Lotus Elan

Well I've done it now!

PostPost by: vincereynard » Wed Oct 12, 2016 9:39 pm

After over a year of waffle and wonder I have now bought a +2. A 130/5 to be precise.

The car had been subject to a 3 year rebuild where loads had been spent, some on bits of dubious worth, but understandably for the P.O. He had intended to emigrate with the car hence the expense. Then found the country he was moving to does not accept classic car imports without a mountain of red tape.

I had intended to drive it home (about 240 miles) but one of the few bits not renewed, the gear lever, broke after a feeble 6.8 miles. When I got it home I shoved it in the garage and left it a day in case I was tempted to do a "Basil Fawlty" with a piece of 4 X 2. Hence the thread on gearlever balls.

photo0107.jpg and


photo0105.jpg and


A few points I would be interested in
1/ The roof is a bit OTT flash, is it possible to spray with a semi matt lacquer to calm it down a bit?
2/ Despite been new from filler cap to carbs it still seems to fill the garage with a fuel smell. There seems no smell inside the car but open up in the morning and it is quite strong. Is this quite normal with an old Lotus?

Vince
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PostPost by: mbell » Wed Oct 12, 2016 9:59 pm

Congrats, looks a nice car!

vincereynard wrote:2/ Despite been new from filler cap to carbs it still seems to fill the garage with a fuel smell. There seems no smell inside the car but open up in the morning and it is quite strong. Is this quite normal with an old Lotus?


This is quite normal for the plus +2. There some mods that can be done to improve it, take a look at:
lotus-carbs-f40/lotus-elan-fuel-system-overview-and-improvements-t30305.html?hilit=fuel#p202334

or have a search for "breather mod".
'73 +2 130/5 RHD, now on the road and very slowly rolling though a "restoration"
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PostPost by: roblotus79 » Thu Oct 13, 2016 4:11 am

Number one cheapest solution that helps is to whittle down a couple of wine corks and plug the ends of the breather tubes that come off the petrol tank. They end in front of the rear wheels in the wheel well. One on each side

Just remember to take them out before driving

If that does not help significantly, then the tubes themselves may have become brittle and broken. This is more involved in terms of fixing and at that point you might want to check out all the fine solutions in the links above
50/2180 1969 Elan Plus 2
1990 Esprit Turbo SE
1986 Carrera 3.2
1982 Turbo Esprit - SOLD
1970 Europa S2 - SOLD
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PostPost by: Rich135 » Thu Oct 13, 2016 8:12 am

Mine is exactly the same Vince. I put a cork in the breather tube on the drivers side (which helps a little) but it's difficult for me to get to the passenger side in my garage. I can even smell my car in my dressing room above the garage, which I like, but my wife... not so much :lol:
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:00 am

Why don't you like your wife?

John :wink:
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PostPost by: Rich135 » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:18 am

john.p.clegg wrote:Why don't you like your wife?

John :wink:

Ha ha, very good John!
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Thu Oct 13, 2016 9:31 am

Great colour for the Plus 2, and it will have been worth that wait I'm sure.
I had the same problem with a roof that was just too bling, and I don't think there is an easy answer.

I tried rubbing it down with a fine wet & dry to see if the matt effect worked, but that made it look worse. I took it to a mate who is a genius with paint systems, and he tried a few things, like mixing a little grey in a clear coat and spraying it on, but it never got close to looking right. I think that you only have one option, and that is to get the roof re-painted properly, either in the original specification glitter ball effect, or yellow. It's quite easy to do, hence not too expensive, and an all yellow Plus 2 looks magnificent!

For me, the sparkly roof is the one part of the Plus 2 that hasn't aged well, and in period, a lot of roofs were painted body colour, even when new.

Mark
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PostPost by: vincereynard » Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:24 am

Thanks for the replies chaps.

The thing is everything has been replaced. Motorcycle style "non leak" fuel cap/ ali fuel tank,
fuel pipe / pump / braided hose etc etc. It also has a breather modification where one pipe connects to the filler neck whilst the other is a redirected 2mm pipe. Yet still it pongs.

I always wondered why Lotus did not simply put the filler in the middle and solve all these problems easy peasy.

Chassis rebuild and repainted. New - all corners / hydraulics / starter & alternator / ali rad and header /
driveshafts/ electric headlamp lifts / Immobaliser and central locking (!!) / Rebuilt lead free lump / tyres / SS exhaust (dubious about this - it looks a bit big.) And so on. Pages and pages of invoices that total over ?24000.

As to the roof, the P.O. (original owner!), maintains thats how it always was. He had simply had a coat of clear lacquer blown over.

lotus-2.jpg and


It is easy to find in a carpark, all it needed was a new gearstick!

My wife's smell is not up for discussion on this forum.
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PostPost by: Gray » Thu Oct 13, 2016 11:55 am

A fair number of +2s had vinyl roofs in the day. A black vinyl roof would look quite good with yellow.

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PostPost by: vxah » Thu Oct 13, 2016 12:30 pm

As it's an S130 has it not got the metalflake under the gelcoat?
Mine is the same colour as yours and when I flatted off the yellow paint and primer from the roof it had the glitter ball underneath!
Flatted it all down and clear coated it... Well I like it!
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PostPost by: gus » Thu Oct 13, 2016 1:04 pm

Don't plug both vents

plugging one should stop the breeze across the tanks and lower the smelll

one could also put orifice plugs in both, IOW woine corks with a small hole in the middle

Retro is cool these days, keep the metalflake
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Thu Oct 13, 2016 1:58 pm

I have not got a Plus 2 but I thought of this.
The smell of petrol may not be caused only by the breathers. My series 3 Elan causes a strong smell of petrol in the garage for several hours after use.
It was out yesterday and now the smell has cleared, but the fuel level in the Weber carburettors is 7mm below the normal running level.
I have always assumed this is due to petrol evaporating from the hot carburettors whilst cooling down in the garage.
Just a thought,
That is a wonderful colour. Is that what is sometimes called `screaming yellow`. I love it, mines blue!
Eric in Burnley
1967 S3SE DHC
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PostPost by: SimonH » Thu Oct 13, 2016 2:01 pm

vxah wrote:As it's an S130 has it not got the metalflake under the gelcoat?
Mine is the same colour as yours and when I flatted off the yellow paint and primer from the roof it had the glitter ball underneath!
Flatted it all down and clear coated it... Well I like it!


The metal flake as I understand was hand applied into the mould as a glitter type of stuff and then had gel coat put over it with GRP to follow.
If they went wrong, as it couldn't be found out until they came out of the mould, they just painted the whole thing.
Yours may have been officially 'not good enough' for whatever reason.

Don't know if any were sprayed silver at the factory, I guess the JPS gold was paint though?
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PostPost by: vincereynard » Thu Oct 13, 2016 2:29 pm

As it happens the yellow pig refuses to start now, so the colour of the roof may be the best way of finding the bas***d when I bury it! On the other hand Nov 5th is soon.

Less than I week and I wonder why I bothered.
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PostPost by: The Veg » Thu Oct 13, 2016 2:38 pm

Congrats Vince, and I'm sure you'll get it all sorted.
1969/70 Elan Plus 2 (not S) 50/2036
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