May 20th, 2011
The motor is finally back in the garage. The adapter plate came out great. It all seems to line up quite well and looks beautiful. I haven’t decided yet if I’m going to have it anodized.
I had to mill two spacer rings. The first one was a tiny bit short and the ring gear was rubbing against the bell housing a tiny bit. The second one seems perfect.
I also fabricated a ring clamp to go around the motor and welded a plate to it that I can bolt the intermediate shaft to. The transmission that I am installing is from an Acura Integra with a B-series motor. The integra has equal length half shafts. To make the half shafts equal length, there is an intermediate shaft between the left side of the transmission and the half shaft on the left side. It normally bolts to the engine block.
My plan is to also weld a mounting point for the drivers side motor mount onto the ring clamp.
Hopefully I’ll have some pictures up soon of the motor in the car!
December 15th, 2010
Just a little bit more work to go. I have to finish up the chamfers and then it should be ready to test fit. I still have to make a spacer to go between the plate and the motor to get the spacing between the flywheel and the transmission right.
December 13th, 2010
I started milling the other side today. It’s fun to see the picture that I drew on the computer emerge from the big block of aluminum (and to see more chips of aluminum fly everywhere).
December 9th, 2010
On Monday I finally bit the bullet and started cutting the adapter plate. I’ve had the aluminum sitting around for more than 2 years but have been too afraid to start cutting it until I was sure that the hole pattern was correct.
So, Monday I started off by facing the piece off with a 3/4 carbide end mill and then cutting out the recess in the back (the transmission side). Then I switched to some smaller end mills to cut the holes for the bolts and dowels. I had to use some extra long end mills to make it through the inch and a quarter plate which caused some problems. The quarter inch end mill was quite flexible and had a habit of deflecting when plunging or taking deep cuts. It also tended to chatter quite easily.
After cutting all of the holes a few chamfers, I switched to a 1/2 inch end mill and cut out the center and the perimeter leaving about five thousandths of an inch of stock remaining. Then I removed the plate from the mill, flipped it over and gave it a whack with a dead blow and it tore right out.
It fits! The dowel holes were about 2mm too shallow but that’s pretty easily fixed. Everything seems to line up pretty well. Now to flip it over and machine the other side (which is only for cosmetic and weight reduction reasons). All of the precision holes are done.
It only took two and a half years!
November 15th, 2010
I have finally gotten the touch probe hooked up to the CNC mill. Today I took apart the transmission so that the bell housing half would fit on the table and used the touch probe to get all of the bolt hole locations. It worked great! The probe seems to be repeatable to within a few ten thousandths. Now I’m using a laser in the spindle to record some locations from the perimeter of the transmission to get the outline for the adapter plate.
October 31st, 2010
Nathan wanted to be R2D2 for Halloween this year, then he didn’t and I thought I wasn’t going to be making a costume this year, then he did again. So, here it is. It’s made from Tyvek, a clothes hamper and various tapes (duct tape, electrical tape, Tyvek tape). It came out pretty good. A little cumbersome to walk in though (especially up and down steps).
January 31st, 2010
I’m finally making some progress on the adapter plate. I have machined a mockup out of MDF. Now I have to verify the pattern before I start machining it out of aluminum. Things have been going kind of slow since I only get down to the shop once a week and I’ve been spending quite a bit of time getting the mill running well.
June 12th, 2008
I drew up a design for the adapter plate in SolidWorks. I think it is pretty much done. I will have to verify the thickness before I cut it out. I will put the coupler on the motor and measure how much it is sticking out from the face of the motor. I may make the tapered hole in the back of the coupler a little deeper to allow the bushing to seat in a little further to get the whole assembly a 1/4″ or so shorter.
This was my first foray into using SolidWorks and I have to say that it’s a pleasure to use. If only it was a Mac OS application and not so ridiculously expensive.
In the past I have used Rhino for things like but it makes it much more difficult to go back and change things. With this drawing could modify things like the thickness of the ribs by just changing one number.
June 4th, 2008
I finally decided that the way to go was to make a coupler that accepts a QD bushing and bolts to the back of the flywheel.
I drew the part up a couple of times in Rhino until I got it the way I wanted and then decided to draw it up in the emachineshop.com software to see how much it would cost to have them fabricate it.
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January 30th, 2008
I finally bit the bullet and put down a deposit for a Z2k controller from Cafe Electric.
The controller is capable of pulling 1900 amps out of the batteries at 200 volts. This is a more than twice what the T-Rex controller I had in there could do.
The main thing that pushed me to switch to the Zilla is the amount of configuration you can do with them. The T-Rex was a nice controller but it basically had one adjustment which was the max current (well, it also had a rev limit setting). The Zilla can also return some data about the current operating conditions over the RS232 link.
I’m hoping to have a small linux based computer (probably a Nokia N770) that will grab data from the Zilla and from the battery regulators (probably Manzanita Micro Mk3 Regs). The regulators will be able to return the voltage of the individual batteries. The computer could also be set up to modify the settings for the Zilla (like the current limit).
I will probably have the current limit dialed down most of the time since I think maximum limit will break stuff pretty quickly.