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Hi, my name is Travis! I am a high school student and newbie at ev conversions and automotive engineering in general. I've been looking into doing a conversion for about a year now. I am unsure of what vehicle I'd like to convert. It all depends on what I can afford. I'll post updates here!

One question I definitely have right now is about batteries. What are good options for a beginner on a budget? I really don't want to go with lead-acid because of the weight. I don't know where to buy batteries at, either. Anyone willing to share info on batteries with me, just post here!
 

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The most popular choice for beginner hobbyists are CALB LiFePO4 cells. They are easy to work with, better than lead acid in terms of energy density, and relatively inexpensive.

You can get cheaper cells often by salvaging a pack from a wrecked OEM vehicle, but this takes more expertise and effort to turn into a working pack in your car.

You can get higher densities with a variety of pouch or cylindrical cells. But this approach is also more difficult and can be expensive.

The CALB (and other similar LiFePO4 prismatics) strike a balance that a lot of people at your stage find attractive. There are tons of places to buy them once you figure out exactly what you want.

Buy your batteries late in the game, as battery tech and prices move rapidly (in a good direction).
 

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Hmm, I would imagine that unless you're very wealthy indeed, this is going to be beyond your budget as a high school student. Think about a bike, motorcycle or off-road vehicle instead of a car- a car will cost too much just for cells.
 

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Hmm, I would imagine that unless you're very wealthy indeed, this is going to be beyond your budget as a high school student. Think about a bike, motorcycle or off-road vehicle instead of a car- a car will cost too much just for cells.
Actually a high school student with a job might have more spending money than many adults because all of their money is discretionary. An adult with a family might have an extremely limited discretionary budget. At EVCCon 2013 a high school student (Robert Hrabchak) brought his fantastic 1999 Porsche Boxster conversion which he paid for himself. Zilla 1K, WarP 9 motor, 34 Thundersky 180AH cells.
 

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Wow, just the cost of the cells alone would make a dent in tuition- fine educational project but I wouldn't let my kid drop $15k on anything related to a car!
 

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I would get two years of college for what I've spent back when I was that age. Now, I'm not sure.

I have learned more doing the hands on stuff of converting and planning than I did going through a bunch of different circuits in a book. :rolleyes:

I wish I would have started with an electric bicycle first. There are a bunch of different kits and designs out there, and as a bicycle tourist, I would like to try and make a bike that could go 200 miles in a day. It is probably much easier and less expensive.

I'm not sure who you are, and what skills you have. Or what your motivations are for this vehicle, but if it is educational or a desire to get a career in the automotive field, look into EcoCar. http://www.ecocar2.org/ecocarchallenge
 
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