Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Technical discussion on converting internal combustion to electric
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Johny
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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Thu, 21 May 2009, 22:48

My donor has a Jaguar style fuel filler mounted at the top of the rear left wing.
I already have a 3 pin plug that fits perfectly in the internal hole but my thinking is it would be quite stupid for me to use this as the power inlet. I can't imagine attempting to plug in during pooring rain and not getting shocked or tripping the RCD in the switchboard.
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There is a "moat" and drain hose internally around the plug so it wouldn't fill up with water but I can't see any way of using it.
I can post more pictures (of the internals of the fuel filler) if anyone can see any hope.

Since we are about to do a respray, the fuel filler is destined to be be removed permanently and we will mount a standard 15 Amp caravan inlet at the rear of the car (most likely colour coded to the car).

I just thought I'd post this in case anyone has any better ideas/lateral thoughts.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Thalass » Thu, 21 May 2009, 22:58

An external style power point Should be waterproof enough when closed and with the plug in, too. Though if you sit there with it open and exposed to the rain you might get a zap.

Maybe if you get a right-angle extension cord you might be able to close the lid over the plug while it's plugged in. It wouldn't be perfect, but it would be better than nothing.
I'll drive an electric vehicle one day.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by woody » Thu, 21 May 2009, 23:09

If you can move the filler cap to a vertical surface at the rear it may look nicer than a caravan plug :-)

There are those waterproof covers like 3 phase have which may be an alternative to moving it.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Tritium_James » Thu, 21 May 2009, 23:13

The charger plug on the Porsche is under the number plate, which is hinged along the top edge. So when you're plugged in, as well as the normal plastic lid of the outdoor socket, you get a 2nd 'roof' over it from the number plate, which helps even more to keep rain out.

Plus you can't see an ugly socket when you're driving, the plate covers it all up. Quite a nice solution if you're going to be doing bodywork or moving things around anyway.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by woody » Thu, 21 May 2009, 23:24

Tritium_James wrote: the number plate, which is hinged along the top edge.
Tritium James Bond ?

Much nicer to hide it away I think :-)
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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Thu, 21 May 2009, 23:33

Thanks for the comments everyone.
The number plate is mounted on the boot lid so that is ruled out. There is a nice free space at the right and left of the boot lid that will easily fit whatever I decide to do.
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Woody, you are right - I could use the filler on a vertical surface but it was not designed to be waterproof as the internal sealer plug handles water. That is definitely a consideration though, and I have a feeling that the hole for the existing filler is smaller than an IP35 caravan inlet so I could try that first without any repercussions.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by EV2Go » Fri, 22 May 2009, 00:05

what about behind a hinged indicator, when I was really really young, there was a car made that had a chrome surround and it flipped sideways to reveal the fuel tank filler underneath. Can't remember what the car was but it is doable.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by bga » Fri, 22 May 2009, 17:36

Why not abandon the Aussie 3 pin plug and put a custom end on an extension cord? I'm thinking of a MIL type or underwater connector, these are good until the subject of price gets mentioned, fortunately the EV only needs one.

Maybe RS/Farnell/Newark/Mouser?

My sister used to live in Edmonton Canada, where it gets so bl***y cold that cars are plugged in on winter nights (battery and oil heaters) so they'll start the next day. I saw a lot of extension cords coiled up on plastic reels on the front of the cars. No sense of fashion there.

Edit : afterthought
Moving the entry makes sense. The wires are easier to route than a filler neck. You can leave the old one there for posterity with a note saying "stop fuelling around" in place of the filler hole.

A hinged license plate? It made a lousy fuel filler on Holdens, but electrons don't mind going up hill.
Last edited by bga on Fri, 22 May 2009, 07:42, edited 1 time in total.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Squiggles » Fri, 22 May 2009, 18:15

About a million years ago I had a Datsun 1000 coupe, it had the neatest little set up. The lock on the back panel, turn key clockwise and the boot opened, turn key anti clockwise and the number plate hinged down revealing the fuel filler. About the cleverest thing the Japanese ever did with a car.



edit: By the way, always remember that farnell will cost about three times true market rate. RS is not as bad but still pricey.
Last edited by Squiggles on Fri, 22 May 2009, 08:17, edited 1 time in total.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Fri, 22 May 2009, 18:25

Yes, I had looked at the alternatives on Farnell and others.
I have actually found a 3 pin good quality plug that fits in the filler opening like a "bum in a bucket". Just the tiniest bit of glue and I'd never get it out again.
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Woody's idea of mounting this vertically on the rear of the car just above the right reversing light is my favourite at the moment. The 3 pin plug pins clear the chrome lid quite easily. There is no sealing gasket on the lid but I think I could do something there.
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Without the filler stopper or my plug. Note the "moat" around the are where my plug goes.
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The back. You can see the drain spout that you connect the drain hose to.
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Edit: Typo "bit to it"
Last edited by Johny on Fri, 22 May 2009, 08:33, edited 1 time in total.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Fri, 22 May 2009, 18:29

BTW Sorry about the terrible photos. I took them with my 1.3Mp phone then I reduced the jpeg quality before I scaled them down - mistake. I'm at work so I don't want to take them again.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Fri, 22 May 2009, 18:40

This is one alternative I mentioned earlier - colour coded to the car's paint.
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I tend to think it would look better than the chrome filler which may just push the chrome look over the edge. (The photos above have all the car's trim removed ready to go to the painter).

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by woody » Fri, 22 May 2009, 19:47

Cheezy, but what about leave it where it is and have a reasonable extension cord on a retractable reel feeding out through the fuel hole?
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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by woody » Fri, 22 May 2009, 19:50

Oh, you could loose one or both of the reversing lights, separate reversing lights weren't required until late 70s, use the indicators instead. The Cortina has none at all (optional).

So put the Chrome cap in the hole left by one of the reversing lights.

Of course, you may want 2 reversing lights, reversing the Cortina in the dark is tricky.
Last edited by woody on Fri, 22 May 2009, 10:03, edited 1 time in total.
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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Fri, 22 May 2009, 20:03

The retractable extension cord is interesting but how do I stop deluging rain filling up the boot via the filler hole during recharge?

The other option is leave it where it is and use the plug I found that fits. I have seen extension cords (socket end) that have an outer sleevy thing that may just slide over the lip and deflect water into the moat.
If it doesn't work then go the retractable.

Trouble is, I miss the opportunity to have the filler hole patched over for free during the respray if I don't do it now.

Oh. I like my reversing lights - they work really well and we have a long dark driveway so I don't want to remove one. Image

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by fuzzy-hair-man » Fri, 22 May 2009, 20:20

Johny wrote: The retractable extension cord is interesting but how do I stop deluging rain filling up the boot via the filler hole during recharge?
Could you file the side out of the filler housing so you have a groove to set the extension cord in and then close the cap? you could put a rubber grommet or something in the filed out bit to stop it wearing through.
Johny wrote: The other option is leave it where it is and use the plug I found that fits. I have seen extension cords (socket end) that have an outer sleevy thing that may just slide over the lip and deflect water into the moat.
If it doesn't work then go the retractable.

Trouble is, I miss the opportunity to have the filler hole patched over for free during the respray if I don't do it now.
So grab the garden hose and go see how well it works Image

BTW was there anything stopping you running electrical cord up through the bootlid from the numberplate to where ever the charger is? or would required conduit or something make it messy or difficult?

My other idea was to put the plug up the old exhaust pipe Image

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Fri, 22 May 2009, 20:30

fuzzy-hair-man wrote:So grab the garden hose and go see how well it works
OK, since I have this spare fuel cap/inlet (that's a spare I photographed), I'll keep it in the car and check for fit wherever I see these extension cords sold. I have a few week to decide before the primer goes on.

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Horizontal Fuel Cap as Power Inlet

Post by Johny » Sat, 23 May 2009, 16:48

Missing trim but that's vaguely the look with the standard fuel filler mounted on the rear where it's convenient for plugging in.
(I'll get it more vertical when it's really mounted - the blutak slipped)
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