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Old 09-27-2020, 04:32 PM   #1
pboehm21
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Default Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Curious to hear what everyone's total bills have come in for a lithium swap? I have a 2016 RXV that appears to be completely stock with the original Trojan batteries. They appear to be giving out so I'm contemplating doing the leaf or some other swap to lithium over the winter. The cart is primarily used driving around my neighborhood under 5 miles per day. I've priced batteries locally and prices seem to range from $720 to about $840 for 4-12v's. If I can go the lithium route for under $1000 I may do it. Will I be happy I did, given my scenario?
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Old 09-28-2020, 08:29 AM   #2
Volt_Ampere
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

I would plan at least 1800 to 2K for a Lithium swap.
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Old 09-28-2020, 09:24 PM   #3
pboehm21
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Thought that might be the case. Looks like some new trojans might be in my future. Any other brands worth looking at?
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:50 AM   #4
ejcox811
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

I've got a 2017 RXV that has been sped up by Bob. It had original 4x12 Trojans with pretty weak range, so I was planning out a lithium swap. Just before my cells arrived, one of the Trojans bit the dust (sag to <10v under load, basically no range at all).

I did the conversion as cheap as possible now with thoughts of upgrading in the future. I bought the 7 pack G1 cells from TechDirectClub with BMS. I also bought 2 sets of bus bars and installed them under the PCB. I'm charging through the BMS but discharging straight from the pack. The BMS offers HV protection while charging but I currently don't have HV or LV protection while running with the exception of an audible buzzer integrated into the BMS that sounds on LV (maybe HV also, I'm not sure). I'm giving myself some room with charging to avoid HV on regen - only charging to 57ish volts instead of 58.6 max. Also checking pack voltage religiously. Occasionally checking individual cell voltage, but the BMS does a good job of balancing them on charge.

I've got a JLD404 w/ 75mV shunt that I'm installing to monitor pack voltage and track amps and AH while running. It also has configurable relays that you could use to disconnect pack on HV/LV (with relay/contactor), open throttle switch connection, or sound buzzer/warning lights. I'm going to use it to sound a buzzer and warning light on pack HV or LV conditions.

Also, I have the cheap Chinese BT BMS on order from AliExpress so I can watch live cell voltages and maybe set up the Sergio style relay protection (still undecided how I actually want to implement).

Anyway, I've been running the cart around the neighborhood for a couple weeks now. I think the lowest I've run the voltage between charges is 53.5v. The 15a charger charges it lightning fast also. Performance is incredible. No sag under acceleration, just power. Cart is MUCH lighter. Range is at least triple what I was getting with the tired old FLAs. Once I get the JLD404 hooked up I'll do some benchmark tests.

But back to the original question- cost:
Pack+BMS+hardware = $400
2 sets of bus bars = $20
Charger = $120
JLD404 = $62
Fuse, Terminal blocks, other misc. = $75

Total Cost = $677

Once I get the Chinese BMS and do some other upgrades and clean up it'll probably add another $100 or so. I just picked up an old truck bed toolbox for $35 to use the diamond plate aluminum to put a floor in the battery tray, now to just find the time...

https://www.techdirectclub.com/48-vo...-bms-lot-of-7/

https://www.techdirectclub.com/for-n...-and-5-busbar/

Last edited by ejcox811; 09-29-2020 at 11:26 AM.. Reason: typos
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Old 09-29-2020, 08:53 AM   #5
PingEye3
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Ejcox811 - When you get around to chopping up the toolbox, attached is a drawing to work from. The bottom plate is easier when made out of a single piece. Sq tube spacer not needed if one piece bottom is made. There is the piece across the back and a small top for it. This helps to close off the rear from excessive water splashing. The other small pieces I make as needed when I do a Lithium upgrade. A couple of pictures for you.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_20191225_173321057.jpg (271.1 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_20191225_173336602.jpg (245.3 KB, 0 views)
File Type: jpg Kenwood Pack Install.jpg (316.7 KB, 0 views)
Attached Files
File Type: pdf RXV - Lithium Pack Brackets.pdf (100.4 KB, 0 views)
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Old 09-29-2020, 09:27 AM   #6
ejcox811
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Quote:
Originally Posted by PingEye3 View Post
Ejcox811 - When you get around to chopping up the toolbox, attached is a drawing to work from. The bottom plate is easier when made out of a single piece. Sq tube spacer not needed if one piece bottom is made. There is the piece across the back and a small top for it. This helps to close off the rear from excessive water splashing. The other small pieces I make as needed when I do a Lithium upgrade. A couple of pictures for you.
This is incredibly helpful. Thank you! That's a very clean install.

Did you secure the aluminum to the plastic tray underneath? Also, what did you use to cut the aluminum? I'll have to make a 2-piece bottom as well since the width and height of the box are both less than 20.25". I just hope that my hack job looks half as clean as your setup!
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Old 09-29-2020, 10:18 AM   #7
PingEye3
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Quote:
Originally Posted by ejcox811 View Post
This is incredibly helpful. Thank you! That's a very clean install.

Did you secure the aluminum to the plastic tray underneath? Yes I did and those hole layouts shown are for that. I counter sink a 1/4-20 and drill through and locknut the bottom. Also, what did you use to cut the aluminum? I'll have to make a 2-piece bottom as well since the width and height of the box are both less than 20.25". I just hope that my hack job looks half as clean as your setup!
I am retired but have access to a programmable 10' shear and break and all the aluminum drops I can use. And a vertical bandsaw with 3' diameter, 1000# guide wheels. And powerful deburring wheels.

That being said, aluminum is easy to cut in long straight lines with a circular saw and rip blade. Cuts like butter but lots of noise and chips flying. Jig saw for small intricate cuts. When making it in two pieces, follow dimensions. It really takes about 1.25" instead of 1" tubing for spacer brace when using two pieces, but I just add a couple of flat washers to make it level out. No spacer needed if one piece bottom.
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Old 09-29-2020, 11:05 PM   #8
pboehm21
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Quote:
Originally Posted by ejcox811 View Post
I've got a 2017 RXV that has been sped up by Bob. It had original 4x12 Trojans with pretty weak range, so I was planning out a lithium swap. Just before my cells arrived, one of the Trojans bit the dust (sag to <10v under load, basically no range at all).

I did the conversion as cheap as possible now with thoughts of upgrading in the future. I bought the 7 pack G1 cells from TechDirectClub with BMS. I also bought 2 sets of bus bars and installed them under the PCB. I'm charging through the BMS but discharging straight from the pack. The BMS offers HV protection while charging but I currently don't have HV or LV protection while running with the exception of an audible buzzer integrated into the BMS that sounds on LV (maybe HV also, I'm not sure). I'm giving myself some room with charging to avoid HV on regen - only charging to 57ish volts instead of 58.6 max. Also checking pack voltage religiously. Occasionally checking individual cell voltage, but the BMS does a good job of balancing them on charge.

I've got a JLD404 w/ 75mV shunt that I'm installing to monitor pack voltage and track amps and AH while running. It also has configurable relays that you could use to disconnect pack on HV/LV (with relay/contactor), open throttle switch connection, or sound buzzer/warning lights. I'm going to use it to sound a buzzer and warning light on pack HV or LV conditions.

Also, I have the cheap Chinese BT BMS on order from AliExpress so I can watch live cell voltages and maybe set up the Sergio style relay protection (still undecided how I actually want to implement).

Anyway, I've been running the cart around the neighborhood for a couple weeks now. I think the lowest I've run the voltage between charges is 53.5v. The 15a charger charges it lightning fast also. Performance is incredible. No sag under acceleration, just power. Cart is MUCH lighter. Range is at least triple what I was getting with the tired old FLAs. Once I get the JLD404 hooked up I'll do some benchmark tests.

But back to the original question- cost:
Pack+BMS+hardware = $400
2 sets of bus bars = $20
Charger = $120
JLD404 = $62
Fuse, Terminal blocks, other misc. = $75

Total Cost = $677

Once I get the Chinese BMS and do some other upgrades and clean up it'll probably add another $100 or so. I just picked up an old truck bed toolbox for $35 to use the diamond plate aluminum to put a floor in the battery tray, now to just find the time...

https://www.techdirectclub.com/48-vo...-bms-lot-of-7/

https://www.techdirectclub.com/for-n...-and-5-busbar/
That is an awesome write up... Thank you. Thats about what the numbers in my head were telling me but I wanted to make sure. How many hours do you think you have in the install?
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Old 09-29-2020, 11:08 PM   #9
pboehm21
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Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Quote:
Originally Posted by PingEye3 View Post
Ejcox811 - When you get around to chopping up the toolbox, attached is a drawing to work from. The bottom plate is easier when made out of a single piece. Sq tube spacer not needed if one piece bottom is made. There is the piece across the back and a small top for it. This helps to close off the rear from excessive water splashing. The other small pieces I make as needed when I do a Lithium upgrade. A couple of pictures for you.
That diagram is excellent! Thanks for sharing. If and when I go at this I hope mine turns out half as clean as yours.
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Old 09-30-2020, 08:22 AM   #10
ejcox811
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Location: Mobile, AL
Posts: 12
Default Re: Total Cost Leaf RXV Lithium Swap

Quote:
Originally Posted by PingEye3 View Post
I am retired but have access to a programmable 10' shear and break and all the aluminum drops I can use. And a vertical bandsaw with 3' diameter, 1000# guide wheels. And powerful deburring wheels.

That being said, aluminum is easy to cut in long straight lines with a circular saw and rip blade. Cuts like butter but lots of noise and chips flying. Jig saw for small intricate cuts. When making it in two pieces, follow dimensions. It really takes about 1.25" instead of 1" tubing for spacer brace when using two pieces, but I just add a couple of flat washers to make it level out. No spacer needed if one piece bottom.
The countersunk machine screws looks great. I don't think I have the thickness necessary to countersink, but I was planning to through bolt and locknut.

It would be cool to have those tools available and the knowledge to use them. My plan is to use a jigsaw with a fine-tooth metal cutting blade and straight edge. We'll see how that goes. Fortunately I have enough metal to make a few mistakes.
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