Lotus Elan

1970 S4 Elan SE w/rear end damage

PostPost by: hubrick » Sun Dec 12, 2021 11:33 pm

Well, after almost 2 years working on getting my Elan just right (with a lot of help from many of you on this forum, thank you), I was driving to a friends shop on Tuesday before Thanksgiving and a friend in his MGB hit me in the back while stopped at a light. Superficial dent and scratches to his car, but heavy damage to the light, fiberglass rear end and boot area of the Elan (fortunately no frame, suspension, or gas tank damage). It took Hagerty until late Friday night to give me the bad news - total (I hadn't increased the value as I improved it). Time for me to let it go - I'm willing to sell it for $13,500 as is, or make me an offer. If any of you are interested or know of someone who is, it will come with a salvage Montana title and a $9700 repair estimate. I've contacted Boss Motors in England (who have the original moulds!) - they'll make and ship a brand new, rear clip replacement from the rear door posts back, he's supposed to give me an estimate on Monday. Or if you're interested in a Series 3 conversion project, there's a complete 1967 body with doors, bonnet, headlight pods, and boot lid on sale on eBay for $4950. I was tempted. But I think it's time for me to move on. There are more pictures and many more details in this Craigslist ad.

https://batonrouge.craigslist.org/cto/d ... 86310.html
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After 3
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After 2
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After 1
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Engine
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Interior
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Before 2
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Before 1
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PostPost by: StressCraxx » Mon Dec 13, 2021 1:08 am

So sorry to see your misfortune. All of that can be repaired with some time, glass mat and resin. I repaired a similar event on my S3, but the bootlid was also broken up. The right rear quarter panel was in 7 pieces.

I cut up some 0.030 aluminum sheet, brought the pieces together like a puzzle and drilled into the pieces and the aluminum. I then pop riveted the puzzle pieces together to the aluminum, then pop riveted it all back on the body. I leveled the puzzle with a jitterbug sander and glassed all the pieces together. The rest was sanding, leveling, and filling with mat and resin until I had a good surface again. I found a used but badly stress cracked bootlid. That I sanded down paper thin and reglassed with two layers of tissue.

I repaired all of it for less than $600 plus my labor. We had a good match on paint and I painted it at home. I would fight the total loss with the insurance company. That's unacceptable for minor fiberglass damage.
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PostPost by: nmauduit » Mon Dec 13, 2021 8:50 am

pretty unfortunate, but on a positive note the wheel arch does not seem damaged (and the somewhat hard to find metal base of the rear lights appear ok, too), so the repair should be easier. Depending on close examination and diagnostic outcome, you may even not need a full rear clip but only an extended left rear quarter, which should make the repair section easy to ship if you so decide.

What I would do is first let the dust and despair settle down before taking a final decision.
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PostPost by: h20hamelan » Mon Dec 13, 2021 9:17 am

You got lots of marine glass fibre “Acadian” guys round there, you should be surprised getting it back for much more than $2k.
Like StressCraxx says, is an easy fix in the right hands
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PostPost by: gjz30075 » Mon Dec 13, 2021 9:42 am

Interesting about Boss Motors. I've been looking for a nose for my S3 and they quoted me a price
but have not gotten back to me, after two requests, for shipping to US. IF.....you are able to follow
through with Boss, please get with me concerning shipping an S3 nose piece with your shipment.
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PostPost by: lotustastic » Tue Dec 14, 2021 4:16 am

I’m sorry to hear of this unfortunate event. I have a rear 1/3 (approx) of an S4 available that I’m willing to donate for this project if needed. Located in Asheville, NC.

Thanks

David D.
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PostPost by: Mazzini » Tue Dec 14, 2021 6:17 am

You sir are a credit to this forum :-)
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PostPost by: pharriso » Tue Dec 14, 2021 6:43 am

Mazzini wrote:You sir are a credit to this forum :-)


+1 :D
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PostPost by: nmauduit » Tue Dec 14, 2021 8:50 am

This forum is amazing... a gathering of genuine enthusiasts who go a long way to keep the spirit alive.
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PostPost by: hubrick » Tue Dec 14, 2021 12:25 pm

Hello everybody, and especially David D.,
To say I'm stunned is quite an understatement. I've been overwhelmed by the help and support from this great group of enthusiasts for the almost 2 years I've owned my Elan, but David's rear end clip offer rises to the top of the list. Thank you just doesn't do it justice. Like has been said, you are a credit to this group.

Yes, David, thank you very much, this is the near perfect solution to my misfortune. Let's go off this thread and I'll figure out how to get it from your house to mine.

As they say, this changes everything. Already, those of you who have explained how my car could be repaired much more easily and inexpensively were very encouraging, and sharing the S3 body on sale on eBay was a great idea too, but having a S4 rear end clip is exactly what I need. So I'm going to grab it, and then figure out how to get some of those "Acadian" boat people to put two halves of a Series 4 Elan back together.

Thanks again for all the encouragement, ideas, and now, a rear end clip to salvage my Elan.

Cheers,
Rick Huber
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PostPost by: lotustastic » Tue Dec 14, 2021 4:07 pm

Thank you for the kind words…members of this forum have been great to me as well and I’m thankful. Being originally from New Orleans, us “Acadians” and forum members have to help each other out :)
I do help that it helps to maybe put a bright spot on an unfortunate incident.

Will be in touch

Thank you,

David D.
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PostPost by: RichardS » Wed Dec 15, 2021 9:09 am

What a heart warming thread for the festive season!
Good luck with the repairs
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PostPost by: skyarch » Wed Dec 15, 2021 8:27 pm

With such a display of generosity, (good on you lotustastic!), you're obliged to continue with your project!
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PostPost by: Bud English » Wed Dec 15, 2021 11:50 pm

With this latest development, you may want to consider pulling the insurance claim. Without the claim there is no reason to end up with a salvage title or taking a hit on your insurance. I'm not sure that it's your insurance that you are working with, though, being a rear end collision. Maybe some cash from the person that hit you would help with that decision and may benefit both of you in the long run.

I just went through the same thing with my perfectly good older truck potentially being totaled for cosmetic only damage due to it's age. I wanted to keep the truck without the salvage title. The guy that rear ended me is buying the parts and I'm doing the work. It's a PITA but we're making the best of a bad situation for both of us.

Just a thought.
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