Sunday, November 29, 2009

Mer-Chevy engine and tranny take-apart

I got some more work done on the Mer-Chevy Project this weekend.

Last weekend, we ran out of daylight before we could get the transmission off the S10 gasoline engine.

So, yesterday, I did the work of removing the tranny from the engine.

The transmission had some long bars that bolt the transmission to the engine.
After getting the two apart, I also removed the pressure plate, clutch plate, and flywheel from the gas engine.

The Mercedes diesel engine has lots of things still connected to it.
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The goofy round thing on the left/upper left is the air conditioning compressor. It also has a big metal bracket that wraps around the engine to hold it. I removed both the compressor and that bracket. The bracket bolts also held the water pump in. That started dripping coolant out on me when it loosened. I will have to get some shorter bolts to re-install the water pump.

The pulley in the lower right is the power steering pump. I removed that as well and both the belts still on the engine.

On the other side, I started working to remove the flywheel.

The flywheel is held on by a dozen 8mm hex socket bolts. I had to go out to the parts store to buy a male hex socket to fit those bolts.
I slid a long bolt through a whole in the flywheel, and through the starter motor hole to hold the flywheel in place while I turned out the bolts.

9 of the bolts came out fine (but boy were they torqued!) while three of them just stripped out. No way were those coming out now. I called Rich and asked for any advice on getting the bolts out. He suggested using a chisel and hammer to bite into the bolt heads and whack them counterclockwise.

I dug around and found a pointy chisel. I was amazed that the chisel really would bite into the metal of the bolt head. After some careful whacks, I actually was able to unscrew them!

With all the bolts out, I pulled the flywheel off.

Behind the flywheel, I was able to take out 4 bolts holding on the "transmission adapter ring" and smack it off with a rubber mallet.

Here's the drive end of the engine with the flywheel and tranny ring removed.
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Here is the ring that was removed.

It's all cast aluminum and fits directly to the engine block. I should be able to use this as a template to create a custom adapter plate between the Mercedes diesel and the Chevy manual transmission.

Here's a photo of the Chevy Tranny with the Mercedes adapter ring in front of it and the 2.2L gas engine in the background.
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I should be able to start work soon on designing the custom adapter plate between the diesel and the manual transmission.

Also, I need to figure out if I can find a flywheel off a Mercedes with a manual transmission, or if it is possible to modify the flywheel from the S10 to fit the diesel. I think that might be the tough part.

Does anyone know of a good forum for Mercedes diesels to ask questions and buy/sell/trade parts?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

EV1 in a movie.

Tonight, I watched the film SCORCHED, a 2003 bank-heist comedy.

One of the lead characters was played by Woody Harrelson. The character is a nature-loving-crackpot who lives in a dome with power from solar panels, with his room-mate, a duck.

What car does he drive? A beat up EV1!
In the movie the car is dusty and missing the rear wheel covers.

I looked up some info on the movie (thanks!) and found that it finished filming just before August 2001.

The court ruling against CARB was in June 2001, and the statement by GM about taking the cars off the road was in February 2002.

That means the car could have been a regular, official leased vehicle at the time.

I know that Woody Harrelson was a supporter of the car, I don't know if he EVer leased one or not. (I don't remember seeing him in WHO KILLED THE ELECTRIC CAR.)

The other weird part is that a motorcycle is featured in the film - the exact same make/model/and color that I converted to electric!

What are the odds of an electric car and my EV Motorcycle in the same movie?

Throw in a black Geo Metro, and I would be freakin' out!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving, You Turkeys!

While driving to a job the other day, I went through a neighborhood that had about 20 turkeys just wandering through the yards, and across the roads.
Fortunately, I had a camera handy.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Project: Mer-Chevy - Engine Pull Day

Yesterday was a big day on continuing my "No More Gas" project.
I have had both a Chevy S-10 and an old Mercedes 240D sitting in my driveway all summer.

I finally had a free Sunday when my buddies could come over to help pull both engines from the vehicles.

The 240D's diesel engine will go in the pickup. I am shooting for 40 mpg, while running on bio-fuel.

The next big trick will be figuring out how to mate the diesel engine to the truck's manual transmission.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Project Mer-Chevy back on track!

Today was a big day on the Diesel S10 project!

I FINALLY had a Sunday to myself! (Way too busy at work lately, and other projects..)

So, last night I called up my buddy Rich, and e-mailed a few other folks to see if anyone else could come out for the engine pull.

This morning Rich, and Tim (who you may remember welded the Electro-Metro from INSIDE the engine compartment..) came over so we could pull the 4-cylinder diesel engine from the Mercedes 240D.

These guys are animals of car destruction. The showed up at 9am and we had the engine out before noon. I had done hardly any prep work on the car before they got there!

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Rich brought his fine selection of tools, including the engine hoist and car ramps.

Here, Tim stands next to the freshly pulled 2.4L diesel engine (with attached automatic transmission)
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Since we made quick work of the first engine, we then took a lunch break. Tim let me drive his Prius to drive into town for lunch. It was a little weird. It's a nice car, but I typically don't have an engine, just an electric motor, when I make that trip! (Please see the Electro-Metro build thread...)

Back from lunch, we went to work on removing the 2.2L 4-cylinder gas engine from the S10. It was a little more work in that we couldn't just cut cables at random, and I wanted to keep useful things like steering, coolant and washer resevoirs, etc.

We ended up having to remove the driveshaft, pull the engine part way out, remove the engine mounts, then pull the engine the rest of the way out.

We did remove the transmission from the diesel engine, but it was getting dark by the time the gas engine was out, so that one still has the tranny on it.

One good thing I did find out about the diesel transmission is that it already has an "adapter plate" of sorts between the engine and transmission. Apparently, this is something they did to make their various engines and transmissions a little more interchangable. For me, it means I have a head-start on a way to connect the Mercedes diesel engine with the Chevy manual transmission.

What's next?
It's time to remove the manual tranny from the S10 gas engine, and then start figuring out and adapter plate design.

After pulling both engines, the diesel DOES look pretty monsterous compared to the gas engine. I measured, and it should fit fine, but it will be a bit of work making everything line up!

Also, the diesel has a really low oil pan on the far FRONT of the engine, and the steering went BEHIND that. On the truck, the oil pan is in the BACK of the engine and the steering goes in FRONT of it. Figuring how all that is going to work will be fun!

Again, the goal of this project is to have a utility vehicle capable of going long distances with one or two people, getting very good fuel economy, while sometimes carrying a heavy/bulky load or towing, and be able to run on biofuels.

A small-engine bio-diesel pickup truck meets that bill nicely!

This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 1024x576.

(Chevy 2.2L gasoline engine, with Tim for scale.)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Dodge Neon Update Nov. 15, 2009

More on Tom's Car!
He has been able to get about 50 miles on a charge.
Also, the bugs have been worked out for shifting. Overall, the project is quite a success. It only needs a few small things still worked out.

Watch the video for the details straight from Tom!


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Eco-Challenge!! Plastic Mirrors

What's the best use for over 50 pieces of 2'x2' plastic mirror?
I am collecting suggestions through YouTube and various blogs. The best suggestion will be what I actually do with the mirrors for some sort of Eco-Project.

Extra points for: creativity, eco-friendliness, DIY, and cheap!

Leave your comments and suggestions below!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Electric car ride

Just a little video of rolling shots of the Electro-Metro with the ELECTRIC CAR song by THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS.

Monday, November 2, 2009

EV Controller now communicating

Yesterday, I installed a serial port on my homebuilt controller.

Not only is it much more affordable than a commercial controller, but it has some great features when hooked up to a computer for data logging. I'm just really excited to go for a ride with a laptop hooked up!