The converting, maintenance, and operation of a Suzuki Samurai conversion to Electric power.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

October car shows

Sparky went to 2 local car shows Oct 3 and 4. See pictures of the cars I found interesting, see the Oct8CarShows album at
Anyway, I created 5 mini posters which were glued to the back of a sheet of acrylic for display on the hood as seen in this picture. Just for documentation, I will copy them here. Ideas for improvement are welcome, and you are free to use any or all for your purposes. They were created using Word. I could email them to you if that would help.

Why Drive an EV?

This vehicle goes 2 miles per KWH of electricity. Even with the high cost in Corrupticut that is still less than 8¢ per mile.

What is the real cost of gas?

Fuel charge? Military expense? Medical expense?

Environmental cost?

Does it make sense to buy gas from people who hate you?

Want energy independence? This is a true multifuel vehicle. With my solar panels I can drive on sunshine.

The fuel infrastructure is already in place.

Eliminate tune-ups, oil changes, and muffler hassles.

No emission tests.

How far would you drive if your exhaust came out of the steering wheel?

Storm Connors

This next came pretty much from the EV Album


1987 Suzuki Samurai

Owner Storm Connors Barkhamsted, CT

Motor Advanced DC Series Wound 9"

Drivetrain Stock 5 speed, dual range, 4 wheel drive

Controller DC Power Systems Raptor 600

Batteries 18 US Battery 8 Volt, Flooded Lead-Acid,

11 batteries below floor,

7 (+house 12v) under hood

System Voltage 144 Volts

Charger 2 military surplus 150v chargers in series.

On board charger is a bridge rectifier "bad boy" boosted by an 18v transformer in series

Heater Ceramic element replacing heater core.

DC Converter Iota 55amp batterycharger made for RV use running off 144VDC to charge house 12v battery.

Instrumentation Ammeter, Voltmeter,

Trimetric which displays amps, volts, amp hrs used since last charge, % charge remaining, and cumulative amp hours. (

Top Speed 70 MPH (112 KPH)
Acceleration Not earth shaking, but adequate

Range 30-40 Miles

Gas mileage 500 Watt hr/Mile
Seating Capacity 2 adults

Curb Weight 3,320 Pounds (1,509 Kilograms)
Tires Titan Radial load range C ST205-75 R15

Extras After market hard top

Vacuum booster pump provides the brake assist.
Computer slot fans to ventilate the battery boxes.

Battery control panel

Driveshaft mounted parking brake

Diamond plate interior panels

OOgah horn

This is a pretty Spartan vehicle. Not much in the way of creature comforts.

A pitch for the NEEAA. The logo was at the top, but it doesn't seem to want to copy here :-(

Our active EV club generally meets at 2PM on the second Saturday of the month in Killingworth, CT. You’re invited to join us. See the web site or call 203-530-4942 for details.

Sparky is # 1059 of over 2000 EVs detailed at

To answer the inevitable question


How much does it cost to convert?

Much depends on your scrounging ability. Scrapped fork lift trucks can supply some parts. If you are buying new parts, the shopping list would include:

Motor $2,000

Controller $1,500

Batteries $1,500-$20k

Charger $30-$2,500

Battery Boxes $???

Motor/Trans adapter $600

Instrumentation $200 and up.

Misc wire, fuses, etc. $500

Parts are expensive because of the low volumes. Imagine building a Buick with parts purchased from the service department.

Electric Vehicles of America in Wolfeboro, NH is the nearest supplier.

And finally,

Get a charge FAQ

How long does it take to charge?

This car has about 15KW of usable energy in the battery pack. That means that if the pack is low, about 15,000 watts needs to be returned. How long it will take depends on how much power you have available if your charger will handle it.

Ø A 240V 30A dryer outlet could do this in 2 hours.

Ø A standard 120V 15A outlet would require about 9 hours.

Ø A 190 watt (3’X4’) solar panel mounted on the car’s roof could charge it up with 79 hours of full sunshine.

Regeneration would use the motor as a generator to slow down thus saving the brakes as well as charging the battery. If I could do it, it would increase the range by about 10%.

Mounting a generator to the wheel or a windmill on the front won’t do anything positive. The energy to turn these things would ultimately come from the batteries which are causing the car to move. The charge they would return would be less than the drag they created. See “conservation of energy”.

Anyway, a lot of people found Sparky of interest. Trying to format on the blog is still frustrating! Importing a copy of a Word document is not a good idea! Way too much formatting info that has to be removed. The posters are better looking than they appear here.