Bob's Electric Vehicle

Updated 10/29/05


This is our electric car. I did the 1985 Chev S-10 conversion myself. The car has a 9" Advanced DC motor, a Curtis 500 amp controller, 24 Trojan T-105 batteries for a total of 144 volts, and a K&W charger.



The donor car was purchased for $1600, The removal of all the internal combustion engine parts took about a week. All unnecessary parts were removed to maximize weight savings.

I built the adapter plate by placing the bell housing onto a piece of steel, and marking the bolt holes, and outline, and cutting it out to fit, After carefully measuring the distance from the motor shaft to the motor mounting surface, the adapter to connect the motor to the flywheel was fabricated from a taperlock bushing.

8 batteries were sandwiched into the front of the truck above the motor . This area had less that 1" of vertical clearance for installation of the batteries, necessitating a multi level rack to clear the sloping hood. The tray was bolted to the structural members of the truck. The rest of the batteries mount in the rear under the bed..    

The cable used to hook up the batteries was 2/0 welding cable with crimp ends.  

Range is in the area of 30 miles per charge, but with careful driving, could be extended more. The original controller purchased for the car was a Curtis 1221B with a 400 amp rating at 120v. I wanted regenerative braking, so I purchased the Zapi 800 amp controller. Initial problems with the Zapi caused it to "smoke" . While the Zapi was being repaired, I traded the 1221B Curtis in for a 1231C 500 amp 144v controller. The Zapi immediately made the 400 amp main fuse go "zzzzPoof". The installation of a 550 amp fuse corrected that problem

The power brakes are supplied with vacuum from a Gast vacuum pump. The 12 volt accessories are powered by a Sevcon DC-DC converter. The charger is a K&W 144 volt charger. Total cost of the car ran about $7000 not including purchasing the additional controller.

These days, it appears that the electric vehicle was a timely project, looking at the current cost of gasoline. It costs me approximately $20-$25 per month to charge the batteries. The winner for the most asked question is "Is that thing really electric?", but a close runner up is "How fast can you go?". I tell them that I had it up to 75 mph, but that was as fast as I cared to go on a city street between stoplights.

The next time somebody tells you that electric vehicles won't work, give them the URL to this page. I have been driving this car for over a year as of June 1996.  It is now September 2005.

Many thanks go to Ken Koch, at KTA Services, (909) 949-7914 (motor, Curtis controller, charger, DC-DC converter) and Gary Flo at InnEVations, 707-933-0871, 707-933-0872 FAX, or, or (Zapi controller and contactors) for their friendly help and information.


Here is a detail of the end of the motor with the power steering pully drive and tachometer disk.



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Want more info, send email to Bob Taylor ( (remove the nospam from the email address, I put it in there to stop the internet robots from harvesting my email address for spam)