Lotus Elan

Convert Rhd On Lhd

PostPost by: emmapil » Sat Jan 03, 2004 1:14 pm

:unsure: :D I'm going to buy a 1971 Elan Sprint on RHD version. I already spoke to Paul Matty to convert the car in LHD but his quotation, in my opinion, is quite high.
Has anyone been already involved in this experience?
How many and which new parts do I have to buy?
All suggestion will be very appreciate.
Thanks in advance, Luca - Italy
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PostPost by: Elan5139 » Sat Jan 03, 2004 3:51 pm

:angry:
Don't do it!!
If you want a LHD buy a LHD!
The cars should be keept as they left the factory.
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PostPost by: steve » Sat Jan 03, 2004 3:51 pm

it won't be the part's that make it seem expensive it will be the labour figure :( mr elan 5139 thats a bit out of order me thinks ,how many cars are still out there as they left the factory :huh: not many :o you will be telephoning chris neils next having a pop at them saying they should not cut roofs off +2's :P ;) and mick miller for spraying them in 2 pack paint !and spyder for making non origonal parts , if emmapil want's to buy an elan and convert it he / she should be helped not abused !
"everyone wants a piece of me and it hurts "<br>when my right leg starts shaking thats when i know i am having fun !
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PostPost by: gino1 » Sat Jan 03, 2004 4:56 pm

Hi all,
Who knows how many left hand drive elans were produced in the various types?

Gino
1965 Elan S2 Roadster
1965 Elan S3 Coupè
1967 Elan S3 Coupè
1968 Elan S4 Coupè
1969 Elan +2
1968 Lotus Seven S3
1961 Ford Anglia
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PostPost by: type36lotus » Sat Jan 03, 2004 5:29 pm

I have to somewhat agree with Elan5139, but for other reasons. I feel you would be better off finding a left hand drive if that is what you desire. These cars can take enough time and money simply to put right without adding the expense/time to reconfigure. As far a originality, the more the better for me. Chopping off tops is too far. Replacing a defective chassis with a better one is my limit (I kept mine with it's original chassis tho). Even if you keep a car "Original" much still gets replaced out of necessity even with a run of the mill restoration.

Mike Geiger
66 Elan Coupe'
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PostPost by: Jolly Jumper » Sat Jan 03, 2004 5:29 pm

<!--QuoteBegin-emmapil+Jan 3 2004, 01:14 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (emmapil @ Jan 3 2004, 01:14 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'><!--QuoteEBegin--> :unsure:  :D I'm going to buy a 1971 Elan Sprint on RHD version. I already spoke to Paul Matty to convert the car in LHD but  his quotation, in my opinion, is quite high.
Has anyone been already involved in this experience?
How many and which new parts do I have to buy?
All suggestion will be very appreciate.
Thanks in advance, Luca - Italy [/quote]
Hi Emma ;)

Well, the most important thing you need is a LHD pedal box - they are rare. And of course a new dashboard.
I don't agree a conversion should be avoided in order to keep the cars original. This is nonsense. The Elan has been built as a LHD, so converting it from RHD to LHD is acceptable.
However, do you really need LHD?
I drive a RHD Elan in Germany (since more than 10 years), and it is no problem at all! The Elan is so small (narrow) that you always find some space to have a look past cars driving in front of you.
Really, it is perfectly allright. If the car you have is in good condition, keep it that way and save the money. If you take it apart for restoration anyway, converting it is an option but still I would say use the money for other things in the restoration.

Just my thoughts!

Regards
Jolly
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PostPost by: jredgrave » Sat Jan 03, 2004 6:40 pm

I'm in the process of doing exactly this. In my case I ended up with a project that had a LHD chassis and a RHD body, so I had to pick one.
The expensive parts you will need are steering rack, pedal assembly and dashboard. You will also have to redo some of the brake plumbing and clutch plumbing, get a longer throttle cable and maybe replace the oil pressure gauge feed. You will also need access to templates or a LHD car to figure out where to drill holes for things in the firewall. And then there's also all the other things you will find that need to be fixed while everything is apart ;-)
I'd also suggest getting a LHD car rather than converting. It's likely to be cheaper in the long run.

jason
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PostPost by: gino1 » Sat Jan 03, 2004 10:14 pm

Hi Luca,

I had the same intentions as you to change my Elan to a LHD just after purchasing it and did even ask Mick Miller to quote me the conversion. The price was reasonable but we would have had to discuss the change sometime in 2008 as he was overburdened with restorations that he just didn't have the time.
I did later meet him and Sue at Saxmundham to discover Elans everywhere in the courtyard waiting for restoration. (Beautiful sight)

I think that if Mick Miller had the time to carry out the conversion immediately I would have probably done it but now I'm glad he didn't as I can totally agree with Jolly as my elan is also a RHD and in our caotic italian traffic can drive it quite easily and saftely.

Pensaci bene!

Gino
1965 Elan S2 Roadster
1965 Elan S3 Coupè
1967 Elan S3 Coupè
1968 Elan S4 Coupè
1969 Elan +2
1968 Lotus Seven S3
1961 Ford Anglia
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PostPost by: fatboyoz » Sun Jan 04, 2004 4:03 am

Luca,
If you are going to the trouble of going overseas, or chanel, to get a car, why not go to the States and get one already configured for driving on the wrong side of the road :lol:. I believe that they know a few things about maintaining the marque! :P
Colin.
'68 S4 DHC
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PostPost by: marcfuller » Sun Jan 04, 2004 4:29 am

If you are looking for parts, there is a current listing for usable LHD steering and pedal box parts from a +2 on eBay. Link-
<a href='http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=34206&item=2452159320' target='_blank'>http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAP...item=2452159320</a>

(He is good seller, I bought an S3 Elan from him)
-Marc '66 Elan DHC (36/6025)
http://www.lotuselan.us
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PostPost by: gino1 » Sun Jan 04, 2004 11:29 am

Colin,
It's not the wrong side of the road!
Most of the world can't be driving on the wrong side of the road ;)
Gino
1965 Elan S2 Roadster
1965 Elan S3 Coupè
1967 Elan S3 Coupè
1968 Elan S4 Coupè
1969 Elan +2
1968 Lotus Seven S3
1961 Ford Anglia
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PostPost by: emmapil » Sun Jan 04, 2004 5:43 pm

:) GUYS!!! Thanks to everybody for your help. I'm actually more confuse then before!!!
I made a list of what I need and I think (perhaps I will make a mistake), it's not so complicate. I know the Elan share several steering parts with Triumph Spitfire ...or not? I already have a LHD steering rack. I agree about originality but I don't want 'federal' cars, to complicate bring those from US. I already owned a RHD car and actually I didn't have so much fun on the "wrong" side of the road. Will see; first of all I'll go to pick up the car and then I will decide.

Thanks again for your help, Luca
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PostPost by: type36lotus » Tue Jan 06, 2004 1:45 am

Luca,

A little more information for you. On my S3 Coupe' the body was already drilled for either left or right hand drive. I belive (no firm knowlege) that the dashboard (fascia) are mirror imaged for left/right hand drive. Depending on condition you may be replacing that anyway. As someone ealrier stated, rack (which you have) and pedals will be the difficult parts. Someone on the yahoo list once mentioned that he converted his right hand pedals to left hand. you might want to do a search. At least with left hand drive the brake and clutch master cylinders will be out from under the carbs, thus eaiser to deal with.

Good luck, have fun,
Mike Geiger
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PostPost by: elanman3 » Tue Jan 06, 2004 1:33 pm

Hi Luca,

I was in Luca earlier this year for a weeks holiday. What a great place, medievel walled town, good wine and lovely women to look at (the wife was with me). Maybe someone should organise a rally to see Luca's project.

As Mike was saying about converting the peddle box. I had my peddle box off and stripped earlier this year. The peddles are made from 1" x 1/4" flat bar and welded to a boss which rides on a shaft across the center of the box. The flat bar (if I remember correctly) is welded to the boss at a slight angle. The bar could be cut off the boss and rewelded at a slight angle in the opposite direction quite easily.

ColinT
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PostPost by: steve » Tue Jan 06, 2004 6:45 pm

dont tony thompsons do a left hand drive pedal box ! i am sure they do worth a call 01664 812454 i think from memory
"everyone wants a piece of me and it hurts "<br>when my right leg starts shaking thats when i know i am having fun !
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