Saturday, October 20, 2007

The new motor is here! And man, is it awesome. It's a Kostov 10.5" motor. It should provide plenty of power for my 2000 lb. Tercel! The downside of having a bigger motor is, well, it's bigger. In all respects. It's longer than my 9", making it harder to fit into a transverse mount situation. It's also heavier. Shipping weight on this thing was 230 lbs. My 9" shipped UPS at 120 lbs.! That means the new motor had to be shipped by truck. As in, big truck. I have to admit, it was cool to have a semi back up the driveway to deliver this thing.
I don't think the motor really weighs that much- if I had to guess from lifting it, I would probably say about 180. Still a significant weight increase!
I made up a pattern for the adaptor plate yesterday and took it over to the machine shop. It should be done in a few days. It's definitely a lot easier this time around, now that I have one under my belt already. I'm currently working on the design for the hub. I'll probably be able to turn it in next week. So I should have the adaptor plate ready to go in a week or two.
I've also been doing some aerodynamic mods to my truck. For starters, I covered the grill (already blocked by batteries) with a lexan plate. Should smooth out airflow a little bit.
That's about all for now. I'll probably take some more pics later and post them, plus more info on the adaptor plate. Check back soon!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

New look, new attitude!

After dropping the front a few inches and giving my truck a flat-black spray can trim job, my truck has an all-new "police cruiser" look. And it's not just to look cool, either (well, I guess the paint was...). I managed to pick up an extra 3-4 mph in third gear since the drop. Not to mention, it really does look awesome...

To go along with the whole "cool" thing, my truck also doesn't squeak anymore. Having replaced the u-joints, my truck is much more fun to drive. Plus I don't have people saying "I don't like EVs because they squeak."

And this is all just in time for my truck to tick over the magic 1000 mile mark. That's right, I now have 1000 gas-free, quiet miles on this machine. I have about 500 on it since the motor rebuild, as well. So far, that's 40 gallons of gas I didn't have to buy!

Now that I'm becoming more and more comfortable with it, I'll be driving it much more often too. It has no problems whatsoever in the rain, and cold weather doesn't seem to be much of a problem either. So that 2000 mile mark is coming up pretty quick...

I am, however, going to have to work out some sort of a heater... These 40 degree mornings are starting to get to me. I'll probably install an electric heater of some sort... I'll make sure and post about it when I figure something out.

I've also been doing a bit of work on motor cooling. Here's a pic (albeit a cryptic one) of my electric radiator fan:

So far, this has been doing an excellent job of keeping the motor cool. I've got it wired to turn on whenever the ignition is on, so even when I'm sitting at a stop light the motor is cooling down. I think that's very important. The original fan, attached to the motor shaft, only turned as fast as the motor. That meant that when I needed it most (low rpm situations) the fan wasn't doing anything! This one works much better.

The Tercel is coming right along. I'm currently working on eliminating the unnecessary engine wiring, which accounts for the majority of the underhood wiring. Should be a lot neater when I'm done. Plus I'm going to find some cool color of electrical tape to wrap it with!

The motor is scheduled to arrive later this week, so I'll be able to start working on the adaptor plate. It should be very simple. This transmission doesn't use a pilot shaft, so I don't have to incorporate the pilot bearing in the hub. This does mean, however, that I have to be extra careful with alignment.

Anyway, that's all for now. Make sure to check back soon!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

I think I can sum up this post in two words: NEW CAR! My 1992 Toyota Tercel has been warmly welcomed to the garage, and is undergoing the conversion process. This great little car weighs right around 2000 lbs.- perfect for electric conversion. It came with a 5-speed and a 1.5L EFI engine (now no longer). The car is shown below in its current (disassembled) state:

Engine, exhaust, gas tank, etc. have all been removed. At this point I'm thinking I'll run a 144v system with 12v batteries. I may upgrade later on to 156 or higher- we'll see. I want to get "zippy" performance out of this thing. I'm currently waiting for the motor to arrive. Should be an impressive motor. It's another Kostov, only a little bit bigger. It's a 10.5" dia motor, vs. the 9" Kostov in my truck. It should be able to handle the amps a little better, not to mention putting out a lot more power!

My truck is running awesome. I'm approaching 1000 EV miles. Currently the driveshaft is in the shop getting new u-joints... I finally decided it's time to get rid of that obnoxious squeaking that's been plaguing my truck ever since conversion.

I'm also playing around a little with the suspension. Turns out that it's really easy to adjust height with torsion bars! Just turn a couple bolts underneath, and you can raise and lower it to your heart's content. Fun! I've got the front lowered an inch or two right now- I'm going to remove the bumpstops today and drop it a little further. Fun to play with, albeit not very productive... Looks cool, anyhow. I'll post a pic when I'm happy with the height.

Well, that's all for now. Make sure to check back for updates. Also check my photobucket- username is greenflightev. I've got some more pics of the Tercel up there now.