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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I took my dash apart last week to add some felt between plastic parts to stop some squeaks.

I found a few main sources for the noise.

First, after getting the dash top off, I found 3 of the screws meant to hold the defroster plenum to the dash top were missing. This allowed the plenum to touch the plastic shroud attached to the windshield and rub, rub, rub. There was enough rubbing to leave a little white powder. I replaced the screws and added felt strips to the plenum surfaces that run near the windshield shroud.

The second thing I found was that the front plastic parts like the instrument shroud and the airbag cover contact the dashboard cover at the leading edge of the cover. There are plastic ribs that directly contact the dash top and if you move them around a little, you can hear the squeaking. Adding felt to these ribs totally quiets the noise.

There are small raised bumps in the plastic parts where they overlap and touch each other. I added felt to all these bumps.

I also found that the side vent panels rub against the body of the car that they cover. Felt again. There are a couple other spots where the felt comes in handy in the area of the side vent covers and under the access panels on both sides.

The result? A silent dash and a happy driver. Sorry I didn't take any pics of the felt, only a shot with the dash totally off. You can see the rub marks from the dash plenum. It's the white line next to the left hole in the shroud at the base of the windshield.
 

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Less is Better
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It seems that the car was about 95% designed when they decided to release to production:).
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I found the source of a recent rattling to be the VIN plate against the windshield. A little pulling on the plate and the rattle is gone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It's been noted before, but I thought I'd just repeat that the sun visors can make a pretty annoying rattling/squeaking noise against the windshield. Pull it back a little off the windshield (or remove it completely) and that noise will be gone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Over the past couple of months I noticed a new squeaking noise. This time it was coming from the upper rear firewall near the passenger seat. It would only seem to happen when it was cold and no matter what panel I pressed on, the noise wouldn't go away. I figured it was either the exterior roll bar cover rubbing on the rear clam or something from behind the interior plastic bulkhead cover.

What I found was that the foam noise insulation in the touring pack cars has a lot of potential places to rub and squeak. This foam piece is a dense foam rubber molded part that runs all the way across the rear bulkhead of the car (circled in red). It has smooth surfaces that will make a very annoying sound when rubbing against other parts. Most notably, the foam touches the roll bar, the seat belt reels, and the box that houses the motion sensor (that's the square cut-out in the middle of the foam).

So I bought a large roll of 1/16" felt and almost totally covered the foam with it. I also covered the tabs where the rear bulkhead cover contact the rear clam along the sides of the car (green) and at the rear where the bulkhead cover rides along a plastic beam just below the rear window (blue). Lotus already had a short piece of foam on this beam, so it must have been a recognized source of noise at the factory, but I added felt along the entire length of the beam to make sure there was no chance for plastic/plastic contact. I also added a little ring of felt around the holes for the plastic rivets that hold the rear bulkhead to the beam to eliminate contact there (yellow).

This seems to have quieted the squeaking that I was hearing, one more little modification to avoid the squeak-induced brain damage that the car can cause.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I'd found that sometimes I'd get a squeak from the steering wheel. Turns out the airbag ring rubs on the aluminum hub of the wheel itself.

Release the airbag module with 2 screws in the side of the wheel, put felt on the surface between the module and the wheel hub where the screws are located and between the back surface of the airbag ring (the silver thing) and the aluminum hub. Bolt back together, no more squeaking.

I also added felt strips to the roll bar cover (#5 in the diagram labeled 15.11) between it and the bar and it and the body to stop a squeak that was coming from the passenger side near the top seat belt anchor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I found a new spot, the door cards will rub against the bottom of the door and cause alot of squeaking. Add a strip of thin felt to the leather on the back side of the door card to eliminate that noise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Another note on rattles and squeaks. Note that the door strike pins are highly adjustable. If they are located too far towards the outside of the car, the doors will not pull tight enough against the body. What you end up with is a terribly annoying rattle every time you go over a bump. The remedy is to loosing the pin, slide it slightly towards the inside of the car and tighten it down again. This will pull the door closer to the car body and lets the seals hold the door more firmly in place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #21 · (Edited)
I pulled the car out for it's first drive of the season the other day. Started it up and noticed a new instrument in the usual chorus of noises that the car makes. A noticeable vibration noise from the back at idle that went away with a stab of the throttle. I went for my drive to get my first driving impressions of my new ShiftR111 and found that the noise would come and go with different engine speeds. When I got home, I tapped on the diffuser and around the rear license plate panel and could tell there was some resonance after the tap. It turned out to be the screws holding the heat shield to the back side of the license plate panel. Something to look for if you're experiencing the same kind of noise.
 
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