Lotus Elan

Rebuilding Time for my Plus Two

PostPost by: markcs » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:56 pm

Well, I have finally decided to get on with a rebuild of my Plus 2 after 15 years of happy ownership (she is a 1973 S130/5).

As I cannot for the life of me seem to be able to insert apicture into an email, here is a link of a picture of her a few year ago. https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/rpbL-_MYLzzocNeDwJoeJ9MTjNZETYmyPJy0liipFm0?feat=directlink

I have decided to take the plunge for a number of reasons including:

  • Loss of synchromesh in 2nd and 3rd
  • very noisy diff
  • micro blisters in the paint
  • shabby interior
  • tired of replacing the doughnuts
  • rusted out full tank
  • poor chrome etc!

She is going to get the full 9 yards - she deserves it! I have given myself 18 months (I know, I know - but a man can always dream!) Although I am not an out and out originalist I am going to keep her fairly original but with a few changes:

  • CV Joints
  • decent stereo-prob located in the glove box
  • electronic ignition (but definately keep the carbs - love the noise!)

I am going to do all the work myself, apart from refurb of the diff and gearbox and valve/rebore if required, and of course the paint. I plan to strip the paint myself using soda blasting but then (after saving hard) take her to Option 1 for the paintwork - she deserves a treat.

However the BIG decision is the colour - no one seems to like the tawny brown/gold flake roof in my family. Current favorite is lagoon blue with silver flake roof which I like and is an original colour, however I am always open to partisan ideas! What looks really good on a Plus 2?

Question: I am keen to retain the chassis which is a galvanised replacement from the factory. However under the body felt, the galvanising has suffered, as well in a few other places. Is it possible to hot dip regalvanise to bring back to new without risk of chassis distortion!

I will keep you all up to date with progress, with pictures, if I can understand how to embed them!

Mark
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PostPost by: types26/36 » Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:23 pm

markcs wrote:-I will keep you all up to date with progress, with pictures, if I can understand how to embed them!Mark


This post explains how to upload pics you have stored on your computer, I think the biggest problem people have is that the size often has to be reduced in order to upload.
elan-f15/instructions-for-adding-attachments-t13052.html
Brian
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PostPost by: cal44 » Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:59 pm

See if this works
Attachments
Lotus Elan Plus 2 S130-5.jpg and
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PostPost by: jeff jackson » Tue Dec 20, 2011 6:26 pm

Hi Mark,
Good luck with the rebuild.
For what it's worth I like that colour, even though mine is a Lagoon Blue, just like you are thinking.
If I were you I would fit an InPhase IP 100SSD Solid State Radio. I have fitted one of these, and I am very happy with it. fits a treat, no mods, and I can play all my music on a 4 Gig SD card. Brilliant.
Kind regards
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PostPost by: alaric » Tue Dec 20, 2011 8:28 pm

Hi. Looks nice in the pic. Difficult to choose a colour. I went for the lagoon blue in original cellulose. I'll be getting it redone in two pack when I get the chance. I like the colour you have already actually. Nearly bought one the same a few years back.

Sean.
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PostPost by: markcs » Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:32 pm

Thanks for the advice ref inserting a picture - easy when you know how!

If anyone in Dorset (I live between Blandford Forum and Dorchester) would be willing to let me see a Lagoon Blue Plus 2 that would be fantastic, as I have only seen the colour on the web which is almost certainly unrepresentative.

Will be calling around tomorrow ref hot dip galvanising and see what the various companies recommend for my chassis.

Mark
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:33 am

Welcome Mark,

I have to say I think the car looks great as it is and there are not too many Brown/Tawny/Sable cars around now. Mostly because everyone has painted them Blue or Red! Or in my case white.

Do you know what colour the car was originally? The Gold roof and sills hint that it hay have been a JPS, or were they painted that way later on?

Can't help with the galvanising question but I'm sure someone will be along soon who can.

Robbie
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PostPost by: mikealdren » Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:38 am

Hot galvanising can cause distortion. If your chassis is just rusted under the felt, it's not usually too serious, why not de-rust and paint it?

Some people use closed cell foam instead of felt to avoid corrosion, it's one of Brian Buckland's recommended mods.

The real areas to worry about are around the suspension towers from and rear.

Mike
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PostPost by: jono » Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:11 am

Stick to the tawny - a great and rare colour IMO. I think tawny looks especially good with a silver roof.

Back in fashion too - look at the latest BMW range :wink:

I think it would probably not be a 'correct' JPS on an L plate :?
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PostPost by: Jason1 » Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:24 pm

Hi mark

http://elanregistry.org/stats.php

If anyone in Dorset (I live between Blandford Forum and Dorchester) would be willing to let me see a Lagoon Blue Plus 2 that would be fantastic, as I have only seen the colour on the web which is almost certainly unrepresentative.


If you join the register (its free) you can zoom in on the map and send a message to anyone near you.

Jason
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PostPost by: kstrutt11 » Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:27 pm

For the chassis if it is just surface rust I would paint it with cold galvanising paint (basically a primer with very high zinc content) it's great stuff but make sure you buy the brush on one which has far more zinc, if it's a good one it should weigh about twice the weight of a normal tin of paint.

It's also worth waxing it before you put the body back on and replacing the felt with closed cell foam as advised above.

Mine was originally Lagoon blue / silver but someone in the past had painted it maroon then red.

On my clasic cars (which I like to use as much as possible) I have always preferred to use a non metallic cellulose because it's so easy to touch up.

kevin
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PostPost by: markcs » Wed Dec 21, 2011 2:09 pm

Thanks for all the feedback.

I have spoken to a few hot dip galvaniser's in the locale and both advise against hot dipping with the relatively thin guage of metal of the Chassis, due to possible distortion. I have also spoken to Paul Mattey's and was interested to learn that their new chassis are now supplied by their supplier in bare steel; apparently most people powder coat as the new chassis are not galvanised.

I shall try cold galvanising as the steel is not rusty anywhere, just that the galvanising looks slightly tatty underneath the original felt. I shall also take the excellent advice of the closed cell foam to replace the water absorbing felt.

I have sent an email to Lotus to try and find out what the original colour was. Interesting that some of you like the current tawny/sable, personally I agree with you, I think it looks great and is certainly fairly uncommon.

I shall await a reply from Lotus and then make a decision (but of course reserve the right to change my mind several times before coming back to my original decision!).
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PostPost by: markcs » Wed Dec 21, 2011 3:50 pm

That was fast! Andy Graham from Lotus, came straight back to me with details of my car.

The car was originally one colour - all tawny, with no gold roof. Apparently only the JPS cars had this option.

Andy explained that the 'standard' option was tawny with a silver flake roof, but if you paid extra you could have the car all one colour, which is what my car was originally. Seems a bit back to front!

It makes sense, as I have removed some paint from the front wing and all that was there was primer and the tawny paint, so notwithstanding a full back to the gel coat respray, my car would appear to have her original paint (complete with hairline cracks and a myriad of microblisters (would these cost extra?!).

I also spoke to Option 1 ref having her repainted, very very helpful over the phone. Apparently (unless I have completely misunderstood what was explained to me) Lotus used to scatter metal flake into the silver paint which is why it could turn out to be rather patchy!

So a complete Volte Face and have decicided to have her repainted her original tawny with a silver flake roof, all tawny would be a bit much and the silver roof was original anyway (even though not for my car).

THE BOSS agrees - so that is one more decision out of the way - tawny it is!
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PostPost by: jono » Wed Dec 21, 2011 4:55 pm

The metal flakes went into the gel coat but it didn't always work so most were repainted, or so goes the story.

Jon
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PostPost by: jeff jackson » Wed Dec 21, 2011 6:43 pm

Hi Mark,
I have a Lagoon Blue +2 and I live in Poole, if you did want a close look.
However should you wish to use a top class bodyshop I can recommend giving Martin Knight a call.
He resprayed my car after an accident and I am really pleased with the work he did.
Martin owns Nidor Bodyworks in Hamworthy Poole (01202) 671741. http://www.nidor.co.uk/

Kind regards
Jeff 72+2
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