Archive for June, 2009

High Voltage Wiring

Electronics | Posted by admin June 21st, 2009

With the batteries here it’s time to start working on the high voltage wiring. Unlike the normal car power which is 12 volt and grounded to the frame, the high voltage traction power must be isolated. Because of the high amperage all of the wiring will be 2/0 electrical cable.

The first part was to map out where all the batteries are going to go and how the current will be routed. The positive ends need to be next to the negative ends so they can be easily routed with the least amount of wire. 2/0 cable is expensive stuff so measuring well will save money.

The cables all get connected with wiring lugs. These are crimped on with a special hammered crimper. You have to be carefull when you strip the ends not to cut any of the small strands that make up the cable. You also need to be carefull when putting on the lug that all of the strands fit nicely inside. A good wack on the little crimping device with a large hammer makes a good strong joint. The ends are then shrink wrapped with shrink tubing to keep out moisture.

The next step was to look closely at the wiring diagrams provided by Cafe Electric for the Zilla controller. I redrew their diagram to better fit the placement of my components in my car. This excersize also helped in my understanding of the logic and how the system would work. I am going to use two contactors. The main contactor is a Tyco Kilovac. I want to be able to go in reverse without shifting so I am using a special reversing contactor that is actually a dual contactor. This will reverse the field on the motor with the flip of a switch.

Batteries included

Electronics | Posted by admin June 20th, 2009

After a lot of research I decided that the best the best use of the space would be to use a group 31 battery.

Last Saturday at the EAA meeting Lowell Simmons told me about a gentleman up in Melbourne who had a set of 12 Odyssey 12volt 100ah deep cycle batteries for sale. The batteries were purchased by the gentleman named Gerald Wagner for a EV project which unfortunately he would be unable to complete because of illness. Gerald was the author of Electric Vehicle Conversions. The Hawker Odyssey batteries were out of my budget and I am really a few months away from being ready for them, but I thought I would give the man a call and see. This morning I called and we were able to work out a deal. So I drove up to Melbourn with my son to pick them up. My Toyota Previa van was loaded up. At 75 lb each this was 900lbs. The van was heavy but seemed to drive well. All was good till about 4 miles to the exit off the turnpike. The road felt a bit bumpy but a few minutes later we realized it wasn’t the road when one of the rear tires blew out. Not sure if it was the weight, but sure it didnt help. Unloaded some of the batteries and changed the tire, the loaded them back in and made it home safely.

The batteries fit perfectly in the racks I had created. I have room for 4 more batteries if needed. I am going to get the car running on the 12 at 144 volts and see how it performs. If need be I can always add the additional 4 latter.