EV Projects

This page is to keep track of several Electric Vehicle projects that I'm working on. The goal is to become very familiar with the inner workings of Electric Vehicles. By rebuilding the EV components a better understanding of their function and repairability can be established. The charger and motor control repairs can be very expensive. Also, with gas prices so high, it would be great to drive something I can charge in the garage and skip gas stations altogether.

06/07/09 - I now have a blog of the work I do on my USE S10's.

07/31/04 - The first project is a Solectria battery charger borrowed from the San Jose EAA group. Right now the Solectria charger is disassembled. It's had one round of damaged parts replaced. On powerup, it popped those same parts again. Since this charger is just a high powered DC to DC converter, that is how debug will be approached. The other two are a 1205 and 1221 Curtis motor controls. The Curtis 1205 was purchased to see how they are constructed. It had only one fet out of 14 damaged. But oddly enough a copper bracket was missing that connects the six diodes to the rest of the circuitry. I may be able to jumper that area, as the unit is ready for testing at this point. You can see a similar copper bracket in the picture of the Curtis 1221. The Curtis 1221 is in debug for a customer who's unit went up in smoke while driving his EV around town. The picture of the 1221 shows where most of the damage is. A few fets and diodes are toasted. The final project is a Raptor 600 motor control. This unit is suppose to work, but has some kind of intermittent problems. It was purchased complete with the tach sensor and throttle control. This unit has many programmable features. I have only looked inside and not started any debug yet. A web search has not found replacement Curtis parts yet. Identifying the manufacturer of the fried components is half of the repair battle. Since these motor controls operate from 48 to 190 volts, I decided to use the battery packs from my robot to power them for testing. They are eight 24 volt NIMH packs. They can be plugged together in series to achieve any voltage needed for testing. In fact I plan to use them for testing the output of the charger when it gets finished as well. Updates will be posted as progress is made on these projects.