Lotus Elan

Pre Air Flow Rear Quarter Panel Trim

PostPost by: Francisco » Mon May 04, 2020 11:32 pm

Hi all from Portugal. Hope you are all doing well during these very strange times.
I need the advise of this fantastic Forum and I apologise if the topic has been treated before.
My 1966 FHC Pre Air Flow Elan has two wooden pieces glued to the B post from inside to support the Rear Quarter Panel Trim. Is this correct? I searched everywhere and could not find any evidence they are original. If they are not how does the trim fixes to the body? I have sem in the Forum images and debates but they are all for Air Flow bodies.
Any help and possibily photos would be a big help!
Thank you in advance
Francisco
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PostPost by: Pastapesto » Tue May 05, 2020 12:48 am

Hello Francisco

From memory, it's been a while since I re-fitted mine, apologies if I have this wrong .... Yes, two pieces of wood bonded in with body filler (I think?)....2 blobs, one each end (not very technical description there!) on each piece of wood. I think the courtesy lamp and the coat hanger screw into the top piece of wood through the trim and I think the headlining material that covers them (confetti pattern I think!) is wrapped around the trim top and bottom but the sides wrap on one side into the door aperture and the other around the rear screen aperture and are glued. The bottom piece of wood is there to just give some rigidity to the trim. When you fit the door seal and the rear screen rubber they both hold the trim in place nicely.....on the later airflow cars they use a couple of sprung clips fitted into the trim that push into plastic cups (like the door trim clips) to allow air to flow though the cabin and through to the exterior vent. This allows the trim to sit away from the "B" pillar slightly. On the pre-airflow cars the trim is tight up against the inside of the "B" pillar. The trim should also sit over the top of the carpeted sill trim where they meet at the top.

I hope that helps, if you are still unclear then come back to me and I will explain in greater detail.

All the best

Adam
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PostPost by: bitsobrits » Tue May 05, 2020 1:21 am

Adams description is right on. When I removed the interior of my very original pre-airflow coupe for bodywork I was shocked at the incredibly crude pieces of wood held in with large blobs of adhesive. The one looks as if it was made from old packing crates trimmed with a hatchet. See attached photos.
Attachments
IMG_0251.jpeg and
top piece fell off when trim panel removed.
IMG_0250.jpeg and
Steve

Elan S1 1963-Bourne bodied
Elan S3 1967 FHC pre airflow

Formerly:
Elan S1 1964
Elan S3 1966 FHC pre airflow
Elan S3 1967 FHC airflow
Elan S4 1969 FHC
Europa S2 1970
Esprit S2 1979
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PostPost by: Francisco » Tue May 05, 2020 11:51 am

Thank you both for answering so fast and with clear explantion and the pictures!
The wooden pieces are exactly as the ones I have in my car , even to the rude finish!!
Thank you for the explantion regarding the trim fixing because it is nothing like I had on the car when I started the rebuit. It now sounds far more logic! I will contact again during assembling if anything goes...not so well!
Another problem solved with your help.
I cannot thank you enough!
Keep safe
All the best
Abraço
Francisco
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PostPost by: Pastapesto » Tue May 05, 2020 1:42 pm

Glad to help Francisco

A couple of things to remember...the top pieces on each side have 2" wide (approx!) notches in them. These are for the connections and wires that connect the courtesy lamps up. To the rear of each piece is the 2 holes that the coat hook screws into (it will be difficult to get to use the same holes so you might need to drill new ones -not very deep!). The courtesy lamps are towards the front of the vehicle and the coat hook goes to the rear. All on the same centreline if you know what I mean
On the R/H side of the car the lower wooden piece has a small notch in it to take the wires for the courtesy lamp.
On the L/H side there is a much wider notch...this is for the courtesy lamp cable and the main feed from the battery that runs along the left hand side of the car (tie wrapped to the wire framework and out of the way of the sill carpet trim....make sure it's nowhere near the screws that hold the sill trim on. You need all of these cables in place and any others perhaps such as an aerial cable or speaker cables (if you fit any in the rear) before the "B" pillar trims are fitted and glued in place (door return and rear screen return). Otherwise you will be glueing them again!
As bitsorbits said, they are crude bits of wood and I think I was so shocked at their quality that I remade some of mine.....they are not seen but it bothered me enough to do it....

Good luck with it ....what's your chassis number if you don't mind me asking? The pre air-flows are so pretty IMHO....

Adam
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PostPost by: Francisco » Tue May 05, 2020 2:25 pm

Hi Adam. Thank you again for your reply! It does not stop to surprise me how helpfull people in general are in this forum! Always trying to help! This is great! I thank you all for that.
My car had 3 of the 4 wooden pieces with it. The larger bottom one on the RHS was missing (maybe I lost it!!) and I had to made a copy using the LHS as a template. I understand now that they are slightly different but I do not feel like manufacturing another one!! To be honest the one I made has a far better finish than the original one! And I am not a wooden expert! They do look...crude indeed!!

My Elan has Chassis number 36/6055, exported new to Portugal in September 1966. It is a Elan Coupe S/E. More important it has Body Number "1620" that according to the Lotus Archive could be the last Pre Air Flow body Lotus has ever made.
It arrived here as an S/E with reverse ear wheel spinners as per Super Safety spec. I am sure of that but do not ask me why it was sent over here like that. I have the contact of its 1st owner and he confirms all is correct and he even has photos! I posted one here some time ago.

I am now in the last fase of an 8 year rebuilt. Almost there!!!

Thank you again Adam and bitsorbits and all that took the time to read and think about my post!
I do hope it has some use for others!

Keep safe
Francisco
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PostPost by: Elan45 » Wed May 06, 2020 5:45 pm

DSC00001.JPG and
Fransisco,
The other place in the coupe that you will find wood is at the center just aft of the windscreen, used to mount the mirror. I've had my pre-airflow coupe since 1978 and agree that they are the prettiest of all Elans. I was hoping to have mine back amoungst the living this year but things happen and this year a big part of what happened was corona virus. We are packing today to head back to Ohio soon, so there will be little progress until next autumn
'67 Elan S3 SS DHC
'67 Elan FHC pre-airflow
'67 Elan S3 SE upgrade to 26R by Original owner
'58 Eleven S2 (ex-works)
'62 20/22 FJ (ex-Yamura)
'70 Elan +2S RHD
'61 20 FJ project
'76 Modus M1 F3
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PostPost by: Francisco » Wed May 06, 2020 7:11 pm

Thank you Steve. I have to look at that one!! To be honest I removed the rear view mirror more than 8 years ago and never gave to much of a thought how it was fixed to the fiberglass! I just finished my day in the workshop so I will look at that tomorrow!
May I say that I do like your car in red. Back in 1987 I had a red Air Flow Coupe. It was one of the colours that were in discussion until I found that 1620 was Cirrus White when it left the factory.
May I wish you a nice and safe trip to Ohio.
Thank you again for the info.
Be safe
Francisco
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