Monday, August 17, 2009

New Video Postings

The juggling of electric car conversion issues, video shooting, and video editing has been a bit of an adventure. Long time friend and business partner Phil Becker used to say:

1. I know how to parachute.
2. I even know how to make parachutes.
3. I have all the necessary components of a parachute.

So this should be simple. All we have to do is jump out of the plane, sew up a parachute, put it on, and pull the cord, before we hit the ground.

In any event, my wife is off to Jacksonville to help her daughter and visit her grandson, and so this weekend I did some video editing. Actually we have a LOT of footage lying around. And we're making good progress on the car. I'm quite excited about it I think it's going to be very good - once the usual set of small problems is overcome.

In any event, Brian's stepson Kurt is actually enrolled in a video production program over at SIU Carbondale, and although just starting out, he's been with us this summer acting as camera man.

I just posted a one hour video on Front End Disassembly. This is basically disconnecting various wires and hoses from the engine and dismantling the front bumper/headlights/radiator to reveal the engine. BMW calls this final assembly position. Incredibly, you have to do all this to do almost anything to this engine. Like change the alternator. Or air conditioning compressor. Or starter. You can't really work on ANYTHING on this engine without completely dismantling the front end of the car. And it is nontrivial. It involves evacuating the airconditioning system, draining the radiator, etc.

In any event, when complete, we should have full access to virtually all components of our system without all this front end removal, or that is my intention.

I have also completed editing another one hour segment on engine removal. At the end of this one, we will have the drive train completely removed from the car, the engine and transmission demated, and it features a discussion of the electric motor and controller we've selected for the car, and points out some less expensive options.

Hope you enjoy.

http://evtv.me/mini/FrontEndDissassembly1280.mov
http://evtv.me/mini/EngineRemoval1280.mov

Jack Rickard

5 comments:

  1. I am grateful for your philanthropy and generosity publishing your EV experience for all to see. I am sure your efforts will make a real difference and encourage others like myself to push on with their own EV conversions, all for the greater good IMO. I am in the middle of a 1999 Porsche Boxster conversion being performed by Revolt Custom Electric in Austin, TX. Your video segment on BMS failures due to EMI disruptions just happened to these guys on their first lithium conversion, which is causing delays until they find a workable solution. Mine will be their second lithium conversion. I will let them know about your site for additional tips! In our Boxster, we are using a Warp 11, lightweight flywheel, high performance clutch, Zilla 2K controller, K2 Peak LiFePO4 batteries (about 20kWH pack), eVision, and a water cooled Manzanita PFC40 charger. The car has been torn down, and the guys are using digital mapping with CAD software to architect battery and component placement in the car to maximize space. We acquired, but have not yet started installing components. Based on your story, the Brusa charger might be a better option for managing the batteries. It seems the BMS issue is one of the most confusing and complicated tasks to overcome, and your solution seems practical and cost effective. I will talk to the guys at Revolt about your BMS workaround and see what they think. Thanks and good luck to us all!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am grateful for your philanthropy and generosity publishing your EV experience for all to see. I am sure your efforts will make a real difference and encourage others like myself to push on with their own EV conversions, all for the greater good IMO. I am in the middle of a 1999 Porsche Boxster conversion being performed by Revolt Custom Electric in Austin, TX. Your video segment on BMS failures due to EMI disruptions just happened to these guys on their first lithium conversion, which is causing delays until they find a workable solution. Mine will be their second lithium conversion. I will let them know about your site for additional tips! In our Boxster, we are using a Warp 11, lightweight flywheel, high performance clutch, Zilla 2K controller, K2 Peak LiFePO4 batteries (about 20kWH pack), eVision, and a water cooled Manzanita PFC40 charger. The car has been torn down, and the guys are using digital mapping with CAD software to architect battery and component placement in the car to maximize space. We acquired, but have not yet started installing components. Based on your story, the Brusa charger might be a better option for managing the batteries. It seems the BMS issue is one of the most confusing and complicated tasks to overcome, and your solution seems practical and cost effective. I will talk to the guys at Revolt about your BMS workaround and see what they think. Thanks and good luck to us all!

    ReplyDelete
  3. It sounds like you are all over it. The Zilla 2K and 11 inch would make a Boxter scream. The 20 kW pack is a little small. We have about a 24 kW pack in the Speedster and get right at 100 miles max range, 85 miles is very safe.

    I'm playing with a Manzanita PFC-75 at the moment. It does do the constant current/constant voltage step though you have to set the point manually and without any really good indications. It doesn't really do multistage which is less important, but nice.

    The EVision is actually quite good. It provides you quite a bit of info. Charge at a lower voltage (3.75 for Thunderskys and 3.45 for Blue Skys) and don't drive off the end of the charge curve, and you should be alright.

    I just finished shooting a segment where I talk about using Photoshop or some CAD software to work out the batteries BEFORE you start cutting metal. It's actually quite important and I would say that over half the effort in a conversion comes from the battery placement and boxes.

    The BMS thing is a nearly religious argument among those using these batteries. I probably agree we need a good one. There aren't any good ones. Meanwhile between the EVISION and the Brusa you can do pretty well with them. You might engineer an under the hood built in voltmeter with some sort of switch letting you quickly cycle through the cells to check voltages once a week or so. But we haven't found a digital BMS that can reliably operate in the environment and I'm actually scared to death of the current shunt devices - won't allow them near the car.

    Your conversion sounds exciting and I'm sure you are going to wind up with a dream car electric conversion. Enjoy the process. A Boxster is an IDEAL car for this. I've looked at them several times myself.

    Jack RIckard

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  4. Thanks for the encouragement. The guys at Revolt think they have designed a safe and effective battery management solution they are building in-house. I don't know all the details yet, but they just delivered a Mazda3 based on the new system. They are trying to build the system keeping costs down. We will see! Some options I have seen online are ridiculously expensive.

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