Lotus Elan

DIY power windows: Re-engineering the Chapman system

PostPost by: yellowelan » Thu Sep 11, 2014 5:00 pm

Your questions will be answered with the install but essentially yes. Once I was happy with the mockup outside of the skin. I took everything apart and reassembled them inside the door skin.

The worm drive stays inside the blue plastic hose that came with the kit. Which brings me to my main gripe with this kit. This part of the kit is completely unusable It is held onto the motor and rail by a small jubilee clips. Unfortunately no matter how I installed it the hose kept popping out when you power up the motor. It is poorly designed. I don't have a photo of mine but this is a picture from the instruction manual. On my version the hose is blue.

autoloc1.jpg and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Thu Sep 11, 2014 5:07 pm

The problem is the unit really operates poorly unless the motor is mounted inline with the track. This won't work in an elan. Despite the manual showing countless drawings with the motor positioned at sharp angles from the track in real life it doesn't work.

It binds and blows out at these points with only the slightest curve in the hose. I tried alternate hoses such as fuel hoses, garden hoses but found it had the same problem. Having some stretch in the hose only made it worse. The hose attachment points are also too short. I tried stronger jubilee clips but still had the same problem.

20140912_171108.jpg and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 1:38 pm

I bought these fuel hose 5/16 weld fittings and was going to weld them to the ends of the motor and window track so the hoses had a bit more bite. Unfortunately the internal diameter is too small for the worm drive. I guess if one tried 3/8 fittings it may work. You need at least 7mm internal diameter.

20140912_171934.jpg and

20140912_171948.jpg and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 1:42 pm

The solution: rigid plumbing copper pipe and keep the short and least bend as possible but long enough so you can still mount the motor inside the door cavity:

20140912_172013.jpg and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:00 pm

I bolted a piece of 3mm flat bar across the bottom to mount the track before cutting the center from the original frame. You need to do this otherwise the window does not slide up and down smoothly. Although it looks completely butchered it is actually a lot more rigid then the original metal. You may also notice I had to cut some metal from the top of the frame to allow clearance for the window clamp mechanism:

P1030887.JPG and


The bottom of the window track as well as the copper pipe are bolted on to this flat bar.
Last edited by yellowelan on Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:03 pm

Here is a picture from the other side:
P1030850.JPG and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:11 pm

The jubilee clip is lightly clamping the tube to the bottom of the power window track.

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The pipe is mounted with the jubilee clip through a L shaped bracket which is bolted to the flat bar. In fact this little bracket was left over from when I was installing some Lockwood window locks.

20140912_171154.jpg and
Last edited by yellowelan on Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:17 pm

I tried various copper pipe lengths and curves. The final length and curve that worked the best for me I've mocked up with this piece of wire:

20140912_171359.jpg and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:34 pm

Now at the motor end I have a copper pipe end to end joiner. It just allows the setup to flex a bit when the window reaches the top and bottom. You may have noticed I have mounted the motor onto a second piece of flat bar. I also cut off the two bottom mounting holes from the motor:

P10308871.JPG and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:37 pm

The motor and 2nd flat bar when disassembled looks like this:

P1030886.JPG and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:46 pm

I had some clearance issues on the door skin with the top of the track. I only had to cut a small bit off. You can't see it once assembled.

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All the green stuff is masking tape. I put it on top of the window frame and door skin to stop damage to the paintwork and chrome. I must of taken it in and out at least 50 times.
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:54 pm

Here is the completed frame mocked up outside of the door skin you see in the video:

P1030847.JPG and


P1030852.JPG and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:55 pm

As you can see all the original window frame bolt holes are still there. You can always reinstate the old system.
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:39 pm

The motor when bolted to the piece of bar no matter how hard you try will not fit inside the door cavity.

With it dismantled I slide the flat bar inside the bottom door cavity:

P1030889.JPG and
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PostPost by: yellowelan » Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:41 pm

The motor fits in the bottom left hole and I bolt it onto the metal flat bar:

P1030890.JPG and
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