oct-66 body # 1634 type 36

row 2900 unit 5890 engine LP6128 invoice 17-Aug-66 body # 1236 type 36

row 2839 unit 5829 engine LP6085 invoice 30-Jun-66 body # 1515 type 36

row 2707 unit 5706 engine LP5863 invoice 17-May-66 body # 1408 type 36

row 2608 unit 5607 engine LP5481 invoice 6-Jul-66 Body # 1334 type 36

row 2599 unit 5598 engine LP5490 invoice 28-Mar-66 Body # 1340 type 36

row 2527 unit 5520 engine LP5394 invoice 28-Mar-66 Body # 1289 type 36

row 2040 unit 5042 engine LP4342 Invoice 4-Nov-65 Body # 1073 type 36

row 1977 unit 4970 engine LP4296 Invoice 14-Oct-65 Body # 1010 type 36
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