Source: Lotus West
Author: R. Anderson
Date:
Title: EUROPA HEADLIGHT COVERS
LW# 54BI085



After a stone broke one of my Cibie headlights, I decided to make the plastic covers shown in the photo, above. I imagine these covers steal some of the light power, but they each protect $30 worth of lights. The molds I made were taken from my 1969 early Series II Europa with the original style low headlight pods and fender contours, Later model Europas would require a different set of molds.



METHOD OF CONSTRUCTION

Raise the front of the car as high as possible. Fill the headlight pod with water-soluble clay and smooth until the contour matches the fender line. Make a masking tape and cardboard dike all around the light pod, as shown in Figure I. Then pour plaster on to the clay to form a concave mold. Let it set, then remove the mold and clean the car. Scrape the plaster mold as smooth as possible. Build a wooden box around the mold, oil the concave surface, and pour plaster into the box to form a convex mold. Let it set, then saw the box at the mold parting line so the two plaster pieces will separate, Figure 2. Fill and correct any air pockets on the surfaces of the mold. Set the mold pieces on the floor near the kitchen oven.

Cut a piece of Plexiglas a little larger than what is needed. Bake the Plexiglas in a preheated electric oven at 270F for 7 to 12 minutes. Use leather gloves to put the hot, pliable Plexiglas on the surface of the concave mold. Set the convex mold on, face down. Have someone heavy stand on the mold. (Europa drivers are light, right?)





A cracking sound will occur as the plastic cools. When you remove the plastic it will look something like Figure 3. Trim the edges with a jewelry saw to the required shape. Drill holes and sand the edges with 400, then 600 paper. Then polish on a buffing wheel. The holes in the fender are backed with a drilled and tapped "bobbin", Figure 5, which is laminated, or glued to the inside of the fender with fiberglass and resin. Small screws hold the cover to the fender.

R. Anderson
Elgin, Illinois