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Curtis 1238 - fresh OS flash to reuse in a new car.

2002 Views 8 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Peter Lin
Is there anyone out there that can help me reflash and clear a curtis 1238-7501 to give it a fresh OS, to remove the VCL currently programmed on it??

I have a Curtis 1238-7501, paired with an HPEVs AC31 motor, which have both come out of an ex delivery van. Im trying to reuse these in a much smaller fiat 126 conversion, but the existing VCL code is making it difficult. I thought as long as i kept the motor and controller together i would be able to use as they are, but i've now got a VCL fault (51) popping up, plus the throttle and braking is all VCL controlled, which i cant see or change, so will struggle to replicate. (my guess is the fault has been caused by the throttle mis-match). Maybe I'll get lucky and manage to clear the fault by systematically playing with the settings but i would love to just start a fresh.

Unfortunatly the OEM that produced the original van no longer exists, as they would have been my first port of call and I havent tried contacting curtis, as i know they wont be interested in an individual DIYer. Seems a shame if Curtis controllers can only ever be used in there original vehicle, due to restricted access to the VCL, so any help would be greatly appreciated!?

Cheers.
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If you get a PC programming station (cable & software), you can reach out to HPEVs and they may be able to provide a blank OS with the motor characterization for that motor. It's not difficult to flash it, but you have to have the cable. Note that handheld Curtis programmer won't work for this.
 

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If you get a PC programming station (cable & software), you can reach out to HPEVs and they may be able to provide a blank OS with the motor characterization for that motor. It's not difficult to flash it, but you have to have the cable. Note that handheld Curtis programmer won't work for this.
The factory in south California is nice on the phone, but they don't give out free information You send the controller to them and they re-flash it for something over $300.

That's business.
 

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The factory in south California is nice on the phone, but they don't give out free information You send the controller to them and they re-flash it for something over $300.

That's business.
I had a mixed experience with HPEVs. When I tried to get assistance via their main contact, I didn't get anywhere. I then reached out to Curtis, and Curtis while not normally helpful at least provides some contacts and suggested I talk to Brian at HPEVs. Brian ended up giving me a blank OS image with AC-23 characterization which I flashed in a few minutes time and had no problems ever since.

The main angle here is that HPEVs VCL actually interferes with the standard Curtis functionality, making some features completely unusable. That should be enough reasoning for HPEVs to supply a blank OS image - you still pay for their motor, and you still pay for their custom VCL even if you don't end up using it.
 

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If you want to reflash controller. Please contact me on [email protected]
I am having a similar issue with my 1238-7501 controller paired with the HPEVS AC-50 motor. Everything is working correctly on the test bench except as I set the controller's programming for braking regeneration.
I have a Curtis 1314 programming station but there doesn’t seem to be a means of correcting the Code 43, POT2 Wiper High.
I wired up the brake pedal position sensor (0-5 V) which is a hall effect device. I am successfully using a Prius throttle pedal. The brake pedal position sensor is identical to the throttle pedal setup which uses a 5V input, signal ground, and output (0-5V) in a 3 wire connector.
I turn on the regeneration setting in the software as well as activate a brake pedal sensor selection 2 in the software. The overall result is confounding as the motor appears to be responding to the throttle by accelerating and adding braking. The software throws a fault code 43, which is POT2 Wiper High. In the software, Pot2 high is measuring/set(?), 5.5V. I cannot find a means of clearing the fault or overriding the wiper setting. The wiper signal is on terminal 17 of the 35 pin Curtis connector.

I have double checked my wiring and have confidence that it is correct. Is there a work around I am missing?

As best as I can determine, the paired components were originally sold through CandaEV and I have acquired these as used but actually brand new and never used.

All suggestions, questions, and opinions are welcome.
Thank you.
 

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I think we have this figured out in regards to the code 43 fault for the Curtis 1238 Controller. Brian Seymour at HPEVS provided a couple of helpful clues. These were

(a) “We don’t do anything in the VCL when it comes to this.” (referring to the code 43)
(b) “The fault is indicating the voltage is too high on that pin {referring to Pin 17}. If the input is open, the controller has a pull-up resistor to pull the voltage to a fault level and disable the input.”

I’m supposing that many of us don’t use a transducer (i.e., pressure, hall effect, etc.) for the brake regeneration but rather use a potentiometer. My preference was to use a device that didn’t have a mechanical rubbing action just because these wear out.

Although I am using a throttle/brake type 2, the 1238 operating manual for the throttle type 3 (p.16) states “Broken wire protection is provided by the controller sensing the current flow from the wiper input (pin 16 or 17) through the potentiometer and into Pot Low (pin 18). If the Pot Low input current falls below 0.65 mA, a throttle fault is generated and the throttle request is zeroed. Note: Pot Low (pin 18) must not be tied to ground (B-).” Also the manual states in the throttle type 4 paragraph, “When a 3-wire pot is used, the controller provides full fault protection. When a voltage throttle is used, the controller will detect open breaks in the wiper input but cannot provide full throttle fault protection.” While these statements are under Type 3 and Type 4 throttle paragraphs, they seem to also apply to the Type 2 throttle wiring.

The controller is responding as designed when the transducer type 2 throttle is used producing fault code 43. The transducer type 2 throttle utilizes, ground (pin 7), +5V (pin 26) and wiper (pin 17). This scheme then leaves an open between the wiper (Pin 17) and pot low (pin 18) and results in a fault code 43. In further testing, I wired in a 5k ohm pot for the brake (pins 27, 17, and 18) which immediately removed the code 43 and made the controller function correctly for both brake and throttle. I then removed the wiper wire (Pin 17) connection from the pot and added it to the brake transducer. This resulted in the throttle and brake functioning correctly without fault code 43 for the transducer. In this scenario, a 5k ohm resistor is left in place between pins 18 (pot low) and pin 27 (pot high).

In using the transducer, I will not have “full throttle fault protection” without adding additional circuitry and I will hard wire in a 5k ohm jumper between Pot high (pin 27) and Pot Low (Pin 18) to remove fault code 43 and its resulting throttle shutdown. There will be some additional tuning when the car is assembled and tested. This solution moves the project forward with brake regeneration using a hall-effect device.
 
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