Lotus Elan

Spider electric headlamp raising kit

PostPost by: Matt Elan » Sun Mar 13, 2016 4:47 pm

Has anyone tried the Spyder electric headlight kit?
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PostPost by: delle » Sun Mar 13, 2016 5:48 pm

http://www.spydercars.co.uk/electricy-h ... an-elan-2/

looks similar to the solution, I made myself using Mazda MX5 parts. Miss the switch on the pics.

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PostPost by: PeterK » Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:11 pm

You're seen my Toyota version, with home-made bracket Matt. Total cost of parts less than ?50
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PostPost by: TroonSprint » Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:47 pm

I'm pretty sure those are MX-5 motors. I bought mine for ?30 the pair off ebay. Fabricated the brackets from stuff I had in the garage, and made the linkage out of threaded rod and a couple of ball joints from Radiospares. Again less than ?50 in total and they work really well.

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PostPost by: RichardHawkins » Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:52 pm

Matt,

I also made my own using Mazda retractor motors, as have quite afew people on the forum. Although I am pleased with the result, it took a lot of time. The scrap yard proprietor thought I was the funniest thing he had seen in years. I took the retractors and wiring from an MX5 so that I could understand how they work. I was in his yard for 3 days, and took most of the MX5 to bits in order to get at the wiring. He kept coming to see if I was still alive, and or which bit I had removed next.

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PostPost by: Matt Elan » Sun Mar 13, 2016 8:34 pm

I've got a brace of mx5 motors and will probably diy it. I'm just interested if anyone has tried the Spyder kit.
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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Tue Mar 15, 2016 2:44 am

. . . it's all a "solution in search of a problem" IMHO . . . and probably a heavy one to boot (one of those dense/heavy motors compared to a single vacuum pod and a few feet of plastic tubing . . . )

Well, now I've gone and stirred the pot right royal, I reckon . . . :shock:

:mrgreen:

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PostPost by: dougal9887 » Tue Mar 15, 2016 7:37 am

It looks like it's a very comprehensive kit of parts.
The slotted lever on the balance bar is a good idea since it's the radius travelled here in relation to the radius travelled at the motor which determines the travel of the pod; this will cater for any variations.
The circuit board will replace the numerous relays required for a fully functioing system with flash ability.
Headlights.pdf
Headlight wiring diagram.
(151.21 KiB) Downloaded 319 times

Sure it can be done cheaper, but better?
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PostPost by: Spyder fan » Wed Mar 16, 2016 3:32 pm

I fitted an MX5 motor to my Failsafe system utilising the balance bar and fabricating a slotted lever. The whole thing controlled from a 3 position rotary switch on the dashboard in place of the vacuum control. Position 1, off, position 2 side lights and signal to lower, position 3 headlights and signal to raise, it worked really well, but the motor seemed a bit fast and I wondered if the headlamps were raising and especially lowering too fast and maybe causing a bit of damage. Decided that I would add a pulse type motor controller at some stage.

Went to Spyder for an MOT and service, and shock horror they copied my system and added a motor controller to set the speed.

Mine cost ?35 and an absolute age working out the wiring, fabricating the slotted lever and motor mount, getting the rod length and connections correct and swearing a lot because I am no auto electrician. I was fortunate to already have a failsafe system so no need to make the connecting bar or use 2 motors.

The Spyder kit is very comprehensive, yes it's based on an MX5 motor that can be obtained quite cheaply, but that's the only easy thing you will find if you make the kit up yourself.
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PostPost by: TroonSprint » Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:44 pm

. . it's all a "solution in search of a problem" IMHO . . . and probably a heavy one to boot (one of those dense/heavy motors compared to a single vacuum pod and a few feet of plastic tubing . . . )

Yes, I would agree with you, except that I only had one vacuum pod when my Sprint came to me, and that was all rusty. The electric motors was a simple and cheap solution.

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PostPost by: elanner » Wed Mar 16, 2016 11:14 pm

Just in case people aren't aware, Ray at rdent.com sells the vacuum tanks. (Ray to the rescue again.)

Fortunately I prefer the vacuum system because I'm pretty sure that I don't have the skill to fit an electrical system. ;-)

I think it is charming and quirky. And people find it fascinating. It always makes me smile when my non-failsafe headlamps gracefully pop up, to say nothing of being mildly surprising. :D

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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Wed Mar 16, 2016 11:41 pm

Way go, Nick. "Charming" . . . I like that. Next thing we'll be hearing the Elan is a "chick" car . . . :shock:

:wink:

:mrgreen:

As for the pods, turns out they're pretty easy to refurb. I coated the rusty end of mine with fiberglass (while I was doing bodywork) and you can coat the inner vacuum bladder/rubber with various things, including tire repair liquid rubber stuff.

It's not quite "baling wire and hammer" (the old Model T motto) but it's amazing what you can repair yourself on an old car with some ingenuity and patience. :mrgreen:

Regards,

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PostPost by: elanner » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:43 am

OK - topic drift....

Britt Eklund and Diana Rigg make a good start in the lady Elan drivers category!

Back in the 70s there was a lady with a really well used Elan that I used to see all the time in the Dorking/Reigate area of Surrey. She drove it with the hood down regardless of the weather all year round, and was clearly a hardy soul (embarrassingly, my hood would be up). She was no slouch either.

I never did get to meet her. Judging from the dirt on the car I always assumed she was on her way to or from some horsey thing.

The things one remembers..... :D

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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:55 am

Hmm . . . be a long shot to track her down now, Nick . . .

:shock:

:wink:

Good story, though :mrgreen:
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PostPost by: billwill » Thu Mar 17, 2016 1:17 pm

elanner wrote:OK - topic drift....

Britt Eklund and Diana Rigg make a good start in the lady Elan drivers category!

Back in the 70s there was a lady with a really well used Elan that I used to see all the time in the Dorking/Reigate area of Surrey. She drove it with the hood down regardless of the weather all year round, and was clearly a hardy soul (embarrassingly, my hood would be up). She was no slouch either.

I never did get to meet her. Judging from the dirt on the car I always assumed she was on her way to or from some horsey thing.

The things one remembers..... :D

Nick



That's not topic drift.. it's WAY off topic (to headlamp lifters) & deserves its own topic, should you actually want people to read it.
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