Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Getting a new Synkromotive Controller

After mentioning the motor controller temperature faults to Ives (the designer) at Synkromotive, he suggested we swap it out for a newer one. I went into the shop this evening and swapped out the controller. Ives looked at the old one and basically told me that I had beta test unit #2 with tiny heatsinks, bad ventilation and very little filtering on the temperature fault circuitry. Apparently other customers have had the same issues and the new controller should be far better.One other thing the folks at Synkromotive showed me was a newer vacuum assist pump for the braking system that's very quiet from EVComponents. It's a bit expensive, but the pump produced very little noise, even with the hood open and my hear near it. Also, to enhance the power steering, they use the electric power steering pump from a Toyota MR2 so that parallel parking isn't as hard. More info here.So far, the new controller is doing just fine. It also got bumped up to 700 motor amps from 600 when starting from a stop. The tires do a wonderful little "chirp" when I floor it from a stop in first gear before the batteries current maxes out at 300 amps. I could kick both of those up, but choose not to so I can save breaking my transmission and batteries.I'll try and keep y'all posted on the progress. I'm a bit tired of working through issues right now, so if the car drives well, you might not hear from me for a few weeks.One other complaint I received was that the open-source Civic plans were not complete on the Civic-EV Google Group. The complaint is valid and I plan on finishing things when the summer is over and I'm past my burn-out stage on this project. I hope to just enjoy driving the car for awhile. The modified charging circuit seems to be doing its job well and I'm happy that problem is over.In the meantime, I'll be attending the Wayland Invitational at PIR to rub shoulders with the bigwigs in the EV industry at the end of July.