Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

Been a while, and distressingly little progress, but other life-issues have been getting in the way.

We ended up opting for a huge AC motor that they use for full-size SUV conversions. We should have about nine times the power that we had at CMP. Probably enough to shred our old VW Rabbit transmission if we are not careful. We're also getting a fully programmable controller, so Robert and I can go about our lead-footed ways and not overheat it, because Ricky will only let us have a couple of hundred amps. The motor and custom transmission adapter plate are supposed to be here next week. The adapter plate has shipped. Time is getting tight, so I'm probably only going to have 12kWh of batteries in the car at a time because that's all that I can fit in the existing battery box (I originally wanted 18kWh). That should be good for something north of 35 miles, and we'll have three sets of batteries, so around 50 laps before we have to recharge. We're using two banks of three large drone chargers powered by big DC power supplies from Cisco POE IP Telephony switches. Much experimentation and thought has gone in to the charging system; if you charge or discharge lithium ion batteries incorrectly, then they catch fire and are very hard to put out. We also have a discharge monitoring system that will cut a pack off if it drops too low or is discharging unevenly.

I figure we'll have a morning session in which we turn about 50 laps, then take a siesta while charging completes, and then an afternoon session of about 50 laps. On Sunday we will repeat. If all of this actually works, then we'll have to use race budget for more battery packs until we can stay out all day. Unless of course all of this fails miserably, which is probably likely, although after the original incredibly sketchy setup lasted all weekend (for various definitions of "all weekend"), we're feeling lucky.

We will have regenerative braking, but not like a normal EV, it will be stronger and only used for primary braking at the end of straights, probably activated with a button. Batteries and controller will be liquid cooled, or possibly heated, depending on outside temps.

Battery assemblies will connect to power and cooling buses using 350A Anderson connectors and tractor hydraulic line disconnects, so theoretically we should be able to do a hot-pit refuel.

Shocks/springs/tires should be better, allowing us to stay on line in traffic without being a danger to ourselves and others. We will not be fast by any stretch of the imagination, but should be able to ditch the bicycle flags.

There's probably more, and it's going to be a scramble to get it done, but if most of this stuff works, then it should really kick ass.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

What the nominal voltage you going to run at?
From what I understand, you going for 3hr recharge time for your battery bank? 1.5hrs each battery bank?
Unless, you planning to do rapid charge only, and get each pack to 70% or so in an hrs and get it out on the track.
just curious how EV racing would compare to gasoline racing strategies.

I mean, Formula E switches cars lol... 12kwh is about 1 gallon of gas. an RV outlet would lets say 230V and 30A, so thats near 7kw, so 12kwh pack recharge to 70% would be 1.2hrs. Late night math, I apologize.

https://www.facebook.com/greatglobsofoil/
This car....Is said to have a will of it's Own. Twisting its own body in rage...It accelerates on.
1978 Opel/Buick Isuzu - 3 races, IOE, Incredible Feats in Badge Engineering
http://i.imgur.com/m3KbADo.gif

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

144v, I figure we can pump 45A back in to each battery, with the generator of the RV powering chargers for two batteries. Basically 3 hour charge times. We can hang another battery off of an RV outlet, so we may try to snag a couple of those. We will have an extra charged battery, so charging three batteries should get us through our plan. Until we put together funds for enough batteries to get us through the day (16kWh of batteries costs about $1500 delivered), we'll be stuck with a nice lazy mid-day break while we wait for batteries to charge. At CMP we grilled up some Spam and then took a nap. It was actually very pleasant.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

https://sandiego.craigslist.org/csd/cto/5929603128.html
https://images.craigslist.org/00o0o_dxD6fXNyQrp_600x450.jpg

1991 Mazda Miata EV (Electric) - $800 (San Diego)
1991 Mazda Miata EV
all electric.
very rare car!
190k miles
clean title
manual transmission

It's being auctioned off tomorrow. Reportedly the starting bid is $500. I think they tried to auction it off a week or two ago but it popped back up for sale this week. So I emailed and got a response that it was part of an auction Dec 24th.
http://sandiego.carpediem.cd/events/204 … o-auction/

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

A Miata!

$500 MY ASS!

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

rmcdaniels wrote:

144v, I figure we can pump 45A back in to each battery, with the generator of the RV powering chargers for two batteries. Basically 3 hour charge times. We can hang another battery off of an RV outlet, so we may try to snag a couple of those. We will have an extra charged battery, so charging three batteries should get us through our plan. Until we put together funds for enough batteries to get us through the day (16kWh of batteries costs about $1500 delivered), we'll be stuck with a nice lazy mid-day break while we wait for batteries to charge. At CMP we grilled up some Spam and then took a nap. It was actually very pleasant.

what kind of motor you putting into that thing? naps are always good smile

https://www.facebook.com/greatglobsofoil/
This car....Is said to have a will of it's Own. Twisting its own body in rage...It accelerates on.
1978 Opel/Buick Isuzu - 3 races, IOE, Incredible Feats in Badge Engineering
http://i.imgur.com/m3KbADo.gif

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

I'm not 100% sure; Ricky is in charge of the motor. It's an HPEVS motor, maybe an AC76 or AC51, with a nice new Curtis controller. I figure we'll limit ourselves to 200A-250A, giving us 35-40 HP and a lot of low-end torque, so very similar to an old VW Rabbit diesel, which should work well with our '81 VW Rabbit diesel transmission.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

I can't tell if the miata sold or not. Video guy was talking over and my spanish is not muy good. But it rolled through at 1h58:30 of this facebook live video
https://www.facebook.com/OtayAutoAuctio … mp;theater

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

Thanks for the update. I'm fiercely Googling what you are posting to up my EV knowledge vicariously.

Wheeler Dealers just did an electric car episode and it looked like they used Curtis controllers. And their motors (they put two inline) look like the HPEVS, although I suppose modern brushless AC EV motors look alike. The project was updating an early 90's EV conversion of a Bi-Turbo. Body and interior were in pretty nice shape, so most of the work was updating the EV drive system.

10X Loser - Delinquent Racing - '86 TRUMPACO Merkur - '17 Sears Pointless, '16 Pointless, Vodden, Arse-Sweat, Button Turrible, Arse-Freeze - 2015 Vodden, Arse Freeze. '96 Ford Taurus SHO Skunk - '15 Pointless. Button Turrible.

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

My brother told me about that. I think they used an AC-34/35 dual-motor setup. That's a badass setup if you have a longitudinal powertrain. I'm hoping that we can re-use most of our powertrain mounting HW by keeping a similar powertrain layout and size. We have so many other things to take care of; re-engineering the powertrain just isn't on the schedule.

Looking back at CMP, we simply bought the most hopeless-looking car that we could find on CL and raced it. There were so many things that we did wrong, even on the 35YO stuff that was in it, we could have done a lot better. Simple stuff, like motor cooling was just very wrong. It's like whoever designed it had no understanding whatsoever of fluid dynamics. For $40 worth of parts and about 10 minutes of work, I probably could have stopped the overheating issue, but we had zero experience with EV racing, so we didn't know what was important and what wasn't.

Going in to Barber, I think that we'll be much better. The improved motor/controller is obviously going to be big, but probably the biggest factor will be battery technology and how we manage it. It's just complicated to correctly use hundreds of little pouch cells as opposed to a few golf cart batteries.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

go full lemons, scavenge alternators from pick and pulls. rewire them as motors. have fun smile

https://www.facebook.com/greatglobsofoil/
This car....Is said to have a will of it's Own. Twisting its own body in rage...It accelerates on.
1978 Opel/Buick Isuzu - 3 races, IOE, Incredible Feats in Badge Engineering
http://i.imgur.com/m3KbADo.gif

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

rmcdaniels wrote:

A Miata!

$500 MY ASS!

I am inclined to agree, however, I'll make an exception for the exceptional ridiculousness of this idea.

THAT BETTER BE THEMED AS OBNOXIOUS SINGING GLITTER PONIES OR GTFOOOOOOOO, THOUGH.

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

I was just kidding; I'm guessing that it's a low-voltage golf-cart battery conversion job and will face the same challenges as our Jet Electrica 007.

If anyone here has any sense at all and wants to do an electric car(admittedly unlikely, on multiple levels), then they'll buy a totaled out Leaf from Copart. It will be the fastest and cheapest way to go.

Of course, if after all the work and the $ that we're pouring into this sad relic, this thing actually works, then we'll probably swap the electric bits to an S10 next year so we can load up on batteries and have something that we can get parts for.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

rmcdaniels wrote:

If anyone here has any sense at all and wants to do an electric car... then they'll buy a totaled out Leaf from Copart.

Or a Lectric Leopard. LeMons needs a Lectric Leopard.

1982 MG Metro 1300: IOE 2015 Pacific Northworst GP, Longest Distance 2010 Cd'L Box Wine Country Classic
1980 KV Mini 1: Worst of Show and Fright Pig Supremo 2009 Concours d'LeMons
1978 H Special: Second-Round Elimination 2010 LeMons Pinewood Derby at Sears Pointless
1967 SAAB 96: IOE 2012 Pacific Northworst GP

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

Yeah, definitely get that. I can see no way in which that could possibly fail. It can only result in total domination.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

The UPS truck stopped at the Duff Beer Global Headquarters for World Domination Millennial Northern Hemisphere Campus Complex today:

http://www.carolinahondas.com/members/roger-albums-stuff-picture6618-ev-stuff.jpg


We are happy, this thing may actually be running for Barber.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

The team converged this week and got some stuff done. This thing may be drivable this weekend. Here's the new motor and battery setup:

http://www.carolinahondas.com/members/roger-albums-stuff-picture6620-motor1.jpg

http://www.carolinahondas.com/members/roger-albums-stuff-picture6619-battery1.jpg

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

So the motor looks about the same size as the old one, but the battery looks a lot smaller than the lead acid ones.
How does the new battery compare amp hour wise vs. what it's replacing? 
Are you going to have to put any batteries up front like last time?
If not then it should run better and have a better center of gravity, just in the 300 lbs. of batteries it's not lugging around.

Can't wait to see what it will do on the hills at Barber...

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

The motor is physically smaller and much lighter, but it's a 3-phase AC motor and is much more powerful, as well as 35 years newer.

The batteries (one was pictured, we will be using two of those) are much smaller and lighter. We'll lose over 600 pounds of battery weight. There will be no batteries up front (for now). At CMP, I may try mounting another battery pack up front.

Technically we'll have the same kWh as before, but with much better chemistry, so we should be able to actually use all of the power. Also with a much more efficient AC motor with regenerative braking, we should be able to go farther for the same power budget. I think the old motor leaked about 35 volts to the case, and it ran far too hot due to not having any cooling air flow (and being jammed full of mouse leavings), so we probably weren't getting nearly as many miles/kWh as we should have.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

Here's one of the new battery packs fully assembled with power, charging, and cooling fittings. Robert even put nifty handles on it. We'll have seven of these, which should be enough to keep us on track about half of the time. We'll need twice as many to stay out full time. Even buying hella-butt-cheap junkyard Chevy Volt units, batteries are by far the most expensive part of the build:

http://www.carolinahondas.com/members/roger-albums-stuff-picture6621-battery3.jpg

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

Please be careful with those Lithium pouch cells from the Volt pack.

I really hope you guys are familiar with Lithium cell technology. Keep the cell voltage between 2.65V and 4.10V. Once a cell drops below 2.5V, it becomes virtually impossible to recharge it. Once it gets above 4.25V, it becomes a Note-7'esque time bomb.

If you're running these cells in a 12S configuration (12 cells in series), please consider adding individual cell monitors. One dead or over heated cell can cause and overcharging situation on the remaining cells. Also, make sure you know how to put out a Lithium fire. These cells are no joke.

Again, please be careful.

11(1) Toyota Celica - Team Reynolds Style
555 Furd Focus - Sideways to Victory
92 Plymouth Sundance - Unified Partnership of Pentastar Racers (good riddance!)
81 Dodge Mirada / 181 Acura Integra  - Team Sheen

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

I think 2.65 is way too low. You can do it, but it really drops the number of charge cycles you can get out of them, and the batteries are the most expensive part of the car, so I want to keep them in good shape. We're planning on pitting if any cell drops below 3.2.

We've got six 12s balancing chargers, so after every discharge they will be top balanced to 4.1. Between 4.1 and 3.2 we should get 70% of the usable energy out of them without taking any chances or damaging them. They should tolerate being charged at .8C, and we'll only be charging them at .4C, basically level 2 charging. At .4C they don't even get a little warm while charging.

We've got a crapload of programmable RC cell monitors that we've wired in to the factory BMS ports and set to alarm at 3.2, so all cells will be monitored. Ideally we'll pit before we get to 3.2, but if the buzzers and lights go off, then we'll pit immediately.

Lithium ion batteries, unlike lithium metal batteries, have very little lithium in them, so you don't have to avoid water or use class D extinguishers on them. If one goes in to thermal runaway and burns, then we'll treat it like any other fire and break out some marshmallows. They will be sealed inside a steel box in the back of the car, so it'll make a mess, but shouldn't really harm anything.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

I finally got our charging setup locked down and tested. It's interesting; I'm figuring out how many outlets we'll need to keep this circus going (not as much of an issue at Barber, but we'll be back at CMP soon enough), and doing the math on the old car battery chargers:

Each 20A charger used 5A of 120v power or 600 watts, while producing 280w of 14v battery charging power. That's about 47% efficiency, which is awful.

Now doing the math on the new battery chargers, which are DC-DC converters running off of HP server power supplies, each charger uses 3.3A of 120v power or 396 watts, and produces 1008w of 48v charging power.  That's 255% efficiency, which is impossible.

I'm going to try changing the batteries in my ammeter.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

You may have solved an ago old problem...


http://images.mastermp3.net/artwork/nw/nwb06b3ef7750535ee679cb455c09fbd63.jpg

10X Loser - Delinquent Racing - '86 TRUMPACO Merkur - '17 Sears Pointless, '16 Pointless, Vodden, Arse-Sweat, Button Turrible, Arse-Freeze - 2015 Vodden, Arse Freeze. '96 Ford Taurus SHO Skunk - '15 Pointless. Button Turrible.

Re: "Racing" the Duff Beer Electric Car

This car sucks.

For CMP, we mostly didn't touch it mechanically. The steering rack was broken and the right front wheel flopped around a bit, so I jammed a greased-up piece of radiator hose in the tube to shim it, and then we ran the car. The rubber brake lines then collapsed and locked up the brakes, so I replaced those as well. The rest of it is mostly original 1981 Simca/Mopar/VW/Jet hardware, right down to the brake shoes.

For Barber, we plan on actually racing, so now I have to check the brakes, bushings, bearings, etc. Everything is rusted solid. I had to pull the rear hubs and put them in a press to get the brake drums off. The brake drums were crumpling like old beer cans before they finally popped off the hubs. I'd replace the hubs, but nobody makes those. If you touch the brake lines, then they crack like pretzels; they appear to be made of mostly rust. I'm replacing every brake line with new ni-copp lines. The documentation on this car is sketchy, most parts places think that it has leaf springs in the rear. When I pulled the brake shoes, the disturbance cracked the rubber seals in the wheel cylinders because they were so brittle.

On the bright side, I'm having to replace almost everything and 90% of it is dirt cheap from Rock Auto, so it should ride nicely. It is kind of funny to buy "new" parts in faded cardboard boxes that were made 20 years ago.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!