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Old 01-04-2016, 02:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Smile Firefly Electric Conversion

Hiya, all. I've been collecting EV parts for a few years now, and finally, a month back, I bought a high mileage '98 firefly with a blow trans for cheap to do the conversion on.

Here she is:





A little bit of rust, but nothing major:




Interior is in damned good condition. Why is beyond me:





A lot of highway KMs on it:


Best of all, it has intermittent wipers!


Tired engine:





Came with some shiny new parts on it though, that I will save for my Purple '95:



Well, there she is.

I'll post pics of my progress later. Don't expect me to finish it in the next week. I'll putter along on this as I get time.

Glad to be finally doing it, though!

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Old 01-05-2016, 01:27 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Topoff (RIP) - '92 Geo Metro LSi
90 day: 48.54 mpg (US)

'91 Miata - '91 Mazda Miata
90 day: 27.11 mpg (US)

'86 Fiero GT - '86 Pontiac Fiero GT

Purple Penny Pincher - '95 Pontiac Firefly Base
90 day: 43.68 mpg (US)

Jett-Black - '01 Volkswagen Jetta
90 day: 39.32 mpg (US)

Firefly EV - '98 Pontiac Firefly EV
90 day: 107.65 mpg (US)
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Cleaned up the engine & bay. Pressure washer wouldn't start, so had to do without. Started disconnecting hoses and wiring:


Yoink!


De-iced.


That was done in the first few days of having it...then xmas/life got in the way.
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Old 01-05-2016, 09:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
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CM400E - '81 Honda CM400E
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Nice progress. Can we hear a bit more about the parts you've collected and plan to use for the conversion?
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Old 01-05-2016, 01:45 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Topoff (RIP) - '92 Geo Metro LSi
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'86 Fiero GT - '86 Pontiac Fiero GT

Purple Penny Pincher - '95 Pontiac Firefly Base
90 day: 43.68 mpg (US)

Jett-Black - '01 Volkswagen Jetta
90 day: 39.32 mpg (US)

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Exclamation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daox View Post
Nice progress. Can we hear a bit more about the parts you've collected and plan to use for the conversion?
Horsepower is all you guys care about, isn't it?

Well, here ya go...here's my motor:
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:03 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Topoff (RIP) - '92 Geo Metro LSi
90 day: 48.54 mpg (US)

'91 Miata - '91 Mazda Miata
90 day: 27.11 mpg (US)

'86 Fiero GT - '86 Pontiac Fiero GT

Purple Penny Pincher - '95 Pontiac Firefly Base
90 day: 43.68 mpg (US)

Jett-Black - '01 Volkswagen Jetta
90 day: 39.32 mpg (US)

Firefly EV - '98 Pontiac Firefly EV
90 day: 107.65 mpg (US)
Thanks: 35
Thanked 209 Times in 152 Posts
Talking Parts

Just joking!

Here's my main motor:

It's an 8" Advanced DC sep-ex, presumably out of some form of electric forklift. Weighs about 120lbs.

And here's a possible alternative that I picked up off of Mechman600 a while back at a good price:

Which is a 7.25" Prestolite sep-ex traction motor, out of a Schaeff lift truck. Was in Mechman600's Electric Booger for a while.

I've got 10KWH worth of LiFePO4 batteries, the only thing I bought new for the project:


The only thing I accomplished on the project during the xmas/new-years holidays was the negotiation of a used controller at a good price:


Otherwise, I've got bits and bobs like contactors, fuses, and what have you, and I'm waiting on a package with a DC-DC converter, breakers, more contactors (guess you can't have too many), and the cooling kit to go with the controller.

Still figuring out what I'll be doing about a vacuum pump and a real charger, but I have time for that while I work on the rest.
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Topoff (RIP) - '92 Geo Metro LSi
90 day: 48.54 mpg (US)

'91 Miata - '91 Mazda Miata
90 day: 27.11 mpg (US)

'86 Fiero GT - '86 Pontiac Fiero GT

Purple Penny Pincher - '95 Pontiac Firefly Base
90 day: 43.68 mpg (US)

Jett-Black - '01 Volkswagen Jetta
90 day: 39.32 mpg (US)

Firefly EV - '98 Pontiac Firefly EV
90 day: 107.65 mpg (US)
Thanks: 35
Thanked 209 Times in 152 Posts
Thumbs up Testing the controller...

Being paranoid, I couldn't sleep well without knowing if the controller worked or not when it arrived a week or so back, so within a day or two, I was hacking it together to test it out.

First thing I learned, it wouldn't turn on without the interface module plugged in:

(Remind me not to loose that thing.)
It powered up just fine, which was a great start.

Of course, it threw error codes about the contactor. So I had to hook one of those up. And I hooked 12v up to the contactor and the controller...but it still threw the code. After trying another contactor, which didn't make a difference, I decided to try 24v to the contactor and controller, and viola! I got the green light. Litterally!

The interface module showed that I was able to control the output voltage, which I confirmed:




But I wanted a load, any kind of load. Well, ok, it's a tiny load, but it's a load. In the top left corner:



That poor little 10-watt, 12-volt bulb somehow survived having 24v across it for a second at a time. Sure, it went super-nova, but hey...it proved that the controller works.

So, yeah, the controller was my latest acquisition. It popped up for sale just after I bought my donor car. I'm pleased with my purchase and the price, and it's versatility(Voltage range, amp range) opens up new options, which I appreciate. The only thing it doesn't do that I was originally hoping for is regen braking, since I have Sep-Ex motors, but I'll just have to live without.
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Old 01-05-2016, 02:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Very nice!
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:41 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubby79 View Post
Horsepower is all you guys care about, isn't it?

Well, here ya go...here's my motor:
That looks like the motor from my clothes dryer ...
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stubby79 View Post
I've got 10KWH worth of LiFePO4 batteries, the only thing I bought new for the project:
So what voltage are you running? Since you already have the pack ..

Quote:
Otherwise, I've got bits and bobs like contactors, fuses, and what have you, and I'm waiting on a package with a DC-DC converter, breakers, more contactors (guess you can't have too many), and the cooling kit to go with the controller.
What have you fused the controller at? Do you have a part number on the fuse? I messed that part up and am looking for examples
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Old 01-05-2016, 07:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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It is great to see another Metro conversion in the works. I have converted several Metros and really like this choice of chassis. It was the king of mpg when it was an ICE, and it will be the king of miles per kW as an EV.

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conversion, electric, ev conversion, firefly, geo metro

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