Friday, August 27, 2010

Start of Final Paint!

I stopped in at Rainbow today to find they are working on the final paint.  They started by spraying the front trunk, passenger compartment, rear trunk, inside door panels and underside of the front and rear trunk lids.  They plan 4-5 coats here and then the exterior surfaces, followed by the clearcoat.  The color looks very deep and rich metallic gray, even in the poor shop lighting you see in the pictures below.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

How much will it weigh? How fast will it accelerate?

I wanted to know the completed weight of the converted car to get an idea of the net extra weight from the electric kit minus the weight of the removed gasoline engine, starter motor, fuel tank, etc.

Shari at ElectroAuto says the completed car will weigh about 3300 pounds.  I'll have the car weighed at a local scale once the project is complete.

According to the car specs, it has a curb weight of 2139 pounds, which includes a full tank of fuel.  This means the electric kit is net 1161 pounds heavier.  The US-125XC batteries are 67 pounds each, for a total of 1340 pounds, plus 140 pounds for the electric motor.  Not counting small stuff, this means 319 pounds of original 914 parts are removed from the car.

1161 pounds represents a 54% increase in total weight, which is pretty dramatic.  Luckily the original 1.7 liter engine is pretty anemic, with a 0-60 mph time at 14.0 seconds.  Given the extreme torque of the electric motor I'm hoping to match or beat that.  My traveling needs trade off acceleration and top speed for distance, so I'll be happy to just get up to traffic speeds in a reasonable amount of time.  We'll find out soon.

Cleaning the Dirty Bits

While waiting through the delays getting the body and the electric kit parts, I've been working on cleaning the items I pulled off the car and will be re-installing in the early steps.  The motor mount bar was caked in 37 years of grime, so I power-washed it, scrubbed with degreaser, coated with de-rust fluid, primed, painted in satin black and clear coated.  It's now beautiful!

Next, I started to clean the transmission case.  It's full of nooks and crannies, crammed with grime and flaking paint.  I power-washed, and am halfway through cleaning with a toothbrush-sized wire brush and degreaser.  This is what I started with, second picture is half-complete.

Lastly, I worked on the driveshafts.  The trick is to keep water out of the gearing.  The shaft appears to be covered in a layer of plastic which is flaking away in some places but still holding tight in other places.  The first picture is as pulled off the car, second is ready to go back on.

Can't wait to get the body and the kit and get started!