I NEED to build an EV - So I need some feedback

I can not afford to build a conventional EV. If I had $10k I would not be so worried about gas prices :frowning:

SO it looks like I probably won’t be able to replace my commuting vehicle but I want to start SOMEWHERE.

One idea I have is to use D cells. Yeah regular D cells but I can get 10amp NIMH D cells and “smart chargers” where each bay charges the cells individually solving part of the problem of a massive array of batteries.

SO I need to start somewhere smaller and it would also be nice to avoid registration since I would prefer not to hand over my property to the state. (yeah you thought you actually owned your car ehh ? hehe :slight_smile:

SO I want to start small. Something where I PEDAL. Something bicycle sized. for starters lets figure 30mile range. 55mph speed.

What I am looking to figure out first is this. There are 2 ways I can pedal. I can PHYSICALLY pedal and use the Electric Motor in unison. the Electric motor would allow me to pedal at much higher gear ratio’s

OR I could pedal an alternator and use the POWER from that to “add juice” back into the battery pack.

Here are the pro’s and con’s that I am able to see assuming either is feasible.

With the Physical Pedal contribution I reduce the actual load on the Electric motor and I reduce the mass of the vehicle (smaller battery no alternator or charger on board). This would also allow me to MOVE with NO electric power if that became needed (albeit at a very low speed)

I can pedal in excess of 10-15mph constantly and I have gone over 25mph but obviously for only short bursts. SO will my addition be enough?

The other route is an alternator. First can I even pedal one? (I guess I will have to try it and see what happens)

Advantages are that I can pedal the SAME speed no matter the conditions or speed of travel. Another advantage is when I am at a light I can keep pedaling continuing to charge the batteries. Laws of conservation say I can not pedal enough to prevent battery depletion otherwise I would be able to simply PEDAL at 55mph with no E motor if that were possible, clearly its not but it should greatly extend my range and since its REQUIRED that I pedal its a bicycle and avoids regulation and registration (though limits where I can drive it) IT ALSO should make it small enough that I can AFFORD to build the damned thing :slight_smile:

I have two of these Electric Scooters things. I figure they do 12 or so mph even with my 400pounds on them (I am a big critter 6’3") They run on leads (those sealed batts you can get at radioshack I am pretty sure)

I would want to use those if possible. maybe a test rig to see if I can pedal at 20mph and have them boost me to 30mph and see if I can sustain that. Maybe I can use BOTH of them Double the tire size you double the speed but halve the torque so double the motors. ?? No idea just a thought. They are two speed so I am hoping that means 12/24volt (got to dig them out and see what makes them go)

So I could make the speed control a simple two button affair. 2 12v packs. in parallel for low speed high torque and in series for high speed cruising. this would also evenly deplete all the cells and eliminate the need for an expensive controller.

For the alternator path I would also keep is simple. I would use an inverter to feed the battery chargers. The only downside is that a lot of power will likely be wasted IE producing more than the chargers will use. I have no idea really will have to see how it works out.

Suggestions? ANYTHING at all that might be helpful. I just ordered the How to build an EV book from amazon (got it for $15 :slight_smile: but I doubt its going to be that useful to me since I believe it focuses on Conversions well outside my budget right now. Until I can afford to build something that can go 70miles drop dead minimum at 50-55mph its not even worth me trying IE the time to recoup savings would be effectively infinite right now unless I could use it for commuting (I drive 54 miles ONE way)

BUT I WANT to build an EV. I think its SO damned important. SO I want to go short range small scale and CHEAP CHEAP CHEAP. something to goto the mall with or the movies or to the grocery store etc…

Let me know what you all think.

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I hear ya there an am in the same boat with trying to find cheaper ways to get to work when it is usually an hour away one way travel at highway speeds. Sure walking and bycicling are great for short distances of a few miles maybe even 5 max but at some point those just will not do.

Other thoughts for your vehicle or questions, are you planning on using it in snowy or bad weather?

My eventually work replacement vehicle? YES the little pedal powered EV. Does not matter. I plan it to be “open” cockpit at first so only warm sunny weather :slight_smile: I JUST want an EV.

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[QUOTE=nerys;1772]My eventually work replacement vehicle? YES the little pedal powered EV. Does not matter. I plan it to be “open” cockpit at first so only warm sunny weather :slight_smile: I JUST want an EV.[/QUOTE]

sounds like a motor cycle is best for you then…

even a motorcycle is too big too expensive and you need to register and inspect it. I want to start even simpler. Pedal Powered EV Hybrid.

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Even if you’re 400lbs of Incredible Hulk grade muscle I think you’re going to have huge problems overcoming drag at 55. It’d probably take some kind of an aeroshell, maybe an aeroshell on a recombinant bike so you could lay back and present a smaller cross section to the wind.

Well it will be a good way to losse weight. I have done 50mph going down hill the drag is not “that bad” at least compared to say a car :slight_smile:

So I just need “just” enough electric motor to allow me to sustain such a rate. I know I can not pedal 50mph and I know I can not afford an EV motor to push me 50mph but I am hoping both together …

90% of the travel will be at round 35-40mph but I want to be able to hit 50-55mph even if only for 5-6 miles. (would allow me to jump on I95 for the short jaunt to the mall) and it would be impressive enough a feat to garner some EV attention.

YES I do eventually plan to install an aeroshell but thats gonna take some work and be expensive. Not worth the expense till I know it will work in practice.

Sadly not 400 pounds of hulk. Maybe 275 pounds of “medium grade” hulk and 125 pounds of just fat :frowning:

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Maybe all you need is an electric moped then.

Well now were getting expensive again (moped) its also no where near fast enough and even if I could afford one I never saw one that would handle my mass all to well :slight_smile: Plus I am going to use NIMH batteries. I need to start off small to see if my multi D cell array and consumer charger idea even works :slight_smile:

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O.K., I’ve got nothing :frowning:

while building it… loose weight, as they say… the best modification to anything is weight reduction…