GETTING AN EDGE IN A WAR OF STANDARDS – THE OPEN AND THE FORGOTTEN.

Pretty good week last week. Made some progress on the test bench, got Speedster Nippon inspected for the registration process, and updated the Ford Edge which appears to be running pretty well.

If you recall, we had rebuilt the Netgain 11 motor to some degree, and replaced the transmission in the Ford Edge. We also rearranged under the hood A LOT and that necessitated removal of 48 Thundersky cells and a badly constructed battery “rack”.
The SUV, Ford or otherwise, is designed as a truck. It is kind of front heavy and meant to carry loads in the BACK. Putting 48 cells under the hood was always a nightmare. I kind of see why the original builder went there as his work UNDER the vehicle was even more
bizarre. Open battery racks with exposed terminals to the weather. And under a car around here means rain and ice and snow. So we call it the Chinese electric SNOWPLOW and it will be very interesting to see how this does if we get a load.

We had added a box in the rear cargo compartment to carry 76 cells gleaned from the upgrade we did on the original Speedster. Recall these had been run to ZERO on several occasions proving our bottom balance thing. THey have been ALL that has run this 4500lb vehicle since the transmission was replaced.

That left 28 cells underneath not even CONNECTED to anything.

So this week, we charged up the rear pack and then charged up the pack underneath using our Macchina/TCCH combination. We still charge Thundersky cells to 3.6 volts and so that comes to 101v. Interesting discovery. THe TCCH charger had been reporting currents 0.1 amp below what we were requesting over the CAN bus. But on a 43 volt segment in the battery box, it actually CHARGED at precisely ONE HALF the voltage. Oddly, when we went to 101 volts, this cleared up and the charger was quite accurate in reporting and producing current.

Frustratingly, we could get NO ANSWER to this from Mandy Chou, the Chinglish sales rep from the TCCH manufacturer. We also advised her we had one of the three chargers that simply would not communicate and what did we need to do to get a replacement. She alluded to all the expenses of shipping and noted she would knock a little off our next order. We’ve been discussing an order for 20 of the chargers for THREE WEEKS and I have no invoice as yet. Now they are going on holiday for a MONTH and she assures me she will handle all that when she gets back. This is NOT a good company to deal with. Their warranty is a joke and apparently their product quality has slipped significantly as well. After a good bit of work, we finally have a charger solution, and the manufacturer is just completely flaking out on me. Most discouraging. After consulting with the engineers, she assures me she has no idea what the voltage is where this half output occurs. They are still thinking it is something to do with 120/240 after I’ve assured them we tested it both ways, and that is both ways. Failing at 43volts 120 AND 240, and doing great at 101 volts, on either 120 or 240. Of all the Chinese vendors we deal with, these guys are the WORST. Evasive, misleading, vacillating, and very poor at communications. We are likely going to revisit the offer from Brusa to handle their very expensive charger, and let this one go.

In any event, we wound up with the 28 cells underneath in series with the 76 cells in back for 104 cells and a nominal pack voltage of 347 volts.

The problem was, the car would not start. And when we checked the very early red colored Soliton 1 controller, we found an ACD OUT OF RANGE error. The book on the Soliton alluded to “something bad happening internally” with no specificity. But it also listed the top voltage as 342volts. I somehow had it at 360v, which I probably got from the NETGAIN controller and PulsaR.

So we pulled the cover off the bank in back and I reached in with my insulated socket driver to loosen the terminal. But I left a finger on the shiny part, and my other hand on the battery box rail, and got about 347 volts right across the chops. Not a little tickle like through a meter either. I got the full metal jacket version.

So we stopped and chased frame leak. Turned out to be the 3 wire cable to the iota DC-DC converter. The DC-DC converter was toast. And the cable to it was shorted. To frame ground. Yikes.

This is NOT good guys. What I SHOULD have done, before ever touching the terminals of course, was put a voltmeter from the grounded battery box to any of the terminals. Without a frame connection, this usually will indicate somewhere around zero volts. Occasionally you’ll pick up some floating voltage that dances around – 6 v to 26 volts to 9 volts to 18volts etc. You can actually watch the voltage change with the sampling of the meter. This indicates isolation from the frame. If you read 347 solid, that’s not good.

This stuff is curiously unforgiving of momentary lapses. And as we leave the 120v territory for those voltages north of 300, it becomes much more important. You need to do this check EVERY time you approach a pack. Not just when things are going well and you’re not thinking about other problems.

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We moved the positive terminal back two cells to 341 volts and the Soliton was perfectly happy and started the car immediately.

This week, we’ll reset the Manzanita Charger, which of course is installed in a place where we can’t possibly get to it to adjust it. This car is hands down the worst example of a vehicle conversion I’ve ever seen. Nothing could be worked on when we got it. It’s getting a little better, but slowly.

And that brings up a topic. We have an EXCELLENT conversion in the Spyder 550. But it suffers the same problem. IT’s really tough to work on. It is really quite a part of the design process to ASSUME you are going to have to replace everything at some point. Building a car no one can work on because you think electric vehicles do not need maintenance or because you think tucking everything in cunning unreachable places makes it look “professional” kind of misses the point. Cars wear. And parts go out. And if not you, SOMEONE is going to have to work on this thing at some point. If you failed to put together a wiring diagram, that will be harder. But if they can’t even reach the components, to the point of being unable to check the transmission fluid level, this is not good.

Surprisingly, once we got all the main work done, the car test drove quite well and even shifted passably well. So we’ll adjust the charger and add a JLD404 and see if we can get it up on its feet to let my wife drive.

We also did do some work on our test bench – largely a battery test box with 73 cells for 243 volts. This gets us above the minimum for the DMOC645 even when depleted to 3v per cell or 219 volts. It think the DMOC645 needs 210v minimum. We put cables with gland nuts on the box, a shutoff switch, a JLD404 meter so we can read current and voltage and amp hours, and a little 500watt Vicor DC-DC converter brick to make 12v. So this will serve as our DC-DC converter as well. We’ll have to reconfigure cables to drop it in half to 120v for Curtis work for example or SOlitons and Netgains.

The battery pack AND test bench are kind of important to our future. We need to test generalized vehicle control units with the DMOC645. But more immediately we are hopeful of having a completed PulsaR to test sometime in February. The main feature of this device is DC to DC charging. WE get this all the time from those wanting to use their solar power systems to charge. And it would allow a fast charge capability here locally. Our “mother lode” can act as a power source to fast charge a vehicle. The PulsaR is the key to this. Much like a pulse width modulated DC controller, it will allow us to charge to a specific voltage and then reduce current gradually to hold it there – in other words to CONTROL a flow of current up to 360v and up to 300 amps. And since it is basically a pulse width modulated SWITCH, it can do so in EITHER direction.

So we could connect a car to the box and charge the car. WE can then immediately change the configuration and use the car to charge another car or back into the box. The trick is that we do not have a boost capability. Boosting a low voltage to a higher voltage, which I very much wanted, requires an energy storage device. Most commonly an inductor. And to do 300 amps, that means a LARGE inductor. It would be fairly enormous, quite heavy, and terribly expensive. Both ChaDEmo and SAEJ1772RevB foresee high source voltages of 500v charging DOWN to cars with lower voltages.
We’re kind of stuck with the same thing. But PulsaR would allow a large battery pack, say 76kWh in an escalade, to act as a service truck for electric cars where you could charge DOWN to any car lower than 192v.

PulsaR does have some other features. A built in DC to DC converter. And a 100A AC rectifier that will allow pretty fast charging from AC if you have a 100A 240AC breaker. We kind of do. So even the Elescalade with it’s 400Ah pack could charge in 4.5 to 5 hours from AC. Of course, I’ll have to have the electric meter to my house spin balanced it will be turning so fast.

The battery pack will of course let us test motors on our bench. It doesn’t have to have a large capacity as we’ll recover 60% or so from the generator which acts as a load. Adequate too for testing the PulsaR though not at the full 360v. But as a fast charge station, the little weeny 100Ah Thundersky cells won’t really cut it. Charging down to a speedster at half the voltage (126v) it can probably do very nearly the 180 Ah. But it won’t add much to an Escalade at 208 charge voltage. In theory, there is a rail on both sides of the box allowing us to add a second layer of 100Ah cells pretty easily for 200 Ah.

One of the big topics this week was of course the JAL Boeing 787 aircraft. Two of them featured battery fires instead of a movie this month. Our FAA and NTSB immediately jumped on the batteries. But the Japanese Ministry of Transportation has had a look and they don’t think so. You’ll not likely here this here in the U.S. except of course on EVtv. But the BBC reports that the batteries have been cleared of all charges (so to speak) and the focus is on the “battery monitoring system.” We call that a BMS and came to the same conclusion from 8000 miles away without actually examining anything but photos. Photos and common sense of course. Let those with an ear to hear, hear.

Tesla has told me they have returned my deposit, though I can find no sign of it. And they’ve also announced they are reaching full production of 400 vehicles per week. So coming weeks will be telling. The SHORT INTEREST in this stock has started tip-toeing for the exits. Recently at 49% of float, they are now down to 36% and the stock is at $37 today with an earnings call on February 11. We laid in a couple hundred futures contracts on the stock this morning. Recall I predicted that as Tesla got closer, the shorts would start tiptoing out of the room. But as the price rose, and the potential losses with it, the sneaking for the exits would turn into a stampeded. I look for Elon to paint a rosy picture with plenty of orders and cranking 400 vehicles a week about the 11th day of February and probably a $45 stock price by then will start the stampede. The price will go to stupid levels in the two weeks following the announcement with the shorts panicking to cover before it reaches $100 per share. Apple will have largely missed their opportunity. I’ll be shorting myself at $100 or $110 as it will undoubtedly settle back down. But he said he was going to make it hurt and I kind of believe him.

I would also look for a general ChaDemo adapter for the Model S even here in the U.S. And we’ve pretty much picked ChaDemo at this point as the winner in the fast charging race. The SAE version is attractive – higher currents for us, and a single, if ugly, connector. But their choice of PLC as the communication standard seems to be designed to make the standard proprietary, while CHaDemo is moving toward an open standard using the much more ubiquitous CAN communications protocol. If Tesla wants to play, they are going to have to publish and make the connectors available. And I think they’ll hang on until its too late and then have to capitulate to ChaDemo’s dominance.

And I guess I DO think fast charge will be important. Largely because it enables intercity travel. It may not precisely match the convenience of petrol, but it will do a close approximation of it at some point. With both Tesla and Nissan pushing it, it’s going to happen. The question is what it will ultimately look like. I would actually prefer the Tesla model, but I’m not seeing a lot of brilliance coming out of Palo Alto these days. There are basically TWO kinds of standards in pretty much EVERYTHING, open and forgotten. I guess H.264 might comprise an exception, but if you take it’s history apart, it doesn’t quite qualify. Despite a huge technical advantage, they’ve let it be cracked pretty much without comment or legal action. Even Apple now supports BlueRay et al.

So even if Tesla DOES sell 20,000 cars this year, Nissan is likely to sell more. There are 154 ChaDemo’s now in the U.S. and about eight Tesla charging stations. If Nissan at all follows through with their now SECOND threat to install these at all Nissan dealer’s, CHaDemo wins.

I’m pretty confident we can get PulsaR to do ChaDemo CAN protocol and it may be in the cards to do a smaller less expensive device incorporating ChaDemo sans onboard charger. This concept actually opens up a long term possibility of having an expensive charger in your garage that does ALL the charging, and a little CAN bus talker and a couple of contactors in the car with NO onboard charger in teh car at all. That’s a significant weight and cost reduction to the car. But if fast charge becomes sufficiently ubiquitous it could happen.

We DID hear from Fiji Electric after this show was taped. Price on tbeir new 3 phase 62 amp 500v ChaDemo charger is $28,000. Quite a bit pricier than the $7500 Nissan is now TALKING about but not actually taking orders for. And that’s the bottom line. If Nissan wants ChaDemo, they have a clear path to winning it is a low priced EVSE and installation in all their dealer locations. All they have to do is execute. They’ve had serious execution issues and an even curiouser propensity to repeatedly snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. But if they would twice do what they SAY they are GOING to do, the standards war will be extremely brief.

Jack Rickard

80 thoughts on “GETTING AN EDGE IN A WAR OF STANDARDS – THE OPEN AND THE FORGOTTEN.”

  1. It looks like more and more things are being connected and driven by can bus.
    I went looking for a display that was can bus based and found this one.
    It’s made by FW Murphy and might be looked into by someone more familiar with these system than myself.
    My Sevcon Gen4 controllers run can bus, the chademo, pulsar, curtis, etc.
    I don’t know how all these different can bus systems can be intermingled but it looks like the way forward.

    Here’s the PV450 model can bus driven display link:

    http://www.fwmurphy.com/pv450/

    1. I have used the IFM hardware extensively in the work I do. I am familiar with the FW murphy stuff too. FW murphy is a bit less configurable, more expensive, and generally really designed to display engine data only.

      If you’re looking for a small affordable display try this IFM unit:
      http://www.ifm.com/ifmus/web/padv/080_010_010_060_010_020.html
      It’s not touch screen so the screen won’t get worn out by pressing it and won’t get fingerprinted. It has 1 CAN port that supports Canopen, or J1939 natively but also supports CAN2.0 layer 2 so you can program any CAN data you want, 11 or 29 bit, etc. The IDE is also OPEN, as in you don’t have to pay for it. It supports ladder, block, Sequential Function Charts, structured text (C like) and other languages all running simultaneously.

      IFM also has basic controllers designed for the automotive environment, with 2 can ports:
      http://www.ifm.com/products/us/ds/CR0403.htm

      The only possible Catch that Jack will complain about is that you need a USB to CAN converter to interface to and program them. Luckily though you can use many different types and not buy one from that particular supplier.

      There are thousands of these in the field so the hardware can be assured it’s automotive hardened, which can’t be said for a aurduino….
      Brian

    2. Don:

      You guys do this to me CONSTANTLY. References to archaic manufacturers of hugely overpriced devices distributed through a protected distributor network. No pricing. No link to purchase one. What do you imagine this entails? I contact the manufacturer, “for a quote” and instead of a quote, I get a hand off to a dinosaur age protected distributor. This guy doesn’t actually want to GIVE me a price because there IS no price. What there is is a trully STUPID game of 20 questions about my “application” designed to gage to the uttermost farthing how much he thinks I can pay.

      There is an entire ecosystem of these devices sold in just this way. They all have one thing in common, a price about 10x what the device is worth or can otherwise be obtained. That’s what is necessary to hold this “distributor network” in the air in an act of gravity defiance in the hope that sufficient suckers will lack sufficient knowledge to actually form a market at that ridiculous price.

      I ordered a torque sensor from just such a company 11 WEEKS AGO. They simply could not take yes for an answer even at an absolutely ridiculous price of nearly $8000. They e-mailed. They called. We have all been in agreement for 3 months. I finally told them to forget it. Incapable of entering an order.

      This is 2000 and fucking TWELVE. If you cannot do business like Amazon.com, you are the walking dead. ANd ever hoping for a few lagard morons to fund continued existence is a very poor strategy.

      I get 25 e-mails per day pointing me to devices that do not exist in real time, or are distributed by these abusive marketeers who give no thought to the time and effort they put people through to learn the very BASICS about their products – price and availability.

      The Chinese have picked up on this. I recently did an experiment on Alibaba simply requesting PRICE on 10 varied products. Guess how many of these I actually GOT a price on the first contact? ZERO. Alibaba now actually has a SCHOOL for Chinese companies teaching them how to sell like an American to an American market.

      Truly thanks for the pointer. I appreciate it. But I am going to have to give up chasing this shit. It just takes up too much time. If you want to contribute a product recommendation, please in the future provide a link where it can be PURCHASED and pricing information. If you haven’t taken it that far, why send it to me to research? And what do you actually know about it?

      Jack Rickard

      1. Well… Jack maybe this is something for you ?

        The transducer you are looking for is right up my ally 🙂

        I called the company in Denmark and it is no problem to deliver.

        If you want, you can get a transducer with following data :
        Power supply = 11.5 – 30 VDC Not included
        Precision = or les 0,5% of full scale
        Max Rpm = 10000
        Max Talk = 1000 Nm
        Out = 0 + – 5V DC
        Out = 10 + – 8 mA
        Rpm signal out = 62 Pulses/1 Rpm

        Corde 2M or 5M

        Input Shaft and output shaft = 40.00 mm L = 26 mm

        size = L 120mm B Ø = 105mm H = 97,5 mm

        Price 2400 $
        Delivering time 6 weeks maybe faster.

        Allan

  2. Regarding the Mitsubishi: I was test-driving an e-smart the other week at our local smart dealer. Was a nice drive, nice pull. Appears to be something like a direct drive (no gears) and offers some nice features you can control/monitor with an iPhone. Price would be in a tolerable range (approx. 15k USD higher than a “normal” one). Appears to be a perfect and clean city-hopper. The only disadvantage is when you want to buy one, you’ll have to wait about… well, just one year. Where did we hear that again ?

  3. RE Battery performance at 45 v 25 degrees:
    It would not be unimaginable, or even unprecedented, to have manufacturers conspire to move more consumables. Think a disposable razor manufacturer would publish internal documents showing how to double the functional use its product by dipping the [attitude control] moisturizing bar in acetone of whatever? Watch this documentary [click on the green circle and enable the English subtitles before hitting the play button]

    http://www.universalsubtitles.org/en/videos/riRz3SO0wj1Q/info/fabricados-para-no-durar-comprar-tirar-comprar-sub/

    I watch on EVTV youtube [so as not to tap you $0.65] and in the comments section someone mentioned putting your 245V battery pack on a trailer as a range extender. This sounds like a keen idea. A battery range extender which could be rented from UHAUL or owned at home seems like a bridge to the egg-yolk and beyond battery advances and wide-spread fast charging.

    1. What kind of batteries are being used in the Boeing 787 Jack? What is their chemistry, voltage and AH? Are they using LiFePO4s? If so, considering a 3000 cycle-life, at what point in time (cycles) are they being retired from airplanes? Last friday I took and airplane and at the end of the flight I asked the Captain if they use Lithium batteries in the craft, because I’d like to reuse those in my cars. His answer: no lithiums. Regards from Yucatan, Mexico. The land of the Mayan’s Sixth Sun have to be EVLAND world wide!

      1. As I said in the show Hector, they use a Nickel LIthium Cobalt Oxide Aluminum hybrid cathode. This is VERY similar to the Panasonic chemistry used in the TEsla Model S.

        Devices designed for aircraft are typically six times the going rate in the non-aviation market. This is because they have to be vetted by the FAA and they require UNENDING engineering and safety test data. And the Boeing 787 incident is precisely why.

        Jack

        1. I’ve been following up this 787 business and who is to blame and I’ve come across something that might be interesting…. Providing I’m not wrong.
          The Yuasa battery company does not make the BMS. According to the NTSB & quoting the Chicago Tribune, they said:
          “Other investigators were looking at data from the digital flight data recorders on the aircraft for any further clues about battery performance and operation of the charging system, which was built by Securaplane, a unit of Britain’s Meggitt Plc.”..

          I looked up The firm, “Securaplane” who it seems makes the BMS and sure enough the battery packs are on view… One big problem and I quote from their website;
          “The Securaplane battery uses lithium iron phosphate chemistry, which is inherently safer than other Lithium chemistries and more tolerant to excessive ambient temperature, voltage surge and shock/crush conditions.”

          Could it be someone has altered the batteries for the 787 pack which might have caused this issue?
          Can’t be, surely! This would totally invalidate any airworthiness certificate for the battery pack.
          Must add, Securaplane advertise the fact they make the battery for a couple of ‘planes but no mention of the 787.

          Sources:
          http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-01-29/business/chi-ntsb-takes-microscopic-look-at-burnt-787-battery-20130129_1_britain-s-meggitt-plc-lithium-ion-gs-yuasa
          http://www.securaplane.com/products/energy-storage-technologies

        2. Extra extra! Today February 1st Seth Leitman released the 3rd edition of his book “Build Your Own Electric Vehicle”, available only for the Amazon’s Kindle Reader for the moment. I purchased it and I went straight into Batteries… to find a SHORT interview with you Jack! That was the very first book on EVs I ever read… last year (2nd Edition). Please comment on this book and especially talk a bit more about that interview in your show dear Jack. Regards from Mexico City.

          1. Hector,

            As you scan through the Kindle 3rd edition, how much is actually updated from your print 2nd edition?

            Thanks,

            Ed

  4. In the UK most of the EVs that we have use no variable transmission of any kind. Citroen made Berlingo vans (Slightly smaller than the connect) from 1996 to 2004, and sold something like 5000 of them, I still own a couple and have 3 for spares. These all use electric Vacuum pumps, and rarely go wrong and dont run out of vacuum reserves. It may be that your pump on the fusion is too small. Areservoir can help, a small CO2 fire extinguisher bottle or even an alloy water bottle, make decent reservoirs. Even the Miles you had uses an electric vacuumpump. I am used to vehicles with loads of regen, our roads just arnt long and un interrupted as to have a great deal of use for coasting. But with good regen the brakes are also rarely used. This does mean that in our damp climate the front discs on the berlingos rot badly, but pads never wear out.
    I upped the regen on a Miles I had to sort out and it makes a much nicer drive. That had a problem with the brake pressure switch regen, which kept calling an error on the curtis as over voltage. Even a change of transducer didnt solve it. So I used a voltage regulator to ensure the feed meant it could never over volt. The Miles also has a constantly on DC to DC convertor and subsequently chewed through them at an anoying rate. I now supply a small device that controls the DC to DC when the car is shut down, and turns on the DC to DC for two hours when it measures a voltage of 12.2v. Result it doesnt rob the Pack if left for a few days and doesnt get a flat 12v battery, if the DC to DC only comes on when the Curtis is turned on. It also doesnt leave the DC to DC on for a long time so reducing the likelyhood of any unattended burn down of the DC to DC.
    I look forward to seeing the fusion with a siemens and Borgwarner transmission. That will make a nice car.

  5. Jack: The January 25 video comments about the Mitsubishi MiEV perked up my interest. First when you stated that someone was doing a 24 month lease for $69.00 or $89.00 I felt foolish because I had just leased a MiEV for $125.00 for 24 months. Then when you said the cheaper leases didn’t actually exist I felt smarter and then elated when you said that anything under $200.00 a month would be a winner. Daytona Mitsubishi in Daytona Beach, Florida is leasing MiEVs for $125.00 per month for 24 months. They claim to have leased 13 cars so far in January and have 28 more cars coming soon. My lease called for an initial payment of $1300.00 and $125.00 per month for 24 months. Thereafter, I could buy the car for about $22,000.00 or simply turn in back to the dealer. The car is terrific for the inter city driving I do. If it continues to operated as it is now I feel I have a winner.

    Bob Gilpatrick
    South Daytona, Florida

    1. Bob:

      I think you did just fine. There are so many games you can play with leases that the idea of comparing them becomes absurd. The $69 lease always DID include nearly $3000 of stuff up front, a limitation of 12,000 miles per year, etc. At $169 it was no money up front. They can move these numbers around at will including the tax and licensing. It is just a jello python to wrestle to the ground.

      As far as I’m concerned, with a $1300 down and $125 per month you stole it. You get to drive the vehicle for two years gasoline free and learn a lot about living with an electric car. At the end of two years, it is somebody elses problem. You don’t care about the long term cycle life of the batteries, the resale value, or anything else.

      I would predict that the resale price (no one is going to want to hear this) on OEM electric cars will be HALF what it is for ICE cars. And at the end of the two year lease, if you will give the car back, you can go back to the dealer the next day and buy your car for $6000. Alternatively, they will gladly accept the $22,000 buyout. They’ll be happy both ways. Happier the second way of course.

      I think if OEM’s want to move to electric cars, and I strongly think they both SHOULD and that it will be VERY good for them long term, the discount lease is precisely the way to acculturate the maximum number of people to the maximum number of cars. If they build good cars, they will win long term. And long term, they will find
      the costs of producing such cars MUCH decreased. They are simply simpler devices without the oversized cooling systems, fuel vapor systems, exhaust systems, etc. It moves to very easy to deal with electronics and a couple of trivially easy to install power components. But like Nissan, they are going to have to make their OWN motors and their OWN controllers and their OWN battery modules. All of these are EASIER to mass produce than gasoline engines or even fuel tanks. The fuel tank on our Mini Cooper had 17 different connections. Liquid, vapor, and electrical. It was a marvel. It must have cost a fortune to design, an fortune to build, and a third full afternoon to INSTALL. It had more connections than my whole CAR in electric.

      So I see the discount lease as the path to numbers AND a very differently educated buyer. After living with the i-Miev for two years, you are going to be looking for a very different set of characteristics in your next electric and range and recharge time aren’t going to be any of them. Bluetooth, heat and air conditioning WILL.
      Better instrumentation might. Connectivity might. Safety perhaps. More seating perhaps. Post i-Miev, I would guess quality and fit and finish perhaps.

      But I would predict you quickly get ok with range. You quickly learn that it charges best while you’re sleeping and you’re not to concerned about what time OH DARK THIRTY it “completed”. And since you’re leasing, you’re not too concerned about battery life.

      I actually was going to LEASE one of these and I have some pretty nice electric cars here already. But at $69.

      Part of my love of electric cars is where I live. It’s an island community 4.5 miles square. We just don’t commute. I have to be TESTING a car to get out over 20 miles per day. ALl the car companies are focused on California and New York. There are thousands of these little island communities all over the midwest where range just is NOT the issue in reality. Our mufflers rot out in four years because we never get the car hot enough to burn out the humidity in the exhaust system. We wear out SLI batteries in a year because the car doesn’t run long enough after starting to recharge them. And we burn a LOT more fuel running up and down the road start stop for two miles. Accelerating and decelerating. My Escalade got less than 10 miles per gallon in town. No car EVER gets EPA ratings here. not for City.. Not for anything.

      1. I hope I do not make a fool out of myself.

        We do own our i-MiEV for 6 month now and have sold our ICE for good. Too expensive, insurance and maintainance, and renting a car for a day is a lot cheaper and safer. Plus you will get an almost new car in the first place.

        We have gone long distance several times, 250 km or 150 miles, charging at trailer parks and malls and private sponsored power sockets. Public charging turned out to be useless. You have to have an RFID card that works in one place only and you have to buy an adapter cable that is useless anywhere else and costs some 700 dollars / euros. It is not fun to spend a night in the cold while charging on the way home again and the malls are usually closed at night.

        Just as german vacuum cleaners with “Schuko” plugs wont run in france, german cars with Mennekes plugs wont charge in france with Marechal sockets. At least both of them wont run anywhere else in the world and that is not really a problem because there are no german cars in the first place. After all it took them 3 years researching for a socket and plug that would be useless for everybody except germans and russians. Who needs a charger with 3 phases each of them 16A when you can get 200A single phase elsewhere?

        So we bought an i-MiEV and we are looking forward to enjoy the french CHAdeMO network.

        We are living in the country not in the city and we usually need to go some 60 kilometers, 35 miles or more. We can do that even in winter.

        Oh, the pump!

        I have been driving our i-MiEV downhill without pump and power stearing – not by intention. Unlike an ICE you cannot simply turn the key to connect the battery pack. So I am not afraid to jump onto the breaks with two feet if need be.

        Most important – I never charge while sleeping. After all the i-MiEV has got a BMS. I know what I have been driving and what the gauge says looks reasonable. From the gauge I know how long charging will take and I usually check at least once every hour. After
        charging I always do unplug promply and most of the time I unplug before it is filled to the rim.

        I am looking forward to converting our car although it is already electric. Even if Mitsu does not like that – it is tricky after all to drop that battery pack to the floor to get at the hidden spiderweb inside and I’ll need your macchina to hack into it and later to spoof it.

        Apropos hacking. The arduino is still new to me. It feels a bit like I’d prefer to hack it in assembly language. I remember those days when somebody programmed a robot in Microsoft Basic. The vdu said “garbadge collection. Please wait …” and the robot went out through the wall. The machine was running CP/M 3.0 . They should never have allowed MSDOS in the first place but that is history.

        Another apropos, how is your DC3? When they through out the bms those cells will fly. How about a conversion?

  6. Jack:
    I gotta tell ‘ya the idea of DC charging off-board appeals to me greatly. I’ve never gotten by Nissan including an expensively engineered charger in my Leaf and charging me with the need to pay $700-$2000 for a commercial AC safety interlock (EVSE). In fact I built my own 30 amp EVSE for less than $300. I see on-board chargers as just an unnecessary failure point and more overhead in building the car. “Ain’t This America.”

    That’s also $300 I could have used toward a DC charger and I don’t like carrying a piece of equipment in the car that you never use unless you are parked. I think it must be the track driver in me that’s speaking and I keep hearing Colin Chapman saying, “Build in Lightness.”

    I would not be surprised that down the line of all this EV development and newness, it will dawn once again on others to “charge outside the box,” especially when batteries are at energy density levels three or more times higher than today and chargers become larger. Seems to me all you need is a three wire cable, a connector(ChadeMo of course) and a DC charger with a little bit of electronic logic. One could use a small DC charger for overnight home charging and fast chargers for the occasional vacation trip. Heck, you could even remove the Leaf charger and hang it on the wall and use it. Well, what do I know, I just read about this stuff on EVTV and repeat it so people think I’m smart.
    Ladson

    1. Yet another reason for off board chargers:

      We see a digital bog replacing our 50 Hz sinewave grid in germany. Computers and not so energy conserving lamps are the main culprits but an electric car behaves like one and a half households and can easily outsync the grid locally.

      It is easy to filter, just a lump of iron and a bag of copper building a nice coil almost the size and weight of your car. It makes sense after all the ICE cars getting bigger and bigger because they all are carrying their pump and hose arround. May be that is the reason why they are smelling like a gas station.

      Electricity price is exploding in europe, in germany at least. More than 1/3 euro per kWh. Imagine 35 cents per kilowatt hour.

      Your own solar cells are cheaper and with Jack’s external drive train car you can store the energy. It is DC not AC not 3 phase. Who is not connected to a grid today probably never will be. Solar is DC. Windmills could produce more energy if the were not hobbled to turn in lockstep by a power grid. The long hose running from Quebec down to Florida transporting power from the Baie de la James is 2 wires DC. Imagine 4 wires and 3 phase turning might turn our planet in reverse 🙂

      After all the ISS is 120V DC or she would turn in the wrong direction.

      The only way to store AC is a big fly wheel and I would not like to have one in my house near my bed at least. So DC is the future for sure and it is already closer than electric cars but electric cars will make the reasonable next step.

      Yet another reason is the Carrington Event. We dont know when the next big one will come but we have seen several smaller ones. It is as unlikely as Fukushima. It will turn the grid into e mess like that BMS did the batteries of that infamous Boing.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_storm_of_1859

      There is a nice pic of the week showing our sun this week

      http://sohowww.estec.esa.nl/pickoftheweek/

      If this one had hit us … activity on the sun is dangerously low and it will drop for some 60 years to come. It is those Maunder Minimum times that sudden and unexpected activity will strike. That is what other G stars suggest. 4/5 of their time (about 280 years for our sun) they are active with lots of sunspots and 1/5 (some 70 years our sun) they are sleeping or breeding something. That cycle repeats. But because of the global warmers religion that is forbidden knowledge. After all it suggests a minor ice age comming (only some 2 degrees drop in temperature, nothing serious) and during all ice ages you could travel to the north pole in a boat. There was no ice bergs. I am told both the east and the west passage are opening.

      Still it is no reason to spoil our planet with CO2 and other poisons. So keep on converting cars and if you can get off the grid.

      1. Fortunately the rest of europe has not adopted a No Nuclear stance as Germany has. That is why the cost of German energy has gone up so much. The shortfall is now being made up by using Brown Lignite, the worst type of coal, Imported Nuclear power from France,and a Final top up from a Crude oil station in Austria. Germany has great aims to be pure renewable powered by 2050, but will be pumping out huge CO2 and pollution for the next 20 years while they have to play catch up. Politics have dropped Nuclear but not considered the impact for the rest of europe of their actions. In the UK we have a massive Pumped storage suystem that is used to meet peak demands, originally used to take excess Nuclear power and pump water for subsequent Hydro power generation . Its based in a welsh mountain. Dinorwig is its name.
        Using cars as a peak storage system is a great idea, unless you need to use your car when the grid has taken your power. Its also a bit tough that your cells could be being cycled a lot and their life being reduced, with out you ever using your car.
        The UK land owners hate Wind farms, Its not at all British, the countryside should never change!!! But they still use kettles and TVs and turn on lights, but just refuse to admit that they are also part of the problem. Much of UK wind isnow having to be put up off shore. Good for local communities who are supporting the companies. Now we are trying to build a Wind farm in Ireland, We cant see it from there so its OK. At least Germany just puts it windmills on their borders so France, Holland etc can get the view as well.
        In Canada a lot of Native people who have taken over land rights are setting up huge Wind farms, there is a massive wind Ranch east of pincher creek east of the Rockies, just above the US border. Its a wonderful sight in an area of high wind . These things can make a difference, but the users of the countryside need to wise up and be part fo the solution not sit back and be partfof the problem.

      2. Peter, if you can prove to me C02 is a poison to life, I will listen. 🙂 That is one molecule we are in dire shortage of.
        O2 is not natural and I openly challenge any Carbonazi to live in a domed lentil growing farm with C02 continually scrubbed out. >:-)
        True, will we not see a massive Solar storm again in our lifetimes and an ice will be upon us. Solar cycles are affected tidally from planets but there is a larger cycle some say recharges our star as it wanders into the galactic arms.
        The North passages have been open quite a few times during this last century but the view of the insurers is still too big a risk as a seasonal commercial enterprise.

        http://www.leif.org/research/Solar-Polar-Fields-1966-now.png
        http://www.leif.org/research/WSO-Polar-Fields-since-2003.png
        http://www.leif.org/research/Active%20Region%20Count.png
        And of course, a plant C02/growth database:-
        http://www.co2science.org/data/plant_growth/plantgrowth.php

  7. I’ve been looking at this charging subject a little different. I’m a great believer in keeping things simple. The question is, why is it be don’t adapt the batteries towards the source we are charging from.
    We know that a lithium battery can only take on a charge if the voltage is X amount higher, which determines the amperage. So the question is, if you rectify a given ac voltage, how many batteries would it take to match the rectified amperage input that would be acceptable for charging, and then be cut off when X amount of voltage is achieved.

    Its kind of like when we put gasoline in to our cars, we don’t usually let it go to empty, and when we fill it, we don’t try getting all the way up to the neck. But the input to the tank is usually a reasonably fast flow.

    Roy

    1. Roy,
      I think for your own fast charge system a simple system could be made but for like a public station you need to be able to handle fast charging for a multitude of voltages that you will find on different systems. And a way to communicate to them all. Jack would like as he said to be able to use boost which requires a fairly healthy inductor to boost the voltages to the value of a specific pack. My controller does just that. I can use a large bank of DC batteries and then boost that with an inductor to the voltage I set in my controller so I can charge the pack quickly. I have had my system charging at 150 amps into the pack at one point. The controller also charges with a CC/CV algorithm. But for a large public system it would require a very very large DC bank of cells and a very large inductor that would need cooling. That is my direction for DC setups. Not sure about the AC side of things at this time.

      It is actually quite simple. I now need to work in the J1772 plug that can do at least 70 amps. For off grid folks a nice home setup from a bank of batteries is a good idea. That way you charge the bank with solar or wind or hydro or all of the above and then charge from that bank at any time you choose.

      Pete 🙂

      1. The smallest CHAdeMO I know off are these (sorry german language)

        http://www.e8energy.de/produkte/strom_ladestationen/49,ladestation_@fast.html

        http://www.e8energy.de/produkte/strom_ladestationen/80,ladestation_@fix.html

        They are running from 3 phase (230V) reading 400V / 32A that is only 20kW but it is the biggest red socket you can get for your home without paperwork and a discussion in parliament in europe at least. I know they are working with “frozen sinewaves” as well: Feed L1 with -325V DC, feed L2 with +325V DC and dont touch L3. That looks like 650V DC and is the same as 50 peaces of 12V battery fed from a solar array. Apropos 230V arith is 325V eff. That is what you get pushing 230V AC through a bridge rectifier and adding a battery or a capacitor at the DC end. Ever wondered why the i-MiEV is running from 330V DC?

        Put the “J1772” hardware aside and add a little CANbus. That is what CHAdeMO is. You actually get the two ends of the battery to play with and CHAdeMO lets charger and battery talk in CANbus language to decide what to do.

        I have not yet dared to tried a “frozen sinewave” on our i-MiEV. I am sure the 12V power supply in the Panasonic EVSE would not like it but – hey, I want to charge without EVSE in the first place. Haven’t I heard talking about DC charging using that very same J1772 things including the socket in the car?

  8. Hi Jack,
    Do you think that we will get to a stage where there are enough second hand Leafs etc, that we might see a small number of conversions that harvest a complete drive train from a fully functional vehicle to install in a car of their choice?

      1. The car I drive is 16 years old. I am constantly replacing worn parts. Do you see a large industry for replacement controllers etcetera? What parts unique to an electric drive train do you envisage may need replacing most? For guys like evnetics, Curtis and even you, I see a potential market. But a slow to develop one that will rely on accumulation of old EVs.

        1. I see the bulk of it being a large expansion in the number of people doing conversions as it gets more plug and play and more familiar.

          For the existing EVs, I look at the sorry lead acid ladies on eBay. This is not a bad way to get your feet wet first time. But the components have come a long way. They still WORK in these older cars. But nobody wants them. There are just much better chargers and controllers and so forth available.

          And so I see the replacement as not so much an industry of repairs, but of upgrades. You will probably upgrade your controller sooner from desire than waiting for it to blow up. There will be better ones with more features and power in smaller packages with liquid cooling. Yes, the old pickup runs on a Curtis 1231C and ADC8. Runs a lot better with a Curtis 1238 and AC-75. Same with batteries. Same with chargers.

          If it’s a good car, it will be upgraded. If it’s a trainwreck, probably better do a different conversion.

          Jack Rickard

  9. Hi Jack, is it possible to add a glossary to the site? I Googled PulsaR and was not rewarded with anything helpful to your post. Maybe hyperlink jargon until we get used to the termonology?

    Thanks,
    Carl

    1. It’s possible to add a glossary AND write a book. What’s not possible is for me to find time to do either.

      PulsaR is a charge device we spec’d and is being built by Ryan Bohm of Netgain Controls and EVSource. We anxioiusly await the first prototype. It will do DC-DC charging at up to 360v and 300 amps and works very much like a PWM controller. It can charge in either direction. It also includes a 100 amp AC rectifier to charge from AC and a DC-DC converter to provide 12v at about 300 watts I think. It will be entirely configurable.

      But we don’t have one yet.

      Jack Rickard

  10. I saw someone else commented on the torque vs rpm control. Torque requests without a load would likely runaway, so your guest videos were probably the safer way to apply commands. You’ve often stated that throttling a motor with the clutch disengaged was a problem. So either a rev limiter or an rpm request seems practical.

    1. Carl:

      “Torque requests with a load would likely runaway.”

      Where do you get your data for this statement? I’ve heard it about six times in teh last week.

      Our Rhinehart controller runs in torque mode. Our Curtis 1238’s have all been operated in torque mode. We blip the motors up to 4000 rpm or so in neutral routinely with no ill effects whatsoever. In any event, I mentioned this to Collin and Ed and they tried the torque mode and it works a peach, without the noise and with no “runaway”. So I ask you, when offering this sage advice, whereby do you come by this knowledge?????

      Or is this just another one of those things that “make sense” to you while typing?????

      Jack Rickard

    1. Apropos SAE,

      German automakers Daimler and Audi left SAE in a quarrel about fire hazard caused by refrigerator liquid HFC-1234yf that is to replace the popular R134a. In an accident a leak in the cooling system might result in a fire with fluoric acid threattening the life of rescuers.

      http://www.spiegel.de/auto/aktuell/kaeltemittel-streit-daimler-und-audi-verlassen-expertengruppe-a-881848.html

      Sorry for the german link. I guess it will be in english speaking media soon.

      HFC-1234yf has the potential to become for auto industry what Lithium Cobalt is for Boing.

      Of coarse I checked what is in our family i-MiEV: R134a

  11. Jack,
    Why don’t AC inverters/motor controllers that support regen braking double as on-board chargers? I don’t pretend to be an electrical engineer, but isn’t regen braking (motor outputting AC, inverter converts to DC to charge batteries) the same thing as charging except for the source of the AC? Is it an efficiency problem? Just curious, seems like it should be one less component.

    1. From what I’ve gathered having talked to some people who make controllers:

      Primarily the reason is liability and added testing expense. It takes time to test your controller as a charger and not just a motor controller. It is also an added liability (on top of the liability already faced by a motor controller designer) to make things which attach to mains power. In some markets you are required to do extensive testing in order to get permission to hook up to AC. In the US being UL listed is optional but if you don’t do it it looks bad if someone sues you for burning their house down. Also, mains AC power is much dirtier than the voltage you’d get back from regen on a motor. You know what the motor is likely to do. AC building power might have DC riding on the line, someone might start up or turn off a large load suddenly, lightning could strike, etc.This just adds to testing expense and also probably adds to component cost because now you have to try to protect against harsh transients on the AC lines. And, lastly, adding the feature won’t probably be used by most people and likely won’t allow you to add much to the price. People can be weird that way. They see a $4000 motor controller and will buy it but add $1000 for testing and added components for using it as a charger as well and people will instead buy a $2500 dedicated charger.

      So, short answer, it’s not worth it to them. But, I also think it would be a very neat thing to have

      1. The AC Propulsion drive and probably the Tesla drive (since it is derived from the ACP drive) do use the drive motor as part of the charger. They call it reductive charging where the motor coils are used as an inductor to regulate the power into the batteries. Requires absolute isolation of the traction drive components from the car chassis. The advantage is you don’t have to add additional weight to get a 20Kw charger.

        1. Thanks for the info guys. As a software guy I don’t think about “dirty” AC or isolating circuits, we live in ivory towers made of perfectly reliable bits 🙂
          I do foresee all these components reaching a logical conclusion of 2 boxes. A low voltage box that deals with inputs (throttle, braking, etc) that talks to a high voltage box (charging, inverter, etc) over CAN bus. Its neat to see this all starting to come together like that.

    1. Sounds like a serious case of wheel-reinvention. Next thing there will be a rule that all public charge stations in all EU countries must use this, thus creating an immediate inconvenience for owners of J1772 cars (like me).

    2. Europe no, only Germany has Mennekes. In most countries in Europe they have Schneider Marechal mandatory because with Mennekes you could touch a life wire.

      With cars it is different. I have only seen electric cars with CEE plugs, made in Europe by very small companies or from Japan with CHAdeMO and the original J1772.

      In Germany the are promising a lot. Most points where you can charge are non profit either free or park & charge or look for a caravan parking. They have CEE 230V/16A. Park & charge is CEE 400V/32A or CEE 400V/16A that is 3 phase and CEE 230V/16A normal AC. Very often it is the local french or german or swiss plug.

      http://www.park-charge.ch/e/index.htm

      Only France is politically interested in spreading public charging that is why we do have Schneider Marechal in the first place but mostly in France. Really interesting is most CHAdeMO chargers in Europe are actually in France.

      France and Germany are doing their best to kill public slow charging in Europe and clandestinely France is flooding highways with CHAdeMO. French petrol distributers are already invading german hiways but very slowly.

      The big trouble with Mennekes is they offered me an adapter cable for 700 euros (dollars). That is 700 for a cable you can use almost nowhere. The CEE plugs you can get for some 5 euros. Only power producer RWE is the driving force behind the Mennekes. You have to have the cable plus an RFID card to use their charge points. That is some 703 Euros plus 60 Euros per year plus electricity and they are the most expensive. Their charge points very often dont work or even lock your cable but cannot unlock it because of computer problems. It is safe to not use them.

      Info about Schneider:

      http://www.schneider-electric.com/products/ww/en/1800-evlink-charging-solutions-for-electric-vehicles/

      Their quick charger is CHAdeMO.

      Big pictures, slow download, this is what charging in Germany looks like – but hey, I can fry my ham end eggs with 400V 3 phase turning. That is why I do not have to turn the pan handle myself 🙂

      http://www.piraten-fraktion-bergstrasse.de/AETC/GorillaCharging.html

      I have played with AEB bracketing and HDR to look into the shadows but if something is moving between the 3 exposures that gives peculiar results.

      1. Peter,
        Mennekes have sensor and control pins so how can you touch a live wire?
        Photo:
        http://www.mennekes.co.uk/uploads/RTEmagicC_MENNEKES_Steckerschema.jpg.jpg
        .
        http://www.zerocarbonworld.org/shop 32A, Price: £199 excluding VAT and P&P (£252 inclusive of both, UK only). The guys of this site are Tesla owners and state openly Mennekes owns the future. Note the video; its not so useless. AC in; using the Leaf’s inverter via regen?
        .
        Maybe we all know the plain old IP44 rated CEE 230V/16A (32A in many places) are still the dogs clackers because they are everywhere from camping, building sites, factories, external use, generators you name it they are basically the international universal standard on our side of the pond. They will never go away. No Tesla could tour the USA without such a socket.
        .
        Here is a state of play with connections. Many non-free. Choose the country, refine the search to check out connector types. The numbers available of each type are easily read off. (Excludes campsites etc.) http://openchargemap.org/
        .
        Sony did not allow the world free access to build their betamax. It died. Now thinking Chademo; playing stupid on their hands and knees, rolling a turd up a steep hill with their noses to impress the manufacturers. They may be “well connected” but isn’t it time they grew up?

        1. I do not know how the french did it. I guess they “accidently” connected a diode and a resitor. Then they glued the shutter of the Marechal shut and said now try this with a marechal.

          Interestingly enough they produced a map of europe showing most parts of europe would only allow shutter protected Marechals and not Mennekes. I have seen that as the answer to a Mennekes press statement that some people took as an eu statement.

          French charge points with Marechals are existing and spreading. I am sure they wont replace them. The french CHAdeMO chargers do have a Marechal socket for slow charging.

          The german CHAdeMO I have seen has a Mennekes socket for slow charging. The charge points some local power producers “Stadtwerke” use is Mennekes plus Schuko. So you have another choice mostly. Only RWE insists on Mennekes but the RWE charge points sponsored by ADAC a german motor club do have an adapter cable from Mennekes to Schuko they’ll lend you for charging and they’ll phone RWE to activate the charge point for you.

          I am using http://www.lemnet.org/LEMnet_Map.asp mostly and I have helped getting some unknown charge points in my county into their database. But since end of last year they are moving to a bigger computer and that is not finished yet. Disappointed me a bit. They were down when I needed them mostly.

          I have seen depending on the country http://openchargemap.org/ might be a better choice.

          Another good choice was the directory of camping and caravan lots that your local motor club (ADAC) sells. That is why I immediately changed my Panasonic EVSE from Schuko to CEE 230V/16A the blue one. I was glad I did. The Schuko had already a smoldered brown ring around one of the pins. 16A is too much for Schukos over any length of time. That is why they sell only 10A EVSE for new cars.

          So with Park & Charge mostly and Caravan lots if need be I could go wherever I wanted. Once I even connected to a CEE 400V/32A at a city hall during a party convention parking between Döner and Pizza. Each of us got CEE 400V/32A. Since that time a lot of people think the i-MiEV can charge 3 phase 🙂

  12. Hi Jack very impressed with you initial work on CHAdeMO. I hope you unlock the key. I wonder if it would be possible to add an DC to AC converter so a Tesla Chan charge at a full 70 amps. That is a converter box I would be willing to buy as the 6 kw public charging is frustrating at best.

  13. Hi Jack

    I not sure how to write this, but here it goes:

    Can you give us a clue about when there might be a new show online? And / or a new blog post?

    This is not to push you, I just really enjoy the show and the blog posts. 🙂

    Thanks for all the work that you do!
    Carsten

    1. Sounds like EVTV.me might need to install a live webcam. Just point it at the lift in the center of the shop so that folks can just look at whats going on and not fret over missing Friday episodes and blog entries.

        1. Don’t worry about it. I was joking. Your post was fine. There was a guy a year or two ago who would come on here and demand a video by Sunday morning like it was his god given right to watch the Friday Show on Sunday with his family. It would completely throw off his entire week if the show did not air sometime on Monday.

          1. So long as everyone is happy, healthy and not fretting their hair out after practising 2.5 hours of a non-filming. Any news Jack?
            .
            Reporting to a handy web cam might be a good idea Mr. Palmer! I’m all ears and eyes for any contributors. Something I’d love to do myself when things settle down here 🙁

          2. Well guys, I kinda miss it too. I usually tune in at the office on Monday morning and let it run in the background while I’m doing an electrical drawing or writing up a quote (aka ‘working’) :-). And I was just thinking, we have a rather well known local auto club swap-meet coming up on Sunday the 17th in Cape. It would be a really great opportunity for Jack if he would claim a booth there and reach out to some of the ‘tinker’ types like myself. Jack and Richard could bring the Cadillac and a trailer loaded up with a Siemens motor and Eaton drive in the back for display. I know would generate a lot of interest. Jack could sell off some of the conversion ‘leftovers’ there too. The capaha antique car club swap meet brings in thousands of people from several states !

      1. Sorry guys. No show this week. No blog post. No EVTV.

        It started with a wedding I was supposed to go to last Thursday in Houston. I actually didn’t go. But we worked on several projects last week and went bust on all of them. So I wind up busted, winded, and butt sore with no show this week.

        Some days you’re the bug, and some days you’re the windshield.

        This week started better. The Escalade is running SWEET now with good hot water heat.. I was floating yesterday at 75 mph on cruise control. 4.6 AH per mile and 805 wH. A good 90 mile range and shifting marvelously. Finally spoofed inlet air temperature to a warmer climate and everything smoothed out.

        We also spun up the Siemens DMOC645 under Macchina control yesterday.

        We spent two hours trying to mate two 11 inch splined shaft motors with an adapter. Turns out the shafts were too long and we were too mechanically inept to bother to measure them as the motors were supposed to be DESIGNED for this adapter. 1.375 inch splined shafts cannot be made to “overlap” by 0.8 inches as it turns out. We’ll cut one off this morning.

        So lots of stuff for this Friday. But no show last Friday.

        And would you believe I installed a VERY NICE web cam aimed at the lifts over a year ago. Our DSL provider has something going, not sure what, but I can’t access the camera from outside the shop on the other side of our link. I never had time to chase it down as it seemed to be on their end. I mostly use Charger cable at home and this DSL link is moderately annoying anyway. But I’ll take another look.

        The webcam has been up for a year but not really accesible.

        Jack Rickard

        1. Dont be sorry Jack. I have spent my time with the flu and an arduino until Karin suggested it must be at least two fleas. One flu cannot take you that much time. An arduino can save you a lot power – because it keeps you from driving your car in the first place.

        2. You have given us something to look forward to for next weeks show!

          Please don’t turn on the web cam! People will glue themselves to the best reality show on the web and no cars will get converted.

          Doug

          1. I realize you are joking, but I’ve seen a shop webcam without any audio, and it is interesting for about 3-5 minutes. It was a VW restoration shop filled with people working, and it was just not that interesting. But it would be cool to see the EVTV crew working on things for a few minutes once in a while. What’s on the lift this week? When is the Rat Rod going up on the lift?

        3. Jack, curious, could you tie the heater core to the heat exchanger for the controller and get any amount of heat from it to heat the cabin? Maybe a value to swap between the heater core and the exchanger behind the grill. The controller may not create enough heat to be useable, I don’t know. Just a thought.

    2. I think I’ve already spent a show’s worth of time reloading the YouTube page waiting for the next episode. 😉 If the weekly show becomes burden, please at least keep those hands on tech bits coming via YouTube. They’re the bee’s knees for me. Thanks!

      1. Since others are too chicken to say it, if a show is delayed, it’s only common courtesy to put a notice out rather than let it hang in uncertainty.
        From experience, if it’s delayed to tuesday it usually means it’s cancelled.

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