I’d say this is a fair point to start detailing the experience I’m having converting the Sprite into an electric vehicle. The weather is changing, parts have come in the mail, I’ve got diagrams and schematics all lined up and ready, and all I need is the time and money to follow through with everything I’ve thought about thus far. Here goes.
I moved the sprite into the garage recently and I’ve got to say it has been one of the easiest cars to work on that I’ve ever had the pleasure of being around! Everything is right there. You want to remove the exhaust manifold? There’s the bolts –right there. How about separating the engine from the transmission? You can almost get all the bolts from reaching into the engine bay from above. What a dream! And accordingly, it took no time dropping the gas tank, exhaust, removing the engine and peripherals, and leaving myself with a shell that’s ready for conversion.
The next steps are making an adapter plate for the AC-35 motor to mount to, and a custom coupler to fit between the transmission spline and the electric motor. To figure out my dimensions for the adapter, I took off a separator plate and drew around the outside with sharpie. I picked up dimensions as best I could from the plate itself, and then double checked and filled in the gaps by measuring the transmission itself, basing everything around the central shaft. I’ve mocked it up in CAD and am ready to use OSHCUT or some similar service to get a prototype made! In the meantime, I’ll have to take measurements off the spline on the clutch plate and figure out how to couple the spline to the motor in a way that won’t put undue stress on either of the parts.
I’m also gearing up now for what will amount to the largest purchase I’ve ever made. Although, of course, it will be split up into smaller chunks, but all the electronics and batteries are going to be one whopping bill. I’m trying to get everything I can in order before I pull the trigger, and most likely that will be after the holiday season!
I’m thinking of also making the main electronics box while waiting for the time to be right to purchase everything. I’ve got most of the small stuff ready to be put together. All I lack right now is the motivation to go ahead and get it done, unfortunately. There’s just so many other things I’m focusing on currently that make it difficult to set the time aside for! For example, flying and my grad course eat up tremendous amounts of my time. But, I’m nearing the end of both of those!
So right now is a time to remain optimistic about the project, and to get everything in order before the sprint!