Lotus Elan

Replacement VIN Plate

PostPost by: Foxie » Sat May 13, 2023 11:51 am

The VIN plate on this1968 Plus 2 basket case restoration has almost completely dissolved into aluminium oxide.

Anyone know where a replacement can be made up, using information from the log book ?

:)
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PostPost by: RichardS » Sat May 13, 2023 4:19 pm

Sue Miller has had “commission plates” listed under Engine Bay in her catalogue.
A local engraver such as Timpsons should be able to fill in the details for you.
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PostPost by: berni29 » Sat May 13, 2023 8:41 pm

Hi

Looks like one I bought recently. Best of luck with her!

Berni
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PostPost by: Foxie » Sat May 13, 2023 10:50 pm

Thanks for the replies !

I'll follow up with Sue !

:)
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PostPost by: Foxie » Fri May 26, 2023 1:15 pm

Well I contacted Sue Miller and I now have a shiny new blank VIN plate for my restoration 68 Plus 2, pic attached.

The plate has 3 number spaces to be engraved, 1 Unit No., 2 Engine No., and 3 Alt Unit No.

This is different from the VIN plate on my running Plus 2, pic attached, which does not have the "Alt Unit No. " space.

Instead, this plate has "TYPE 50" engraved in the top right margin.

What does "ALT UNIT No. " actually mean ? Is this the space for "TYPE 50"

Thanks,

Foxie :)
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PostPost by: 661 » Fri May 26, 2023 3:18 pm

Foxie wrote:The VIN plate on this1968 Plus 2 basket case restoration has almost completely dissolved into aluminium oxide.

Anyone know where a replacement can be made up, using information from the log book ?

:)

Do keep the original
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PostPost by: andyelan » Sat May 27, 2023 1:47 pm

Hi there

The plate you've bought is the same as that on my '73 130S/5, I don't know if it's correct for a '68 car. Whatever, on my plate "Alt Unit No." is indeed where "TYPE 50" is stamped.

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Andy
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PostPost by: Foxie » Sat May 27, 2023 10:35 pm

Hi Andy,

Thanks for that.

My log book for this car is currently at my local motor tax office, who are being helpful in updating their lapsed records since 1978 !

Every little helps.

:)
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PostPost by: Foxie » Tue May 30, 2023 12:04 am

661 wrote:Do keep the original


Is there any particular reason to keep the original ?

I know chemical etching can "develop" for example ground-off engine numbers from stampimg deformation in the underlying metal, but is it possible on a flimsy aluminium 55 year old VIN plate ? :shock:
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PostPost by: jono » Tue May 30, 2023 8:23 am

Foxie,

I'm also doing a '68 Plus 2 and have been through the same process.

I looked long and hard for the 'correct' plate and the SJ Sportcars version was right for the age of car (and is different to the blank shown in you post). The only engraving is for type and unit number in the top left hand box, in my case 50/0837. My car is June 68 if that makes any difference.

I attach a pic of my old plate in case it helps.

Jon
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Tue May 30, 2023 8:47 am

Hi Foxie,
You need to keep the old plate in order to show and confirm why it has a new plate on.
Remember you are only the present owner of the car and one day it will be sold on.
Eric in Burnley
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PostPost by: 661 » Wed May 31, 2023 10:11 am

ericbushby wrote:Hi Foxie,
You need to keep the old plate in order to show and confirm why it has a new plate on.
Remember you are only the present owner of the car and one day it will be sold on.
Eric in Burnley
1967 S3SE DHC

Agreed
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PostPost by: Foxie » Wed May 31, 2023 12:41 pm

ericbushby wrote:Hi Foxie,
You need to keep the old plate in order to show and confirm why it has a new plate on.
Remember you are only the present owner of the car and one day it will be sold on.
Eric in Burnley
1967 S3SE DHC


Yes, that makes good sense.

With the subtle reminder of the Grim Reaper, I suppose we may consider ourselves "Guardians of the Flame" !

The good news is that after carefully removing the original VIN plate and soaking it in vinegar for a day now, I was amazed to see the the corrosion is not the plate itself dissolving, but a thin layer of what looks like a lime deposit. This is gradually flaking off to reveal the almost perfect original marking.

That is progress !

:)
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