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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

I have been reading these forms for awhile now (Thanks for all the good advice and ideas). Unfortunately I need to ask for help rather than offering any assistance or ideas at this time….

I have an Impulse 9” motor by NetGain. My controller is a Kelly KDH14650B. I’m running 12 batteries at 12v each for 144v. My car is a 1999 VW Jetta 5 speed and I left the clutch in working order.

My problem is that I barely have any power! My car can only get up to about 25mph. I have replaced/upgraded the Kelly controller from a KDH14400B to the KDH14650. It was believed that the first controller was bad, and that was the reason it was not supplying enough amps. I was offered either a replacement or an upgrade from both Cloud EV and Kelly (Steven). I chose the upgrade because I need to be able to park in ramp parks for work, which will be my primary usage for the car. After many changes, higher costs and a lot of time involved mounting the new (Larger) controller, I see no improvement. Actually it responds exactly the same as the older, smaller, controller.

I have checked the voltage at the controller terminals and they are reading around 160v. I have taken voltage reading from the PB6 pot box and it is receiving 5v from the controller, at full throttle it is also putting 5v back to the controller. I have also check the amps going to the motor while driving and I am only getting 50amps. From the batteries I am seeing closer to 15amps while driving.

I have no errors being displayed on the Kelly controller. The temperatures here were in the 40’s when I did my testing, and I only drove the car once around the block, so over heating should not be an issue.

My charger is a QuickCharger and is saying the charge is complete and that I have around +160v at full charge.

Below is a list of all major parts I am using and the wiring diagram I followed

Thanks in advance for any suggestions you might have

Conversion Kit 96-144V WarP Impulse Motor Kelly Controller
https://www.beepscom.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=KI-144-I-K

Battery Charger Quick Charge On Board 144V 10A With Select-A-Charge
https://www.beepscom.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=BC-QC-OB-144/10

Contactor Albright SW-200CW-3 12 VDC Coil On/Off
https://www.beepscom.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=CT-SW200CW-3

Controller Kelly 24-144V 650A Programmable High Power OPTO
https://www.beepscom.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=CO-KDH14650B

Motor WarP 9" "ImPulse" Double Shaft
https://www.beepscom.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=MO-00-08259

Throttle PB-6 0-5K Lever
https://www.beepscom.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=TH-PB-6

This is what I followed for the wiring.
http://www.kellycontroller.com/mot/KellyKDHBUserManual.pdf
Figure 5:KDHB Series motor controller standard wiring without Reversing Contactor
page 10

 

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I have the smaller Curtis controller (400amp max) and my car is 3200lbs converted. When I first test drove it, I found power to be dismal. Still, I was able to get it up to 70mph. After doing some research, I found that the current limit and accleration rate on the controller are both adjustable. After adjusting the current limit to the max 400amp, I find the car (while not earth moving) to be average acceleration and I have driven it daily.

Have you talked to Kelly about adjustments that can/should be made to the controller? It sounds like you have everything worked out right and perhaps it's something simple that needs to be addressed. Also, check the ohms that are being produced by the potbox.. It is my understanding that the ohms are what tell the controller how much current to put to the motor, not the voltage. I recall (double check this) that the ohms at full throttle should be between 4500-5500.

I AM NO EXPERT! Just suggestions from someone who just finished his conversion and had similar concerns.
 

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kelly high-power = not so high power.

Controller Kelly 24-144V 650A = 650Max current, 600 for one minute and 260A continuous.... I'd like to see graphs with an actual motor on their website. Real world, not ratings of the parts inside added together.

Has anyone registered more than a few hundred amps from these?
 

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Tell us about (show pictures of if you can) :

Type of battery
type of battery connection (voltage drop, loose, low capacity?, etc,etc) crimp, bolt down, solder, clamp(!!)?
torque specs of connections, did you use hand tightened wing nuts?
rating of cutoff switch (if its there) what is its voltage drop?
what else is connected in series with the controller and batteries?
resistance in the main fuse, contactor,other did you check?
what size cable?
on and on and on and on and on

Most (I won't say all) major components in an ev are thoroughly tested under optimal conditions i.e; correctly installed, correctly matched to other components, proper wire and switch ratings, etc, etc, etc, etc.

There are so many places to lose voltage and current. Just because you read 160v at the controller AT REST doesn't mean that you are not losing significant power under load somewhere else.

I guess what I am suggesting is to check your entire circuit.

400 amps vs 650 amps will make a difference, but a 50 amp draw on a replacement controller (even the same amp rating) probably indicates a problem elswhere in the circuit.

Put the car up on jackstands (drive wheels (SAFELY)), put it in gear, pull and set the pot to a very low draw so the wheels turn slowly. then take your volt meter and check voltage drops across every component and connection in the system. You will find resistance where you least expected it and will probably identify your power robbing culprit. (my money is on battery cables/connections)

Forgive the amateur soapbox

ZD
 

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kelly high-power = not so high power.

Controller Kelly 24-144V 650A = 650Max current, 600 for one minute and 260A continuous.... I'd like to see graphs with an actual motor on their website. Real world, not ratings of the parts inside added together.

Has anyone registered more than a few hundred amps from these?
Kelly kdhb12600b

the Mazda pulled 450+ amps when I stomped the pedal, smoked the tires dry even with 15 6v batteries over the rear axle!

I left it at factory settings and my pot only pulled about 90%

Climbed hills like a pro. 75 on the freeway.

This is not graphed or dyno'd and is not presented by any sort of an engineer or affiliate of Kelly, however, on road performance speaks loudly to me.

respectfully

ZD
 

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It is probably your controller settings. I too have a Kelly, but the 96 volt 400 AMP KDH09401 version for my Honda Civic. Yesterday I spent a long time adjusting settings until I found a good combo.

I found that the Throttle Ramp was too "Slow" so the acceleration took long, so I slid that toward the Fast selection, my Low Voltage Shutdown was set too high for my batteries, so the controller would limit the current under voltage sag.

There is also a selection called Control something, which had three selections, Torque, Balanced and Speed. I have mine set to Speed and so far it is working fine. I still have a ton of settings to go through before I settle on anything.

Just for comparison, I started my test off with the controller set to Balanced, Throttle Ramp at 5, Low Voltage set to 82 volts, High Voltage set to 116 Volts, High Pedal Disable Active and REGEN disabled. I first started driving and I was only pulling 78 AMPs from the batteries with the pedal to the floor and was barely hitting 10 MPH. After fooling around with the settings, I could pull over 160 AMPs from the batteries with the pedal to the floor and I could get up the 25 MPH with the acceleration I was expecting from my little motor. I haven't driven any faster yet because my inspection sticker it out of date.
 

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Kelly kdhb12600b

the Mazda pulled 450+ amps when I stomped the pedal, smoked the tires dry even with 15 6v batteries over the rear axle!

I left it at factory settings and my pot only pulled about 90%

Climbed hills like a pro. 75 on the freeway.

This is not graphed or dyno'd and is not presented by any sort of an engineer or affiliate of Kelly, however, on road performance speaks loudly to me.

respectfully

ZD
well, maybe its a configuration issue with his controller... wonder if the default amp limit is low for his controller.

We need to know more about the bats... they could be sagging so low that the controller goes into limit.
 

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I had the same controller in my S-10 (KDH4650B) and was able to get 35-40 mph on a straight and level road. I sold that on E-bay and bought a Curtis 1231C and am getting up to 77 mph, though on a slight decline, but a good 70 straight and level. Kelly is selling a 200 amp controller as a 650, but Curtis's 500 amp 1231C is FAR better!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
First off…

Thank you everyone for the responses! I knew I came to the right place. Also thanks to Craig Dusing for all of his help, making my adapter plate, motor mount and leading me to these forms.

Let’s see if I can answer some of the questions and try to find the answers to the rest.

I have hooked my laptop up to the controller and played around with some of the settings, but not many. If I remember correctly the current limit is set to max. I tried changing the throttle setting from torque to balance but did not notice any change. I also tried changing the dead zones, just in case. I’ll make note of all the setting in the software and their default settings then post them.

I did speak with Kelly, and continue to work with them. With my old controller I sent them/him screen shots of all my controller setting and they told me they looked fine. That is when they said they thought there was something wrong with the controller perhaps. I did ohm the pot box before putting it into the car, and although it needed a slight adjustment, I was able to get it to go form 0 ohms to 5k. I’m not positive on this but; I believe the Curtis works off ohms while the Kelly works off voltage for the throttle control. That is why I had to add a 3rd wire to the pot box in order to make it work with the Kelly. The only thing in series with the batteries and controller is a shut for my meter, which wasn’t there with the first controller I tried, either was the cut off switch.

Unfortunately I keep hearing bad things about Kelly not living up to their claims of hi amps, and this seems to be my case (Maybe). Although I would think it would still, at a minimum, be putting out 200 amps which would move the car a lot better than 25 mph. I am glad to hear that ZD and TheSGC have had good results with their Kellys. Very promising!!!

I’m leaning towards it being a problem with wiring or the batteries as well, I just wasn’t sure exactly how to go about testing them. But now I think I have some ideas of how to get started. Thanks! But I am still not ruling out the controller. Does anyone know if it somehow could be my motor? I would assume that if it runs, and is not getting hot, or worse, smoking, then it is wired correctly and working fine.

Battery type: Trojan T-1275
Battery cable ends were all soldered.
All connections are only hand tightened, with a wrench. (Not wing nuts)
Cutoff switch has been tried both in series and out taken out of series with same results. It’s rated at 500 amps continuous and 5000 amps surge @ 12v.
I have not done any resistance checking yet, but I will now. I guess I just assumed that there wouldn’t be that much drop (resistance) with 144v created by 12-12v large batteries, to the point that it wouldn’t at least run better than it is, or get really hot and possibly smoke, at those high points of resistance.
Cable size is 2/0 for all battery cables and 4/0 form controller to motor.

I just went out and took screen shots of all setting with in the Kelly software…
Here are the settings. Plus attached pictures of the controller.

Foot Switch = Disabled
Throttle Sensor Type = 0-5V
Throttle Low End Dead Zone = 10%
Throttle High End Dead Zone = 80%
Max Current = 100%
Started Wait Time = 0.5 sec.
Control Mode = Balanced
Under Voltage = 18v
Over voltage = 168
Throttle Up/Down Rate = 80% (roughly, it’s a slider bar)
High Pedal Disable = Enable
Top Speed = 100%
Motor Temperature Sensor = Disable

Please let me know what I have missed in my reply.
 

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I was able to get it to go form 0 ohms to 5k. I’m not positive on this but; I believe the Curtis works off ohms while the Kelly works off voltage for the throttle control. That is why I had to add a 3rd wire to the pot box in order to make it work with the Kelly. The only thing in series with the batteries and controller is a shut for my meter, which wasn’t there with the first controller I tried, either was the cut off switch.
Did you use this diagram for the pot? Did you use the version with the 1k resistor?

Is your contactor controlled by the controller or by the keyswitch (or equivilent)?
edit- nevermind, I see in your picture that you are using a Kelly pre assembly, so the controller is in charge of the contactor.
 

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Try setting the Control Mode to Speed. I tried Balanced and I couldn't get anymore than 78 AMPs from the pack, up hill with the pedal to the floor. My controller is Rated at 160 AMPs continuous, and that is what I got from the batteries after these settings and the Throttle Up/Down set to 3 for faster acceleration:


Foot Switch = Disabled
Throttle Sensor Type = 0-5V
Throttle Low End Dead Zone = 10%
Throttle High End Dead Zone = 90%
Max Current = 100%
Started Wait Time = 0.5 sec.
Control Mode = Speed
Under Voltage = 77v
Over voltage = 116
Throttle Up/Down Rate = 3
High Pedal Disable = Enable
Top Speed = 100%
REGEN = Disable
Motor Temperature Sensor = Disable
 

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I just skimmed the manual from Kelly; since I bought mine, they have added a warning in bright red regarding precharge resistors across any breaker in the high voltage circuit. I wish that warning had been there before I blew up my first Kelly.

Take that warning very seriously Garn. I can say from experience that the Kelly is very vulnerable to poor or no precharge and dangerous situations have been created (runaway motor, flames, welded contactor)
 

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Try setting the Control Mode to Speed. I tried Balanced and I couldn't get anymore than 78 AMPs from the pack, up hill with the pedal to the floor. My controller is Rated at 160 AMPs continuous, and that is what I got from the batteries after these settings and the Throttle Up/Down set to 3 for faster acceleration:

SGC,

Just curious; did you use a pre assembly? Or did you wire it in yourself?
 

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Very nice!

I love your drill pattern on the sink! Takes me back to a few hours of hell in the garage!

I am wondering about the pre assemblies from Kelly. In fact I think I would have a hard time trusting one. I did not use one either. I do own one now (I didn't order it, it came with a partial conversion that I bought), but intend to dissasemble it and wire it myself in the same manner that I did the first one.

Garn, I really am curious as to which diagram you followed for your pot box.
I used a CURTIS-PMC #PB-6 5k ohm pot and followed the diagram with the 1k resister per Kelly instructions. As I mentioned before, performance is good.

ZD
 

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I didn't get a preassembly because I couldn't afford it. The assembly itself looks great, but I really don't know if that is enough aluminum to keep it cool. My aluminum plate was the center of my transmission adapter plates (again, did it myself!) and so far it keeps the controller stone cold, tho I haven't gone more than a 1.1 miles at a time before adjusting more settings.

I also didn't use the Kelly PB5/6 resistor setup. I just rewired my Curtis PB5 to use a triple wire. I did, however, bench test that resistor setup and found that it only has 84% output because of that extra resistor.
 

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i recently installed my kelly 144V 500A, and did not use the 1k resistor. I am fairly certain that you should only use it if you use the motor thermister... since the controller outputs 5V, and the potentiometer is a voltage divider setup (wikipedia voltage divider) with the equivalent of two adjustable resistors and the wiper in between.

see attached picture for a simple test with a 9V battery and your throttle setup

The green is the pot, and measure voltage from the wiper (middle) lead to the - terminal of the battery. the reading should go from 0V to the battery voltage as you turn the pot. This is how you want to set up the kelly except the plus battery lead is the 5 volt source, the wiper goes to the throttle input and the minus battery is ground.

see how that goes
 

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i recently installed my kelly 144V 500A, and did not use the 1k resistor. I am fairly certain that you should only use it if you use the motor thermister... since the controller outputs 5V, and the potentiometer is a voltage divider setup (wikipedia voltage divider) with the equivalent of two adjustable resistors and the wiper in between.

see attached picture for a simple test with a 9V battery and your throttle setup

The green is the pot, and measure voltage from the wiper (middle) lead to the - terminal of the battery. the reading should go from 0V to the battery voltage as you turn the pot. This is how you want to set up the kelly except the plus battery lead is the 5 volt source, the wiper goes to the throttle input and the minus battery is ground.

see how that goes
I used a 5v regulator and did exactly what the Kelly diagrams shows and I got 1v to 5v. Never 0 volts.
 

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i am using the diagram on page 10 of this manual: http://www.kellycontroller.com/mot/KellyKDHBUserManual.pdf

it uses a three wire pot to produce a 0-5V signal. I am not using the thermister or the 1K resistor shown inside the drawing of the motor.

the three wire pot setup is a voltage divider that should be outputting 0-5V. If the pot linearly varies R1 and R2 from 5k-0k and 0K-5k respectively then the voltage goes from 0k/(5k+0K)*5V = 0V to 5K/(5K+0K) = 5V. R1 is the top internal potentiometer resistor in the sketch in my last post and R2 is the bottom one.
 
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