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6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alright so I apologize in advance for anything I make mistakes on, still an enormous amount of learning I have to do here. Also if there is another thread on this already, please point me that direction, wouldn't want to clutter things up or make anyone repeat themselves.

I'm interested in putting together pretty much the simplest Leaf build one can do. No power brakes, no power steering, no heat, no ac, single speed, etc etc. The Thunderstruck VCU looks like the best bet, as while it has less possible customization than other Leaf solutions... simple is all I'm going for and it fits my rather limited programming skillset.

What would be the bare minimum needed to get such a car moving under its own power at moderate road speeds?

Clearly the VCU, the leaf drive unit, a 360v nominal battery pack, throttle assembly, a dc-dc converter, a 12v battery, f/r/n switch, contactor, whatever hooks up the leaf unit to the drivetrain of the car being converter,.... what basics am I missing here?

Just contemplating my first build and trying to soak up as much information as possible, thank you all for your help.

38 Posts
Have you read through most of this?

645 Posts
According to Thunderstruck, the Leaf inverter will work with 140V (I don't know if it's nominal or minimum, or if it's true of all year motors). The Leaf DC/DC seems fairly straightforward to get working, though I'm not sure about the charger, and it's a huge module for just DC/DC.

You're pretty much on track, though:

  • Battery
  • Motor and gearbox
  • Inverter
  • VCU
  • Throttle (Prius works well, as do others)
  • 2, 0, or 2/0 awg HV cabling
  • Various 12V wiring and relays
  • DC/DC converter (or a 12V battery with enough juice)
  • Coolant pump and radiator (stuff from early Priuses works well)
  • Precharge resistor and relay
  • One or two contactors for the HV wiring
  • Service disconnect
  • Fuse (I think it's 200-250A).
  • Charger and charge controller
  • BMS
  • Some kind of connector to mains power
  • Dilithium display or similar
  • CAN translator and bluetooth OBD for motor/inverter temps
  • Current sensor for more accurate fuel gauge
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