Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Aligning Suspension and Fixing Charging System

Last Friday, I took the Civic into the suspension shop to replace the passenger-side axle (CV joint boot was broken), replace a brake line (those are important) and get a full alignment. The mechanic just couldn't get over how he could come to a full stop and not stall the motor without pushing in the clutch. The electrical specialist mechanic up the street took my card and vowed to come to the next OEVA meeting. I'm really glad I had the over-rev protection on the motor via the tach shift-light output. The mechanic revved the motor quite a few times while trying to shift like a gasoline car.

With the Charge Detector unit not working, I've been using my timer-on-a-cord to charge the batteries at night. For the past few days, I've been trying to figure out why the charge detector blew up. Many folks would have just sent it back, but with my EE skills and stubbornness, I chose to figure out the problem myself.

After taking a few days to study the circuit, I found a few blown components. I replaced the blown components and tweaked some resistor values and we'll give it another try with a full charge cycle tonight.

I'm not going to post any details of the circuit here for two reasons. First, Belktronix is moving to the Gen2 version of the charging system which doesn't use a charge controller and, second and more importantly, it's a proprietary design and I don't want to cause any ill will with Belktronix. I suppose I voided my warranty anyway by tinkering with it, so I'd better live with my decision.

The first two days of commuting this week went well. The outside temperature is warming up a bit (we're above 50 degrees F now) and the batteries are getting broken in, albeit somewhat jarringly.

Let's hope the rest of the week goes well...

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