Saturday, September 27, 2008

Modifying the Hood and Continuing the Rear Battery Rack

Back in this post, the second picture from the bottom shows where the group-31 batteries interfere with the support strut on the front hood.

I used the hacksaw to make two slits in the hood support around the interference and then used the small sledgehammer to crush the interference flat.

I initially tried to be gentle, but this took far too long and I ended up just bludgeoning the support flat. I suspect that some frustration with the project encouraged me to be more forceful than necessary. There is one minor convex dent in the top of the hood from all this banging, but I'm willing to live with it.

To help even out the support under the batteries in the rear trunk rack, I cut a piece of 1/4" plywood 13" x 36" to sit under the batteries. There are four bolt-heads sticking up, so I covered the bolts with ink from a permanent marker and then tapped the plywood onto the bolt-heads to leave marks where they existed. I could then circle the marks and use a 3/4" spade bit to drill out the wood that would interfere with the bolt heads.

After putting in the sheet of plywood, I loaded the batteries into the rear trunk. Five go in the rack and a sixth one will sit on the passenger side as shown. I've already drilled holes in the angle iron to take vertical pieces of 5/16" all-thread for the battery hold downs. Despite the higher center of gravity from other Civic conversions, I'm psyched to keep the spare tire and still retain a good amount of trunk space for transportation.

Making the hold-downs might take a bit of work since the short edge of these batteries has an interfering piece of plastic. I'll have to cut notches in all the angle iron to navigate this interference. Fortunately, the new cut-off saw should be a bit help in cutting out all these notches.

Tomorrow: dropping the motor back out and (ack) cutting short the tail shaft...

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