Lotus Elan

Best place to get a dash for S4?

PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Mon Aug 03, 2020 6:09 pm

As my S4 is apart and the dash is out, I thought it should be replaced. A quick call to Paul Matty this morning and they had a few in stock, so I took a trip to get one along with a load of other bits.

It's the wrong dash for the S4 (with the extra hole in the corner for the bonnet pull for the Sprint) and the lettering was completely wrong with very spindly characters.

Can anyone recommend where I can buy a correct replacement? I can't look at a beautiful dashboard with spindly writing and a hole where there shouldn't be one! I have searched the forum but supply has changed in the past couple of years for sure!

Here's my original dash for reference.

Thanks...Mark Kempson
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PostPost by: nmauduit » Mon Aug 03, 2020 6:20 pm

from here (...) the wood underneath does not look too bad : any chance the dash could be taken back to it and re varnished ?
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PostPost by: oldelanman » Mon Aug 03, 2020 6:26 pm

If you do decide to go for restoration you might consider Chapman and Cliff. No personal experience but a friend has had his S3 dash re-veneered by them and is pleased with the results.
http://www.chapmanandcliff.co.uk/index.htm
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PostPost by: Mazzini » Mon Aug 03, 2020 6:55 pm

Nick Martin <[email protected]> is superb, no association just a very happy customer.
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Mon Aug 03, 2020 8:01 pm

Seconding for a Nick Martin, though I have had past success revarnishing a dash. I thought it was absolutely knackered until I stripped and the cracking was all in the varnish. The dash underneath was perfect. Very satisfying if you can salvage it yourself.
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Mon Aug 03, 2020 9:17 pm

Thanks guys. I'm not sure if the wood is cracked or it's just the varnish. To be honest I hadn't thought of getting it re-finished, but that is probably the best solution and it retains the original dash.

I had my Cortina 2 door 1600E dash and door caps re-veneered and varnished by Chapman and Cliff, and they are absolutely stunning. I'll call them to see if they do the letters in the right font as well.

Not heard of Nick Martin Rob and Steve...does he make new boards or like Chapman and Cliff rejuvenate the existing one? And do they do the letters as well?

Thanks for the suggestions...I'll make some calls.Does anyone know if the correct font lettering is available anywhere if these guys don't so it?

Having seen what Chapman and Cliff can do, I don't think my stripping and varnishing skills are quite up to their standards, and if one thing on a car has to be as good as it can bee, it has to be the thing you look at all the time! This is what they did for my 1600E, with new veneer chosen to give that little swirl around the glove box. Very neat!
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Mon Aug 03, 2020 11:22 pm

Mark,

Nick is brilliant though you might have to wait a bit. My Sprint had a new dash though I’m sure he’d refurb too.


0E8EA0AE-43F0-4C41-BC79-8FE5AFCC3CB8.jpeg and
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Tue Aug 04, 2020 5:51 am

Thanks Steve. That looks like the right script / font as well. Do you know if he used letraset or the vinyl lettering? The thck stuff has to sit on top of the varnish, whist the letraset can go underneath. I know the original letraset sat on top, but it was thin enough that you couldn't really tell. If it sits on top it doesn't even last 50 years!
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PostPost by: RichardHawkins » Tue Aug 04, 2020 6:11 pm

Mark,

I bought a new dash and regretted the purchase. My old dash was like yours, and had an additional hole for a clock, but it fitted the car and all the instrument and switch holes were the correct size. The new dash, supplied by Sue Miller and made by city polishers, looks lovely, but took ages to fit. I now think repair and re-polish would have been better.

Hope this helps,

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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Tue Aug 04, 2020 6:55 pm

Mark,

I can’t recall whether Nick supplied the lettering - give him a ring? At one time you could buy the decal set off the usual suspects. I recall being warned not to put them under varnish as they go yellow
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Tue Aug 04, 2020 9:02 pm

RichardHawkins wrote:Mark,

I bought a new dash and regretted the purchase. My old dash was like yours, and had an additional hole for a clock, but it fitted the car and all the instrument and switch holes were the correct size. The new dash, supplied by Sue Miller and made by city polishers, looks lovely, but took ages to fit. I now think repair and re-polish would have been better.

Hope this helps,

Richard Hawkins

Thanks Richard. At least I know the original fits and everything fits on it. A very good point. I spoke with Sue this morning and she has a different supplier now. The product is very good but the supply a little patchy.

I dropped Nick an email this morning Steve but nothing back yet. I did have a set of letraset from a chap on here about 10 years back, but they are the wrong size for the S4 being the small ones for the Plus 2.

It could always go back on with restored wood and no writing I suppose...like an S3, 2 and 1 ! Or red dymo labels...that would look nice!

Mark
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Tue Aug 04, 2020 10:34 pm

Steve

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PostPost by: snowyelan » Tue Aug 04, 2020 10:56 pm

Searanch had some letrasets made a while back for the plus2.....

viewtopic.php?f=33&t=40557&p=306847#p306847

I had some made for the elan but I don't recall a size difference? I have some leftover. Not sure if I have a complete set left though.
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Wed Aug 05, 2020 7:54 am

Hi Steve. They look good and the font looks right as well. There are a couple of variations, but a lot better than Dymo labels! Thanks for hunting those out.

Scott, I think I got mine from a chap in Ireland who had some sets made up. They are definitely the wrong size for the Elan, but I'm not sure about the Plus 2. Unless they've shrunk since being tucked away!
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