Success - new soft top and seals on Federal Elan

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Success - new soft top and seals on Federal Elan

Postby tomatcbl » Wed 16.08.2017, 01:57

I thought about reply to old posts, but thought it easier to start afresh.

I have owned my NMY federal elan for 5 years now and have always suffered from wet knee syndrome. In fact I would say it was more a shower than a dribble, particularly when going around a 90o right hand corner, water would simply flood down onto me. Coupled with that, I had never been able to see out of the back screen because it was so degraded that with oxidation that nothing would clean it.

So over the last few weeks, I have replaced the front seals and the soft top. It was raining cats and dogs today and not even a kitten came in. I was completely dry no matter what. AND I can see the corvettes receding into the distance through my rear screen whenever I am on a road with slightest curve.

Seals: Thanks to Jamie, I replaced the two A pillar seals and the header rail seal with a new set from him. The integrated A-pillar seal and header rail seal really is the way to go. It stops water getting in, rather than trying to find a way for it to drain out through undersized holes when it does get in. Fitting the seals was easy. Jamie gave clear instructions and was always on hand to answer any questions. An incredible supportive guy.

Hood: I ordered a replacement hood from CabrioWorld. $660. I watched the video on replacing the softtop on the Elan Restoration site on YouTube - a must for anyone thinking of doing it. Great video, clear explanations. Removing the old hood was pretty easy. The most difficult parts were ensuring the seals on the bottom of the failing pillar seals came away in one piece. If I was not replacing the header seal, getting that out cleanly would have been nigh impossible. The guidance about getting the hood started correctly at the back is spot on an essential for a good fit. The hood did not come with strings to help pull the brake cable through the side as the one in the video - but that was solved by cutting a wire coat hanger and soldering the brake cable to the end of the coat hanger and using the coat hanger as a large needle. Fitting the flaps under the falling pillars is an absolute bear but slow and steady was the order of the day. Fitting the header seal back together was challenging as the CabrioWorld hood has no reference points, but there are so many reference points on the frame that as long as you take care, it is pretty clear what you need to do.

Left A pillar.tif

rear left.tif

It took me about two days to remove the old hood, refresh the frame and refit the new one. Well worth it - wish I had done it years ago. :D
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1991 Yellow M100
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Re: Success - new soft top and seals on Federal Elan

Postby marvic » Wed 16.08.2017, 02:37

Great success story. Looks good! :D
1991 Elan M100
1985 Caterham Super Seven
1952 MG TD
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Re: Success - new soft top and seals on Federal Elan

Postby clemo » Sat 19.08.2017, 21:25

Excellent ...
Yet to fit mine .
Still waiting to get my car back ! .
Always good to know that it went well .
Jim Clark S2 - 1/13. The one with the Yellow spoke wheels . No 613 on dash (pushed in to factory in wrong order 615 on tub)
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