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The Mustard Yellow Elise S1 Refresh Thread

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Cheers fellas......I have to say the virus situation has really knocked the stuffing out of me in terms of motivation to carry on - haven’t lifted a finger on it for 2 weeks almost.   It just doesn’t

Cheers Neil - was great to meet you and looking forward to more of the same 👍

Not much by way of updates from the last few weeks, as the car is pretty much finished, but I have done some serious miles in it - more on that below.   It's a really lovely thing to drive now, no squ

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I know who to come to when I win the lottery and want my S1 brought back to new......

Amazing thread.

Haha - thank you for that, comments like that make it all the more worthwhile 👍

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It has been a while so it’s about time I updated this…

The last few weeks have pretty much all been about refitting bits that I’ve been refurbishing, and getting it ready to go off for the front clam to be painted to rectify the shocking paint match on the driver’s side.  The hot weather really slowed me down as I seem to prefer beer and BBQs in the garden to slogging away in the garage.   Can’t think why 🍺

Tow Post and Driving lights:

New tow post fitted, and driving lights.  I bought the kit from Eliseparts, powder coated stainless brackets, nylon bolts, stainless springs etc.   Bizarrely the heads on the M8 nylon bolts for the adjustment of beam (3 each side) are a bit too big to fit into the recesses on the holes on the driving lights – so they had to be machined a bit (cue neighbour Alan to the rescue again – cheers Al).   I have fed this back to Eliseparts and they are checking their stock/supplier as they shouldn’t be like this.   It’s also quite annoying that they are white – as you would see some of them through the grille – so I’ve given them a quick blast of black paint.  EP really need to sort this out, but to be fair Ian was very good when I spoke to him last week.

I fitted some of Dan's clear protectors (www.divinehandcraft.co.uk) and put brighter bulbs in the driving lights as well.


Windscreen washer hose:

The plastic tubing for the washer hose was looking worse for wear so I sourced some from eBay to replace it.   If anyone wants to know the size, let me know, I have it somewhere.


Heater matrix & Fan blower:

I fitted a new foam seal to the heater matrix housing to get a good fit with the fan blower (thanks Phil) and reassembled it all, fitting a Tamiya style connector to the resistor/motor wiring which aids removal in future.   I used stainless bolts & lock nuts where possible to replace the ageing rivets – some of which I had to drill out when I stripped it all anyway.

Getting it back in the car was no fun at all - you’ll know what I mean if you’ve done it - and naturally involved obligatory profanities and fluid spill (coolant) despite being quick with connecting the hoses when I removed the plugs from them.  Good job the battery wasn’t fitted yet then…








New battery & earth strap clean:

I sourced a Varta Blue B18 battery as the existing one, despite being fitted only recently by the previous owner, didn’t have a high enough cold cranking amps (CCA) rating.  Don’t you love it when people cut corners….🤪

I also fitted a new drain hose, cleaned up the earth strap to chassis connector for a good connection while the battery was out, and fitted some new foam padding stuff to the battery clamp for a snug fit (I added a bit more after taking the photo and it doesn’t slide around at all now).


Bonnet catch mechanism:

I refitted this with a new micro switch for the alarm, as the rubber boot had long since vanished.  Amazing how well these bits turned out, they were pretty knackered when I removed them before stripping & refinishing etc.


Radiator finishing trim / cover:

Quick blast of primer & black paint on this, and refitted with stainless bolts.



Crash structure bracing brackets, clamshell A pillar brackets:

Again these were pretty corroded so having stripped and refinished them, I refitted them with stainless fixings (the rivets had to be drilled out for the crash box brackets when removing).


1st June – time for a blast in something different…

Why 1st June?  After months of working on the yellow one, albeit steady and slow, it was time to get the Scandal S160 back on the road after a very long winter lay up and lock down of course.    After a couple of great local blasts on the B-roads including meeting Rob E before he sold his red 160,  I took it up to the Peak District for a good run – 170 miles no less.  No matter how hard we tried we couldn’t seem to camouflage the first three cars against the hills on Winnats Pass though 😆

What has that got to do with the restoration of my yellow S1?   Absolutely nothing.


More Interior bits & audio:

I sourced some original Senotex finish door cards to replace the leather trimmed ones that came in the car.


I don’t see the point of having a stereo in the Elise if it sounds rubbish – so having already upgraded the speakers, adding spacers, wadding etc, I fitted a bargain small Pioneer sub in the footwell, hidden behind a bit of black carpet using loads of wide super strong velcro.   Bit of a ball ache to wire in, but a total transformation.   Well worth it if you like your tunes now and again. 


I also replaced some of the plastic scrivet fixing screws with proper screws where they aren’t seen, it makes them a heck of a lot easier to remove.


Wheel arch liners (F&R):

Couple of spire clips fitted to the front arch liners to replace the well nuts (not Lotus’s finest hour), and the same on the rear.  


 Managed to repair and reshape this mess with a heat gun on the rear one 👍 


ARB drop links:

Stripped threads…only one thing to do with those..


Protectors for headlights & indicators:

As these parts are getting more and more scarce (and pricey) I thought it made sense to invest in some clear protectors to reduce the chance of chipping/cracking them - they are from Dan at Divine Handcraft.   I also have a set to put on the clear indicators on the 160 – a must as those indicators are better than money in the bank nowadays…


Alternator swap:

As I mentioned earlier in this thread the RTX alternator seemed to whine, so I refitted the Magnetti Marelli one that I had refurbished in Leicester (before the latest lockdown that is!!) with a new regulator.   No photos, I was swearing too much from start to finish for that 🥴

Bolt checks & shakedown:

After checking all the bolts for correct torque or tightness I took the car up the road with no clam on to test the brakes etc.   All was good…..with a decent brake pedal – phew!


Front clam refit:

New stainless headlight brackets fitted, and refitted the lights etc to the front clam and superglued stainless shims onto the car, after a trial fit to get the shims right.

Finally then the clam went back on.   It only spent 5 months on the dining table, what’s the problem, darling…….???


Wiper arm:

The wiper blade was OK (fairly recent) but the arm itself was a bit shabby / corroded.   After a quick rub down, Kurust and black paint it’s like new again – good for another 100k miles…!


Off for paint:

With it all back together, I then had yet another setback with the paint guy in Oxfordshire I had lined up to do the front clam.   He took on yet more work despite promising me I was next – so I’ve sacked him off.

I’ve found somewhere else to do the front clam – MRH in Lichfield – as recommended by Paul at PJS Lotus and a few others on MLOC as well.   

As I write this the car is at the bodyshop, and I should get it back in a week or so.   To keep costs down, at Martin’s suggestion, I removed the clam and driver’s door on site (with my ever-patient wife’s help of course) and will refit it when we go to pick it up.   After all this work I wanted to be the one fitting the clam!

I didn’t realise they were going to paint a whole grit lorry in Mustard Yellow to match the paint for me 🙂


When I get it back it needs a Geo, and not much else – at the moment…. 


Edited by Daveb99
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43 minutes ago, DeanB said:


It will be great to see it when it's done.

Are you having PPF fitted?

Cheers Dean, yeah I can’t wait to get it back, get the geo sorted (Jody is the man for this!) and then enjoy it.

I’m not bothering with PPF, I think I’ll just get it painted again in future eventually, if and when needed, it seems like a lot to spend on a high mileage car on top of the paint cost.....(unless anyone knows of a nice cheap way).

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Yep - although the bodyshop has a proper oven so it will be baked dry and fully hardened according to them.   I’ll still be hanging back like a skulking teenager everywhere I go though 🤣

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1 hour ago, Daveb99 said:

Yep - although the bodyshop has a proper oven so it will be baked dry and fully hardened according to them.   I’ll still be hanging back like a skulking teenager everywhere I go though 🤣

I remember the first stone chip after I had my S1 re-sprayed, Dave. It hurt!

Car looks great. 

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Thanks for the comments chaps - getting there, the body shop have called and the paint is done, so I’m picking it up on Saturday 👍

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Top work Dave, I reckon you need to update your profile now though:- Car Type:Elise S160 + Std S1 by no means does it justice. How about OCD S1? B)

Thanks Phil - haha yeah - obsessive compulsive Dave 🤔

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Quick update - the car is back from having the clam painted, and I’m pleased to say it’s back together and drives like an absolute peach.  Huge thanks again to Jody for doing the geo at the weekend.

For the first time since I started this I’ve written a full list of everything done to the car since I bought it - and it’s a heck of lot longer than I thought it would be!  I have a few things left to do (like align the headlights) but not much at all. 

This is my 5th S1, I had my first when I was only 28, but it’s the first one I’ve done any serious work on.   I find it amazing that you can buy a high miler and turn it into something really special, that drives and looks better than new in many respects, for very little outlay - if you have the time and patience (and basic spannering skills...).   I’ve learned loads not just about Elises but mechanical stuff in general, if you’re wondering whether to have a go at things yourself I’d say roll up your sleeves and do it - most of the stuff really isn’t that difficult and it’s very satisfying. 

Absolutely love this thing.

More pics to follow....

Done by Gav @ Unit 4 (last year):
New Cambelt
Gearbox oil renewed
New Handbrake cable 
Gear linkage fixed & greased

Now onto the stuff I’ve done myself, in no particular order....

Serviceable/wear & tear items:
New Varta Blue Battery
Front brake calipers stripped, serviced & refinished
Rear brake calipers stripped & refinished
Made & fitted new cupro nickel front brake lines (2)
Rear Toe links upgraded (Uniball kit with stainless rods)
Brake fluid renewed
Clutch fluid renewed
Steering rack refurbished (phosphor bronze cups)
ARB drop links replaced
Fitted refurbished alternator (new regulator)

General stuff:
Soft top replaced
New clear stone guards on rear arches
Number plate mount repaired & reinforced
OEM amber side repeaters
New OEM Cibie headlights
Front indicator captive bolt replaced
Stainless headlight mounting brackets bonded to clam
Stainless headlight adjustment brackets
Heater & fan assembly stripped & refinished
Inside front crash structure refinished
New stainless tow post (finished in black) fitted
Headlight wiring harness repaired & new ceramic connectors fitted
Front wishbone mounts - steel bobbins refinished, Duralac barrier applied
New windscreen
Undertrays scrubbed & Duralac applied
Rear fog & reversing lights refreshed
Exhaust tail pipes re-centred
New door waist seals (Elise Shop)
Door hinges restored - capped with sheet stainless
Pedal box secured with bolt to replace corroded rivet
New powder coated stainless driving light brackets fitted
Windscreen washer tubing & battery drain hose replaced
Clear protectors fitted to headlights, indicators and driving lights
Newly refurbished AWIs & AD08R’s fitted
Front clam & bonnet resprayed

Probax Seats fitted
Seat frames refurbished & painted
New (Eliseparts) leather sill pads
Momo Team (300mm) steering wheel fitted with custom boss and spacer
Sound deadening removed from footwells & chassis fixing holes
Footwells treated & refinished
Full chassis clean
Carpets trimmed & refitted
OEM Elise Mats fitted
Cigar lighter fixed
Gear surround stripped & refinished
Centre console replaced
Door cards replaced with originals
OEM Indicator stalks fitted 
Alarm siren battery removed
Eliseparts throttle linkage kit fitted
Passenger footrest refinished & clear wrapped
Storage net & fixings sourced and fitted
Audio - Pioneer sub (footwell) & head unit, Infinity Kappa speakers fitted, DAB aerial

List of parts stripped and/or refinished:
Brake calipers
Seat mounting frames
Driving lights (backs)
Front clam A pillar brackets
Bonnet hinge & mount
Bonnet catch assembly
Side repeater mounting plates
Door hinge spring plates
Soft top cant rail brackets
Wiper motor bracket
Master brake cylinder
Anti roll bar
Headlight adjuster brackets (to keep as spares)
Upper damper mounting brackets
Lower crash structure to chassis brackets
Front & rear grilles
Radiator cover trim
Wiper arm
Gear surround & centre console
Passenger footrest

Edited by Daveb99
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