Archive for Random

What car can I convert to Electric?

When I was first starting out considering building an electric car, the most obvious choice to me was to use a Chevy s10 light pickup truck.  Everything I had read about electric conversions and available conversion kits all seemed to cater to a Chevy s10 without any issues or difficulty. 

But I did not want to use a Chevy s10.  So if you don’t want to convert a Chevy s10 into an electric car like I did not want to do, and if you are considering converting your current car or picking up another one to use for the conversion, here is a list of the most popular vehicles being used to convert below.  

Here is what to look for in a car to convert into an electric vehicle:
The most easy conversions seem to be vehicles from the early 80s to early 2000s with a good body, frame, interior and high mileage.  Vehicles with a manual transmissions and a 4-cyl. engine It is possible to use an automatic transmission, but it seems a lot more difficult to marry the motor with the transmission, and I have read that using an automatic transmission consumes more battery power than a manual transmission.  With a manual transmission, all you have to do is leave it in 3rd gear and drive! 

For all of these vehicles listed, a motor to transmission adapter kit is available and easy to find.  If you do not want to use a vehicle listed here below, you will have to make your own adapter.

List of Vehicles that can easily be converted into an electric vehicle:
Chevy S10 pickups, Geo Metro, Dodge Colt, Shadow, Rampage, Daytona Ford Escort and Ranger, Porsche 914, Honda Civic, Mazda B2000 pickup, Datsun pickup, Plymouth Sundance, Pontiac Fiero, Suzuki Samurai, Sidekick, Toyota pickups, Volkswagen Beetle, Jeta, Golf, Rabit, Scirocco

Electric Car Motors Overview

I am working on a three-wheeled electric car/diesel gas hybrid and I have been researching all kinds of stuff online to help me sort out how to power the vehicle. I wanted to learn about the different types of electric motors available and how effecient they are. Through everything I have been reading, quite a few motor types seem to keep on coming up, so I am going to list them here in order of Greatest to Least Greatest and some of the details.


The Very Best Electric Car Motor
:
3-Phase AC induction motors

Here are some example motors:
http://www.metricmind.com/motor.htm

Let me put it this way – The Tesla uses this type of motor.  AC induction motors are the best because they use the battery the most effeciently (giving you more range), they do not wear out the original transmission of the vehicle they are mounted to and the transfer of power is easier to manage than a DC motor, and they can be used with bigger cars and heavier loads than a DC motor.  Because of this, this is the ONLY engine I would recommend that anyone considers when they are building an electric car.  They cost more than the other two, but they are highly worth it in the long-run for performance.

This motor is configured differently than the DC motors used to power an electric car.  Instead of a controller unit for the DC engine, this replaces the controller with a DC-AC inverter installed in the car.  So you have to purchase more electrical parts required to turn your gas car into an AC electric powered car than with a DC motor.

Tesla Roadster Motor Specs:
375 volts of AC power
weighs 115 pounds
Produces 14,000 RPM
Connected to a gearbox with only 1 gear – ratio of 8.2752:1

 


Second Best Electric Car Motor:
DC Series wound electric car motors

Example Motor Here: http://www.evparts.com/products/street-vehicle/motors–dot/96-to-192-volt-street-vehicle-motors/mt2117.htm
This is the same type of motor that is in your electric drill out in the garage. These motors are popular because they have high torque and are helpful to electric car applications to apply that torque when accelerating from a complete stop.  The Advanced DC Series wound motor is by far the most popular of the electric car motors being used, but I think that is because of the price point.  This is the same motor that I have been recommended to use by plans I have seen for various types of electric car conversions.  If you have been thinking about converting your car from a gas engine to an electric powered vehicle – you will find all kinds of kits with this type of motor.

The problem with these motors or any Series motors is that they cannot be used at constant speeds where loads vary.  They also have to always be run under load.  They are not the best choice for use in a car unless you are driving in a very flat terrain all of the time – like Illinois for example – so if you live in a mountainous state – this will not work for your daily drive.

Worst choice for an electric car motor:
Permanent Magnet DC electric motor
This is the DC motor that most people are familiar with – the loud motor with brushes.  Permanent Magnet DC motors are mostly used in vehicles smaller than a car – such as motorcycles, bikes, go-karts, and scooters.

TREV 3 Wheel Trike

Since I am obsessed with buidling a three wheel hybrid vehicle, I have been looking around for cool but practical ideas. I came across this design, and thought I would share since it seems extremely practical and obtainable to anyone looking for something like this.

TREV 3 Wheel Trike:
This three-wheel concept was designed by students at the University of South Australia. The concept, named Trev, is an electric lithium-ion-powered green car.

Trev features a lightweight chassis, fiberglass body and one door. The concept can carry two passengers tandem-style (one behind the other). It can travel at a top speed of 75 mph with a range of 90 miles before a needed recharge.

Sugru

Have you ever wanted to make your own products – toys, action figures, rings, jewlery, little cars – anything?  Prototyping, molding, casting, and working with material to create products has generally been a barrier of entry for a lot of people.  When you think about making something, most people immediate think of using wood, clay, or paper to try to design a prototype.  However, there are a lot of cool plastic products on the market today that can be easily molded, formed, shaped, and cast to help you accomplish simple prototyping needs. 

I just read about this crazy plastic type goo you can buy called Sugru.  You can make buy the commercially available stuff, or you can make your own homemade stuff – to shape whatever you want. 

There is a commercial version here:
http://sugru.com/

and a homemade version here:
http://www.instructables.com/id/How-To-Make-Your-Own-Sugru-Substitute/

CAUTION: the homemade version gives off some wicked fumes – but they are not bad for the buzz!

If you want some ideas for what you can do with this stuff – check out this site:
http://sugru.com/blog/

30-Proof Alcohol Whipped Cream

Anybody need to top that Bailey off with some alcholic whipped Cream?

HEY – NOW YOU CAN!   There are some new alcholic whipped cream products hitting the liquor store shelves.  The one I saw was called “Whipped Lightning” – it looks like a canisters of whipped cream, like Reddi-wip, but is actually an alcholic infused treat.  This particular can said it has 16% to 18% alcohol by volume – but i have heard of other brands packing 30-proof!  Hey – forget the and Bailey’s Irish Cream, I’ll just suck down a can of this stuff! 

Why you are at it – just go buy some adult chocolate milk and add this to it!

Adult Chocolate Milk

So who doesn’t enjoy a good chocolate milk every once in a while?  Especially a chocolate milk that is an alcohol-spiked 40-Proof!

If you have not heard about this new product then you may be surprised to discover that  two female marketing geniuses created a product called Adult Chocolate Milk.   The tasty treat — that packs a 40-proof punch — became an immediate success when Tracy Reinhardt spiked some chocolate milk with vodka and then let everyone on her Facebook account know about it.  Tracy’s friend Nikki saw the update along with a ton of her other friends interested in the product, and Nikki helped Tracy to bottle and sell the new concoction.  Check out their site and “Re-taste your youth. At 40 proof.”

They plan to introduce new flavors — including adult orange cream, adult fruit punch and adult limeade — soon.

Top your adult chocolate milk with a little alcoholic whipped cream if the 40-proof stuff is not strong enough for you!