Saturday morning now, just waking up after a very big Friday in the shed with around 6 people:
- We completed, fitted, and installed the rear battery rack. We even wired up the rear batteries. Looks fantastic and very satisfying to see the rear of the car looking like the finished product!
- The more complex front rack has been built in situ (much of the welding taking place while inside the car to help alignment). This morning we will pull it out, clean it up, and paint. Ready for afternoon installation.
- Instrumentation leads (Paktrckr) constructed, current sensor fitted, ready for wiring. Thanks Joel!
- Throttle pot box mounted and throttle linkages fabricated and tested. Nice work Michael, John, and team.
- Vacuum pump installed (thanks Eric), need to connect up vacuum tubing now.
- Clamps that secure cables under the car fitted, ready for under body wiring.
Today we need to fit the DC-DC converter, vacuum switch, charger, emergency stop and Paktrckr head unit. Then start on wiring everything up.
Progress was less obvious to the naked eye on Day 2, as we hit some of the fiddly steps like gradually building up the front battery rack to fit the batteries and controller tray, and fitting the vacuum pump. Not as visibly impressive as lifting motors in and out.
However it is these custom fabrications steps that often take the lone EV constructor months.
Relating this project to my first EV: On day one we progressed as far as I did in the first 6 months. On day 2 we progressed another 5 months. We are now at roughly the point (wiring) where I was 3 days before the first drive. So I am hoping to get this puppy on the road today!
My original goal for this project was a 1 week conversion. I was a little nervous when so many people offered to come past and help; I was afraid I would be distracted from the core conversion work. However the opposite has happened – it is because of all these people that we have made such wonderful progress. I don’t think we would have made it in 1 week if it was just Michael and I. This tells me that all of the custom fabrication steps are still very time consuming. Need to work out a better way to do these, and speed things up for the next conversion. For example building a jig from our current racks, or building 10 racks at once.
We have two videos of Day 2 of the EV conversion labeled Day 2 and Day 3 taken by an OLPC rigged up by Joel above the car. The videos were split in two due to an accidental power cut. See if you can spot the welding sparks! More photos and videos time come – I need to catch up with the others first!