Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

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Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Rob Trahms
Hi all -
Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to work out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front where the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel racks, ala Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to proceed in building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and preferably lexan tops for visibility to the cells?  

I am considering simply talking to a local machine shop with my requirements/dimensions and see what they can provide, but wanted to check with y'all on things I should be mindful of before drafting up some specs.

Thanks,
Rob
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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roland Wiench
Hello Rob,

Go to a sheet metal shop that has a box brake.  It can bend the box out of
one piece with the sides folded up.  Two of the sides opposite sides are cut
1.5 inch wider and than each side has a 3/4 inch 90 degree lip that laps the
other two sides when its folded up.

Or if they do not have a box brake, then the bottom and two sides can be
bend into one piece and the other two sides are cut 1.5 inch wider and then
bend a 3/4 inch lip to overlap the other sides.

Some steel and metal supply yards can also cut and form this for you.

It is best to have some type of lip on the top edge to give the sides a
straight rigid form and for the cover to lay or hinge on.

I use to a lot of electrical enclosure and chassis work.  It is best to use
aluminum in the 0.080 thickness which can be use without put in additional
brake lines in it.

There are two ways to fasten the edges of the box together.  One is to use
large head mushroom 3/16 inch diameter by 3/8 inch long aluminum pot rivet
with a back up aluminum washer.  Put the smooth head of the pot rivet in the
inside of the box.

Another is to stitch weld the joints with aluminum solder.  If you never
done this before, go to a radiator shop and they can get you the solder and
show you how to do it.  You can weld large thick blocks of aluminum to a
paper thin sheet of aluminum and it will look like a heli-arc welder has
done it.









----- Original Message -----
From: "Rob Trahms" <[hidden email]>
To: <[hidden email]>
Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 3:36 PM
Subject: [EVDL] Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)


>
> Hi all -
> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to work
> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front where
> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel racks,
> ala
> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to proceed
> in
> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and preferably
> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?
>
> I am considering simply talking to a local machine shop with my
> requirements/dimensions and see what they can provide, but wanted to check
> with y'all on things I should be mindful of before drafting up some specs.
>
> Thanks,
> Rob
>
> -----
> Rob Trahms
> [hidden email]
> Electro - the Cabby-EV
> http://chaosmgmt.blogspot.com chaosmgmt.blogspot.com
>
> --
> View this message in context:
> http://www.nabble.com/Sheet-metal-battery-box-construction-%28for-LiFePO4s%29-tp23916107p23916107.html
> Sent from the Electric Vehicle Discussion List mailing list archive at
> Nabble.com.
>
> _______________________________________________
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>

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

EVDL Administrator
On 7 Jun 2009 at 16:57, Roland Wiench wrote:

> It is best to use aluminum in the 0.080 thickness ...

Over the years I've been surprised at the number of EV hobbyists who use
aluminum for battery boxes in steel-bodied vehicles.  Even Solectria, with
their staff of highly trained engineers, did this with their vehicles, so I
wonder if my thinking is off.

That thinking is that any time aluminum and steel meet, you have the
potential for electrolysis problems.  That would be especially true when
battery electrolyte might be involved,  no?

Thus, I've always figured that when the glider was steel, steel battery
boxes made more sense - even if the weight might be a wee bit higher.

Can someone explain why aluminum battery boxes are more desirable than steel
boxes, in steel-bodied vehicles?

David Roden
EVDL Administrator
http://www.evdl.org/


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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Douglas A. Stansfield
I used aluminum for my boxes and I have sealed lead acid batteries.  I
haven't found any problems using it with these batteries.

I like using aluminum as it is lighter and is far less stressful on my drill
bits.  

Sincerely;

Douglas A. Stansfield
President
www.TransAtlanticElectricConversions.com

973-875-6276 (office)
973-670-9208 (cell)





-----Original Message-----
From: [hidden email] [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf
Of EVDL Administrator
Sent: Sunday, June 07, 2009 8:23 PM
To: Electric Vehicle Discussion List
Subject: Re: [EVDL] Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

On 7 Jun 2009 at 16:57, Roland Wiench wrote:

> It is best to use aluminum in the 0.080 thickness ...

Over the years I've been surprised at the number of EV hobbyists who use
aluminum for battery boxes in steel-bodied vehicles.  Even Solectria, with
their staff of highly trained engineers, did this with their vehicles, so I
wonder if my thinking is off.

That thinking is that any time aluminum and steel meet, you have the
potential for electrolysis problems.  That would be especially true when
battery electrolyte might be involved,  no?

Thus, I've always figured that when the glider was steel, steel battery
boxes made more sense - even if the weight might be a wee bit higher.

Can someone explain why aluminum battery boxes are more desirable than steel

boxes, in steel-bodied vehicles?

David Roden
EVDL Administrator
http://www.evdl.org/


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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

tomw
In reply to this post by EVDL Administrator
I also thought it would form a galvanic couple, so I plan to use 16 gauge steel (~0.06").  I don't think it is a big issue, but there are other reasons to use steel.  It is much stronger than aluminum, doesn't fatigue as much from flexing or bending, box edges can be welded, and only weighs about 6 - 8 lb more per box (have to use thicker aluminum for strength).  

Tom

 
EVDL Administrator wrote
On 7 Jun 2009 at 16:57, Roland Wiench wrote:

> It is best to use aluminum in the 0.080 thickness ...

Over the years I've been surprised at the number of EV hobbyists who use
aluminum for battery boxes in steel-bodied vehicles.  Even Solectria, with
their staff of highly trained engineers, did this with their vehicles, so I
wonder if my thinking is off.

That thinking is that any time aluminum and steel meet, you have the
potential for electrolysis problems.  That would be especially true when
battery electrolyte might be involved,  no?

Thus, I've always figured that when the glider was steel, steel battery
boxes made more sense - even if the weight might be a wee bit higher.

Can someone explain why aluminum battery boxes are more desirable than steel
boxes, in steel-bodied vehicles?

David Roden
EVDL Administrator
http://www.evdl.org/


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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Lee Hart
In reply to this post by Douglas A. Stansfield
EVDL Administrator wrote:
> Can someone explain why aluminum battery boxes are more desirable
> than steel boxes, in steel-bodied vehicles?

Done right, aluminum is stronger than an equal weight of steel. This is
one reason you see aluminum boats and airplanes rather than steel.
Aluminum is also easier to cut, bend, and shape than steel.

But you are correct; mixing aluminum and steel is a bad idea. If the
joint between them ever becomes wet, especially with an electrolyte like
salt water or battery acid, the aluminum will corrode very quickly.

Thus, there is a natural effort to make the *entire* vehicle out of
aluminum, and not just a mix of steel and aluminum. For example, my
ComutaVan had aluminum battery boxes; but the entire frame was also
aluminum.

I think you could mix aluminum and steel if you were very careful to
insure that the seams between them never ever get wet. But, it is
certainly easier to just use steel if the rest of the vehicle is already
steel.
--
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget the perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in    --    Leonard Cohen
--
Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart_at_earthlink.net

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roger Heuckeroth
In reply to this post by Rob Trahms
Hi Rob,

I'm approaching the same point in my build.  I've been thinking about  
insulation and ventilation.

For ventilation (cooling) My testing showed that the temperature rise  
is minimal as long as the discharge rate is around 1C, or so.  In my  
case, I'm using a high voltage pack and therefore should not see high  
discharge current as the norm.  I'll probably average below 1C.  The  
cells I tested have an internal resistance of less than 2 mohm.  I'm  
not sure if Sky Energy is equivalent.

For insulation I live in NY.  It does get cold here, and the EV will  
probably not live in a garage, so I'm considering putting a layer of  
1/2" thick foam board type insulation.  I would go with thicker  
insulation, but I'm height limited in the battery box location.  I  
figure some insulation is better than none.  I don't think I'm going  
to put a heating mat or anything else in the box.

For wire runs I'm going to use conduit, so that is just a matter of  
punching out a hole in the right spot.

Roger

On Jun 7, 2009, at 6:36 PM, Rob Trahms wrote:

>
> Hi all -
> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to  
> work
> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front  
> where
> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel  
> racks, ala
> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to  
> proceed in
> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and  
> preferably
> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?
>
> I am considering simply talking to a local machine shop with my
> requirements/dimensions and see what they can provide, but wanted to  
> check
> with y'all on things I should be mindful of before drafting up some  
> specs.
>
> Thanks,
> Rob
>
> -----
> Rob Trahms
> [hidden email]
> Electro - the Cabby-EV
> http://chaosmgmt.blogspot.com chaosmgmt.blogspot.com
>
> --
> View this message in context: http://www.nabble.com/Sheet-metal-battery-box-construction-%28for-LiFePO4s%29-tp23916107p23916107.html
> Sent from the Electric Vehicle Discussion List mailing list archive  
> at Nabble.com.
>
> _______________________________________________
> General EVDL support: http://evdl.org/help/
> Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
> Archives: http://evdl.org/archive/
> Subscription options: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roger Heuckeroth
In reply to this post by Lee Hart

On Jun 7, 2009, at 8:59 PM, Lee Hart wrote:

> EVDL Administrator wrote:
>> Can someone explain why aluminum battery boxes are more desirable
>> than steel boxes, in steel-bodied vehicles?
>
> Done right, aluminum is stronger than an equal weight of steel. This  
> is
> one reason you see aluminum boats and airplanes rather than steel.
> Aluminum is also easier to cut, bend, and shape than steel.
>
> But you are correct; mixing aluminum and steel is a bad idea. If the
> joint between them ever becomes wet, especially with an electrolyte  
> like
> salt water or battery acid, the aluminum will corrode very quickly.
>
> Thus, there is a natural effort to make the *entire* vehicle out of
> aluminum, and not just a mix of steel and aluminum. For example, my
> ComutaVan had aluminum battery boxes; but the entire frame was also
> aluminum.
>
> I think you could mix aluminum and steel if you were very careful to
> insure that the seams between them never ever get wet. But, it is
> certainly easier to just use steel if the rest of the vehicle is  
> already
> steel.

If the steel is painted, and you use stainless steel fasteners, there  
should not be a problem.

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Lee Hart
Roger Heuckeroth wrote:
> If the steel is painted, and you use stainless steel fasteners, there  
> should not be a problem.

It's not the steel that corrodes; it's the aluminum. That will happen
whether you use stainless steel or not. The aluminum is the "sacrificial
anode" that corrodes away to "protect" the steel.

Paint might work; but it only takes a tiny chip or crack to allow the
corrosion to happen anyway.
--
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget the perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in    --    Leonard Cohen
--
Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart_at_earthlink.net

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Bob Rice-2

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lee Hart" <[hidden email]>
To: "Electric Vehicle Discussion List" <[hidden email]>
Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 10:15 AM
Subject: Re: [EVDL] Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)


> Roger Heuckeroth wrote:
>> If the steel is painted, and you use stainless steel fasteners, there
>> should not be a problem.
>
> It's not the steel that corrodes; it's the aluminum. That will happen
> whether you use stainless steel or not. The aluminum is the "sacrificial
> anode" that corrodes away to "protect" the steel.

   For sure! The dismaying dimise of crorroded Citi-Car aluminun battery
boxes scene at the First CitiCar Ralley last month!But, hell! the Citi's had
SURVIVED that long was no small miricle! I have sorta just given up with
corrosion anyhow, like tax increses, it isn't going away, anytime soon?! I
just scraped them clean with a slurry of baking soda , wire brush,snd
GREASED them with chassis grease. Jury's still out on this one, though.
Ain't pretty, but who CARES!? As my signature battery frames, not boxes, are
open construction and I frequently wash things down, to keep the batterys
clean, after all YOU bathe every day, too?Oh,Want it to look the best, at
least once a week, or before doing car shows?The paint brush, hose, sunny
day to dry stuff.Mikle O. bought some of the "Por" stuff to try. I thougt to
do the BOTTOMS of the battery racks?Where all the acid lives?

> Paint might work; but it only takes a tiny chip or crack to allow the
> corrosion to happen anyway.

   For Sure! The Rust Olium departs in shards of peeled paint!No contest!

    Seeya??

    Bob  ................REMINDER: NEEAA CLUB MEET THIS COMING SAT!

> Ring the bells that still can ring
> Forget the perfect offering
> There is a crack in everything
> That's how the light gets in    --    Leonard Cohen
> --
> Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart_at_earthlink.net
>
> _______________________________________________
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>

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roger Heuckeroth
In reply to this post by Lee Hart

On Jun 8, 2009, at 10:15 AM, Lee Hart wrote:

> Roger Heuckeroth wrote:
>> If the steel is painted, and you use stainless steel fasteners, there
>> should not be a problem.
>
> It's not the steel that corrodes; it's the aluminum. That will happen
> whether you use stainless steel or not. The aluminum is the  
> "sacrificial
> anode" that corrodes away to "protect" the steel.
>
> Paint might work; but it only takes a tiny chip or crack to allow the
> corrosion to happen anyway.

Not that I'm doubting you on the science, but I have hundreds of  
systems that I have designed and sold to wastewater treatment plants  
that typically have unpainted 60XX aluminum with 304/316 SS  
fasteners.  WWTPs have constant moisture and sulfuric acid present due  
to the oxidation of hydrogen sulfide gas (produced by wastewater  
digestion).  I've been doing this for almost 20 years, and have not  
had one problem with corrosion between stainless steel and aluminum.  
I have seen lots of things like large aluminum slide gates, aluminum  
ladders, handrails, grating, etc that are bolted with stainless steel  
fasteners at WWTPs.

I think the key is the size of the anode compared to the cathode.  
Even though there is a weak anodic reaction, if the aluminum is  
massive compared to the small stainless steel fastener, there is very  
little effect.  On the other hand if you had a large piece of  
stainless with small aluminum rivets, the rivets would fail rather  
quickly.

It could be also that the aluminum oxide coating that forms on the  
aluminum minimizes the long lasting effects of the reaction.

Either way, experience trumps theory on this one.

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roger Heuckeroth
In reply to this post by Bob Rice-2

On Jun 8, 2009, at 10:42 AM, Bob Rice wrote:

>
>
>> Roger Heuckeroth wrote:
>>> If the steel is painted, and you use stainless steel fasteners,  
>>> there
>>> should not be a problem.
>>
>> It's not the steel that corrodes; it's the aluminum. That will happen
>> whether you use stainless steel or not. The aluminum is the  
>> "sacrificial
>> anode" that corrodes away to "protect" the steel.
>
>   For sure! The dismaying dimise of crorroded Citi-Car aluminun  
> battery
> boxes scene at the First CitiCar Ralley last month!But, hell! the  
> Citi's had
> SURVIVED that long was no small miricle! I have sorta just given up  
> with
> corrosion anyhow, like tax increses, it isn't going away, anytime  
> soon?! I
> just scraped them clean with a slurry of baking soda , wire brush,snd
> GREASED them with chassis grease. Jury's still out on this one,  
> though.
> Ain't pretty, but who CARES!? As my signature battery frames, not  
> boxes, are
> open construction and I frequently wash things down, to keep the  
> batterys
> clean, after all YOU bathe every day, too?Oh,Want it to look the  
> best, at
> least once a week, or before doing car shows?The paint brush, hose,  
> sunny
> day to dry stuff.Mikle O. bought some of the "Por" stuff to try. I  
> thougt to
> do the BOTTOMS of the battery racks?Where all the acid lives?

Bob,

I think that corrosion was more due to all the acid leakage from the  
lead acid batteries, not the galvanic reaction between steel and  
aluminum.  Also, if the Citi-Car used steel boxes they probably would  
have faired even worse that the aluminum.  Don't ya think?

Roger

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

EVDL Administrator
In reply to this post by Roger Heuckeroth
On 8 Jun 2009 at 10:54, Roger Heuckeroth wrote:

> npainted 60XX aluminum with 304/316 SS  fasteners.  ... have not  had
> one problem with corrosion

My concern isn't the stainless steel and the aluminum, it's the steel in the
vehicle body vs. the aluminum of the battery box.  I think that's probably  
different from your situation.

David Roden - Akron, Ohio, USA
EVDL Administrator

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Rick Beebe
In reply to this post by Rob Trahms
Rob Trahms wrote:
> Hi all -
> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to work
> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front where
> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel racks, ala
> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to proceed in
> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and preferably
> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?  

I like the idea of the polypropylene boxes that Electro Automotive uses
now. Non-conductive, non-corrosive, relatively light weight.

--Rick

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roger Heuckeroth
In reply to this post by EVDL Administrator

On Jun 8, 2009, at 12:08 PM, EVDL Administrator wrote:

> On 8 Jun 2009 at 10:54, Roger Heuckeroth wrote:
>
>> npainted 60XX aluminum with 304/316 SS  fasteners.  ... have not  had
>> one problem with corrosion
>
> My concern isn't the stainless steel and the aluminum, it's the  
> steel in the
> vehicle body vs. the aluminum of the battery box.  I think that's  
> probably
> different from your situation.

In most cases the aluminum would not be touching bare steel.  The  
steel is painted, or should be painted.  The only intimate contact is  
the fastener.

In my particular instance, I am cutting out a square hole in the body  
in the location under the truck where the spare tire was located.  It  
is also taking up some room where the gas tank and muffler used to  
be.  I then plan on reinforcing this cut out by welding steel  
stiffeners into the corners and any other week spots.  Then the  
battery box which will be 100% aluminum will fit in from the bottom.  
The battery box will have a flange made up of 2"x2"x 0.25" aluminum  
angle all around the top perimeter.  This flange will be drilled out  
with a matching bolt hole pattern in the car body.  All the cut and  
drilled edges on the car body will be coated with a zinc rich primer  
and then painted to match the body color.  I will also use a 1/8" foam  
rubber gasket between the aluminum box and the car body.  Then  
stainless steel fasteners will hold the box in place.

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Rob Trahms
In reply to this post by Rick Beebe
True - non-conductive is always a plus, and I do like the ElectroAuto poly box for the rear pack.
Any ideas where one would order custom polypropylene boxes?
Rob


Rick Beebe wrote
Rob Trahms wrote:
> Hi all -
> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to work
> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front where
> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel racks, ala
> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to proceed in
> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and preferably
> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?  

I like the idea of the polypropylene boxes that Electro Automotive uses
now. Non-conductive, non-corrosive, relatively light weight.

--Rick

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

SLPinfo.org
I know that Kyle Dansie in Salt Lake City  http://www.evalbum.com/2058 has
started making and selling them specifically for battery enclosures.
Contact him.

- Peter Flipsen Jr

On Tue, Jun 9, 2009 at 6:57 PM, Rob Trahms <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> True - non-conductive is always a plus, and I do like the ElectroAuto poly
> box for the rear pack.
> Any ideas where one would order custom polypropylene boxes?
> Rob
>
>
>
> Rick Beebe wrote:
> >
> > Rob Trahms wrote:
> >> Hi all -
> >> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
> >> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
> >> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to
> work
> >> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front
> >> where
> >> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel racks,
> >> ala
> >> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to proceed
> >> in
> >> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and
> >> preferably
> >> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?
> >
> > I like the idea of the polypropylene boxes that Electro Automotive uses
> > now. Non-conductive, non-corrosive, relatively light weight.
> >
> > --Rick
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > General EVDL support: http://evdl.org/help/
> > Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
> > Archives: http://evdl.org/archive/
> > Subscription options: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
> >
> >
> >
>
>
> -----
> Rob Trahms
> [hidden email]
> Electro - the Cabby-EV
> http://chaosmgmt.blogspot.com chaosmgmt.blogspot.com
>
> --
> View this message in context:
> http://www.nabble.com/Sheet-metal-battery-box-construction-%28for-LiFePO4s%29-tp23916107p23953822.html
> Sent from the Electric Vehicle Discussion List mailing list archive at
> Nabble.com.
>
> _______________________________________________
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> Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Chris
In reply to this post by Rob Trahms
Try usplastic.com
I don't think they do custom stuff but they have all sorts of tanks and containers you may be able to adapt. I used them for a both a water injection tank  and a 1250 gallon rain water collection tank.

Stub
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

-----Original Message-----
From: Rob Trahms <[hidden email]>

Date: Tue, 9 Jun 2009 17:57:05
To: <[hidden email]>
Subject: Re: [EVDL] Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)



True - non-conductive is always a plus, and I do like the ElectroAuto poly
box for the rear pack.
Any ideas where one would order custom polypropylene boxes?
Rob



Rick Beebe wrote:

>
> Rob Trahms wrote:
>> Hi all -
>> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
>> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
>> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to work
>> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front
>> where
>> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel racks,
>> ala
>> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to proceed
>> in
>> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and
>> preferably
>> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?  
>
> I like the idea of the polypropylene boxes that Electro Automotive uses
> now. Non-conductive, non-corrosive, relatively light weight.
>
> --Rick
>
> _______________________________________________
> General EVDL support: http://evdl.org/help/
> Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
> Archives: http://evdl.org/archive/
> Subscription options: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>
>
>


-----
Rob Trahms
[hidden email]
Electro - the Cabby-EV
http://chaosmgmt.blogspot.com chaosmgmt.blogspot.com

--
View this message in context: http://www.nabble.com/Sheet-metal-battery-box-construction-%28for-LiFePO4s%29-tp23916107p23953822.html
Sent from the Electric Vehicle Discussion List mailing list archive at Nabble.com.

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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Adrian DeLeon
In reply to this post by Rob Trahms
If you're near a large town there's probably a local plastics place that  
can fabricate polypropylene (PP) boxes for you. The two I had made weren't  
cheap ($426 for an 8 battery box and a 3 battery box), and I had to drive  
2 hours to pick them up :(

Even locally (population 26,000) there was a shop that would sell me 1/4"  
thick ABS and polyethylene (PE) sheets.

DIY boxes from ABS are easy to make. Cut the sheets with a table saw,  
circular saw, reciprocating saw, etc. Smear some of that wonderful  
smelling black goo on each side and clamp them together. Rub more goo into  
the joints to make them stronger. Fill holes and scratches by making thick  
"sludge" from ABS glue (solvent) and ABS shavings.

The 1/4" sheets I got were smooth on one side and had a dashboard-like  
texture on the other. If you heat the smooth side with a heat gun it will  
develop a remarkably similar texture :) Leftover pieces can be heated and  
bent into mounting brackets, etc.

You can even weld plumbing ABS and PVC parts to your boxes. If using PVC,  
make sure you use the special ABS/PVC solvent.

-Adrian

On Tue, 09 Jun 2009 17:57:05 -0700, Rob Trahms wrote:

>
> True - non-conductive is always a plus, and I do like the ElectroAuto  
> poly
> box for the rear pack.
> Any ideas where one would order custom polypropylene boxes?
> Rob
>
>
>
> Rick Beebe wrote:
>>
>> Rob Trahms wrote:
>>> Hi all -
>>> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
>>> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a form
>>> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have to  
>>> work
>>> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front
>>> where
>>> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel  
>>> racks,
>>> ala
>>> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to  
>>> proceed
>>> in
>>> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and
>>> preferably
>>> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?
>>
>> I like the idea of the polypropylene boxes that Electro Automotive uses
>> now. Non-conductive, non-corrosive, relatively light weight.
>>
>> --Rick
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> General EVDL support: http://evdl.org/help/
>> Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
>> Archives: http://evdl.org/archive/
>> Subscription options: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>>
>>
>>
>
>
> -----
> Rob Trahms
> [hidden email]
> Electro - the Cabby-EV
> http://chaosmgmt.blogspot.com chaosmgmt.blogspot.com
>


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Re: Sheet metal battery box construction (for LiFePO4s)

Roger Heuckeroth
In reply to this post by Rob Trahms
Rob,

Where are you located?  I could help you out with this.  My company  
does plastic bending and welding all the time.  PE, PP, ABS, PVC, etc.  
are no problem.  I'm in NY, so if your far away the shipping cost  
could add up, though.

Roger

On Jun 9, 2009, at 8:57 PM, Rob Trahms wrote:

>
> True - non-conductive is always a plus, and I do like the  
> ElectroAuto poly
> box for the rear pack.
> Any ideas where one would order custom polypropylene boxes?
> Rob
>
>
>
> Rick Beebe wrote:
>>
>> Rob Trahms wrote:
>>> Hi all -
>>> Concerning the eventual move to LiFePO4 batteries in my current EV
>>> conversion (a VW cabby having 16 6V floodies), I am considering a  
>>> form
>>> factor like Sky Energy's prismatic cells, and I think I will have  
>>> to work
>>> out some sort of sheet metal box construction, at least in the front
>>> where
>>> the current lead acid batteries are simply bolted into open steel  
>>> racks,
>>> ala
>>> Electro Auto's Voltsrabbit design.  Any suggestions about how to  
>>> proceed
>>> in
>>> building these boxes, with consideration for cabling in/out and
>>> preferably
>>> lexan tops for visibility to the cells?
>>
>> I like the idea of the polypropylene boxes that Electro Automotive  
>> uses
>> now. Non-conductive, non-corrosive, relatively light weight.
>>
>> --Rick
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> General EVDL support: http://evdl.org/help/
>> Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
>> Archives: http://evdl.org/archive/
>> Subscription options: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>>
>>
>>
>
>
> -----
> Rob Trahms
> [hidden email]
> Electro - the Cabby-EV
> http://chaosmgmt.blogspot.com chaosmgmt.blogspot.com
>
> --
> View this message in context: http://www.nabble.com/Sheet-metal-battery-box-construction-%28for-LiFePO4s%29-tp23916107p23953822.html
> Sent from the Electric Vehicle Discussion List mailing list archive  
> at Nabble.com.
>
> _______________________________________________
> General EVDL support: http://evdl.org/help/
> Usage guidelines: http://evdl.org/help/index.html#conv
> Archives: http://evdl.org/archive/
> Subscription options: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>

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