Lotus Elan

Elan Plus 2 early chassis number 60

PostPost by: Melodyk » Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:55 pm

Hi Mark. My cam cover just has Lotus down each side. I'm not sure what you mean about bonnet springs. Do you mean two springs at the headlamp end or at the top where you press it down? Melody
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PostPost by: steveh » Wed Aug 30, 2017 9:18 pm

Hi Melody ,

I own Mark's old chassis 24, registration MAE 120F.

I have just checked the windscreen profile and it is curved same as yours .

Other differences i have noticed are the reinforcing bar between the turrets behind the petrol tank is made from round tube ,later cars used square section , my servo is a MK2a - no idea when they stopped being fitted but i have only seen MK2b's fitted to other +2 , early cars had a narrower pedal box . The laid up thickness of the fibreglass also seems twice as thick !. Perspex 1/4 lights.

I have spoke with Mark before about the cam cover , but it has always niggled me why 24 has the front script cam cover , mainly because the sales brochure clearly shows a side script one in black ,

If anyone has any early history of my chassis 24 , MAE 120F i would be most grateful.

Steve
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PostPost by: 512BB » Thu Aug 31, 2017 6:55 am

I wondered what a lady was doing with a pair of binoculars at work, until you posted your pictures. I thought maybe you were holed up in your +2 as an undercover copper, peering over the dashboard, but your images have cleared that up!

As has been said, your car looks fabulous and what a lovely part of the world you live in to enjoy it. The original windscreen surround looks great. Why Lotus ever went away from that, to bits of plastic, was such a retrograde step. Costs I suppose.........penny pinching firm. I have one of those surrounds if anyone wants one.

Anyway, enjoy your car Melody, whilst the weather holds.

Leslie
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:12 am

Two springs at the front Melody, to pull the bonnet up when it's unlatched. See photo.

You're right Steve, the launch brochure does show the early cam cover on the car, but remember that the brochure was printed in advance of the car launch, and of course, the car photographed was built well in advance of that. My guess is that the later cam cover didn't even exist when that pre-production car was built or even when the photo was taken, which could have been back in May / June / July of 1967.

The earliest production Plus 2 cars left the factory in August, and that was exactly the change point for the later cam cover. Lotus re-designed the cover so that their name could be seen on the Mk2 Lotus Cortina engine with it's huge air cleaner in place, and the 2nd version of that car, with the new cam cover, was launched in August 1967, about the same time (give or take a few weeks) as the Plus 2.

It's very likely that Lotus had a few of the early cam covers left in stock of course, so a very early Plus 2 could could have had either. It seems more likely though that a new model would have the new design fitted, and the older stock used up on the 2 seat cars? It's also only the very early re-designed cam covers like yours that have such pronounced 'ghost' marks on the cover, and that is in keeping with your car. It seems unlikely that such a cover would have found it's way onto your car unless fitted from new.

But nothing is impossible of course!
Mark
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PostPost by: steveh » Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:39 am

Mark your thorough explanation makes good sense as always . I have just remembered about the chassis 2 car that was for sale for quite a while on ebay , claimed to maybe be George Best's ! , that had a side script black cover.


Steve
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Thu Aug 31, 2017 8:04 am

Anything is possible Steve, and of course, over 50 years, many changes could have been made.

One thing I've learnt over the years about trying to define originality it that it's all about probability, rather than a binary definition of right or wrong!

Leslie, the story of the stainless steel screen trims used to be told by Ron Hickman. They settled on the (early) Capri for the windscreen and surround to fit in the Plus 2, but that model was discontinued by Ford in the mid 1960s. Due to total lack of communication, Ford scrapped the tooling for the trims, which Lotus only found out about when they were about to start production of the Plus 2! A couple of guys were dispatched to the Ford dealers nearby to buy up as many trims as they could find, whilst a more permanent fix was designed.

That fix was the simple plastic-chrome fillet piece in the rubber windscreen surround, as per the 2 seat elan, but of course, they had to get the new rubber surround in production.

They used up 100 or so sets of stainless trim on the first cars, and when the new rubbers became available, that was used.

But the stainless trims came back with the launch of the 'S' Plus 2. Quite a few more stainless sets had been found, so the first batch of 'S' cars also had them fitted. There was never any re-tooling for those stainless trims made.

Mark
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PostPost by: Orsom Weels » Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:24 am

Hawksfield wrote:Maybe someone knows more about it on the forum as I thought the Consul Capri screen was a usable replacement for a +2


I thought so too, in fact, I pulled a screen from a Consul Classic & fitted it to my old 69 'S' many years ago. Went straight in with no problems, it did have the Ford stainless trim & rubber though.

Just had a look at my current 'S'130 with bonded screen & plastic trim, the screen curvature looks about the same as Melodies to me.

img_0189.jpg and


I had heard something along the lines of the earliest cars used a different screen to the later models, & had also heard, as Mark says, that the +2 was designed to use the Classic/Capri screen & surround.
It would be interesting to have a definitive answer to this, anyone know anything further with any degree of certainty ?

Regards, Tim
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:05 pm

Elanintheforest wrote:....... It's also only the very early re-designed cam covers like yours that have such pronounced 'ghost' marks on the cover, and that is in keeping with your car. It seems unlikely that such a cover would have found it's way onto your car unless fitted from new.

But nothing is impossible of course!
Mark


My August 1968 Elan original cam cover was identical in terms of ghost marks from the side Lotus lettering so it appears that potentially they lasted for at least a year.

cheers
Rohan
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PostPost by: The Veg » Sat Sep 02, 2017 10:27 pm

Let me see if I understand the curvature thing. The cars shown above have a gradual arc through the vertical sweep of the glass, as opposed to mine below, which seems more straight then bends more near the top?

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PostPost by: Melodyk » Mon Sep 04, 2017 7:43 pm

With regard to the windscreen we are wondering if it's more curved around at the sides rather than top to bottom. When we replaced the dashboard crash pad we bought a replacement from Paul Matty and it was a completely different curve. We tried to trim it to fit but it was so different we gave up. It was £180 so a lot of money to waste. We ended up repairing our old one and getting a leather cover for it. Has anyone else tried to fit one of Paul Matty's? They are on sale at the moment. There is a picture on their website. The corners look nothing like ours!
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PostPost by: Bigbaldybloke » Mon Sep 04, 2017 8:43 pm

In random order, I've just bought a Paul Matty dashboard top but not tried fitting it yet, my chassis number is 142.
My windscreen is in the depths of my loft, but it's not an original as it's got a tinted top band so is a later replacement, it had the narrow screen surround not the wide one shown in the pictures above. My bonnet does have two springs fitted between the steering rack an bonnet frame, although I understand that there is a recommended mod to remove one or both of these so that if the bonnet came unlatched while driving it wouldn't fly up and block your view. The rear support behind the rear screen that reinforces the boot hinge areas is made of round tubing on mine, not square. The engine in mine has been replaced early in its life before I bought it with a big valve engine, looked like it was from a crashed car as one gearbox securing bolt lug has been roughly weld repaired. Mine has the transverse rear silencer and had the bullet type wing mirrors on the top of both front wings, it's also got the combined door handles and locks rather than the separate lock.
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PostPost by: mikealdren » Tue Sep 12, 2017 4:35 pm

I'm sure that all +2s had the same Ford Capri screen, IIRC the car was designed around it.
In the 60s, many parts were standard across manufacturers and tooling for a screen was expensive (curved screen had only been around for a few years!). The Ford screen was also used for the Reliant Scimitar.

A key part for the +2 was the front sidelights, they were bespoke and that was quite a rarity in those days.

Mike
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PostPost by: Melodyk » Tue Sep 12, 2017 6:08 pm

It does seem odd that the whole screen would be different with very early and later cars. More likely just the trim/rubber and not the glass. It will be interesting to see if the Paul Matty crash pad fits any of our cars as there was no way it would fit ours.
We've just done a round trip to Goodwood Revival from Cornwall without any issues even in this diabolical wet and muddy weather. I love my car even more now!
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PostPost by: RichC » Wed Sep 13, 2017 7:36 am

@ mike ... the +2 front sidelights allegedly came from a Duple coach .. :wink:
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PostPost by: Orsom Weels » Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:15 am

RichC wrote:@ mike ... the +2 front sidelights allegedly came from a Duple coach .. :wink:


Duple were just a coach body builder, & like all the others, they 'used off the shelf' stuff where they could. Some used Rover P6 side light/indicator units, which at a glance, can look quite similar to our +2 units. I have a pal who is heavily in to old coaches & buses, having been involved with them all his working life, & so get to see quite a lot of them. I, nor he, have ever seen a coach sporting +2 side lights :wink: .
I have heard on many occasions that Ron Hickman claimed he had Lucas make the side light/indicator units specifically for the +2 as the costs for that were surprisingly small & it allowed the design to be cleaner than trying to use an existing unit.

Another one of those little details that we may never know all the true facts :?

Regards, Tim
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