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Old 04-25-2012, 10:12 AM   #981 (permalink)
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The ForkenSwift came out of hibernation a couple of weeks ago.

It sure is nice to have this little utility vehicle available for errands again - I've got quite a pile of cut brush that needs transporting to the city compost yard with the light utility trailer. It's already been pressed into service transporting ladders, saws, and lengths of eaves troughing, among other things.

Oh, and carrying my lazy ass around because it was brrrrr cold and a little rainy yesterday and I didn't feel like biking.

---

I trickled/topped up the pack once in February. (I parked it for winter storage with a full charge Dec. 15th, 2011)

I've done about 4 drive/charge cycles so far, and I can't say for sure, but the pack seems to have reduced capacity compared to last year (could just be my fading memory too). 20 km (12 mi) seems about the maximum useful range now.

Range may recover somewhat with a few more drive/charge cycles to "wake up" the batteries (at least this is what one expert with lots of experience with lead has told me in the past).

Doesn't really matter - I have a set of newer (but still used) batteries on the sidelines obtained last year that I'll put in the car soon.

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Old 06-19-2012, 11:18 AM   #982 (permalink)
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This is what I've used the car most for so far this year: many, many brush runs to the city compost yard. Parts of 2 trees came down in wind storms so far this year, plus thinning & preventive trimming.

The attendant at the compost yard gets a big laugh when the ForkenSwift shows up - he loves telling other people unloading their cars/trucks that it's electric.

The batteries have woken up nicely - I still haven't switched over to the new-to-me (but still used) pack. Yesterday I did 20 km without breaking a sweat, pulling the trailer. I figure 25 km would be easily doable without it.
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Latest mods test: 15 mods = 15% MPG improvement: A-B test, 2007 Honda Civic 1.8L, 5-speed
Ecodriving test:
Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown: Nissan Micra 1.6L



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Old 06-24-2013, 12:39 PM   #983 (permalink)
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Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

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Winter beater Metro - '00 Chevrolet Metro
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ForkenSwift rides again!

Yes, the wee electric beastie is back in business.

Before registering it this year, I fixed the transmission oil leak. No more couple of drips a day doing this to my parking spot, day after day. (It's extra embarassing having an EV that leaks oil.)



I also took all the battery cables off, cleaned & reinstalled them. A few were a little corroded. The batteries always seem to leak a tiny bit around the posts. I should try putting silicone on them to seal 'em up.

Fixed a slow leaking tire too. Leaky, leaky EV!

While tinkering under the hood, a high school kid stopped on his bicycle and wanted to talk about the car. He knew a bit about electric cars and thinks he and his buddies had even looked up the FS on the web at school. (For a good laugh, probably!)

He had seen a Volt up close at his job (Krown rust-prevention franchise), and found its quiet EV mode to be pretty cool.

The car goes into service this afternoon pulling its first trailer load of brush of the year to the compost yard!
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Latest mods test: 15 mods = 15% MPG improvement: A-B test, 2007 Honda Civic 1.8L, 5-speed
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Old 06-24-2013, 04:01 PM   #984 (permalink)
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Petroleum jelly aka Vaseline works well on battery posts to prevent corrosion.
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Old 06-24-2013, 10:22 PM   #985 (permalink)
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Excellent news!
It seems that our electric beasties are on opposite seasonal schedules. Yours is more of a summer "hauling stuff around" vehicle and mine more of a "I'm too wimpy to ride my motorcycle during the cold season" winter beater.
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Old 06-24-2013, 10:30 PM   #986 (permalink)
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Oh, if mine wasn't a rustbucket underneath, I'd probably use it in the winter too. Alas, subjecting it to just one more rust belt winter would land it in the junkyard for sure. (Not something you'd understand, I realize!)

So is the booger parked for the summer? I keep being reminded of your car because an MX3 showed up in town this spring... though painted orange and with a giant wing on the back.
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Latest mods test: 15 mods = 15% MPG improvement: A-B test, 2007 Honda Civic 1.8L, 5-speed
Ecodriving test:
Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown: Nissan Micra 1.6L



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Old 06-25-2013, 12:21 AM   #987 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
So is the booger parked for the summer? I keep being reminded of your car because an MX3 showed up in town this spring... though painted orange and with a giant wing on the back.
It is not officially parked quite yet. I still commute with it on rainy days (when I don't feel like riding the bike). It will be officially parked sometime in August when the insurance runs out. Then it will be all bike until the beginning of November when the bike's insurance runs out. Then the eBooger will again become king of the commute.

Giant wing? AMAZING. I need one of those. Maybe with some windmills hanging off it to generate power to charge the pack while I drive.
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Old 07-09-2013, 11:34 AM   #988 (permalink)
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Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

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ForkenSwift's next lease on life?

So... I have this idea...

I'm thinking that rather than fix up the rusty floor, firewall & underbits of the FS, I may just convert it into a pusher trailer for the Blackfly (or any other small vehicle).

Along the lines of Mr Sharkey's pusher trailer, but the reverse of what he did: ICE in the front, EV in the back...



Mr.Sharkey's Pusher Trailer

Winter project, 2013/14!

It would need more oomph though, considering power is barely adequate now. A pusher format would involve moving around an additional ~930 lbs (rough guesstimate).

- ForkenSwift (now) = 2070 lbs
- Trailerized ForkenSwift = 1150 lbs (est.)
- Blackfly = 1850 lbs
- Blackfly + ForkenSwifTrailer: 3000 lbs

Difference = 930 lbs
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Latest mods test: 15 mods = 15% MPG improvement: A-B test, 2007 Honda Civic 1.8L, 5-speed
Ecodriving test:
Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown: Nissan Micra 1.6L



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Old 07-09-2013, 01:32 PM   #989 (permalink)
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Excellent idea! All you will need for some more oomph is a bigger controller. If I recall, your motor is plenty big enough to handle much more than you are giving it now. Quite the opposite of mine!
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:00 PM   #990 (permalink)
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Yep - either a controller upgrade, or turbo contactor bypass like Ben did.

--

I keep seeing that searing orange MX-3 with the giant wing around town. I'm going to get a pic and post it in your thread one of these days...

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Latest mods test: 15 mods = 15% MPG improvement: A-B test, 2007 Honda Civic 1.8L, 5-speed
Ecodriving test:
Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown: Nissan Micra 1.6L



EcoModder
has launched a forum for the efficient new Mitsubishi Mirage
www.MetroMPG.com - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners
www.ForkenSwift.com - electric car conversion on a beer budget
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