Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [force_ev] Newbie Questions

Expand Messages
  • Don Buckshot
    Adam, I have to say that Solectria is willing to go all out to help me with trouble shooting my car problems. There really have been very few in the year that
    Message 1 of 8 , Aug 6, 2002
    View Source
    • 0 Attachment
      Adam,
      I have to say that Solectria is willing to go all out to help me with trouble
      shooting my car problems. There really have been very few in the year that I
      have been driving it. All of these appear to have a common cause, the
      batteries.

      I sent them the charger to determine what was wrong and they checked it out,
      changed out a fuse, tested it and sent it back to me for just a few bucks.

      I sent my controller to them for an upgraded main board and they turned it
      around in a couple weeks and the cost was modest.
      They provided software to use to get error codes to find cause of problems.

      See comments below.

      Don
      816-582-6891



      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Adam Kuehn" <akuehn@...>
      To: <force_ev@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Tuesday, August 06, 2002 1:09 PM
      Subject: [force_ev] Newbie Questions


      | >I'm sending my 1996 NiMH Force to Solectria this week for repair (of the
      | >batteries, I think) Actually wish I had a simple lead acid version.
      | >Don
      |
      | Actually, this is a good segue for me. I am looking to possibly
      | acquire a used Force. It has 13K miles and the original (PbA)
      | battery pack. The seller claims that it still has a 50-mile range.
      | Assuming it has been well-cared for, what might be the typical
      | maintenance requirements on this vehicle?

      Unless something is broken, there should be almost nothing to do except charge
      it and keep the tire pressure up.

      |
      | Some background on the purpose for the question: I am not a car
      | enthusiast in general, and I don't really know my way around an ICE
      | car. I've swapped out belts and tightened a few bolts, but I'm not
      | much of a do-it-yourselfer. On the other hand, I am very interested
      | in environmental issues, and thought that an EV would be a good way
      | for me to take care of my commuting needs in a relatively
      | non-polluting way. Sort of a "put my money where my mouth is"
      | approach.

      This we have in common. I am interested in driving and promoting EVs. I am no
      longer into fiddling with cars as I once was.

      |
      | But I need to know if I'd be getting in over my head. Is maintenance
      | fairly straightforward? Is Solectria still pretty good about
      | customer support, even though they have stopped production?

      YES!

      Are parts available fairly readily? YES!

      What are the typical problems
      | encountered from simple day-to-day commuting, and will I be likely to
      | be able to handle them myself or find the help I might need?

      Should be none!

      |
      | I've spoken with a Solectria rep, and they sure sound nice on the
      | phone. But what are your real-world experiences?

      See above.

      |
      | Thanks for your help,
      | --
      |
      | -Adam Kuehn
      | Durham, NC
      |
      |
      | To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
      | force_ev-unsubscribe@egroups.com
      |
      |
      |
      | Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      |
      |
      |
    • Tom Hudson
      ... This has not been my experience, but then my car came with the thermal management system, which keeps the batteries warm (around 70 degrees F). And I live
      Message 2 of 8 , Aug 7, 2002
      View Source
      • 0 Attachment
        > The manual that came with the car was deceptive. No, you don't get a 50
        > mile range -- not in Massachusetts, anyway. In the winter, if you go more
        > than 10 miles between charges you'll dramatically shorten your battery
        > life (this is assuming you have lead-acid batteries, as I do). The manual
        > says something about not discharging more than 60 to 80 percent; what it
        > doesn't say is that when it's cold out, the actual capacity of the
        > batteries drops by at least 50%, and there's nothing in the car you can
        > look at that will tell you how far you can go before you start cutting
        > into your battery life. In my experience, if you go far enough to
        > feel the
        > car get sluggish, the damage is done -- count on buying a new set of
        > batteries 3 to 6 months later.

        This has not been my experience, but then my car came with the thermal
        management system, which keeps the batteries warm (around 70 degrees F).
        And I live in Wisconsin, which is a LOT colder than Massachusetts. I've
        taken the car out at -10 degrees F, driven 18 miles, watched a three-hour
        movie while the car sat out in the cold, and driven home. No problem. In
        fact, the batteries were about 65 degrees F when I got home (I was curious
        about how the cold had affected them).

        I've recently upgraded my batteries to NiCD modules, which don't need the
        system, so I have a set of thermal management heater mats and control boxes
        if anyone's interested. Email me privately.

        > Oh, and you won't get much heat out of the heater -- just enough to keep
        > the windshield defogged.

        My rule of thumb is that the electric heat is effective down to about 25
        degrees F. Below that I use the fuel-fired heater (we got that instead of
        air conditioning because of our colder climate). The fuel-fired heat is
        also better range-wise because it uses less electricity than the electric
        heater elements.

        -Tom

        Thomas Hudson
        http://portdistrict5.org -- 5th District Aldermanic Website
        http://portev.org -- Electric Vehicles, Solar Power & More
        http://portgardenclub.org -- Port Washington Garden Club
        http://portlightstation.org -- Light Station Restoration
      • Tom Hudson
        I thought I d drop a note about our record-setting (for us) trip yesterday. I drove the NiCD Force about 40 miles yesterday afternoon, running down to get a
        Message 3 of 8 , Aug 10, 2002
        View Source
        • 0 Attachment
          I thought I'd drop a note about our record-setting (for us) trip yesterday.
          I drove the NiCD Force about 40 miles yesterday afternoon, running down to
          get a haircut and stopping at a garden center for some potting soil, then
          came home and started charging. We then went out to dinner with some
          friends, another 40-mile-plus trip. The car hadn't been charging up long
          before we started out on the second trip, and we wound up with just under
          80Ah on the meter when we got home. I had established 85Ah for the general
          limit we'd allow on drives with the new pack, and considering that these
          trips involved a lot of 65MPH highway travel, with associated high discharge
          rates, I'm pretty impressed and happy with the result. I've never had the
          Ah-counter up that high before, and it was kind of fun to verify that it's
          no problem to do so.

          David Roden, if you're out there, do you know what the Peukert number for
          NiCDs is? I'm just curious how badly their capacity is affected by high
          discharge rates...

          -Tom

          Thomas Hudson
          http://portdistrict5.org -- 5th District Aldermanic Website
          http://portev.org -- Electric Vehicles, Solar Power & More
          http://portgardenclub.org -- Port Washington Garden Club
          http://portlightstation.org -- Light Station Restoration
        • David Roden (Akron OH USA)
          ... Peukert s equation attempts to model behavior of lead batteries, so it really doesn t apply to nickel chemistry. Nicads show relatively little loss of
          Message 4 of 8 , Aug 10, 2002
          View Source
          • 0 Attachment
            On 10 Aug 2002 at 16:39, Tom Hudson wrote:

            > David Roden, if you're out there, do you know what the Peukert number for
            > NiCDs is? I'm just curious how badly their capacity is affected by high
            > discharge rates...

            Peukert's equation attempts to model behavior of lead batteries, so it
            really doesn't apply to nickel chemistry.

            Nicads show relatively little loss of capacity at higher currents (I suspect
            most of the loss is caused by internal resistance). The figures below are
            adapted from a published Saft graph:

            0.1 C5 => 110ah
            0.5 C5 => 105ah
            1.0 C5 => 100ah
            1.5 C5 => 95ah
            2.0 C5 => 90ah

            I'm pretty sure that C5 is the 5-hour capacity (100ah), so that would be 20
            amps. (Most lead batteries' ratings are based on the 20-hour rate, which is
            a much lower current.)

            I define discharged as 5.0 volts per module under load, though Saft
            apparently define it as lower voltages for higher loads. Their definition
            would add a trivial amount, 2-5 ah, to each of the above figures except the
            first.

            Again, Peukert's equation doesn't model their behavior, so this is kind of
            deceptive. But if we approximate Peukert's number based on the 0.1C5 and
            2.0C5 capacities as if they ~were~ lead batteries, their quasi-Peukert
            number would be about 1.067. This is about the same as the very best lead
            batteries (some AGM types get as low as 1.06 to 1.10). It's ~much~ better
            than East Penn gel batteries (about 1.23) and Trojan SCS225 flooded
            batteries (1.27).

            Sounds like you're having fun, Tom!


            David Roden - Akron, Ohio, USA
            1991 Solectria Force 144vac
            1991 Ford Escort Green/EV 128vdc
            1970 GE Elec-trak E15 36vdc
            1974 Avco New Idea 36vdc
            = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
            Thou shalt not send me any thing which says unto thee, "send this to all

            thou knowest." Neither shalt thou send me any spam, lest I smite thee.

            = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

            Est. yearly US cost to safeguard Persian Gulf oil supply: $50 billion

            Est. 2001 value of US crude oil imports from Persian Gulf: $19 billion
            -- Harper's Index, April 2002
            = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
          Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.