Lotus Elan

DHC to FHC

PostPost by: andyj007 » Sun Apr 04, 2021 6:21 am

Ok. morning anyone done such a thing?
My sprint is a non original sprint colour in the light french blue colour that some earlier models were painted.
also at some point along with many others it was professional converted to a DHC..

I would very much like to convert it back to a FHC, i just prefer FHC..
whats involved, is there anyone that even has the parts?

i have posted previously about using the lenham hard top, but looking at what options if any to go back to a permanent FHC, obviously if this is going to be be too expensive i will either not undertake it or just sell teh DHC and buy a FHC..

thoughts ?
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PostPost by: Lotusian » Sun Apr 04, 2021 2:21 pm

Very interesting project, and quite right to restore to original - it’ll never be a real dhc, and of course the fhc does look better.
Chris at Boss Motors in Snetterton will make you a roof with screen pillars and rear quarters. They might have a mould for the rear quarter interior trim panels - otherwise look for used parts).
As well as grafting on the new section, you’ll need to cut away most of the upstand on the rear body that the hood snaps onto, so as to fit the rear screen.
Someone on this site will have a fhc near you in Colchester - vital to check measurements, trim and finishing details.
Sue Miller will sell you most of the parts you need (rear screen, screen and door rubbers, headlining, gutters/drip rails, parcel shelf, etc, etc). Her catalogue has a list of the parts needed for fhc to dhc, so those are what you’ll be able to sell to help offset the cost.
Your loom will have connections for the courtesy lights.
You’ll need rear quarter air vent grilles too (often on eBay) and headlining supports, plus various that I haven’t thought of.
Be sure to post details and photos of your progress here.
Good luck
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PostPost by: andyj007 » Mon Apr 05, 2021 5:48 am

thank you for all that information! I will give them a call and start to get a feeling for costings before committing to this reinstatement..
aj
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PostPost by: nmauduit » Mon Apr 05, 2021 8:53 am

I also consider the FHC tend to have the purest lines, including elans. Hardtops may (or may not) achieve a functional purpose, but the resulting bodylines are never quite the same.

The fiberglass work should not be too difficult as the grafting remains in area far from the long curves. You may want to be carefully measuring your front windscreen, possibly with a blank fitting before painting in case some triming would be required for a confortable snug fit. Sourcing a rear screen may lead you to get a plastic one.
Then paint may be the most of external costs, depending on your original color and paint condition (partial or full respray).

Taking the time to adjust the top will be key : building a simple wood frame to help position it may help ? good luck, and keep us posted of the work !
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PostPost by: elancoupe » Mon Apr 05, 2021 9:35 am

Obtaining rear windows has been somewhat problematic, there seems to be a trend toward lexan due to their scarcity.
Mike
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