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Discussion Starter #1
This is a completely off the wall idea and possibly impossible but I had to ask anyway. The Civic comes with a bigger electric engine than the one in the insight if I recall right. Has anybody considered trying to "upgrade" the electric engine in the insight to a bigger model, if not from the civic maybe some other model engine that fits in the same space?
:?:
The car is probably to new for such a heavy modification, but it was an idea. I mean, 5hp is ok but it'd be nice to get a 7-10 hp electric motor instead. I figured the one from the civic has to have similar power requirements and connections since they're both Honda.

If this engine could be upgraded, you'd increase your 0-60 (low end torque I think?) and it wouldn't hurt your gas mileage at all, it may drain the batteries a little faster but that shouldn't be a problem, my charge is always hanging in the upper 95% now.
 

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this is just part one of my goals life.

i want a small rotary engine to power my rear left tire, and a small diesel/AC electric hybrid to power my rear right. then i would be a quad-brid! MWUAHAHHA!!!

more seriously though, i think one of the obstacles to just swapping out the motors is the power compatibility. i'm not an electrical engineer, but if you did tweak the volts and amps to work with your new motor, it would still take a toll on the batteries. i think it has to do with how much power the motor draws in a period of time. the more power you drain from it, the worse for the batteries it gets.
but don't quote me on that

i've been looking for electric motors for a while, and if you don't want to shell out LOTS of money for a new one, you could get an older one (like on ebay) but it's hard to find one that is some-what efficient and still powerful.

i think our best bet is a wrecked insight/prius/civic that you could just yank out. i say the prius because it's motor is capable of some 240 ft. lbs. of torque :shock:

or, even an EV-1 (haven't researched that one though)

is it possible? most likely.
will it be difficult? even more likely.
will it cost much if you don't do it yourself? YES :)
 

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I believe the electric motor on both the Insight and HCH are both rated at 10kW. The main difference is that the HCH has a 4cyl engine while the Insight only a 3cyl.
 

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If you upgrade the motor (which would be a major challenge in itself since the IMA unit is completely custom to Honda) you will also need to upgrade the controller and battery pack. Doing so would probably result in the ECM/ECU needing to be reprogrammed, which I doubt is possible (might be...I have not attempted to hack mine yet). You'd be looking at some serious expense.

What might be a better alternative would be to add a second motor to the rear. This would require building a rear axel, but could be done. Of course, the pack would have to be upgraded, and a 2nd controller added...But it would not be too hard to piggy-back that 2nd motor controller on the first...Still, you would be looking at probably a $30,000 project, and your range/MPG would probably suffer quite a lot.
 

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now if only we could adjust how much Assist gets used when the electric motor kicks in...

especially since the CVT's charge stays so high anyway :D
 

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Discussion Starter #7
More thoughts

Why would you need to redo the batteries and computer? If you used the Honda motor from the Civic I believe it would work. It's also Honda and I believe, from what I gathered on a real low level basis, it uses the same voltage. If the bigger electric motor is from Honda, lets say it also had similar mounts and used the same power requirements, wouldn't the new motor just work like the old one, turning on when the computer tells it to and such. The computer wouldn't be the wiser that the assistance the electrical motor is providing is just stronger. The only thing that it may realize is the new electric engine is pulling more power than the old one, not more voltage but it's power requirements are higher. My CVT came with half a charge and as I drove it, within 3-4 days it went up to full charge and it's been 3-4 days and it hasn't shown any signs of dropping from full charge, even with accelerating a lot and such. It seems CVT keeps the charge up pretty good, so it should easily be able to handle powering a stronger electric motor, who knows maybe it'll dip to 75% once in a while now.

I just figured the electric engine increases the low end torque and helps you accelerate and climb big hills and such. So upgrading it would increase your 0-60 and help you get up steeper hills. When using the CVT anything that helps in the 0-60 can't be bad. Maybe we can get up there in the 10 second range like the 5-speed owners have.
 

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The larger motor would require a higher peak current. I can assume the Civic does not use the same pack as the Insight. Constantly putting a high draw on the pack and deep cycling it will kill it very quickly.
 

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it would probably be easier to get an electric motor (any kind) and have it power the rear wheel(s) with it's own battery pack. then maybe a rheostat on the steering wheel so you decide when to use it. but it would be completely seperate from the rest of the car's function and could charge it with a 110v outlet at home
 

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I think adding rear motors are the way to go, as an Ex -SI driver any more HP in the front and there will be traction issues, especially in the wet. Do you think a second battery pack could fit in the trunk compartment?
 

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A second battery pack would easily fit, but it would be best to build a large pack and replace the stock one. Saves weight and space.

As for traction, I have problems as it is now. ANY front wheel drive will have horrible traction at high throttle levels.
 

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I know that the Civic and Insight electric motors are not at all compatible. The Civic motor is more than twice as thick. The Insight one was designed to replace the rearmost cylinder of a 4 cylinder engine (now with 3 cylinders), so the electric motor is not just mounted somewhere. It is part of the engine.

Someone complained about the automatic transmission not giving enough control over boost on accelleration. According to the 2003 flyer, there's a button marked "S" on the steering wheel that is supposed to be the equivalent to the Galaxy Quest HyperDrive. "Don't hold down the button."

Do older models have this button? I had a 5 speed, so it was a non-issue. Getting more accelleration was simple: Drop two gears and stomp on the accellerator and there's plenty of power if you need to accellerate up hill. Gas mileage sucks for a little while and then you get back to regular driving.

I trust that the Honda engineers worked really hard on striking a balance between weight, storage capacity, torque, horsepower and all that. I doubt that I could add anything that would improve this. Better is just learning how to drive the car better, using the very subtle difference in foot pressure on the accellerator (letting the valves do their special thing), and being willing to vary speed on hills a little (when traffic allows) in order to get better gas mileage.
 
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Will M said:
Someone complained about the automatic transmission not giving enough control over boost on accelleration. According to the 2003 flyer, there's a button marked "S" on the steering wheel that is supposed to be the equivalent to the Galaxy Quest HyperDrive. "Don't hold down the button."
The "S button" does improve the low-end somewhat. I have to go out w/ a stopwatch and estimate exactly how much it does improve over just smashing the pedal in drive. I have a CVT and put it in S and actually pulled away from another guy in a 5-speed Insight. I'm not sure exactly how hard he was trying or if he had a mechanical problem.

Anyway, does anyone know about the compatibility between the new Toyota 70hp electric synergy motor (going into the next gen Prius and Lexus RX330) and our own? I beleive its quite up there in torque too (upwards of 200lb/ft??) I'd love to have that in my Insight. Has there been any experimenting/debates over this yet?
 

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I recall years back that someone built a 200+ HP Civic. They did it by puttting a second Civic motor in the back of the car! Forget about listening to your stereo. The car was only about as fast as a turbo. It turns out that the extra weight of the engine plus the extra mettal to reinforce it for the motor mounts made the car much heavier, somewhat negating the power gain.

Using rim motors of lets say 10 HP each for the back wheels and a small hi tech battery pack to supply them for "occasional use" would not add that much to the weight. you could have a boost button on the steering wheel. properly designed it could also aid regenerative braking.

Hopefully you have access to a machine shop. Otherwise, let me see.......It took 1,000 engineers working for about 5 years to make the "new" Prius as fast as the "old" Insight :shock:
 

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IMA upgrades

One of the big problems is the resistance the batteries have to begin with. None of us are getting the 144 volts claimed. If Honda would rework the controller we might get more power to the road. A change in the battery system to lead acid would deliver more power, but there would be severe temp. problems associated with the colder weather, weight too.
I read somewhere that Honda did convert a few Insights to lead in England some time ago but I never heard anything after that.
Conversions to Li Ion is posible but costly, very experimental and would require mods to the aluminum structure and that could be a bear. See
http://www.acpropulsion.com
for more on this type of thing.
I just wonder what Honda is going to do to combat the new Prius. I drove one, quick but handles like a Buick and sits high.
RT
 

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Increase the efficiency of the IMA experiment.

I am in the process of testing my patented Cryogenic Tempering process on the Insight IMA. In tests on other motors, I have been able to increase the efficiency by as much as 25%. If the Insight IMA responds the same as other motors I had tested, the horsepower and torque should increase while the amp draw stays unchanged. And since the motor is also the generator, I am hoping the generator side responds favorably. I just bought a 2001 Insight with a bad engine, and hope to have my Insight running by the end of December, 2003. Will keep you posted.
 

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Increase the efficiency of the IMA experiment.

I am in the process of testing my patented Cryogenic Tempering process on the Insight IMA. In tests on other motors, I have been able to increase the efficiency by as much as 25%. If the Insight IMA responds the same as other motors I had tested, the horsepower and torque should increase while the amp draw stays unchanged. And since the motor is also the generator, I am hoping the generator side responds favorably. I just bought a 2001 Insight with a bad engine, and hope to have my Insight running by the end of December, 2003. Will keep you posted.
 

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cryogenic heat tempering

Cryo-Power, are you affiliated with Cryo-Pro, in Springfield, MO? I noticed you're located in Springfield. I sent a 5th gear syncronizer sleeve set to Cryo-Pro in September, for cryogenic heat tempering. Afterwards, I sent it out for shot-peening. Would shot-peening also perhaps improve the efficiency of an electric motor even further, I wonder.
 

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Cryo for Motors

Yes, I own Cryopro. I received a patent for Cryo Tempering of electric motors and generators in July of this year. Depending on the efficiency of the motor before my Cryo process will depend on how much the Cryo process will increase the efficiency. Other benefits of the Cryo process are that it will decrease the resistance of carbon by 10%, like used in brush type motors. It will also increase the conductivity of copper wire and stress relieve the copper windings in its wound condition. So the electrons flow more freely and build less heat so resistance is lower because of the lower running temperatures.
As for the synchronizer, the Cryo process will stress relieve the part. You do not have to have it shot-peened after Cryo.
 

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No More Posts for me

I was warned by the administrator that some of you though I was advertising something on this forum. So to make those of you who complained happy, I will NOT post the test results of the Insight's IMA efficiency tests. Are we all happy now?
 
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