Build Your Own Electric Vehicle

Build Your Own Electric Vehicle

  • ISBN13: 9780071543736
  • Condition: New
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Go Green-Go Electric! Faster, Cheaper, More Reliable While Saving Energy and the Environment “Empowering people with the tools to convert their own vehicles provides an immediate path away from petroleum dependence and should be part of the solutions portfolio.” – Chelsea Sexton, Co-founder, Plug In America and featured in Who Killed the Electric Car? “Create a superior driving experience, strengthen America, and restore the planet’s ecosystems…that’s the promi

Rating: (out of 55 reviews)

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5 thoughts on “Build Your Own Electric Vehicle

  1. Review by for Build Your Own Electric Vehicle
    This 310 page book is more than its title implies. It is an
    excellent source of information, even if one is just
    interested in learning more about the subject of electric
    vehicles. Mr Brant’s credentials include a degree in
    engineering, and having worked on the Lunar Rover.

    He begins his book by exploring the appropriateness of the
    electric vehicle from an environmental standpoint. He
    then quickly reviews the history of the EV, from the
    mid 1800’s to the present. He does a good job of surveying
    the current (as of late 1993) crop of electic vehicle
    producers, as well as the plans of the major auto makers
    for electrics.

    Brant devots a chapter to the options available to the
    person who wants to own an electric vehicle today: Buy
    a ready to run car from a manufacturer or converter, have
    one built or converted for you, or do the conversion
    yourself. One option that he seems to largely discount is
    the option of buying a used EV. Although such vehicles
    can be somewhat hard to find, especially away from large
    cities on the coasts, they can put a person into an EV
    for much less money and work than any other alternative.

    As you might expect from the book’s title Brant favors
    the self-conversion option. He compares the various types
    of motor vehicles as conversion options; passenger cars,
    vans, and small pickup trucks. His conclusion, that a
    small pickup truck might be the easiest to convert, while
    giving the best range, seems a valid one, as long as a
    small pickup meets your needs, and suits your style.

    Chapter 5 is an excellent reference listing suppliers,
    EV clubs, and various converters and manufacturers.

    With Chapter 6 Brant begins the real meat of the book.
    He presents formulae and charts that allow you predict
    the performance of the vehicle you choose for conversion,
    and pick the size of motor and batteries that you will

    The next chapters are devoted to each of the unique
    systems of an EV in some detail: Electric motors,
    controllers, batteries, and chargers. To this reviewer,
    these chapters are the most valuable, and make this book
    useful to anyone with an interest in Electric Vehicles.
    The current state of the art is reviewed for each of these
    systems in some detail and with an eye toward practical
    maintanence and selection, and upcoming technology is also

    Surprisingly, only one chapter of the book covers
    the actual conversion process. Although there is probably
    enough detail here for the experienced home mechanic or
    mechanically inclined individual, someone who has never
    pulled an engine out of a car, or done other major repairs
    on his own, will probably need more help; especially if
    his conversion is not of a small pickup truck.

    All-in-all there is a lot of good information in this
    book, and it is a vital addition to the library of any
    would-be electric vehicle converter, owner or pipe

  2. Review by Bromo for Build Your Own Electric Vehicle
    This book is a great reference for anyone interested in the trade offs when creating an electric vehicle.

    This is focussed on someone who wants to convert an internal combustion car to an electric vehicle, but if you are interested in understanding EV’s in general it is a good resource, though it is pretty detailed and technical.

    If you are not technically inclined you shouldn’t despair, though it is clear that if you are not handy, EV conversion might be VERY difficult. This book will allow you to at least begin to understand the tradeoffs and how to create a conversion system.

    All around great reference.

  3. Review by Alan McFarlane for Build Your Own Electric Vehicle
    I think Bob Brant really wants to help you build an electric vehicle. I feel, however that his engineering background causes him to “talk down” to the reader, who thinks ” It can’t be really as complex as all this ! All these formulas , etc ! ” How do we know the “flux level” for a motor we buy at a garage sale ? I am too old to get an engineering degree !
    Lots of “shade tree” mechanics ( like me ) will have to look further for more practical information.Such as – a 10 HP motor in a Geo Metro will be fine for trips to the grocery store but no good for highway use. Also errors have crept in, and the schematic diagrams are incomplete and puzzling. Of course, the book was published nine years ago, and technology has advanced in the EV industry, as in everything else

  4. Review by Serge Kuzin for Build Your Own Electric Vehicle
    No matter if you just want to learn a little more about EV technology or consideting to build your own Electric Car, this book will give you a wealth of information on all sorts of EV related topics. The book starts with EV history, then goes into EV practicality, then onto currently (well in 80’s) available off the shelf technology, vehicle design, physics and aero dynamic principles and finally you get a walk through an actual EV conversion process. I like this book for the way it’s formed and the way it flows. The author writes in plain language with plenty of advise and tips. Everything is simple, just like an EV is such a simple machine at it’s core. After reading this book, you will get a clear picture where technology stands with EVs, why Internal combustion engine dominated our means of transport and finally how to desing and construct your own EV. Overall great book. One drawback however, this book is written in 80′ and has a lot of hopes in it, which is sad to read at times. Like when author talks about newly developed prototype of GM Impact (later renamed EV1) the author puts high hopes for this progect, yet we all know what happened to this effort. You will want to read “Convert it” by Michael Brown after reading this book.

  5. Review by James Clements for Build Your Own Electric Vehicle
    This is an exceptional book for anyone looking to get the initial know-how on how to convert a gas vehicle to an electric vehicle (EV). It’s full of resources to help you find the parts you are looking for to do your EV project, and it actually does a conversion in the last chapter. There are a couple things you don’t hear much about in the book, such as the insidious re-wiring of the dash board, and it sort of glazes over a couple minor issues, but all in all, it’s the best resource I’ve found yet for converting to an EV. The history buffs will enjoy the detailed history of the EV, and if you work for NASA, there are a ton of great physics problems (15, I think) to keep your brain moving. Don’t let the math scare you, I discovered that “eyeballing” it works most of the time, and if it didn’t work, I would just pull out the old calculator and scratch pad. My advice would be that even if you aren’t planning on “Building your own EV”, you should buy this book. It’s full of great stuff.

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