- Paperback: 327 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill/TAB Electronics; 2 edition (September 23, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0071543732
- ISBN-13: 978-0071543736
- Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (96 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #863,347 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Build Your Own Electric Vehicle 2nd Edition
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The advantages of electric vehicles (EVs) are well-known: nonpolluting operation, a renewable power source, safety, and low cost of operation. The disadvantages include limitations on speed, operating range, and convenience as well as the high cost of converting existing vehicles to electric operation; while acknowledging such other disadvantages as lack of effective heating, air conditioning, and power steering, EV advocate Brant says some of the best-known ones are myths. Speed, for instance, is related to body weight, and less weight means more speed. (Weight is, however, also a factor in safety: lighter weight often means less safety, especially in collisions, and Brant doesn't mention the collision factor.) Brant provides comprehensive instruction in converting a vehicle to electric power. It is not for the casual hobbyist, though, as is evident in such features as formulas for divining the potential top-end speeds of specific EVs--a precise system to answer questions of speed, but hardly the simple ballpark figure casual readers interested in exploring EVs' possibilities might want. Mike Tribby --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Seth Leitman, (Briarcliff Manor, NY) is currently President and Managing Member of the ETS Energy Store, LCC, which provides energy efficiency, electric transportation and organic, natural, and sustainable products for business and home use (from energ-efficient bulbs to electric vehicle conversion referrals). Previously, he worked for the New York State Power Authority and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, where he helped develop, market, and manage electric and hybrid vehicle programs serving New York State and the New York metropolitan area. Seth is the consulting editor for a series of upcoming titles called the “Green Guru Guides,” which focus on implementing environmentally friendly technologies and making them work for you.
Bob Brant was the forward-thinking author of the now classic first edition of Build Your Own Electric Vehicle
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Top Customer Reviews
excellent source of information, even if one is just
interested in learning more about the subject of electric
vehicles. Mr Brant's credentials include a degree in
engineering, and having worked on the Lunar Rover.
He begins his book by exploring the appropriateness of the
electric vehicle from an environmental standpoint. He
then quickly reviews the history of the EV, from the
mid 1800's to the present. He does a good job of surveying
the current (as of late 1993) crop of electic vehicle
producers, as well as the plans of the major auto makers
Brant devots a chapter to the options available to the
person who wants to own an electric vehicle today: Buy
a ready to run car from a manufacturer or converter, have
one built or converted for you, or do the conversion
yourself. One option that he seems to largely discount is
the option of buying a used EV. Although such vehicles
can be somewhat hard to find, especially away from large
cities on the coasts, they can put a person into an EV
for much less money and work than any other alternative.
As you might expect from the book's title Brant favors
the self-conversion option. He compares the various types
of motor vehicles as conversion options; passenger cars,
vans, and small pickup trucks. His conclusion, that a
small pickup truck might be the easiest to convert, while
giving the best range, seems a valid one, as long as a
small pickup meets your needs, and suits your style.
Chapter 5 is an excellent reference listing suppliers,
EV clubs, and various converters and manufacturers.
With Chapter 6 Brant begins the real meat of the book.
He presents formulae and charts that allow you predict
the performance of the vehicle you choose for conversion,
and pick the size of motor and batteries that you will
The next chapters are devoted to each of the unique
systems of an EV in some detail: Electric motors,
controllers, batteries, and chargers. To this reviewer,
these chapters are the most valuable, and make this book
useful to anyone with an interest in Electric Vehicles.
The current state of the art is reviewed for each of these
systems in some detail and with an eye toward practical
maintanence and selection, and upcoming technology is also
Surprisingly, only one chapter of the book covers
the actual conversion process. Although there is probably
enough detail here for the experienced home mechanic or
mechanically inclined individual, someone who has never
pulled an engine out of a car, or done other major repairs
on his own, will probably need more help; especially if
his conversion is not of a small pickup truck.
All-in-all there is a lot of good information in this
book, and it is a vital addition to the library of any
would-be electric vehicle converter, owner or pipe
Lots of "shade tree" mechanics ( like me ) will have to look further for more practical information.Such as - a 10 HP motor in a Geo Metro will be fine for trips to the grocery store but no good for highway use. Also errors have crept in, and the schematic diagrams are incomplete and puzzling. Of course, the book was published nine years ago, and technology has advanced in the EV industry, as in everything else
This is focussed on someone who wants to convert an internal combustion car to an electric vehicle, but if you are interested in understanding EV's in general it is a good resource, though it is pretty detailed and technical.
If you are not technically inclined you shouldn't despair, though it is clear that if you are not handy, EV conversion might be VERY difficult. This book will allow you to at least begin to understand the tradeoffs and how to create a conversion system.
All around great reference.