Sunday, May 12, 2013

WHERE'S THE JUICE

Thursday night I finally figured out how to modify the brackets to get the J1772 plug to be positioned in the center of the opening in the side of the Fiero. With a little cutting and grinding, it was time to get out the mig and weld the bracket to flange on the back of the passenger compartment. After flashing myself a couple of times, because of the close quarters, I was finally able to get the bracket welded into position. The engine compartment side was fairly easy to get to but to weld the back side, I had to go through the vent hole in the side of the quarter panel. Finally I was able to get into position, and the angle iron bracket was welded firmly in place. With the play in the bolt holes, and maybe a couple of shims on the J1772 connector, I will be able to get the plug perfectly centered in the opening. The welds aren't very pretty but I got good penetration and the bracket is tucked back in the fender where no one will ever see it when the car is finished.

J1772 BRACKET WELDED IN

Friday I went to radio shack in search of a 2.74 ohm resister for the J1772, but unfortunately they did not have one. I was however, able to pick up some wire for the pilot signal and a plastic bushing for the 220 plug conduit. I was unable to find any lugs for the #10 wire, so I will need to stop by the hardware store before I get started tomorrow. There is a lot of wiring to do before I can put the motor cradle back in the car, and I noticed that the 12 volt wiring needs cleaned up. There was some rust where the 12 volt battery used to be, and I should probably cut all of the rust out so I can weld in a new piece of metal. The good news is, this is the only rust I have found on the whole car.

 RUST WHERE 12V BATTERY WAS

RUST IN 12V CONNECTIONS

When I got up Saturday I had a headache, and felt kind of rough. I headed out to find a terminal and some connectors for the #10 wire so I could get the charging circuit hooked up. My first stop was the hardware store to pick up some crimp connectors and new bolts to mount the J1772 plug. I thought maybe they would have a terminal strip but they did not. Millersport Hardware is located in close proximity to Buckeye Lake so I stopped at the marina hoping they would have the Blue Sea terminal block, but sadly they did not carry them. They did carry the Blue Sea 12V single terminal, but I required the one with multiple connections. Off to Buckeye Outdoors, who did have the terminal strip. Bingo, I was back in business.

The next step was drilling the mounting holes for the J1772, and painting all of the brackets.

J1772 BRACKET PAINTED & MOUNTED

Next was to decide how to mount the terminal strip. I had some electrical boxes and started sorting through them to try to find one that will work. I found a ledge that is out of the way and started test fitting different boxes and finally found on that that will work.

  ELECTRICAL BOX FOR TERMINAL
 .
The placement of the box will give me short runs for the cables coming from the J1772 and 220v plugs, and I can run the cable going to the charger through the opening where the computer used to be mounted. This will allow me to route it through the opening to where the charger will be mounted.

COMPUTER COMPARTMENT

Sunday was Mother's Day, so I went to my parents house for a cook out. I felt bad because my wife had work, and could not go. She works for a flower distributor that supplies Meijer with flowers, and the holiday is a reasonably big revenue day for them. Fortunately, my son took her to dinner after she got off work, so she ended up having a pretty good day anyway.

I didn't go out to work on the Fiero until later in the evening, but I was able to figure out how to mount the junction box for the J1772 and 220v plug. I wanted to be able to get the cover off of the box, so I am going to make a stand to hold it off the ledge a little and mount it to the firewall. The firewall is at an angle, making the process similar to forcing a round peg in a square hole. I ordered 2.74k ohm resisters off of ebay, and since I am going to wait until I get them to wire up the J1772 plug, I began wiring up the 220v plug. Using some rubber gasket material, I created a shim to go inside the conduit to minimize the clearance between the plug and the walls of the conduit. After wiring the plug and putting a piece of shrink tubing around the bottom of the wires, I put the gasket material in the conduit and inserted the plug - tightening down the set screws. The gasket shim was an excellent fit, and the set screws held the plug firmly in the conduit. I fished the wire through the hole, tightened up the conduit nut and installed a plastic bushing. Everything meshed well and the final product was nice and solid.

220 VOLT PLUG FINAL MOUNTING

BACK SIDE OF 220 VOLT PLUG

220 VOLT CONNECTION IN BOX

 The car is not going to be done in time for EVCCON, so when Jack ran a special, knocking $70 off the price - I decided to go ahead and purchase my pass. I considered not going this year and spending the money on the car, but I met so many great people the last two years that I decided to attend.

Also, there are a few of the Manzanita Micro PFC 50 chargers left for $1500. These are never used units purchased in 2010 that will be fully tested before shipped. If anyone is interested, shoot me an email at randy@cz-ev.com and I will hook you up with the guy who bought them.

-Randy


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