Sunday, December 31, 2006

Getting some Experience

I'd like to thank the wonderful folks in the Oregon Electric Vehicle Association for all their advice and input in helping me learn more about the whole electric vehicle scene. Rick Barnes has graciously allowed me to help him with his Ford Probe conversion one Saturday and John Benson, who lives a 20-minute walk away, has let me look at his Porsche 914 DC motor conversion project.

I've been blown away by peoples' enthusiasm in sharing information and helping me with this project. I hope I can serve as a good example for others too.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Anyone got a clutch?

The conversion process highly recommends installing a new clutch assembly, so I ordered a clutch kit from Driving Source NW in Salem, OR (part # POR055822) on December 27th.

Dennis from Driving Source NW was going to be in Portland the next day and was wonderful enough to deliver the clutch (and four CV joint gaskets in upper left of photo) to my house. I enjoyed talking about the conversion project with him and hearing about his own experiences with Porsches.

Another part of the conversion involves upgrading the suspension (torsion bar and springs/shocks) on the 914 to handle the extra 800 pounds that come from the batteries.
I talked with Alan over at A & P Specialities in Portland and he gave me a quote for labor to replace the suspension parts.

Overall, everyone I've talked with has been fun to work with and excited to hear more about the progress of this project. Several friends of mine have offered to help with the conversion and give (ahem) objective test drives of the vehicle afterwards to make sure it's operating properly.

Monday, November 20, 2006

The Motor is Here!

Yay! The motor and controller from Electro Automotive (sent from Azure Dynamics) arrived on November 20th and are now sitting in my living room awaiting the remainder of the kit parts. Due to the high demand for kits resulting from the movie Who Killed the Electric Car, Electro Auto has been completely swamped. The kit is supposed to show up 10 weeks after Electro Auto got my $13,000 check back on October 23rd. I'm a bit concerned that Electro Auto is not returning my phone calls or e-mails, but it's still the holiday season and I'm sure they are swamped with requests.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Getting a 914 platform

This is a picture of the yellow 914 that I'm going to be purchasing from Camp914 near Portland as a base platform for the electric vehicle conversion. The picture was taken back on October 14th before it was ready to operate. Craig, the owner of Camp914, has been working to get the car ready to go over the past few months. He ran into a nasty flu over Thanksgiving and then ran into parts problems around Christmas. I'm looking forward to getting the car soon since the kit from Electro Automotive should be here by mid-January.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

My 2007 Dream Project

After seeing the movie Who Killed The Electric Car, I got the nutty idea earlier this year to purchase an all-electric vehicle to commute to work. The motivation was to see if I could get by with as little oil products as possible. I was going to purchase an NmG from Myers Motors, but found the driver compartment a bit crowded and the driving range limited (only about 40 miles). Since I live in Portland, Oregon, I went to a meeting with the Oregon Electric Vehicle Association and found out about several companies that provided drop-in electric conversion kits for existing cars. After doing some research, I found Electro Automotive out of Felton, CA and put down the $13,000 for one of their latest AC motor conversion kits for the Porsche 914.

Electro Auto sent me a conversion manual for their earlier DC motor kit and I've been following the preparations in that booklet for when the kit shows up. I'm currently working with Craig Loughlin out at Camp914 to purchase a 1976 Porsche 914 for the conversion.

A lot has happened over the past few months and I hope to post all that info here for your perusal. I hope everyone had a great 2006 and I wish you all the best for 2007.