Well, itís basically all ready to pull out the motor, but I have to wait till the kids have enough free time to do it with me! With soccer, homework and going to a Giants game last night (gotta have priorities, right?) there just has not been time. Iíve pulled the driveshafts and got most of the wiring out of the way, but they are real excited about the actual removal part.
In the meantime, Iím thinking and planning. Cause I have to do something!
So, I came up with a list of projects Iíd like to do. Some of this is for now, some is for after itís all back together and running, sort of a phase 2,3 etc. down the road.
1. Redesign the rear motor mount. Currently, the rear mount (CE of the motor) is a beefy strap clamped around the end, then connected to the stock upper motor mount location. I donít like this setup because a portion of the clamp is actually over the inlet screen, which is not well attached to the motor itself. This appears to be what actually damaged the motor. The clamp to screen was solid, but the clamp and screen rotated together on the motor and damaged the posts and connector when everything broke and rotated. (you can see this in the photoís on page 1). I see two options here. Either a) modify/remove the screen so the clamp is directly on the motor or b) replace the clamp with a simple CE bolt on plate that connects to the same mounting point. Either way Iíll add a lower torque bar to reduce motor rotation. This will require welding a tab to the frame, once I get the motor back in Iíll have to tow it to a shop to have that done. Iím sure the torque bar itself will be enough to solve the problem.
2. Install a blower for the motor. Maybe not needed, but I like the idea of not only extra cooling, but also the added protection of having the motor inlets covered up and fed by a filtered blower. Seems like it would help keep the motor cleaner and cooler. Iíll incorporate this in my redesign of the rear motor mount.
3. Replace the component shelf with polypropylene. It is currently clear acrylic (at least I assume Itís acrylic) which looks cool, but it is pretty difficult to work with. Itís brittle, and broken already from where the motor hit it. I thought about replacing it with Lexan, but thatís $$! And with all the wiring and components you canít really see through it anyway, so thereís no real point in it being clear. Iíll just stick with something cheap and easy to work with, but a little more visually appealing than plywood (and quicker since I donít have to seal and paint it).
3. Move 12 batteries up front. Right now all 48 are in the trunk, 36 in the recessed box and 12 in the trunk behind the rear seats. Iíd like to move the 12 out of the trunk and up to the front. To clear out the trunk space and move some weight forward. I have not weighed the corners yet, but the car looks rear heavy. Iíll actually weigh it before doing this to confirm my suspicions that I could use a little more weight up front. The front rack already exists from when the car was lead acid, and the front to rear battery cables are already long enough to reach the front rack, so no major fab work will be needed.
4. Make polypropylene battery boxes front and rear. Iím intrigued by dtbakerís use of 1/4" polypropylene and a heat welder and want to follow in his footsteps here with some nice looking DIY boxes. Well, maybe not nice looking, but definitely DIY.
5. Band all batteries in groups of 6 with a strapper. The strapping is just for organizational neatness and ease of handling.
6. And the biggieÖ add air conditioning! The car had it originally and still appears to have the evaporator and all the underhood wiring intact. But everything else was removed. Unfortunately the open fittings were not capped when the expansion valve was removed, so I assume the evaporator will be bad since itís been open to the elements for a few years. BUT at least it should be replaceable, itís not like Iím starting from ground zero and building an AC system. Thereís plenty of room up front for a condenser, Iíll just have to decide how to handle the compressor. Either pulley off the Warp9, a second motor dedicated to a stock compressor, or a Masterflux style compressor. I lean towards the Masterflux since I donít have a compressor at all right now, but itís pretty steep $$ so weíll see as I get further into that project research. Still a little time for this one, no urgency on getting aircon.
Thatís it for now! Looks like we may have a few hours tomorrow after school, weíll see if we can get that sucker yanked out!