Might be the wrong thread, but it's the closest I could find listed. Has anyone looked into doing a full electric conversion on their truck? I've got a '78 F-100 Ranger Explorer with 302 and an auto tranny in it. Gas milage isn't great, but it's on par with the wife's TrailBlazer. Anyway, I've seen some people online that have converted S10s and Cherokees, and I was just wondering if anyone had considered it for the F series.
I'm still researching the idea myself. It looks plausible, but expensive (around $6k to $8k). I can put the batteries in the toolbox in the bed and run the lead under the cab. From there I just need to fab a support mount for the electric motor so I can bolt it up to the same spots my engine mounts to. Probably need to get something milled to get my motor to link up to the tranny, but that's about it. I can use the stock gas pedal to operate a speed controller/pot and away we go! At least, in theory that is...
The school I went to had a little honda something or another that was all electric and driven by a joystick. They had on the order of a dozen batteries and wired for 48v I believe. I was more interested in the joystick than the drive.
It was slow. The entire interior was replaced with TVs, stereos and fiberglass so it had a little weight. However, the conversion of watts I found here power conversion - converting units of power, horsepower, ps, kw, hp, bhp shows you need 149140 watts of electricity to create 200hp. At 12v that's 12429 amps, at 48v it's 3108 amps. That is just converting work, that is not taking into account a motors efficiency at converting watts to hp.
I used the 200hp, because your motor should be pretty close and you will be replacing a heavy motor with a heavy motor and a lot of batteries. To keep any acceleration you will still need a decent power to weight ratio. Also figure your automatic transmission will suck about 15hp off the top, if you have power steering, you will need a pump for that. AC compressors need spinning too, so that is another accessory motor. You will also need a vacuum pump for you power brake booster (I am pretty sure you have power brakes.)
I'll try to help you with any question i can make up an answer for, but this project will take a lot of planning before you will get it road ready.
Watts and horsepower both describe work done, so they are interchangeable. Cars in Australia are rated in kilowatts instead of horsepower. The efficiency in electric motors is turning electrical energy into kinetic energy. I think that's what you meant? Also, the nice thing about electric motors is that they supply nearly constant torque across their rpm band. Most electric cars don't have a transmission at all - the motor is connected directly to the differential.
You could get by with a single motor feeding the pinion on the rear end. There was an electric ranger I saw in MotorTrend in the late 90's configured like that. But the control system and regenerative braking would be quite advanced for the average person.
I think you would find real-world comparisons dont require an equal amount of power. A 185hp 302 only puts that out at close to 5000rpm and 99percent of the time you never use it. An electric motor of half that horsepower rating is probably more than enough for the average pickup. You are not considering pulling a big trailer or anything like that with it. Max torque at zero rpm is completely different than gasoline engine torque curves. I like the idea of ditching the tranny and driveshaft, just go directly for the rear axle. You may have to experiment with final drive ratios.
As far as selecting a voltage for the motor, higher is always better. 20 marine batteries wired in series feeding a 240 volt motor is what I'm thinking. Otherwise, high current will need big heavy wires and more waste heat. Motor controls are another matter. Golf cart type systems are pretty much on-off. You are going to need something that gives more precise control for street driving.
There are a number of hobbyists who have done this kind of thing here. The problem always is the batteries. If you're figuring lead acid, you'll need enough to equal the payload of your truck and then you'll only have about a 50 mile range. If you're figuring lighter batteries, you can do better, but your costs will be much higher. And just forget any attempt on a winter night in Chicago!
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