Lotus Elan

+2 Roof.

PostPost by: HCA » Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:02 am

Good morning - I have just joined as I might be a potential user depending on finding myself the 'right' Elan, on which subject I have a question I hope someone can answer.

I always liked the design of the second Elan, and have the ownership of one on my bucket list. However, all the decent ones I come across have had this insane folding roof conversion inflicted on them. I never understood the fad back in the day of having a webasto roof on everything - especially a car like the Elan where the clean lines are completely ruined.

I wonder therefore if anyone has felt like me and successfully brought a butchered roof back to standard, and if so, how?

Does anyone still have the body moulds for the +2 Elan I wonder? If the moulds are still in use, I can see the rectification being a bit simpler, but I am not having much joy in finding an answer to this question on the internet.

Any help is appreciated!
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PostPost by: alanr » Sat Jan 04, 2020 8:54 am

Hi,
Can't help with your question about reverting a sunroof car to solid roof. Of course it can be done, but it will be a messy and not nice job to do. It depends on how good you are with fibreglass bodywork or how deep your pockets are?
I do though know exactly where you are coming from with Webasto roofs. Having had leaky sunroofs in the past when I was looking for a +2 there was no way I was going to buy one with any kind of sunroof fitted.
Keep looking I would say and you will find a +2 without one...I did! They are out there. Do bear in mind though that the perfect Elan or +2 does not exist! They are all nearly 50years old now and most if not all will have been messed around with, altered or bodged over time either bodily or mechanically and in far from perfect or original condition.

Just my thoughts,

Alan.
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PostPost by: DUKE » Sat Jan 04, 2020 8:36 pm

Hi, Try contacting Boss Motors of Snetterton on 01953 887471.
I believe they have the moulds for the older cars.
Worth a ring.
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PostPost by: Slowtus » Sat Jan 04, 2020 8:42 pm

HCA wrote:Good morning - I have just joined as I might be a potential user depending on finding myself the 'right' Elan, on which subject I have a question I hope someone can answer.

I always liked the design of the second Elan, and have the ownership of one on my bucket list. However, all the decent ones I come across have had this insane folding roof conversion inflicted on them. I never understood the fad back in the day of having a webasto roof on everything - especially a car like the Elan where the clean lines are completely ruined.

I wonder therefore if anyone has felt like me and successfully brought a butchered roof back to standard, and if so, how?



Does anyone still have the body moulds for the +2 Elan I wonder? If the moulds are still in use, I can see the rectification being a bit simpler, but I am not having much joy in finding an answer to this question on the internet.

Any help is appreciated!


You could always go the (almost) Full Monty route a la Christopher Neil...the Plus 2 looks good topless - when done correctly.
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PostPost by: HCA » Sat Jan 04, 2020 10:22 pm

Thanks Duke, a good lead. I will try him next week.

Sorry Slowtus, the topless just does not do it for me! Older topless cars are ok with the roof down, but the roof up makes them look tatty. Not until the likes of Mercedes waded in with a tailored roof do they look any good - in my opinion anyway!

It is made worse for me now, because the one car I have my eye on, that has a sunroof, I am told by the owner that it is a factory fit and has Lotus plates on the frame. I did not know it was a factory option. I thought the Lotus designers prided themselves on style - why would they allow these things? :cry: :cry:

Decisions decisions - I buy the car and live with it, but Murpys law states that as soon as I do that the same car will pop up without a sunroof :lol:

S1420056.JPG and
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PostPost by: Slowtus » Sun Jan 05, 2020 1:58 am

HCA wrote:Thanks Duke, a good lead. I will try him next week.

Sorry Slowtus, the topless just does not do it for me! Older topless cars are ok with the roof down, but the roof up makes them look tatty. Not until the likes of Mercedes waded in with a tailored roof do they look any good - in my opinion anyway!

It is made worse for me now, because the one car I have my eye on, that has a sunroof, I am told by the owner that it is a factory fit and has Lotus plates on the frame. I did not know it was a factory option. I thought the Lotus designers prided themselves on style - why would they allow these things? :cry: :cry:

Decisions decisions - I buy the car and live with it, but Murpys law states that as soon as I do that the same car will pop up without a sunroof :lol:

S1420056.JPG


Based on that photo I would suggest STRONGLY that ANYTHING would look better...including chopping the top.

For what it is worth I did it to one of mine and was very pleased with the result. So was the gent who saw me out driving in the car and immediately thrust large amounts of money into my hands to buy the car.

Yes, the 'top up' can be frightful, even Christopher Neil did not do a great job...c'mon buy it get the Sawzall out and hack away. If it doesn't work out you can always glue it back together. :D
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PostPost by: alanr » Sun Jan 05, 2020 8:50 am

Back in the '70s lots of small companies were fitting sunroofs.The Webasto folding one was the most poular one in the UK as per the one in your photo. Later came the glass panel opening variety which looked even more awful. Doubtful if Lotus themselves fitted it to the car you are looking at. They would just call in a local one man fitter who fitted them for a living.
Some people like them, gawd knows why, but I would say that if you don't like the idea of the sunroof now it won't grow on you after you have bought the car!
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:39 am

The reason that I keep 'coming back' to this car is that number one on my list is to have a cream interior! This car meets this, has been cared for very well and with 80k on the clock, should be good for some years to come. Lotus did a lovely light blue/silver with cream, but I have only ever seen one recently and it was snapped up for a lot of money.

OK, back to the subject - I shall certainly call Boss motors as it will be quite easy but laborious to add in a panel especially if I can flip the car over. Without a panel will be possible, just more work. I did this on an MGBGT - bronzed in a section and overcame the visible outline by another fad in the seventies - making it a viyl roof. It worked an absolute treat and still in use twenty years on!

I do not like vinyl roofs, but at least it does not upset the style, and for me is one better than a Webasto!

Two questions please:

Is there a kit that will attach a rotisserie to the Elan+2 chassis?

Did Lotus ever supply cars with vinyl roof coverings?
Last edited by HCA on Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: JonB » Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:43 am

?Some people like them - gawd knows why..?

I like the idea of a sunroof on a Plus 2. You only have to spend a few days driving in hot weather to appreciate this point of view. The interior of the car gets very hot, even with a (closed) valve on the heater pipe. Like driving in a greenhouse.

I?ve never owned a car with one of these Webasto type sunroofs but I can see there might be a tendency to assume it?s not going to leak if it looks in good nick. As to looks, I find them inoffensive enough, and smart if fitted well and not sun bleached. I?d love one on my car.
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Sun Jan 05, 2020 12:03 pm

?Some people like them - gawd knows why..?

Fitted a " glass tilt-up , lift out " sunroof to mine and loved it , water-tight , a lot brighter in the cabin , strengthened the " flimsy " roof and as JonB says , in Summer extra ventilation
Unlike the Webasto it just blended into the roofline...

Each to their own I suppose..

John ;-)
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Jan 05, 2020 12:22 pm

I think the glass ones were called moon roof iirc? I'd prefer the car had one of these - as you note, the lines are not totally spoilt.
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PostPost by: alanr » Sun Jan 05, 2020 12:24 pm

Humble apologies if my comment about not liking sunroofs offended anyone, just my line of thinking!
It wouldn't do if we all liked the same thing would it.
'Each to his own' as they say. :D

Alan.
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Sun Jan 05, 2020 1:07 pm

No offence, each to their own,Piccie...
sunroof.JPG and


john ;-)
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PostPost by: RichC » Sun Jan 05, 2020 1:49 pm

might i suggest you consider cutting a roof piece out of a scrapped shell to fit? :idea:
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PostPost by: The Veg » Sun Jan 05, 2020 2:07 pm

I envy what you lot over there think of as 'hot weather.' I've had several modern non-Lotus cars that had factory glass sunroofs, and I find that in much of year, opening them -or even opening the shade below the tinted glass- roasts me in the solar intensity. But raising the rear edge of the glass is nice when the weather isn't hot enough to require aircon, and on temperate nights retracting the glass is fun. Oh and I also use the sunroof to accommodate longer boards when I have to buy one for a household project! :mrgreen:
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