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How to build a Tesla in your Garage


This guy built an entire electric car in his garage. Let's get started. So in the simplest of terms, how in the world does all of this work?

So in the simplest of terms, we've got a Tesla electric motor run by batteries. Let me show you. So back here we've got the Tesla motor. That's kind of the powertrain of everything. A lot of horsepower. These are the high voltage cables. That's where we get our power...power from the battery packs. Alright, thus we've got a Tesla motor, however square measure we tend to exploitation Tesla battery modules? No. No we are not! -So how does that work? So Tesla just needs kind of around 400 volts of battery power. So I'm actually using LG chem batteries. 12 battery modules. Essentially six in each pack, and I've got two packs. That gives me roughly 400 volts. What did you have to do to make the Tesla motor work? Good question.

So the Tesla motor would need a controller. And so there are only a few companies out there that build a controller for motor the Tesla. This is a controller here, and basically it sends can signals to the motor that kind of tell it how to run. So I've been watching a lot of your article and I think I can point out most of the major components. So should we see how far I get before... Let's do it. Okay. Let's see what's up! So, inside of this car we have the front battery pack here which you said was LG chem batteries, right? And so these batteries...these orange cables are the high voltage lines and they are running back to the rear battery pack which we'll get to in a second.

This here is the front radiator which has liquid inside that cools down the batteries. So far, so good? Okay! And then these high voltage lines are going to come across through the center of the vehicle. You can see the orange tubing right there. And those high voltage lines come all the way back here to the second battery pack, which we have a nice little On/Off switch there. And they also provide power to the rear motor, which I think sums up all the big parts. So tell me about the frame though...because obviously this frame wasn't designed for the Tesla motor, right? That is correct.

So this was designed for a Honda Accord drivetrain, so I had to do a few modifications. This goes a little faster than a Honda Accord, right? Yes, quite a bit faster. And how fast have you taken this so far? Probably not above 60. Whatever you can do in a parking lot. Okay. Let's talk about the low voltage system for a second because I want to know how that works. So low voltage...this is kind of my center node of everything. I've done this somewhat old school so everything's kind of based on relays. This is all the things to control headlights, turn signals, On/Off switch, hazards. So where is the 12 volt battery at? So that's on the other side. So we have the 12 volt battery. So power comes into the car from the wall.

Where's the plug? So this is my vehicle charge port. This is still a work in progress. Duct tape is just part of the masterpiece. Power comes from the wall to the charge port. Right here we've got...this is our on-board charger, so this converts it from 220 volts to most likely four hundred volts which will charge the battery. apart from that you simply got your DC-to-DC convertor. That's about the only other kind of system. And the reason we need a high voltage and low voltage system is because we're not going to have our headlights and the horn run off of 400 volts. That would be overkill. So we've got 2 systems, one to run the lower power stuff, so one to run the motor and wherever we want, you know, all of the big power. Speaking of big power, these wheels are insane. Check this out. So are these from a Honda Accord as well? No. Are they part of the Tesla system? No. So the rotors, the suspension, that's all part of a Tesla system.

The wheels are not. The wheels are just what fit the car. So they are 19 inch rims. 325 30 19. So this is the rear battery pack here. Front battery pack over here. And we have one battery cell...or I guess one battery module right here, and we're going to weigh it and see how many of these are in the car? We have 12 in the car. And this weighs....40 pounds! Oh my gosh. So 12 x 40. 480 pounds worth of batteries. Did you know that?

The wheels are not. The wheels are just what fit the car. So they are 19 inch rims. 325 30 19. So this is the rear battery pack here. Front battery pack over here. And we have one battery cell...or I guess one battery module right here, and we're going to weigh it and see how many of these are in the car? We have 12 in the car. And this weighs....40 pounds! Oh my gosh. So 12 x 40. 480 pounds worth of batteries. Did you know that? Yeah. It all came on one pallet. It was very heavy. So even though this whole contraption is much lighter than a Tesla, the batteries still make up the bulk of the weight because the frame doesn't weigh that much, right?No. Okay, so you've built this whole thing in your garage, right? Yes. And does it move yet? Yes it does. Can we try it? Let's do it. Okay, sweet. I trust it, duct tape and everything.

Let's go. So basically that kicks on their 12 volt system which turns on the controller. The controller turns on the contactors for the high voltage. And the engine is revving right now, right? We're good to go. The only sound you'll hear is actually the fluid pump. This factor is nice. Alright, let's go. This is so small it's almost like getting in Dan's Roadster. Alright, so we are missing a couple things, like a windshield. Do you have seat belts? Alright, I'm ready. So your problem isn't power, your problem is traction. Yes. You can't stick to the ground long enough to actually get full speed. Yes, that is true. So right now we are at about two-thirds power. So we're at about 340 kilowatts. So it can go up to 620. 475. So 620 horsepower. Alright, so even though it's cold...what is it? Like 32 degrees? It's like freezing. Even though it's cold, we're going to try to see how fast we can accelerate and see what the 0-60 time is. That's on me! -Okay, it's the driver.

Round two. We hit 60...I don't know how fast... Yeah getting out of the seat belt is much easier than getting in it. So like we mentioned earlier, there are 2 battery packs and they are supplying enough volts to this motor is overdoing it on the ability facet of things. we tend to ar simply losing traction with however powerful this is often. Are you ready? Oh my gosh! That's insane. That's incredible. Every time, huh? Well if you want it to, yeah. When you use a Tesla motor, what do you get? So again, it's kind of the controller. The motor could be a motor – terribly powerful motor. The controller is reasonably what permits you to use that power. So depending on what controller you have and what settings you have, that kind of allows you to do kind of whatever you want. That's incredible. So basically in here we have the Tesla motor, but we have none of the Tesla safety precautions which makes it a whole lot more fun.

How would traction control work if you wanted it, I guess. We would need wheel speed sensors in the front to kind of make sure that it knows when the back wheels area unit spinning quicker than the front. So without delay once he peels out, the tires area unit slippery however the pc has no plan as a result of there are not any sensors wherever the tires area unit at. Which for some people would be an inconvenience...I kind of like it though. So the only thing that's kind of glitchy is the gear selector. So you have to take off the steering wheel to get out? Trust me, it's necessary. Is that going to be fixed later on, or is that just how it is forever? With this car that's how it is forever. So can you imagine the steering wheel on? Right. So now if I take my foot off the brake.

Put on the gas. Rolling backwards a little. Alright! Yes! This is so smooth. Yeah. It's like...cuz in a normal car you have everything protected and you have.. Yeah, this is very raw. This is like a skeleton, no safety sensors. I mean I have...the steering wheel falls off. This is just like a Roadster. Now that we're both sufficiently frozen, what is the toughest a part of building your own DIY Tesla? I would say it's perseverance. I think you've got to really love the build. That's I think the hardest part. Because you started with just a bare metal frame, right? -Yeah. There are so many components. Because you have to think about it...there's the steering, there's the braking, there's the headlights, taillights, there are so many different parts to this thing. Are you a normal guy who just decided to do this? Or are you an expert in vehicles? Pretty normal guy.

To me, like I said, it's kind of always been a passion of mine to build a car. So just finally got the guts to do it and I've loved it. So again, it's all part of the process. You know, if you don't like the build, you're not going to like building. And so you wanted to build a car but you didn't want to start with something old school like a Mustang or something. You wanted to start with the hardest components... electrical components to work with. That's right. So i do know you are not through with this project nevertheless, however on your next project what would you change? I'd start from scratch. Like frame and everything? I would. I think it's been one of my biggest challenges is trying to squeeze things into spaces they weren't designed for. So we have a tendency to ar back within the garage once more and that i suppose one amongst consequent steps is that this. So what steps do you have left to finish off the body of your electric vehicle? Yeah, therefore these ar all the panels that I even have left to place on. heaps of covering material work. A lot of just fitting the panels so it gives it a good look. thanks.



source:  JerryRigEverything & Tesla