Lotus Elan

New member in Devon starting the search for a plus 2

PostPost by: RichC » Wed Jan 17, 2018 5:17 pm

if you're looking at it probably worth noting the engine number on the V5 . The cam cover indicates the engine is pre 1968 . some folk worry about numbers not matching :wink:
higher ride at back could be replacemnt (spyder) chassis.
it isn't just a case of a respray like with metal cars . .... a proper preparation of the GRP is essential and then respray by someone competent with GRP . Nothing less than £8k IMHO for proper respray and probably more if you want it done properly
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PostPost by: Hawksfield » Wed Jan 17, 2018 7:06 pm

Hi All

Is it my old eyes or Is there some repair work around piston 3 and 4 inlet manifolds (mattys photo's).

A close look is a must when offered as a trade sale
Regards

John

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PostPost by: MarkDa » Wed Jan 17, 2018 7:40 pm

I'm afraid that 'Trade Sale' is word magic for a car dealer if the purchaser is a private individual.
Unless the dealer declares defects then he's responsible for anything that happens in 6 months unless he can prove that they weren't there at sale time through a rigourous inspection process
If the car is being sold demonstrably discounted from normal market value with known fauits a dealer may be able to avoid this general warranty.
All bets are off of course if the buyer is a dealer, but why advertise in a retail forum.
I'm going that way tomorrow so I'll call in and see what's what.
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PostPost by: JonB » Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:04 pm

Hawksfield wrote:Is it my old eyes or is there some repair work around piston 3 and 4 inlet manifolds (mattys photo's).


I don't think your eyes are at fault. Jolly good spot if you ask me.

manifold.jpg and


Ringed in yellow: 1 & 2 have strengthening buttresses whereas 3 & 4 do not. There's also what looks like welding where the inlet joins the head. Ignore the red arrows, I added those because I originally thought the oil leak was a vertical weld of some sort. After applying some brightening, though, it became a bit more obvious.
Late 1972 Elan Plus 2S 130/5 - UK - Unit 50/1115L
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PostPost by: James72 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 10:07 am

Definitely not worth the trip, thanks for the heads up.
There is a Bronze/Brown car a bit nearer in Reading. Currently on eBay for £14995. XVV 448L.
Can’t make my mind up whether I like the colour !
Anyone know the car ?
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PostPost by: JonB » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:13 pm

I can make observations based on the pictures in the listing. I'm being picky, though.

  • The interior looks like it was oatmeal originally, but it's been vinyl painted black. I think this looks good, especially the seats, and I am considering doing this to mine as the vinyl on the driver's seat looks a bit worn.
  • Door trim is non standard (looks really naff IMHO), and the ashtrays were left in oatmeal which does not match. I bet they just got some plain black vinyl and wrapped the trims in it. If you go and see it, feel along the bottom 1/3 of the door trim. If it feels like there is carpet under there, the original trim is present.
  • Nice new carpets.
  • Non standard steering wheel (expensive to replace if you want original).
  • Centre console looks retrimmed (and the rear arm rests, too). It would have the same texture as the seats if it had been vinyl painted.
  • I think the wheels have been sprayed. They are supposed to show aluminium on the radial ridges.
  • Dashboard looks to be in great shape.
  • Roofline gutter trims missing.
  • Windscreen surround missing (should be chrome). Windscreen appears to be bonded onto the frame with no finishing trim at all. Expensive.
  • Front "moustache" trims missing. Expensive.
  • Missing badges on the body - "PLUS 2", "S130/5", "Lotus World Championship" and finally "L O T U S" (separate letters) across the boot lid.
  • Looks like it may have an oil leak (common!)
  • Non standard air filter. Will draw hot air into the engine from the engine bay. Original cold air ducting missing, wonder if the old air filter is still in the nose cone?
  • Possibly has electronic ignition.
  • Missing hot water catch tank from radiator.

I doubt their "predicted mid £60k in 3 years" claim. Nonsense. However, it may be a solid car if you are not concerned about the missing / unoriginal bits (which would cost a fair amount to replace / reinstate). History is good to have but it would have been nice if they'd said when the "older restoration" was done.

Compare it with this one https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/253270521361 which will show you what the black interior trim should look like.
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PostPost by: James72 » Mon Jan 22, 2018 10:52 pm

Excellent critique, I hadn’t noticed half of that! Handy haggling ammo.

I’ve asked for some more info on the resto and rebuild. Response so far is they think it’s a spyder chassis and will get back to with details of work and engine rebuild.
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PostPost by: JonB » Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:56 am

By all means haggle, but I expect you will not get the money off that it will cost you to correct the points I made. On the other hand, it has been for sale for quite a while.

Maybe, on seeing and driving it, you will fall in love with it. Kind of what happened to me, and I still consider myself reasonably lucky as I paid 11 for mine and there was very little wrong with it that I didn't spot (despite not being able to look underneath it) or expect.

However, the old advice still stands - don't buy the first one you see; or at least, have a look at someone else's car so you can find out what to expect. (I say this, but of course I bought the first one! But I had been able to look over another one beforehand - a very good example - thanks to the forum.)
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Tue Jan 23, 2018 8:21 am

JonB

"there was very little wrong with it that I didn't spot (despite not being able to look underneath it) or expect."

Really?

John :wink:
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PostPost by: JonB » Tue Jan 23, 2018 8:51 am

john.p.clegg wrote:JonB

"there was very little wrong with it that I didn't spot (despite not being able to look underneath it) or expect."

Really?

John :wink:


Yes, really. Sorry if I sound like I am blowing my own trumpet - let me explain.

I expected to have to do the uprights, trunnions and front ball joints / track rod ends. I smelled the gear oil coming out of the diff on the test drive (thought it was the gearbox, at the time). I knew there was excessive play in the N/S front wheel bearing. The small oil leaks in the engine bay were obvious. The engine ran well with no blue smoke. All the electrics worked, apart from the clock. The condition of the dashboard and interior was obvious. I was able to check it had a Spyder chassis as advertised, and I knew I would want to put on CV jointed driveshafts at some point as the doughnuts were a little marginal.

I didn't notice the worn out N/S outer driveshaft, as it did not show any play when I tried to rock it about and I don't recall hearing any clonking on the test drive. I also didn't notice all of the paint blemishes - I saw the pinholes on the rear O/S wing but not the rest of it. That said, I am not worried as it looks great. None of these blemishes are immediately obvious; you need to look close to see them. I also didn't know that the headlights tripped the thermal cutouts all the time due to bad earths, but this was easy and cheap to put right.

However, the point I will make is that I was lucky. There could have been any number of nasties waiting for me (might still be!) and so I would not recommend trusting to luck, especially if you are a newcomer to maintaining classic cars. For my part, I've had several Spitfires before and done most jobs on them, so I was confident I could correct any problems on the Elan. So far, and with the help of this great forum and its members, I've not been proven wrong. :)

I think that everything else my Elan needs is pretty standard for a 42 year old car that's not been restored recently. It is remarkably original apart from the chassis, and this is something I like about it. I have come across very few "DPO" bodges, but many examples of worn parts. Even the wiring loom is relatively undisturbed. I'd suggest that worn out parts will be encountered with any Plus 2 you buy, especially one from a non specialist dealer or private sale, and especially one that costs less than £20k.
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Tue Jan 23, 2018 9:08 am

JonB

Fair enough , you seem to be going full steam ahead with it , keep up the good work...

John :wink:
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PostPost by: JonB » Sun Jan 28, 2018 12:14 pm

And by the way.. I looked at my head and it has the same missing buttresses on 3 & 4 intakes. Maybe it's normal?
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Tue Jan 30, 2018 11:46 pm

I called into Matty's today for some parts and had a quick look at the red +2.
It absolutely needs a full strip paint job but the substrate looks sound enough.
Apparently it is a nice enough runner and was bought for sale as is rather than refurb. It could be used as it stands if you could live with the look!
I guess there isn't enough value in +2s yet to warrant dealer rebuild costs.
Not for the inexperienced I'd say and probably a bit much money anyway, presumably they will be making a profit [nothing wrong with that of course] so if you wanted this much work then buy privately.
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