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Unread 01-26-2019, 04:35 PM   #11
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

This will likely be my next winter's project. A couple of questions...How does a 7 pack of batteries reach 48 volts? These Leaf Batteries all appear to be a little over 4V. Would I expect about 20 miles on a 7 pack? How many years are these batteries expected to last? Thanks for your time.
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Unread 01-27-2019, 09:22 AM   #12
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

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Originally Posted by yensidcamper View Post
This will likely be my next winter's project. A couple of questions...How does a 7 pack of batteries reach 48 volts? These Leaf Batteries all appear to be a little over 4V. Would I expect about 20 miles on a 7 pack? How many years are these batteries expected to last? Thanks for your time.
The link below is a great source of information for anyone considering a build with Nissan Leaf modules. It has pretty much everything you could need to know about these modules. Check it out.

https://evbatterycenter.com/HAC4/ind...=63&Itemid=196

"When a battery pack for a custom project is being calculated, every module should be considered as two batteries 3.8V / 60Ah each, already connected in series. As a result each module is 7.6V average, max 8.4V. For instance, to make 45V battery - 6 modules can be used." In our case we are adding a 7th module to bring it 53.2v nominal or 58.4v max. By paralleling the second 7 modules and not putting them in series you double the capacity but keep the voltage the same.

Prepare yourself for some seriously SWAG math here...

"Charging/Discharging cycles
The battery is rated for 1200 cycles at 0-100% charge until it*reaches*the 80% of the capacity or 5000 cycles when used 0-80% charge." Compared this to 400-500 charge cycles for lead acid batteries. I am configuring my systems to charge to max 80% capacity and I will seldom run it below 20% from empty. So I should reasonably expect something on the 5000 charge cycles end of the scale. I am still on my first charge, at 52% remaining with just over (aggressively driven) 20 miles traveled.

Also consider that because of my capacity I will typically only charge once or twice a week... So after 3,000-4,000 weeks my battery pack in theory will still have 80% of the original capacity or 32 mile range...

Keep in mind that tire size, terrain, gearing and driving style all have a direct impact on range.

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Unread 01-27-2019, 09:48 AM   #13
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

Thanks for that link. I am confident in my mechanical abilities but my electrical knowledge is just enough to be dangerous or more likely expensive. The more I can read the better. Fortunately I have a relative with strong electrical knowledge to lean on, in addition to this forum.

We would likely only be using our golf cart for a max of 45-60 days per year, age may kill them before use.
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Unread 01-27-2019, 12:37 PM   #14
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

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Originally Posted by yensidcamper View Post
Thanks for that link. I am confident in my mechanical abilities but my electrical knowledge is just enough to be dangerous or more likely expensive. The more I can read the better. Fortunately I have a relative with strong electrical knowledge to lean on, in addition to this forum.

We would likely only be using our golf cart for a max of 45-60 days per year, age may kill them before use.
Age is not an issue for lithium the way it is for lead acid, neither is top off charging and there really isn't any routine maintenance once they are set up and running. The biggest problem people have is if they get the cell voltage to low or to high it can destroy the cell or if you get them to hot. But using a quality BMS and a disconnect relay will provide protection against a Over/Under voltage and even heat.

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Unread 01-27-2019, 06:41 PM   #15
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

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Originally Posted by MCJEFE View Post
Age is not an issue for lithium the way it is for lead acid, neither is top off charging and there really isn't any routine maintenance once they are set up and running. The biggest problem people have is if they get the cell voltage to low or to high it can destroy the cell or if you get them to hot. But using a quality BMS and a disconnect relay will provide protection against a Over/Under voltage and even heat.

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Once my current batteries bite the dust, seems like a "no brainer" to make the switch.
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Unread 01-28-2019, 10:33 AM   #16
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

The terminal covers from EV Battery center seem to be problematic for many people, me included. Last pack I started off ok and before I was done I was trimming off pieces to get the covers to fit. I took a more organized approach this time after being assured that they do actually fit. There are 4 different types of bottoms and two different types of tops. If you look closely at the pictures you can see how they lay out. I kept the tops connected until they went onto the module the kept them in order until I labeled them. This little extra time paid off,just don't get them mixed up or you'll be trimming plastic corners off to make them work.

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Unread 01-28-2019, 10:42 AM   #17
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

Next the bus bars are installed. I don't tighten the bolts and screws until all of the tap wires are in place and the covers are ready to go on.

I also mark the terminals where the tap wires go with numbered tape. As I install each tap wire I put the label on the end of the wire which makes wiring to the a snap and keeps the wires from shorting.

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Unread 01-28-2019, 10:58 AM   #18
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

So for the tap wires you can use crimp ring terminals and it will probably be fine but I prefer a solid solder connection that I know is good and it only takes a few more minutes.

The screws are M6 and the bolts are M8.

As I said earlier request the old tap connectors if your getting your modules from EV Battery Center. You can see in the picture how to trim off the old wire and tabs. Then simply tin the wire and terminal connector, solder them together and a small piece of heat shrink then you have a tap connector!

Start installing from the end of the pack farthest from the BMS makes running the wires easier.

It was an opportune time to solder leads to the temp sensor. Ian at Zeva recommends sandwiching the temp sensor between two modules, which is not specific to the Leaf modules. The problem I have with method is that you are pinching electrical wires between two metal surfaces, granted they are 22 ga. but this is not something that I like to do. Nick from the EV Battery Center before he passed away told Pingeye3 that the best way is to insert the sensor into the tiny hole in the end of the module near the terminals. You can gently push it in 2-4" and then a small piece of tape will keep it in place. Works great!


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Unread 01-28-2019, 11:16 AM   #19
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

Next came the mount for the BMS and the pack top. I have s relay that needs to be replaced in my BMS that Ian at Zeva is taking care of so I already know that it will be replaced thus the reason for the BMS mounting plate.

Being methodical paid off when i installed the terminal covers... lesson learned.



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Unread 01-28-2019, 11:31 AM   #20
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Default Re: DIY 101 - 14 cell Nissan Leaf lithium pack

Awesome job so far. Thanks for all the info.
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