Lotus Elan

1970 Sprint Garage find.

PostPost by: Grizzly » Thu May 22, 2014 10:22 am

Thought i'd add a few pictures of what i'm upto with the Elan :)

Had a bit of a dodgy start when i found this........ (the marker circle shows where the crack is :cry: )
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But after sending it off to get welded up (epic job as the valve seats had to come out and be re-cut etc) it looks like this now :) (sorry i was to excited when i got the head back and forgot to take a Picture of the repair)
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So Moving on, while we where having nice weather i thought i'd crack on with the body work, the original plan was to blow in the damaged bits and buff the original paint but after having a proper look at it i decided to do a proper repaint (the Original paint wasn't stuck and was coming off in big sections)

So..... Paint stripping part 1 (forgot to take a pic when stripping it but this is after i fixed the crazing and did the filler on the back)
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Part 2. Seal GRP with Epoxy primer and move onto stripping the front :)
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Part 3. Massive amounts of de wobbling, levelling original GRP seams and repairing the dirty big crack in the front + all its flex cracks. Then Epoxy prime :)
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Part 4. Block the Epoxy with 240's then 320's, Stopper all the pin holes up then re-prime with 2k High build.
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part 5. Flat down High build with 800's Wet/Dry............this was day 1 (half done), i usually make a point of using the same coloured Primer under the top coat and twice i asked for White but was given Grey :( don't know who is the bigger fool, them for not knowing what colour it is or me for not checking the second time before getting it masked and ready..........O well it's on now.
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Part 6. Was finish Flatting and clean....But!!! just finished flatting it out side and it started to rain quite hard so i didn't get a picture before the cover went on :( But you get the idea............ That said the Door's,Bonnet,Boot and pods are painted now :) so its coming along.
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Last edited by Grizzly on Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:31 am, edited 4 times in total.
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:05 am

I painted it a few days ago and went to the Unit today to see how its dried, really pleased :) needs very little polishing (hate Polishing :roll: )

I put the Boot lid into the hole just to see what it looked like :) (not the best picture as there is no boot seal or Buffers on so its at a different angle and looks a bit odd and the flash on my Phone isn't the best)

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PostPost by: Grizzly » Mon Aug 25, 2014 4:57 pm

Just starting to assemble it a bit :)

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happy with how it's going at the moment. It's not proper assembly its more a dry run to see what i'm missing. (i wasn't going to fit the badge until last but i drilled the holes a little tight, pushed it on and can't get it back off :roll: ), i was toying with replacing the rear light lenses (the original has a slight crack in one side) and the Number plate, but after flatting the black off the back of the plate and reapplying then Clear coating the Plate and rear lenses they look good (plus i like the big diamond original reflectors in the Lenses which seem to be very hard to get hold of) the chrome on the Rear lamps are a bit pitted but i'll leave it for now and if they drive me mad i'll repair and paint them chrome.

It still needs to be Colour sanded and Polished but as its been air dried i'll leave that as long as possible (Nothing to do with the fact i hate Polishing cars ;) )
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PostPost by: elansprint71 » Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:46 pm

That bonnet bulge does not look correct- too tall. I know that UK Sprints really should not have a bulge at all but (even if they did) that one is not right.
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:48 am

It's an Illusion :D

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I can assure you its not been played with (i stripped it back to bare GRP so i would have seen any tampering) it did cross my mind to put a flat bonnet on it as i prefer the look but at the same time i know and i'm sure every other Elan enthusiast knows its an S4 converted Sprint (its too early to be a factory built sprint i believe they are late 72 on and on the original qc book it was made in 1970 so could well have had Stromberg's before it was converted) so i belive they all had the bulge and i didn't want to make it Look like a later "Proper" Sprint (If that makes sense) i'm also going to go with the Silver wheels as it was originally.

One thing i noticed when i was doing the paint work was how much was repainted when it was converted, even though it was white had all the holes in the sills filled and painted below the Transfer (the lower lip of the sill was originally Black under the fresh white), both rear 1/4's where repainted at the factory (i assume to fill in the S4 badge holes) and when i stripped the Bumper it was Silver underneath. Which would kinda make sense. On the Up side i can spot an S4-Sprint now at 100 paces :D
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PostPost by: jimj » Tue Aug 26, 2014 12:55 pm

There were certainly "proper" Sprints registered in `71 but how refreshing to find someone determined to not pass something off that`s not genuine. When I see S4s, and even S3s, painted as Sprints, I cringe.
Just this morning I was following a local 2013 diesel A6 with an S6 badge on the back. I know the bloke and he seems such a straightforward sort, so what on earth is he thinking? In the words of the great Shania Twain "It don`t impressa me much."
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Tue Aug 26, 2014 1:20 pm

When i say "Proper" Sprint i mean the cars that where always going to be Sprints not the factory Converted s4 into Sprints, so Black wheels,Flat Bonnet, Key on steering Column and lip under the boot floor :) i will keep this as original as possible with some minor Upgrades such as Halogen head lights etc

It crossed my mind today i've not had the V5 back for it, just spent 15 mins on the phone for them to tell me the previous owner had not sent in the old log book in 1980 odd when they changed there system so they have no record of it.......Great. So £25 and a V62 winging its way to the DVLA.
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PostPost by: trw99 » Tue Aug 26, 2014 2:02 pm

Most of the 79 S4s converted to Sprint spec by the factory had been sitting around outside in the new car park at Hethel for several months. I know of a couple of S4/Sprints that first came off the production line in January 1970.

The chances are that the paintwork (never especially outstanding on cars back then) had to be freshened up a fair bit before the cars were in a fit state to appear in showrooms. Prising off the sill strips and S4 badges probably caused some paint defects too, as stated above. A handful of S4s were returned by vociferous dealers to be converted to Sprint spec, after the launch of the Sprint in February 1971.

More 'ere: http://www.lotuselansprint.com/index.asp?pageid=41810

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PostPost by: Grizzly » Tue Aug 26, 2014 2:35 pm

I know a fair bit of the History as my car was a one owner (the same guy also assembled the car) this one was first Built in 1970 (as per QC book) then it sat in Kit form at Foley Park Motors until early 71 when the Previous owner wrote to Lotus asking for a Mono White Sprint and this one was returned to the factory where it was converted to Sprint spec, it was then Assembled by the previous owner and registered in 1972 (that is what he told me, handy being able to talk to the guy who originally bought it )

what's a bit odd is its on a J plate which is 1970 if i'm not mistaken? and i also have a +2 on a 1970 J which was converted to a S130 spec by the factory (i didn't know that had been converted until i found out about the Sprint and checked that one as it's an odd white with a White roof S130)

I didn't realise there was only 79 S4 - Sprints so that makes it rarer than the factory Built Sprint :P

As far as i'm aware the only paint that was done outside the factory was the front Valance because of stone chips, that said the original paint was ok but it just wasn't stuck and was pealing off in big sections.
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PostPost by: Grizzly » Tue Aug 26, 2014 2:56 pm

The only Picture of my +2 on this computer is a really old one from the day i bought it and we got it back to the house (about 1996) its an early sprung down headlight one with Big valve head / webers and at that point very stuck brakes / stuck Clutch :)
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PostPost by: Elanconvert » Tue Aug 26, 2014 4:32 pm

jimj wrote:When I see S4s, and even S3s, painted as Sprints, I cringe.
Jim
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there y'go, jim..........have a good cringe on me!!!! 8)

:D fred
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1970 S4 dhc big valve
1973 Ginetta G15
1967 Ginetta G4 [sadly now sold]
1959 lotus elite type 14
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PostPost by: jimj » Tue Aug 26, 2014 4:51 pm

Aw, thanks Fred, I enjoy a good cringe. But you haven`t got "Sprint" on your sidestripes so you must be a proper bloke after all.
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PostPost by: Elanconvert » Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:16 pm

yes, and I have kept the S4 badges......
however, at the risk of causing possible apoplexy, I admit that the car has a big valve head, and dellortoes!!!!

I won't even mention that when it comes to repaint time, I will be changing to gold leaf colours, and a flat bonnet....... :evil:

:lol: :lol: :lol:

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1970 S4 dhc big valve
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PostPost by: rcraven » Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:32 pm

I've got what is probably an S4/Sprint, but I've never been sure what I'm supposed to be looking at in checking for the apparently distinctive lip at the rear so I'm not sure whether I've got it or not.
Would someone please explain, preferably with a photo?
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PostPost by: jimj » Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:50 pm

Fred, no apoplexy from me, or no more than usual. My S3 has a Sprint engine and a Voight `box `cos I like it and that`s that. You have whatever colours you like but it`s other`s pretence I find objectionable. Imagine a Cortina GLX (?) owner with a green flash and quarter bumpers, there must be one, how sad?
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P.S. I quite like the yellow over white
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