free hit
counters
This is why, the stock dash layout is utterly rubbish… - Interior/Exterior/Lights/Glass/ICE/HVAC & Other - The Lotus Forums #ForTheOwners Jump to content


This is why, the stock dash layout is utterly rubbish…


Recommended Posts

...when you are stuck in traffic, in the worst case on an Autobahn, you are “scanning” the instruments in 1 minute steps to look at the health of your precious engine…

Drivers view

post-2-0-47233800-1435569818.jpg

helicopter view

post-2-0-65311400-1435569819.jpg

and to "move your head an Inch" is absolutely uncomfortable. It is also just wrong for a premium car… and serves more the old Lotus picture of unreliable, component cars which they exactly wanted to leave behind with these cars of the third generation. So something has to happen…

I am toying with several ideas.

Does anybody know if it is simple to change the 100mm speedo and rev gauges with 80mm gauges? I would guess the rev counter should be exact like the other before… but what about the speedo? Smith claims, that it should work, if the gear is “SAE screw cable fitting” with a thread of 16mm diameter. Does this fit ? And how is it then calibrated?

Edited by Don.Hasi
Link to comment
Share on other sites


Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

That's an Excel wheel, the stock two spoke flat wheel may be better for visibility but horrible to hold. You could turn the temp gauge upside down?

Thing is you are criticising a product from 40 years ago, it is pointless. In an age before focus groups and when "development" consisted of two blokes driving to Italy and back for a long weekend this is as good as it got. Have you seen a dash from a Lamborghini Jarama or Ferrari 400 from the same period? They are shit.

It isn't a priceless antique, if you can do something that suits you better chop away.

In the garage no-one can hear you scream 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am with you on most of the points. But...these cars are so much ahead their own time. The handling and power is even today on the very plus front. There are so much clever ideas and solutions. So, one is wondering why they have missed something very obvious.

And if we criticise today's electric wagons... Well... The reaction after the heart attack when I saw the needle climbing after I eventually "found" the AC button with values of 140° should allowed ;)

Now I am making the typical progress with one 2steps forward and 1backward...

Oh forgot... The Excel wheel should have the horn button in the middle shouldn't it ?

I have the stock wheel too. The distance from the centre to the top of the crossbar is the same

I am curious whether I will get back it together in working order.... :D

post-5769-0-76721200-1435608519.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I still think the better one was how they fitted the cassette player directly behind the gear stick just to make it near on impossible to get a tape in!

 

Forward thinking....

 

Buddsy

  • Like 1

 

"Belief is the enemy of knowing" - Crrow777

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Porsche had it sussed with the 928, the instrument cluster adjusted with the steering column, so you always had a perfect view. That was in the mid 70's

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have a look for a pre '86 excel dash. It looks like the same fitting, but the temp and oil instruments are above the indicator lamps making them a bit higher. I never have any difficulty seeing the temp.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don, I take it the problem you are having is with the reflection in the dials as much as their position relative to the steering wheel. Have you thought of applying the anti reflection screen protector film that you can get for smart phones and tablets over the dials. It could be an easy fix for your problem and would save you having to chop up your dash.

  • Like 1

Normally Aspirated - and lovin' it!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The last picture shows already a MY85 dash :) I would have thought, it ruins the style more than it obviously does (to me) :)

Unfortunately it is not a plug and play Thing as usual... there are many little things altered in the years. So you see there is constant developing also in this case.


@buddsy: I want so say yes to your No1, but with the technic of today it is simple to add something digital with saving the original look. So it can be easily fixed. For me the problem with the stereo is only half as big because I have an Autoreverse :P

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Colin: the reflections are not that great problem. It is more that the most important gauge, the water gauge is not visible at all and the warning lights neither.

 

But your idea with the film is generally just brilliant  :) I will keep it in mind if the journeys without the roof will bring these problems to daylight

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

https://www.merlinmotorsport.co.uk/s/instruments-gauges/smiths-classic/smiths-classic-electrical-gauges

 

Maybe the above might help you in keeping the look similar but upgrading to something a bit more 21st century  :robo:

 

The layout of the dash on the excel annoyed me sufficiently enough to move the voltage, fuel and additional oil temp gauge to the centre console and dump a few of the useless lights so that it could be arranged more ergonomically.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As I think I may have posted before, for all the reasons you give, and when I can pluck up the courage and have the time, I'm planning to revise the dash such that the binnacle in front of the driver contains the speedo and rev counter with the oil and temperature gauges between them such that they all align to a line drawn across the top edge of the bezels. Then I will locate the fuel gauge and voltmeter each side of a circular clock in the centre console above the heater controls, and have all the switches below. I'll also revise the warning lght layout to fit around the instruments so they are visible too.

 

I did think of using a dual oil pressure/water temperature gauge, but that still leaves the problem of the warning lamps!

 

ATB Richard

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mine have all been changed by the previous owner. Speedo and rev counter to the left, anciliary gauges to the right, Stereo at the the top, heater controls behind gearstick.

 

Your not alone in thinking they could be better - the previous owner of my car was unimpressed enough to swap them all round.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

IMG_1871_zps5c979e9b.jpg

 

IMG_1815_zpsd3c096b4.jpg

 

I just made mine easier to reference at speed and the ones which were not as important are down in the centre console.  The main 4 are tacho, speedo, coolant temp and oil pressure.  The lights that sit at the bottom of the original binnacle were useless as they were out of sight, so I just ditched them. 

The centre console contains fuel, volts and oil temp.

Even at speed though revs and speed become irrelevant as you don't have time to look at them.

 

In your case Don, I would cut the rear frame and mount directly to a solid front piece.  Whatever material you decide to make the front out of, you can relocate instruments to wherever you feel them more appropriate.

You will always get people who hate what you do...it's part of life

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@Kieran: your dash board looks absolutely awesome! :smoke: a little corner in my head wants it too, the most of the rest (if there is any... ;) )wants it a bit suiting to the charme of the old car... So exactly, there is a parcel on already on the way from Merlin and Holden ;)

It breaks already my heart, but it seems to me, that I have to "alter" the back of the Rear frame, but there is no other choice if you really want to see a bit of the warning lights too. In opposite to that, I will give it a bit more of the superior appearance of the Riviera (hope so)

@Richard: sounds like the layout of the former Lotus employer with his Éclat S1,5

@Duncan: sounds also interesting :) do you have pictures of it?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do it already Don!  It's a frame - nobody sees it anyway.  At the end of the day, if it means you can see the all important water temperature gauge and it means peace of mind then this is a step forward.

Just make sure the cover plate on the front is suitably well tailored and only a geek will notice the difference.

With the Black smiths gauges in the link...they look well suited to the dash and overall feel  :thumbsup:

 

Think of this as progress not destruction.

 

If enthusiasts hadn't found ways to improve the function and reliability of the remaining flock of De-loreans from factory it's unlikely any of them would be running now as the original product was shi....

 

If it aint broke don't fix it is utter crap in my opinion!

If the candle worked good enough why invent the light bulb?

If stairs were good why invent the escalator?

If the Model T Ford was the best thing since sliced bread why invent the Eclat?  :getmecoat:

 

Lecture over, now looking forward to seeing the results  :clap:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have s2.2 elite ,I agree about cassette player,I like dash that I can see in daylight ,have stock steering wheel,however at night it is a nightmare caused by instrument back lights being next to useless,has anyone changed bulbs to led type and has it made it better

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have you thought of applying the anti reflection screen protector film that you can get for smart phones and tablets over the dials. It could be an easy fix for your problem and would save you having to chop up your dash.

:up:  :up:  :up: !

Has anyone tried this, and do you have before- and after- photos of how well it worked?

 

I've been half-thinking of pulling the glass from the instruments and covering the entire gauge area with an angled, curved sheet of clear plastic, like a TR-7 or early MX-5. This would sure be a LOT easier!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have s2.2 elite ,I agree about cassette player,I like dash that I can see in daylight ,have stock steering wheel,however at night it is a nightmare caused by instrument back lights being next to useless,has anyone changed bulbs to led type and has it made it better

I haven't but I did remove the panel light rheostat (you don't need it anyway!) and this improved the lighting slightly.

 

ATB Richard

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been half-thinking of pulling the glass from the instruments and covering the entire gauge area with an angled, curved sheet of clear plastic, like a TR-7 or early MX-5. This would sure be a LOT easier!

This could also look very cool. I think some Ferrari had this too?

To get progress in my little project I have first to undo the Speedo and the cable is not getting off. What is the trick with this?

post-5769-0-53327200-1435609092.jpg

Edited by Don.Hasi
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Got it finally. The lever needed some support to get the "nose" from the cable. A smooth pull was then enough. :-)

Today's work was to make some more "motorsport holes" :D

After some fiddling it looked like attached. Now the details will take some time...

post-5769-0-56018200-1436125051.jpg

post-5769-0-20028700-1436125079.jpg

Edited by Don.Hasi
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...