Sunday, July 21, 2013

RETHINKING, REPLANNING, REWORKING, AND CLEANING UP

The DC-DC converter mounting turned out good and was out of the way but accessible; However the original battery placement was just out of place. I want to use the ledge below the DC-DC converter to mount relays and contactors but where I had the battery was wasting space. I had some thin aluminum sheet and decided to fabricate a bracket to bolt to the bottom of the DC-DC converter for the battery to sit on. This will free up the ledge below and make the battery much easier to get to.


BATTERY BRACKET FABRICATED

  
BATTERY BRACKET INSTALLED

When the motor was installed the cradle was not very level and although I attempted to level it, must not have found a good spot to run the 4 ft level across it. When the assembly was sitting on the level garage floor on the legs of the engine hoist, you could see that the motor was low on the outboard end. A good spot was found to run the 4 ft level across the cradle and the motor was rigged up, mounting bolts removed, and lifted up until it was level also. It ended up being an inch too low, so I went to Ace Hardware and picked up a piece of 1 inch square tubing to raise the mount up. After drilling the holes, the mount was reinstalled with the square tubing as a shim and the motor was finally level with the cradle.


LEVEL ACROSS MOTOR CRADLE

 
MOTOR NOW LEVEL WITH CRADLE

There are 2/0 cables running from the front battery pack through the tunnel to the rear of the car and I have been spending some time under the car making sure they are attached securely. The end in the front trunk area had a Pack Tracker CT around the cable where the terminal was crimped on, so I had to cut the terminal off to remove it.


PACK TRACKER CT REMOVED

There are just so many loose ends to tie up I am a bit overwhelmed at times. The next project on the list is to hook up the relays on the AVC2 to disable the car when it is charging from the J1772 plug but there are also relays on the Zivan Charger, so I could actually disable the main battery pack anytime the charger was running using that one. That would give me protection from the car moving when charging from the 220 plug as well. I have some relays that were used on the original build and have some Gigavac GX12 contactors to pick up next week so that will give me some components to work with once I decide how to wire everything.

I have been playing with the bad HiPower cells that arrived with voltages less that 1 volt and have one that holds 20 AH but goes strait to 3.65 volts when you are charging, then starts the constant current phase, goes immediately to 3.29 or so during the cool down, then to 2.65 volts when discharging and goes right to the constant current phase. I bought an Autocraft 1/12/75 Amp battery charger to get the 12 volt batteries I was using charged up enough for the PowerLab 8 to work. It kept faulting with a message that the voltage was raising too quickly because they had discharged too much. My old 12 volt battery charger finally bit the dust and I did not have any way to get them charged back up enough to do regen charging with the PowerLab 8.

Sunday was spent catching up on yard work and as luck would have it, when I hooked the new 12 volt charger up to charge the batteries, the meter did not work, so I had to take it back to trade for another one. The store where I bought it was out and I had to drive to another store in a near by town to pick it up. No problem, it was a nice day and I had the top down on the Miata so the extra drive was a bit relaxing. On the way home I stopped at Buckeye Lake Brewery and had a pint of their fresh IPA. They also make root beer and I was going to pick up a grower of it but they were out. They only brew small batches of the root beer, so you have to be there at just the right time or they are usually sold out.

Upon arriving home, I cleaned up the 1970 John Deere 10 horse garden tractor I finished rebuilding last year. I had to do some battery cable repair and needed to use a shot of starter fluid to get it to start. Not sure if the battery wasn't charged enough to get enough fuel from the fuel pump or if the carburetor needs adjusted but it runs great once it started. 

I tend to leave a trail of tools when working on the Fiero as I hate to put a tool away until I know I am finished with it. Usually I am working on a couple different projects at a time because of waiting for parts so after awhile, I have to stop and just clean up the garage. All of the tools have been cleaned and returned to their place in the tool box, the floor swept, work bench cleaned, and all of the trash cans emptied, so I am ready to start fresh next week.

My wife and I finished out the day by taking my son and his girlfriend out to dinner for her birthday. It  is always good spending time with them and really completed an enjoyable day..

Only a couple weeks until EVCCON so hope to see some of you there.

Thanks for visiting,

Randy
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