Lotus Elan

Window filler strip

PostPost by: 69S4 » Tue May 29, 2018 11:36 am

Anyone have their windscreen rubber filler strip go 'rusty'? Below is a picture of what mine looks like at present with a section of new strip above. If it's all plastic how can it discolour like that (I don't suppose it's really rust, it just looks like it).

I bought a replacement length of strip some months ago and (more recently) the fitting tool but I've been a bit reluctant to rip the old one out as I don't have much of an idea what I'll be getting myself into. How difficult a job is it? Any hints / tips / things to watch out for (including "take it to a professional" if that's the consensus).


trim-strip.jpg and
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PostPost by: lotusfan » Tue May 29, 2018 12:04 pm

Stuart

It's not that difficult. Start at the joint of the old one picking it out carefully using a small screwdriver, be careful not to scratch the paintwork! When you have a bit of it out the rest of it simply pulls out.

I also bought the fitting tool but could never make it work, I simply pressed the new one in using my thumbs and a bit of Fairy liquid.

If your windscreen rubber is old and not very flexible it could be more difficult and it may be time to either live with it or change the rubber as well.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Tue May 29, 2018 9:23 pm

The 'chrome' is a film within the trim.
It's not moulded in the trim which foods over it. So water can get in and discoloration is likely.
It isn't a difficult job - use the tool from 'behind' with the washing up mixture and it should go in ok.
The corners need a bit of effort to get a decent shape.
Cut the trim a bit long and force the tail in as the trim tends to shrink a bit.
Last edited by MarkDa on Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: 69S4 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:35 pm

Ok, I've done the rear screen. So how did I get on? Firstly, I bought the Gunson fitting tool from Amazon. It turned up in a box as a handle and a whole load of loose twisted wire bits but no instructions or anything. I had to get a photo on Google to work out which bits I needed and how it went together.

With the tool and a spray bottle of soapy water + a little while in the sun to warm everything up the new filler strip went in very easily. If you didn't keep the tool at the correct angle the strip sometimes didn't seat properly but usually I'd notice that within a couple of inches and could go back. The roller following on behind the spreader was a real help. My screen rubber is about 15yrs old but was still flexible enough to open up and reseal behind.

I was a little apprehensive about the two sharp corners - bottom right and bottom left - but with the tool the change of direction didn't cause any problem. I left about 1cm extra at each end and pushed the strip back along the groove with a screwdriver until the ends met.

In total it only took me about 10 minutes + a few more to wash off the black rubber slime that came off the rubber.
Now I need to order some more filler strip and do the front screen.
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PostPost by: USA64 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:18 pm

Where does the trim begin/end? I'm thinking the bottom middle but a corner might show less. Talking S4 Elan windshield.
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PostPost by: 69S4 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:50 pm

The rear screen filler is in one piece with the ends meeting in the middle at the bottom. The strip that came out matched the positioning of the even older strip that predates my early 80's ownership.

The front screen is one straight piece along the bottom and a longer U (but upside down) piece that does the top and sides. They meet at the bottom corners where they're beveled 45 degrees. At least that's what mine is like at the moment. That rubber + sealing strip was put in by a pro screen fitter so whether he just took the easy way out or not I don't know. Either way its been done very well and I had to look closely to see it was joined.
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PostPost by: pharriso » Fri Jun 01, 2018 3:34 pm

69S4 wrote:The front screen is one straight piece along the bottom and a longer U (but upside down) piece that does the top and sides. They meet at the bottom corners where they're beveled 45 degrees. At least that's what mine is like at the moment. That rubber + sealing strip was put in by a pro screen fitter so whether he just took the easy way out or not I don't know. Either way its been done very well and I had to look closely to see it was joined.


Having examined a number of original cars with original moldings & windshields I have come to the conclusion that the front screen molding fill strip was also a single piece with the joint in the middle at the bottom. i.e. no mitre joints done in the corners.
fillerstripcorner.jpg and

I did mine the same way upon replacement with the infamous tool after warning up the infill strip.
Last edited by pharriso on Fri Jun 01, 2018 5:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: 69S4 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 4:02 pm

Hmm. I must have looked at an odd picture of how the filler strip tool is assembled as mine ended up with the roller below the diamond shape thing. It worked very well like that but it would have been helpful if it had come with assembly info. But then again I suppose us professionals are supposed to know this stuff ... (which one's the irony smilie: :roll: :wink: :? :lol: )

When I come to do the front next week I'll try it assembled like your picture - and see if I can get it on in one section.
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PostPost by: types26/36 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 5:25 pm

You had it correct, the roller is supposed to be below the diamond.
It can be seen here in the Mini Manual.
https://www.uscars.biz/uscars/mini-docu ... xn990e.pdf
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PostPost by: pharriso » Fri Jun 01, 2018 5:47 pm

69S4 wrote:Hmm. I must have looked at an odd picture of how the filler strip tool is assembled as mine ended up with the roller below the diamond shape thing. It worked very well like that but it would have been helpful if it had come with assembly info. But then again I suppose us professionals are supposed to know this stuff ... (which one's the irony smilie: :roll: :wink: :? :lol: )

When I come to do the front next week I'll try it assembled like your picture - and see if I can get it on in one section.


Hmm that is a picture I just grabbed... it is wrong!! I will rmove it to remove any confusion... Brian's picture is correct...

The wire opens the slot for the filler to feed in & the roller presses the filler in afterwards...
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PostPost by: 69S4 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 9:41 am

Below is a picture of what my fitting tool looked like after I assembled it. The gap between the roller and the diamond doesn't look right to me but if you reverse the diamond to lower it it jams on the roller. I suppose I could have put them in a vice and bent them but as a. I didn't know what it was supposed to look like and b. you'd hope the manufacturer's bends and twists were as they intended, that's what I came up with.

However, being left handed, I do have a history of doing things backwards so I may have got it completely wrong. Either way it did work very well as long as the tool was used at about a 30 degree angle.


trim-fitting-tool.jpg and
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PostPost by: 1owner69Elan » Sat Jun 02, 2018 7:47 pm

Just to confirm what Pharriso posted about where the strip begins and ends.

Definitively, on my original (highly discolo(u)red) strip it is a single strip (no mitered corners) starting/ending in the bottom middle (you can see the gap in picture below).

img_9733.jpg and


img_9734.jpg and



I'm intending on replacing the rubber and filler strip later this year in the context of a possible respray. Tempted to replace them now (I have the parts) but figure they'll just have to come out again for paint.
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PostPost by: 69S4 » Sun Jun 03, 2018 7:28 am

So it looks like the windscreen guy may have put mine in as two sections to ease his workflow - time is money and all that. I can spend a bit more time on it so I'll see if there is a bending issue or some other problem. It may of course be that he just thought it looked neater as you don't get the corner distortion as long as you can cut the angles correctly. I ought to remember really as I was standing over him as he did it but I don't think I was too bothered about the niceties, just relieved the glass had survived the slapping and banging needed to seat it in the new rubber.

I see your trim has got the 'rust' bug as well. I'll have to cut an old section open and see if I can work out what's going on - unless anyone's already got the answer.
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