Restoration Impossible: Starting Work on the Body

Jan 10, 2017 update to the Lotus Elan project car

Here is what we are starting with. We have found almost every inch of used (and one new) panels we need to restore the mangled original body.

With our ramp truck and some other projects finished up, we are getting back to our Lotus in earnest. We have decided to tackle the body next for a variety of reasons.

First, we need an unrestored but perfectly straight chassis (like the one we found) to bolt the body down, to make sure we keep the various pieces in the proper location when we reassemble the pieces of the body. We don’t want to do this bodywork on an already restored chassis, as it will be rather messy.

Another consideration is once we piece the body back together and get the rough bodywork and gel coat done, we will turn it over to The Body Werks for final paint work. Since this final paint work will take a couple of months, this gives us time to restore the chassis and four corners.

Get all the latest Classic Motorsports project car news in your mailbox six times a year. Subscribe now.


Join Free
Join our community to easily find more Lotus project updates.

Reader comments:

Woody
Woody MegaDork
Jan. 10, 2017 6:18 p.m.

Woo-Hoo!

wheelsmithy
Jan. 10, 2017 8:51 p.m.

Things like this are exactly why I ponied up for the CM subscription...and the Mini, and the Tornado, and so on, and so on. Looking forward to updates.

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
Jan. 10, 2017 11:27 p.m.

Thanks guys! We made more progress today and have the left rear cut out. It went quicker and easier than I thought it would.

You'll need to log in to post.

All 1964 Lotus Elan updates

1 day ago

Restoration Impossible: Fiberglassing the Bottom

1 day ago

We thought we made good progress. Then we flipped the car over.

2 weeks ago

Restoration Impossible: Starting Fiberglass Work

2 weeks ago

Learn how to make fiberglass repairs.

3 weeks ago

Restoration Impossible: Working on the Wire Framework

3 weeks ago

Our project Lotus Elan needs some structure repair around the doors.

1 month ago

Restoration Impossible: Making a Trunk Mold

1 month ago

Our Lotus Elan's trunk has a 6-inch hole. Here's how to create the replacement piece.

1 month ago

Restoration Impossible: Grafting in a Whole Quarter of the Body

1 month ago

The left rear quarter of our Elan had been hit hard. Here's how you seamlessly graft in a replacement piece.

1 month ago

Restoration Impossible: Getting the Door Hinges to Work

1 month ago

Our project Lotus Elan is still in the beginning stages of a restoration.

2 months ago

Restoration Impossible: Preparing to Cut the Body

2 months ago

Once you cut, you can't go back.

2 months ago

Restoration Impossible: Starting to Rebuild the Missing Back End

2 months ago

We decided to start our Lotus Elan's restoration with the toughest part first.

2 months ago

Restoration Impossible: Starting Work on the Body

2 months ago

We are getting back into our Lotus in earnest.

10 months ago

Our Elan Gets a Decklid

10 months ago

After lots of searching we find a rare Elan decklid suspiciously close to where we bought our project.

10 months ago

Our Elan Gets Blasted

10 months ago

After a trip to Blast Masters, we see if the fiberglass is salvageable.

10 months ago

One Fresh Elan Engine

10 months ago

With another trip to Twin Cam Sportscars, our Elan's engine is completely refreshed.

11 months ago

A Look Inside Our Lotus Elan's Transmission

11 months ago

We refresh our project Elan's gearbox with the help of Twin Cam Sportscars.

1 year ago

Incredible tranformation: Lotus Elan Carburetors

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan's carburetors get taken from trash to treasure.

1 year ago

Lotus Elan Frame Dilema: Solved

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan's frame was bent and broken. How did we solve the issue?

1 year ago

Soda Blasting Our Lotus Elan

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan takes a trip to Blast Masters to get stripped.

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan Gets Stripped to the Bone

1 year ago

With our Lotus Elan's engine refresh underway, it was time to start disassembly of the rest of the car.

1 year ago

Restoration Impossible: A Look Inside the Elan's Engine

1 year ago

With the help of Twin Cam Sportscars, we tear our Elan's engine apart.

1 year ago

Lotus Parts Pour In

1 year ago

We find lots of parts for our project Elan thanks to our friends.

1 year ago

Finding a Windshield

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan gets some fresh glass.

1 year ago

The Parts Search Begins

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan needs a lot of work and parts. Here's the initial list of what we need.

1 year ago

Figuring Out What We Really Have

1 year ago

After lots of cleaning, we organize our project and assess the situation.

1 year ago

Our Lotus Makes it Home

1 year ago

After dragging our new project to Florida, we begin cleaning it out.

1 year ago

Our Lotus Elan's First Concours Award

1 year ago

Still in pieces, our impossible restoration project attends its first show.

1 year ago

How Not to Load a Lotus

1 year ago

We had to get three-quarters of a lotus from Michigan to Florida.

1 year ago

Restoration: Impossible

1 year ago

Meet our new restoration project: a very rough 1964 Lotus Elan.

The Latest

Classic Motorsports Car Catcher: Series 3 Spider

12 hours ago in News

Did you catch our Alfa Romeo Spider comparison?

Restoration Impossible: Fiberglassing the Bottom

1 day ago in Project Cars

We thought we made good progress. Then we flipped the car over.

Depreciation Station: 2005-'11 Lotus Elise and Exige

1 day ago in Articles

When Lotus first unleashed the Elise some 20 years ago, the automaker’s message was clear: We’re back, baby.

New From SVRA: A Place to Race Old Miatas

6 days ago in News

The SVRA’s new Mazda Miata Heritage Cup is supported by Mazda and open to the 1.6-liter Miatas.

Tech Tips: Fiat 124 Spider

6 days ago in Articles

What does it take to keep one of Fiat's classic roadsters on the street.

Come See Us at Automotive Restorations

1 week ago in News

Come hang out with us and enjoy the views at Automotive Restorations.

Review: Tampa Bay British Car Club Tour

1 week ago in News

We spent the weekend on the road with a bunch of other British car owners.

Mlassic Motorsports Magazine

Subscribe Today

Also get your instant access to the digital edition of Classic Motorsports Magazine!

Learn More
jr5rpkR46CAweEpTH51llo80zK6iiixI