Friday, March 22, 2013

Range Testing

Over the past few days I've been slowly testing my EV to determine it's current efficiency. Last night I did a round trip of 39.6 miles on one charge. For the first 17 miles I did not have my heat on, and the remainder I did. It was also extremely hilly and the speed ranged from 30 MPH to 45 MPH for most of the drive.

As of this morning it took 15.41 KWh to recharge the pack, or 389 WH/Mi from the wall. As the charger is at best 92% efficient according to the manual, that means my EV is currently 358 WH/Mi from the batteries.

That boils down to is I currently have a 58 mile range in the winter. Not too bad for the winter, but I want more. My goal is to have at least an 70 mile range in the summer, meaning I need to get my WH/Mi down to 298 or lower. There are still things I can do that are quick to make improvements. I need to adjust the left rear camber more and I need to pump the tires up to 40 PSI, I think they are around 32 PSI right now.

I can also explore aero dynamic mods, such as grill blocks, lowering my front suspension to match the rear, wheel skirts, etc.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

On The Road Again!

I have spent the past two days installing the new Can-EV Honda Civic motor coupling and adapter plate. It's a really nice design that doesn't need any fancy alignment.

 The Can-EV coupling is the same as what I had, but it is not a taper locking. Due to the variations in manufacturing of taper locking hubs (which has been my problem, 5 hubs of the same model, all with different dimensions), a tight fit slip design with 3 set screws is now used.
 The coupling also gets pressed onto the motor shaft all the way until it hits the bearing. This means that it has no where to go when the clutch gets pressed in. Add some locktite to each of the set screws and it's good to go.
After the coupling is installed, the adapter plate gets bolted to the motor. It's a nice tight fit.
 Then I installed the flywheel and tested it for any imbalances. There was no wobble or scrapping of any kind!
 Then I was able to mount the setup together and mount it into the Civic.
The Can-EV adapter plate and coupling setup was 1.25" shorter that my original setup, which made installing it very easy.

By the end of last night I had the motor in the Civic and bolted down. Today I spent the morning filling up the transmission with fluid, adjusting the mounts and wiring up the electronics.

Right before lunch I was able to drive the EV! But before I put the car on the ground I did a test spin and we found noise coming from the comm end of the motor. After playing with the rear motor mount, the RPM sensor and other bolts I finally inspected the brushes and found that they were the culprit. They aren't fully seated yet so they make some noise, but after some 20 MPH cruising in 2nd gear for 30 or so seconds the noise went away. It will probably take 1000+ miles to fully break in the brushes so for the next few months I won't be pulling 1000 AMPs to the motor!

I did go on a drive this afternoon and it was the best EV drive I have ever had! It was smooth, no noise from the transmission or motor, and the drag seemed a lot less than with my last coupling setup. Tonight I am setting up a tablet PC to monitor my Zilla so I can log the drives and compare them to my initial drives early this past Fall. I am also going to use my Kilowatt Meter tomorrow night to get my Wh/Mi from the wall.

It's good to be gas free again!