Lotus Elan

Heater fan bush housing / heater box renovation

PostPost by: JonB » Mon Sep 09, 2019 1:19 pm

Yes, they look OK. 47 years old too!

So I am approaching the end of this particular odyssey, most of which was spent waiting for the foam to arrive. Just got to whack it all back together now and stuff it in the car, then I can get on with the dashboard..
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:15 pm

Oh hell, here we go again.

The hot / cold flap lever on my heater box had already been welded together once, but on reassembly it snapped in two! Out with the welder, but as the metal is some sort of cast crap, it's not a strong repair.

img_5953.jpg and
Bodge & hack


So naturally, when I tried to reassemble it, tapping it onto the flap splines, the inevitable happened.

img_5954.jpg and
[insert expletive here]


Questions, then:
  • Best way to fix this? Or fabricate something in its place?
  • Alternatively, has anyone got a spare?

Cheers
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PostPost by: oldelanman » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:55 pm

[quote="JonB" Just got to whack it all back together now and stuff it in the car .......[/quote] :roll: :roll:

SJ Sportscars list both levers....

https://www.sjsportscars.com/parts-and- ... /SJ901.htm

https://www.sjsportscars.com/parts-and- ... /SJ902.htm
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:04 pm

Nice to know.. but ?42!! Taking the mick!
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:06 pm

oldelanman wrote:
JonB wrote: Just got to whack it all back together now and stuff it in the car .......
:roll: :roll:


No, no - a figure of speech only. No need to roll your eyes. I was quite gentle, but because it'd been welded once before it was weak.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:09 pm

Blxxdy hell - they're not cheap but they'll get the car working again.
This is the sort of thing that 3D printing should bring down in price.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:17 pm

Back to the question - if there's room you may be able to bond a thin plate on the back - perhaps using low temperature alloy welding kit such as this

https://www.machinemart.co.uk/p/alumini ... arter-kit/

With the benefit of hindsight that might have been easier before!
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:11 pm

Hi Mark

Are the levers aluminium then? I thought they were pot metal, sort of crap used to make die cast toys with.

If so, oh dear... but I've done a bit of research on this Laser HTS 2000 aluminium braising rod and it looks like it could be a way out. Just ordered some rods and we'll see how it works. I might have to grind all the MIG welding wire remnants off the pieces first as the rod metal won't bond to steel. Apparently you can also sort of build up a casting with it given a former made of sheet steel. So I could make a sort of bath up, put the splined hole at one end and the pin at the other, then just fill the gap with brazing rod.

Will report on how it goes. If the lever gets zapped at least I tried - and will cough up for a new one!

Cheers all
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PostPost by: JohnP » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:13 pm

JonB wrote:Nice to know.. but ?42!! Taking the mick!


Jon,

I have no affiliation with SJS but I can't stop myself from intervening here. I really don't think anyone is making a fortune out of stocking and sourcing spares for our cars, and even if they were, they would deserve it.

Making the effort to source, purchase, stock and have a sales chain for this kind of thing costs time and investment.

I don't think they are "taking the mikey" at all.

good luck spending time fixing it yourself :D
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Sep 09, 2019 7:59 pm

We will see how the repair goes!

I think it is expensive given that it?s such a small and non complex part. On the other hand I doubt they sell many. And yes, I understand your point.
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PostPost by: JonB » Fri Sep 13, 2019 12:14 pm

Quick report on the lever repair.



img_5980.jpg and
HTS2000 rods and tinning brush at the ready. ?11.


img_5984.jpg and
Trial with HTS2000 and some scrap aluminium. It's a simple join and even whacking with a hammer wouldn't dislodge it. So - under ideal conditions - the stuff seems to work.


img_5985.jpg and
Offering up the halves of the lever on a piece of steel plate. They're ground so we have clean mating faces


img_5986.jpg and
Clamped in position and brazing attempted.


img_5987.jpg and
That's when I found the levers are made of something with a lot of lead in it. Melted before the rod did, like solder.


So that's ?11 down the pan. Next stop, SJS...

[Edit: So, with VAT and postage it's ?49. I think that is quite excessive, but I've paid it anyway.]
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PostPost by: seriouslylotus » Fri Sep 13, 2019 1:22 pm

JohnP wrote:
JonB wrote:Nice to know.. but ?42!! Taking the mick!


Jon,

I have no affiliation with SJS but I can't stop myself from intervening here. I really don't think anyone is making a fortune out of stocking and sourcing spares for our cars, and even if they were, they would deserve it.

Making the effort to source, purchase, stock and have a sales chain for this kind of thing costs time and investment.

I don't think they are "taking the mikey" at all.

good luck spending time fixing it yourself :D

This,.........
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Fri Sep 13, 2019 2:46 pm

Sorry to hear it didn't work out.
At least you've now got something to 'weld' aluminium.
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PostPost by: JonB » Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:14 pm

Indeed. It may come in handy to fix the thermostat cover bolt hole, so maybe not a complete waste of money. Thanks for the recommendation.

@seriouslylotus : not a helpful comment. At least I tried to repair it...
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PostPost by: seriouslylotus » Fri Sep 13, 2019 4:21 pm

JonB wrote:Indeed. It may come in handy to fix the thermostat cover bolt hole, so maybe not a complete waste of money. Thanks for the recommendation.

@seriouslylotus : not a helpful comment. At least I tried to repair it...

Really? Looking at the pictures the part was way past its best.
I would NOT put parts like that back on my car ever. But im clearly a minority and will stop posting. I do apologise ,good bye
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