clutch and springs in SA

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drowe67
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by drowe67 »

Hi Guys,

My baby EV Charade has a problem with the clutch slipping, in particular in 3rd gear. Squealing sound under modest acceleration and a burning smell. We took it out yesterday and I think that it is in reasonable condition, so I may need a stronger clutch. It was OK with the ICE but I guess an electric motor pulling 2nd or 3rd from 0 revs is putting a bit more torque on it. Any thoughts on the problem or suggestions on where to get a better clutch?

Also I think I may need new springs to cope with all the lead. It is quite rough over road bumps and is a little low. Any ideas on who to use in Adelaide?

Thanks,

David
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DVR
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by DVR »

If the clutch was OK before the conversion I would say that it's unlikely that it's thrown in the towel now. It may be that you have a spacing problem with your adapter plate. The positioning of the clutch plate in relation to the pressure plate and flywheel is critical. I would re-check it. If that's OK then you may indeed need a heavy duty clutch, but I must say that I've never heard of this problem before with the sort of power your running.


So long and thanks for all the fish.
drowe67
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by drowe67 »

The pressure plate is bolted to the original flywheel with the clutch plate in the middle, so the whole assembly (and spacing) is unchanged from the ICE.

I think the adapter plate spacing just changes the distance to the thrust bearing. That (I think) would affect clutch disengagement/engagement, and we did have to adjust the clutch cable linkage a little. However my mechanic seemed to think this was set up OK.

I have pulled out the clutch and had it checked out - it's a little worn but still reasonable so it's not the actual state of this clutch.

I have done a little more research. Found several other Electric Charades appear to have seriously upgraded their clutch (evalbum 153 and 749). The torque of my X91-4001 motor is 140 foot-pounds or around 190 Nm, nearly twice the standard Charade max torque of 105 Nm. Pulling 3rd at much lower revs that the ICE, so I guess much higher torque.

I took it all down to AG clutch today at Wingfield and they are building a new clutch to match the available torque for $350. A Nissan pressure plate, machining the flywheel, new clutch plate and thrust bearing. They said the available torque was similar to that of a modern 2.0 litre ICE engine.

Cheers,

David

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DVR
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by DVR »

Souds like a good price for a custom clutch. Still, I've never head a clutch "squeal" when slipping before. That's not normal even for a knackered clutch.


So long and thanks for all the fish.
CometBoy
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by CometBoy »

David,

I agree with checking the so called “Magic Number” - the distance between the back of the old ICE motor block to the rearmost flat surface of the flywheel...

Sounds like you might be a bit short on this dimension?

Having said that, In my view, replacing the clutch, pressure plate and thrust bearing is the way to go during a conversion anyway. Also upgrading to a heavy duty pressure plate is certainly desirable.

Good luck

Bruce
drowe67
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by drowe67 »

Hi Guys,

I measured the magic number again. It's about 7.9mm on the ICE and 8.3mm between equivalent surfaces between the adapter plate & coupler.

I might have overstated the "squeal" noise - it was actually rather hard to hear over the other motor/road noises, I didn't hear it until my mechanic pointed it out. Might have been the motor revving as the clutch slipped. The smell, however, was hard to miss.....

I picked up the fancy new clutch assembly last night, in the end it cost $300 which was a nice surprise as they had quoted $350. Now I am struggling to fit the little wire clip for the new thrust bearing! The clutch guys said it was a 30 second job and here I am 1.5 hr later messing around. Sigh, I am a mechanical slow learner. But I will get there!

Cheers,

David
drowe67
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by drowe67 »

After finally conquering the thrust bearing clip (I was putting it in upside down!) I have fitted the new clutch and put everything back together. The new clutch is better, I don't think it's slipping in third any more but it's still slipping in 2nd if I push it hard.

I think the problem might be coming down to my choice of motor. Surprisingly, the motor data suggests the X91-4001 has more torque in the 400-600A range than an 8 inch motor. However I have it fitted to a car with a small clutch plate. Details on a post to the EVDL list.

Anyway I think it will be usable for normal driving, and hopefully will wear in a little with use. Hmmmm, I wonder if I should be wearing the new clutch in some how? Like maybe taking off like an ICE vehicle using the clutch from stand still?

Next step is to make this $#% vacc pump a bit quieter, might try relocating it in the car.

Cheers,

David
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by Goombi »

What EV motor are you using?

Vacuum pumps run quieter once its on load--when it runs free and no resistance the noise is higher.. you can enclose it in a plastic box with some insulation make sure you have some air in and out
drowe67
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by drowe67 »

Advanced DC X91-4001. Yes I have made some progress with the vac pump. I mounted it on some foam on the lower half of the ICE air cleaner box, help in place by a fasty strap (to avoid metallic contact with the car body). Only problem is the mounting is a bit flakey, I feel it needs to be a little more robust.

BTW re springs I am going to try the wreckers rather than getting custom springs made up.
Goombi
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by Goombi »

There are electrical Boxes available either from plastic or alloy at domestic at industrial electrical supplies.
Re Springs. The back seat is the most proper area to place your batteries. The charade was designed to carry the weight there-- like 3 people @ 75 kg= 225kg = 6-8 batteries this area places proportioned weight distribution to the front and the back-- If batteries are behind the rear axle the car will not ride terribly well it will sway.. and therefore the maximum load will be placed on your springs. I have sacrificed the rear seat in order to ballance the vehicle which in fact was done by the manufacturer.I am of a strong opinion that EV is not suppose to be used as a TAXI or to carry full car of people and the batteries .
Your Charade is much the same as my Suzuki Barina and I have chosen the batteries instead of pasengers. After all we intend to use these cars for commuting with restrictions in mind. EV's have a control over the driver. Have learned this from my electric scooter It will take you where you want--- BUT in its own time and in its own way. I am sure you will solve your spring problem.. but keep my idea in mind
Last edited by Goombi on Thu, 04 Sep 2008, 04:24, edited 1 time in total.
drowe67
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clutch and springs in SA

Post by drowe67 »

Thanks Goombi I hadn't considered weight distribution - good point. It was such a big challenge just squeezing the 12 D31 yellow Tops batteries in anywhere in the car!

I have 7 batteries just behind the rear axle. Also 5 up the front so the overall weight distribution is pretty even. No obvious vices in handling but I am just driving easy. It drives OK but needs to be raised all round (front is low too), so moving the rear batteries forward might not help the overall height.

Over time I will experiment with the batteries, perhaps try 10 rather than 12 and see how that goes for range.

I am enjoying working on the springs, it's an area of the car I haven't worked on before and has it's own challenges. Just loosening the nuts around the suspension has taken my a few days - they are so tight!

Like you say EVs tend to encourage a certain driving style, and I feel no need to accelerate at ICE rates or go faster than 60 km/hr around town.

My payload is 2 adults or 1 adult plus 3 kids so I wanted to keep the rear seat. My understanding (from talking to the Dept of Transport) is that in SA they don't restrict the number of passengers based on curb wieght, they just want you to stay below GVM.

Five seats also interests me as it's a little different from most other Charade conversions that tend to be 2 seaters. Fun to experiment if you know what I mean.

Cheers,

David
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