Under Ye Olde HoodMotor MountedCharger plugRear BatteriesNew Forklift Motor compare to burnt-out The "new" forklift motor mounted and rMe and my beautiful assistant
OwnerAlex Chamberlain
LocationHurricane, Utah United States map
Email email image
Vehicle1995 Geo Tracker
"BEV" is my personal project of about 2
months. This is my first conversion,
and it works beautifully.
MotorClark 1774059 Series Wound DC
Oct. 2008 - Old ES-15A Motor just
burned up. Despite what the company selling it told me, it was way too small for the Tracker.

Dec. 2008 - I have purchased an old
Clark Electric Forklift and I am in the
process of having a coupler machined
for the 12" drive motor to couple with
my transmission. . . we're getting

Jan. 2008.
After basically rebuilding everything
from the ground up, this is once again
a working electric vehicle. I advanced
the brushes on my forklift motor 10
degrees so that I can eventually
upgrade to a higher voltage (144 volts), but for now it's slogging around at 72 volts once again. The lift motor is a bit slower than the old ES-15A, but it has much more torque, so the performance is very similar. I have a bit more power into the higher gears than I had before.
DrivetrainOriginal 5-speed manual transmission
coupled to motor with clutch removed
(simply let off gas pedal to shift -
works great).
ControllerAlltrax AXE 7245
72 volt, 450A Max (2 minute rating),
300A 5 minute rating, 200A 60 minute
rating. Computer programmable for
acceleration, etc.
Batteries12, 6.00 Volt, Lead-Acid, Flooded
These are made by Johnson Controls and
purchased at Costco. I have them
connected in series by lengths of
copper plumbing pipe with the ends
smashed and drilled-through.
System Voltage72 Volts
ChargerSchumacher SE-1072
Simple charger capable of charging 6
12v or 12 6v in series.
HeaterNone. I live in Southern Utah, so I
should be okay.
DC/DC Converter Everstart Deep Cycle Marine Battery
8-year-old 12v from Walmart that I originally bought to power a little robot that I'd made.
Top Speed45 MPH (72 KPH)
Tested. Loses a fair bit of power on the high end of its RPM range, which should improve somewhat when I move to a higher voltage someday.
AccelerationFast starts, slow to get up to speed. With the old motor, I left it in 2nd gear for around-town driving. Now, with the forklift motor, I leave it in 3rd and pop it into 5th if I need to go fast.
Range35 Miles (56 Kilometers)
I actually haven't tested this. I've
gone about 16 miles without charging
and it didn't seem "tired" at all. But
as of yet, I haven't had any need to go
any farther. I believe my batteries are about 225 Ah each, which, if I can use 60% of that after Peukert's Curve has its way, should allow me to drive at 100 amps for about 80 minutes. On a flat grade in 3rd gear, it pulls about 100 amps at 30mph, so that should equate to about 40 miles of range.
EV Miles
Start:139,542 Miles (224,523 Kilometers)
Current:141,075 Miles (226,989 Kilometers)
Total:1,533 Miles (2,466 Kilometers)
    As of 10/22/2009
Seating Capacity4 adults
Curb Weight3,000 Pounds (1,363 Kilograms)
This weight is according to a paid-scale. My battery pack
should weigh about 756 lbs, my motor is probably in the 200 lb range. Beyond that, there are probably 50-100 lbs of extras.
Conversion Time2 months
Conversion Cost$4,200.00 + $600 for engine-less
+$350.00 for an old Forklift.
+about $200-ish for various machine-
shop fees, tools, etc. to get the
forklift motor working.
Additional FeaturesBrake pump from a Volkswagon. Front Coil Springs from a Suzuki Grand Vitara (the stock springs weren't doing such a great job negotiating the weight of a fork lift motor and 7 golf cart batteries under the hood).
As mentioned above, the ES-15A Motor died after only
a little over 300 miles. I've put a 12" Motor from an
old Clark Forklift in. I'd like to give it a paint job
someday too. Like everyone else, I'm waiting for Lithium
Iron Phosphate to become a lot cheaper. My wife deserves a special thanks for her patience while I work on this, and my good friend Andy Wright, among others have been indispensable with their advice, assistance, etc.

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