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  #1  
Old 05-29-2008, 09:21 AM
kogan kogan is offline
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Default '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

What I'm currently looking for is a motor for a 96 firebird conversion. I'd like to keep the entire conversion cost between $5k-$10k.

What I need is places to find A/C motors and inverters cheap (used?). I would like to go with an A/C motor as I plan on going direct-drive and eliminating the transmission. While those $10k a/c motors look amazing, it is really much more than I want to spend on just the motor. I will also consider D/C motors, but from what I've read so far, they don't get high enough in RPM to run a car direct-drive to highway speeds.

If anyone has any information at all on where to obtain A/C motors with inverters cheap or used, please post here

And for more information on my planned conversion:
First of all, I know a firebird isn't a great choice because of its weight. It sits at about 3300lbs stock, though I should be able to reduce its weight by 1000lbs or more by stripping out the engine, transmission, interior, and by replacing seats, hood, wheels, and glass with light-weight racing components (the front and back windshields are one of the most heaviest parts of a firebird/camaro).

Of course, I'd like a bad-ass electric race car, though that doesn't fit my budget. For now, I'm shooting for 60mph top speed and a 25 mile range. It looks like I've got no choice but to go with LA batteries due to my budget.

But for now, I need an a/c motor preferably one that gets up to 9k rpm and an inverter hopefully for $5k or less.

Thanks for any help you can give guys
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  #2  
Old 05-29-2008, 10:34 AM
adric22 adric22 is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

Unfortunatly, AC motors are very expensive and so are the controllers and inverters neccessary to use them. I just can't justify the cost under any circumstance.

I think a DC motor will work fine for you, even in a direct-drive situation. The main issue will be your voltage and you will need a motor capable of high RPM. For example, my 72 volt conversion maxes out the RPMs around 3,500. It wouldn't matter if the motor were sitting on a table free-spinning, that is as fast as it will go with 72 volts. So if I had a direct drive system, my car would work more efficient, but my top speed would be pretty low. So I would think a direct-drive situation would require at least 144 volts, maybe more.

The firebird is a large vehicle, but on the plus side, you'll have more room for those lead-acid batteries. I've not personally seen a firebird done before, though.

http://galaxy22.dyndns.org/ev-talon
Electric Talon
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Old 05-29-2008, 11:44 AM
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veperformance veperformance is offline
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Thumbs up Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

Dont worry about high rpm since your driveshaft would spin at 2633rpm with 3.27 diff and 225-60-16 tire.Your diff may be a 3.23.
The hardest par is to start from a dead stop since that takes the most current.If you want to save lots of weight look at www.bmrfabrication.com .On the other hand if your budget is tight you may keep your money for the batteries.You ca see some picture of my current prototype at www.veperformance.ca .
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Old 05-29-2008, 12:00 PM
truckdoctor truckdoctor is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

How about this cheaper version :-reversing the gearbox and using DC motor .
Start off from stationary in top gear and as the vehicle speed increases change progressively down the gears into first gear .
If for instance first gear is 10 to 1 ratio , with the gearbox reversed this would equate to motor speed of 2000 RPM and driveshaft speed of 20,000RPM ,obviously the dc motor wouldn't be powerful enough to power the car at this shaft speed (unless it's a really big one )but using a DC motor is the best type ie. high torque at relatively low speed .Good luck
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Old 05-29-2008, 01:08 PM
kogan kogan is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

Yeah, the main issue with going with A/C for me has been the cost. The main issue with D/C has been RPM, efficiency, durability, and future upgrading. I may read up a bit more on D/C to see if I can get it to work okay with direct drive and a heavy car.

I'm primarily wanting to go with direct drive because the car came with an automatic transmission and it will be much easier for me to fabricate something to connect a motor to a driveshaft rather than to a transmission. I'd like to pass on paying a machine shop $1-2k just to make a coupler and adapter plate.

I'll continue research and will hopefully have a motor purchased within a month
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Old 05-31-2008, 02:16 PM
Mustang101 Mustang101 is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

I'm in the process of converting a 94 Z28 Camaro. I have the motor and transmition out of it, but this project is on hold tell I finish moving. I'm moving from Utah to Ohio in three weeks. Once I get to Ohio I plan on using a 9" DC motor with a Zilla, attached directly to the rear diff. I'll let you know how it goes. As far as I know no one has an F-body EV yet.
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Old 05-31-2008, 06:38 PM
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veperformance veperformance is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

There are 2 fbody conversion that i know of ,this one http://www.evalbum.com/123 and mine http://www.evalbum.com/950.
As i stated before from my experience your motor should run below 3k rpm but you will need a large diameter motor for good performance.
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Old 05-31-2008, 08:39 PM
kogan kogan is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

It looks like if I want to get this done anytime soon, I'll need to go DC. I'll probably get a Warp 9" motor and shoot for 144v. I'm a little worried about the DC controllers though.. it seems like I'm always reading posts about them frying. Anyone have a good recommendation on a good (cheap) high-performance controller?

I've taken the gas tank and muffler out of my firebird. I'll cut that bad-boy open and work on making a battery box. It looks like I'll have plenty of room, though may need to stack batteries on top of each other.

Mounting the motor directly to the differential also sounds interesting. I'd like to know how that turns out on the z-28. Can the diff handle the extra weight, or is there an easy way to support it that I'm not seeing?
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Old 06-01-2008, 11:57 AM
Mustang101 Mustang101 is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

Sorry I wasn't clear. I'm not bolting the motor directly to the rear diff, I'm going to us a driveline. I'm not sure about motor placement at this point.
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  #10  
Old 06-01-2008, 03:27 PM
Mustang101 Mustang101 is offline
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Default Re: '96 firebird conversion, on the cheap.

Ok guys, which is better;
Warp9
http://www.evparts.com/prod-MT2142.htm
Advanced DC
http://www.evparts.com/prod-MT2120.htm



I thought about getting this Warp11
http://www.evparts.com/prod-MT2144.htm
but I can get two of the others for the same price.
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