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Giugiaro Esprit S1 Full Restoration


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59 minutes ago, Lotusfab said:

@Fridge. Have you got new door seals fitted?

Yes, and I've yet to set the doors. Putting that awkward task off. Waiting for a fine day with a few hours to spend.

I left the doors shut over the winter to compress the new seals.

I may try this afternoon if the weather holds after my teleconference.

1 hour ago, 910Esprit said:

Must have nice outlook of the Valley Gardens from that property!

I would if it wasn't for those trees. You can see Valley Gardens from the drone though 😁

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Did you keep the old seals? If so you might be better to put them back on. I have the same problem. The new seals are made of a different rubber and the dimensions are off. This creates a lot of resistance and stops the doors from closing flush. If you adjust brackets so the door is flush the catches slip and destroy the paint. Maybe someone will make the correct seals at some point. £70 each for seals that don’t work is annoying!

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I keep everything from a restoration. Even the dust until I've time to sift through it in case rare fittings have found there way in amongst it. Worn parts that may be OEM are always kept for reference, as remanufactured stuff can be different as you say. I recently went back to look at the original shock absorbers I took off it.

I'm not sure the car had door seals though. It was in a bit of a state. Though largely complete and original. I know others who have fitted the new rubbers and have made them work with reasonable success. I just need to spend some quality time adjusting the doors and frames. Hoping that 2 full winters with doors have allowed the rubber seals to compress.

I've just had the S1 weighted on a weighbridge whilst waiting for a pal to have his VX200 checked in for some paintwork. Came to 1,025kg with 1/2 tank of fuel.

IMG_20200701_130843381.jpg

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Mmm, thats where mine came from. Apparently there are two types I bought mine a long time ago. They are definitely wrong. There is far too much excess rubber in the perimeter. I’m glad your ones work. Maybe David will be lucky as well.
I bought a new seal for my Turbo, same problem and old one now back on. 
I recall I had trouble fitting it on the S1 because of the excess amount of rubber length. I had to compress it to fit. There is far too much pressure on the door catch to get get a flush door fit. The catch eventually slips and ruins the paint.

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On 16/05/2020 at 01:34, Fridge said:

21.     The Missile Bay

Progress was waylaid over the winter whilst filming in Spain for Kawasaki, and on return the UK coronavirus lockdown took its toll in many ways, leaving the rear luggage area half re-trimmed for a few months. Apart from the rear bulkhead carpet behind the engine cover having rotted the original rear luggage boards and carpet were in very good condition, with only a little wear. Though the nearside inner wheel arch cover and the rear quarterlight window ‘shelves’ were missing. Three years earlier the carpet covering the bulkhead was removed in clumps using a paint scraper with only the upper portions around the window being intact.

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Having considered buying a carpet set, I decided to see if I could obtain something more in keeping with what mine had. Over a couple of weeks I acquired 10 samples of corded and box weave carpet from various suppliers, with a couple of them extremely similar to that to the original.

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I settled on an anthracite cord with a grey fleck which was about the right thickness to offer both soundproofing, resilience to wear and also be malleable enough to cope with the tight corners around the boot boards.

Paul Clapham allowed me to examine and photograph the rear quarterlight ‘shelves’ from his original S1, and a template made from which the plywood could be cut.

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New marine grade plywood was bought from my local builders merchant and the old boot boards used as templates. The carpet from the old boot boards was carefully peeled from underneath to expose the wooden edge, and used to draw a template on the plywood with a sharp pencil, then overwritten in dark ink, ready to be cut using a jigsaw.

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My local trimmer made the inner wheel arch covers, using the inner rear wheelarch cover on the offside was missing as a pattern to remake the opposite side. Also edging the window ‘shelf’ carpets and bulkhead window to the original style and specification,

Whilst that was being done I test fitted the boards before spraying them in primer and given a coating of satin black to replicate the originals. Then cut the new carpet to fit, using strong trimmers glue and clamped in place using lengths of wood I’d used to make the storage box for the rear hatch glass a few years earlier.

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The trimmer delivered the edged carpet after making a supreme effort to measure the rear bulkhead and window aperture. The seat belt reels had to be removed to fit the bulkhead carpet, which took a few hours, but its addition has been welcome, after been driving the car around the previous 6 months without it my ears are certainly thankful!

The rear quarterlight shelves were also completed with correctly shaped and edge carpet and glued down. Deciding to add a smear at the seat belt end to make sure it all remained flat. Originally the glue wasn’t applied to the wood around the seat belt retainer cut-out.

 

The rear upright boards were fitted to cover the backs of the rear lights, and fixed in place to the refurbished angle brackets taken from the original boards.

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With the car being tucked away in the garage the whole job spanned the winter months, but the results matching the original boards perfectly.

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Finished off with the battery box top and stainless steel fixings completed the rear luggage compartment and the S1 was another stage further to completion.

The wife has told me we have one of those period BA bags, maybe it needs a new storage place!

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Well done. My seals have been in there about 5 years and still haven’t compressed. The test will be later with use when excessive pressure can cause the catches to slip and destroy the paint. I have come to the conclusion the new seals I have must be replaced.

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As I've said before Fabian, I used thin and shaped rubber as friction pads, rather the abrasive original mesh. So I don't see them moving, and if they do, which I've had to do during adjustment, the rubber doesn't scratch the paintwork. Something I've learnt in over 34 years of old car ownership.

I'm just glad the doors are set. I just need to move the window winder mechanisms back a few millimetres along with the check straps, which will provide central and therefore greater leverage of the drop glass.

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So, Mr. Restoration. Any tips on refitting the doors? I was thinking of something thick that wouldn't mar the paint, such as towels, plastic signs, etc. to position the door int he opening properly, then reach in and tighten the bolts. Luckily my windscreen is out, so the top bolt would be easy to access. The lower bolt would require getting into the Lotus position.

Thanks,

Bill

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6 hours ago, Fridge said:

As I've said before Fabian, I used thin and shaped rubber as friction pads, rather the abrasive original mesh. So I don't see them moving, and if they do, which I've had to do during adjustment, the rubber doesn't scratch the paintwork. Something I've learnt in over 34 years of old car ownership.

I'm just glad the doors are set. I just need to move the window winder mechanisms back a few millimetres along with the check straps, which will provide central and therefore greater leverage of the drop glass.

If the widow is having trouble moving ( usually drivers side) I spent months working on this problem. I adjusted the frame extensively without the motor mechanism so minimal force was needed to raise and lower. I restored the motor and it still would not work sticking or going very slow. In the end I bought a new AC Delco corvette motor installed it and it worked perfectly. Why? I concluded the permanent magnets in the old motor had demagnetised which reduced the torque. I had the same issue on the Turbo drivers side. They all work perfectly now with new motors!

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Hi @bgalbraith, well you're in for some "fun" that's for sure.

I constructed the doors on the car. First fitting the aluminium door bars onto new phospher-bronze hinges I had made by a local machine shop. With the bars firmly on the car I then built them up. Adding the door skins, and then internal mechanisms.

After getting those working as best I could at that stage I set about adjusting their alignment with the body shell.

I had some very thin rubber sheet from restoring the heater box, which I had used to renew its baffles. Using the door catch that fits into the door jam I cut out its shape and punched out 2 bolt holes. This was to prevent the door catch slipping, but to also allow it to move during the adjustment process without marking the door jam.

I then used bubble wrap in the door aperture to protect the sills, and paintwork. I have fitted the extruded rubber seal that fits around the window frames found on later series cars, so that protected the underside of the door jam at the top.

To aid control during the alignment process I used a thin piece of flat wood wrapped in bubble wrap as a lever wedged between the underside of the rear end of the door and the door rubber to maintain pressure and allow me to lift or lower the door as required.

Importantly I found that the door has a tendency to move forwards whilst it's being adjusted, so I also packed out the front shutline with cardboard, folded over enough to match the desired gap when it gets gradually compressed.

As you say, the two hinge bolts are accessible from outside of the car with the window wound down. However, if you have a helper then that makes the adjustment process easier of course. After a series of trials I found that the upper nut didn't need to be slackened off as much as the lower nut. Holding the door in position using the makeshift wooden lever I tightened the lower nut first then the upper nut. After 3 attempts to check the alignment and shutline I'd got it right. With any final finessing done by adjusting the door catch. Slackening them off a touch on their rubber friction pads and making micro adjustments as required. The exact same method was used on the passenger door.

Hope that helps Bill. I had to choose my time carefully, when the weather was favourably warm to allow me some comfort during this slow process, done outside on the driveway. I don't think you'll have that problem in Florida or using your own personal Hanger 18.

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Hi @Lotusfab I too overhauled and regreased the window motors, when I tackled all of the motors whilst waiting for the body shell to be returned.

However, the most effective addition was installing @bgalbraith's relay modification into the switching circuit. Powering the window motors direct from the battery using a dedicated 12V supply into the cabin for high load uses.

Though not as smooth as in my modern Honda as Audi, the windows worked a lot quicker.

Once I've adjusted the check strap and motor plinth I'll report back on their efficiency.

I picked up spare motors recently if need be.

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34 minutes ago, Fridge said:

Hi @Lotusfab I too overhauled and regreased the window motors, when I tackled all of the motors whilst waiting for the body shell to be returned.

However, the most effective addition was installing @bgalbraith's relay modification into the switching circuit. Powering the window motors direct from the battery using a dedicated 12V supply into the cabin for high load uses.

Though not as smooth as in my modern Honda as Audi, the windows worked a lot quicker.

Once I've adjusted the check strap and motor plinth I'll report back on their efficiency.

I picked up spare motors recently if need be.

Sorry, I'm not taking credit for that modification.It was mark Pfeffer's work. I was just reposting it on my web site, www.holycows.net/Lotus

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1 hour ago, Fridge said:

Hi @Lotusfab I too overhauled and regreased the window motors, when I tackled all of the motors whilst waiting for the body shell to be returned.

However, the most effective addition was installing @bgalbraith's relay modification into the switching circuit. Powering the window motors direct from the battery using a dedicated 12V supply into the cabin for high load uses.

Though not as smooth as in my modern Honda as Audi, the windows worked a lot quicker.

Once I've adjusted the check strap and motor plinth I'll report back on their efficiency.

I picked up spare motors recently if need be.

I tried powering them directly and bypassed the original circuits, it made no difference. My S1 works perfectly now with the original wiring because the motors are so much better. The turbo wiring is already upgraded with relays and still would not work properly. It was really slow and painful to watch. As I say really quick and  perfect now with the new motors.

I think Paul Coleman is replacing the motors ,on his S1. Lets see if this cures the longstanding window problem.

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These "long-standing window problems" you mention seem to be very selective. I know quite a few S1 owners, both original and restored, who don't have issues.

My mechanism just needs tweaking and they'll run fine.

There was a marked and measurable difference in powering them directly, so perhaps you've been unlucky Fabian, with cars having had a lot of hard use? Mine, though tatty, had been quite well looked after in the main.

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On 05/07/2020 at 08:22, Fridge said:

As I've said before Fabian, I used thin and shaped rubber as friction pads, rather the abrasive original mesh. So I don't see them moving, and if they do, which I've had to do during adjustment, the rubber doesn't scratch the paintwork. Something I've learnt in over 34 years of old car ownership.

I'm just glad the doors are set. I just need to move the window winder mechanisms back a few millimetres along with the check straps, which will provide central and therefore greater leverage of the drop glass.

What kind of rubber and thickness would you recommend? I have a local supplier that can make them in any thickness and almost any material, including nitrile, neoprene, viton, natural etc.

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That's very handy to know @Freemason

I find the door aperture rubber seals are fine. The doors just needed final adjustment, which I've been putting off as it's quite a fiddly job, and has taken quite a few attempts.

They appear to be over long, but just need hammering into the corners with a rubber mallet, then the doors closing for long periods to get the rubber into shape. I did this over 2 winters. I find it just takes patience before the doors fit properly.

It is a common problem however, as my 1960s open sportscar door and window seals are no longer available and the usual recommended alternative isn't quite correct.

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