Lotus Elan

+2S 130 Seat Foam replacement

PostPost by: elansprint » Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:00 pm

Alan when i built my Ginetta a good few years ago one of my neighbours was an upholsterer he sent me down to a foam suppliers in "frog island" in the centre of Leicester who cut foam of the correct density to shape and supplied an 1/2 inch soft foam to go on top to provide a good finish to the covered seats
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PostPost by: JimE » Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:52 pm

You could try filling the existing holes in the foam with new foam to strengthen it. That idea was mentioned to me only this week by a trimmer. To replace the foam, oatmeal ambla vinyl, and relaminate the existing oatmeal cord inserts, he quoted a prohibitive £1,500 per + 2s 130 seat!!! A very labour intensive job but his workmanship is excellent. Here are some before and after pictures of the Europa inserts he did. Here, the cloth inserts were relaminated, foam and ambla replaced and millboard fitted underneath the seat bases to stop them collapsing. Also replaced the rear millboard on the driver's side that had split. Cost £400 for both seats. In case anyone is wondering why I didn't replace the cord inserts with new, it is no longer available in this colour. Jim
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PostPost by: elanfan1 » Fri Mar 15, 2019 12:38 am

If I can pass on a tip for cutting and shaping foam.

I’ve seen huge foam blocks being cut in a factory and they just use a hot wire which isn’t really practical in a home situation. Howveverwhat works well is a hand held electric knife (of the type you’d carve your Sunday roast).
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:53 am

lpic0222.jpg and

Here's a Seat Foam that i fitted to my TVR 3000S and 3000M. I bought them from Adrian Venn "exactly TVR".
I have owned 3 different Elan +2s in the past and i'm sure the +2 Seats can be done using the TVR Foams.
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PostPost by: alanr » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:07 am

I have found a website for Adrian Venn but no address.The number suggests Coventry area which is not too far from me so I may give him a call although the TVR foams do look quite a bit different to my +2S130 seat foams from what I can see and would possibly need a bit of cutting and carving.

I have watched various utube videos on building up broken foam in seats with elecric knives and cheese cutters they are all though starting with at least a part good foam. Mine all seems crumbly allover although until I get the seats fully stripped down it is a bit of an unknown. Problem is I daren't take it out until I know which way i am going to jump on this!

I have also now made many phone calls to foam suppliers and classic car trimmers. As I said earlier I have been quoted £1500 to sort the two seat seats which is way to expensive for me but having said that a lot of trimmers are not interested in even quoting for the job!
There are so many different varieties and types of foam and some say that doing anything without the correct foams will be just a temporary bodge job at best. I looking for at least a reasonable looking solution.

I am in no rush and may park the problem for a while and move on to other issues until I get braver towards tacking myself or a solution becomes clearer. Upholstery is not my forte!

Thanks for all the ideas and input...all good stuff and food for thought. :D

Alan.
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:52 am

Hi Alan,
Ah! now you say there is no rush, have you noticed that on Sue Miller`s website she says that she is hoping to produce Plus 2 seat kits soon. If you declare an interest it might speed the process along.
When I did my Series 3 seats, the kit was circa £600.00 and, with a lot more work than I was expecting, produced a good result.
That was 8 years ago and they look good to me.
Eric in Burnley
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PostPost by: alanr » Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:34 am

Hi Eric, thanks for the thought.
Yes I spoke with Sue Miller earlier in the week but unfortunately she said she can't help and was only able to point me to a car upholstery trimmer! :(

Edited to add:-
I have now had a further conversation with Sue and she says that it is now almost a hopeless case with getting her supplier to make +2 seat foams as the market is deemed too small.
Last edited by alanr on Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:01 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:50 am

I have found it's just the Cushion Foams that need replacing. Also the rubber/plastic Pad underneath to support the Cushion.
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PostPost by: mbell » Fri Mar 15, 2019 6:12 pm

On my seat it mainly the central part of the drivers seat that has collapsed, the bolster seem ok. I've had to insert a plastic sheet under the foam between the webbing, as the rubber/plastic pad had broken up. This seems to have stabilized it for the present time.

I wouldn't have thought get the right foam density/firmness would be that difficult and any decent auto upholstery supplier would be well placed to advise.

This might be a good summer job for me to do inside the house when it's too hot to work outside!
'73 +2 130/5 RHD, now on the road and very slowly rolling though a "restoration"
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PostPost by: Bud English » Fri Mar 15, 2019 6:34 pm

Bevels and curves can be done with the careful use of an angle grinder with a 60-80 grit disc. Take light passes and let the speed of the disc do the shaping not the pressure. The foam shapes nicely with a very smooth edge. As you can imagine, it makes a mess. Wear eye protection. Any sharp edges or gouges will show through the vinyl or leather. Practice on some scrap pieces first.

A good upholstery material supplier will have a range of foam densities to chose from. When I replaced the foam in a pair of RV seats I used a very firm foam in the bottom cushion topped with an inch thick pad of memory foam. Quite comfortable even after four to six hours in the saddle. There's probably not enough space to do that on an elan seat though. Maybe a half inch layer would work.
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PostPost by: Davidb » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:20 pm

Are the Plus 2 seats the same as Elan?
The foam was totally collapsed in mine-the seats were excruciating!
I got some "Fitness Equipment Mat" from Home Depot-it is only 3/16th thick but very dense.
I undid the front clips that hold the spring to the frame. Slipped a piece of 1 inch upholstery foam 11x17 inches under the old foam (which was totally collapsed-I should have removed it) and then slid the 3/16th mat between the springs and the foam. Then refastened the spring clips.
It took a couple of days for the foam to settle down but once it had the seat looked, and felt, like new. I can now spend 8-10 hours in it without discomfort.
img_0766.jpg and

I used the clamp to hold the springs away from the foam.
'65 S2 4844
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PostPost by: JonB » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:57 pm

Davidb wrote:Are the Plus 2 seats the same as Elan?


At least the later +2 seats use a different type of foam (as I said earlier on): Dunlopillo.
1973 Elan Plus 2S 130/5 - UK - Chassis 50/1115L
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PostPost by: alan.barker » Sat Mar 16, 2019 6:48 am

lpic0189.jpg and
lpic0214.jpg and
Before you put the Foam on the Springs you need to glue Hessian/ Potatoes sacking to it.
In the photos is the bodge crap that i found on my TVR Seats.
Alan
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PostPost by: alanr » Sat Mar 16, 2019 8:30 am

Alan
Yes that is what I am trying to avoid!
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