DIY Electric Car Forums banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have had this thing for 6 years now, and it has been a riot. Its the kind of car that you can drive around at 5mph and still have fun (doing stupid stuff in a parking lot). I now want to convert it to an electric.

Skill:
I am just above average with auto mechanics, I can remove and install anything that involves bolts and seals.
I am ignorant about fabrication, and I don't have any friends who are good at it.

Performance:
I want to get at least 40 drivable miles out of my car at 45 mph with decent acceleration (I am a biker so I have a fear of things that cannot accelerate to get out of danger).

Funds:
i can dump $1000 in to it now and $400 to $500 a month until it is done (no kids yet).

Parts:
I like the Warp9 motor it seems to be a crowd favorite, and a 500 amp Curtis controller.

How Should I start? What parts would be good for my car? Does anyone know where I can get an adapter plate for the VW Transission or should I try and have one made? With my funds what type of battery should I use?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
893 Posts
I have had this thing for 6 years now, and it has been a riot. Its the kind of car that you can drive around at 5mph and still have fun (doing stupid stuff in a parking lot). I now want to convert it to an electric.

Skill:
I am just above average with auto mechanics, I can remove and install anything that involves bolts and seals.
I am ignorant about fabrication, and I don't have any friends who are good at it.

Performance:
I want to get at least 40 drivable miles out of my car at 45 mph with decent acceleration (I am a biker so I have a fear of things that cannot accelerate to get out of danger).

Funds:
i can dump $1000 in to it now and $400 to $500 a month until it is done (no kids yet).

Parts:
I like the Warp9 motor it seems to be a crowd favorite, and a 500 amp Curtis controller.

How Should I start? What parts would be good for my car? Does anyone know where I can get an adapter plate for the VW Transission or should I try and have one made? With my funds what type of battery should I use?

I think your range and speed goals are easily attainable with the components you listed. Search through the garage section here and on the evalbum.com . Look at other VW's. There have been hundreds of them converted to EV's. Read through the wiki on this site. It's a good general idea of what you need and how to do it. Check out detailed websites of already existing conversions like kiwiEV or mine. There's plenty of info.. just take a few hours to read it all.

google is our friend! : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImKJP0FsfAo
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Well after reading and posting (reading the single response) and doing a bunch of research I have come to the conclusion that I should stick with ICE. I just cannot justify the > $5000 I would have to spend on LifePO4 batteries to even come close to my goals. Thanks for all the information on the forums.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Well after reading and posting (reading the single response) and doing a bunch of research I have come to the conclusion that I should stick with ICE. I just cannot justify the > $5000 I would have to spend on LifePO4 batteries to even come close to my goals. Thanks for all the information on the forums.

I was going to say don't give up so quick, but I don't know, it takes a lot perseverance to put one of these things together, unless you have deep pockets and can pay someone to convert it for you or purchase a complete kit.

I'm half-way through my project, so I won't pretend to be an expert like some people on here are, but if you use lead acid batteries rather than LifePO4 and are a good scrounge and can do the work yourself, you can accomplish your goals or at least get close for well under $5000.

Sure, lithium batteries are nice and they're more affordable than they used to be, but once you add on a battery management system and a correct charger because they're really finicky, you can end up with almost as much in the support equipment as you do in the batteries.

I know people like to argue that lead acid costs you more in the long run because they don't have as many available cycles, but not everybody has the kind of coin it takes to start off with lithium. I know I don't.

The 72 volts I'm going to run my trike on is not near what you'd need to power your VW (I'm guessing like 120 volt or more), but so far, I have $600 in a motor and controller and half a dozen smart chargers. I need to buy a reverse solenoid and starting switch solenoid plus cables, etc. yet. With separate chargers for the lead acid batteries I don't need a battery management system and the monitoring will just be half a dozen digital volt meters (unless I decide on 9 8-volt batteries by the time I put this thing together). Batteries can be cheapo Walmart Maxx29's at $85 each or maybe I'll move up to US Battery jobs at $135 or so. Even so, all told, this conversion will come in under $2000.

You'd need a more powerful controller and more batteries and chargers, but still, it can be done pretty reasonably. You just have to be willing to swap out batteries more often. You should even be able to make your own adapter plate with an input shaft adapter made out of a clutch center section. Adapting to the VW transaxle should be pretty simple, and adapter plates are available if you want to spend the $$. Here's a link to a bolt-in solution, but it's going to cost you about $900:
http://www.evsource.com/tls_motor_adapters.php

These guys offer an adapter plus shaft connector for about $500:
http://www.e-volks.com/catalog.0.html

I think at this point with gas still under $3.00 a gallon, it's hard to justify building one of these things if saving money on fuel is the only goal. Of course, $3.00 gas can disappear pretty fast.

Good luck whatever you decide to do.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top