Lotus Elan

Rise and Shine-Cleaning up your Elan's exterior finish

PostPost by: mjbeanie » Wed Mar 06, 2024 2:40 am

Well I am really hustling to get my Plus 2 ready for a big British Car show coming up in North Carolina. The show is called The Gathering, and being held at the Shelton Vineyards in April. I have some great references threads to help with the headliner which is next. Then I hope to find professional help for the windscreens. After that its really just clean up the finish.

Now my question, the car has never been cleaned or waxed since I got it-since it was under construction. The paint is good, bright and has a sheen under the dust and dirt. But it could look much better.

Are there some favorite, highly recommended polishes and/or waxes that you like for your Elan? I realize this is a very broad based question but would like the community's feedback. At 61 years old, I have many cars, but never owned a fiberglass car. -I wish to make this car look great for the show. Thanks y'all.

Cheers
Mike
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'71 Lotus Elan Plus 2S130 (Type 50/0179)
'70 Opel GT
'67 Sunbeam Alpine
'88 Porsche 924 S
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PostPost by: mark030358 » Wed Mar 06, 2024 9:29 am

Get a a good DA, I preferred the smaller size pad, say 80 to 100mm and some Menzerna polishes. I would go for the “Heavy Cut, “Medium Cut”, “Super Finish” and “Sealant’. If you only have light swirl marks then drop the heavy cut. A brilliant set of products.

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PostPost by: mjbeanie » Thu Mar 07, 2024 2:04 am

Thank you I appreciate the feedback. Its on its way.
'71 Lotus Elan Plus 2S130 (Type 50/0179)
'70 Opel GT
'67 Sunbeam Alpine
'88 Porsche 924 S
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Posts: 127
Joined: 29 Mar 2019
Location: Raleigh NC, USA

PostPost by: Dellortofan » Thu Mar 07, 2024 3:05 pm

Start with as gentle a cutting agent as needed once everything spotless .
Go course later where required . You can take paint off easily. Putting it back less so.
So several heavy cuts over the years=repaint.
Masking tape ~3m, rubbed on trousers reduced tack, along any curves or edges likely burned through.
Machine polished is quick,
hand slow and safe.
Use body shop supplier.
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PostPost by: mikealdren » Fri Mar 08, 2024 9:06 am

I would start with a good wash followed by a clay bar to get the car really clean. Then start polishing.
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PostPost by: mjbeanie » Sat Mar 09, 2024 4:06 am

Thank you-this is good stuff! I got the Mothers' clay kit on the way and the Menzerna 3 in 1 polish with medium cut pad. Time to get to work! Will advise outcome. Cheers, Mike
'71 Lotus Elan Plus 2S130 (Type 50/0179)
'70 Opel GT
'67 Sunbeam Alpine
'88 Porsche 924 S
mjbeanie
Second Gear
Second Gear
 
Posts: 127
Joined: 29 Mar 2019
Location: Raleigh NC, USA

PostPost by: Dellortofan » Wed Mar 13, 2024 6:07 pm

Normally a new paint job will have faults. If you view the reflection of something straight {post or pillar} in paint under a strong light or lamp, you will see if it has a wavy or straight edge.
After polishing enough the edge will be straight when the paint is truly flat. No need to go further.
Wavy reflection means orange peel etc.
This is difficult to explain but easy when you look.
Heat or burning from machine Polishing is easy to get. Practice on scrap panels.
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PostPost by: mjbeanie » Mon Mar 18, 2024 2:57 am

Well these recommendations have gone very well. The paint is far from perfect on this car, however I just wished to make it more presentable. So I got some "Mothers' Clay in a kit form, that seemed to work very nicely on the finish. I also selected a Menzerna medium cut polish, and wax in one bottle. I did all the work by hand, no machine. The combination of the two brought up the finish very nicely. It still needs more work and effort but here is how things currently appear.

(If you look closely at the car photos, you can see the reflection the moon and an aircraft- which was kinda fun)
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IMG_3833.jpg and
IMG_3835.jpg and
IMG_3832 (1).jpg and
'71 Lotus Elan Plus 2S130 (Type 50/0179)
'70 Opel GT
'67 Sunbeam Alpine
'88 Porsche 924 S
mjbeanie
Second Gear
Second Gear
 
Posts: 127
Joined: 29 Mar 2019
Location: Raleigh NC, USA

PostPost by: mark030358 » Mon Mar 18, 2024 10:28 am

Made up for you. Nothing better than a nice shiney car.

cheers
Mark
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