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Vx220 Turbo Full Restoration - Is This Viable?


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#1 IJP

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:12 PM

Hi all,

 

haven't been on here for years as our VX220 Turbo has been off the road for some time and mistreated by a rather crappy garage some time ago. It's currently with a garage local to us who specialise in restorations but the initial assessment of the work required was seemingly optimistic and it now appears that the glass fibre body is pretty much crumbling to pieces near every fixture point to the chassis. Everything from engine components to chassis arms, steering rack and beyond is rusted to quite a depth. Pretty much we've been told it's going well into 5 figures to get it back on the road again.

 

We're slightly irked that said garage took a stage payment and have used that to buy parts based on the initial assessment. Now they've dismantle further the additional jobs are appearing by the bucket load. I know that body panels are not exactly in abundant supply either. So we have 1 x rotten all over VX220 yellow, a bucket load of brake, suspension and other parts plus a set of re-furbed Black Alloy Wheels. The engine was modded by Regal Motorsport to stage 5, with upgraded turbo, intercooler etc before everything went awry.

 

Any opinions/views/advice welcome.

 

We're in East Sussex/South Coast



#2 siztenboots

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:21 PM

due to the age of the cars , many parts will have come to the end of their normal lifespan and will be due for replacement.

 

in terms of parts , the club is always willing to help out finding bits or lend a helping hand

 

email me with any pictures you have or more details



#3 IJP

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:27 PM

due to the age of the cars , many parts will have come to the end of their normal lifespan and will be due for replacement.

 

in terms of parts , the club is always willing to help out finding bits or lend a helping hand

 

email me with any pictures you have or more details

Thanks Siztenboots, We will be off to see the garage over the next few days and then I'll grab some more pics. Cosmetic stuff like the interior is pretty easy to source but its the level of crumbling fibreglass that's causing drama... and the hours needed to get it sorted and replace/clean/refurb the corroded steel components. Be great to get it on the road again...



#4 Rosssco

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:46 PM

Post up some pics / details and I'm sure you will be offered some decent advice on here.



#5 Johnboyhgt

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:56 PM

Might be a better idea to sell as a restoration project and get your money back plus some for the bank.

 

If your idea is to make the car roadworthy again and preserve it then its going to cost lots of money to get someone to do that for you, if your looking at cost vs value i expect you to be a way off.

 



#6 R30SS

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:58 PM

You can now buy brand new clams - http://www.lotushardtops.com/ which might help rather than trying to repair and salvage what's left.



#7 ChrisS1

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 01:59 PM

Body panels are available from Lotushardtops (aka jonnyboy on here)

#8 mbes2

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 02:16 PM

DIY

 

It will just need a good clean...

 

29541600_10156409267724434_4104875641829

 

29542533_10156416360814434_1753749952953

 

29511712_10156416360399434_3127767139724

 

30571645_10156463310089434_2337147887878

 

38494065_10156765120369434_2569799093496

38496378_10156765127494434_6865952040988

44821319_10156968251069434_4078797266960

 

Plus its lots more fun than watching a garage touch it



#9 Ormes

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 03:24 PM

Completely agree with Mark...

 

In answer to your question... Do I think it is viable to get a garage to do all of the work with their markup on parts and labour charges, and probable lack of familiarity with the Elise platform - In general, NO.

 

Fact is, it depends on a few things.

-What outcome are you looking for?

-Do you enjoy and are you capable when it comes to messing with cars?

-Is it a labour of love that you want to drive again for years to come, or is it thorn in your side that you want to fix up to cut your losses.

 

I assume that the base car is £7-9k depending on condition?

 

Whether you plough an extra £15+k into it through a garage or plough an extra £10+k into it through DIY you sill "only" have a £15k+ car depending on finish and quality of work.

 

If it was me, the decision tree would start with the "labour of love or cut your losses" question.  If the latter, just sell as is, no messing.

 

If you can't or won't get your hands dirty, seriously consider just selling, unless you feel as though you can get over the amount that you spent and enjoy the thing.

 

If you are happy to get your hands dirty, make a list of things to do, prioritise it, draw a line as to your minimum viable standard (and obviously factor MOT regs) and then chip away at the other less important/cosmetic jobs once it's back on the road.

 

thumbsup

 

 

 

 

 

 



#10 vocky

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 04:50 PM

to make a vx220 'as new' would be a five figure sum

 

however to get your car back on the road would be considerably less, the suspension always rusts and looks far worse than it really is, same with the bodywork - a decent bodyshop should be able to repaint the entire car for under £4k

 

DIY is far cheaper and probably your best option



#11 jonnyboy

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 05:02 PM

We are starting to see a lot of this sort of thing now we have two going through at the moment.

 

Full resprays are starting to become needed as the cars clock up to 18 years old. Add on a suspension refresh involving new dampers and all of a sudden you are putting 10k in pretty easily. 

 

However what's the alternative? Lotus's cheapest new product is 42k and nothing else quite hits the spot for most of us. You could argue trade it in for a slightly newer Lotus but even a "newer" Lotus on a 2010 is knocking on now and you are just postponing the same issues to deal with on another car. If you are keeping long term I would have no problem sticking money into something to keep it nice. You will get a small portion of if back come resale but these things are a labour of love. 



#12 fiveoclock

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 05:04 PM

Sell it as it is or break it. Add less money than you would have spent on it to the amount you get for it and buy a nice one that hasnt been let go and brought back to life, 



#13 mbes2

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 05:35 PM

Remember, its not a rusty old Vauxhall Astra ... so how bad is the car for you to think it needs that level of restore. ? 

 

Need photos posted here 



#14 Nev

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 06:12 PM

Some pics of the g/f that they claim to be failing at the fixture points would help - sounds like porkie pies, as a good dob of resin and a bit of multiway weave would fix most issues in 30 minutes.

 

I did some g/f work early this year for the first time in 25 years and it reminded me just how easy it is to use.

 

PS: g/f = glass fiber (not girlfriend!)


Edited by Nev, 11 December 2018 - 06:13 PM.


#15 oakmere

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 08:22 PM

The glass fibre structure on mine still looks like new when cleaned. What would cause it to crumble?

#16 jules_s

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 08:52 PM

All I can think of is the jack nuts rusting out



#17 mbes2

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Posted 11 December 2018 - 09:48 PM

Ask the garage to take you for a ride maybe lol

#18 IJP

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 09:32 AM

Some pics of the g/f that they claim to be failing at the fixture points would help - sounds like porkie pies, as a good dob of resin and a bit of multiway weave would fix most issues in 30 minutes.

 

I did some g/f work early this year for the first time in 25 years and it reminded me just how easy it is to use.

 

PS: g/f = glass fiber (not girlfriend!)

 

 

I've worked with glass fibre quite a bit - not on cars but it's the same principle. I've seen the car and looked at the mounting points myself. The glass fibre appears to be very thin and it's dry perhaps not wetted out properly. The rear clam is not original as it was replaced twice due to people driving up its rear when parked. Put it this way, pick a part of the body shell, grab an edge with your fingers and twist - it crumbles.



#19 IJP

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 09:35 AM

Completely agree with Mark...

 

In answer to your question... Do I think it is viable to get a garage to do all of the work with their markup on parts and labour charges, and probable lack of familiarity with the Elise platform - In general, NO.

 

Fact is, it depends on a few things.

-What outcome are you looking for?

-Do you enjoy and are you capable when it comes to messing with cars?

-Is it a labour of love that you want to drive again for years to come, or is it thorn in your side that you want to fix up to cut your losses.

 

I assume that the base car is £7-9k depending on condition?

 

Whether you plough an extra £15+k into it through a garage or plough an extra £10+k into it through DIY you sill "only" have a £15k+ car depending on finish and quality of work.

 

If it was me, the decision tree would start with the "labour of love or cut your losses" question.  If the latter, just sell as is, no messing.

 

If you can't or won't get your hands dirty, seriously consider just selling, unless you feel as though you can get over the amount that you spent and enjoy the thing.

 

If you are happy to get your hands dirty, make a list of things to do, prioritise it, draw a line as to your minimum viable standard (and obviously factor MOT regs) and then chip away at the other less important/cosmetic jobs once it's back on the road.

 

thumbsup

Time and a business prevent me running any "projects" myself, so this is not an option, plus it's my wife's' car :huh:



#20 IJP

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Posted 12 December 2018 - 09:37 AM

You can now buy brand new clams - http://www.lotushardtops.com/ which might help rather than trying to repair and salvage what's left.

Seen those and that would be tempting depending on the costs to sort out the running gear






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