Lotus Elan

Electric Elan

PostPost by: LotusElon » Thu Jan 20, 2022 5:23 pm

1. Did you modify your existing Elan Tacho or buy a new one to work with the hall effect sensor?
2. Did you modify the fuel gauge to use the PWM signal - I was thinking of adding a current amp to take the Orion BMS output of 0-5V for remaining battery capacity to drive into the bimetallic strip heater in the Elan fuel gauge.
3. Is your front to back trunking metal or plastic?
4. Did you use 70mm² HV cable?
5. For instruments did you take motor temp from the original coolant sensor or BMS?
6. Are you using full Hyper9 torque or did you throttle back to protect the drive train?
7. Or what did you do to strengthen the drive train - i plan to use solid driveshafts - have you broken anything yet?
8. How do you control the charge current between 10A and 32A for Type 2 and granny charging? Existing chargers do not seem to have a control for this unless it is done over CAN bus
9. Do you detect low temp (for charging) using BMS or a separate thermostat?
10. Did you use Tesla 3 way coolant diverter valve or something different to divert around the radiator?
11. What tyres are you running?
12. Where did you get your batteries from?
13. Please can I come and see your car? :)


Good questions !!
Great spec - V close to what I'd do if I'd done it again, I'm just very 'tight' on weight .. less is more.

Main area I'd differ is to use simpBMS rather than Orion. Orion is very good and well respected but simpBMS works so well with tesla modules and their existing PCB's, data bus, connectors, bleed resistors - so less less wiring, less rewiring etc Less to do and less to go wrong < I learnt the hard way previous project that less is more as more stuff is more to go wrong :-)

As for tuning motor to be like a twinc ... good luck : (totally different profile - I still getting used to its nuances and Software tuning)
Hyper9 vs TwinCam.jpg and

1. existing tach + https://spiyda.com/ (plus hall sensor and magnets - bonus question: how many magnets ??? < think about it :-) .. I didn't :mrgreen:
2. No simpBMS drives it with PWM
3. 5 x Plastic (3 black conduit for + , - and signals ) 2 john guest for Flow and return
4. yes from zero ev
5. Motor temp now shown on Hyper9 display . BUT Future mod is to use the existing Elan temp sensor (bulb on pipe) strapped to Motor with Ali block < do this similar range eg 0-100degC. Otherwise SimpBMS shows SOC, currents, battery temps. I Plan to use the Top 'oil pressure' gauge driven from something .. experimenting with syringes to go mech to pressure < future work. I dont have a 12v meter (but I dont want to cut any holes as dash / interior is almost 100% original) ... Q: how to get the oil pressure gauge to show 12v :? :-)
6. Full 100% forward and 30% backwards. BUT .....
7. with solid CV drive shafts / new diff outputs /rebuild / sprint strengthening bracket . In gears 1 and 2 tyres 'release' the excess torque (same in 3 & 4 if damp !!) < future plan fit an LSD. But NOT wide tyres :-) ). Nothimg broken yet, BUT some bolts did work loose !!
8. ... guess what ..... simpBMS :-) and a switch (see pix inside boot).
9. ... guess what ..... simpBMS :-)
10. I had some prototype Fan-coil mixer valves (which I designed for Satchwell 10 years ago) .
11. Firestone Multihawk 155/80 (on car when got it) .. OK but might try Firestone rain masters next (Im not into massive grip - less fun :mrgreen:
12. Met a local guy via ebay who bought a whole model x pack and sold off what he didn't need (for his e-boat project). Nice guy now associated with https://www.secondlife-evbatteries.com/ Also check all the DIY ev UK facebook groups, Zero-EV ECC etc BUT make sure you get matched modules - ALL out of same car and all at a similar SOC (good modules hold charge for months/years) MS 85Kw seem to be longest lasting... some even go UP in time
13. Sure - about 50 miles away Poole, South Coast, DM me

I hope this helps and answers - sorry I can be a bit flippant :-) .. lifes too short to take it too seriously
Cheers

Mark
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PostPost by: Spunagain » Fri Jan 21, 2022 11:53 am

Reply to Mark
Thanks for the very quick reply – lots to read up on and think about! Flippant is good, no-one takes me to seriously either!

The SimpBMS does look good, I need to read the documentation more thoroughly though! The Simp display would go nicely in the ashtray gap!

For the existing tach0 the https://spiyda.com/ looks good – at 1st glance using the Tach signal booster -894- with 2 magnets! They have lots of interesting modules there!

The Batteries are tricky the 6.3kWH ones are attractive but quite a but pricier than the 5.3kWh ones. Do I spend now or go cheap hoping for a better solution to appear for an upgrade in a few years time.

I will be in touch by DM soon!

All the best
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PostPost by: LotusElon » Fri Jan 21, 2022 4:19 pm

with 2 magnets!
Well done ( It took me a little longer ... durrrrr 8) )
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PostPost by: LotusElon » Wed Mar 09, 2022 9:34 pm

IMG_5983.JPG and
Met a relative today :-)
To collect matching grey head S4 Hard top :wink: :-)
IMG_5987.JPG and
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PostPost by: JohnMorin » Sat May 28, 2022 1:34 pm

Hi

Today I visited Doctor MX5 near Southampton to collect my son's MX5 after some mods. They have built an electric MX5 Mk1 which they were only too pleased to show us. They retained the stock gearbox, diff and driveshafts and adapted the bellhousing to accept the electric motor. Apparently retaining the gearbox allows the use of a smaller motor. A battery pack sits where the radiator was with another one under the boot floor. Weight is up by about 50 kilos and the centre of gravity is lower but the weight is moved slightly forward and backwards because of the batteries. They say the range is about 100 miles and it is very quick. DVLA says it will require an IVA test before it can be driven on the road. Knowing the enthusiasm of these guys I'm sure they would share their knowledge with anyone contemplating something similar - if it's not an MX5!

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PostPost by: LotusElon » Sat May 28, 2022 5:33 pm

JohnMorin wrote:Hi
Today I visited Doctor MX5 near Southampton to collect my son's MX5 after some mods. They have built an electric MX5 Mk1 which they were only too pleased to show us. They retained the stock gearbox, diff and driveshafts and adapted the bellhousing to accept the electric motor. Apparently retaining the gearbox allows the use of a smaller motor. John


Great Stuff - Good car to convert, espesh now low cost MK2's.
I was put off by the work to connect instruments (canBUS etc) so fair play to these guys !
Zero-EV.co.uk also have developed a single speed MX5 > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zfWa7glBwn4
(along with Boxster's, 911's and EV conversion parts)
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PostPost by: TBG » Mon May 30, 2022 4:24 pm

Lotus Elon - the same difference to a true Elan as a single bar electric fire to a good old log burner. In my view a total waste of time and effort. Going to Lago Maggiore for my 8oth birthday in late June - how would I get there in this electric mash up? Each to his own I suppose - but not for me. D
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PostPost by: LotusElon » Mon May 30, 2022 4:59 pm

Update:
I have had several enquiries for cad files/plans but sorry, I can’t supply specifics as my liability insurance wouldn’t cover - and the work is very experimental (ie doesn't always work).

I am now using Elon as a ‘daily’, eg 27mile commute etc and really enjoying this Elan more than all my previous 8 Elans. Along with total reliability - it just goes. The electric torque, even from zero in top gear, [url][Daughter Setting off in Top Gear https://photos.app.goo.gl/kWFmDaWbjNc4nFKu7 ][/url] - allows undiluted fun in the handling dept. …. uninterrupted by gear changes…., but hey I know some would miss the noise. Elon (car AND person) is proper marmite : 50:50 love and hate eh @TBG :-)

Below are a typical set of Q&A’s from another owner thinking about a similar EV conversion.
Which might help others:

1) Did you say the battery packs were from a Type X Tesla? - what was the capacity of each pack was it 27kw total i.e. 5.5kw per pack?
YES early Model s/x modules were 5kWh (s/x85 2013+ ) and over time they increased to 6+ kWh (s/x100 ) . The s/x 70/75 modules are less desirable as smaller capacity but same profile.
(The ones generally for sale on eBay seem to be triple, side by side type?
I'd only trust modules I know the history of / matched, and ALL from the same car / known sources eg 2nd life batteries in Christchurch, UK zero-ev or ECC in wales.
BUT even 2012 modules work well with capacity levelling off well over 90% and some going back up !!

2) What was used to space the battery packs, enabling them to be stacked on top of each other?
Space was tight vertically for the 3 modules in the front, so I stacked them on top of each other with special 4mm closed cell (wont wear) foam between modules. Adjustable structural spacers and tie rods between the module rail mounts.
Other EV converters would frown on this, especially in the EU, and use a metal box supporting the modules on rails but:
a) before conversion my carbs leaked petrol directly above the distributor
b) space and weight were at a premium
c) I sealed the modules in a plastic case from water ingress
d) i understand the risks :-)

3) Is the Hyper 9 connected directly to the gearbox output shaft, without the clutch plate etc, or is the clutch retained?
Yes, I used a spare clutch plate inner to match the splines along with a standard adapter drive flange and an own design simple cnc'ed joiner between the standard parts (with magnets for the hall sensor>amp>tacho )

4)
Where was the bell housing adaptor plate obtained from?
Own design cnc'ed. BUT, although it will be v tight at the front of the motor to chassis, heavier and slightly more weight on front wheels, you could possibly keep the bell housing, clutch, lightened flywheel and design/make adapters:
a) motor shaft to Flywheel
b) Motor case to Bellhousing
c) front of bell housing to original engine mounts/rubber>Chassis mounts.

But my main aim was to keep the balance/weight distribution the same above all else (essence of elan handling is THE key for me).
And with same power, but much more torque from zero, a clutch would be more useful for faster down changes, possibly more fun ?? but otherwise adds weight, slip/reliability problems.
I also have size 11 shoes and long legs, so the clutch pedal space is welcome (the pedal is still there but tucked up out of the way.

5)Contacts for supply of various parts ?
I didn't use but - https://www.secondlife-evbatteries.com/ in christchurch, UK (also sell the simpBMS)
http://www.zero-ev.co.uk for wire etc, and now motor, cooler and controllers (I used ecc but they are now TV and own projects mainly)
AVC2 for public charger handshake (from ECC https://www.electricclassiccars.co.uk/)
https://evshop.eu/en/2-home for charger (or from zero-ev.co.uk now)
ebay (with caution !!! ) for many misc parts eg water pump, vacuum pump, Non-return valves, vacuum sensor (for headlights) etc NB use over cable current sensors NOT inline shunts)
Own spares from various engineering projects eg valves, tubes wires, connectors etc (up-cycling)

Plus LOTS and lots of deep googling and learning from others projects.

Dont (ie my mistakes) :-) ...
use 4 magnets for hall sensor (2 for 4 cycle engine equivalent ... durrrrr :-) )
use cheap crap voltage monitors relays or contactors .. or test fully, off the car

I Hope this helps - and do check out ALL the pictures and my descriptions descriptions on insta/web for more, warts and all - https://mas-design.com/lotus-elon/
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PostPost by: Andy8421 » Mon May 30, 2022 7:18 pm

TBG wrote:Lotus Elon - the same difference to a true Elan as a single bar electric fire to a good old log burner. In my view a total waste of time and effort. Going to Lago Maggiore for my 8oth birthday in late June - how would I get there in this electric mash up? Each to his own I suppose - but not for me. D

Fair enough, but a remarkable achievement, and excellent quality work.

I think Chapman would have approved - after all Tesla's first car - the 'roadster' was based on a vehicle built by Lotus, so there is a direct link.

I have been a petrol head all my life, but the next car is a Tesla model Y.
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71 Elan Sprint (to be restored)
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PostPost by: LotusElon » Tue Jun 14, 2022 12:45 pm

I'm sure Colin would approve of innovations that make a Lotus lighter and more efficient - but Obv's, like Colin I'm no traditionalist 8) and like to look forward.

I love the size, steering and handling of Elans - all enjoyed at legal speeds.
Electric just adds quietness, and steering that isn't interrupted by gear changes - otherwise its pure Elan.
There are also other benefits which maybe only I (as a nerd) appreciate:
Free to use (via PV panels), with free fill ups at Tesco's (imagine rolling upto a petrol station and filling for free)
Similar range (I got 23mpg before conversion) - but bladder range remains the same :lol:
I've done some longer trips with short 'top-ups' on route eg tescos, many charging places with food (and loo's) and mates places - it just takes planning stops where there are chargers, all part of the EV adventure.
No stinky exhaust, smells, oil burning/dripping, rough running, flat spots, overheating or stuttering in traffic.
(but I know from owning 8 Elans this can be part of the 'fun' :D )

To answer a couple a PM's: what to do differently with hindsight..

With my experience with Elon , using a Hyper9 motor, and if money was no object, I think I'd keep the 4 speed gearbox, possibly modified to just 2nd and 4th and also a lightened clutch with super lightweight flywheel plus magnesium bellhousing, for faster changes between gears - but this would be slightly heavier than my set up eg c 670-680kg.
..Or ..
Use a single overall gear ratio halfway between 3rd gear and 4th gear (based om 3.7 diff) - which would be a compromise between starting acceleration and top speed.

This is because the huge torque (230Nm) of the Hyper9 motor starts at zero and then tails off above 5000 rpm.
I could use a more powerful, 'torquey' and higher revving motor - but this would then put much more stress on all the other Elan parts than even a highly tuned twincam would do eg chassis, diff, drive shafts, hubs, etc etc), and such motors tend to be 400v rather than 120v, so would need more, but smaller batteries / complex BMS etc.

Tesla battery modules remain THE most dense Power/weight others have more casings etc.
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PostPost by: The Veg » Wed Jun 15, 2022 12:06 am

LotusElon wrote:With my experience with Elon , using a Hyper9 motor, and if money was no object, I think I'd keep the 4 speed gearbox, possibly modified to just 2nd and 4th and also a lightened clutch with super lightweight flywheel plus magnesium bellhousing, for faster changes between gears - but this would be slightly heavier than my set up eg c 670-680kg.
..Or ..
Use a single overall gear ratio halfway between 3rd gear and 4th gear (based om 3.7 diff) - which would be a compromise between starting acceleration and top speed.

This is because the huge torque (230Nm) of the Hyper9 motor starts at zero and then tails off above 5000 rpm.
I could use a more powerful, 'torquey' and higher revving motor - but this would then put much more stress on all the other Elan parts than even a highly tuned twincam would do eg chassis, diff, drive shafts, hubs, etc etc), and such motors tend to be 400v rather than 120v, so would need more, but smaller batteries / complex BMS etc.


Interesting. I've been following your project with some interest- no desire to do anything soon since my Plus 2 has very few miles on the last engine rebuild, but I've been playing the 'mental engineering' game about how I'd convert it to electric if I ever had a decent reason to do so (like if I ever blow-up the engine beyond practical/affordable replacement). The motor/gearing stuff is particularly interesting, as I see your example and think about any changes I'd make for the sake of being in a heavier car.

If money was truly no object, I'd want a small, light gear unit consisting of just the two desired ratios and some sort of pushbutton-controlled means of quickly and seamlessly shifting between the two, the small size of the unit allowing the motor to be mounted farther back into the vee of the frame for improved mass-centralisation and freeing more space in the forward compartment.

Of course even better bits will be available at some point in the future so who knows what improvements will be possible then!
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