Sunday, October 26, 2014

More tweaking...

After bending a wheel on a huge pothole, I changed the wheels and tires out for some lighter, more efficient ones. They are ~4lbs lighter per corner, abd I've already noticed almost 10% less Ah consumed in my commute.

And, today I added a belly pan that runs 3/4 the length of the car.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Friday, July 18, 2014

It's registered!

So, the car is now registered and ready to go. Not without a few issues though...

I thought there was ~40% charge on the battery, which should have been enough to go to the DMV and back (~20 miles), however, it slowed to a crawl just a few miles from home. How embarrassing... getting towed home on my first real trip! Once home I found that 16 cells were at very low charge. It turns out, the 16 cells I got for free from work were in fact bad. I suppose they were just left too long without a charge... I had charged them up and they appeared to hold a charge, but I suppose not under significant load. So the max cells that I have will be 51, exactly what I bought. Nothing truly comes free...

The other development is that the SmartCharge 12000 PFC charger from EMotorWerks does not appear to be working. It attempts to start charging, but immediately stops saying there is a BMS stop event. The BMS stop input is bypassed so it shouldn't be triggering. In any case, I will need to take it back to EMotorWerks to test. Thankfully they are close by...

Otherwise, the short distance I did drive with it was incredible! The car was always fun to drive, but now that it is virtually silent I find it much more enjoyable. I had the Soliton1 configured with reduced motor current output and it still had plenty of power. I can't wait to get through breaking it in and really turning up the juice...

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

It runs!

I finally finished enough to drive the car. I'm only using 45 cells for now to break in...

Friday, July 4, 2014

Playing Tetris...

I think I figured out how everything is going to fit... The charger has found its home, and the motor controller will fit right beside it.

The area between the charger and controller and the firewall will be filled with a 12 cell module.

The area in front of the motor (and behind the old radiator support) will hold 2 more battery modules, one of 13 and 6 in the other.

This will bring the total to 66 cells in series for ~220V. Even at full load, and at min voltage, I should still be able to supply the full 170KW to the motor.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Rear pack done!

Wired up all the rear cells, now working on the front. The vacuum pump has found it's home as well.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

I wired up the main bus bar from the rear-most module to the front. I have some more cable on order to finish up all the wiring.

I also made one of the front battery racks.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Yay! The car's back from the shop:-) Now I can get to work...

Thursday, April 10, 2014


The motor is mounted, so the fab shop has moved on to working on the rear floorpan and battery pack...

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Thursday, March 20, 2014

No more engine!

I've also gutted the rear half of the interior to prep for the fab shop to put in a new rear floor replacing the gas tank and spare tire well with batteries.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Just got batteries!!

This is most of them... It looks like a lot, but there are 16 more! 34KW!!

Warp9 and motor adapter is ordered and on it's way too!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Here's a great post from another conversion blog that has helped me make some decisions on motor, controller and pack voltage...
Warp9 Motor Performance Predictions

Friday, February 28, 2014

Let's get started!!

This will be my attempt to document my path towards building my own electric vehicle.

I've owned my Honda since 1998 when I went looking for a red hatchback with a manual transmission. They were sold out everywhere, but I ended up finding a mint original condition 1996 DX model with low miles. 

Over the years I ended up modifying it to make it a bit more confident on the roads, then to try to get more performance from it. I ended getting the bug to auto-x race, and the Civic was the perfect choice. Everything has been modified now, from suspension to engine and interior. It was soon no longer street legal in California.

In recent years it's been difficult to compete with the likes of Mazda Miata's, Subaru WRX's and the like, and with gas prices so high, it would make a nice commuter. So, it is going to need to be a street legal vehicle again.

Putting the stock 106hp motor back in there will be a bit of a let down, and since I am now employed making battery management ICs for the major OEMs, maybe I should make my own electric car!

Here we go...

And here's the last engine it had... 203whp and 230wft/lbs! With a stock head and cam too! It sure was fun... The electric motor will need to come as close as I can afford to this.