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Daveb99

Another Elise S1

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Some of you might know that I sold my Exige V6 Roadster a few weeks ago, the idea was to free up funds to spend on the house etc, and just drive the S160.

Well that plan didn’t exactly last long!

Without going into too much detail, needless to say that our S160 is one of those that you can't drive as much as you'd like due to the mileage being so low, so I found myself looking at cheap S1's to run alongside it - something I can drive all I like without caring about mileage.   So the mileage on the car wasn’t especially important (providing it’s cheap enough!), for me it’s about condition, history, and recent money spent that will save me plunging too much cash into it myself, as I’m well aware that there is a lot that can go wrong, though mostly it isn’t expensive to fix..

So I started a little hunt for an inexpensive S1 - Norfolk Mustard was the number one colour choice - always wanted one and never got around to it - and after looking at two ropey examples that will remain nameless (for now) - I found what I think is a real bargain and then did a great deal on it with the seller.  20 years of owning Elises and I still haven’t had an S2!

So here she is.  There are a few things needing attention (gear linkage bushes, handbrake, cambelt, gearbox whine, driving light brackets, other cheap bits), but given the mileage - almost 102,000 higher than our S160, it’s an incredibly clean car with solid history back to day 1, straight original chassis, original engine (new head gasket), and the previous owner spent probably well over £4K on it in the last 2000 miles, full suspension refurb, Nitrons, ally rad, wheel bearings, new discs & pads, battery, interior retrimmed, full carpet set, stainless exhaust, wheels powder coated, new Hurricane induction and plenty more besides.   The guy before that had it 12 years which is always a fairly good sign I think, and there was just one owner before him.

Anyway, the plan is to keep the costs down and not get carried away,  and I will most likely venture out on track with it for the first time in my life. Can’t believe I’ve had 5 of these things (all S1's) and never been on track yet :blink 

So far I’ve had all the wheels off and given it a good clean (not really needed, it was very clean in the arches anyway), a few cosmetic bits, removed the exhaust baffles, adjusted the Nitrons (slightly softer - but I’m going to get it geo'd soon).   In the depths of winter I’ll be removing the front clam to attend to few things, new headlight and driving light brackets, tow post, and a few other bits.   It’s booked in for a full and thorough check over by Gav at Unit 4 in Burton and he will probably do the cambelt for me too, and a few other niggles.  It needs a bit of paint, either whole front clam, or blending, but other than that the paint is stunningly good considering the mileage. 

Really pleased with it so far and bizarrely I’m not missing the V6 at all.   I was driving the damned thing far too fast on the roads for one, and for me at least, a sweet, well maintained and sorted S1 Elise is the perfect exponent of the well known phrase, “less is more”....

(until I get it on track and hanker for more power again that is) ;)

 

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Nice one Dave!

Have Gav put some 135 cams in when he does the cambelt 😁

What's up with the gearbox?  Are you sure it's not a noisy clutch release bearing?  A nice close ratio box would be a good thing though ...

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Another garage queen incoming 😂😂

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Cheers all ...

This one will be tidy but definitely not a garage queen - there's plenty of road rash when you look for it as you'd expect at 114,000 miles..  I'll get it well sorted for fast road and track - and time permitting you'll see more of me at the Peaks and Midland Tick runs, and I'm already thinking about Blyton for my first track day, probably in the spring...

Dean - more power will certainly tempt me at some stage.  Not sure what the issue is with the gearbox but it definitely whines a lot more than I've heard before.   Gav will work his magic I'm sure 😉

Edited by Daveb99

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Nice one Dave, I admire your reasoning but oh the dichotomy of it all, it doesn't look far off a garage queen already and presumably these photos are before the full 'Dave treatment'? Despite what you say I know you'll be wanting it looking as pristine as possible so I hope you're looking forward to many a happy hour touching in stone chips, polishing molten rubber from the bodywork and brake dust particles from the wheels 😊

Gearbox may just need a change to a good synthetic oil to quieten it down.

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OK - quick update - you've got a lot to answer for Mr Bower - just done some googling about 135 cams, found an old thread from Jody in 2014 when he fitted his, found a pair on eBay being sold by an MG specialist, checked the part number, had a long chat to Gav about it - and he could be fitting them next Tuesday !

Edited by Daveb99

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Indeed Phil.......😜

I think £145 for the 135 cams is pretty good.  Gav confirmed (of course) that they are a lot easier to fit if you're changing the cambelt anyway, just rocker cover etc off as well, and he called it the best "no brainer" upgrade you can do to a standard K.

Edited by Daveb99

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Very nice Dave 😎

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Update - been out for a good few drives now on roads I know well, and I've been tweaking the Nitrons and tyre pressures.   It's like a different car from when I picked it up, ride and handling wise.  The tyres are however budget Nankangs (not their performance tyres) with quite soft sidewalls 😮 so I've upped the pressures quite a bit and it obviously likes to move around a bit.   Fun but not ideal.    It's being geo'd next weekend as well, but the plan is to perhaps fit some AWIs with half decent road tyres, and use the black Rimstocks on track (but not with these Nankangs!).

I've also fitted some proper radius seat wheel nuts, as the previous owner had mistakenly fitted taper seat ones.   Scary stuff as they were already working loose when I took them off, and I had a long drive down the M6 in the dark, with lorries etc when I picked it up last week :o

Really impressed with this thing for what I paid.  I had forgotten how sweet a standard S1 can be, plenty of low down torque etc....and the Hurricane sounds a bit like carbs 😀

Edited by Daveb99

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Welcome to the mustard club Dave. Cracking looking Elise & I look forward to seeing it in the flesh at an event or two in the future.

Mark

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Cheers Mark (and everyone else), and here's a brief update on progress so far...

I've cleaned the front services 'compartment' as best I can (it was properly filthy, looked like it has stuff living in it!) and fitted a fly lead for a battery conditioner.

It has been at Gav's this week at Unit 4, he has given it a full check over and big thumbs up, and fresh cambelt, gear oil and handbrake cable.

I've sourced a set of AWIs which are being refurbed next weekend, and I have a fresh set of NS-2R tyres to go on.   Although the Rimstocks are the original wheels for the later S1s, I'm not a big fan and always preferred the original 5 spoke AWIs.    My plate, which I'll put on the car, is an 'R' plate anyway so I guess that works - all the benefits/improvements of a late S1 but with the early 'look' 😀

After that it's Geo, paint (just a bit on the driver's side front wing blended into the clam) and tidy up the interior where the previous owner retrimmed the seats and they are a bit dodgy here and there, so it needs a decent trimmer to sort it out.

Some time in the winter I'll remove the front clam and sort out the driving lights (I have new brackets for them), tow post, refurb the heater matrix, and other bits while I'm at it....

Oh, and I've been in touch with the 2nd owner (it had 3 before me) who had it 12 years, and put over 100,000 miles on it.   Very nice chap who is missing it like mad and wants me to feed him photos regularly!   It's great to find a straight, honest car at a bargain price and have the full history etc.   Doesn't seem to happen often nowadays, people throw things away, or just ruin cars sometimes!

Edited by Daveb99

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Dave

Very nice :)

It would be good to have a catch up some time!

Paul

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