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Thread: Electric Car Challenges

  1. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aiden Pettengill View Post
    ...its just that when you're used to jumping dump trucks and loaders, it is quite a shock at first.
    Could be worse.

    If you try to hook jumper cables to the main battery on the Prius, it will be quite a shock: 200V-350V, depending on the year and model.
    Yoga class makes me feel like a total stud, mostly because I'm about as flexible as a 2x4.
    "Design"? Possibly. "Intelligent"? Sure doesn't look like it from this angle.
    We used to be hunter gatherers. Now we're shopper borrowers.
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  2. #122
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    Let's make it even more weird. On my Ford C-Max plug in hybrid (equivalent of Prius Prime) the large high voltage battery can be fully charged, and if the little ordinary car battery goes dead, you cannot start it. The little battery is used somehow (magic) to excite the relay to the high voltage battery, and if it is dead...you need to jump it.

    There is a red cover in the engine area that has a hot terminal, and a negative post that looks like a metal pencil that sticks up about 12" from the bottom of the engine area. Touch a 12V battery (a lantern battery would do it) to the two terminals and you get a relay click and a magically turned on car.

    I bought one of those small pocket sized jump starters to keep in the car, because there is no provision for showing the condition of the regular 12V battery. I asked the dealer....no way the car warns you the battery is going bad. Must be one of those Ford better ideas.

    I have two...the '13 model has quit on me several times, with the dealer finally replacing the faulty part, while the '14 went out once when the battery died, and the dealer fixed it the first try. That and a faulty A/C thermostat on the '14 is the sum total of problems with both cars since new. According to the Lie-O-Meter mine averages 101 MPG, hers is 140, the difference is that we usually take mine on long trips where we don't plug in, and either car averages 37 MPG city or interstate using just gas.

    My next car will have a gas motor and a plug. For OUR SITUATION, it is the best choice. Toyota RAV4 Prime is looking good so far. It will be at least a year, since car deals are hard to find right now, and new choices will be coming out soon, plus I like to wait a year after new ones come out.
    Last edited by Rick Potter; 05-18-2021 at 3:41 AM.
    Rick Potter

    DIY journeyman,
    FWW wannabe.
    AKA Village Idiot.

  3. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Potter View Post
    My next car will have a gas motor and a plug. For OUR SITUATION, it is the best choice. Toyota RAV4 Prime is looking good so far. It will be at least a year, since car deals are hard to find right now, and new choices will be coming out soon, plus I like to wait a year after new ones come out.
    If you can't find a RAV4 prime at MSRP (there's been price gouging) the KIA Niro PHEV as a viable choice. We have a Niro EV and it's adequate. With the back seat folded flat, it can carry plenty.

    The GDI engine is noisy, in normal operation.

    (Prior to the EV, we drove the Optima PHEV and regularly bested 45 miles on electric only.)

  4. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Potter View Post
    Let's make it even more weird. On my Ford C-Max plug in hybrid (equivalent of Prius Prime) the large high voltage battery can be fully charged, and if the little ordinary car battery goes dead, you cannot start it. The little battery is used somehow (magic) to excite the relay to the high voltage battery, and if it is dead...you need to jump it.
    Quite likely they are running all of the computers and control electronics off the 12V, like a 'normal' car.

    The really odd bit is that even pure electrics have a 12V battery; the ones in Teslas are known for going dead at inconvenient times, but at least the newer ones have gone to a 12V lithium-ion pack instead of lead-acid. For the life of me I don't know why they bother. If the main HV battery is dead, about all the 12V is good for is running the charge-control electronics, but I suspect if the main pack is too low to provide that amount of power, something terminal has occurred, no pun intended. I found this article on the subject, but the reasons they give for requiring the 12V "backup" are IMHO unconvincing.
    https://teslatap.com/articles/12-vol...ry-compendium/
    Yoga class makes me feel like a total stud, mostly because I'm about as flexible as a 2x4.
    "Design"? Possibly. "Intelligent"? Sure doesn't look like it from this angle.
    We used to be hunter gatherers. Now we're shopper borrowers.
    The three most important words in the English language: "Front Towards Enemy".
    The world makes a lot more sense when you remember that Butthead was the smart one.
    You can never be too rich, too thin, or have too much ammo.

  5. #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Lanciani View Post
    Until there are generic easily swappable batteries EVs will continue to be a niche. My vision is a standardized battery that can be replaced in just a few minutes by a robot and is leased from an energy provider. This would solve most of the hurdles to EV.
    I agree with you, John.
    I read that the new Ford Lightening will have a range of 2-300 miles. Ford has also applied for a patent on a ‘range extender’ that is a generator that will mount in the bed like a toolbox. Two things occur to me:
    1. Applying your idea of rapidly replaceable batteries, why not have a smaller battery installed when you don’t need a 200 mile range? If you are just going to work and back, 100 miles is gobs and there’s no need to cart around those heavy batteries.
    2. Make the range extender so easily installed and removed that it could be rented. Now, you can go from a short range vehicle to something you can drive long distances.

  6. #126
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    The problem with swappable batteries is us in the north (or more the salt up here in the winter). Lifting/ dropping the battery from the underside would be the easiest but you'll have to deal with corrosion and ice in the wintertime. A door on the side of the car would work but making every door a standard size would be an issue. It can be done but not without working out some of the details.

  7. #127
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    I think another issue with swappable batteries is that it would be a niche market. The vast majority of EVs are driven less than their full range in a typical day and can be charged overnight at home or during the day while the driver is at work. The range limit is just an issue a few times a year when you do a road trip. I'll bet, for everyone out there who drives over 200 miles a day on a regular basis there are a hundred people who drive less than 200 miles a week in their normal commute and thousands of people who drive less than 200 miles a day. The average annual mileage driven, according to the DOT is 13,500 miles or 260 miles a week or 37 miles a day.
    I think the range issue will be solved by improvements in battery technology (think how much better today's cell phone batteries or power tool batteries are compared to ten or twenty years ago).

  8. #128
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    The F150 Lightning is equipped with a heavy skid plate to protect the battery. Any quick swap will require dropping those fasteners, too.

    Claimed range on the Lightning is 300 miles.

    Most importantly, and a clever inducement is that it doubles as a long term portable "generator" during power outages. This would require Ford's proprietary charging station and a transfer switch.

    https://www.autoweek.com/news/future...g-powers-home/

  9. #129
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    Very true, my commute is 20 kilometres and takes an hour.

    Range won’t be a problem for most drivers.....Regards, Rod

  10. #130
    Rather than swappable batteries, I expect we'll see batteries that can be charged faster, especially to 80% of a full charge. So if your vehicle has a stated range of 300 miles, you'll be able to charge it to 240 miles quickly.

    There are just too many problems with the concept of swappable batteries.

    I really like the Ford Lighting concept of being able to supply electricity to the home during a power failure. Also their concept of putting a generator in the truck bed to give you more range on a long trip.

    Really neat, inventive ideas are coming for electric vehicles.

    Mike
    Last edited by Mike Henderson; 05-23-2021 at 8:46 PM.
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  11. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    Also their concept of putting a generator in the truck bed to give you more range on a long trip.
    I keep reading that, and can't help but wonder just how big that widget would need to be to make a meaningful difference in the overall range.
    Yoga class makes me feel like a total stud, mostly because I'm about as flexible as a 2x4.
    "Design"? Possibly. "Intelligent"? Sure doesn't look like it from this angle.
    We used to be hunter gatherers. Now we're shopper borrowers.
    The three most important words in the English language: "Front Towards Enemy".
    The world makes a lot more sense when you remember that Butthead was the smart one.
    You can never be too rich, too thin, or have too much ammo.

  12. #132
    Quote Originally Posted by Lee DeRaud View Post
    I keep reading that, and can't help but wonder just how big that widget would need to be to make a meaningful difference in the overall range.
    I suppose, technically, that all you need to generate is the amount of energy that the car is using cruising along the highway, plus a bit to put some in the battery for when you have to hill climb. Cruising along a flat road doesn't take a lot of HP - Google says between 10 and 20 HP. Ignoring efficiency, 15 HP is 11.25 kW. So the generator would have to be at least 15 kW and 20 kW would be better.

    A 20 kW generator is not a small (or cheap) generator. It would take a lot of the truck bed.

    Alternately, you could use a smaller generator and it would make the battery last longer but the battery would be depleted eventually. For example, if you needed 15kW to cruise, you could put in a 5 kW generator and then you'd only draw 10 kW from the battery, which would give you more range. A 5 kW generator is not that big. There are portables that are bigger than 5 kW. A 7 kW generator could essentially double your range.

    Mike

    [I did some more Googling and got higher HP results for cruising at 70 MPH. But the idea is the same. Whatever the generator supplies will extend the range of your battery.]
    Last edited by Mike Henderson; 05-23-2021 at 11:45 PM.
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  13. #133
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    A generator in the bed will be fine for 90% pf pickup truck users (witness the popularity of micro-beds in trucks), but a few of us use our trucks to actually move things around. Not so good for us.

    There are already much better designs for plug-in hybrids than this. I suspect that this is an idea that sounds good at first hearing, but will go nowhere.

  14. #134
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    And let's not forget the generator in the bed needs to be fueled by something, so you'd need a canister for that fuel.

    <sarcasm on>
    Gee, maybe they could permanently mount this generator and fuel canister somewhere in the truck so that you wouldn't need to be putting it in and out of the bed.
    <sarcasm off>

    To me, this sounds about like the pitch for attaching a solar panel to the roof. On first blush - brilliant! But the devil is in the details...

  15. #135
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    People with electric cars already have generators on a trailer.
    Bill D

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