Monday, June 9, 2008

The Patient has Arrived

My colleague Ian and I picked up the '92 Civic today. It rattles a bit, but overall is in good condition. The paint is good, the interior is good and it looks like everything works.

I'm eager to start tearing out the engine. Ian suggested we get some baseline numbers like 0-60 time and curb weight before we start so that we can do an accurate comparison.

With the motor, controller, and adapter on order, I think this project can begin. I have to keep reminding myself to document every step and not rush through things so the conversion manual can be accurate.



Joe said...

How are you going to work on a car that's not bset with rust?

Ian said...

With a big grin on our faces! Yay for the west coast and no salt!

Chris W said...

Tim K

I have been following your blog with much interest. I am considering converting my 98 civic 4 dr lx. I have found on several automotive websites that it is only about 75# heavier than a 95 4 dr lx. Can you give some insight to whether this will be a good idea? Also I drive about 48 miles total each day( mostly 50 to 55 mph). I can recharge at work after 24 miles if necessary. Would I be better off with your agm battery setup or should I go with the civic with a cord setup? Would agm's handle the ohio cold better than floodies?

TimK said...

Hi Chris,

I don't see why you couldn't convert your 98 Civic. You'll have to modify these plans to fit your chassis and adjust the suspension too. Bob Bath chose the 92-95 years for the following reason:

"This text is in reference to conversion of a 1992-1995 model year (also known as "5th generation") Honda Civic sedan with manual (S20) transmission to all-electric power. Other Civics can be converted, but construction techniques likely will need to be altered in many places. The weight of successive Civics increases by about 200 lbs. 4th generation Civics lack an airbag, and are likely not quite as crashworthy, nor do they have as much space for batteries. As a result, I feel optimum performance is likely to be realized with this particular glider."

I'm guessing that the AGM batteries will have a range of 35 miles per charge. I think the 48 miles a day will stress your batteries quite a bit. I don't think AGM and floodeds behave much differently in cold weather, but I'm not sure.

Technically, the flooded batteries have more amp-hours, but the AGM batteries have a lower Peukert number which provides more amp-hours at higher currents. I like the AGM batteries because they are spill free, high current and low maintenance. You'll have to weigh the trade-offs for your own conversion.

Cheers, Tim