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Old 03-31-2006, 01:30 PM   #21
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I hope I'm wrong as

I hope I'm wrong as well.

I'll later be publishing an article that delves into the subject with more depth(still only scratching the surface, long as it is!), including but not limited to documented smear campaigns against the EV on part of the oil and auto industry, artificially inflating projected production costs on part of the auto industry, funding of anti-EV organizations, flat out refusal to offer the vehicles to willing buyers, and even some anti-EV legal action from the Bush/Clinton administrations.

The fight against the EV is real and documented. Historical fact. Not conspiracy theory.

The theory comes in when determining WHY it was being done.

Doing a cost analysis and finding EVs bring less revenue than gas cars and have reduced profits as a result is one explanation, the obvious lost revenue to the oil industry from decreased gas consumption is another, there's also the argument that the big industries will fear the decentalization that the EV would bring with their simplicity and longevity, among others. These motives aren't provable as the industry hasn't explicitly stated their real motive, and has continued to falsely cite 'not enough range', 'people don't want them', or the famous 'not fast enough'. What is provable is the ACTIONS the oil industry, auto industry, and government have taken to stifle the EV, with no rational reason for their actions. Try to find an explanation from there, and it will drive you crazy. The benefits of this technology to the public are so blatantly obvious!
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Old 04-03-2006, 06:29 AM   #22
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The biggest obstacle

I think the biggest obstacle to EVs is insurance, without which (at least here in Massachusetts), a car cannot be registered. From what I've read, it's difficult to get insurance for EVs converted from cars and trucks.

It's hard to know whether this insurance difficulty is part of a conspiracy, or whether it's just good business practice. You have to wonder though, since you see so many tricked-out, pimped gas rides out there. Those contraptions are more dangerous (and dangerously driven) than any EV.

There are several websites offering EV kits, especially for Chevy S10s and Metros. Most of these use low tech, lead acid batteries, conventional motors and cotntrollers. someone should put together a kit with all of the go-far goodies like lithium batteries and electroncally commutated motors.

But even if they did, why would I buy one if I wouldn't be able to insure, register and drive it?
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Old 04-03-2006, 07:25 AM   #23
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conversion

That's why adding a small electric motor to a regular car is a good solution - you don't get stuck with pure electric which in the NE area is pricing anyway unlike the west coast where they pay 1/5 the price for a KWH and you don't get the hassels at registration and insurance time. Gas powered electric assisted car. The reality is any electric vehicle that relies on a high electrical power battery is not going to be cost effective with the present battery technology. You only have to do the math and price some components to realize that. You are better off getting a small electric motor and adding it to a bicycle.
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Old 04-03-2006, 01:55 PM   #24
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Quote:I think the biggest

Quote:
I think the biggest obstacle to EVs is insurance, without which (at least here in Massachusetts), a car cannot be registered. From what I've read, it's difficult to get insurance for EVs converted from cars and trucks.
Indeed. IMO, the insurance industry is mostly a government-subsidized scam anyway.

But it is certainly NOT the biggest obsticile to EVs in general. A mass produced EV by major automaker wouldn't have such difficulties.

Quote:
It's hard to know whether this insurance difficulty is part of a conspiracy, or whether it's just good business practice.
Neither. Insurance companies generally don't like touching what they are unfamiliar with, given that there is no generally accepted rate to maximize profits for one off and converted cars.

If you want to insure an EV, there are a few places to look, however. Allstate has been known to insure EVs, but your best bet might be to go to someone who insures classic and custom cars, like Hagerty.

Quote:
You have to wonder though, since you see so many tricked-out, pimped gas rides out there. Those contraptions are more dangerous (and dangerously driven) than any EV.
An EV will be roughly as difficult to insure, assuming above cars are racetrack ready.

Quote:
There are several websites offering EV kits, especially for Chevy S10s and Metros. Most of these use low tech, lead acid batteries, conventional motors and cotntrollers. someone should put together a kit with all of the go-far goodies like lithium batteries and electroncally commutated motors.
Only problem with the go far kit is price.

Without automotive size production of batteries, management systems, and AC motors/inverters, the only ones that would be able to afford such are those who would simply pay someone to build the car for them.

Quote:
But even if they did, why would I buy one if I wouldn't be able to insure, register and drive it?
It's not as difficult as it appears. There are thousands of operating EVs in the U.S. The most important thing is having a title for the car. Work from there.

Quote:
That's why adding a small electric motor to a regular car is a good solution - you don't get stuck with pure electric which in the NE area is pricing anyway unlike the west coast where they pay 1/5 the price for a KWH and you don't get the hassels at registration and insurance time. Gas powered electric assisted car.
The downside is, you now have two propulsion systems to maintain, one gas and one electric. This increases maintenance costs and cancels any financial benefit from going pure EV.

Quote:
The reality is any electric vehicle that relies on a high electrical power battery is not going to be cost effective with the present battery technology. You only have to do the math and price some components to realize that.
It's not technology. It's production volume.

We have companies producing all sorts of different battery sizes for computers, portable electronics, ect. The problem is, they aren't producing similar sizes large enough for a car and in volume enough to bring prices to reasonable levels.

Why?

No one is mass producing highway capable electric cars.

Mass production of lithium ion batteries for automotive application would bring prices to $250/kWh. NiMH, $150/kWh.

Get below $300/kWh, and a mass market EV with 200+ miles range becomes viable. A 50 kWh pack for a 250 wh/mile midsize car at $300/kWh would cost $15,000. Certainly doable for a $25,000-30,000 midsize car. Get down to $150/kWh, and $10,000 lnog range highway capable EVs could be reality.

A shame an oil company is sitting on that NiMH battery patent. Even more of a shame the automakers refuse to touch EVs, as lithium ion not only has double the specific capacity of NiMH, but is catching up to NiMH in mass production costs. Without production for automotive volume, prices stay high.
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Old 04-03-2006, 02:11 PM   #25
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battery costs

Quote:
Mass production of lithium ion batteries for automotive application would bring prices to $250/kWh. NiMH, $150/kWh.
Get below $300/kWh, and a mass market EV with 200+ miles range becomes viable. A 50 kWh pack for a 250 wh/mile midsize car at $300/kWh would cost $15,000. Certainly doable for a $25,000-30,000 midsize car. Get down to $150/kWh, and $10,000 lnog range highway capable EVs could be reality.
I paid $114 for a KWh of high output high quality SLA and it still didn't last long enough - 1800 miles and the batteries are apparently at half capacity already. The only way they will become more cost effective is when gas prices get even higher as they are now becoming.

The new news is that the new Li-Ion nano tech cell production is going into full production and they say that they will be making EV batteries also.
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Old 04-03-2006, 06:54 PM   #26
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Quote:I paid $114 for a KWh

Quote:
I paid $114 for a KWh of high output high quality SLA and it still didn't last long enough - 1800 miles and the batteries are apparently at half capacity already.
a) What kind of battery, brand and model, was it?
b) What kind of charger did you use?
c) What kind of charging algorithm did you use?
d) Did you use regulators?
e) Was this your first ever battery pack?
f) How much range did you have and what was your typical daily range usage?

Examples abound of conversions which have been able to go 20,000+ miles on a lead acid battery pack before it was replaced(with roughly 70-80% of deliverable capacity). In theory, my own conversion will be able to go up to 80,000 miles on its pack if I keep the discharge around 30%, but the data from the EV list suggests to expect around 40,000 miles, mostly from a combination of long range AND small daily discharges. Generally, AGMs should not be regularly discharged below 50%, or they won't last more than 200-300 cycles. At 20-30%, they can last 2,000-2,500 cycles.

With sealed lead acid batteries, you can not skimp on anything related to charging them, or they won't last long.

Also, most first time EV users kill their pack outright not properly caring for it in the case of lead acid batteries, often times not even realizing it(battery management could prevent this).

As far as advanced batteries go, they are proven. Southern California Edison's fleet of EVs equipped with NiMH batteries have had only 6 module failures in over 3 million miles of operation. RAV4 EVs with NiMH are approaching 150,000 miles on the same battery pack with yet no pack degredation. Before they were crushed, numerous EV1s lasted over 40,000 miles on their NiMH pack with no degredation.

Quote:
The only way they will become more cost effective is when gas prices get even higher as they are now becoming.
Most conversions using lead acid batteries(and properly cared for) break even with their gas counterparts at under $1.50/gallon, some as low as $.80/gallon, factoring in battery replacement. Adjusted for inflation, gas has not been that cheap very often. However, this will only happen if the batteries are charged properly, managed with voltage regulation and thermal regulation systems, and checked by the car owner regularly. Skimp on one of those things and you likely lose the advantage with a very costly mistake.

Quote:
The new news is that the new Li-Ion nano tech cell production is going into full production and they say that they will be making EV batteries also.
Unless they will be producing enough for 10,000+ cars per year, don't expect them to be affordable. Thundersky is producing enough batteries for a few thousand EVs per year, and their prices are around $600/kWh, down to $450 if you can get with a group and buy in bulk. Larger production volume brings prices to affordable levels, but that takes mass production of EVs, something a small business will never accomplish given current politics in place.

Thundersky's original production run was filled with bad batteries, but their new runs have apparantly kept up with their manufacturing specs. In theory, this would allow 100,000-150,000 mile pack lifes following their charge/discharge cycle statistics.
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Old 04-03-2006, 07:10 PM   #27
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batteries

Hawker Genesis 26ah x 3 using separate chargers for final top off and a bulk 36 volt 20 amp charger to get them close to peak charge then finished with 1 amp chargers that charge to 14.9 volts and then drop back to 13.5 volts. Powercheq modules added after the first year to maintain proper balance on charge and discharge and charge after that. Typical range was about 20-25 miles using about 20 ah of the 26ah capacity. This comes out to about 100 cycles give or take a few. Batteries were recharged after each run and float charged between uses. I have more of them that have not been cycled yet but my concern is that they are aging. The Thundersky cells would have been a better deal life wise but the price was too high and they are easily damaged with a simple overload and have very critical operating temperatures.
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:59 PM   #28
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Quote:Typical range was

Quote:
Typical range was about 20-25 miles using about 20 ah of the 26ah capacity.
There is your problem. 20 AH used out of 26 AH available is a 77% discharge!

AGM batteries are not meant to be chronically discharged passed 50% on a daily basis. It's ok to discharge 70-100% maybe once a week or so for a long trip, but not for the bulk of your EV usage. Otherwise they will not last long at all.

With a 20-25 mile range to 77% discharge, your ideal pack size should be increased to enough where you would have 67-83 miles range to 100% discharge.

Your commute would have then been discharging them to roughly 30%, allowing them in excess of 1,000 cycles.

This is not feasible for most bicycles mind you(unless you're willing to enclose the bicycle with a faring to minimize aero drag), but it is perfectly reasonable for a car or a motorcycle with a custom-built aerodynamic faring.

Due to pricing of Hawkers, such an endeavor would be better suited to larger and cheaper batteries, perhaps Exide Orbitals, rated at 55 AH at the 20 hour rate and with 95 minutes at the 25 amp rate. They retail at $100 each. A Geo Metro sized EV with a 336V pack of them could easily get 50 miles range to 100% discharge without any special attention to aerodynamics, consuming roughly 200 wh/mile and seeing 29 ah per batery at EV rates. With attention to aerodynamics, 60-80 miles consuming 160 wh/mile, and slighly increased capacity due to lower current draws(I take it you know about Peukert's effect).
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Old 04-05-2006, 02:52 AM   #29
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discharge

Peukert is very low on Hawkers - problem was that the capacity was not dropping at all then suddenly it did. It is not possible to run bigger batteries - scooter is at 145 lbs already - I did run shorter trips and logged the more recent ones. Just not practical to carry more battery weight. I got the Hawkers for a great deal which is why they were the way to go - when I needed 150 amps they put out.

BTW toecutter you seem to know quite a bit about EVs.
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Old 04-06-2006, 06:12 PM   #30
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Peukerts might be low on

Peukerts might be low on Hawkers, but it is still sufficiently high that your discharge rate will heavily affect your capacity.

The Peukert's exponent on the Exide Orbitals is even smaller than that of most Hawkers, however even then at EV rates they only deliver about 60% of their 20 hour rating.


My knowledge of EVs is mostly academic. I'm still building my first conversion, and by no means do I consider myself an expert. I have studied the subject quite extensively, on the other hand.
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