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20KWH would be good for about 80 miles at a steady 40mph, I'd think...

What are you anticipating paying for your controller, then?

Is the wiring the same... ie a straight swap?

MW
400 quidish and yes its exactly the same wiring just a bit bigger and 600 amps instead of 400. I an thinking the same as you for range as well, It has a Zivan charger which has lithium settings but can be modified to suit
 

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still looking for a bonnet
There's one in a scrappers in Bolton:


I had all the guts out of the car last weekend, but the bonnet was still there.

As far as mine goes (it doesn't!) I can't find anything wrong, so I've removed the motor with a view to getting it tested. The motor I got from the car above is very stiff to turn, whereas the one I removed from mine spins really freely. Don't know what (if any) significance that holds?
 

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RIght then... this is why mine doesn't go anymore:

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I've written to the Italian firm who made these motors for Aixam to see if spares are available...
 

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Hello everyone. I recently bought a non-running 2012 mega van (e) and just came across this thread. I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s experienced difficulties with these vehicles!
Anyway, after replacing the traction battery, the main contactor and getting the charger refurbished, I’ve finally got the vehicle running without any error codes.
I took it for its first road test today and all seems fine....except for some strange noises! The noise is hard to explain but it sounds like it’s coming from the ev drive train? it sounds similar to binding disc brakes, which I know it can’t be as all four corners have been serviced and are running freely.
As the vehicle has been off the road for a while I’m wondering if there are any bearings in the motor or cv joints which could have seized up and need freeing? Or possibly drive gears that need lubricating.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated
 

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Hi Martin, thanks for the picture. It was long winter and the mega city just sat in the garage. Thanks to some sunshine and lockdown I have just dragged it outside and begun fault finding. First I plugged it into the charger and all I got was a flashing light on first bar left for a few hours and no change so unplugged it. Today i did the same again after checking the battery voltage each side and I was getting 5v on one side and 4V on the other. I plugged the charging cable in and this time on the dash the battery symbol is showing charging and the battery symbol lighting up in a sweeping motion as if to say it is actually charging today. The radio and electric windows are working as are the reversing sensors. No drive as yet, I have checked the voltage whilst plugged in and I am getting 13v at the batteries and ~50v across the contractor and the dc motor controller. I will leave it to charge for the rest of the day and see what happens. I have indicators too but no headlights currently.
Under the bonnet I have a connector just hanging there but nothing obvious to connect it too. Is this a diagnostic port? Everything looks stock and grimy. The car has done just under 10,000 miles. The batteries are haze branded and look quite clean but I have no idea if these are originals or replacements? The cost of new batteries is daunting but it would be great to upgrade to lithium if it's come down in price at all. Pictures below. Thanks in advance for any help and guidance.
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Tesla Model S, Ford Transit Flt Bed (Smiths), Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Vectrix VX-1, Aixam Mega City
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Discussion Starter #26
Hi,

1/ When first plugged in, the charger might have been trickle charging to raise the voltage up to a ‘safe’ level for bulk charging. Anyway, it sounds like it has done something, hopefully good. Unfortunately, I suspect having been sat so low for a long time will have killed one or more of them. Realistically, charge them up and see what range you have but if it is pants then you will have to - at least - replace one or more of the 12V batteries (and really, this is a false economy as you should do them all and keep any that have half-decent capacity for other projects, door stops etc) or, as you say, upgrade to lithium.

2/ I don’t understand what you mean by “…checking the battery voltage each side and I was getting 5v on one side and 4V on the other.” If you measure the voltage at the main contactor (as per my previous picture of the motor bay ’48V’) then a normal range would be 11V x 4 = 44V to 14V x 4 = 56V. If you want to measure the voltage of each bank of 3 parallel-connected 12V batteries then you need to access the terminals under the seats through the plastic covers - which is a total PITA. Or I suppose you could do it under the bonnet as each bank has a BMS sense wire that goes out to one of the connectors to the calculator. I’ve never explored this so I can’t help further, there.

3/ If you have 50V at the contactor, do you get the same voltage at the controller with the ignition on?

4/ When you turn on the ignition can you hear a ‘clack’ (main contactor closing) and does the motor cooling fan come on?

5/ With ignition on (or off), do you get any ‘morse code’ at either the car status LED (green and just below the ‘hanging loose’ connector in your first photo)?

6/ With ignition on (or off), do you get any ‘morse code’ at the controller status LED (yellow near the small Molex connector in the top of the controller)?

7/ If you have 12V to the 12V system then you should get headlights, too. Fuse and or bulbs U/S?

8/ Did you recharge the aux 12V battery yourself? It does it via a DC-DC converter when the ignition is on (another contactor connects 48V to the DC-DC converter when the ignition in on but one of mine has failed - fortunately I had a spare - they are fairly readily available on eBay). You should get 48V at the input when ignition is on and ~13.8V at the output. Monitor the DC-DC converter output for charging current of about 20A max (I think it’s a 300W one - 300W / 13V = 23A).

9/ The hanging loose' connector is for diagnostics but it is CANbus (I think - if not RS485) and as far as I am aware, there is nothing that us mere mortals can get hold of to make use of it. I am guessing it is used to re-program the 'calculator' (mostly the BMS - battery management system) and the charger... maybe.

10/ I would bet your batteries are not stock. Mine were (I think) and were Yuasa (IIRC). Yours look pretty naff, I’m afraid.

11/ On the matter of lithium, without quite a lot more technical info, I would be inclined to keep the car’s BMS fully involved with whatever Li pack you install. Trying to fool/bypass it and keep everything working is very difficult. The calculator keeps getting in the way. If you made up 4 lots of 12V and kept the basic BMS and connection layout the same, I would think you could keep everything happy. I would say that relying solely on the original BMS is probably going to be safe without the need to add another ‘per cell’ one. I think that would interfere with the original and cause problems.

If you stuck with LiFePO4 (at 3.2V per cell nominal and which are safe but less energy-dense than lithium polymer) then 4 cells would make a good exchange for the (3) lead-acid ones in each 12V section of the original pack (see diagram of the wiring of this below). They would reduce the weight by 50% (at least) and the volume similarly.

The 3.7Vnom of the LiPo types would work but the charger would stop significantly before they reached 100% charge (the Aixam charger stops at 61V). For 4 LiPO4 cells in series x 4 (again in series) x 3.85V (fully charged = 61.6V), 61V amounts to about 95% full - a good compromise as little-to-no danger of over-charging… and it will help to prolong cell life.

To get the same sort of range as the original set up (40 miles?) you would need ~60Ah cells. This is all very off-the-cuff! Grumy-B on the forum may be able to offer some more accurate estimations of range for a given Li pack size. I’ve no experience of running a e-City with a new lead pack.

Regards, Martin.

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