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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Attached is a drawing of what I intend the car to look like when it is finished. I have earlier outdated drawings with circuit/battery diagrams, but my design has changed once again.

My motor arrived last month. It is a race modified Prestolite MTC4001. I purchased it for $500 from Bruce Meland.

It came from the following bike:

http://www.nedra.com/photos/100mphclub/kawashocki_640.jpg

Attached are pictures of the motor.

It will take 192V @ 1000A, and 240V @ 400A without arcing. I plan on running it at 216V/500A, with modifications to Paul and Sabrina's open source controller(have not yet purchased). 83 lb-ft of torque, estimated to be completely flat from 0 rpm to 6,000 rpm at 216V, and 64 lb-ft at 7,000 rpm. Such a restriction will save my transmission, differential and chassis from destruction(it does have TR6 bits in it which are supposedly 'bulletproof'), while also allowing a high top speed should drag be sufficiently reduced(140+ mph). 0-60 mph won't be as fast as I had planned with the Netgain 9", but I'll still be able to do 0-60 mph < 8 seconds with AGMs. 175A continuous current is not too shabby for a 105 lb motor, either(that 175A cont is quoted for a stock Prestolite MTC4001).

Does anyone here know anyone with either a Zivan NG3 charger for sale, or an Auburn Scientific PWC600 for sale? If I come across an Auburn Scientific, for say, $1000 or less, it will save me the hassle of assembling, modifying, and testing the controller, and still allow 192V operation with improved acceleration over what 500A would give(especially with 680A available to the motor!). I'm willing to pay up to $700 for a functioning but used Zivan NG3(I've seen them sold before for $500, but came across the ads after they were sold).

I can't wait to finally have the damn thing operational. It's been a loooooong time since I've started.
 

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Hi Toecutter

Have you had a look at the Hurricane body kit for the Spitfire/GT6

http://www.caburn.demon.co.uk/Contents/CaburnEngineering/Hurricane/

When I was young the Spitfire was always a bit of a girly car - the Hurricane looked much better

I am interested in the modified Paul and Sabrina controller - I am thinking of the same thing for my car - and would love to be able to use a few more volts

I'm only half way through their thread - how do I increase the voltage?
 

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Hi Toecutter

Have you had a look at the Hurricane body kit for the Spitfire/GT6

http://www.caburn.demon.co.uk/Contents/CaburnEngineering/Hurricane/

When I was young the Spitfire was always a bit of a girly car - the Hurricane looked much better

I am interested in the modified Paul and Sabrina controller - I am thinking of the same thing for my car - and would love to be able to use a few more volts

I'm only half way through their thread - how do I increase the voltage?
You just use different mosfets, diodes, and capacitors. It's on page 232 of the thread. Good for a 180v and 700 amps controller.....

WOW! $500 for that motor! I'm probably the cheapest guy around, but I might just have sprung for a motor like that. That thing can take some serious amps....
 

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...


It will take 192V @ 1000A, and 240V @ 400A without arcing. I plan on running it at 216V/500A, with modifications to Paul and Sabrina's open source controller(have not yet purchased).
You're aware that these numbers don't add up right? 240v x 400A = 96kw. 216 x 500 = 108kw. I'm not saying you can't do that, just pointing out that your numbers are not the same. You cannot safely assume that your proposed setting will not arc just based on the assumption of 240 @ 400 not arcing.

Good luck with getting the parts you're looking for and best of luck with the project, it looks like it will be pretty cool!
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Hi Toecutter

Have you had a look at the Hurricane body kit for the Spitfire/GT6

http://www.caburn.demon.co.uk/Contents/CaburnEngineering/Hurricane/

When I was young the Spitfire was always a bit of a girly car - the Hurricane looked much better
I'm not so fond of the hurricane. The open headlamps combined with the huge front grill is not good for aerodynamics; it's probably no better than the original bonnet.

I'm partial to the LeMans style bonnet sold by Jigsaw Racing. I sent them an email asking if it was compatible with a stock bodied GT6. If it is not, I'll probably have to modify my bonnet for the shape, which is something that enthusiasts have done before.

I am interested in the modified Paul and Sabrina controller - I am thinking of the same thing for my car - and would love to be able to use a few more volts

I'm only half way through their thread - how do I increase the voltage?
Another poster addressed this comment, but I am intent on changing out the components inside the controller. I'm going to need higher voltage MOSFETs and larger capacitors for certain. There are MOSFETs made to go up to 300V.

You're aware that these numbers don't add up right? 240v x 400A = 96kw. 216 x 500 = 108kw. I'm not saying you can't do that, just pointing out that your numbers are not the same. You cannot safely assume that your proposed setting will not arc just based on the assumption of 240 @ 400 not arcing.
I realize the numbers aren't the same; that being said, Kawashocki has been used at 192V/1000A and 240V/400A. Those were just operating points; the latter figure was not necessarily where peak power was delivered from the motor, as under that setup, at lower voltages it had much higher current. The 1000A was never more than for a few seconds at a time at the drag strip.

I know for a fact that a stock Prestolite MTC4001 can withstand ~1000A at 108V for at least a few seconds, as that is what one has endured in Ryan Bohm's Nissan 280SX(144V pack, sagged to ~108V under 1000A draw). That's 108 kW, which is as much as 216V/500A that I am planning. Further, battery voltage sag is going to reduce the max voltage to the motor to somewhere around 200V.

175A continuous and 450A for 5 minutes are the specs for this motor. At 500A draw, my battery would be depleted within about 3 minutes(and I'd probably be doing ~140 mph after 1 minute of acceleration).

At higher voltages(> 170V), I do believe the risk of arcing increases dramatically, and that the "max kW input" rule of thumb for how much power a motor can handle begins to no longer apply. That being said, my motor is not stock and i know it has been operated at a high voltage without going *zorch*.

Good luck with getting the parts you're looking for and best of luck with the project, it looks like it will be pretty cool!
I'm intent on doing all the tricks to make it as efficient as possible.

Reverend Gadget's GT6-bodied spitfire only needed ~100 Wh/mile for city driving, and slightly more for a 60 mph cruise! His conversion with 15 Exide Orbitals was at GVWR with 2 occupants and did 30 miles range at 60 mph to 100% DoD(Also note that Rich Rudman measured Exide Orbital XCD30s as delivering each about 280 Wh each at the 1 hr rate, so they'd deliver even less at the 30 min rate). He had a grill block and belly pan, with Kumo LRR tires. Weight was around 1900 lbs. I'll be happy with 120 Wh/mile for the same conditions... but I'm also planning much more radical aerodynamic modifications for mine. His did 0-60 mph < 6 seconds with a 6.7" ADC motor and Zilla 1k controller, set to 1000A.

My conversion will weigh in at under 2,350 lbs, and at least 800 lbs will be in AGM batteries(depends on how much more weight can ultimately be removed from the car to allow even more battery; it may be possible to fit 1000 lbs of battery in it).
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I got a chance to see the control board for Paul/Sabrina's DIY 144V/500A controller today. Quite an interesting product. I hope I have no difficulty getting mine to work, after I order one, that is. I now know that the guides available online are most certainly in need of revision, after seeing how misleading/incomplete they are! I think photo shopping the images in the latest revision to make all of the wire colors consistent is in order(the pictures were taken from an assortment of controllers, with different wire colors used, which makes it difficult to determine where everything goes).

The Deka 9A34 batteries are an optimal choice for my conversion; Ben Apollonio tested them at the 2 hour rate and found they deliver a steady 300W for 116 minutes. If I get my EV's consumption down to 100 Wh/mile at 55 mph, 18 of them will give me about 100 miles range at 55 mph to 100% DoD. Whether or not it will be that efficient, we will see; I do know for a fact others have done efficiency similar to that with modified Spitfire and Karmen Ghia conversions, even if they certainly aren't the norm for EV conversions.

Here is my proposed setup(some of the components which were purchased long ago, but the only major component purchased was the motor, and that was recent):

Major components:

Prestolite MTC4001 motor, $500
Home built controller, 216V/500A, < $700
Deka Intimidator 9A34 x18, $2400
Zivan NG3, $700 (hoping to find a used one for this price or less)
Solectria 750 DC-DC, $250
Homemade BMS, $100

Minor components:

Primer, $30
Paint, $100
CV Grease/ Oil, $15
Low Voltage rewiring parts, $45
PB-6 Throttle Box, $45
Degreaser, $15
Battery Voltmeter, $15
Battery Ampmeter, $15
Motor Voltmeter, $15
Motor Ampmeter, $15
Motor Temp Gauge, $15
Paktrakr, $150
Wire Loom, $31
Grinder Pad/Blades, $12
½” Aluminum Plate, $79
¼” Aluminum Plate, $23
3/8” Aluminum Plate, $41
Plexiglass, $11
500A Fuse with Holder, $100
Precharge Resistors, $20
2x Contactors, $300
Circuit Breaker/Shunt, $220
Metal Rack, $15
Bolts, $20
2/0 Cable, $50
Lugs, $10
Electric Connectors, $60
Fuse Block, $60
Propane Torch, $18
Heatsink Silicon, $8
Fan/Heatsink, $30
Battery Boxes, $130
Tiedowns, $10
Floor Pans, $250
Seat Rails, $31
Tie Rod Set, $18

Efficiency modification:

Superlite “Classic” 14x6 wheels x4, $600
Bridgestone B381 185/70R14 x4, $440
RCI Poly Baja Lowback Seats x2, $100
Fiberglass, $100
Aluminum Sheet, $50
LeMans Bonnet, $700 (may do without depending on budget constraints and opt to fabricate my own from the stock bonnet)


My goal is 0-60 mph < 9 seconds with a top speed of at least 120 mph. Simulation suggests 0-60 mph < 8 seconds and a top speed in excess of 130 mph(more than 20 mph added to that with a 5th gear with a 0.8 ratio added). Car should be capable of ~90 mph continuous.


I will go with a much cheaper and much lower voltage setup if I come across a 72V controller for < $300, and sacrifice the performance, but get similar range by using two 72V UB121100 strings in parallel. But once I make any more major purchases, my decisions will be permanent.

Above all else, range, and then low cost are the goal; if some cheap performance can be sneaked in with an open source controller, I will take it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I just won an ebay bit for a Zivan NG3 for $350 including shipping; it is programmed for LiFePO4 and I will have to send it in for reprogramming, but compared to buying a new one, it is quite a bargain and falls a few hundred dollars below the maximum price I was willing to pay for it!

Now I need to order the parts to build my controller...
 

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I just won an ebay bit for a Zivan NG3 for $350 including shipping; it is programmed for LiFePO4 and I will have to send it in for reprogramming, but compared to buying a new one, it is quite a bargain and falls a few hundred dollars below the maximum price I was willing to pay for it!

Now I need to order the parts to build my controller...
Nice find! Between that and the motor, you have the devil's luck on deals... :p
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Patience trumps luck. At any time, I could have easily put down $800-1000 on an ADC 9", or $250-300 on a 144V quick charge charger, and last year, even a $4,000 kit that included a Rusco charger, ADC 9" motor, Auburn Kodiack, and a bunch of other parts, but I simply decided not to settle for them because they wouldn't give me the specifications I wanted.

I may very well get this car built to the spec I want for under $7000... I intend to use it as a daily driver AND for racing. I had the original design written/drawn up when I was 18, didn't have the chassis until I was 20, and my opportunities to pursue the project always got cut off just before I had a chance to do much. 5 years later, I can't wait to finish putting her together... :D
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I entered. I know what I'd do should I win. A pack like that could possibly set a world record in an efficient enough chassis...
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
You're going to BUILD your controller?
Yes. Thanks to the hard work of Paul Holmes and others, the expense of building a working controller due to repeated component failures(part of the process of designing and testing) is now removed.

Do a search on the open source ReVolt. The design available calls for about $600 in parts if they are all purchased new(including the PCB boards ordered), and is spec'd for 144V/500A peak. It is a simple affair to use the logic board on a controller with a different amount of power or voltage(anything from a 24V electric bicycle to a 288V LiFePO4 conversion and everything in between), as the logic board provides isolation and over current protection, with a user-defined limit between 495A and 800A(I believe it's a single setting that sets a limit for both battery amps and motor amps). The parts can certainly be obtained more cheaply by searching ebay and elsewhere. Snakub, on these forums, lives near me and had a 1600A, 168V controller, built for ~$300 in parts, that had no overcurrent protection of any sort, but he's about to try the ReVolt logic board for his conversion(an additional $150). He could potentially have a working 168V 800A controller for $450.

Vmax and Vmin functions are unfortunately non-existent, much like a Curtis. The difference is that if you choose the right capacitors, diodes, and transistors for your 'power' section of the controller, you can make it to suit higher voltage applications. As long as you limit your nominal battery pack voltage to a reasonable amount based on your motor choice, your motor wouldn't have any problems. I wouldn't use more than a 168V nominal AGM pack on a stock ADC 9" with adjusted brush timing, for example. But it would probably be able to accept 600A at that setting without any problems.

The ReVolt has no rpm limit function. Be sure to have a tach and be sure to stay aware of your motor's operating point while cruising, or you could over-rev it and destroy it.

The ReVolt does not allow shifting between series and parallel using dual motor setups, either, which is something Zillas are renown for.

One area to pay attention to are any air gaps in the casing of your controller. Moisture has been known to get into the controller and short parts of it out. This can be remedied with weather sealing(caulk, ect.), but careful attention to detail will be needed to make it look 'professional'.

The ReVolt is a very crude controller by comparison to the likes of the Zillas or the Soliton1, but it is proving itself. I am aware of one EV using a ReVolt that has so far put 2000 miles on it without any problems. They are relatively new, however, and I am anxious to see how they hold up in the long term, and how they hold up when pushed top their limit(500A for minutes straight careening down a country road at double the legal speed limit). I will explore its limits when I get my EV working. If it blows up, I will let the EV community and designers know, but also it will be known that I am going to put it through some abuse. Most EVs aren't designed to go double the legal speed limit. If it survives this kind of abuse, it will really have proven itself as a viable controller. The logic board is unlikely to fail in such an application, and that is really where Paul's hard work went into, since it can drive a variety of power configurations. I suspect it will hold up just fine.

Otherwise, the trial and error involved in building a controller from scratch would usually mean it's cheaper to buy one, unless you are an exceptionally gifted and/or lucky designer. Replacing current sensors, FETs or IGBTs repeatedly is NOT cheap.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The garage has been cleaned out and progress is now underway.

The conversion is being pursued in the following order:

Remove Engine
Remove Body
Repair Chassis
Repair Floorpan and Seat Rails
Repair Body
Prepare Motor Bay(cleaning/priming/painting)
Fabricate Motor Coupler
Fabricate Adapter Plate
Fabricate Clutch Adapter
Fabricate Motor Spacer Plate
Repair 12V wiring and associated accessories
Install Gauges
Test Motor
Install Pot Box
Fix Tie Rods
Fix Brakes
Fix Parking Brake
Fabricate Battery Boxes
Mount Motor
Mount Controller
Mount DC-DC converter
Mount Charger
Mount Battery Box
Test 12V accessories
Install Batteries
Purchase and install new wheels and tires
Neighborhood Test Drive/Error Correction
Register Vehicle
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Snakub and I have spent yesterday sourcing a sprocket suitable for which to fabricate a coupler for my clutch. I'm hoping to have the car running on a 12V battery for testing purposes very soon.

I heard some good news; I may be getting my former job back November 15th. If that happens, I will once again be a *long* way away from my project again, but I will have the opportunity to save for a LiFePO4 pack and find a used Zilla 1k HV somewhere along the way. This assumes the dollar doesn't collapse between now and then, and it might.

I've also got a prospective buyer for my engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
A machinist is now using his tools to fabricate that coupler. I won't have the car going before I part with it, but whenever I get 2 weeks vacation time saved up, I'm heading back there to get it running(on 12V), and then will bring it back on a trailer.

At least I'll have money for a good controller without destroying a big chunk of my savings, instead of having to build a ReVolt. The ReVolt is a decent controller, but it is missing a lot of things, and its continuous rating leaves a lot to be desired.

If this job lasts at least a year, a 25+ kWh CALB LiFePO4 pack is in this car's future. That would give hella range... ninety 100AH batteries in series would suit it well with a 400A max draw. Easily 200 miles range at 60 mph...
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
I owe this topic an update. Many pieces in the above list had already been taken care of before I posted it. The last time I was able to touch the car, it ran at 48V.

I won't get another chance to mess with it until the middle of this year, and I've been away from it for about half a year already. I miss it. I will be buying the CALB pack when I have a permanent place to work on it.

*edit* pics:



 
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