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Discussion Starter #1
I'm keen to get an electric UTV for general field-care duties (towing a harrow, spreader and roller) but have a limited budget. And the vast majority of the Chinese electric UTVs/ATVs seem to use Lead Acid batteries of some sort, which I'm really not keen on.

So I'm wondering if I can pick up a cheap second-hand electric UTV in need of a new battery pack and replace the Pb battery with some form of Li-Ion/LiFePo ?

I realise a battery charger designed for Pb batteries won't do the job, and a BMS of some sort would be required to stop the battery going to an early death - but I think both should be do-able.

What says the "wisdom of the crowd"?
 

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Discussion Starter #3

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I have done a few Polaris Rangers. Taking them from 8 Trojans to 16 160ah lifepo4, saves about 100+kg and gives better performance. Financially it stacks up if you are looking for long term ownership, as the Lead lasts about 2 years and costs around £2.k to change and the Lifepo4 is about £4.5 and probably has a life of 10 years.
I do have some used Lifepo4 that would serve well, but its also issues like chargers and interfacing with the controller.
Currently I am developing a retrofit using 60v cell blocks that are from ex development / test packs from a UK manufacturer. These are a really high quality part and will be parallel linked to give the Ah required. This will work on the ranger as the voltage is within the controllers range, but may not be possible on others. This version will also require a new DC to DC (suitable units now in stock) and its on the upper charge limit of the original Deltaq charger. This will save even more weight, and have a higher discharge rate if called upon.
Many of the cheap Chinese units use a DC motor and so have brushes and a simpler controller, and some are a conversion on the original transmission rather than a dedicated unit like the Ranger. With the controller on the Ranger (and the JD Gator) it is possible to access and change the parameters so making them more adaptable. The ranger uses a sevcon controller the JD uses a curtis.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Many of the cheap Chinese units use a DC motor and so have brushes and a simpler controller, and some are a conversion on the original transmission rather than a dedicated unit like the Ranger. With the controller on the Ranger (and the JD Gator) it is possible to access and change the parameters so making them more adaptable. The ranger uses a sevcon controller the JD uses a curtis.
Would definitely go for something with an AC motor if going for new.

Was looking at a JD Gator TE with a knackered battery pack recently, so good to know the controller is adaptable.

Thanks for the input, @Grumpy-b
 
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