Build Your Own Lotus Seven

Lotus 7 Frame

Since Josh purchased the Blakely, I have been roadster dreaming a bit myself. I’ve found a few Midgets and Sprites that look like fun, but what I really want is a Lotus Seven! Real ones can be pricey though, so I started to look around for replicas and found this. It’s a home-brew wannabe Seven frame, but unlike most “Locosts”, it has actually made it past the fabrication stage. A photo of it with the drivetrain in place is included. It’s listed for $4,850 or best offer here on eBay and I believe it is being offered by one of our longtime readers, Dave at OldSchool Restorations. Hopefully he will chime in a give us more background on this fun, but ambitious project. I doubt you could have a frame welded up for much less, so I am seriously tempted to make an offer…

As found

Here it is before the boys at OldSchool pulled it apart and cleaned it up. It would be nice to know what engine was in there… Where are you Dave?


  1. jim s

    looks like they have more frames that are not listed on ebay including one with a VW/Pcar front torsion bar.

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  2. tom

    Just what the Europa body from yesterday needs…
    I like this and the posibilities it presents.

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    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      I had the same thought Tom. I wonder if everything would line up…

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  3. Chris

    Rat rod!. Only kidding. I ain’t a fan of the genre.

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  4. wc

    Engine & gearbox were Ford. I would hope price paid to museum is greater than or equal to what it and the drive train pulled from it are selling or sold for. Sort of tacky to profit from something donated to a non-profit.

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  5. gunningbar

    Is this what a lotus 7 frame looks like?

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    • Michael

      it is too tall and wide it is also much more complex than a 7, think of some of the Jag powered roadsters but w/o the tail.

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  6. Chuck Foster Chuck F 55chevy

    Yes, it looks like a very good Lotus 7 replica frame, I never drove one but always thought it would be neat to have one, the Caterham 7 replica seemed to be the most widely produced, a fighter pilot Colonel I worked with at 122nd Fighter Wing had one, but it was off the road for some repair.
    How about this idea, put an engine, radiator dashboard, windshield and everything else minimally needed to get on the road, a Lotus 7 version of a dune buggy? Would the open frame have more drag than an enclosed body?

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  7. Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

    gunningbar – This is what a 7 frame looks like, but all the ones I have seen were built with round tubing instead of square.

    Chuck – I like the dune buggy idea. Well, at least until I could find a nose cone and try my hand at bending some aluminum around the front. It would be fun to try to complete this one, but I have a feeling it would be more work than the simple frame would lead us to believe.

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  8. Dave at OldSchool Restorations

    @WC…… tacky for the museum ??? museums sell off periodically, cars that don’t fit their display needs, … The 376 mpg Opel we had came through a museum, others cars over the years as well.
    Engine/trans was pre-crossflow Cortina and I sold it to a shop that is restoring a Cortina
    They could not find an appropriate complete motor, and if we finish this car, we have a Crossflow Kent with dual Webers from a TVR Vixen. Most current ‘builders would put riceburner in it anyway.

    @ jim s ………..yes , we restore a lot more Vintage chassis, than complete cars… and probably have a dozen or so most of the time

    @Michael ….must be the pictures perspective… or you are thinking of a different Lotus… you could not fit a Jag motor in this frame

    @Jesse Sorry , I did not get to reply sooner. The Sevens were a combination of square and round tube,( and had 4 designs)….. and most of the replicas are square tube. One of these days I will post more pictures of the frame…it is a VERY professional job.. probably UK built, as all the tubes have beautiful brazed joinery……..similar to my Buckler that was built there in 1953.
    Builder used complete front suspension, rather than building a-arms
    After restoration, we weighed the chassis…that is what the ” 180″ is on the rear tape..front was 195 total 375

    We typically put partially restored cars away in storage, and offer them for sale, until we can decide on a plan and collect all the bits we need to schedule completing them..
    We spent a lot of time on the frame, but will consider close offer before we continue with it.

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  9. Dave at OldSchool Restorations


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  13. Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

    It looks good to me Dave and if it were a little cheaper and a little closer, I would be seriously tempted.

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