Experimental Electric Vehicles

September 27, 2009

Michigan EV Rally & Show

Filed under: news — Nick Helmholdt @ 4:57 pm

This video highlights some of the vehicles at the 2009 Michigan Electric Vehicle Rally & Show. The event took place on August 22, 2009 in Livonia, Michigan. Tony’s TTXGP motorcycle took home the Fastest 2-wheel EV prize.

Tony & Blake with the trophy for the fastest cycle at the 2009 Michigan EV Rally

Tony & Blake with the trophy for the fastest cycle at the 2009 Michigan EV Rally

The Michigan Chapter of the Electric Auto Association organized this event. The owners of the newly formed Current Motor Company (located in Ann Arbor) showed off their scooters at the show, but for some reason I didn’t have any video of their rides.

September 22, 2009

GSXR update

Filed under: 1 — tonyhelms @ 3:19 am

Well last week I purchased a MIG welder so I could start welding aluminum. Unfortunately this set the budget back slightly but I’m still pressing on with the build, here’s what has been done recently.

Here is the rear seat delete faring cover, this helps make the bike lighter, and more aerodynamic.
A small rear cushion will be made to cover the front open area.


here are the high output 3 watt LED taillights, more efficient, brighter, and longer lasting then any other lighting

the camera flash didn’t help this picture, but these are VERY BRIGHT!

here is the “command center” of the motorcycle, which contains-
-power distribution/fuse box
-DC/DC converter 72v-12v 10A
-electronic solid state flasher for turn signals
-main fuse breaker for entire electrical system 300A
-2 H.I.D power ballast for headlights

These electronics will be mounted either under the tank area, or the rear faring. I’m waiting to see the size of the speed controller first.

September 16, 2009

GSXR update

Filed under: 1 — tonyhelms @ 3:28 am

here are some pictures of the past week’s progress.

cleaned and de-greased the entire frame.

installed front “stunt style” faring/headlight assembly, along with HID dual high and low beam headlights. The sides are high intensity amber LED turn signal lights.

picture of new headlight/front faring.

According to the new TTXGP rules we need a working 90+db Horn, so I hid a small horn in the front gussets of the frame.

Its hard to tell, but I chopped both the shifter and rear brake brackets off the lower foot peg areas, the rear brake will be re-located to the handlebar, and no shifter will be needed.

September 10, 2009

New window stickers for electric vehicles, Kw/100 miles? the new MPG

Filed under: 1 — tonyhelms @ 4:07 am

I was reading the latest issue of “Automotive Engineering” magazine and i read an article about the factors in “Fuel Economy” ratings for electric vehicles. this is a very interesting subject because electric vehicles need to have a universal measuring unit for efficiency that needs to be understood by the general public.


our current system of MPG (miles per gallon) is a ratio of distance/1 gallon of gasoline. these are 2 very common units that are easily understood by anyone who had graduated from high school. therefore electric vehicle efficiency needs to be broken down to a simple to understand measuring system, similar to MPG. The EPA and US Department of Energy have collaborated to mandate a unit system for electric vehicles.

For all electric vehicles the calculation begins with the gasoline equivalent energy factor, we are going to do this by breaking down both one gallon of gasoline and 1 watt/hour of electricity to their simplest common units of energy units, or BTU’s.

(One BTU equates to the amount of energy needed to heat one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit)

therefore we can deduct that one gallon of gasoline equals 115,006 BTU, or 12,307 watt/hour per gallon. now any electric vehicle’s energy can be measured in output of watts, therefore we now have a common unit that can be measured very easily and converted to a “Equivalent MPG” notice the quotes because we have only converted it to a unit that can be easily understood by the basic public, because most people you ask will not understand what 36Kw/100 miles means.

So why are the numbers so high? well the Mini-e (the window sticker picture) has an estimated 102 MPG/94 MPG these numbers are calculated properly, electric vehicles are FAR more efficient with the energy usage then ANY other gasoline engine in existence. This has to do with many factors with gasoline engines that consume energy, the heat from the exhaust, coolant heat, block heat, parasitic drag of the hundreds of moving parts in the engine and transmission, shifting of multiple gears. These items use almost 85%-95% of the available BTU output of a properly operating gasoline engine, leaving only approximately 10% or less to actually move the vehicle down the road, this number decreases with cold weather, wear and age. Contrast this to electric vehicles which use about 75%-85% of there available BTU to move the vehicle down the road, this is so much higher because there is little to no heat waste, no transmission, no wasted between shift time, no “cold engine” problems, and usually only about a dozon or less total moving parts. This efficiency also does not count the oil changes, timing belts, spark plugs, head gaskets, coolant, of maintenance parts that dont even exist on an electric vehicle.

In a simple conclusion, these numbers do not lie. Electric vehicles are far more efficient and far simpler in design and will be the next generation of transportation. The next debate is going to be if the companies will be allowed to use these high “equivalent MPG” numbers towards their CAFE numbers (corporate average fuel economy) the US dept. of energy is still debating this subject.

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