Lotus Elan

Elan S4 front section, what needs repair?

PostPost by: djb222 » Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:07 pm

The front section of the Elan is now stripped of paint. In this video I will show you the areas which need re glassing and maybe a new section bonding in, before I can apply a tissue layer.

Adding a new repair section to the NSF seems like the way to go, however it would appear that it would adjoin a previous "bad" repair ( see video). If anyone has any words of wisdom or have tackled a repair like this advice is appreciated.

I have managed to get a copy of the Fibre glass repair bible, which should prove handy.

https://youtu.be/VqPSrZbpJtw
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:29 pm

Fascinating video.
The `mystery` holes look to be were the Tenax studs goes for the tonneau cover.
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PostPost by: djb222 » Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:55 pm

Thanks Eric,

I thought something was missing when I trial fitted the tonneau...
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PostPost by: nmauduit » Mon Apr 01, 2019 6:28 pm

looks like whoever repaired the front did it like it were sheet metal (heavy use of grinder, butt jointed panels, liberal use of filler...) - one thing you may need to figure out first is the quality level you're aiming at... then if not done already you may want to assess the compliance to original body lines (vs.say amount of filler required) with the help of a long (1 meter) flexible ruler or something the like.

As for the crash pad, they can be difficult to remove in one piece depending the amount of sun they have endured... the foam can be quite sticky and access may require some ingenuity.

Brace for a long distance job, ... and don't give up !
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PostPost by: djb222 » Tue Apr 02, 2019 9:43 am

I'm certainly in for the long haul and am aiming for a high quality finish.

As you stated obtaining the correct lines and body profile will be a bit of a challenge. If the off side is accurate, and that's a big iff, I may be able to make a template, unless of course someone has accurate measurements!
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PostPost by: PaulJ » Wed Jun 12, 2019 8:52 am

Do not despair
What you have looks essentially sound, dont go cutting anything out, what I would do

Firstly Get yourself paper overalls, and a good mask, its going to go everywhere

Make sure rear of panels has been reinforced around any crack or repaired area, If in doubt grind it out with grinder with flexi disk and redo glasswork

With your heavily damaged or undulating areas grind out damage after back has been reinforced, smooth or feather edge the surface, Some of what you think is filler may be gelcoat if its really hard, Filler is essentially polyester resin and a chalk like substance so is always softer than surrounding areas,
layers of crop strand over the top and reprofile to shape, remember the wings actually have flatter areas on them, You can be quite aggresive, P40, P60 etc
2 layers tissue over the whole lot, reprofile lightly trying to ensure you don't go through it
Gelcoat with added wax in styrene, Don't use flowcoat as its a bit to thin, TIP, use white but tint it with a colour, suggest yellow, Always weigh and measure gelcoat and hardner 2% gives you about 20 - 30 min working time, Tinting helps ensure that everything is mixed uniformly, If you need more gelcoat tint a different colour so you can see when you are going through when sanding. Its difficult to only gelcoat small areas as sanding will always effect other areas. You can guidecoat, simply use flat black aerosol and mist on, Sand with P80 to 120, Finish with P180, Then move onto high build primers, Always sand dry

Its loads of work but very satisfying

PM me if you want a chat
Cheers Paul
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