DIY Electric Car Forums banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I own an S10 pick-up that blew a rod and damaged the engine block. So I decided it was time to convert my pick-up into an EV. I have wanted to convert a vehicle for a long a time. It started when I was a high school teacher in ’94 I had a fellow colleague converted a ‘70’s VW bug with his automotive club. I figured if he could teach his students how to build an EV from an existing vehicle I could try it with my students.

Well I missed my chance and it is more than 10 years later and I have a free donation vehicle to convert. I am looking forward to the experience and challenge.

I have little to no automotive experience, I know more about small lawnmower engines then I do about the 4 cylinder engine that is no longer working in my pick-up. I am handy with a wrench and I have been known to change a starter or two in an old Jeep. As for my fabrication skills I have touched a welder, sheet metal or steel since I took some college courses in the 90’s when I was getting my Industrial Science and Technology degree. Basically I am out of practice, but I hope to be to gain some of those skills back during this conversion.

I am looking to get 120–170 miles per charge. It will be used to get around town and from time to time to do some highway traveling to visit family out of town. I may also be used as a commuter so it will get use on the highway during commutes as well. I would like to be able to charge it overnight and be ready for use the next day.

Since the pick-up is paid off I don’t need to worry about paying for a donor vehicle. I am looking to budget the conversion between $5,000-$7,500. This includes outsourcing parts and pieces to expert fabricators as needed.

I have not considered any parts for this EV conversion. I am still in the process of doing research and building a project plan. I hope to capture video of this process to document as well as use the conversion to teach project management skills to teens. So any hints, suggestions and ideas you have on parts would be appreciated.

I look forward to the community’s support and assistance. I will be sure to be as active as possible. I hope to come back with questions and answers as often as possible. Thank you for taking the time to read this long post and thank you in advance for the help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
Hi Q,

I don't think that your range goals are realistic. Certainly not under your budget constraints. If you are using new parts, and paying for any fabrication at all, I think you will be looking at about a $7,000 conversion using lead acid batteries. This would give you a range of about 35 miles. The S-10 is heavy and aerodynamically challenged. Your goal of 120 - 170 mile range might be obtainable with lithium (adding at least another $10,000 to the project), but not at freeway speeds. I think that it would be exceedingly difficult to build an electric S10 that would get over 120 mile range at freeway speeds, even if you spent $30,000 on the conversion.

I am no expert, but this is my opinion. If you could tone your range requirement down, you may be able to build something that you could live with. Mo Range, Mo Money..........

JACK
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Jack,

Thanks for the info. Good to know that I am off base on my expectations. I'm sad, but it is still good to know. I guess it makes sense that Mo Range would cost Mo Money....

I can look at increasing my budget if need be but for now I still need to remove the engine and all related parts. So I can look at changing the budget as I go.

Do you think there is a way to get a 60 mile range at highway speeds and then charging for a few hours prior to hitting the road again? The family that I will be visiting out of town is about 50+ miles away, I imagine they will let me plug in once I get to their house.

Thanks again,
'Q'
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Jack,

Thanks for the info. Good to know that I am off base on my expectations. I'm sad, but it is still good to know. I guess it makes sense that Mo Range would cost Mo Money....

I can look at increasing my budget if need be but for now I still need to remove the engine and all related parts. So I can look at changing the budget as I go.

Do you think there is a way to get a 60 mile range at highway speeds and then charging for a few hours prior to hitting the road again? The family that I will be visiting out of town is about 50+ miles away, I imagine they will let me plug in once I get to their house.

Thanks again,
'Q'
Based on what I’ve read so far on all of the various forums here, I believe that there’s a wealth of good information about how to go about doing a successful EV conversion. There seems to be quite a variation in the range of what some EV’s are capable of. That’s probably due to the differences in the weight of the vehicles, their total energy supply, the sizing and rpm operating range of the motors being used.

From what we’ve gathered from various motor manufacturers they all seem to agree that it’s best to also use a transmission for your type of application. This is because without it these motors will run at a low rpm and will generally draw significant amperage and not allow the fan to properly cool the motor. Apparently these motors have an effective operating range of 2000 to 4000 rpm which is perfectly suited for a properly geared transmission.

I’m chiming in because we recently posted information about using an automatic transmission for these types of conversions. In fact, one of the vehicles where our transmission is being used is an S-10 pick-up. You can read more about it on the following link.
http://www.diyelectriccar.com/forums/showthread.php/automatic-solution-ev-conversions-53052.html

Good luck with your project!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
"Do you think there is a way to get a 60 mile range at highway speeds and then charging for a few hours prior to hitting the road again? The family that I will be visiting out of town is about 50+ miles away, I imagine they will let me plug in once I get to their house"



Absolutely! You could achieve a 60 mile range with an S10 (at modest freeway speeds) if you are willing to spend $15,000 - $20,000 on your conversion. The battery pack alone will cost over $10,000. Look in the "Garage" here to see what others have done. Also look at EVAlbum. Many S10s have been converted. The motor adapter and coupler are readily available off the shelf at many EV suppliers. Be aware that you could probably buy an existing S10 conversion for considerably less than what yours will end up costing. But building it is half the fun (as long as it gets finished!!)

JACK
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Based on what I’ve read so far on all of the various forums here, I believe that there’s a wealth of good information about how to go about doing a successful EV conversion. There seems to be quite a variation in the range of what some EV’s are capable of. That’s probably due to the differences in the weight of the vehicles, their total energy supply, the sizing and rpm operating range of the motors being used.

From what we’ve gathered from various motor manufacturers they all seem to agree that it’s best to also use a transmission for your type of application. This is because without it these motors will run at a low rpm and will generally draw significant amperage and not allow the fan to properly cool the motor. Apparently these motors have an effective operating range of 2000 to 4000 rpm which is perfectly suited for a properly geared transmission.

I’m chiming in because we recently posted information about using an automatic transmission for these types of conversions. In fact, one of the vehicles where our transmission is being used is an S-10 pick-up. You can read more about it on the following link.
http://www.diyelectriccar.com/forums/showthread.php/automatic-solution-ev-conversions-53052.html

Good luck with your project!
Thanks for the additional info... to keep it simple I think I will keep the manual in the truck and maybe even go clutchless.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
"Do you think there is a way to get a 60 mile range at highway speeds and then charging for a few hours prior to hitting the road again? The family that I will be visiting out of town is about 50+ miles away, I imagine they will let me plug in once I get to their house"



Absolutely! You could achieve a 60 mile range with an S10 (at modest freeway speeds) if you are willing to spend $15,000 - $20,000 on your conversion. The battery pack alone will cost over $10,000. Look in the "Garage" here to see what others have done. Also look at EVAlbum. Many S10s have been converted. The motor adapter and coupler are readily available off the shelf at many EV suppliers. Be aware that you could probably buy an existing S10 conversion for considerably less than what yours will end up costing. But building it is half the fun (as long as it gets finished!!)

JACK
Jack thanks again for the helpful hints. I spent some time in the garage and on EVAlbum. I must say my expectations do seem high for the budget I have. I will have to look at some changes. I look forward to more helpful hints.

One a side note: I pick up some air tools at a benefit auction, this should help the with the process of removing the ICE out of the s-10.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
66 Posts
If your looking for 100+ mile range the you going to have to go lithium. Now my 15KW pack gets me 60 mile range but you want to keep your pack from draining more than 70% so I won't drive it more than 50 miles. This is how I look at it anyways. I paid 5k for my battery pack also I don't recommend ordering batteries online I went to the company and picked them up in person. I drove 350 miles to get them but I didn't get riped off either. If you must order them online have them sent C.O.D. if the company will not do that then don't buy them.

Charlie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
hello all

we have had very good luck with carl from the electric car co.
we just ordered the 2nd pack for our new build. for the new ac motor and curtis 1238R.
we have posted our experiences with carl and the hi power batteries. we would recommend carl.

thanks kevin
topeka elctric motor inc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
The S-10 is one of the more popular and easier vehicles to convert. That is one of the reasons I chose an S-10 for my first conversion 4 years ago. Pictures of my S-10 are posted in the DIY Garage. Doing plenty of research before you start will help greatly. At the time, I had even less auto repair experience than you do.

The most time consuming part of the process was removing all the ICE parts that are no longer needed. Fabricating the battery racks was the next biggest part. The remainder of the conversion went surprisingly well. I did the conversion in my garage when I had spare time over about a year. Looking back with what I know now, things could have gone much faster. When I started four years ago, there were not the resources available that we have today (such as this site). Back then, I felt like I was out in the wilderness doing my conversion. Today, there is a local EV club (www.suneva.org) in my area, with many people to turn to for input and assistance. See if there is a local group near you. If not, there are always the nice people here to turn to for assistance.

One warning for you: This can get addictive. I currently have a nice GMC Sonoma with a seized engine in my garage awaiting conversion. I need to find an EV 12 step plan...

IMG_0001.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
hello
here is how we did our s10, like other memebers have stated there are are many versions of how to do an s10.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01JHTZThs0I

this is the video of our truck. dont know how come the sound in not in sync, but you can still get the idea.

i would be glad to answer any questions you might have.

thanks kevin
[email protected]
Very nice and informative video!

Carl seems to be very knowledgeable and willing to share his expertise.

Thanks for posting that link!

Mike @ FB Performance Transmission
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
hello
here is how we did our s10, like other memebers have stated there are are many versions of how to do an s10.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01JHTZThs0I

this is the video of our truck. dont know how come the sound in not in sync, but you can still get the idea.

i would be glad to answer any questions you might have.

thanks kevin
[email protected]
Kevin,

Thank you for sharing this is great and very exciting for me to see. My S10 is almost the same as your except for the year and the 3rd door. I mean I got the same color, extended bed and extended cab. Once I finish removing the ICE and associated parts I may be giving you a call or reaching out to you for more advise.

I got the word from the Mrs. the other day that we don't have the funds for me to be spending on parts and what have you. So, it looks like I will be spending time on the weekends just getting the vehicle ready for the the EV parts.

Thanks again very impressive and inspirational.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Cornelius,

Thank you for the words of encouragement. I haven't even started the project yet and I think I am hooked. But first things first, still do my research and reading through my Haynes book on the S10 so I am familiar enough with the parts to start taking the ICE out.

I look forward to hearing about your Sonoma project and seeing the progress.

I will also look for an EV Club. I think we do have one here in the Denver area and will reach out to the group as well. I look forward to the help from the community. I am thankful this site exists as I am not sure I would have been able to do this on my own like you did back in the day.

Take care,
'Q'
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Kevin,

Really thank you for the video and the offer to help out. As I have mentioned before on other post I still need to remove the ICE parts. But I think I will be modeling my project to be similar to yours.

I'll keep in touch,
'Q'
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
If your looking for 100+ mile range the you going to have to go lithium. Now my 15KW pack gets me 60 mile range but you want to keep your pack from draining more than 70% so I won't drive it more than 50 miles. This is how I look at it anyways. I paid 5k for my battery pack also I don't recommend ordering batteries online I went to the company and picked them up in person. I drove 350 miles to get them but I didn't get riped off either. If you must order them online have them sent C.O.D. if the company will not do that then don't buy them.

Charlie
Charlie,

Thank you for the info and advice. Based on the advise so far and the reading I have been doing it looks like I will have to go lithium.

Also thanks for the documenting your project. I look forward to watching more videos and learning what you did.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
92 Posts
thanks Q

thanks for the compliment, and like i mentioned earlier,dont be affraid to order batteries from carl clark at the electric car co.

give him a call and tell him i told you to call, hes a neat guy.

thanks kevin
topeka electric motor inc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
167 Posts
Jack,

Do you think there is a way to get a 60 mile range at highway speeds and then charging for a few hours prior to hitting the road again? The family that I will be visiting out of town is about 50+ miles away, I imagine they will let me plug in once I get to their house.

Thanks again,
'Q'
The math to do this just doesn't work. 60 miles range will require at least 15kwh of energy and more likely 20kwh in an S10 at highway speeds. A charger plugged into a typical 110V outlet will not be able to put more than 1.5kwh back into the battery pack per hour it is plugged in. So, unless your visit will be more than 10 hours, you won't be able to recharge enough to get home again. If you could plug into a 220V outlet for a clothes dryer or electric stove, then you might be able to charge at a rate of 6kw or 8kw although the cost of the charger is then going to be very high.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
akaQ,

If you haven't already seen this site, http://evhelp.com/S10_Conversion.htm, has quite a bit of practical information on S10 conversion. He has pictures, parts list, wiring diagrams, etc.

Also, when you start your project, please create a profile here, or in evaddicts (or both) and blog about it!
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top