June, 2008

VW Jumps on the Bandwagon

Plug In Partners

A nother major manufacturer is jumping on the plug in hybrid bandwagon.

2008 130

Removing the Fuel and Exhaust Systems

Open Source Civic EV Kit

I spent most of this afternoon and evening removing the fuel tank and exhaust system. Since this part of the car wasn't steam cleaned like the engine compartment, I got complete covered in dirt and gasoline grime. I'm using the floor jack to raise the back end of the car.

2008 130

Google spurs electric car videos

Plugs and Cars

Rechargeit.org , Google.org's campaign for plug-in cars, has issued a call for short videos. If you've got one, explain how it works for you. If you want one, explain why. Videos are beginning to show up on youtube. Jeff U'ren drove an EV1 for three years.well, the vid tells the tale.

2008 130

Step 1: How to plan a DIY Electric Motorcycle

DIY Electric Car

Last week I said that this blog would be part journal, part guide to the conversion process but I've decided to separate those two categories by having a build thread for the bike with pretty pictures and having this blog as a sort of step by step guide. I'll still give you updates here but primarily the build thread will be about how I'm doing it and the blog will be about how you can do it.

2008 100

Which Electric Motor for a Civic Conversion?

Electric Cars are for Girls

I am beginning a project of converting a Honda Civic into an electric vehicle. Can you recommend a motor(s) and drive type for this project?

2008 89

Adding Chain for Engine Pull

Open Source Civic EV Kit

My buddy Andrew is coming tomorrow morning to help me hoist the engine out of the compartment.

2008 130

Civic Engine Removal - Part 1

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Okay, this is an attempt to document the process I used to remove the Honda Civic engine with manual transmission for conversion to an electric vehicle. There will probably be several edits, so bear with me.

2008 130

More Trending

Surprise from Electro Automotive

Open Source Civic EV Kit

While putting the engine hoist away yesterday, the UPS driver came and dropped off a surprise package from Electro Automotive. Here's the mystery package. Can it be??!! ElectroAuto actually sent me. The Civic Adapter Plate!

2008 130

Buying an Engine Hoist

Open Source Civic EV Kit

What's the use of converting an EV if you don't get to buy some cool tools? With vacation coming up next week to remove the gasoline engine from the Civic, I needed to get an engine hoist.

2008 130

Measuring Potboxes and Ramping Up

Open Source Civic EV Kit

My internet connection at home has been down for the past three days, so I'm going to blast out several blog entries today. Due to a conjunction of several events, things seem to be ramping up very quickly with the Civic project.

2008 130

Scoping out the Trunk

Open Source Civic EV Kit

I registered the Civic today at DMV and washed it to get all the grime off. The car is quite zippy as a gas car and is fun to drive. I also removed all the upholstery from the trunk and took some measurements to see just how I could mount six batteries back there. Here's a center view of the trunk.

2008 130

Weighing and Cleaning the Car

Open Source Civic EV Kit

One of the baseline items my colleague highly suggested getting was a curb weight value before and after the conversion. He suggested going to the Jubitz Travel Center where trucks get weighed.

2008 130

Toyota Plug In

Plug In Partners

T oyota President Katsuaki Watanabe made his company's intentions clear yesterday about PHEVs. Here's the story from the LA Times: Toyota promises plug-in hybrid vehicle in U.S.,

2008 130

The Patient has Arrived

Open Source Civic EV Kit

My colleague Ian and I picked up the '92 Civic today. It rattles a bit, but overall is in good condition. The paint is good, the interior is good and it looks like everything works. I'm eager to start tearing out the engine.

2008 130

Prepping for Engine Removal

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Things have been a bit frustrating this past week with my home internet connection down. It will get restored at the end of next Wednesday. I'm relegated to either go into work or camp out under a wi-fi antenna in a nearby parking lot to gather information or keep in touch with people. Life could be far worse, but I enjoy complaining about it. I spent this morning going over the engine removal instructions in the Helms manual.

2008 100

Oil hits $140 a barrel; it's time for plug-ins

Plugs and Cars

It was January 2nd this year when oil hit $100 for the first time. Today it reached $140 , and OPEC warns it will only get worse, and soon. Instead of biting the bullet and facing the need for plug-in cars quick, "solutions" put on the table by the presidential candidates wouldn't have an impact as soon as required to meet carbon and petroleum reduction or national security goals. To say nothing of consumer's need for cheaper transportation fuel.

2008 100

Revisiting the Controller System

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Things have been changing quickly in the EV world these days. I was looking at the new line of motor controllers from Logisystems. They seem to have similar characteristics of Curtis controllers, but at a much cheaper price. I've already put down $2250 for the holistic EV system from Belktronix. This system contains pretty much everything you need including controller, charger, contactor, potbox, battery balancer and DC-DC converter.

2008 100

Getting a Baseline on 0-60 times

Open Source Civic EV Kit

My friend Jonathan was in town this weekend, so we took some time on a traffic free Sunday morning to get some 0-60 times from the original Civic. The first run took 12.70 seconds, but we agreed that I wasn't pushing the car much. The second run was goofed by slow traffic. The third was fairly indicative at 10.33 seconds. I'm sure many other folks could do better than this, but I wouldn't want to push the car much further.

2008 100

A List of Tools and Supplies

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Over the past few days, I've been compiling a list of tools and supplies needed to do an effective electric vehicle conversion. After getting valuable feedback from several people on the Civic-EV Google Group, I came up with the following list: [link] tools-needed If anyone has additional comments, I welcome the feedback. This list will continue to change as we find new information during the conversion process. Cheers, Tim

2008 100

Overflow crowd at DC plug-in conference

Plugs and Cars

News of oil by the barrel and gas by the gallon reaching new highs had been dominating TV and print, so it was perhaps not surprising that the Google/Brookings Plug-in Electric Vehicle Conference saw overflow crowds. The speeches and hallway chatter suggested plug-in vehicles have finally caught the attention of industry bigwigs and policy makers.

2008 100

Taking some initial measurements

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Before I do too much with the vehicle, I wanted to take some measurements so that they wouldn't get lost after I remove the engine. Here are a few items after I pumped up the tires to 40psi: Ground to front-left fender: 24" Ground to front-right fender: 24.5"

2008 100

Elixxer- An Electric Motorcycle is Born

DIY Electric Car

I have been researching Electric Cars since September last year , in that time period I have gone through many plans and thrashed out many budgets as I worked out how a student could make a satisfactory EV. I have planned an RX7, CRX or Civic and pick-up conversion, even to the point of being outbid on eBay for a donor.

2008 100

Getting Interviewed and Finding a Car

Open Source Civic EV Kit

A few new things have happened over the past two days. With the huge jump in oil prices yesterday, I received a call from the local KEX radio to ask about electric vehicles and how they could be part of the solution. James Boggs over at Electronpirate interviewed me today for a podcast about my past conversion experiences and this Civic-EV project. I was hoping that Bob Bath, the original CivicWithACord creator, could join us but I think he might have had problems with his Skype connection.

2008 100

Shelling out Real Money

Open Source Civic EV Kit

I've started to order parts over the past few days since lead times are getting larger these days with the demand. I ordered a Warp9 motor from Carlo at EV-supply in Seattle. I also bit the bullet and decided to try out the Belktronix system for the controller, charger, battery-managment and DC-DC. I still haven't found a donor vehicle, but I've been swamped with preparing for EV-awareness day since I'm the chairperson of the Oregon Electric Vehicle Club.

2008 100

No Garage Space to Work In

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Now that I'm back up to speed with several things on the Civic-EV, it's become painfully obvious that I probably can't make much progress without having a real Civic in my garage to work and take measurements on. This is a bit of a dilemma because I only have a one-car garage and my current electric vehicle (the Porsche 914) is sitting in it, charging up.

2008 100

"Build Your Own Electric Vehicle" truck

Electric Cars are for Girls

Does anybody know what the make is of the car that is on the front cover of his book? Hi, Joe - That's a Ford Ranger. Regards, Lynne P.S. You can

2008 89

"Do it Myself" Electric Car Conversion? No Way!

Electric Cars are for Girls

Since I don't have the tools, the expertise, nor the time, I'd rather pay a mechanic to do the conversion for me. So where are the conversion shops

2008 89

What HP electric motor does my conversion need?

Electric Cars are for Girls

I am just starting to look at building an electric vehicle. I have the mechanical know how but lack the electrical know how. What HP motor should be

2008 89