Lotus Elan

My new project

PostPost by: dusty » Sun Apr 01, 2007 7:48 pm

Last friday I bought a 1968 Plus 2 in need of complete restoration, the previous owner had started the job but run out of time and is now moving to a house without a garage so had to sell. He had seperated the body, removed the engine and renovated the chassis. To transport it we had to put the body back on the chassis and the rest of the parts into boxes.

It will be a long term project for me around 3 years I think. Anyway I sure I'll become a frequent visitor here!

Some pictures

In the previous owners garage.

Image

Image

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Ready for the move

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Back at my house

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What have I done!

Cheers
Jon
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PostPost by: chrishewett » Sun Apr 01, 2007 9:33 pm

What have I done!
The best thing!
Started from scratch, the opposite of what I did. With the help of the experience of this forum on your side you will end up with a great car.
Good luck.
Chris
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PostPost by: RobCapper » Sun Apr 01, 2007 9:54 pm

is it just me, or does anyone else (when seeing a resoration project being wheeled into an empy garage) think of nothing but Dick Van Dyke wheeling chitty chitty bang bang into his shed?! :lol:
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PostPost by: b-havers » Mon Apr 02, 2007 8:16 am

Congratulation!
the +2 is a fantastic car - when it runs...

I've been thru a complete restoration of a 1970 Europa S2. Was supposed to take three years, has taken 8 years so far...

Keep a smile in your head, when finished the car will give you lots of pleasure!
Bjorn-Anders, Norway
'95 Caterham Seven Roadsport
'02 Elise Supercharged
ex Europa S2
ex Elan +2S 130
ex Esprit Turbo
ex Caterham SS

Life is too short to drive boring cars
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Mon Apr 02, 2007 9:51 am

Good for you, Dusty, it's pleasing to see another Plus 2 being restored rather than ending up on eBay in component form. Especially a nice early car...getting pretty rare these days. What was the original colour of the car?

The comments from the others are spot on...go through the whole car and you will have a reliable, fast and stunning looking car that will give you years of fun to do, and many more years of driving pleasure.

Get the workshop manual and parts list if you haven't already got them, and the Ross / Robinshaw book describing the development of the Elan and Elan Plus 2.

You're going to have a load of fun :D
Mark
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PostPost by: dusty » Mon Apr 02, 2007 12:16 pm

Elanintheforest wrote: What was the original colour of the car?

Mark


Lotus couldn't tell me the original colour, apparently they didn't keep those records until 1970.

They could tell me it left the production line on 31st march 1968 and the selling dealer was Ian Walker Ltd.

The previous owner has stripped of some of the paint and it looks like it has been many colours during it life including black and pistacio! However i think the original colour is either French blue, or Wedgewood, I'll post a picture and you can tell me what you think.

Jon
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PostPost by: Lotus fan » Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:24 pm

I'm into my 7th year on my Plus 2 restoration :shock: But I blame buying and running an Esprit for 2 years for extending my resto !!! :wink:
The Esprit's gone now so now I can finish my Plus 2 :D
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PostPost by: gordonlund » Tue Apr 03, 2007 10:06 pm

Jon,

The original colour code is etched on the id plate on the lh inner wing. I'll try and dig out the colour codes for you. I'm sure I have got them buried somewhere. LO4 is Cirrus White, my +2 original colour. (has been Regency Red for the last 20 years).

Good luck with the restoration. Part time and a little help here and there and depending on your bank balance, aim for 3 - 4 years. If you do it in less you will have worked hard. The secret is do it in stages and run the car as soon as it is road worthy. This will give you the inspiration to finish it off. The finishing can take a disproportionate amount of time and your enthusiasm may wane. Don't cut corners though as you will kick yourself afterward for not doing the best you can.

All the best

Gordon
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Pic of my '68 +2 last year on the west side of Windermere
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PostPost by: pmallinson » Tue Apr 03, 2007 11:46 pm

Hi

I collected the attached list form somewhere ? along my travels and research maybe it will help you ? :lol:

I found the easiest most accessible place to find my cars original colour (white) was int he air intakes in front of the windscreen as this area is a sod to rub down and clean properly before spraying so most people do not do it correctly hence the paint flakes back to original :shock:

just a thought

Cheers
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PostPost by: dusty » Wed Apr 04, 2007 8:05 pm

I checked my identity plate and the only thing engraved onto it is the chassis number. The engine number and paint code are not there, someone was obviously lazy that day!

The car has been lots of colours including black, red, dark blue and pistacio as can bee seen here where the previous owner stripped some paint.

Image

However I think the original colour was this light blue since you can see in this picture that only a grey/white primer sits between it and the gel coat.

Image

I'm presuming that since the car came off the production line on the 1st of March 68 that this is either French or Wedgewood blue

What do you think?

Cheers
Jon
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PostPost by: tower of strength » Wed Apr 04, 2007 8:20 pm

Great project! Good luck with completing it Dusty, theres plenty of help,encouragement and sympathy to be had via this site!!

Mark
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Wed Apr 04, 2007 10:09 pm

Jason, who posts on here, is the expert on early blues...colours that is, not Howlin' Wolf. But as he hasn't seen this yet, here's a pic he posted a while back to show the two different colours....the car at the front is Jason's Wedgewood car, and at the back is the French Blue.

From your pics, my money is on French blue, but both look superb on the Plus 2. Most cars from the 60s it seems didn't have their paint code scratched on the Vin plate.
Mark
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PostPost by: twincamman » Wed Apr 04, 2007 11:14 pm

good for you mine arrived in much the same condition ----on the plus side all the hard work is done -the disassembly --the fun part is building ---ed
dont close your eyes --you will miss the crash
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PostPost by: dusty » Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:22 pm

Thanks for the picture, how do I save this to my harddrive the usual option isn't there when I right click?


Elanintheforest wrote:Jason, who posts on here, is the expert on early blues...colours that is, not Howlin' Wolf. But as he hasn't seen this yet, here's a pic he posted a while back to show the two different colours....the car at the front is Jason's Wedgewood car, and at the back is the French Blue.

From your pics, my money is on French blue, but both look superb on the Plus 2. Most cars from the 60s it seems didn't have their paint code scratched on the Vin plate.
Mark
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PostPost by: dusty » Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:49 pm

I've investigated the colour a bit further.

I removed the headlining where it is stuck around the door opening and also cut away a section of the windscreen rubber to look at the paint underneath.

All I can see is the same off white paint as you can see under the blue in the second picture above. the glue for the headlining is directly over this white.

This suggests to me that the original colour might be off white, however this would mean that Lotus painted the finished colour directly over the gel coat with out any primer which i find hard to believe.

Does anyone know the method used to paint these cars, and also has anyone seen a similar white primer as the first coat over the gel coat when stipping back the paint?

Cheers
Jon
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