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Discussion Starter #1
I see that Canadian Electric has an S10 kit for $8995. Are there other kits out there for significantly less? I'm quite sure going that direction will save time, but what could be the savings to DIY? (budget being the issue)
 

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You can literally save anywhere from $0 to $8999 by going DIY. It just depends on your resourcefulness and your performance expectations.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Are there other kits that are less expensive than Can Elec? Not that I'm only looking at kits but having never done a conversion before, wondering if that is the best way to go?
Performance wanted? 70-80 mile range, 55-60 mph, 4x4 available, utilize all year (will need heat, alberta, canada):).
Thanks for the response.
 

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I have not built an electric car, and given the ambitious requirements, I would say that my electric bicycle doesn't really count. :) However, based off the research that I've done, you need to spend at least 10 grand just for the batteries. A 70 mile range is very difficult if not impossible with lead acid batteries. I have heard of some people literally filling a pickup truck bed with lead acid batteries to get a range like this, but then the bed of the truck is useless. Better battery choices might be flooded NiCd or NiMH. Lituium Ion batteries are out of most people's price range (as if NiCd or NiMH weren't expensive enough right? :) ) You would probably also want to look into using an AC motor. Evidently, they are more efficient than the brushed DC motors that most DIY electric vehicles use. If you want to use a 4WD pickup, then you're probably talking about using even more batteries because you would need to accelerate the extra mass and overcome all of the added frictional losses associated with a 4WD drive train.

Are you sure that you need a 70 mile range? If your commute is 70 miles round trip, then you could probably charge at work and get away with a 35 or 40 mile range which is very attainable. Also, if you really need 4WD (and I don't doubt that you do) you might consider a 4WD car rather than a 4WD truck. Just a thought.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Rotary, that is some great information! Unfortunately, it's not all good news! :(. Don't know if the company I'll be working for (oil) would let me plug in at work. It will be approximately a 30-35 mile commute. If they did, it would be great and evidently viable from the LA batteries.
When you start talking about AC motors and NiCd batteries, obviously $$$$$!
Someone informed me that NiCd batteries are not affected by the cold. Maybe that's my only option in Alberta, if I want to go all year.
 

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From my experiences of the yr of EV ownership of a 94S10, 120V (1400# of lead), 9in ADC motor, yes, you are overly ambitious from where I sit. I did a yr of research of batteries, conversion kits, and individual experiences, before taking the plunge. As someone who has to justify everything done, I’m still sitting on the fence. However the direction of fuel prices may soon blow me off that fence.

Like said before, 4x4 adds weight & lowers mileage. Just look at the window stickers.

How flat is your commute? The battery is one of the largest used in conversions, a US 145 Battery rated at 250AH (20 hr rate) & I avoid exceeding that to keep the plates from “warping” and burning the air-cooled motor to oblivion. Yes, it can do 65MPH or more, but slows down to 45-50 on what I call “moderate” interstate hills on the regular 14 mile commute going. Sometimes I take the back way home on colder nights since the speed limit is 40, but on a steep hill it climbs at 20-25MPH. Performance IS always less on that return trip. That 28-30 mile trip uses up 80-100AH. Theoretically we could double that range for an 80%DOD with this particular battery pack. I choose not to in hopes of extending batt cycle life. If more of 35-40MPH travel is done, then we would push it further. Also it uses at least 10% more AH in cold weather. Undoubtedly, a 144V pack would give better performance, but this truck was not set up for it… but next time…???

Many of us use the EV for shorter commutes and therefore keep the conversion costs low. The longer commutes and higher speeds are not economically feasible. That’s why you always keep an ICE in the stable. Just an opinion… from where I sit.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The commute to work is mostly flat with 1-2 mile downhill grade in final 5 miles. So basically a flat commute. Elevation drop of only 350 feet.
Others have suggested I consider a 4wd car instead of pickup. That might be the way to go. I'm not giving up on the pickup though. I do appreciate the comments and will keep them in mind when I finally begin.
 

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TJL! the cheapest kits i found are the ones at e-volks.com.Probably not exactly what you are after, being mostly for small cars,but gives you an idia on price/performance.Plus fun to check out.:rolleyes:
 

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Are there other kits that are less expensive than Can Elec? Not that I'm only looking at kits but having never done a conversion before, wondering if that is the best way to go?
Performance wanted? 70-80 mile range, 55-60 mph, 4x4 available, utilize all year (will need heat, alberta, canada):).
Thanks for the response.
Hi TJL,

I'm just into the preliminary stages of a DIY conversion. older Audi a4 quatro. I'd love to hear your story and get any heads up you might have. I keyed in on you as I'm in alberta too. Calgary.
 
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