Lotus Elan

Please Introduce your self and welcome to LotusElan.net

PostPost by: adigra » Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:59 am

I really enjoyed reading the posts in this thread.

My name is Adi Granov. I was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia (former Yugoslavia). Left there in '95 with my family after we had had enough of the war, and went in search of a better life in the US. After a decade there, having met and married an English girl, I moved to Yorkshire. I am an illustrator and designer and I work mostly with Marvel Entertainment. My most prominent work has been designing Iron Man for the movie which came out last year (as well as its sequel out next year).

I've always been interested in everything mechanical, but classic cars in particular became an obsession when I was given my first ride in a muscle car, a '71 Mustang Mach1. While in the States I owned a '68 Oldsmobile 442, which was great fun, but really a pretty awful car to drive. Drove it from Seattle to LA once and at 8mpg it nearly bankrupted me.

My wife's father is one of the biggest petrolheads the world has ever seen and he has really become my guide and cohort with all things on wheels. He is a big AC man, but having completed the Ace he was working on at the time he was looking for a new project. We went to a salvage auction to look at a Daimler Dart and returned home with a crashed Sprint instead. Driving that Sprint convinced me that I had to have an Elan. It was simply the loveliest car I had ever driven. I decided I wanted a coupe, and after reading an interview with Gordon Murray, I decided it had to be an S3. It's a work in progress, but the ownership so far has been an absolute joy. Since bringing it home I've tried to complete at least a couple of jobs ever week, the sense of accomplishment has become incredibly addictive. This forum and website have been an incredible source of information and I've been logging on almost every day just soaking up as much information as possible.

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PostPost by: Tonyw » Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:03 pm

Hi all,

Tony Warner 58, almost 59, born in the UK and came to Australia in 1970, before I left the UK I worked at the local garage and aided in assembling a couple of Elans when they were in kit form, I remember how beautiful I thought they were, I did an apprenticeship as a mechanic until my #4 lumbar joint decided I had better find an alternative occupation. Spent most of my mechanical working life on Caterpillar machines but never lost my appetite for cars and bikes, Ford Customline, Mustang, Triumph TR6, all manner of bikes overtime from oil burners to rice burners. Had a whisper of an Elan back in 2002 and followed up on it, owned by a Doctor who had more projects than patients ended up buying it of him. A S3 DHC love doing all of the work myself I will retire on June 30th 2011 when I will finish the car if I have not already done so.

I almost always check this site out everyday and I can honestly say it has been the most informative site I have come across to date. Gary, Mark Rohan and other regular posters provide so much information and are so helpful I know I find the whole thing so useful and versatile, i can ask a question one minute and most often get a reply in a very short space of time.

I also really enjoy some of the humour and good hearted banter, not sure what the Hamster this is about, or the Morris dancers.

I know some people tire of being involved with boards such as this one, questions can get repetitive, new listers ask questions without looking first (I know I have done this) some people can get a tad prickly but wtf....we need our uni legged dog owning ugly flair members.... without them this board would be boring...

Tony
Second childhood? no just an extension of my first.
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PostPost by: SADLOTUS » Sun Sep 27, 2009 8:28 pm

Hi all, my name's Paul Sewell, born in '58 makes me 51. Had a good range of heaps over the years - still have so no change there - would help my dad with his Austin 1100, Minis, Capris, Austin Cambridge a Midget, a Spitfire and various others I can?t remember. Helped with engine changes and brake changes, but mostly remember up-down-up-down-holdit-up-rigmarole of bleeding the brakes! Always a skinflint the cars were held together with top (bottom) class bodges - again, no change there then.

Passed my car and bike test on the same day and inherited another (t)rusty Austin 1100 - til the subframe really let go! On through various cars, Cortina being a favourite - crossply tyres, dodgy top suspension mounts and wibblywobbly steering made exciting driving through the width barriers! Got myself a Peerless GT with a rotten bonded in chassis for ?200 - drove that for a while with no MOT til my nerve ran out. Then came another favourite, a Ford Zephyr Farnham Estate, four in the back and three on the front bench seat, column gear change and a six foot three loading space if you needed it - a party fave. Bought a Chevy Corvair, flat six rear engine, fold down pillarless windows, wet look gloss blue upholstery and the vaguest gearbox ever - all for ?50... age 19 and NO ONE would insure me! ...so...became a great field car...and sold it for ?150 with no keys.

Sitting with my dad in traffic in something or other we saw an Elan go past - 'That's what I'm getting next.' - sold the Zephyr, borrowed ?1000 and bought the first Elan I saw (I know, I know!), cost: ?1800. Broke down three times on the way home, not one wheel pointed in the same direction as any other, one rear shock was NFG as was one front chassis turret - that wasn't a problem, had that welded with a bit of galvanised plate and at the same time created my own special geometry - so much so, that a chap came up to me at a Goodwood track day to ask what camber and settings I was running, needless to say he turned on his heel when he looked underneath...(tehe)

Buying the Elan coincided with getting my first job, paste up artist with a local studio doing Jaguar Driver Club magazine, Assistant Librarian(!), Sterile World Magazine(!) and other great reads. Eventually my boss set up Practical Classics, a very tiring and stressful time, lots of free contributions in Staff Car Sagas and driving around taking pictures of cars in bits and various stages of rustyness.

I still have the book I started to keep on how much I was spending on the Elan but stopped after a year because it was so depressing. That seems to coincide with the chassis adjustment I made against two kerbs on opposite sides of the road. New Spyder chassis followed. Wheels refurbed at Weller Wheels (four months!). New top end at Baldynes (engine blunders ? sorry, builders). Respray by friend who owed me money (mistake).

Now paste up for Custom Car, Superbike and Car and Car Conversions, no freebies there though. Did make friends with Russell Bulgin who was larger than life, literally and metaphorically.

Gradually, as the paint cracked off and the engine became rougher, as the hood became patchier and destinations became more unpredictable, I got to know the component parts on a personal basis. Parked on the street it became a graffitistas canvas, a supplier of tax discs for the locals and more than once I had a council ?Abandoned Car? sticker on it.

Now with The Daily Telegraph, still working with pictures ? paste up has l..o..n..g gone, all Photoshop, spoolers and servers now.

Strange how much time and contemplation a divorce brings. This time, I?ll build it how I want it with patience and care, adding things here and there to make it a little bit more liveable with. I asked my 13 year old son shall I just get rid of the car and get a Renault V6 or Scooby?? (A rhetorical question of course). ?No! Dad!? (Correct answer of course). I think he has an eye on the future?.and why not eh?

It?s still thrashed, not so trashed. It?s nice to tinker without having to fix things before you can tinker with things. It?s strange how there?s no malice towards the car, people smile and say ?nice car? without any underlying nastiness, and it can still give most things a good run for their money.

Er? what was the question? Who am I?

Thankful for the internet and LotusEeelaaan.com (Jay Leno pronunciation)?
Darn right I am!
Find it funny that people like to have a dig at each other? Whoah! Chill man, why so serious?
Attachments
elan4.jpg and
That's the way to do it...not.
Yes, he's still a tosser.
elan3.jpg and
One thing led to another.
elan2.jpg and
Lonely days, just me and a chassis. The wire is for the electric drill - drops down from my 4th floor flat.
Elan1.jpg and
How I spent my youth
Last edited by SADLOTUS on Wed Sep 30, 2009 12:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: ftsoft » Mon Sep 28, 2009 3:07 pm

Hello to all

My name is Frank Cooley. I currently live in West Central Ohio, USA. I'm the original owner of a 1966 Lotus Elan S2. I raced the car in SCCA C production for the Mohawk-Hudson Region in the late 60's as a relatively stock elan. I was blown away by the prepared C cars but did pretty well against the E cars. I also was very successful in Auto crosses in the New York, Massachusetts areas, taking second overall at the 1968 INEC event in Greene, NY.

The car has been driven sparingly since 1975 and I am currently working to get it mechanically sound with the goal of doing a mild restoration. The car runs well, but needs a new water pump and a thorough going over.
Attachments
DSCN1199_elanonstands.jpg and
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66 S2 26/5194
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PostPost by: dusty » Mon Sep 28, 2009 3:24 pm

What a superb picture, dare I ask what the string/rope was doing?

Image
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PostPost by: david.g.chapman » Tue Sep 29, 2009 11:30 am

Hi everyone!

My name is my "handle" so that's out of the way. I am 55 now, and have have my +2 for 9 years. I has been fun, and I have come up with some strange ideas over that time to keep my car going. You only have to look at my old posts. People of a nervous disposition look away now :shock:

My biggest issue has been breaking piston rings. I made the mistake of following a manufacturers advice and fitted some Teves rings into old pistons with a ring to piston gap of 6 thou. They lasted only 10000 miles before breaking again after having worn thin! I then replaced the pistons and fitted new rings with a gap of 2 thou - fingers still crossed...

Dave Chapman.
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PostPost by: tdafforn » Tue Sep 29, 2009 4:21 pm

My Name is Tim Dafforn, University lecturer in Biochemistry in Birmingham....
One of the few biologists around who like cars..
Started with my second car, a triumph spitfire 1500 in 1992. Disolved around me.. learnt to weld and rebuilt it..
Arrival of two kids, out goes the spitfire in comes the +2, lots of renovation rather than rebuilding.. Quite like keeping the patina..
wouldn?t have been able to do it without LotusElan.net..
Always sad when there are bust ups.. Loss of Keith Frank and his ideas on Carburettors was a shame!
Now embarking on an MG midget rebuild... more welding!
Tim
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PostPost by: TeeJay » Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:03 pm

Hello All.
I am called TJ by my family & friends, short for Trevor John, hence my handle ?TeeJay?.
At the end of Feb 2010 I will be of official UK retirement age, but I have been retired from full time employment for 4 years.

After completing my 5 year engineering apprenticeship with ICI, I first went into Work Study, mainly method improvement, then into manual programming of CNC machines. This company was early into CNC M/Cs, to avoid any skills shortage and to reduce costs. I ended up at this company being responsible for an Aircraft component supply department, which had Machine, Assembly, Test & Despatch shops. A great resource for the many odd Lotus jobs.
Also during this period, as a qualified engineer, I was very active on the committees of the Institution of Production Engineers, attending Local, Regional and Head Office meetings. I also arranged works visits and Technical lectures. (Hope this partially explains the many layers of dust on the +2) :roll:

My first car was an early Ford Popular 100E which I completely restored, only on completion to be trashed by local yobs. :evil:
Then a Ford Angular, Triumph Vitess, Mini and several more.

I have owned my 1968 Elan+2 since 1975 some 34 years.
My first long trip in the +2, with wife and 2 young sons was from Stafford to Tenby. Travelling south down the recently opened M6, I was surprised by almost all of the cars in front pulling over to let me pass. Boy did this massively increase my ?pride of ownership?. :lol:
Regretfully this is not the case today, aggressive ?I?m faster than you? youths and an M6 often a car park in my locality. :twisted:

A year after purchase I removed the engine for a full strip, check, and rebuild. Glad I had the Workshop Manual and Miles Twink book, regrettably no LotusElan.net in those days.

In 1989 after 14years of ownership, the chassis failed, so I removed it and purchased a new Lotus galvanised one.
It?s been in that state ever since, until I started a complete rebuild project in June 2007. See above re work commitment & other activities, also my 2 sons had their first cars which forever needed my involvement. So the Elan waited & waited.
I have now completed the rolling chassis and have just started to strip all the paint of the body. I hate this task, slow dirty, red dust every where.
But my mission on retirement was to complete as much of the rebuild project single handed as possible.
Many times I have thought that I should have had the work completed by specialists as I have had little time for my other interests. But when I have completed a particular task, e.g. removal & replacement of the valve seats and guides, the low is replaced by a high.
I also get re energised when I see other forum member?s photos of their completed work. Keep posting friends.

LotusElan.net is a great forum, and I thank all those that constructively contribute and in particular the expert/experienced more prolific senior members.
Also the lighter fun moments of some members which helps me over my too often serious mind.

Gary, if you read this, then I confess I have never said so much about myself before other than at 2 job interviews. Great topic.
Trevor
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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:37 pm

I want thank each and every one that has stepped up and said hello and this is who I am. Everyones involvemment makes this a great way to meet people that for what ever reason we don't normally have the opertunity to do. There are great distances involved in most cases but each and every one of us has a real life that needs attending to first, at the end of the day (or the beginning) we have a chance to see what others have done and communicate with others that enjoy the passion of Elan ownership. Some only briefly, others its a life long obsession (addiction?) but we still enjoy all things Lotus together...

Thank You All Again

Gary
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PostPost by: tcsoar » Fri Oct 02, 2009 9:31 pm

Hi,

I am Chris Soar, the tc in my handle is actualy my wifes intials and it seemed to fit here :D
Left school at sixteen and joined a very large telecoms co. as an engineering apprentice, I am now 46. I always had a passion for pulling things apart and putting them back together again.
I loved playing with cars as soon as I could afford one, had several cortina mk1's (not lotus's though), MG's and a Triumph Dolomite in the past.
I am now restoring a plus 2s, well I have been for the last 19 years, (tip number 1, Never buy a restoration project as your partner announces shes preggie with your first child ) :shock:
Anyhow, I was a lurker :evil: on this site for several years before I joined, and it has to be the best site around for a good mix of informed knowledge and light hearted banter.

All the best to every one out there,

Chris.
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Sat Oct 03, 2009 8:15 am

Chris

I hope that it's not the same company as mine (initials of BT?),because I'm on my way out (and am I glad)

John :wink:
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PostPost by: elj221c » Sat Oct 03, 2009 6:49 pm

John,

I think that should be a completely different thread. We mustn't highjack Gary's , but briefly, I left exactly a year ago.

Enjoy!

Roy
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PostPost by: tcsoar » Mon Oct 05, 2009 10:30 pm

John, Roy,

Yep, same one.
Good luck to you Roy, and well done John for jumping ship at a good time.
Me, I'm still rolling along, taking s**t from the higher managment, waiting to be dumped out :evil:

Oh and sorry to Gary for drifting off topic!!

Chris.
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PostPost by: garyeanderson » Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:03 pm

tcsoar wrote:John, Roy,

Yep, same one.
Good luck to you Roy, and well done John for jumping ship at a good time.
Me, I'm still rolling along, taking s**t from the higher managment, waiting to be dumped out :evil:

Oh and sorry to Gary for drifting off topic!!

Chris.


Yes thats life in the 21st century, get used until the management figures they can get the work done for less or not needed to be done at all. It sucks but theres not much to do about it but leave before it happens. There is no one that can not be replaced for less money. They may not get the same quality, performance or quanity but thats not the point. It's the money.


Gary
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PostPost by: petervs » Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:44 pm

Hi All,
I live in Patterson Lakes in Melbourne, Oz. About to hit the big 5-0 in a month. I started my working life at Bolwell cars laminating body shells and now run a boat repair business at the local marina. For those unaware of Bolwell they were a local company who built a few sports cars that were very similar in concept to an Elan. The founder worked at Lotus for some time in the sixties and upon return to Oz started building his own cars. The most popular was the Nagari which was a 'glass body over a steel backbone chassis with Ford Falcon running gear including 302 or 351 V8's. The unfortunate thing was that they never got close to Lotus handling characteristics. Great in a straight line on good surfaces but scary as hell any where else.
I currently own 2 Twin Cam Escorts, a '72 Elan Sprint, several bikes, a few boats and various other toys. I tarmac rallied one of the Twin Cams up until 2 years ago and now drive my co-drivers RS 1600 in tarmac rallies. Well I did up until February when we had a slight argument with a tree. Flat out in top gear, got a bad call on what was called as a flat right into flat left which turned out to be flat right into hairpin left. Oops. Car is being rebuilt know.
I have restored and modified several lotus bodies for customers over the years and have always lusted over an Elan for myself. I once did a body resto on a s4 fhc which included coverting it to a dhc. 3 years later the car was sold and ended up back in my workshop to be modified as a track car. The owner wanted 26R guards fitted and wanted to know if it was possible to convert it to a fhc. He had know idea it was originally a fhc. Luckily I had kept the roof from the earlier conversion.
I bought my Sprint already beautifully restored. It is very original and dead standard down to a generator and 8 track stereo. Love it but dont get anywhere enough time to enjoy it. Probably only did about a thousand miles last year.
The Escorts get driven even less.
Cheers Peter.

2 x Twin Cam Escorts
1 x 72 Sprint
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