Just wanted to say hello. Been watching the forum for awhile and finally got around to registering. I have had really good luck with other auto projects with the help of forum members at other sites and I am sure that this site will be as rewarding as the others.
The first project is a 65 5 window that I just picked up a few weeks ago. The plans are to convert this to an EV. My work allows me access to a large quantity of free, lightly used VRLA batteries so the idea is to install either an AC or DC motor in place of the 6 cylinder and beef up the suspension/frame to support the battery weight. Currently looking at replacing the uni-body frame with a 2x3" tube frame and notching the rear so the truck can be lowered a little. Some 20x10 rear wheels and ??? front wheels to give it some attitude. Also looking at possibly using a Jaguar independant rear differential and a custom air bag setup. Will definately be throwing some questions on the forum about front suspension options.
The second project is a 65 3 window that will be a mid engine with transaxle. Again a slightly lowered truck with a Cobra 32 valve engine tied to ??? brand transaxle. This will be at least a year or two down the road but like my other projects I tend to always be thinking through designs/options and collecting parts until the project starts. Inputs are welcome - I expect there will be some responses about "grand ideas" so to those that wish to make them will just need to patiently wait and see the progress.
I look forward to being part of the econoline community and really look forward to input on projects, especially once I get some of the design ideas progressed into parts and start the work.
Nice to know that I am not alone in this insanity. Havent worked out all the details on the battery placement because it will greatly depends on what type of motor I run. The only constant right now is that I will be using 12V 78Ah VRLA batteries because I have a continuous supply of good used ones through work. I am looking at swapping the frame if I end up going with an AC motor because the voltages are typically higher than those of a DC motor and this will result in an increase in total battery weight. I would like to be able to build "saddle" shelves for the batteries that would fit over each fram rail and sit below the bed but again this depends on how many batteries I eventually need to support the motor. I am really pressing towards beefing up the frame and going with an AC motor so I can have some regenerative braking and just for the fact that the AC motors are so far advanced over the DC units.
Sounds like we are looking at very similar builds. I will keep you updated as well. I am still researching parts and design to meet my goals but it would be great to have another brain to bounce ideas off of. Have you ever built an EV before? I haven't myself but I work in the generator/UPS/Battery field so I am very familiar with inverters, DC power, wiring, etc.