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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everybody,

In the last two days, I've noticed two very strange things with my Honda del
Sol. I should explain that it is somewhat taken apart as I finished up some
wiring projects. As I was putting it back together, I noticed two things:

1. While charging with my small charger (Skycharger B6AC RC charger) I'm
getting a voltage on the chassis frame relative to the AC circuit ground. I
noticed this when the trouble light I usually hang from the hood sparked
when I put it back. The trouble light has a metal hood and hook that are
connected to the AC circuit ground. My multimeter says this is about 90V.
If I try to measure current, I get a small spark when the probes touch, but
get no measureable current. During this time, the small charger is
connected to a grounded circuit, but the car is not. This voltage relative
to ground stops when the charger turns off.

2. I'm also getting a measurable voltage between chassis ground and the
Thundersky Li Ion cells. It is about 135V when the pack voltage is 153V.
I'm sure I checked this when I first got the car and had no measurable
voltage between the 12V system and the 150V system. This voltage happens
whether I'm charging or not. I've tried to measure current on this circuit
and also get sparks, but no measurable current. The leak is fairly rapid as
I get enough charge to cause another spark in a few seconds.

The current state of the car while this situation is happening is a little
strange. I've removed all the new wiring I installed. Also, the manual
disconnect before the main contactor is open. The main contactor is also
open since the ignition is off. Finally, the B+ connection to the
controller is not connected. That shouldn't matter since the manual
disconnect is also open. The M connection to the controller is also not
connected. These unconnected cables are well insulated from the frame
(sitting in their rubber covers and not touching metal).

The B- connection to the controller is connected. The pack connection to
the charger, DC controller, etc. were all removed when I removed my new
wiring box. The controller is a Kelly KDHD. The main charger is an Elcon,
but I don't think that is implicated because it is completely disconnected
(both AC inputs and DC outputs).

The positive and negative battery connections are only the high-current
cables and a low-current cable (one to most positive cell and one to the B-
on the controller) going to my new wiring. Since that box is removed, these
are currently sitting as open circuit Anderson PowerPak connectors.

For normal charging, this shouldn't be an issue because I'll have the AC
circuit ground attached to chassis ground, but I would really like to
understand why I have leakage causing my chassis ground to float along with
the batteries. It's also causing strange behavior when I start charging
with the small charger and I think it could easily damage something.

I can only think of 3 causes of this:

- The controller is doing something and backfeeding high-voltage onto the
chassis ground. It doesn't seem like it should be doing that!
- A cable has lightly shorted to the frame somewhere. In general, the
cables are well protected and shouldn't be rubbing. There is one spot as
the cables go into the trunk to the second bank of batteries that I have to
check.
- Something is causing the cells to conduct electricity to their mounting
brackets and then the frame.

Does any of this make sense? Does anyone have any hints about how to look
into this further? I plan to disconnect the B- connection to the controller
as soon as the Skycharger is finished. Anything else to try?

I'm grateful for any hints or suggestions you can provide.

Mike




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Registered
Joined
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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I know it's a little strange to answer your own post, but I just finished
disconnecting the B- cable to the controller. It looks like that solved all
the problems. I no longer see any voltage between chassis and battery cells
or between chassis and earth ground.

Does anybody know why a Kelly controller would act like that? Will this
behave normally when finally connected correctly?

Thanks for any help.

Mike

-----Original Message-----
From: [email protected] [mailto:[email protected]] On Behalf
Of Mike Nickerson
Sent: Monday, February 28, 2011 11:43 PM
To: 'Electric Vehicle Discussion List'
Subject: [EVDL] Battery Leakage Question

Hello everybody,

In the last two days, I've noticed two very strange things with my Honda del
Sol. I should explain that it is somewhat taken apart as I finished up some
wiring projects. As I was putting it back together, I noticed two things:

1. While charging with my small charger (Skycharger B6AC RC charger) I'm
getting a voltage on the chassis frame relative to the AC circuit ground. I
noticed this when the trouble light I usually hang from the hood sparked
when I put it back. The trouble light has a metal hood and hook that are
connected to the AC circuit ground. My multimeter says this is about 90V.
If I try to measure current, I get a small spark when the probes touch, but
get no measureable current. During this time, the small charger is
connected to a grounded circuit, but the car is not. This voltage relative
to ground stops when the charger turns off.

2. I'm also getting a measurable voltage between chassis ground and the
Thundersky Li Ion cells. It is about 135V when the pack voltage is 153V.
I'm sure I checked this when I first got the car and had no measurable
voltage between the 12V system and the 150V system. This voltage happens
whether I'm charging or not. I've tried to measure current on this circuit
and also get sparks, but no measurable current. The leak is fairly rapid as
I get enough charge to cause another spark in a few seconds.

The current state of the car while this situation is happening is a little
strange. I've removed all the new wiring I installed. Also, the manual
disconnect before the main contactor is open. The main contactor is also
open since the ignition is off. Finally, the B+ connection to the
controller is not connected. That shouldn't matter since the manual
disconnect is also open. The M connection to the controller is also not
connected. These unconnected cables are well insulated from the frame
(sitting in their rubber covers and not touching metal).

The B- connection to the controller is connected. The pack connection to
the charger, DC controller, etc. were all removed when I removed my new
wiring box. The controller is a Kelly KDHD. The main charger is an Elcon,
but I don't think that is implicated because it is completely disconnected
(both AC inputs and DC outputs).

The positive and negative battery connections are only the high-current
cables and a low-current cable (one to most positive cell and one to the B-
on the controller) going to my new wiring. Since that box is removed, these
are currently sitting as open circuit Anderson PowerPak connectors.

For normal charging, this shouldn't be an issue because I'll have the AC
circuit ground attached to chassis ground, but I would really like to
understand why I have leakage causing my chassis ground to float along with
the batteries. It's also causing strange behavior when I start charging
with the small charger and I think it could easily damage something.

I can only think of 3 causes of this:

- The controller is doing something and backfeeding high-voltage onto the
chassis ground. It doesn't seem like it should be doing that!
- A cable has lightly shorted to the frame somewhere. In general, the
cables are well protected and shouldn't be rubbing. There is one spot as
the cables go into the trunk to the second bank of batteries that I have to
check.
- Something is causing the cells to conduct electricity to their mounting
brackets and then the frame.

Does any of this make sense? Does anyone have any hints about how to look
into this further? I plan to disconnect the B- connection to the controller
as soon as the Skycharger is finished. Anything else to try?

I'm grateful for any hints or suggestions you can provide.

Mike




_______________________________________________
| REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
| Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
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_______________________________________________
| REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
| Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
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Registered
Joined
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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How old is the kelly?

for a time the series DC kelly controllers weren't isolated (from input to
frame).

Matt
----- Original Message -----
From: "Mike Nickerson" <[email protected]>
To: "'Electric Vehicle Discussion List'" <[email protected]>
Sent: Tuesday, March 01, 2011 3:05 PM
Subject: Re: [EVDL] Battery Leakage Question


>I know it's a little strange to answer your own post, but I just finished
> disconnecting the B- cable to the controller. It looks like that solved
> all
> the problems. I no longer see any voltage between chassis and battery
> cells
> or between chassis and earth ground.
>
> Does anybody know why a Kelly controller would act like that? Will this
> behave normally when finally connected correctly?
>
> Thanks for any help.
>
> Mike
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [email protected] [mailto:[email protected]] On
> Behalf
> Of Mike Nickerson
> Sent: Monday, February 28, 2011 11:43 PM
> To: 'Electric Vehicle Discussion List'
> Subject: [EVDL] Battery Leakage Question
>
> Hello everybody,
>
> In the last two days, I've noticed two very strange things with my Honda
> del
> Sol. I should explain that it is somewhat taken apart as I finished up
> some
> wiring projects. As I was putting it back together, I noticed two things:
>
> 1. While charging with my small charger (Skycharger B6AC RC charger) I'm
> getting a voltage on the chassis frame relative to the AC circuit ground.
> I
> noticed this when the trouble light I usually hang from the hood sparked
> when I put it back. The trouble light has a metal hood and hook that are
> connected to the AC circuit ground. My multimeter says this is about 90V.
> If I try to measure current, I get a small spark when the probes touch,
> but
> get no measureable current. During this time, the small charger is
> connected to a grounded circuit, but the car is not. This voltage
> relative
> to ground stops when the charger turns off.
>
> 2. I'm also getting a measurable voltage between chassis ground and the
> Thundersky Li Ion cells. It is about 135V when the pack voltage is 153V.
> I'm sure I checked this when I first got the car and had no measurable
> voltage between the 12V system and the 150V system. This voltage happens
> whether I'm charging or not. I've tried to measure current on this
> circuit
> and also get sparks, but no measurable current. The leak is fairly rapid
> as
> I get enough charge to cause another spark in a few seconds.
>
> The current state of the car while this situation is happening is a little
> strange. I've removed all the new wiring I installed. Also, the manual
> disconnect before the main contactor is open. The main contactor is also
> open since the ignition is off. Finally, the B+ connection to the
> controller is not connected. That shouldn't matter since the manual
> disconnect is also open. The M connection to the controller is also not
> connected. These unconnected cables are well insulated from the frame
> (sitting in their rubber covers and not touching metal).
>
> The B- connection to the controller is connected. The pack connection to
> the charger, DC controller, etc. were all removed when I removed my new
> wiring box. The controller is a Kelly KDHD. The main charger is an
> Elcon,
> but I don't think that is implicated because it is completely disconnected
> (both AC inputs and DC outputs).
>
> The positive and negative battery connections are only the high-current
> cables and a low-current cable (one to most positive cell and one to the
> B-
> on the controller) going to my new wiring. Since that box is removed,
> these
> are currently sitting as open circuit Anderson PowerPak connectors.
>
> For normal charging, this shouldn't be an issue because I'll have the AC
> circuit ground attached to chassis ground, but I would really like to
> understand why I have leakage causing my chassis ground to float along
> with
> the batteries. It's also causing strange behavior when I start charging
> with the small charger and I think it could easily damage something.
>
> I can only think of 3 causes of this:
>
> - The controller is doing something and backfeeding high-voltage onto
> the
> chassis ground. It doesn't seem like it should be doing that!
> - A cable has lightly shorted to the frame somewhere. In general, the
> cables are well protected and shouldn't be rubbing. There is one spot as
> the cables go into the trunk to the second bank of batteries that I have
> to
> check.
> - Something is causing the cells to conduct electricity to their
> mounting
> brackets and then the frame.
>
> Does any of this make sense? Does anyone have any hints about how to look
> into this further? I plan to disconnect the B- connection to the
> controller
> as soon as the Skycharger is finished. Anything else to try?
>
> I'm grateful for any hints or suggestions you can provide.
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> | REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
> | Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
> | UNSUBSCRIBE: http://www.evdl.org/help/index.html#usub
> | OTHER HELP: http://evdl.org/help/
> | OPTIONS: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>
> _______________________________________________
> | REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
> | Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
> | UNSUBSCRIBE: http://www.evdl.org/help/index.html#usub
> | OTHER HELP: http://evdl.org/help/
> | OPTIONS: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>
>
> -----
> No virus found in this message.
> Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
> Version: 10.0.1204 / Virus Database: 1435/3474 - Release Date: 02/28/11
>

_______________________________________________
| REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
| Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
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Registered
Joined
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70 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hello Mike,

Connected the B- cable back to the controller and disconnect the B- cable
between the controller and motor and see what happens.

What is happening is that your B- cable is continuous connection from the
battery, through a fuse, through a shunt and in some controllers, is a
straight through connection from the B- bar and M- bar on the controller. I
have two motor controllers that were wire that way and got leakage to ground
through the motor communtator front face to the motor shaft and motor
bearings which was cause by brush dust tracking on these surfaces.

Charging the batteries with a non-isolated charger that had it housing
grounded to the vehicle frame and the AC input plug was self grounding to
the vehicle frame provide a direct path to the chassis.

The charger was bolted directly to the vehicle body and the batteries which
were 2 volt lead cells were in a aluminum battery box was also bolted to the
vehicle frame as well as the motor rotor shaft provided a current path to
the AC ground return.

To prevent current path, I install two more contactors in addition to the
main B+ contactor which disconnects the main battery from the controller
circuit. Note the main B+ contactor has a pre-charge circuit that allows
the B+ battery circuit directly to the controller without the B+ contactor
being on.

Anyway, I wanted two extra contactors which normally are call safety
contactors which can be use as a emergency shutdown. These contactors are
control by the Ignition ON position of the Ignition switch which must come
on first before the Main contactor comes on which is control by the Start
position of the ignition switch or you could get a NO VOLTAGE ON MAIN
CONTACTOR FAULT.

This ignition switch normally opens these safety contactors when the switch
is turn off which now isolates the battery charger circuits from the motor
controller and motor.

One day when I was working on the battery links on the main battery, I got a
arc when I disconnected the link. The charger was off but was still
connected, so I unplug the charger and I still got this arc. I then unplug
the out leads to the battery and did not get the arc. I found out that the
batteries feed back to the charger and was keeping the capacitor bank charge
which cause this discharge.

Not wanting to disconnected a on board charger every time I turn off the
charger, I install one 50 amp contactor on the output B+ to the battery,
this fix prevent the arcing.

I also end up installing two contactors between the main battery packing and
a bank of DC-DC converters which I was also getting back feeding from the
main battery.

I now have the battery pack in a epoxy coated fiber glass box, the charger
is in a fiber glass equipment cabinet where only the charger enclosure is AC
ground. The main AC receptacle is replace with a all nylon connector
housing which is not self grounding.

Install a 2 pole 250 volt 50 amp ground fault breaker which detects the
unbalance between the two feed lines. NOTE. You do not need to have a
ground wire in a ground fault circuit to make it work. In some
installations, this is allow according to NEC.


Roland




----- Original Message -----
From: "Mike Nickerson" <[email protected]>
To: "'Electric Vehicle Discussion List'" <[email protected]>
Sent: Monday, February 28, 2011 10:42 PM
Subject: [EVDL] Battery Leakage Question


> Hello everybody,
>
> In the last two days, I've noticed two very strange things with my Honda
> del
> Sol. I should explain that it is somewhat taken apart as I finished up
> some
> wiring projects. As I was putting it back together, I noticed two things:
>
> 1. While charging with my small charger (Skycharger B6AC RC charger)
> I'm
> getting a voltage on the chassis frame relative to the AC circuit ground.
> I
> noticed this when the trouble light I usually hang from the hood sparked
> when I put it back. The trouble light has a metal hood and hook that are
> connected to the AC circuit ground. My multimeter says this is about 90V.
> If I try to measure current, I get a small spark when the probes touch,
> but
> get no measureable current. During this time, the small charger is
> connected to a grounded circuit, but the car is not. This voltage
> relative
> to ground stops when the charger turns off.
>
> 2. I'm also getting a measurable voltage between chassis ground and the
> Thundersky Li Ion cells. It is about 135V when the pack voltage is 153V.
> I'm sure I checked this when I first got the car and had no measurable
> voltage between the 12V system and the 150V system. This voltage happens
> whether I'm charging or not. I've tried to measure current on this
> circuit
> and also get sparks, but no measurable current. The leak is fairly rapid
> as
> I get enough charge to cause another spark in a few seconds.
>
> The current state of the car while this situation is happening is a little
> strange. I've removed all the new wiring I installed. Also, the manual
> disconnect before the main contactor is open. The main contactor is also
> open since the ignition is off. Finally, the B+ connection to the
> controller is not connected. That shouldn't matter since the manual
> disconnect is also open. The M connection to the controller is also not
> connected. These unconnected cables are well insulated from the frame
> (sitting in their rubber covers and not touching metal).
>
> The B- connection to the controller is connected. The pack connection to
> the charger, DC controller, etc. were all removed when I removed my new
> wiring box. The controller is a Kelly KDHD. The main charger is an
> Elcon,
> but I don't think that is implicated because it is completely disconnected
> (both AC inputs and DC outputs).
>
> The positive and negative battery connections are only the high-current
> cables and a low-current cable (one to most positive cell and one to the
> B-
> on the controller) going to my new wiring. Since that box is removed,
> these
> are currently sitting as open circuit Anderson PowerPak connectors.
>
> For normal charging, this shouldn't be an issue because I'll have the AC
> circuit ground attached to chassis ground, but I would really like to
> understand why I have leakage causing my chassis ground to float along
> with
> the batteries. It's also causing strange behavior when I start charging
> with the small charger and I think it could easily damage something.
>
> I can only think of 3 causes of this:
>
> - The controller is doing something and backfeeding high-voltage onto
> the
> chassis ground. It doesn't seem like it should be doing that!
> - A cable has lightly shorted to the frame somewhere. In general, the
> cables are well protected and shouldn't be rubbing. There is one spot as
> the cables go into the trunk to the second bank of batteries that I have
> to
> check.
> - Something is causing the cells to conduct electricity to their
> mounting
> brackets and then the frame.
>
> Does any of this make sense? Does anyone have any hints about how to look
> into this further? I plan to disconnect the B- connection to the
> controller
> as soon as the Skycharger is finished. Anything else to try?
>
> I'm grateful for any hints or suggestions you can provide.
>
> Mike
>
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> | REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
> | Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
> | UNSUBSCRIBE: http://www.evdl.org/help/index.html#usub
> | OTHER HELP: http://evdl.org/help/
> | OPTIONS: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>

_______________________________________________
| REPLYING: address your message to [email protected] only.
| Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
| UNSUBSCRIBE: http://www.evdl.org/help/index.html#usub
| OTHER HELP: http://evdl.org/help/
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