Lotus Elan

26R Type Headlight Buckets

PostPost by: Davidb » Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:29 pm

I think this has been gone over before Bill. In any event Jon and I are both in Canada-although 2500 miles apart-and they don't seem to spend their time measuring the height of headlights here! (I suspect they don't in the UK either), so no problem anticipated.
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PostPost by: billwill » Sun Nov 19, 2017 4:45 pm

I see that you titled this Headlight Buckets and it just struck me that you might be able to find a plastic bucket of the right size to make the lower portion.

This could then be used as-is or used to make a mould for making a fibre-glass version.
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PostPost by: JonnyPlus2 » Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:11 pm

Hi Bill,

Interesting idea. No one makes fiberglass buckets but a plastic one could be used to make a mold. I shall retain this idea for when I get to making the buckets. Thanks.
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PostPost by: Davidb » Wed Nov 29, 2017 11:20 pm

Jon, I just started stripping the lights out of my car in preparation for the conversion. Once the headlight units are removed you are faced with the 'hinges' that they rotate on:-remove them or not? I would rather not, just in case... So I did some looking on the forum and reminded myself what a lovely job '65ginetta' did with his car-he left the hinges in place. Scroll down to the bottom of page one for photos of the headlight conversion:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/65ginetta/page1
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PostPost by: Davidb » Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:59 pm

One of the things I like about '65ginetta' s conversion is that he used the hinges as mounting points for the clear covers--very Chapmanesque...
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PostPost by: JonnyPlus2 » Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:42 pm

Hi David,

Mr G. did a really nice job. It makes me despair of ever finishing my car. Very clever to use the bobbins but I'm more of a scorched earth kind of guy so mine are going into the dumpster. I remember going up the cut from Lions Gate bridge to the Upper Levels Highway in my Plus 2 and my headlights sunk lower and lower and lower . . . and that's *after* I had "fixed" them. :D

I have seen at least one example of every make of car that has popups lights that had one stuck up or down. I dunno why Chunky foisted that off on us and I wish he hadn't.

No updates at this end, I've been busy or sick or in England, the dog ate my homework etc etc.
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PostPost by: billwill » Fri Dec 01, 2017 3:12 pm

JonnyPlus2 wrote:
I have seen at least one example of every make of car that has popups lights that had one stuck up or down. I dunno why Chunky foisted that off on us and I wish he hadn't.



To get a slim aerodynamic profile, but yet get the headlights high enough to satisfy regulations in the UK, I understand.
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PostPost by: Davidb » Fri Dec 01, 2017 4:47 pm

[quote="1owner69Elan"]The flat vertical mounting pieces for the 26r headlights are available from Kelsport and TTR. As far as the rest of the bucket, curved or square, apparently this must be fabricated.

I have the vertical fiberglass pieces from TTR. Really not much to them. Just cut from a thin sheet of flat fiberglass.

As TTR told me, closing the pod off with bottom and side pieces is according to personal preference. Many 26r cars just leave it open.

Here is a picture of a "real" 26r that shows the area as open:

IMG_8185-2.JPG


I think we need to look at this again. This forum is considered a place of reference where the Lotus Elan is concerned.
In the mid sixties Lotus were a car manufacturer competing with long established companies-the series 2 26R, in component form, cost more than a Jaguar E type. The 26R was intended to compete in International events, often running at night, and would have needed properly finished head lights.
I have never seen an original 26R with unfinished headlight openings as pictured above. I believe the car pictured has either a replacement body, a replacement front end or is simply not a 26R (but then, the "real" in quotation marks may indicate the original poster thought that) I am sure Tony Thompson was referring to replacement bodies.

Edit: Can someone figure out why the photo from earlier in this thread is not coming up?
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PostPost by: Davidb » Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:05 pm

Yesterday I finally set out to acquire headlight buckets for my conversion. I went to a local wrecking yard that has specialized in English and European cars for years. As I was removing the headlight buckets from an XJ12 whose 'better years' were a very long time ago I recalled removing a rear wing from an Austin Healey 3000 not twenty feet from where the XJ12 now rots-forty three years ago for my then current project...

The headlight buckets should work fine. I have a template that Kelveden supplied for the vertical panel:
p1070662.jpg and


However, I think that by setting the panel back as far as possible, and by denting the rear of the headlight bucket I can move the headlight about an inch higher in the mounting panel and also backwards, thus removing the possibility of interference between the clear plastic cover and the headlight:
p1070663.jpg and


I have not been able to find fibreglass sheet locally-known as 'laminate' by some or FRP sheet apparently. I have some 1/8" ABS sheet which I have been told can be attached to fibreglass--any comments on that?
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PostPost by: Davidb » Thu Dec 07, 2017 2:21 am

Anyone know if ABS sheet will bond to fiberglass?
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PostPost by: JonnyPlus2 » Thu Dec 07, 2017 3:08 am

I'm shocked, shocked to discover that you can't find any locally. You could order a couple of bits online:
https://www.grainger.com/category/fiber ... alog/N-c19
or call up a boat supply place.

Good luck.

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PostPost by: nmauduit » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:42 am

Davidb wrote:Anyone know if ABS sheet will bond to fiberglass?

if you roughen the surface fiberglass will adhere to a lot of things, having very low viscosity before polymerization - you may also hold the flat sheet of ABS in place with a ribbon of fiberglass on both sides like a window frame.
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:54 am

Imho you could just put release wax on a board and lay up a piece yourself in 5 mins. :wink:
I think it will be better to laminate 100%
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PostPost by: Davidb » Thu Dec 07, 2017 4:39 pm

I too am shocked and dismayed that something as simple as a flat plate of fiberglass unavailable in Vancouver!

I read up on the 'net about bonding ABS to fiberglass and it seems iffy which is not good for headlight mounting.

I have been trying to avoid making it myself-the weather is not conducive right now and it smells and it makes a mess and I don't have any mat etc, etc. Just buying the bloody stuff seemed so easy!

I may order some from Graingers as Jon B suggested-thanks for the link Jon.
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PostPost by: JonnyPlus2 » Thu Dec 07, 2017 6:48 pm

Just to be clear, I am shocked but *not* dismayed :-): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMIyDf3gBoY
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