Lotus Elan

New Plus 2 Owner

PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:03 am

Hello all,

Hoping to proceed with the purchase of a 1970 Plus 2 I saw locally at the weekend. I am in Abingdon, Oxfordshire.

The car looks very good, having had a full strip down (but not body off) treatment and respray a couple of years ago. The interior looks good too. I will be buying it subject to a drive (fuel pump was being rebuilt when i viewed it) and getting it on a ramp to check underneath,

The main concern, is that it is thought to be on the original chassis, although early history is not known. the car has passed all recent MOTs and is currently MOTd until the end of the year but I know that is not a reliable indicator.

Any tips on what and where to look whilst it is up in the air would be very much appreciated.

Looking forward to becoming an active member on the forum - of course, I'll need your help :)

Andy
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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PostPost by: sprintsoft » Mon Feb 17, 2020 12:50 pm

Hi Andy,

If the car has been dry stored for a large part of its history it's possible the chassis is intact, however if its done high mileage on UK roads over the 50 years I would be wary.

The problems around an old chassis are well documented, this thread for instance has a lot of good info around buying an original chassis car:
https://lotuselan.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=33310&start=

... and see if you can check the chassis number:
https://lotuselan.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=51&t=29424&start=

The finish on the original chassis should be red oxide, if it was replaced then it most likely would be galvanised, but just to add to the fun some replacements were not galvanised.

Regards
Iain
72 Sprint - 0363E
74 S130/5 - 1931L
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:01 pm

Thanks Iain,

Great info, I'll check those threads out. The car has done less than 60k miles (thought to be genuine, but who knows). it certainly looks like it has had an easy life but I'll find out a bit more when I can get it up in the air.

It was the subject of TV resto show a couple of years back, so there is some recent documented history.

will elaborate later, if anyone is interested.

Cheers,
Andy
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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PostPost by: sprintsoft » Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:37 pm

Andy, of course if it’s an Elan then please elaborate!

I don’t recall a tv resto on a Plus 2. Car SOS and Wheeler Dealers both did the small Elan a while back.

Don’t be shy to post some pics, there’s a lot of very knowledgeable members on here, and you may find someone that knows your car or even a previous owner.

Good luck!
Iain
72 Sprint - 0363E
74 S130/5 - 1931L
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:00 pm

Iain,

it was featured in one of the very first (if not the first) episodes of 'Salvage Hunters - Classic Cars" Around the end of 2017. I bought the episode to watch in HD (£2.50, well spent!) and it portays the car as being very tidy mechanically, but needing some bodywork and re-chroming.

it was Carnival red, now Glacier Blue. It went to a fibreglass specialist for stripping , repairing and re-painting. It has hardly turned a wheel since according to MOT history and looks great. Just need to check the chassis out.

Of course you have to take these TV shows for what they are - entertainment. They have something they want to portray, that will differentiate them from all the other similar shows, so you won't get the kind of detailed analysis a future purchaser would hope for. This program likes to feature some 'artisan' workshops, hence a lot of the focus was on the fibreglass bodywork and re-chroming.

that said, I'm hoping it turns out to be what it appears - an honest car.

Cheers,
Andy
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:07 pm

There was a restoration done on a +2 a few years back. It was sprayed by Option One in metallic blue IIRC, for a bargain price.

Ah, it was Salvage Hunters: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9psBsPDDqxg and the car was KOO 38J

This one, in fact... https://www.carandclassic.co.uk/car/C930658

Anyway, welcome to the forum!
Early 1973 Elan Plus 2S 130/5 - UK - Unit 50/1115L
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:13 pm

JonB wrote:There was a restoration done on a +2 a few years back. It was sprayed by Option One in metallic blue IIRC, for a bargain price.

Ah, it was Salvage Hunters: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9psBsPDDqxg


Yep, although the price quoted in the program wasn't the actual price paid for the respray - that was a price for TV to make it seem like they could make a profit.
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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PostPost by: JonB » Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:27 pm

I thought as much - too good to be true. Option One respray is about £10k so I heard.

Thing is about your car, with a quality paint job already done, the rest of it can be tackled pretty much by the hobbyist. In other words, I think you're in a good place, unless you paid too much for it.

To your original question: Look for rust in the front turret box sections at the the bottom. Dirt can get trapped in there and hold moisture to the metal, accelerating rot. A symptom of which is often seen when the headlights don't stay down (on failsafe models) or up (on non failsafe models) when the engine is off.
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:52 pm

Thank guys, extremely helpful. I think I’m going to like it here!

I’ll let you know what I find when I’ve had another look.

Cheers
Andy
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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PostPost by: PaulH » Mon Feb 17, 2020 7:31 pm

Andy Hamblin wrote:Hello all,

Hoping to proceed with the purchase of a 1970 Plus 2 I saw locally at the weekend. I am in Abingdon, Oxfordshire.

The car looks very good, having had a full strip down (but not body off) treatment and respray a couple of years ago. The interior looks good too. I will be buying it subject to a drive (fuel pump was being rebuilt when i viewed it) and getting it on a ramp to check underneath,

The main concern, is that it is thought to be on the original chassis, although early history is not known. the car has passed all recent MOTs and is currently MOTd until the end of the year but I know that is not a reliable indicator.

Any tips on what and where to look whilst it is up in the air would be very much appreciated.

Looking forward to becoming an active member on the forum - of course, I'll need your help :)

Andy


Hi Andy,
I've posted a video on YouTube showing some of the chassis details of an Elan which is a very similar design to the Elan +2. I've shown a couple of failure points: the engine mounts at 9:00, and the front turrets at 9:37. Might be helpful to you.
https://youtu.be/Ar5ynxMKYU0
Paul
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 7:38 pm

That is really useful Paul, many thanks. I'll take a good look. Thank goodness for people that do things like this to help others!

Andy
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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PostPost by: wotsisname » Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:43 pm

Welcome.
The big money goes on the body/paint and engine if a twincam. Chassis has been mentioned. condition of the wiring can be a big thing as that where a lot of problems arise.
Otherwise anything missing particularly trim and interior ?
while in the air, as you mentioned. straight rear wishbones with good bushes. loose torque rods on the diff ? significant oil leaks ? front uprights and trunnions. general appearance. then.. do all the electrics work

Cheers
1968 Elan plus 2 - project
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:03 pm

The paint and bodywork look new as you would expect 2 years after a strip, repair and repaint. Both bumpers and some smaller items have been re-chromed, the remaining chrome has a patina but is otherwise sound. Wheels have been refurbished and look good. Visually inside and out it looks great.

The car had its fuel pump out for a rebuild when I viewed it so I couldn’t check the engine or electrics. All interior trim is present and very presentable except missing boot trim & carpet although that did allow me to see that a new aluminium fuel tank has been fitted. I also noted a custom aluminium radiator. The engine bay looks generally clean and well cared for.

I think I checked everything I could with the car on the floor and not running. Next trip will be to check all the points mentioned here when it’s up in the air and of course a drive.

Thank you very much guys, it’s looking promising. Hope what I haven’t seen is as good as what I have seen. Time will tell.
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
Andy Hamblin
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PostPost by: Craven » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:06 pm

Unless I’ve missed it but you +2 guys don’t seem to have mentioned the sills, lots on here about them.
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PostPost by: Andy Hamblin » Mon Feb 17, 2020 11:09 pm

Craven wrote:Unless I’ve missed it but you +2 guys don’t seem to have mentioned the sills, lots on here about them.


Thanks, will research and add to the list of things to check.
Sept 1970 Plus 2S, KOO38J Glacier Blue, 50/2432 (was Carnival Red)
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