Lotus Elan

RIP Dave Bean

PostPost by: SJ Lambert » Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:22 am

Dave was definitely a Prince amongst Men, always a pleasure to talk to over the phone cheerfully able to source the most obscure parts (like genuine Holbay long rods !) - there's Bean Supplied Bits in 3 of my 4 race motors.

Dave has a pretty large "fan base" here in Australia.

My condolences to his family, friends & workmates.
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PostPost by: lotocone » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:37 pm

Dave answered the phone a few times when I needed parts.? That's the only contact I had with him, but I remember that some of the things he said made me laugh out loud. ? He sure seemed to have a great sense of humor that even popped up in his Parts Book.

When he got my address, he mentioned that he had been in my area near Detroit in the 60s to drive a Pontiac GTO and write a review.? I think he wrote for Car Life magazine. ? Can anyone confirm that ??

Rest in Peace Dave Bean.
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PostPost by: Ross Robbins » Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:18 am

Attached is the obituary provided by his wife Roberta.

David Ray Bean (Dave), Mountain Ranch, CA was born April 18, 1939, in Belle Fourche, SD, to George Burdette and Violet Margareet (Tope) Bean. They were cattle ranchers, and he learned at an early age to ride horses. Theirs was a minimal existence with no running water, no electricity, and certainly no telephone. He attended country schools and boarded in town for high school. He succumbed to a massive heart attack at home Sunday, August 13.

He attended the University of Wyoming, Laramie, earning his Bachelor?s Degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1962. The lure of automobile racing drew him to California soon after, and he spent the next 50+ years participating in the sport at both professional and amateur levels.

While his first love was the Corvette, he was drawn to the handling and light weight of the Lotus cars. The necessity of obtaining parts for the low production Lotus led to his starting his own business importing parts from the UK and re-selling them to Lotus owners in the US. Dave Bean Engineering was founded in1975 and continues today in San Andreas.

He was known worldwide for his expertise and his skill behind the wheel of a race car. He was predeceased by his parents, his sister Betty Ann (Bean) Lovell, and his brother, George Burdette Bean, Jr. He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Roberta, his sister Doris Virginia Paulson (Mel) of Eagle Rock, many nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews in scattered areas around the country, and his beloved Black Lab, Jimbo.

Interment will be at a later date at Pine Slope Cemetery in Belle Fourche.

Godspeed Dave.
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PostPost by: nomad » Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:40 am

I wish I had met him. A fellow South Dakotan who grew up in an area [Belle Fourche] and business [ranching] I'm very familiar with. I had no idea.

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PostPost by: Elan45 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:49 am

I only met Dave a few times, usually at Lotus Ltd. LOGs, or possibly at a vintage race. Its been a while since I've seen him, so this news comes as a great shock.Just a few years ago we were all praying that Roberta would have the strength to beat her cancer.

I'm typing this from my motel room in Salinis, where we are staying while running my Lotus 20/22 FJr at Monterey Historics. I was hoping to be able to visit w/ Dave and Roberta and perhaps Tommy Smith, but now I see that won't happen.

RIP Dave Bean

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PostPost by: vstibbard » Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:07 pm

My condolences to Dave's family and the team at DBE.

I've known Dave since the early 1980's initially through calls then regular emails to work out what I needed, his parts catalog's always a source relied upon, when asked Dave shared his knowledge openly and I've enjoyed the results of his set ups tips and parts on all the Elan's I've owned and restored and most recently my Super Seven, wobbly webs, rebuilding and waiting patiently for his roller rockers to become available.

Keen to see the man behind the advice I travelled from Australia to meet with Dave and experience the amazing countryside he so fondly talked of, two days talking about the merits of this and that, I came away with many interesting stories of his 26R days, happily placed an order with Dave for the TTR parts to rebuild my 26R, the many tips he shared were invaluable when restoring it.

I know Dave's legacy and love for all things Lotus will carry on for many years to come for his contribution extends across the world, I hope his family and team find some solace in the many kind words written here and words shared.

Last edited by vstibbard on Sat Aug 19, 2017 11:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: loueelotus » Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:12 pm

I am saddened to hear that he has passed away. He helped me when no one else could. A very knowledgeable man.
My condolences to the family and the team at DBE.
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