September, 2008

Cutting the Motor Mount and Being Stubborn

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Based on the drawing I made yesterday, I pulled out my handy 1/4" plate of steel and tried to fabricate the rear motor mount plate. After tracing the outline and center-punching the holes, I started to cut out the perimeter with the sabre saw. Having never done this before, it surprised me that it took the better part of half an hour to just make this one cut. Even with a new blade, the sabre saw cuts through 1/4" steel at about 1 mm every four seconds.

2008 100

Curbside EV Charging Comes to Portland OR

Plugs and Cars

Curbside EV Charging Stations are sprouting in Portland Oregon. Full story here. Hat tip to David W

2008 100
Insiders

Sign Up for our Newsletter

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Trending Sources

Featured EV Video: Craig Dusing's Chevy S-10

DIY Electric Car

This weekend we filmed some footage of Craig's S10 EV. I thought it was a very nice conversion although he wants to make it even cleaner still. The truck had plenty of pep and good range. If you have questions about this conversion, this is the place to ask.

2008 100

Plug-in Manufacturers Grow

Plug In Partners

I t wasn't that long ago that I remember a Chrysler ad that bragged about how its new Charger, with the big V 8, was a hybrid. it burned gas and rubber. Now, the very ungreen Chrysler is changing its tune. Might was well, especially when your competition is well into the second verse of a very different song. In the last few weeks, not only has Chrysler made announcements, so has Mazda, Hyundai, and Nissan.

2008 100

Just passed 6000 miles and fixed PakTrakr Issues

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

Two quick updates for the 914 EV since I've started working on the Civic-EV: First, I just passed 6000 EV miles and the car is still going strong. Second, the PakTrakr system has been acting up and reporting battery failures. At first, this really worried me that my battery pack wasn't doing well. Many first-time EV builders burn out their pack early.

2008 100

Horsepower for your EV conversion

Electric Cars are for Girls

How can I calculate how many horses or kw for a particular vehicle conversion? I would like to put an AC motor right in front of the differential

2008 89

Modifying the Hood and Continuing the Rear Battery Rack

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Back in this post , the second picture from the bottom shows where the group-31 batteries interfere with the support strut on the front hood. I used the hacksaw to make two slits in the hood support around the interference and then used the small sledgehammer to crush the interference flat. I initially tried to be gentle, but this took far too long and I ended up just bludgeoning the support flat. I suspect that some frustration with the project encouraged me to be more forceful than necessary.

2008 100

More Trending

Making Electric Vehicles Work for American Families

DIY Electric Car

Recently, I was discussing my vision of electric cars on american roads with a few different people. During the course of the conversations, I explained the limitations of range, battery life, charging and top speed. What I ended up explaining was that pure EVs are going to require an acceptance of different driving habits from most drivers. There will be exceptions, of course, but for most families there will be 2 major options: Drive hybrids or have 2 cars.

2008 100

Adapter plate update

Honda S2000 EV Conversion

Well I haven't updated the blog lately because there hasn't been any progress lately. I'm really stuck waiting to install the motor and tranny now and that means this adapter plate and coupler need to get finished. After some incorrect parts came in I finally got some pre machined parts I've been waiting on. Here is the main adapter plate. The pre drilled holes you see are ready to fit the ADC FB1-4001A motor.

2008 40

Batteries are Here!

Open Source Civic EV Kit

I can't believe it! I ordered the batteries on Monday and the delivery guy showed up on Wednesday! I wasn't here, but he came back on Thursday and dropped off the LifeLine group-31 batteries. Here's the delivery truck with the liftgate. The battery packaging came in very good condition on a pallet. I didn't have enough space in my 1-car garage to store it, so I removed all the packaging and stored the batteries in their cardboard boxes under the rear of the Civic.

2008 100

Capturing the Misaligned Holes on the Adapter Plate

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Perry Harrington, who manufactures the adapter plates for Electro Automotive, requested that I post some information on the mis-aligned holes in the Civic adapter plate. While I don't have time to take precise measurements, I will attempt to take relevant pictures so that Perry can infer where the holes need to move. This is the bolt hole on the transmission side just above the throw-out arm for the clutch. The top edge of the picture is parallel with the top edge of the adapter plate.

2008 100

Blockages from the Motor/Transmission

Open Source Civic EV Kit

After attaching the motor to the transmission, I attempted to install the whole assembly in the car to find any issues. One thing I should have done a long time ago was remove the hood. Don't forget to disconnect the washer fluid hose before you remove it. This allows much more engine hoist room and lets more light in when I'm working at night in my tiny garage. Here's the motor/transmission assembly.

2008 100

Tentative Motor Mount Drawing

Open Source Civic EV Kit

I attempted to draw a tentative motor mount plate for the tail end of the Warp9 motor. Here is the drawing in Google Sketchup (click to enlarge). I'll be drawing this on a piece of paper today and seeing if it works. The four mounting holes for the end of the motor (5/18" - 18) are at a funny angle, so I may just trace them out and then draw them in later.

2008 100

Buying batteries

Open Source Civic EV Kit

With progress moving forward on the motor/transmission, I took the leap and bought twelve Lifeline GPL-31MT batteries. PowerStride battery had the lowest prices online plus free shipping. They were also gracious enough to give me a 3% discount for ordering 12 batteries. The final cost was $3200.20 and they should be here Friday or Monday. Here's the link to the product. Let's see if my estimations on the battery rack dimensions turn out to actually fit the batteries

2008 100

Shortening the Front Rack to Remove Blockage

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Whew! I think I finally broke some inertia and got moving forward a bit. One thing that helped is that I got an old square box that I can use as a tiny workbench out in the driveway. I can clamp things to it and work without bending over or kneeling on the ground. This makes a huge difference in the ease of my drilling and hack-sawing.

2008 100

Attaching Flywheel to Warp9 Motor

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Here are the instructions provided by Electro Automotive to install the adapter and flywheel to the motor. Separate adapter ring and profile plate. They were bolted together for ease of shipping. Bolt adapter ring to motor with 3/8"-16 allen capscrews provided to 35 ft-lb of torque. (I I added blue threadlock too) 3. Bolt adapter profile plate to adapter ring with 1/2" - 13 bolts provided. Torque to 35 ft-lbs. I added blue thread-lock too.

2008 100

Attaching the Motor to the Transmission

Open Source Civic EV Kit

ElectroAuto instructions continued: 13. Installation of adaptor on motor is complete. Now install the motor/ring/hub assembly on the transmission bell housing. You will need to purchase new bolts of the appropriate size, thread, and length to accommodate your bell housing and the profile plate. Use the original factory locating dowels. If these dowels were not salvageable, order new ones from the dealer for your make of vehicle.

2008 100

Conundrums over Batteries

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Ever since I heard the not-so-great cycle lifetime of the Deka 9A31 batteries, I've been scouring the internet to try and find a replacement group-31 AGM battery. I've added several candidates to the spreadsheet above (click to enlarge) and, at this point, I'm leaning towards the Concorde batteries. They're made for aircraft, have a good Peukert exponent and have a reasonable cycle-life.

2008 100

Firewall Rack Spacers and Steering Plumbing

Open Source Civic EV Kit

Well, things are going slow. I climbed South Sister last weekend and this weekend I'm showing off the electric 914 at the Alternative Energy and Sustainable Living Show in Hillsboro. In the meantime, I've done a few minor things. I have to remove the transmission to bolt it to the motor, so that involved removing the firewall rack. I could have jacked up the car and lowered the transmission out the bottom, but this is easier for the moment since there are no batteries in the vehicle.

2008 100

What about the Pickens Plan?

Plugs and Cars

The good news about electricity as a transportation fuel for cars is finally breaking through to the mainstream. GM’s centennial celebration in mid-September saw the unveiling of the production version of the Chevrolet Volt, still scheduled for appearance in showrooms in November 2010. Hundreds of articles were published asking if the Volt can save GM. GM’s bad boy Bob Lutz even appeared on the Colbert Report, to mixed result. Video embedded below post.)

2008 100