Some of you may recall that a little over a year ago I decided to change the colour of my Evora’s engine cover from silver to a more sporty red:-
Now, having recently been taken by the sight of an early black Evora with red mirrors and a red stripe around the diffuser I decided mine needed yet MORE red too! This is nothing new by any means, having already been done initially on the Evora S GP edition, but I thought it needed to be done on a sports racer too.
I didn’t want to respray my existing black mirrors so thought I would have another go at vinyl wrapping. I have previously had mixed results when trying to apply vinyl wrap; my first ever attempt using a satin black vinyl went pretty well when I gave my old Type 49 the panda eye treatment:-
Since then my results using gloss vinyl wraps have been pretty poor but undeterred I thought I would give it another go and it started off reasonably well…
....but then went rapidly down hill:-
Even if I had managed to apply it successfully I was never going to be happy with the low grade finish of the film – maybe I needed a better quality film in the first place but either way that idea and the film was rapidly consigned to the bin.
So the only option left to me then was then spraying and I needed to find myself a spare set of mirror covers. I looked on DeRoure and a single primed cover from Lotus was going to be over £70 presumably plus VAT as well!!!!
So that wasn’t happening either!
Fortunately, from previous surfing of various Lotus forums I knew that, as is often the case, the mirror covers are shared with those of another vehicle, namely the Jaguar XK amongst others and I was able to collect a pair from a specialist Jaguar salvage company called Auto Reserve Jaguar As a bonus they were virtually on my doorstep and the chap there was most helpful. Like many though he had never heard of an Evora so was most interested to hear all about it. These were a far more reasonable £18 for a pair including the VAT!
That price may be changing in the future though, now he knows there is another prestigious outlet for him
A quick comparison to one of my black mirrors soon showed them to indeed be identical:-
I gave each a clean and rub down with some wet and dry to key the paint and remove any stone chips:-
Fortunately I still had the primer, some calypso red and just about enough acrylic lacquer left over from my engine cover so I started with a few light coats of the primer...
...followed by the red and then the lacquer. Whilst the finish was reasonably glossy it still had the orange peel effect:-
Truth be told I ran out of the lacquer, I had applied 3 thin coats but I would have liked to have gone over them one more time ideally. They were already looking better than my vinyl wrapping effort anyhow!
I let the paint harden off for 24 hours, with some help from the gas fire along the way, and then thought I’d try to remove the orange peel effect with some fine wet and dry (1000 grade or more). I have not tried this before so I sanded it carefully in stages, checking progress along the way...
...until I had removed all but the worst of it:-
I then mounted my trusty DAS-6 PRO in the vice and started polishing the cover, starting with a medium pad and polish...
...before finishing off with a soft pad and fine polish.
As you can see there was a considerable improvement:-
Suitably pleased with the first cover I then moved on to the second:-
This one didn’t go quite as well since I polished through the lacquer very slightly on one edge, fortunately it won’t be overly visible on the car so I have decided to live with it for now. Once they get stone chipped I’ll aim to do a better job next time
So what do they look like on the car? I reckon they’re just the job and go nicely with the red calipers, others may disagree of course but then I can always swap back to black again at the drop of a hat should I ever wish:-
The second part of this mini make-over is the addition of a red stripe around the rear diffuser. I had some red vinyl left over from one of my r/c plane projects so have used that. At 15mm wide I couldn’t bend it through the 90 degrees on each side so I opted to make it in 3 pieces; a straight centre section and then the two end pieces were cut to shape. It’s a little more subtle than the mirrors but I feel it gives the back end a bit of a lift too:-
So that's it. You may have noticed I've been doing a bit of polishing in recent weeks too, the bodywork's done but I still have the wheels to do yet