Lotus Elan

Removing side impact frames

PostPost by: patrics » Fri Sep 30, 2016 8:23 pm

Hi
Have used search for this but no joy

Do the side impact frames come out towards the rear or front or?

Thanks
Steve
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PostPost by: SimonH » Fri Sep 30, 2016 9:09 pm

Mine came out the bottom and then I swept them up :lol: :wink:

I think they are supposed to come out easier rearwards but you need to remove the strut. My Spyder ones went in nicely like that.
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PostPost by: KevJ+2 » Fri Sep 30, 2016 9:59 pm

Mine came out and went in (spyder) without removing hubs or struts (rear), maybe I got lucky :D
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Sat Oct 01, 2016 8:54 am

The Spyder ones should go in and out with the rear struts in place, but the original Lotus items do require the struts to be removed.

Are they side impact bars? At only a few inches off the ground I don't think they would stop much in the way of a side impact, unless the car hitting you had a snow plough on the front. I believe they are just there to strengthen up the shell a little, which is very floppy without them!
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PostPost by: pharriso » Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:18 am

Usually referred to as "Sill members"; If you do a search using that term you will find a lot of info...
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PostPost by: ianthomson72 » Sat Oct 01, 2016 10:00 am

They also provide the seat belt mounting point.

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PostPost by: Quart Meg Miles » Sat Oct 01, 2016 12:14 pm

ianthomson72 wrote:They also provide the seat belt mounting point.

Regards

Really? I thought those were on the spaceframe around the door aperture like the two seater.

We are talking +2s, and mine fell out the bottom OF THE CAR, unlike Simon's which must have required medical attention.
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PostPost by: patrics » Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:44 am

Gents,
Thanks for replies
search "sill members" definitely works better
Mine look in very good condition so out through the bottom isn't going to happen!


Regards
Steve
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PostPost by: CBUEB1771 » Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:08 am

Quart Meg Miles wrote:Really? I thought those were on the spaceframe around the door aperture like the two seater.


The +2 does not have the lattice structure which is bonded into Elan shells.
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PostPost by: Quart Meg Miles » Mon Oct 03, 2016 10:54 pm

CBUEB1771 wrote:
Quart Meg Miles wrote:Really? I thought those were on the spaceframe around the door aperture like the two seater.


The +2 does not have the lattice structure which is bonded into Elan shells.

Thanks Russ,

My ignorance, but it must be why I never had to touch it on my S130, everything else went wrong! As the sill members were oxide what was my seat belt held on by? :shock:
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PostPost by: Bud English » Tue Oct 04, 2016 1:01 am

Fiberglass, rust and a prayer.
"My my, hey hey... It's better to burn out than it is to rust."
Ah, life on the edge. :lol:
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PostPost by: Sea Ranch » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:20 am

Steve, you can take them OUT either front or rear. Just use your sawzall, or a hacksaw, and cut them off, chunk at a time as you pull them out. No problem.

Which way to get new ones back IN is a different question. If you're working toward a new paint job/respray, then I would suggest:
- out and back in from the rear
- jack car and remove one rear wheel. Keep other wheels on ground
- put jack under rear suspension and lift rear hub/compress suspension
- now your hub is mostly out of the path of the sill as it comes out/goes back in.
- the final bit of clearance comes from flexing the fiberglass outer sill out to allow the sill member to go into place on a bit of an angle.

Honestly, mine were not a problem doing it this way. However, if the paint on my car was really good, I might worry about gel coat cracks when flexing the outer sill panel.

One final tip/reminder: Keep the doors closed, keep the car level, with normal "weight" on all four corners. The rear hub on the side you're working on should be jacked enough to approximate normal ride height. This is so the body is not twisted during the process. Work on one side at a time. Completely install the new member before moving over to other side.

Regards,

Randy
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PostPost by: patrics » Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:06 am

Randy,
Thanks for that,
Mine look perfect so don't want to saw them.
I'm thinking of building a track car and obviously the plus2 is very heavy in comparison to the 2 seater so looking at options to reduce weight.
It will need a roll cage so that will also have to replace the side frames - haven't started yet just looking at it

Regards
Steve
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PostPost by: jimj » Tue Oct 11, 2016 1:33 pm

If removing your "side impact frames" improves your lap time I will eat my sandwich.
Jim
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PostPost by: Matt Elan » Wed Oct 12, 2016 2:05 pm

On both my Plus 2's most of the sill members fell out of the sills when I opened up the bottom joint; the rest came out with the vacuum cleaner.......
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1969 Plus 2S - Currently undergoing nut and bolt restoration
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