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EV Hacker awaiting delivery of my first Model S

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Otmar, Nov 20, 2013.

  1. Otmar

    Otmar EV Modder

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    Corvallis, OR
    Hello community members.
    This forum is wonderful! I've been learning here for a while now. I am very appreciative of all the creative sharing that happens.

    I've driven EV's since 1991. I design and develop power electronics for some of the worlds quickest EV's, so this isn't quite my first EV rodeo. I played a very small bit part on the Roadster dyno when Tesla was young.

    Just like many of you I've watched the development of the Model S, appreciating every well designed aspect. A few months ago I spent some seat time checking one out at the showroom and I knew the time to get one was getting close. It's just so nice! The model S is by far the best EV I've seen and the Supercharger is a game changer. In my case the Supercharger opens up the option of pure electric camping trips, a dream I've had for many years.

    I bought my first Model S yesterday! It's in Long Island and I'm waiting for the auto transport to bring it to Oregon for me. You can see it here:
    I'm living proof the Model S is the safest car ever made!!
    Ok, so maybe I went the lower cost route. But it has a supercharger port that should be repairable. My plan is to graft most of the Model S under my VW Vanagon Westfalia camper. Preliminary measurements on Teslas show it will be challenging but possible. It helps that my camper is 5 feet longer than stock so the battery can fit under it.

    I'll set up and blog and start a thread on the project soon. In the meantime, thanks for all the great information!

    -Otmar
     
  2. palmer_md

    palmer_md Member

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    Nice to see you here Otmar. Welcome to TMC. I look forward to following your build blog.
     
  3. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    Great to have you here Otmar!
     
  4. EdA

    EdA Model S P-2540

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    Good luck with the project!
     
  5. efusco

    efusco Moderator - Model S & X forums

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    That's gonna be a real "Sleeper" in more ways than one! Interesting project, please post your progress.
    RB 1.jpg
     
  6. Otmar

    Otmar EV Modder

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    :biggrin:
    I'll set up a blog soon, here's the target recipient:
    StretchYard2.jpg
     
  7. palmer_md

    palmer_md Member

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    #7 palmer_md, Nov 21, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2013
    I deleted my post because Otmar beat me to it (posting the Zipper Van).
     
  8. FreeOfPge

    FreeOfPge Member

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    Cool, please set up the blog asap. I have thought about doing this exact same thing with a VW bus and may just follow your lead. I attempted to purchase gasdoc's creamed MS with the intent of making some drastic modifications to it. My biggest concern in a modification is the high amperage, if you could include some details on how this is done without frying yourself, that would be SUPER helpful!!!
     
  9. qwk

    qwk Model S P2681

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    This is a very cool project. Welcome to TMC.
     
  10. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

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    Hi again, Otmar. Looking forward to seeing the progress on your latest project. Congrats on the procurement of the Tesla drive-train.
     
  11. Bearman

    Bearman Member

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    Thanks for posting here, this sounds super interesting. Looking forward to reading the blog and good luck on your project :smile:
     
  12. Soflason

    Soflason Member

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    Very cool project, can't wait to see the transformation...
     
  13. Chris TX

    Chris TX Active Member

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    Welcome to the club!
    We have our Model S arriving next week. I'm also modernizing a 1978 VW Westfalia and my wife and I keep imagining what it would be like "Tesla-ized" as well. That simplified drivetrain looks like it would just pop into the back of the bus! The wind resistance would be a huge range limiter since you're going from the CoD of a small fighter jet to a brick wall. ;)
     
  14. elecblue

    elecblue Member

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    Hi Otmar - glad you're with us. If anyone can do a cool project like this it's you! Anyway I ad a Zilla 1k in my last conversion (sold it to raise $ for my Model S) and it worked well. Your products have played a part in the EV transition which I very much appreciate!
     
  15. Otmar

    Otmar EV Modder

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    Thanks everyone for the warm welcome.
    Congrats Chris on the new Model S!
    You are right about the brick as far as air drag goes. I've been running calculations and I expect I'll be doing aero mods before I'm done. The stock Vanagon Westfalia has a terrible Cd of 0.51 and area of 3.17m2. The high top is 0.40 so there is some hope there. http://i40.photobucket.com/albums/e208/schmeldenhoffer/T3Aerodynamics-vi.jpg

    Although the drivetrain looks like it will almost drop right in, a tape measure showed me that the project will not be easy. My Vanagon is larger than your 1978 "loaf" but even on the Vanagon the Tesla is wider, the wheels are much taller and the front struts want to protrude through the VW front seats. Plus the battery pack of the Model S is much longer than the space between the wheels on a stock length VW van. It will certainly be a challenge. :) It would be mechanically much easier if I adapted the old VW suspension, but Tesla brakes and adjustable air suspension are an order of magnitude better and I'm not sure the car would even run without some of those systems connected.
     
  16. Chris TX

    Chris TX Active Member

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    I'm going for a Red9Design front end on my bus, but I don't think they make anything for the Vanagon. You might want to just skip using the MS front end and stick with the Vanagon with uprated brakes and struts. The rear just screams to be put into a Bus/Vanagon, though. Maybe use a different wheel offset for the rear, and maybe use some fender flares?

    Either way, that's going to be an awesome project!
     
  17. RichardL

    RichardL Member

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    Hi Otmar,

    I am waiting on my Model S delivery (on 12/20)

    We met and hung out at various times with your 914 project a few years ago - nice to hear you are still at it!
     
  18. qwk

    qwk Model S P2681

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    Isn't the drivers side part of the suspension damaged? Those are going to be some expensive pieces to replace if you are wanting to stick with using the Air suspension from the model S.
     
  19. JRP3

    JRP3 Hyperactive Member

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    Is this going to be the first DIY conversion using Tesla parts? Should be interesting.
     
  20. Otmar

    Otmar EV Modder

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    Blog is up

    For those of you wanting updates, the blog is live! :)
    http://cafeelectric.com/stretchla/
    I thought I enabled subscribing to it by email, but it doesn't seem to be working yet..
     

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