Lotus Elan

My Burgundi Elan plus 2 from 1968 to be restored : Sven

PostPost by: Newsax » Mon Mar 09, 2020 10:55 am

Hello Guys,

New to the forum, I have just acquire a Lotus Elan +2 from 1968 :D
Just imported it last month from UK to Belgium.
She only had 2 owners before me, and have been sitting in a barn for more than 30 years :shock:
V5 paper, motor and plate are matching numbers :mrgreen:
She is chassis number 0747. Has about 90500 Miles
And need a deep restauration ! :P

Didn't had the time to make a deep inspection, but color Braun Burgundi seems to be the original one, completely shot of course (it is the one on the V5 at least and does not seems to cover any other color).
Strangely, I cannot find this color in Lotus standard color of those time ?

Apart for paint, bodywork is really good, no damage or anything.
Original Chassis seems surface rusted but I will need to make a deep inspection for cracs at support or deeper rust (keeping my finger crossed).

She is not 100 % orignal I Believe but most of it is, If you can tell me at first what is not original I would appreciate, so far I saw : Steering Wheel is not the original, wheels are painted black while they should be aluminum color I Believe, missing the alu strip around the windscreen, open roof (completely shot)).

Engine have been partially reconditioned (have been replace : clutch and brake master cylinder, starter motor, battery plus terminals, plugs, points, condenser and leads) by previous owner and is running giving fuels directly at the carbs. it turns without issue and without any weird noise. But will of course need a deeper overlook.

I'm not a mechanics, so first opportunity for me to learn from almost scratch. It's definitely a long terms restauration, that may even start only in several months/years, so Hopefully you will be able to help me out if needed. Will try to join some pictures.

PS: Maybe a little word about me, I'm a lotus lover, I own a Seven and 2 Elises S1 (std and 111S) But I have always dreemed to remake an early lotus… and I so much love the curves of the Elan plus 2 .
In addition parts are available "easily" from UK for those Elan plus 2 which was the main point for me.

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.27.20 (2).jpeg and

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.27.20.jpeg and

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.26.18 (2).jpeg and

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.26.18 (1).jpeg and

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.27.20 (3).jpeg and

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.25.46.jpeg and

WhatsApp Image 2020-02-04 at 20.25.43.jpeg and
Last edited by Newsax on Tue Aug 04, 2020 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Mon Mar 09, 2020 7:13 pm

Looks to me like you’ve got all of the important, difficult to find, bits. The only thing that might be an inferior after market reproduction, is the rear bumper? Though it does appear to fit pretty well? The sunroof may be a Webasto, which I believe was fitted at the dealerships?

Looks like a nice project to me. Will give you hours, and hours, and hours, and hours of fun! :D

PS: Photograph EVERYTHING, and never throw ANYTHING away!
Where, then, lies the answer? In choice. Which shall it be: bankruptcy of purse or bankruptcy of life?

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PostPost by: The Veg » Tue Mar 10, 2020 3:57 am

Welcome! Good to see another Plus 2 on the way up. I hope it brings you much joy!
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PostPost by: Newsax » Tue Mar 10, 2020 9:30 am

Hello,

Thank you for the positives comments !

Where would you start ?

I probably would need to remove the shell to have a clear view on what is inside/below, but following this forum it is best to replace the Sill Member before removing the shell.

And honestly, I have no Idea of what is exactly the sill member, I have this from Paul Matty site :
https://paulmattysportscars.co.uk/produ ... dy-elan-2/

So from what I Believe it is "bas de caisse" in french, but how they are fixed, and where is not clear to me.
And the Elan plus 2 parts manual does only show this, is it item 2 ?
shell.jpg and


Talking about the Elan plus 2 parts manual I have this image mentioning the Body felt, but I do not have any good Idea what it is ? is it made of metal ? will it rust ? need replacement ? where to get those ? How are they attached ???
body felt.jpg and


First interogations ... more to come :D :lol:
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PostPost by: JonB » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:08 am

The "body felt" is made of horsehair, so it doesn't rust. It's bonded together loosely in a mat and provides sound insulation. Glued to the body inner at the factory, you'll find it under the carpets. Deterioration is normally caused by water, dirt and subsequent rot. Check under the foot well carpets in particular. Try looking in the passenger foot well behind the glove box. You should see some glued to the bulkhead. You can buy it by the metre or as a complete pre-cut kit from the UK parts suppliers.

Regarding your sill members, there are inspection plates on the forward side of the rear wheel arches. Part 41 in the diagram. Remove these (they should be screwed or riveted onto the body) and you can look inside the sill cavity at the steel members and see if they are rusty. Quick check would be to poke around the jacking points at either end of the sills with a screwdriver. If you look at the bottom of the sill you should see a line of fasteners (screws, normally). These are what secure the sill members to the body. You can undo these and draw the members out through the inspection hole, it's not said to be too difficult. I've not done mine because they were already done when I bought the car. You need these strengtheners in particular so you can jack the car up at the side of the road in the event of a punctured tyre. The jacks have a pin that engages with a short sleeve welded to each end of the sill members. If this is weakened due to rust, jacking it might result in collapse and body damage.

I think your rear bumper looks non original. Originals have a swage line running along the bottom edge and you can see (underneath, once removed) where they were extended to fit the Plus 2 (two welded joins either side of the number plate lights).

One thing I notice is the light coloured carpet on the door cards. Is this badly faded black carpet or oatmeal coloured (kind of golden yellow)? If oatmeal, it's unusual as the vinyl would be a similar colour.
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PostPost by: Newsax » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:25 am

Thank you for the info Jon, good to know for the felt :lol:

I was believing sill members to be long (alongside the bottom side border of the shell), but it is only on the rear side then, will have a look once I can lift the car up (early April ?)
If they are rusty they need replacement then ? or just a sanding and painting can make it if surface rust only ?

Is it indeed better to have those sill member replace (if needed) prior to removing the body ?

Thanks for rear bumper, didn't notice that, as it indeed fit quite well, will check to find an original one if still possible, or will just treat this one if not.

Those ugly light colored carped may have be discolored or from another colour, but I agree are definitely to be changed :lol:
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PostPost by: alanr » Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:30 pm

Just to add a bit of clarity for you regarding the sill member and also to help your knowledge, the sill members on a +2 are steel inserts inside the side sill running between the wheels alongside the car.
Have a read of this explanation that will give you an insite on how to check and perhaps replace them :-
http://www.haverstad.net/lotus/elan/sil ... cement.htm

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PostPost by: Newsax » Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:44 pm

alanr wrote:Just to add a bit of clarity for you regarding the sill member and also to help your knowledge, the sill members on a +2 are steel inserts inside the side sill running between the wheels alongside the car.
Have a read of this explanation that will give you an insite on how to check and perhaps replace them :-
http://www.haverstad.net/lotus/elan/sil ... cement.htm

Alan.


Excellent link and procedure Alan, thank you for sharing. :)
So the sill member are finally the "bas de caisse" I though !

So first step would be to remove front and rear seat :lol:
(Where to start ? :oops: ) :lol:
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PostPost by: EPC 394J » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:26 pm

You can lift the body off the chassis and then fit the “bas de caisse”. (Most well known suppliers have them.) The fibreglass roof will keep the body straight. The job is also much easier without the chassis fitted. I could pretty much guarantee yours will be little more than rusty dust!

You have a really good car there.

Lifting the body off the chassis is actually remarkably easy. There are posts on here describing the process. Just do it!
Where, then, lies the answer? In choice. Which shall it be: bankruptcy of purse or bankruptcy of life?

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PostPost by: Quart Meg Miles » Tue Mar 10, 2020 10:32 pm

What a great starting point you have in that car! But before starting you must decide where you want to end, or what stages you want to pause at. After all, the point of owning a Lotus is to drive it and enjoy the sublime handling.

As you have an early example of the +2 it would be nice to keep it original. They worked OK as made and there is enough to keep you busy without digressing. But many others will disagree with me, it's a philosophical thing.

So is your aim to restore it for the purpose of driving it or to display it as though it is new? You need to establish the soundness of the chassis at the front suspension towers first anyway and if fine then I would complete all the mechanical jobs before thinking about the body. I drove a late +2 for several years with rusted-through sills and they can be replaced at any time.

Best of luck
Meg

26/4088 1965 S1½ Old and scruffy but in perfect working order; the car too.
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PostPost by: richardcox_lotus » Wed Mar 11, 2020 7:43 am

Good luck with it !

This site is an excellent source of knowledge, but before firing thousands of questions I urge you to get copies of the Workshop Manual and also the Parts Manual.

These will give a greater indication as to how it all goes together. Taking it apart is the easy bit. :D

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PostPost by: Newsax » Wed Mar 11, 2020 7:56 am

Hi there,

From different topics in this forum, it is mentioned to replace the sill member before to unscrew the body and lift it to avoid having a mis alignement of body with chassis when you turn back the body to the chassis.
Is that true ?
Body will indeed be the last part to restore, but if I need to replace the sill members first to avoid mis alignement of body with chassis… I will do it :P
I will anyway need to remove the body from chassis to easilly access everything else.

I have seen several step by step process to remove the body from the chassis, but I still have a question, what about electrics, fuel line ands brakes line ? everything only attached to the chassis, not the body ?

I agree with original matters, my Idea is rebuilding it to almost original, I do not urge to have it on the road, that will really be the final conclusion, the point at the moment is the rebuild :wink: (knowing I have others Lotus to enjoy a drive 8)

NB: I do have the Elan part manual and workshop manual 8)
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PostPost by: The Veg » Wed Mar 11, 2020 3:02 pm

Newsax wrote:I have seen several step by step process to remove the body from the chassis, but I still have a question, what about electrics, fuel line ands brakes line ? everything only attached to the chassis, not the body ?


On my Plus 2, the only electrical connections to the chassis that I've found are earths/grounds, which are connected via some of the bolts that secure the body. This means that when you put it all back together you should take some time to ensure good connections at these points, since bad earths are notorious gremlins in a Lotus.

The fuel tank is inside the body but the line runs through the chassis, so be sure to disconnect it at the tank. But if you're doing a total inside-out resto, you'll be removing the tank anyway. If yours is like mine it will have a compression fitting underneath the car in the space that the differential and rear suspension occupy.

The brake lines are mostly on the chassis but there will be a connection up to the body-mounted servos or master cylinder. My Federal '70 had two lines, not very long, one for the front circuit and one for the rear. They came down from the servos to tees mounted on the frame near the engine.

Also don't forget the brace that runs between the rear shock towers, which will need removal to get the body off. You'll see it once you remove the rear seatback.
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PostPost by: Newsax » Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:35 am

The Veg wrote:
Newsax wrote:I have seen several step by step process to remove the body from the chassis, but I still have a question, what about electrics, fuel line ands brakes line ? everything only attached to the chassis, not the body ?


On my Plus 2, the only electrical connections to the chassis that I've found are earths/grounds, which are connected via some of the bolts that secure the body. This means that when you put it all back together you should take some time to ensure good connections at these points, since bad earths are notorious gremlins in a Lotus.

The fuel tank is inside the body but the line runs through the chassis, so be sure to disconnect it at the tank. But if you're doing a total inside-out resto, you'll be removing the tank anyway. If yours is like mine it will have a compression fitting underneath the car in the space that the differential and rear suspension occupy.

The brake lines are mostly on the chassis but there will be a connection up to the body-mounted servos or master cylinder. My Federal '70 had two lines, not very long, one for the front circuit and one for the rear. They came down from the servos to tees mounted on the frame near the engine.

Also don't forget the brace that runs between the rear shock towers, which will need removal to get the body off. You'll see it once you remove the rear seatback.


Thank you so much !!!
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PostPost by: wotsisname » Thu Mar 12, 2020 3:50 pm

You look to have a nice lot of original parts and looks a really good starting point.
You are missing the extension to the brake master cylinder. The radiator might not be original and the vacuum take off from the front carb should run down the side of the radiator to the vacuum tank in the chassis.
Take care of the centre console and the dashpad (quite fragile), both are difficult/impossible to replace and yours look in good order.
To get the rear seats out, you pull the centre (basket weave) section off to expose a couple of screws. Care when lifting it out as the top of the seat has a metal plate that can poke through the vinyl and rip the headlining material on the side panels. The original material can be difficult to source. The side panels are fastened behind the external vents (this is also the coathook screw fixing) and there may be a screw or two behind the door seals. Take a lot of photos.. I think we owners spend a lot of time trying to work out where the various parts should fit when rebuilding.
With the exception of a few earths the wiring loom is contained within the body (take a note of how it runs as this can also be a puzzle later). The loom is in 3 parts, with the join being just behind the dashboard by the heater.
The metalwork in the sill area can be replaced with the body fitted to the chassis..I seem to remember it being easier from the rear and it may help to dismantle the suspension first. You may have to cut/grind off the bolts along the lower edge that are under the carpet edge. The plates in the rear wheel arches give access to the seatbelt upper mounting plates and part of the door locks.
hope this all helps... and good luck

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