Monday, August 13, 2012

Decisions, decisions.

Hello again everyone,

With it being summer, I have been enjoying a bit more time than usual to work on the car. Since my last post, the adapter plate has been finished, and several other bits and pieces have been ordered.

I got a new guibo (rubber flex disk that is bolted between driveshaft and transmission) from Bimmerworld because the old one was in need of replacement. I decided to temporarily get rid of power steering, just in the interest of getting the car driving as quickly as possible. For that, I bought a machined block of UHMW from Condor Speed Shop. Here it is installed:

And finally I put in my order for 452 A123 amp20m1hd-a cells. 432 will make it into the final pack (4 parallel cells and 108 in series)  and the order has room for duds and a 12 house battery from lithium cells. The cells should arrive within the next few weeks. Once they do, and I'm able to get a better idea of what the pack layout in the car will be, I'll go ahead and order an Orion BMS unit.

Thursday, April 26, 2012


The last few weeks have been pretty crazy with school and this project and everything else, but I've managed to get a few things taken care of. First, I bought a OEM BMW e34 spec M5 clutch disc and e36 M3 pressure plate with a lightweight aluminum flywheel made by UUC. This will replace my stock dual mass flywheel, changing the weight from 27.5lbs to 8.5 lbs. From the factory it's balanced to 11,000 RPM, which is good because my motor is capable of spinning up to 10,000 RPM.

Next, I bought a chunk of aluminum for the motor-transmission adapter plate. I oversized it, because I wanted to make sure there would be enough material, so I ended up buying a 2'x2'x0.75" chunk of solid aluminum. Last week I took it down to a machine shop near where I live with the motor, transmission, clutch and flywheel kit, and some other small components and explained what I needed done. As it turns out, some other EV enthusiasts in my area had commissioned similar work from this shop, so the guys there knew exactly how to make an adapter plate. I'm waiting for them to finish up projects they had backed up, but I'll post again when I hear from them.

Finally, I bought a charger. Since I'm pretty much set on using A123 amp20m1hd-a cells, I decided that a Manzanita Micro PFC-30 charger would be the right size for charging my car. Expect another post when it gets here.

That's all for now. It's time for me to get back to reading the user manual that came with my car.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Motor and Controller Have Arrived!

I am happy to announce that the heart and soul of my electric car have both arrived! The Rinehart Motion Systems PM100DX controller arrived on March 16th at 4:25pm, and then the Remy HVH 250-090-P motor with the AM Racing housing arrived today, March 27th at 3:50pm. 

Here you can see the adaptor that bolts on the the BMW flywheel used in the Z3.
 I'm working on tracking down an adapter plate (for mating the motor to the transmission) to speed the motor install up, rather than paying someone to build it custom. Bob Simpson over at EVdrive sells this exact motor and controller combo as a pair, and offers support for it. In his prototype/test mule car, he uses the same transmission bell housing and same motor as I'm using, so the adapter plate he had built will also fit on my car.
Arriving soon are a UUC Lightweight clutch and flywheel kit, a coolant pump, a vacuum pump (for breaks), and a DC/DC converter.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Motor, Controller... Oh, and why I've been M.I.A.

The start of a new quarter, and it's time for a long, long, long, loooooong overdue update. During fall quarter of school I completely neglected this project. I overbooked myself in terms of the course load I chose to take, and I ended up drowning in homework with absolutely no time to work on the car.

Well, with that out of the way, it's time to type about a bunch of small things that got done during these crazy past few months. A while back, a couple contactors arrived in the mail. These will be wired to the ignition as my main on/off switch. I ordered two, and the plan is to use them to break up the main power between the battery pack, motor, and controller when the car needs to be off. This will just act as a main safety system.

The motor has been ordered, and is currently being built/ re-housed by a company in Portland, Oregon. It's a REMY HVH-250-090-P AC motor that is being re-housed by AM Racing. The original motor from REMY is available, but you have to buy from them in large quantities, and it's oil cooled, which is not the best in an electric vehicle where water cooling is easier. AM Racing (AMR) takes the motor and builds a custom housing with a built-in oil pump and oil/water heat exchanger, so that the oil cooling system is self-contained, essentially creating a water cooled motor.

After countless (helpful and necessary) emails back and forth with Larry Rinehart, owner of Rinehart Motion Systems, I have finally placed an order for one of his PM100DX systems. I am waiting to hear back from him.

I'll put up more detailed information about each of these parts as I get it, and of course pics will be up as soon as I receive the components.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Engine Video Posting Problems

This is just a quick post to let you all know I haven't forgotten to post the video. I tried twice, each time took about 4 hours of letting the computer sit before displaying an error message when the video was "100% uploaded." Anyway, after that I decided to wait until after finals week to figure it out, and then get some parts on the way in the same post. I should be back to full time ev-ing by friday.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Engine is Out!!!

Hey everyone! Sorry I wasn't able to post this yesterday, we just finished today at 3am! The winch worked pretty well, aside from being about 1/2 inch too short. Once everything was disconnected and unbolted the engine and transmission just lifted out.

Now that the fuel tank, engine, and most of the other infernal combustion related parts are out, we are well on our way to an electric. From here on I should be putting more parts in than I am taking out. By the next post I hope to have a few parts on the way in the mail.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Mini Update

Hey EV guys and gals! I'm back, with a ton of excuses about why I've been gone so long, up to and including the new car I bought to match my dad's soon-to-be-ev Z3. I won't share the rest of them.
In other, more important ev news, that winch my grandfather gave me is now fully assembled and waiting to see use. Lucky for it, the engine will be coming out this Friday, tomorrow, November 26th. 

See you then!