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Old 06-26-2013, 01:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Serial Hybrid F-150

Lets start off with a few things I know.

I know energy form conversions are inefficient. Do it as little as possible for fewer losses.

I like A/C drive systems for efficiency.

I've been soldering and playing with electronics since I was a kid, but I don't understand it as thoroughly as others I've seen here. I really enjoyed playing with PIC AXE Microcontrollers, and I don't like analog. And Analog, very tricky analog, is what power electronics are all about.

I know that what I'm suggesting is not a great idea from an efficiency/green standpoint... Right now. Batteries that would do what I need simply don't exist.

I have several goals:

Be Battery Ready. Everything in place to drop in a real battery technology, if it ever comes to pass...

Be redundant. Motive force should come from a place that doesn't cause a total failure of the vehicle if something goes boom.

Be reliable (which redundancy helps with). Electric drive is better than thousands of impact loads per minute. It's not about the smooth ride, but that it isn't abuse to itself.

Be easier to work on than a regular vehicle. It's way easier to rebuild a small generator motor than it is to rebuild a multi-cylinder engine that weighs more than I do.

Be modular. So, I can swap out gens and fuel types. Gas. Diesel. CNG. WMO. Propane. If an engine goes down, I just drive slower until I fix or replace it. I drive slow anyway most of the time.

What isn't on this list?

Any of the typical goals that people have when they're switching to electric. So, one has to throw away the pre-conceptions of what they think I want and look at this from a new perspective.

Would I prefer a battery electric? Yes, of course I would. But it just plain doesn't exist. Even if I were a billionaire with nothing better to do with my money, there is no battery. It hasn't been invented yet. A lot of really expensive wishful thinking about LiFePo, but there is nothing that will get me 800 miles on a charge. And that which pretends to do it costs way too much, among other problems.

I've already got a lead on a WarP 9 installed in an F-150. What little feedback I've gotten so far is telling me to go kill myself before I do this, it would be a better idea. I need to sort out how much of that it green elitist zealotry, and how much is real fact.

I know quite well how great Diesels are. That's why I've owned nothing with a spark plug for nearly a decade. I'm ready to take another step. I'm no stranger to the wrench, but my current living situation negates major engine work, and frankly, I'm getting too old for this sh!t.

I'll keep the tires tall and skinny. 35in is my target, but I'm willing to to compromise a little. Vehicle will see a lot of dirt road service, but I'm not a redneck douche. I just like the lower RPM and the higher seat. My vehicle is not a penis extension.

I just don't want to do things the same old backwards way anymore. I know its not a "best practice" objective, but it's the only possibility. I won't own something with a giant engine directly mechanical driven again. I'll walk before I do that stupid crap again. 50 miles is a long walk...

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Old 06-26-2013, 03:11 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Interesting!

I take it you've got the funds for the aforementioned experiment?

Also: if you're going serial, I'd seriously consider adding a small battery pack so you can do some of your driving without running the genset, or as an energy buffer. Of course, that part could be modular too.

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What little feedback I've gotten so far is telling me to go kill myself before I do this
PS: that's funny! I love to see a good project, so I wouldn't discourage you if you really want to try it. Of course, you'll probably wish you had before you're finished, but that's another issue entirely.
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Old 06-27-2013, 01:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
I take it you've got the funds for the aforementioned experiment?
I think it'll be cheaper than a 'real' conversion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Also: if you're going serial, I'd seriously consider adding a small battery pack so you can do some of your driving without running the genset, or as an energy buffer. Of course, that part could be modular too.
In having repeated this a few times, I've left out that detail by accident. I intend a regular car battery bank, because this is what they're made for. Large drain for short period of time, then idle/recharge. It'll exist mostly for acceleration. I mean for the generators to supply at-speed power.

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I love to see a good project, so I wouldn't discourage you if you really want to try it. Of course, you'll probably wish you had before you're finished, but that's another issue entirely.
If it isn't a contribution to knowledge then I may not do it. With so much hate for the idea, I may not bother.
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Old 06-27-2013, 05:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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There are two main issues I see, and you are probably aware of them.

1 Series hybrid (especially DIY) is probably going to be lossy, good chance that you will be farther ahead in terms of fuel consumption driving what you have.

2 You need a large motor, i.e. the transwarp should suffice, but you also need a large generator and engine if you wish to mostly eliminate the batteries and have a recognizable amount of power.

To try to get a handle on how much generator you need, I looked at an existing 150 converted to electric:
James Mannett's 2002 Ford F150

It uses 350 Wh/Mile (I guess)
144 volt system
500 amp controller
~40 mile range.

Weighs 5600 lbs with 24 batteries. And has power steering and brakes and stuff.

Since you are looking at the warp9, I took a look at that, it appears to handle ~500 amps for about 5 minutes, 300 continuous. Saw someone mention a 100kw run on a trans9, so that is 134 horsepower for best reliable performance expectation, ~3000 rpm (~150V) and 667A for short duration.

So for best sustained performance from the warp9 then, you would need a diesel generator that is at least 134 horsepower after the losses of mechanical to electrical, and the controller (and rectification?).

So now we have a couple real numbers to work with at least, to get in the ballpark, or at least have an upper limit on your power requerements.

A quick look at ebay, the cheapest 100kw generator is $4000,
Continental Diesel 150 HP 6 Cylinder Consolidated GE 100KW Genset Generator Used | eBay

It looks really big and heavy, and even used it costs about as much as batteries, but it looks pretty modular And it is likely to use even more fuel than its non electric counterpart.

I will go out on a limb here and say I hate your idea, sorry bro. Spend the money on batteries if you are bent. Also consider scaling down to something more personal transport sized if possible.
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Old 06-27-2013, 05:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The trojan t-145 batteries in that truck look like they are $195 apiece, shipped, without any shopping around, and there are 24 of them, so that is $4680 worth of 144v DC power (which is what existing motor controllers like), so it doesn't make much sense monitarily unless you have a freebie 100kw diesel generator laying around and a 600 amp rectifier and 144 volts of buffer batteries.

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_saca...+T-145&_sop=15
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Old 06-27-2013, 05:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi P-hack,
I was with you up to here:
Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
So for best sustained performance from the warp9 then, you would need a diesel generator that is at least 134 horsepower after the losses of mechanical to electrical, and the controller (and rectification?).
Even at 5600 lbs, a F150 needs less than 30 hp to cruise at 65 mph. You might like to have 135 hp available for quick accelerations. But even steep grades, say Grapevine Grade, only needs about 60 hp more. In order to cruise and recharge something like a 45 hp generator would be sufficient. 90 hp if there is a long pass in the daily drive.
-mort
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Old 06-27-2013, 06:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Ok, that makes a "little" more sense. I was assuming that the buffer batteries don't do much except reduce ripple. Still to have batteries that can provide enough amps to support what the warp9 is capable of, you need 12 of them that can deliver 600ish amps, plus figuring out how to charge them without overcharging them from the generator but without undercharging them also. And the generator output needs to be efficiently regulated to ~162 volts. But battery recharge needs to be managed after the batteries are drained so that there is sufficient power for motoring.

The price on large generators does not seem to drop in proportion to power at these levels though, but at least it doesn't look so much like you have a locomotive engine in the bed And the deeper discharge runs are going to affect automotive battery life.
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Old 06-27-2013, 06:26 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Charging Information For Lead Acid Batteries

"Lead acid charging uses a voltage-based algorithm that is similar to lithium-ion. The charge time of a sealed lead acid battery is 12–16 hours, up to 36–48 hours for large stationary batteries. With higher charge currents and multi-stage charge methods, the charge time can be reduced to 10 hours or less; however, the topping charge may not be complete. Lead acid is sluggish and cannot be charged as quickly as other battery systems."

this thread hurts my head, lead is dead for a hybrid.
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Old 06-27-2013, 11:14 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
1 Series hybrid (especially DIY) is probably going to be lossy, good chance that you will be farther ahead in terms of fuel consumption driving what you have.
I know this is true. I love what I have. But, it's got 360k miles on it... I need to start thinking about something else.

Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
2 You need a large motor, i.e. the transwarp should suffice, but you also need a large generator and engine if you wish to mostly eliminate the batteries and have a recognizable amount of power.
I also think a Warp 9 is plenty.



Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
To try to get a handle on how much generator you need, I looked at an existing 150 converted to electric:
Not really an apple to apples comparison, but pretty close.

Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
It uses 350 Wh/Mile (I guess)
144 volt system
500 amp controller
~40 mile range.
Lets save these numbers for later in the reply, shall we?


Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
Since you are looking at the warp9, I took a look at that, it appears to handle ~500 amps for about 5 minutes, 300 continuous. Saw someone mention a 100kw run on a trans9, so that is 134 horsepower for best reliable performance expectation, ~3000 rpm (~150V) and 667A for short duration.
134HP? I think your math is broken. If it took 134HP to push an F-150 down the road at 45 to 55 mph, they would all explode right now. It's getting to that speed that needs the extra, and I have absolutely no intentions of making the generator do that. I want to buffer it with a small battery pack. The batteries will get me there. The generators will hold me there. I don't care if it's zero to sixty on 3 minutes or so...

As a second point, just because the Warp 9 can do a thing, doesn't mean I have to make it do that thing. Performance is NOT my middle name. I'm slow and fine with that. The first thing this truck is getting is a bumper sticker that says "Go around, @$$hole!"

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Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
So for best sustained performance from the warp9 then, you would need a diesel generator that is at least 134 horsepower after the losses of mechanical to electrical, and the controller (and rectification?).
I think I covered this above. I'm not trying to find an equivalent. I just want something that rolls and is electric, even if it is a fraction of the capabilities of the original. The generators only have to provide the power needed to maintain speed, they don't have to get me there. And, the speed being maintained is about 45 to 55 mph. This thing will never know what an interstate on ramp looks like.

Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
So now we have a couple real numbers to work with at least, to get in the ballpark, or at least have an upper limit on your power requirements.
I think you're overstating what you think my expectations are...

Quote:
Originally Posted by P-hack View Post
I will go out on a limb here and say I hate your idea, sorry bro. Spend the money on batteries if you are bent. Also consider scaling down to something more personal transport sized if possible.
I have something personal transport sized already. I need something that I can carry stuff with. A Honda Rebel Bobber and a VW Passat TDI make terrible farm trucks... Ever try putting a sheet of plywood in a Passat? Or, strap it to your back on a motorcycle that doesn't even have fenders? That idea, I hate....

If I needed 134HP, I'd hate my idea too, bro. But, I don't need 134HP. My Passat does 155MPH on a whole lot less than that. That number is nowhere near reality.
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Old 06-27-2013, 11:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
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... 65 mph ... 135 hp ...
I appreciate your input guys, but you're aiming for performance levels I don't need or want.

65 miles per wut? I'm not going to drive that fast. This thing will spend most of it's life on dirt or poorly paved roads. Time spent above 45mph is going to be minimal, and at that, I don't see a reason to ever go above 55.

My Passat IDLES at 27MPH in 5th gear.

I need help overcoming the charge level issue of the tandem battery/generator combo.

Think of it more like an electric tractor and an F-150 had a baby.

I'm thinking a triplet of China Freight 8500KW/7000KW gens. I do recognize the point about batteries... A part of me just wants to see if I can do it with the car batteries as a surge buffer for acceleration. I think it can be done. But, I can also be wrong about that. But, at the prices cited above, I may just go with some real lead acid batteries anyway.

To go twice the speed, I'd need 4 times the power. To go half the speed, I need 1/4 of the power...

We already know it takes about 30hp to roll an F-150 at 70mph. I want 50. That's 20mph less. 3x 7kw = ~28hp. The 420cc engine are really about 18 each. That's 54 ponies, and I won't even have to push them to 100% to do what I want. I'm not asking for half the speed. I'm asking for about 65%. So, I only need a little over half of the estimated power that I'd need at 70. Bu y that very, very rough estimation. 20HP, or 15KW should be enough. I'm packing a full 30% more just to let the gens run in a more comfortable range.

Does this goal assessment seem a little more rational?


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