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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This week I bought my very first 2001 Insight! I have been wanting this car for many years, due to it being well engineered and a stick shift hybrid... (Automatic/CVT is no fun and too damn expensive when it fails)

It has 65,000 miles on it and the Ni-Mh battery pack seems to still be in good working order. I have been spending the last few days brainstorming how I might want to hack/mod this car.

Some of the important (to me) mods I want to do are:
MIMA
Grid-tie charging
Supplemental HV pack

I just so happen to do very part time work at an e-waste warehouse and have free/scrap cost access to used laptop batteries, usually these batteries just have one bad 18650 cell in them, and the rest are good, so this would make an excellent source for used cells to fill up the secret compartment (with about 400+ cells).

The problem is I have no idea how to series-charge the 40 in-series cell-groups needed to get near 144v... Does there exist economical balance chargers with that many channels? Or are there cheap battery management systems out there I could get? Or a (simple) circuit design out there a super-amateur electronics dummy like me could build?

One crazy idea is to just put all cells in parallel and convert the voltage using switched capacitor (inductorless) voltage boosters (I also usually have cheap/free access to huge capacitors), but I'd rather not deal with the inefficiency of voltage conversion or power buses carrying 1000+ amps if I can.

I do not need regen-charging the supplemental battery pack unless the effort required to do so is trivial, since this project would be for daily commuting purposes with nightly grid-charging.

Thanks for reading :)
 

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Welcome aboard. :) Where on earth are you located? We need directions to your job. :D

You can buy bms boards on ebay or build your own. Some use hobby chargers for lifepo4 cells. You can also build your own charger with mean well power supplies by stacking them.

The main issue is the demand and charge the IMA system uses, its usually too much for most cells to handle and assuming these are 2 amps, they are less than the 6.5 amps of the existing cells and lifepo4 has a different charge rythm.

Your better bet i to use it as a regulated buddy pack to the IMA system.
 

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Hi ktx,
I have an honda civid and was also thinking of doing some 18650 hack...
How did your project go?
Do you know a way to give the IMA motor more power? :)

Cheers.
BR,
Pedro Santos
 
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