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Less W8
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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking for a damaged Elise that I can repair and have as an occasional road/track car. I found this one on ebay

Lotus Elise Roadster Elise Convertible Touring PW Leather | eBay

Can anyone give me any feedback? I feel the asking price is too high, but what is reasonable? I can fix most anything and the chassis damage doesn't scare me too much but I do wonder what parts (raw materials, Box section etc) is available from Lotus.

Is this on a player or is it a "run! don't walk"?

Thanks,

Ian
 

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I'm looking for a damaged Elise that I can repair and have as an occasional road/track car. I found this one on ebay

Lotus Elise Roadster Elise Convertible Touring PW Leather | eBay

Can anyone give me any feedback? I feel the asking price is too high, but what is reasonable? I can fix most anything and the chassis damage doesn't scare me too much but I do wonder what parts (raw materials, Box section etc) is available from Lotus.

Is this on a player or is it a "run! don't walk"?

Thanks,

Ian
Read this thread

http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f23...ed-non-authorized-chassis-repair-ideas-69001/

I believe the chassis was only available as a full assembly bonded and in the 13k+ range, and that was a few years ago! The official Lotus stance is not to repair this kind of damage, so as far as I know they won't supply you with extrusions or other parts to replace or cut out that damage.

That price is insane. A driving, no-longer-damaged, restored car with a salvage title is in the 20-26k range. That car needs a clamshell (3k+) even before the extremely expensive chassis and suspension damage.

I'd run away.

The general consensus (with a few people in violent disagreement who will will probably chime in) is that it's not a good idea to weld the chassis for a variety of reasons, so if you're not experienced in aluminum repair using aerospace adhesives, run away even faster.

Check SELOC and the other overseas Lotus forums. These cars are much more common in salvage yards there so more people have attempted these kind of repairs.
 

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re: Fixing a crashed Lotus

There are no box sections or frames from Lotus. The frame is aluminum and CANNOT BE WELDED! How good are you at riveting and bonding and repairing aluminum extrusions?

What about insurance?

Everything else is replaceable. Price is not cheap....

Good Luck!

Anton
 

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Less W8
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Discussion Starter #4
Aluminium cannot be welded? We'll have to agree to disagree on that one! My background is as an F1 and IndyCar design engineer now running and aerospace composites company. The repairs to the chassis do not worry me. Anything can be repaired! Anything.
My guess on its value is $10-12K not more. Am I being to optimistic?
Ian
 

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They are smoking large rocks if they think $19.5k is anywhere near what they should get.
I got mine ('06) with no chassis/suspension damage and a mildly damaged front clam (though, in far better shape than that one) for $20k.
 

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Aluminium cannot be welded? We'll have to agree to disagree on that one! My background is as an F1 and IndyCar design engineer now running and aerospace composites company. The repairs to the chassis do not worry me. Anything can be repaired! Anything.
My guess on its value is $10-12K not more. Am I being to optimistic?
Ian
That sounds about right if you want to restore it, and it sounds like you have the right expertise to repair and the ability to source the necessary parts.

The issue with that particular example IMO is that it's worth a lot more as a part-out than a restore job. The chassis damage is substantial enough to make repair expensive, but other valuable parts (lights, rear clam, and so on) are intact.
 

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re: Lotus chassis repair

OK, so you know a little more about this than an average person....

Hence, let me pose an answer in the form of a question...

The chassis is made from aluminum extrusions bonded with special epoxy. The extrusions are thin, hence light. There are no sections available from Lotus. If you weld on it, the heat will distort the surrounding area and vaporize the bonding epoxy, how to avoid that? Hence , the only solution is aircraft-style repair i.e. to rivet and bond. Unlike the aircraft, the chassis is not made to support that kind of repair, how to make sure that the repaired part is as strong as the original in supporting the suspension pick-up points?

All of us on this forum would very much like to know the answers to the questions, above.

I think, lesser questions are:

1. How to make a proper replacement section.
2. A unibody once crumpled cannot be made as strong as the original... very easily.

The business questions are:

1. What is a car with salvage title worth.
2. What can you expect for resale on this particular car. This community is small and everyone tracks all cars...
3. Why would you want to get involved with this? Is it really worth it, even at $5k?

It does have a VIN, so you can drive it on the street. There are legally imported track cars around for similar value. There are street cars around for better value. (I saif value not price!)

Creative Idea: If the price was right. I would get this (type of) car. Cut-off damaged piece and have the tub, only. Make my own front and back tube sub-frames with appropriate pick-up points. Since, it has a VIN, it would be street legal.... I bought a non-federal VIN car (really) a chassis and built it into a race car. It had lots of stuff missing... dash and gauges, front clam, soft top, motor, trans, but had a Honda conversion kit, included... it was advertised for $10k or so. I built it into a race car. The chassis and suspension were all there.

Anton

Aluminium cannot be welded? We'll have to agree to disagree on that one! My background is as an F1 and IndyCar design engineer now running and aerospace composites company. The repairs to the chassis do not worry me. Anything can be repaired! Anything.
My guess on its value is $10-12K not more. Am I being to optimistic?
Ian
 

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Less W8
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Discussion Starter #8
Hi Anton,
Good Questions indeed. Let me answer the second part first.

1. What is a car with salvage title worth. Completely finished I'd say $19-23K
2. What can you expect for resale on this particular car. This community is small and everyone tracks all cars... Not what I'd have in it most likely.
3. Why would you want to get involved with this? Is it really worth it, even at $5k? It may not be, I'm trying to decide. At the end of the day it was a quite nice reasonably low mileage car.

And now the tough bit.
You can weld close to epoxy, there are low temp techniques, heat sinks etc, but it would be good to know the fail temp of the epoxy before starting. Low heat should cause little to no distortion, and the repair would I think need to be a combination of techniques, rivet and bond in some areas, weld in other, replace where possible. Better yet if a chassis with damage in other areas could be bought parts could be removed and re-used.
This isn't a uni-body although it does have some of the same strengths and weaknesses.

I've seen racing chassis that you would have said were destroyed brought back and race just as well as they ever did, this one can live again, and in many ways is a good candidate to do so, but is it the best candidate, do the numbers add up right . . .

I suspect the sellers paid too much for it and will not let it go at what it's really worth.

If someone can point me to another 05-08 Elise that is for sale and a good value, I could focus my attentions to making it even more fun, which is part of my plan.

Ian
 

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Less W8
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Discussion Starter #10
I think a little less, but right around there. And that is just about what its worth most likely. As someone said - worth more as parts than together - sadly. The seller claims there is no chassis damage, only suspension. Either I'm hallucinating or he thinks I am . . .
Ian
 

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If I had the front subframe and the capability (in house or outsourced) to replace it, I could see offering them $11k. It'll take a few months for them to realize they have no buyers but they'd eventually come around.

But I think most elises take this kind of damage, so you aren't going to find a spare front subframe. If you can even cut one out of an existing car to begin with. Lotus doesn't sell the part AFAIK.

So what they have there is a parts car.
 

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Creative Idea: If the price was right. I would get this (type of) car. Cut-off damaged piece and have the tub, only. Make my own front and back tube sub-frames with appropriate pick-up points.
Been thinking that myself over the past few months as well. The added weight doesn't matter so much as does the ability to buy up these damaged frames cheap and/or sell the subframes.

And at that point you have options on the geometry, and less so but also the wheelbase. If I were being very adventurous, and why not since this is just a thought exercise, I'd make a v6 kit.
 

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Less W8
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Discussion Starter #13
So how about if I am able to buy this cal t some sensible figure I take a look at desning and manufacturing a new front Clip for it. It could be Part Tube, Shhet Metal or even composite. I'm a Mechanical design Engineer by profession so this shouldn't be too much of a stretch. Hell I'd even think about a replacement chassis if it came to it, kind of like Spyder do for the Elans.
If a front clip could be designed where it could be replaced, it might help keep quite a few cars on the road or track.
I somehow don't think I'd make my $1M doing this, but it could be a self sustaining product maybe.
 

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re: Building a race Lotus

Take a look at my Widebody Lotus thread. I extended the roll cage to the shock towers. That is 1.375x0.90 4130 tubing. The front weight of the car is 700lbs, that is 350lbs per side! If you push 2g's that is still 1000lbs per side, and not all at once... In reality the front structure can be cut-out and weight saved...

The same is true of the rear. The rear sub-frame with all pick-up points bolts to the car. Extending it 4", like the V6 car or 10", like a Viper, is not a big deal. The rear stock crush structure is made from bent galvanized sheet iron. I cut it all out. It is just junk. The problem is making molds and the body that does not look like a complete hack job. I spent a lot of time on making a wider rear clam, I should have made it longer... This is my only regret. I did not want to play with the geometry too much. Again, I should have...

The next step is to find a transaxle that will handle as much power as you want. Then get the engine that will bolt up. :) at the right price and weight.

I would think that a Subaru would be the best power/weight and CG. But everyone around me, including my engine builder and tuner are Subi haters. :)

Just dreaming out loud...

Good luck...

As to when it comes to making $$ or even recovering part of Your investment from the Elige community... I would not count on it. :)

Anton

So how about if I am able to buy this cal t some sensible figure I take a look at desning and manufacturing a new front Clip for it. It could be Part Tube, Shhet Metal or even composite. I'm a Mechanical design Engineer by profession so this shouldn't be too much of a stretch. Hell I'd even think about a replacement chassis if it came to it, kind of like Spyder do for the Elans.
If a front clip could be designed where it could be replaced, it might help keep quite a few cars on the road or track.
I somehow don't think I'd make my $1M doing this, but it could be a self sustaining product maybe.
 

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Take a look at my Widebody Lotus thread. I extended the roll cage to the shock towers. That is 1.375x0.90 4130 tubing. The front weight of the car is 700lbs, that is 350lbs per side! If you push 2g's that is still 1000lbs per side, and not all at once... In reality the front structure can be cut-out and weight saved...

The same is true of the rear. The rear sub-frame with all pick-up points bolts to the car. Extending it 4", like the V6 car or 10", like a Viper, is not a big deal. The rear stock crush structure is made from bent galvanized sheet iron. I cut it all out. It is just junk. The problem is making molds and the body that does not look like a complete hack job. I spent a lot of time on making a wider rear clam, I should have made it longer... This is my only regret. I did not want to play with the geometry too much. Again, I should have...

The next step is to find a transaxle that will handle as much power as you want. Then get the engine that will bolt up. :) at the right price and weight.

I would think that a Subaru would be the best power/weight and CG. But everyone around me, including my engine builder and tuner are Subi haters. :)

Just dreaming out loud...

Good luck...

As to when it comes to making $$ or even recovering part of Your investment from the Elige community... I would not count on it. :)

Anton
Ant I need a link to your wide body thread, the search button on here sucks...
 

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I'm looking for a damaged Elise that I can repair and have as an occasional road/track car. I found this one on ebay

Lotus Elise Roadster Elise Convertible Touring PW Leather | eBay

Can anyone give me any feedback? I feel the asking price is too high, but what is reasonable? I can fix most anything and the chassis damage doesn't scare me too much but I do wonder what parts (raw materials, Box section etc) is available from Lotus.

Is this on a player or is it a "run! don't walk"?

Thanks,

Ian
RUN.. They have been trying to sell that car for months. $10,000 be a more logical price. My guess is they purchased it to repair and re-sell and are screwed now with the front end like that.
 

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So how about if I am able to buy this cal t some sensible figure I take a look at desning and manufacturing a new front Clip for it. It could be Part Tube, Shhet Metal or even composite. I'm a Mechanical design Engineer by profession so this shouldn't be too much of a stretch. Hell I'd even think about a replacement chassis if it came to it, kind of like Spyder do for the Elans.
If a front clip could be designed where it could be replaced, it might help keep quite a few cars on the road or track.
I somehow don't think I'd make my $1M doing this, but it could be a self sustaining product maybe.
no way. you'd probably sell half a dozen. still it would be super cool!
 

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Less is Better
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no way. you'd probably sell half a dozen. still it would be super cool!
I agree with road racer. You'd be looking at a product that only someone rebuilding a track car or someone rebuilding a street car themselves could purchase. There's no way you could sell it to a shop for repair of a street car without prohibitively extensive and expensive regulatory testing. As fun as it would be, you're not looking at a money making proposition.
 
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