Lotus Elan

Headlamp hardware

PostPost by: lightwait26 » Fri Aug 05, 2022 4:06 am

I am trying to piece together some non failsafe headlamp pods/vacuum cylinders. Can someone direct me to a drawing or photo showing the proper sequence of the bolts/ washers/spacers for the fasteners attaching the vacuum cylinders and spring to the light pod? I have seen one diagram online , but it wasn’t distinct enough, and I do not have a parts book.
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PostPost by: Andy8421 » Fri Aug 05, 2022 6:43 am

Rdent have the parts list online.

https://www.rdent.com/manuals/index.html

I am afraid I couldn't link directly to the page for the headlights, you need to select the "Elan / Body / Exterior" folder and then select 'Pop-up HL'

The diagram shows how the assembly goes together.
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PostPost by: oldelanman » Fri Aug 05, 2022 8:04 am

The Parts List and other useful data is available in the Wiki on this site too..
https://lotuselan.net/wiki/Lotus_Elan_Wiki

The headlamp system is here ....
https://lotuselan.net/wiki/BL_-_Body_-_ ... uum_System

From the parts list you should have on each pod:-
1/4" UNF bolt, 1/4" nyloc nut, spacer sleeve, 3 off 7/16" ID plain washers, 2 off 1/4" ID plain washers

The diagram is not very helpful but I believe the assembly sequence is as follows:-
Bolt
Sleeve
7/16" ID washer
Spring eye
7/16" ID washer
Actuator rod eye
7/16" ID washer
1/4" ID washer
Headlamp pod
1/4" ID washer
Nyloc nut

The idea is that the bolt and sleeve are clamped to the headlamp pod and the spring and actuator rod are free to rotate around it, hope that makes sense. Grease it well on assembly along with the pod pivot bolts.
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PostPost by: lightwait26 » Fri Aug 05, 2022 4:57 pm

Thanks guys, very helpful.

Unfortunately, the “loops” in my new vacuum pods are not made big enough, the spacers won’t go through :(
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PostPost by: oldelanman » Fri Aug 05, 2022 5:36 pm

lightwait26 wrote:Thanks guys, very helpful.

Unfortunately, the “loops” in my new vacuum pods are not made big enough, the spacers won’t go through :(


Oh that's a bugger!
Maybe you can use a slightly longer bolt and secure it with a nut and washer either side of the pod and leave out the spacer sleeve. Hopefully the loop of the actuator rod is big enough to fit over the bolt shank.
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Aug 07, 2022 9:38 am

I am going to hijack this thread as a suitable one in which to ask a question that I have always wanted to ask, but never dared…!

Having ditched the cumbersome lift headlamp mechanism on the 26R for (what I think) very striking fixed headlamps, and with the over quoted “add lightness”, why did Lotus not continue the idea on the later road Elans..?
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PostPost by: SimonH » Sun Aug 07, 2022 10:21 am

HCA wrote:I am going to hijack this thread as a suitable one in which to ask a question that I have always wanted to ask, but never dared…!

Having ditched the cumbersome lift headlamp mechanism on the 26R for (what I think) very striking fixed headlamps, and with the over quoted “add lightness”, why did Lotus not continue the idea on the later road Elans..?


Pop up lights were to allow the car to be lower profile at the front but have the lights at the required legal height for use. The 26r lights are below this level I would imagine.
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Aug 07, 2022 12:33 pm

OK, that sounds logical to me. I knew there must be some good reason, as no sane designer would choose to fit such a mechanism as the Elan has.. :D

The cynic in me though asks if the front profile of the Europa was any higher than the Elan…?
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PostPost by: SimonH » Sun Aug 07, 2022 1:40 pm

It must be just within the limits set. In the USA it wasn’t and they had longer front springs fitted to lift the nose to make them legal. They had a bodge pod made first similar to a frog eye sprite had.
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PostPost by: Mazzini » Sun Aug 07, 2022 2:42 pm

HCA wrote:OK, that sounds logical to me. I knew there must be some good reason, as no sane designer would choose to fit such a mechanism as the Elan has.. :D

The cynic in me though asks if the front profile of the Europa was any higher than the Elan…?


Lotus used longer front springs on the Elan and Europa for the US market. Occasionally NOS Federal springs turn up and from memory they have a slightly different PN, but I don't think anybody would want them.

The type 65 Europa may have had raised front wings, but I can't remember. The type 46 and 54 was how the Europa was intended to look, the 65 was Federalised.
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Aug 07, 2022 2:50 pm

OK, thanks - you have answered what has puzzled me for years! I must say though, if I ever get a two seat Elan, the first modification - after EFI of course - would be to change the lights to the 26R style.

You have me thinking that I should check out minimum light heights as I have in my mind for some time to change my +2 front end to an a la Europa style, but using 90mm LED lamps….
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PostPost by: h20hamelan » Sun Aug 07, 2022 3:48 pm

HCA
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PostPost by: SimonH » Sun Aug 07, 2022 4:00 pm

Once it’s built and in private ownership then you can do as you please. It was just to get the cars to comply with the rules as they left the factory.
If I had an elan I’d probably do the light conversion as well. Not sure if the idea works as well on a plus2 but would be interesting to see one
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Aug 07, 2022 4:16 pm

If the height is not checked on the MoT, then imo it is a no brainer to change the lights and I wonder even more why people persist in fiddling with vac, pods, springs, relays and fittings!

Have a look at Verve’s converted car in the active topics - it looks a million times better than standard! In my opinion 8)
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PostPost by: HCA » Sun Aug 07, 2022 4:22 pm

h20hamelan wrote:HCA
There are +2’s out there with the Perspex

There are, yes, but they do not look quite right imo.
I think to do the job properly, the change needs to be more like the TVR Cerbera Red Rose. As lamps are now quite small, this would be do-able.
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