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View Poll Results: What should Ben's Next Big Project be?
Hybrid/Tribrid Diesel/Electric Pickup Truck 12 44.44%
Performance EV / Long-distance Documentary-ready Car 9 33.33%
The Family Car 14 51.85%
The NEXT Cycle 1 3.70%
The XR-3 0 0%
Something completely different (but let me know what!) 2 7.41%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 27. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-20-2011, 08:30 PM   #11 (permalink)
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A performance EV in a family car body would be very "practical".

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Old 07-20-2011, 10:04 PM   #12 (permalink)
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How about a hybrid family car? You could take a 4WD vehicle (such as a Subaru) and keep the front axle gasoline, but disconnect the rear axle from the transfer case and connect it instead to a 7" or 8" motor to make it electric. A 96v system (eight 12v batteries) would be relatively small, and give perhaps 25 - 30 miles of range.

When using just gasoline, it would be turning, but probably not wasting much compared to the transfer case.
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Old 07-20-2011, 11:00 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Sounds like most of the replies are for the truck or the family car, both of which I would be leaning towards.

I guess I would like to try to keep my wife's car running as long as we can. We'll have to take it in to the shop soon and see what it takes to keep it running for a while longer.

Since I started the diesel pickup project a while back, at least in terms of having the second truck frame and diesel engine.

That's been my "back-burner" project for too long.

I still don't know exactly what to do for the wife's car. I think I'll just try to buy time until I can get that figured out.

If the "Green Machine Experiment" film ever happens, that would most likely be NEXT summer. By then, I might actually know what I am doing with electric cars....

I like the idea of working on the truck partly because the truck is the vehicle I have been using the most lately. Any improvements to that would help. I also like that I could do it in steps. Maybe diesel conversion, then aero, then hybrid mode, something like that.

And what I would want to do for it for a hybrid would be a parallel plug-in hybrid setup. I would want to be able to run on either electric, diesel, or both. I think in-town on electric only would be great, with diesel/bio/veggie available for long distance and towing.

Batteries and motor could go in the back of the truck. I've seen plenty of EV truck conversions with batteries where the gas tank, exhaust, and spare tire go under the bed. On a hybrid, the gas tank and exhaust would still be there, but I wonder how many batts I could cram where the spare tire would go....

I'd love to do regenerative braking, but I am only really familiar with permanent magnet and series-wound motors. I can get a big series-wound motor for free, but have no idea where I could get a BIG PM motor. Not having regen wouldn't be a deal-breaker, but it would be nice to have if I could. There's a fleet of diesel/electric school busses a couple of miles from my house. I think those are all "depleting hybrids" they just use the power from the plug-in batteries until it runs out, then they revert to just diesel after that.
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Old 07-21-2011, 09:18 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I talked with TomG and he says the Mars (now Motenergy) motors are just about as big of a PM motor as you'll find.

Also, I was snooping around CL the other day and found this. I called on it as a viable replacement for the Paseo, but it was automatic. Perhaps a nice (pretty cheap IMO, BB is ~$5500) car for the family.

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Old 07-21-2011, 08:40 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I went with family car because you mentioned the Prius. There was one for sale in my area not too long ago for $1500 in good shape that had a problem with the battery pack. I've got a bunch of good Prius modules and could probably have figured out how to get it going, and I'm sure you could find a similar deal in your area. Also the Enginer kits start at $2,000 so that would be a great combo....
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Old 07-21-2011, 11:32 PM   #16 (permalink)
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i would think learning to work on the wifes car so you are not taking it to the shop would be step one,

next the pickup, i like the diesel electric idea, if you could use a free wheeling clutch like saabs had years ago. your electric moter could be drive side of the trans and run as electric only, without spinning the whole crankshaft etc. with regen braking, and as generator.

over all put the most energy into what ever will save you the most; if the truck drives 15 miles a month don't do anything with it unless that would help you replace the mileage driven by another vehicle.

i think the new vehicles (xr3, or long range performance ev) are not replacing or up grading anything. just making a new car so you can drive it more than you would have driven without it.

i think a prius with a bad battery pack, body damage, blown head gasket etc. would be perfect. you can start with the best thing going and build from there. every one here is really proud when they beat a prius mpg. so even if you just get back to stock you have saved a bunch of money. and can probably do better enough with your driving skills alone to basjoose us all! and then upgrade from there

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