February, 2008

Th!nk thinks bigger

Plugs and Cars

nk CEO Jan Olaf Willums made a return appearance at the Cleantech Forum in San Francisco this week. He sat down with Todd Woody, Business 2.0's s Green Wombat. The small 2 seater Th!nk nk City is rolling off the Norwegian assembly line and 500 cars are set for March delivery. Cars will be delivered in London and Paris and Scandinavia.

2008 100

Charging Up on Roadtrips

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

I'm considering taking the car on some slightly longer journeys this summer and don't want to be caught out in the middle of nowhere with a dead battery, so I ran out and purchased a Honda generator that can charge the car for four hours to get a few more miles out of it, if necessary. I tried firing up the generator with a little gas and it didn't go into overload with the Zivan charger at the 60% (12 amp) setting. The generator puts out 1600 VA (technically 13.3

2008 100
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Trending Sources

NC Transportation Center

Plug In Partners

I t's fair to say that the plug in hybrid ( watch video ) was born in California at UC Davis through the vision and tenacity of Andy Frank; but now, as the idea and the technology begins to mature and spread, another State and another University is joining the effort: Here's the story from Channel Nine news : N.C.

2008 100

New Brakes and Local Lithium Supplier

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

I took the 914 back to A&P Specialties yesterday to upgrade the front brake calipers with ones from a BMW320i. The brake pedal definitely feels different. I can push it a lot farther towards the floor and the pads seem to bite quite a bit more. I hope this will help with any emergency braking I might have to do. Given the sluggish acceleration of the vehicle, I started looking into lighter batteries.

2008 100

On Prius

Plugs and Cars

There's much I should be blogging these days and hopefully will shortly. The pathetic CARB staff ZEV recommendations ( here ); Bob Lutz's latest inanity about inefficient windshield wipers effect on electric cars' range; London's step backward on the congestion charge. I'll get to them. But for now, enjoy a pointed chuckle. Check out the blog Stuff White People Like on the Prius. Reminds me to blog about that Lexus ad campaign casting a spell around the letter h.

2008 100

Magazine Article and 914 EV Wiki

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

I ran out to Barnes and Noble today and picked up the March issue of Sports Car Market magazine. My 914 was featured on page 38 along with John Benson's 914 DC conversion! I hope Electro Auto doesn't get even more swamped by the publicity. I'm glad these EVs are getting coverage so more people can see what's possible.

2008 100

Smoothing out the DMOC acceleration/braking

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

One of the annoying behaviors of the motor system in my AC 914 kit is that the default DMOC445 parameters causes the acceleration and braking to have oscillations. In physics speak, the application of the positive or negative torque happens so quickly that the system is underdamped.

2008 100

More Trending

New Tranny Fluid, Battery Filler and EV Toolbox

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

I tied up a bunch of loose ends today on the 914EV. I replaced the transmission fluid with the synthetic Royal Purple fluid from ElectroAuto. The transmission seems to spin more quickly and run quieter, but that is a highly subjective assessment. I'll know more by the end of next week. I tried using an automatic battery filler from NAPA to fill the batteries, but the nozzle kept jamming and the weight of the water in the tank wore out my arm muscles.

2008 100

DC-DC Installed and New Brake Parts

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

In was eager to get the new DC-DC converter installed so I left work a bit early and got to work so I could still drive the car to breakfast with my girlfriend tomorrow morning. Here's the mostly final installation. The wiring is a bit messy because I had to cut all the tie-wraps off from the original setup. I just wanted to try this out for awhile before taking the time to clean it up. The DC-DC converter fits rather nicely in the old space.

2008 100

New DC-DC here and Tranny Fluid Too

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

I let out a major sigh of relief today when the new Iota DC-DC converter showed up today along with the synthetic transmission fluid that ElectroAuto said they would send me. I'll start the installation tomorrow after finishing my third week of commuting to work. I've been biting my nails over the past few weeks, living in fear that my 12V battery would suddenly run out on the freeway in the rain as I drove with my headlights on. Here's the Iota DLS-45 12V power supply.

2008 100

BMW Hammers One More Nail in Hydrogen Coffin

Plugs and Cars

Even as BMW clean car honchos tour the globe with the Hydrogen 7, the German automaker could be coming to terms with reality. According to Drive, an Australian magazine The head of BMW's clean-energy technology, Jochen Schmalholz, says hydrogen-powered cars are still 15 to 20 years away from being on the road "in significant numbers" and revealed the German maker is also working on an electric vehicle.

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