Lotus Elan

S2 / 3 rear light surround

PostPost by: Maulden7 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:12 pm

Can anyone suggest a company in the UK who can restore / replate the "mazak metal" of the above?

I've just dug through a box of used parts in the garage & come across three complete units, but they all need restoration.

Thanks.
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:26 pm

Derby Plating are probably your best bet for Mazak. They are the best, and the most expensive, but repairing then re-plating Mazak if a tricky process, and I would only trust the best not to destroy the items!

http://derbyplating.co.uk/

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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:58 pm

Thanks Mark - I'll give them a call.
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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:45 am

Estimate is ?110 - ?140 per piece & they want to see them first to make sure restoration is possible (which is fair enough)

I think that two of the surrounds are restorable, but not sure about the third. Will get them dismantled from the lamp units & posted.

Dave M.
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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:02 am

Update - none of the surrounds are refurbishable.

I have to say that two of them do not look too bad (the third one doesn't surprise me) but it just goes to show.

The comment from DP is that although the external mark just looks like a pin prick, underneath there is a "crater"!

I might have a go at the really bad part & see if any metal work I can undertake at home creates a smooth surface that can then be plated.
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PostPost by: bill308 » Tue Oct 18, 2016 12:23 pm

Kelsport lists new replacement bezels (RACERLB) for 68 GBP each.

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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Tue Oct 18, 2016 1:39 pm

Thanks.

Yes, but they need chroming, & when I bought a pair a few years back, the first one literally exploded when it was being polished prior to plating because there were air pockets in the casting. The air expanded with the heat & the pocket blew out nearly injuring the guy who was working on it. He refused to touch the second piece.

Perhaps they're ok now, but I'll have a go myself on what is a scrap part anyway. Might be time consuming, but worth a go over the winter.
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PostPost by: bigvalvehead » Tue Oct 18, 2016 2:30 pm

I have had really bad rims restored by vacuum metalising. This is the process by which all modern plastic car badges are "chromed". after completion a coat of clear laquer is all that is needed.
I have 8 rims that I am preparing to get coated at the moment.

Give me a call on 07740 401519 next week. I am in USA until 25th Oct.
Cheers
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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Tue Oct 18, 2016 4:52 pm

Thanks Dave
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PostPost by: bill308 » Thu Oct 20, 2016 9:49 pm

Hi Maulden7.

Are the Kelsport parts cast Mazak or aluminum?

I thought they might be fabricated aluminum that can be polished to look like chrome. How is it that polishing can cause a metal piece to explode(like a bomb)?

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PostPost by: billwill » Thu Oct 20, 2016 11:54 pm

I sanded, filled & smoothed mine. Then instead of Chrome I painted them the same colour as the bumpers.

I.e I treated them much like a fibre-glass repair.
Bill Williams

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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Fri Oct 21, 2016 8:50 am

Are the Kelsport parts cast Mazak or aluminum?

I thought they might be fabricated aluminum that can be polished to look like chrome. How is it that polishing can cause a metal piece to explode(like a bomb)?


Bill - I cannot comment on the current Kelsport rims as I don't know what they are made of. I bought mine some years ago when Pat Thomas was the owner, & they were certainly designed to be chrome plated (Pat wouldn't sell them already plated)

The company working on the pieces had already done a lot of plating for me (door handles / boot hinges / door fittings etc) & their work had been excellent (all those parts are still on the car now) I saw the damaged surround, & an area along the straight edge had literally blown out during the polishing process. There was nothing left over a length of approximately half an inch. Obviously polishing creates some heat in the metal, & the only explanation that the company could suggest was that an air pocket had been left in the relatively thin metal during the casting process, & the air expansion caused by the heat had resulted in the metal "exploding".

I intend to investigate the vacuum metalising as suggested.
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PostPost by: cabc26b » Fri Oct 21, 2016 11:34 pm

I just went through this process here in the states - I send over 4 rims to my plater ( Dallas plating, Dallas GA , not TX ) and told them to fix the two that looked to be the easiest to refinish - They pickle ( strip off the chrome) then work on filling the voids/holes , build back up with copper plate, then onto the rest of the steps finishing with Chrome. Im satisfied with the results and the cost was under $150/item - the rate to fix the metal is 65/hr

Attached are some pictures - you can imagine the process - the holes shown on the pickled piece were not apparent when dropped off .

George
Attachments
taillight-closeup.jpg and
taillight-chrome.jpg and
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PostPost by: Maulden7 » Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:39 am

Thanks George - that's very much the sort of process that I thought I could have a go at myself. The only part I can't do is the "pickleing", but I would think that I can remove the existing plating mechanically.

Worth a go I think, & I can look into the vacuum metalising as well.

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PostPost by: el-saturn » Sat Oct 22, 2016 9:48 am

........................just a composite's specialists suggestion: ill make a tool to make 'em in wet laminated CFRP!! ..................................................anyone wanna join me in this pursuit?? sandy 36 / 4982
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