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post #161 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-02-2011, 07:30 PM
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Everything is looking great! Congratulations!
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post #162 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-02-2011, 08:57 PM
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very nice.


Just in case anyone needs to know, a couple ways to make gaskets, using sheets of gasket paper.

Put the part on the paper, trace the exterior, use magic marker on part's inner edges to mark the paper.


Or, put paper on part, gently tap with ball-peen hammer (small enough and round) on every edge. This cuts out the gasket to the correct shape.

If you think you'll need > 1, trace a few.

05 elise (BOE Rev300 supercharged, SSRs, shift tower mods, Multivex; HID hi/low beams); 05 Corolla XRS. Past '72 Elan Sprint (I restored), Lotus 7 w/X-flow, TT Supra, Bugeye Sprite, BMW 2002 & 2002tii, '65 GTO.

Driving Tips-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...art-1-a-49665/
Moss Emergency Line-https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...cy-line-36631/
Bleeding Brakes- https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f10...-brakes-241138
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post #163 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-02-2011, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by EuropaFan View Post
The other problem I'm having is I've removed the stock oil pressure gauge and after looking at the back, it's clearly not going to match the brightness of the other instruments because the bulb is set back into the tube and doesn't even stick out into the housing. There's a large coil element right in front of the light bulb tube so you can't put the bulb in any farther. Even if I get a brighter bulb it's not going to illuminate the gauge the same way the others are illuminated. I can't believe they designed it this way.

Not exactly sure what to do about this. In fact right now I can't even get the oil pressure gauge apart; the front bezel is frozen and simply won't budge. I've tried everything I can think of without risking damaging it.
I've had that problem as well, I couldn't work out if it was the bezel getting stuck by rust or the rubber ring between the glass & the bezel breaking down into a hard glue-like substance & locking it all together.

Two ways I've tried this with similar Lucas-style gauges. The first is to place the gauge bezel down and soak Plus-Gas penetrant release fluid (similar but IMO better than WD40) around the bezel & leave overnight. Dry off & use a sheet of rubber around the bezel to give better grip when trying to twist it off.

The second is really the last resort only for when the gauge is really too dirty to be usable, and that is to bend back the tabs on the chrome bezel with a jeweler's screwdriver and release it that way.

With either method it is "got to go through with it" attempts because giving up after soaking in release fluid might well end up with some fluid inside the gauge and making it look worse.

Brian

(ps - yep, that's beginning to look a really nice engine bay.)
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post #164 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-03-2011, 12:50 AM Thread Starter
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I've had that problem as well, I couldn't work out if it was the bezel getting stuck by rust or the rubber ring between the glass & the bezel breaking down into a hard glue-like substance & locking it all together.

Two ways I've tried this with similar Lucas-style gauges. The first is to place the gauge bezel down and soak Plus-Gas penetrant release fluid (similar but IMO better than WD40) around the bezel & leave overnight. Dry off & use a sheet of rubber around the bezel to give better grip when trying to twist it off.

The second is really the last resort only for when the gauge is really too dirty to be usable, and that is to bend back the tabs on the chrome bezel with a jeweler's screwdriver and release it that way.

With either method it is "got to go through with it" attempts because giving up after soaking in release fluid might well end up with some fluid inside the gauge and making it look worse.

Brian

(ps - yep, that's beginning to look a really nice engine bay.)
Ah THAT'S what it is. I noticed a brittle, almost tar-like substance between the glass and chrome which had it glued tight. I did finally get the oil pressure gauge apart and I did almost exactly what you suggested. I shot WD40 around the inside of the rim, then used a large piece of rubber over the chrome ring along with rubberized work gloves to get a grip and it finally came loose. I really had to exert a lot of force to get it loose but I was greatly relieved to feel that chrome ring start to move.

I decided to try painting the inside of the housings with gloss white enamel and that has helped. I've done the oil pressure and temperature gauge, and I have the inside of the fuel gauge sitting in the garage drying.

The inside of the gauges are painted this strange blue which doesn't help with the brightness at all.
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I'm also going to check the voltage on the bulbs because they honestly don't look like they're getting 12 volts. I had one out and turned the switch on and it should be brighter than it is.

Here's a shot that shows the haze and crud on the inside of the glass. Believe it or not the outside is clean which was frustrating because it doesn't look like it. Which is why I decided to take them apart and clean them.
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Here's that same gauge after cleaning and all; the result is well worth it.
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While I'm in there behind the dash (I removed the radio which makes it MUCH easier to get back there) I've also taken the Defrost (fan) rocker switch out, taken it apart, cleaned it and I think I'm going to paint the plastic rocker gloss black. I just hate that bleached out greyish look it and the light switch have.

I'll have more pics soon of all this stuff including updated shots of the newly cleaned minor instruments in the dash all lit up.
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post #165 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-03-2011, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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Put the fuel gauge together this morning and took a quick pic of how they look now lit up. The Ammeter on the left is the only one I haven't painted the inside white; the other 3 to the right of it are painted. Some of them really responded, i.e. the temperature gauge. Part of the problem is the gauges aren't the same in where the bulb is located. The fuel gauge on the far right has the bulb at the bottom, the temp gauge next to it has it at the top, the oil pressure gauge to the left of the temp gauge has it on the left side for example.

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If I could get them all to look like the temp gauge that would be great but it's not going to happen. The oil pressure gauge the bulb doesn't even go into the housing; it sits inside the tube. I can tone down the temp gauge by sliding the bulb back into the tube which I may do just so that gauge doesn't stand out so much.
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post #166 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-03-2011, 08:05 PM
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About painting roccker switches - Krylon make a satin black for plastic that looks very original. Try it.

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post #167 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-03-2011, 09:50 PM Thread Starter
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About painting roccker switches - Krylon make a satin black for plastic that looks very original. Try it.
Thanks for the tip!

I already painted the one rocker; I painted it flat black then used a clearcoat which gave it a look that's pretty close to original. It also gives it a bit of a textured finish. It certainly looks better than the faded crud it was before!

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AFTER:
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Just have to do the other switches now to make them all match.
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post #168 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-04-2011, 10:31 PM Thread Starter
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Took care of the missing nut on that one header stud. The walking trick worked, but it was slow going. Because of the lack of room and clearance I could only tighten it with a wrench one flat at a time. Glad that's done!

I finished the minor instruments on the dash. Got the light levels as balanced as I could. Cleaning them made a difference in the brightness and clarity, and the gloss white enamel inside helped too. I think I'm going to put the incandescent bulbs back in the tach and speedo; I just don't like the blue color of the LED's.

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Compare the above to the way they looked when I started; the fuel gauge on the right made the biggest improvement.
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That's pretty much it. Next week I'll talk to a couple of places and see about getting it in for paint and getting the interior redone. I'll have them replace the windshield and all the rubber and seals around the windshield and doors. I'll also get the suspension aligned and have the engine properly tuned up. Don't know how long all that's going to take but I'm hoping I'll get the car back sometime in October. Can't wait to see her all shiny and new-looking.

After that I'll look at custom wheels, upgrading the brakes, and doing something about better heat insulation under the rear trunk tray and engine cover. With the muffler sitting right under it that trunk tray gets hot!
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post #169 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-05-2011, 08:18 AM
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That's probably as good as it gets with the gauges. You've done a great job! What color are you going to paint it? What are you going to do with the interior? I chose cloth because it breaths better and since there is no A/C, that's important. Also, I think it holds you in the seat a little better.

Congratulations and keep up the great work!
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post #170 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-05-2011, 06:33 PM Thread Starter
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That's probably as good as it gets with the gauges. You've done a great job! What color are you going to paint it? What are you going to do with the interior? I chose cloth because it breaths better and since there is no A/C, that's important. Also, I think it holds you in the seat a little better.

Congratulations and keep up the great work!
I'm going to get it painted in the black and gold JPS colors. For the interior I'm going with leather but with cloth on the seat centers. The stock oatmeal color or something close to that for carpeting.

I really like the colors in the fur collar of this jacket. I'm hoping I can get a leather that is close to the lighter tan/caramel color, and the darker amber/honey color for the fabric.

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post #171 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-05-2011, 09:30 PM
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Europafan, I do hope we're going to get continued reports of this build, even though it leaves your care for a bodyshop you still have a duty to your readers !

The JPS colours are a good choice, a small car like the Europa will polish up very nicely.
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post #172 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-07-2011, 07:29 AM Thread Starter
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Europafan, I do hope we're going to get continued reports of this build, even though it leaves your care for a bodyshop you still have a duty to your readers !

The JPS colours are a good choice, a small car like the Europa will polish up very nicely.
Lol well I didn't realize I had such a loyal readership!

I'll keep posting as I get down to detail and finishing work. I want this to be a beautiful car, a drivable car, and a comfortable and fun car to be in.
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post #173 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-07-2011, 12:47 PM
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All of your hard work is paying off. The engine compartment is looking great. Painting the cam cover made a world of difference. So much so that I'm thinking of stripping the factory black crinkle finish from mine and painting it matt black similar to yours. My thermostat housing looks almost as bad as yours did; think I'm going to try grinding and polishing to improve its looks. My alternator just bit the dust, so I get to rebuild it. Going to give that a bit of a polish, too, since it's apart.

I haven't posted much in this thread, but I've been watching each update with interest (ditto TheKid#9 and his project). The experiments with gauge panel lighting is particularly interesting. My computer is in the garage near my Europa. Reading the Europa activity on here during my breaks is inspiring, and sometimes feels like I'm working alongside fellow lotus projects. Keep up the good work. Cheers.

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post #174 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-07-2011, 01:53 PM
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I took ownership of a europa just days before you started this thread. I have enjoyed reading and watching the progress you've made. great work on the car!

I am very limited in budget, space and time, however i will have much to be proud of if my car turns out half as nice as yours.

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post #175 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-07-2011, 04:08 PM
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This might be a record for a Europa thread here, nine pages & counting.

Keep it up!
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post #176 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-07-2011, 07:11 PM
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I'm going to get it painted in the black and gold JPS colors. For the interior I'm going with leather but with cloth on the seat centers. The stock oatmeal color or something close to that for carpeting.

I really like the colors in the fur collar of this jacket. I'm hoping I can get a leather that is close to the lighter tan/caramel color, and the darker amber/honey color for the fabric.

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JPS colors are beautiful. The oatmeal color interior was my choice, too, and the leather will add a bit of class, too. It should be beautiful (if hard to keep clean! and warm in the summer )
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post #177 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-08-2011, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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After doing some inquiries I have to say I'm shocked at the prices now. It looks like it's going to cost anywhere from $7-10k to get the interior redone and the car painted. Apparently paint costs have skyrocketed here in California due to environmental and state regulations.

I think I'm going to start checking in Arizona and Nevada to see what it would cost there. Might be worth it to drive to those states if their prices are signficantly lower than here in California.
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post #178 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-08-2011, 12:23 PM
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If it's any consolation (and I bet it isn't) things are the same on the other side of the pond in the UK. I don't know about our re-trim prices, but apparently a high quality professional re-spray over here costs anywhere between 5k to 8k (GBP) which works out somewhere in the region of $8k to $12k in dollars.

Even though I know I'll never get the same quality as the pro's I like to do my own restorations and I've just spent somewhere in the region of $600-$700 on materials (paint, etc) to do my Europa. Add in my time at over a month working most days and it's easy to see how we end up with these job quotes.

I don't blame you for shopping around but do make sure that your bodyshop is used to dealing with fibreglass cars. It's a lot different from respraying metal bodies and for a long lasting job the repairs and preparation are much slower.

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post #179 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-08-2011, 06:22 PM
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It was over $6k (closer to $7k IIRC) for my paint and stripe job. I felt I had pretty much gotten every panel flat. I even covered the doors, the boot and bonnet with gauze and they were very smooth. I figured they had very little body work, then prime, finish sand, and paint, but I think they then covered it with some filler of their own first. The only reason I think that is there was some extra stuck on the side of one of the drain holes behind the tranny. Anyway, I had them use Glasurit polyurethane.

I don't remember how much the interior came to but it was surely over $1k. All this was done in 1998 so I'm sure it would be more now. $7-10k doesn't seem out of the question - especially if you're going to use leather.

I know the environmental regs are pretty stringent in CA so you might be worthwhile getting an opinion out of the state. You have to decide if the drive is worth it...

Good luck!
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post #180 of 212 (permalink) Old 09-10-2011, 07:36 AM Thread Starter
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All of your hard work is paying off. The engine compartment is looking great. Painting the cam cover made a world of difference. So much so that I'm thinking of stripping the factory black crinkle finish from mine and painting it matt black similar to yours. My thermostat housing looks almost as bad as yours did; think I'm going to try grinding and polishing to improve its looks. My alternator just bit the dust, so I get to rebuild it. Going to give that a bit of a polish, too, since it's apart.

I haven't posted much in this thread, but I've been watching each update with interest (ditto TheKid#9 and his project). The experiments with gauge panel lighting is particularly interesting. My computer is in the garage near my Europa. Reading the Europa activity on here during my breaks is inspiring, and sometimes feels like I'm working alongside fellow lotus projects. Keep up the good work. Cheers.
Yeah I guess this is a pretty exclusive club to be in; people restoring a Europa. Glad to have the fellowship!

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Originally Posted by exarkun1178 View Post
I took ownership of a europa just days before you started this thread. I have enjoyed reading and watching the progress you've made. great work on the car!

I am very limited in budget, space and time, however i will have much to be proud of if my car turns out half as nice as yours.
Thank you, very nice of you to say so! Just take your project in small steps; over time, you'll see it all start to come together.

Speaking of small steps....

I took apart the front running lights, cleaned them, cleaned the connections, put 303 on the rubber seals (which were in pretty good shape; the 303 made them look like new). Put the incandescent bulbs back in the tach and speedo, and pulled the car out for a drive.

Here's a shot of the dash with the engine running and the incandescents back in the tach and speedo.
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I also removed the front hood, cleaned the hinge bolts and replaced the rubber discs that were between the hood and the body. Put a small amount of grease on the rubber grommet that the hood brace fits into and....voila! The squeaks in the front are gone! When doing a test drive the car was the quietest it's been and ran pretty well.

The suspension still needs to be properly aligned and the engine/carbs need tuning but the car is steadily getting better and better.

I'm going to try some local shops here in town to see what kind of price I can get for getting the interior redone. The body and paint however, it looks like I'm going to just have to bite the bullet and spend at least $6k to get a quality paint job. That's double what I had originally anticipated (shows how long it's been since I've done anything like this) but that's apparently the way it is now.
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