I'm well past the point of no return now (I can't even see it over my shoulder anymore) and am ready to post a thread. First, the recommended items:
- Your skill level with auto mechanics and fabrication : No fabrication experience at all. I've been a V-dub guy since before I could get a license, so I've done plenty of ICE and body mech/electrical trouble shooting and repair. Some suspension work back there in a restoration of a super-beetle and a scirocco. I do have the support of a couple of Aces with a fabrication shop.
- The range you are hoping to get (how many miles/charge): ~40
- What level of performance you are hoping to get: Quick enough to merge into traffic moving around 50. Our neighborhood dumps out into a 2 lane state highway with a suicide lane.
- How much money you are willing to put into your project : The spousal approval runs to about $15k overall. I think I can make that. The donor was $4k, components and batteries will add another $8k. The donor needs a few things like a new windshield, some paint would be good, lrr tires, airsprings etc.
- What parts you've already considered, if any. : I ordered the bulk of the stuff from EVA last week. ADC FB1-4001 motor, Curtis 1231C, etc. I intend to order an MR2 powersteering pump, and a water heater/pump combo for heating. I'm keeping the AC Compressor and will belt drive it off the ODE shaft. However, despite EVA's typical approach, I am planning on keeping the clutch.
For years, I've thought about doing a project like this. In summer '08, it occurred to me that if I was ever going to convert my own car from gas to electric, I should probably get on with it. Sooner or later, the major manufacturers will get on with making EVs available, then it wouldn't make a lot of sense to go through all of this one your own.
My wife and I started talking about it, and she agreed that I needed some sort of project or hobby to keep from just working all the time. The final straw was an "icebreaker" activity at a men's retreat I attended. We were supposed to identify something interesting about ourselves, and include that in our introduction. It occurred to me that I didn't have anything really interesting since my time living in Germany in the early 90's.
The research and hunt for a donor car began in September. Skipping ahead a little bit, in mid-October, I found a nice little 1997 BMW 318ti with bunches and bunches of miles. 207k of them in fact. It ran fine, and probably would've been a lot of fun to zip around town in as it was. But that wasn't the plan.
So here's a summary of design goals for my EV Conversion Project
- Target Range: 40 miles
- Max Speed: 60 mph
- Typical Top speed: 45-50mph
- Typical Avg speed: 30-40mph
- Typical Route: Home -> School -> Church -> Grocery -> Home ~11mi
- Acceleration: Peppy enough to merge into traffic. I won't be running anyone at stoplights...much.
- Capacity: 2 Adults & 2 kids + light groceries or school backpacks
- Total Budget: $15,000
- Completion Goal: 3/31/09
That's how the whole thing got started. I'll add more entries with pics of the teardown of the "ti". We're still looking for appropriate nicknames for the ride once it's done, so the terms I use to refer to the vehicle may change now and then. I think it'll be related to the number of knuckles that are skinned up.
The car is listed in the garage: http://www.diyelectriccar.com/garage/cars/116
, and I've got an external blog set up: http://mpkwh.blogspot.com
Comments, Warnings, Questions, Suggestions are all welcome!