Electric vehicles-Conversions

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Hell Razor5543
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Hell Razor5543 »

I remember a story a former friend told me, in that somebody HE knew (who lived near to property owned by the local council) was having major issues with electronic interference (amateur radio, TV, normal radio, all suffered), but the council did not appear interested in resolving the problem. My friend took his handheld transceiver, fired it up, and listened. He recognised it as computer comms noise (and they guessed that said property was a major council IT facility). He got his friend to ask the council to resolve it, and got the same no response. A few weeks later several large reams of paper were found, scattered around the town, detailing the salaries of the more senior bureaucraps, with (written across every page) something like "This data is brought to you courtesy of the non-existent shielding of ****** Town computer installations". It was not long afterwards (almost minutes later!) that the interference disappeared. I wonder why?

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Mandrake
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Apparently oil companies are starting to adjust their long term forecasts due to the impending rise of EV's:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... d-in-2030s

I found the chart showing current and proposed models available by 2020 quite interesting - it gives a good overview of what price/range/category EV's may be available three years from now if manufacturers stick to their promises! Being a US article those range figures will be EPA rating not NEDC, in other words, a realistic range per charge not fantasy! The models I'm familiar with do indeed seem to be placed on the chart based on their EPA range.

The lack of future small runabouts with 200+ miles of range is understandable (not much room for a battery, and does a small city runabout need 250 miles of range ?) but there is also a striking absence of Vans with 200+ miles range planned apart from the VW ID Buzz - which I had not heard of before. Sedans, SUV's and Sports cars seem to be the main target market for long range EV's at the moment...
Last edited by Mandrake on 26 Apr 2017, 09:44, edited 4 times in total.

Gibbo2286
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Not electric or French but environmental

Post by Gibbo2286 »

Got this in an email this morning, it's a bit slow loading:

http://www.whnmagazine.com/treelocation ... MUK0353908

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CitroJim
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by CitroJim »

Mandrake wrote:but there is also a striking absence of Vans with 200+ miles range planned apart from the VW ID Buzz


You'd have thought small vans would have been a natural and obvious target...

Seems odd as most tradesmen's vans just run around the local area and electric traction would be perfect for this...

And most definitely delivery vans...

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Mandrake
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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Looked up the VW ID Buzz to see what it is, looks like its only a concept car at the moment, and it looks very much like the spiritual successor to the beloved VW minibus :lol:

http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/volkswagen ... ctric-mpvs

Will it be on the road by 2020 ? Who knows...
Last edited by Mandrake on 26 Apr 2017, 10:01, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

CitroJim wrote:
Mandrake wrote:but there is also a striking absence of Vans with 200+ miles range planned apart from the VW ID Buzz


You'd have thought small vans would have been a natural and obvious target...

Seems odd as most tradesmen's vans just run around the local area and electric traction would be perfect for this...

And most definitely delivery vans...

I would have thought so Jim. There are quite a few vans available already, but only in the 70-100 mile range, and of the models listed to be coming by 2020 (like the BYD) you're still only looking at around 130-150 miles tops. Enough for certain uses I'm sure, but not for a general purpose van that anybody that needs a van would walk in and buy no questions asked. That is going to take 200+ miles range and excellent rapid charging support.

Perhaps the margins on vans are low compared to other cars (since they tend to be quite spartan) so they don't see the profit in it yet ?

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

I love the idea of EV's but this is just, well, bonkers. :rofl2:

https://www.carthrottle.com/post/an-ev- ... ssan-leaf/

I sure hope they waterproofed that battery pack.... :twisted:

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by CitroJim »

Mandrake wrote:I love the idea of EV's but this is just, well, bonkers. :rofl2:


Bonkers yes, but in a lovely way and just my kind of bonkers :D

I could see myself doing that...

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Jaguar i-Pace crossover SUV with 310 miles of range due for release in 2018 ?

http://www.autonews.com/article/2017013 ... -batteries

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

Way back in the thread I talked about how regeneration works and why its a great idea, but never answered the question of how much difference does it actually make to energy consumption/range ?

A couple of weeks ago I did an interesting test. I have a kWh meter which can precisely measure how many kWh it takes to recharge the battery in the car. So this includes the total consumption of the car including any inefficiencies in the charger, battery, drive electronics, motor and so on.

In all EV's you don't get any (or very little) regeneration when the battery is at 100% charge - because regeneration is trying to charge the battery and if the battery is full there is nowhere for that energy to go! Lithium Ion cells also don't take very kindly to being overcharged - they have a habit of exploding if you try... :twisted: So the electronics won't try to use regeneration on a full battery.

So I did a test where I started with a 100% charge, drove 3 miles for shopping, 30mph, normal driving, no heater, and then fully recharged again, measuring the kWh's used. Over such a short distance there is almost no regeneration available due to the nearly full battery, which you really do notice as you have to use the brake pedal like a normal car.

The figure was 3.26 miles/kWh - which is way below my typical average of about 4.4 miles/kWh, in other words energy consumption was about 26% greater per mile. So at a rough estimate, that is how much greater mileage/range you get thanks to regeneration, at least in 30mph stop start traffic, in this particular car.

That doesn't mean that the regeneration process itself is only 26% efficient, just that kinetic/gravitational potential energy that would have otherwise been lost when slowing due to friction brakes was mostly recovered and put back to work. Regeneration can only recover energy that was put into accelerating the vehicle, (kinetic energy) or climbing a hill, (gravitational potential energy) not energy that was spent by wind resistance and rolling resistance, which is the majority, hence the typical gain seems to be around 26%.

There don't seem to be much hard information that I can find on how efficient the actual regeneration process is in converting kinetic energy into electricity and charging the battery, (how good a generator is the motor?) and it probably varies from car to car, but I've seen figures of around 70-80% mentioned in some places, which is pretty good when you think about it - it means most of the energy you use to accelerate can be recovered when you decelerate, and most of the energy you use to climb a hill can be recovered when you descend, both of which would normally just heat your brakes!

It's also worth keeping in mind that during about the first 10% of battery discharge from a full charge you are not driving nearly as efficiently due to a lack of regeneration! So if you just use the car to drive 3 miles to the shops each day or pick up the kids then charging from 95% back to 100% every time you return will give a lot poorer net efficiency than simply continuing to drive until you get down to at least 70% before recharging...

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

One little piece from theJaguar I-pace article referred to the safety aspects of placement of the batteries.
What are the biggest challenges in designing an EV architecture?

Determining how the batteries will react in a crash, both in terms of the load applied to the platform, and, if there is a fire, whether something could intrude into the battery pack. For this reason, we are putting the batteries at a certain distance from the side of the vehicle. We also added a significant amount of insulating material on the sides of the battery pack.
Got me thinking whether the enthusiast conversions of ICE cars to electric, would ultimately face a nightmare of " approval" and insurance difficulties for the finished vehicles, to make them 'legal' for use on uk roads.

This Individual Vehicle Approval process might well apply.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publicati ... get-a-pass

Certainly many of the pics from conversions I have seen on http://www.evalbum.com , batteries are crammed in wherever they can be fitted, with probably not much consideration for the safety aspects.

Regards Neil

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Hell Razor5543 »

Looks like some people have gone for unusual conversions of electric vehicles;

https://recombu.com/cars/article/weetab ... -of-100mph

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by Mandrake »

NewcastleFalcon wrote:One little piece from theJaguar I-pace article referred to the safety aspects of placement of the batteries.
What are the biggest challenges in designing an EV architecture?

Determining how the batteries will react in a crash, both in terms of the load applied to the platform, and, if there is a fire, whether something could intrude into the battery pack. For this reason, we are putting the batteries at a certain distance from the side of the vehicle. We also added a significant amount of insulating material on the sides of the battery pack.
Got me thinking whether the enthusiast conversions of ICE cars to electric, would ultimately face a nightmare of " approval" and insurance difficulties for the finished vehicles, to make them 'legal' for use on uk roads.

This Individual Vehicle Approval process might well apply.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publicati ... get-a-pass

Certainly many of the pics from conversions I have seen on http://www.evalbum.com , batteries are crammed in wherever they can be fitted, with probably not much consideration for the safety aspects.

Regards Neil

When I've watched videos of home EV conversions I've had exactly the same worry Neil - they do literally seem to have crammed in as many cells as they can in one big slab into wherever they can find, for example in what used to be the engine bay etc, without any apparent regard for what might happen in a crash where the car gets crumpled up.

If those batteries are high up and in vulnerable locations within the crumple zones crash damage is highly likely to split cells open, rip interconnecting cables loose to cause short circuits etc... and there is no protective structure, fire-walling etc as done in many commercial EV's. All it takes is for one cell to get short circuited due to internal damage or an interconnect cable being ripped off and shorting against another cell and you have an instant lithium fire. We've all seen the lithium cell phone pouch style batteries on youtube that people have pierced with a knife that instantly catch fire and burn - multiply that by at least 100.

Compare that to a commercial EV like a Tesla where a massive amount of engineering went into making the battery pack safe in the event of a crash - the placement under the floor as part of the structure of the car is the safest place for the battery to be - most commercial EV's place them there, most EV conversion do not, simply because the old cars they are converting don't have the necessary floor pan design and layout to do so.

The Tesla pack is additionally a reinforced grid like structure where each battery module is hermetically sealed and literally fire-walled from adjacent modules, and also has a pressure relief vent that faces down at the road - so if any cell catches on fire the fire is contained within that one fire-walled module and vented out through the safety valve at the road. So at worst the cells in that module are all toast but the fire doesn't spread either the other modules or to the rest of the car.

In some other EV's like mine there is not this fire-walled modular design so it is a bit more liable to damage than the pack in a Tesla however the battery is still mounted under the floor and has a fairly strong chassis like structure specifically protecting it against side or front/rear impacts.

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

For a interesting, funny poke at the internal combustion engine from Renault, I would recommend this

https://www.frenchcarforum.co.uk/forum/ ... 35#p531378

Regards Neil

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Re: Electric cars/vans/bikes-Conversions/Secondhand..etc

Post by white exec »

Lovely!