Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

TeamLemon-aid wrote:

All I can say is that $50,000 is very motivating...

Right up to the point of actually doing it. I'm very happy to see so many pulling out their crayons, sharpies, and napkins. But as someone who's actually done this -- and we've done the same napkin-math, everyone is off by at least an order of magnitude...

#1: don't bother even trying to recharge anything. It takes WAY too long. And I've only been to one (two counting COTA) track with the power infrastructure to even begin trying. (and we fried every one of our poorly-designed-for-cars RC chargers trying)
#2: everyone's power budget is laughably too small. Even in the shitty 80HP 007, full acceleration is 75kW -- seventy five thousand watts. Our current cluster of BMW i3's, can sustain that for less than 15min. The motor can't sustain that for more than 60s. The controller can't sustain that for more than a few seconds.
#3: the capacity stamped on a battery is the "total capacity", not the amount you can use (more than once.) While there may be 40% of the capacity left at 3.2vpc, the amount of current available will be significantly less. (that's when you see us limping back to the pits (CMP) or parked next to a corner working waiting to be towed up a hill (barber))
#4: HEAT. Everything you do will generate massive amounts of heat. We can overload the AC-51 in the 007 in less than 3min with repeated aggressive acceleration followed by heavy regen braking. I turned accel to 80% and regen down to 30% to help, but the driver can still put it in limp mode in minutes.

Emyr wrote:

Swapping packs should be a whole load faster than glugging in gallons of gas through a standard filler pipe.

Not even remotely. With very little work, one can dump 5gal in under 30s. You won't be able to unbolt (latch -- tools aren't allowed) your tray in under 30s. And rushing a battery swap is an explosion waiting to happen. Best case, you destroy your battery interconnectors -- that's game over. Worst case... tesla fire.

TheEngineer wrote:

I think this is just getting hung up on schematics. Swapping a battery pack is roughly equivalent to refilling a gas tank.
...
I really don't think winning with an all-EV car is physically possible right now, and I think HQ agrees. but they're throwing the carrot out there to get people thinking and trying (with the HUGE caveat that not all are trusted to try, you must work with them through the whole process to ensure safety).

Perhaps. But a battery swap is more like a gas tank swap than not. And, sadly, it comes with a similar long list of safety issues.

I think it is, but it will be far more expensive than the prize. The drive systems are there -- Tesla Model S, AM Racing, Yasa. Power systems are still the expensive roadblock. The typical 2 day / 16 hour Lemons race would take dozens of battery packs. Assuming 50kWhr average -- and I'm not sure that's plausible or a winning pace, using 100kW telsa assemblies at an estimated 33kW usable, you'd need 2 per hour. So that's 32 (plus some extra.) That's 51 THOUSAND pounds of batteries, at over 250k$. (the 007 would need 154k$ worth of model S sub-modules) Plus the ~11k$ for the motor, controller, wiring, etc. And then you have to come up with a way to safely rapidly replace the battery assembly with absolutely zero possibility of it "falling out" on track, under any circumstances. Without. Tools.

(Unless Jay relaxes that rule, your battery swap must be tool-less. We were never allowed to hot-pit swap because it takes tools to unbolt and lift our assembly. Rolling out onto pit road with an engine lift and impact driver was an absolute "no" from Jay, and every other team. As VK has already said, no one else even gets to wipe down the windshield.)

Duff Beer Civic (#128) -- 2014 Sebring - Class B (#1 of 7), 2016 Barber - Class B
1981 Jet Electrica 007 [Plymouth Horizon TC3] (#128) -- Mk.1 - Index of Effluency Eco (IOEe) @ 2016 Lemons South Fall, Mk.2 - Judges' Choice @ 2017 'Shine Country Classic, Mk.3 - Index of Effluency @ 2017 Southern Discomfort

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

Guildenstern wrote:

So is the solution putting the transponder as far away from the electronics as possible? Or sticking it in a Mu metal cone pointed at the track?

Our "solution" was putting it on the rear bumper, as far from the power systems as possible. But also one light tap from being destroyed. It was barely readable.

The original DC motor didn't create any problems. The transponder was inches away from that thing.

Duff Beer Civic (#128) -- 2014 Sebring - Class B (#1 of 7), 2016 Barber - Class B
1981 Jet Electrica 007 [Plymouth Horizon TC3] (#128) -- Mk.1 - Index of Effluency Eco (IOEe) @ 2016 Lemons South Fall, Mk.2 - Judges' Choice @ 2017 'Shine Country Classic, Mk.3 - Index of Effluency @ 2017 Southern Discomfort

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

Again, or just hack the transponder on a known-to-win class A team.  Late night shenanigans earn hopeless EV car team to $50K win.

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

By hack you mean just ziptie your transponder to their car somewhere in front of where they mounted theirs?

Mistake By The Lake Racing (MBTL)
88 Thunderbird "THUNDERBIRDS ARE GO!"
A&D: 2014 Sebrings at Sebring (NSF), 2014 NJMP2 Jurassic Park (SpeedyCop), 2012 Summit Point J30 (PiNuts)
2018 Route Sucky-Suck Rally Miata.

155 (edited by Lemon_Newton-Metre 2019-03-13 01:09 PM)

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

RSB wrote:
Lemon_Newton-Metre wrote:

There you go! [ above link edited to easily read the title ] A separate, parallel lane for EVs to recharge on the long straight, and we're off to the races - so to speak...


Or just go overhead.... en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bumper_cars#/media/File:Autoscooter1.jpg

Bumpercars? No, not for Lemons.

Champ/Chumpcar, by reputation here, yes - but not for Lemons.

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

jfbeam wrote:

{big snip} (Unless Jay relaxes that rule, your battery swap must be tool-less. We were never allowed to hot-pit swap because it takes tools to unbolt and lift our assembly. Rolling out onto pit road with an engine lift and impact driver was an absolute "no" from Jay, and every other team. As VK has already said, no one else even gets to wipe down the windshield.)

I won't argue the analogies of battery pack to fuel tank. I understand where everyone is coming from on that, and you're right. I was just making the point that HQ may have to write their own definitions for EVs as they are not directly compatible. Hence them saying you must work with them through the whole build.

I honestly wonder what HQ would consider to be tool-less. Because I can think up exactly how I'd build a palatalized system that requires no hand tools to install and secure. But there's no guarantee that my definition is the same as theirs. For example if you had a gear reduction onto some threaded rod that drew the battery pack into the connectors and fully seated it, with the gear reduction setup such that you could just turn a hand wheel and not need to bring a wrench with you, does that count? What about a toggle clamp style lever to draw it in and then some large pins to secure the pack in place? No tools required there. Does HQ count a rolling cart to move the battery pack to be a tool?


The rest of it is easy. Someone makes a blind mate connector(s) that can handle the power. If tesla is showing off hot swap battery packs on stage, they already have one. Use those with some large beefy tapered alignment pins and receptacles to make sure you align the connectors right. Have a guide fence to make sure the pack is being slid in centered at at the right height until the pins engage. Build rollers into the mounting frame to assist with install/uninstall. Build your battery cart to work like a motorcycle lift with a foot operated hydraulic to make it able to adjust to varying car heights on uneven ground so it can always be lined up.

If  you can come to an agreement with HQ on what constitutes a tool-less install method, and they agree to some terms that allow you to use the hot pits, I don't think the physical swapping of the battery pack will be what holds you back. But again, it all depends on what HQ decides is ok.

20+ Time Loser FutilityMotorsport
Turbo Dodge Powered E36 Build
2008 Saab 9-5Aero Wagon
Retired - 1989 Dodge Daytona Shelby 2011-2015 "Lifetime Award for Lack of Achievement" IOE, 3X I got screwed, Organizer's Choice

157 (edited by darkostoj 2019-03-14 05:27 PM)

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

I'll just leave my last purchase here.


https://i.imgur.com/z6R0LKo.png

Team Pacific Motors - 1977 Rolls Royce Silver Wraith

2018 Where the Elite Meet to Cheat - Organizer's Choice Award

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

darkostoj wrote:

I'll just leave this here......

https://i.imgur.com/z6R0LKo.png

If you're in CA, wrecked Teslas are rather easy to find -- not always for cheap, 'tho. I'm going to need about 30 more. And a semi. And a much larger shop/warehouse.

Duff Beer Civic (#128) -- 2014 Sebring - Class B (#1 of 7), 2016 Barber - Class B
1981 Jet Electrica 007 [Plymouth Horizon TC3] (#128) -- Mk.1 - Index of Effluency Eco (IOEe) @ 2016 Lemons South Fall, Mk.2 - Judges' Choice @ 2017 'Shine Country Classic, Mk.3 - Index of Effluency @ 2017 Southern Discomfort

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

TheEngineer wrote:

Does HQ count a rolling cart to move the battery pack to be a tool?

Tool-less has historically meant "no tools, hands only". If you roll your wagon/cart/whatever of gas cans onto the hot pit, you're going to get yelled at. (for one, that's too much gas over the wall)

Battery swaps will be a big part of any EV. Dino-burners go 2+ hours without stopping; your EV won't last 30min without needing to stop. In a 9hr day, most teams stop 3-5 times. An EV will need to stop, conservatively, 15+ times. Your battery swap cannot be rushed. Go find the Rich Rebuilds video where he puts the battery back in a model S -- it wasn't lined up 100% (fraction of a mm) and crushed the power connector and coolant ports. Yes, all EVs have modular power connectors, but the alignment is critical -- easy for the robots at the factory, not so much for Lemons apes on the hot pit. Plus, you're working with 500-1500lb units; one wrong move can instantly remove a finger, hand, or leg.

(For the record, the Mk1 007 used 12v marine deep cycle batteries. Those are ~100lb, plenty to break fingers and hands, or crush a foot if dropped. The Mk2 with volt sub-packs are each around 500lb -- two man lift. Mk3, with the Back Saver 3000(tm), was an 800lb pallet moved with an engine lift. It takes a crew to swap those, and you NEVER get under the module.)

(I'll also add, the modular connectors on commercial cars are not designed for the continuous high current duty cycle of racing. Our Mk2 design had a Leaf/Prius(?) emergency disconnect on it. We burned it up. The contact pins can't take it.)

This definitely will have to be clarified by HQ.

Duff Beer Civic (#128) -- 2014 Sebring - Class B (#1 of 7), 2016 Barber - Class B
1981 Jet Electrica 007 [Plymouth Horizon TC3] (#128) -- Mk.1 - Index of Effluency Eco (IOEe) @ 2016 Lemons South Fall, Mk.2 - Judges' Choice @ 2017 'Shine Country Classic, Mk.3 - Index of Effluency @ 2017 Southern Discomfort

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

I'm aware of alignment needs. I design boxes that use blind mate connectors all the time for work and alignment systems to protect the connectors are important. It also depends on the connector you pick. Some are much more forgiving than others, and ones meant for frequent cycles are more tolerant. It would make sense that in most production cars Tesla is using a less tolerant connector as they don't intend to remove the battery often. If you ever see battery swap stations become a common thing, expect to see the connectors change.

I just like the mental exercise of the mechanical aspect of the challenge. I can't solve the energy storage problem, but swapping a pack quick and safely? That's my area. All your concerns are valid, and each could be worked with and solved. Just a matter of fully understanding the constraints that HQ would put in place.

20+ Time Loser FutilityMotorsport
Turbo Dodge Powered E36 Build
2008 Saab 9-5Aero Wagon
Retired - 1989 Dodge Daytona Shelby 2011-2015 "Lifetime Award for Lack of Achievement" IOE, 3X I got screwed, Organizer's Choice

161 (edited by chaase 2019-03-14 10:51 AM)

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

TheEngineer wrote:

I'm aware of alignment needs. I design boxes that use blind mate connectors all the time for work and alignment systems to protect the connectors are important. It also depends on the connector you pick. Some are much more forgiving than others, and ones meant for frequent cycles are more tolerant. It would make sense that in most production cars Tesla is using a less tolerant connector as they don't intend to remove the battery often. If you ever see battery swap stations become a common thing, expect to see the connectors change.

I just like the mental exercise of the mechanical aspect of the challenge. I can't solve the energy storage problem, but swapping a pack quick and safely? That's my area. All your concerns are valid, and each could be worked with and solved. Just a matter of fully understanding the constraints that HQ would put in place.

The reality of the situation is Jay and company are not expecting people to show up the first race expecting to win or even with a viable plan to win. I think this is more of a publicity stunt to get people interested in the topic and giving it a shot. If this is something people wanted to tackle, then you build a car and load it with batteries. Drive it around for a bit on the track and then take it to your paddock space and recharge it or swap battery packs.

I wouldn't even consider trying to do this in the hot pit.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge (reborn!), Saturn SL1 - needs a theme
1974 AMC Javelin - Oscar's Trash heap - Organizer's Choice

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

I think that a lot of people might not be thinking far enough outside the box.

I agree that swapping a stock battery pack in the hot pits is never going to happen. Even the tesla batterys are not nearly interchangeable enough. For changing batteries to be remotely feasible, they would have to be custom side loading packs with built in monitoring electronics, cooling, dry break connectors for the water cooling, and likely custom high amp power connectors. The entire car would have to be modified and designed to integrate the custom packs. And the swapping mechanism/process would need to be incorporated from the begining of the design phase.

I don't think a stock ev car would be remotely competitive, it would have to be an ev conversion of a miata or something.

Moot Point Racing - 1991 Volvo 240 - #496

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

mully006 wrote:

I don't think a stock ev car would be remotely competitive, it would have to be an ev conversion of a miata or something.

Car itself must still be $500, can't use a Tesla itself.
A miata with 3000lbs of battery is not going to handle like a miata.
One could maybe build a class C winner out of a tesla (well three of them), but no way class A.

Tesla batteries btw are not safe technology, lots of engineering in the car to keep them safe, once out of the car, all safety is off.

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

I wouldn't go with a blind mate for hot pit or any kind of field use. I've had too many times when some foreign element gets in there and horks everything up.

For electrical connects/disconnects, an Anderson SB 350 (500A, 600V) is cheap ($14) and takes about one second to connect or disconnect. It also covers the leads and only connects one way. Good for thousands of cycles and can even be hot-plugged to 100 amps. We use them on our EV and they work well.

For liquid cooling, we used hydraulic quick-disconnects from tractor attachments. Again, cheap, only takes a second to connect/disconnect, and good for a lot of cycles.

Any hatchback or truck is easy enough to rig up for battery swaps. Make a flat plate for the battery module in back, put rollers on it, then either locking bars across the top of the module or holes through it with long bolts that go through holes in the box to captive nuts on the bottom of the car. We've done it both ways in the Electrica. If anyone wants to stop by the Duff Beer paddock at CMP, then I'll show you. We used hex-head bolts and a battery-powered impact gun, but you could weld a rod across the bolt head for a handle and go toolless. Make the cart the same height as the car plate and roll one box out on to an empty cart and roll the other one on from the new cart.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

As a measure of the challenge consider that there is currently (heh) not an electric vehicle in existence that could win a Lemons race over-all.*  At any price, much less $500 plus drivetrain.

Not even with the addition of a magical hot-swap system that allows one to replace battery packs  in five seconds.  New-spec Formula E cars are supposed to have 50-minute range**.  First of all you aren't going to race a Formula E car in Lemons, but even if you could and even if it lived you wouldn't win having to stop every 50 minutes.

Though I do wonder what one of those things would be like to drive on treadwear 200 tires...

* Absent meta-strategies like bribing the field to roll over.

** Yes, I realize that 50 minutes is a duration and not a range, and that it probably comes at an average speed greater than that sustainable in a typical Lemons race, but I still think it is still a useful comparison.

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

hoverducky wrote:

As a measure of the challenge consider that there is currently (heh) not an electric vehicle in existence that could win a Lemons race over-all.*  At any price, much less $500 plus drivetrain.

Not even with the addition of a magical hot-swap system that allows one to replace battery packs  in five seconds.  New-spec Formula E cars are supposed to have 50-minute range**.  First of all you aren't going to race a Formula E car in Lemons, but even if you could and even if it lived you wouldn't win having to stop every 50 minutes.

Though I do wonder what one of those things would be like to drive on treadwear 200 tires...

My guess is that it would still be a blast to drive. If you were to de-tune the car and keep the same batteries, you could probably get to 1.5 hours per charge. You still can't win but you get a little closer.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge (reborn!), Saturn SL1 - needs a theme
1974 AMC Javelin - Oscar's Trash heap - Organizer's Choice

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

As many have said, you won't win overall in an EV, because math.

BUT................

If it runs and turns laps, then you will probably win a trophy, and you WILL be a certified lunatic/bad-ass/idiot with the respect/fear/pity of your peers. Plus if you enter your EV at CMP, then we may show up with our EV and we can duke it out for the EV Endurance World Championship! Just be sure to bring your A game, because we are UNDEFEATED in class E.

http://www.carolinahondas.com/members/roger-albums-stuff-picture6816-sparky330.jpg

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

Sir, I say sir. I accept your challenge! tongue

K Car Stalker

169 (edited by Ratdoggy 2019-03-23 07:09 AM)

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

Well I for one have a way to win......
I'll even share it with you.
If I manage the potluck dinner and make some bad devilled eggs for the potluck and our team doesn't eat them.........
All I'd need is an electric car and 250 cases of food poisoning for Jay to be out $50K in nickels tongue

Gingerman Oct 2016,Gingerman April 2017
Corvette track July 2017  (engine went Kaboom)
Gingerman June 2018, Gingerman Oct 2018

170 (edited by rmcdaniels 2019-03-23 09:23 PM)

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

firegremlin wrote:

Sir, I say sir. I accept your challenge! tongue

I can not imagine the awesome terribleness of any EV that you would bring.

I will have our EV at the 24, but with a passenger seat and in range-extended mode for the rally. We'll see how it does on a road trip to Key West. Maybe if it makes it, then we can race it at the September race.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

cheseroo wrote:

Have you ever seen those microwave towers with the dishes on them that are covered by fabric?  That fabric is so that birds dont get vaporized if they fly in there.

we're totally in the weeds now, but I just wanted to say that what you're referring to is called a "radome" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radome

while the function of a radome does include keeping birds (and other elements) out of the microwave horn, very few (if any) of these have enough RF power to injure a bird, even if it flew inside or directly in front of it. most terrestrial point-to-point microwave shots only use a few (10-20) watts of power.

source: manage licenses for many ground-based radars in the kW-MW power range

"THE WONDERMENT CONSORTIUM"
Nothing's for certain, it could always go wrong. Come in when it's raining, go on out when it's gone.

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

Yep, you'd need a fire control radar or a long-range air-search system to really cook a pigeon.

Everybody grab your brooms, it's shenanigans!

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

hoverducky wrote:

As a measure of the challenge consider that there is currently (heh) not an electric vehicle in existence that could win a Lemons race over-all.*  At any price, much less $500 plus drivetrain.

(a) EVs are budget exempt -- currently.
(b) There are EV race cars with the speed to win overall. The key issue is fuel -- batteries. I doubt any of the teams with such cars even have enough batteries to last an entire day, much less the two days of a race. Plus, do you really want 3 semi's worth of shit showing up for a single car?

I can build a Class A paced EV. It just takes money. (about $10-15k) I can build hot-swap battery systems -- expense is a matter of what Jay wants w.r.t. safety. However, I'd need about three dozen of those systems. For the not-remotely-class-A-fast 007, that's $150k worth of batteries; a class-A pace might take 10x that.

NOT THAT I WANT TO DISCOURAGE ANYONE FROM ATTEMPTING IT. By all means, I want to see more "Class E" cars. Yes, it will be a few more years before Jay's nickels are in danger. (unless Bream wants to bring his warehouse of batteries to a track.)

Duff Beer Civic (#128) -- 2014 Sebring - Class B (#1 of 7), 2016 Barber - Class B
1981 Jet Electrica 007 [Plymouth Horizon TC3] (#128) -- Mk.1 - Index of Effluency Eco (IOEe) @ 2016 Lemons South Fall, Mk.2 - Judges' Choice @ 2017 'Shine Country Classic, Mk.3 - Index of Effluency @ 2017 Southern Discomfort

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

rmcdaniels wrote:
firegremlin wrote:

Sir, I say sir. I accept your challenge! tongue

I can not imagine the awesome terribleness of any EV that you would bring.

I think it involves something along the lines of a pace vehicle and a long 240VAC extension cord on a vacuum-cleaner style retraction mechanism to maintain a slight tension between the EV and the Generator-wielding pace car. 

Nothing in the rules against that....

Tunachuckers: 10 Years of Sucking at Sucking
2008- 2010:  1966 Volvo 122, "Charlie"
2010-present:  1975 Ford LTD Landau...doesn't have a name?
2018:  1951 "Plymford".  Organizer's Choice - CMP Fall 2018 Hurricane Florence reschedule

Re: Is winning an overall race with an EV vehicle even possible?

jfbeam wrote:

(a) EVs are budget exempt -- currently.

Not true. 

3.L.2.a All EV-drive-system chargers, batteries, motors, controllers, connectors, and cables do not count toward the $500 price limit. (To inquire about price exemptions for other EV drive-system components and almost certainly be rejected, contact Lemons HQ.)
3.L.2.b All mechanical components adapted from ICE vehicles for your build (examples include motor mounts, transmissions, differentials, driveshafts, and suspension components) do count toward the $500 price limit.