Society of Robots - Robot Forum

Electronics => Electronics => Topic started by: Schlayer on September 29, 2015, 01:21:36 PM

Title: Gas to Electric Conversion - for a Riding Mower
Post by: Schlayer on September 29, 2015, 01:21:36 PM
Yes, you read right. I don't know that it's been done before, but I'm sure it's doable. Long story short, I'm working with a team of fellow college students at the University of Rochester and we wish to replace broken or otherwise nonfunctional gasoline engines from a couple of riding lawn mowers with brushed DC motors.

We will be entering a competition called Solar Splash and ultimately our plan is to practice with a couple broken down mowers to prepare us for the conversion we'll use to power our competition boat, where we plan to replace the engine in a gas outboard with our hella-powerful 3-phase AC motor that was used in competition last year. We are also doing this since we happen to have two spare motors and controllers, some space in our budget, and driving quiet electric riding mowers around campus would be super awesome.  ;D  [At first we wanted to make Go-Karts, but the time and effort necessary to build a whole chassis and especially a steering mechanism and suspension would be far too great. Broken mowers are all over craigslist for next to nothing, and have steering, drive train, suspension, and brakes all working already, plus they are nearly all conveniently rear-wheel drive.] Currently though, we need to think of what kinds of problems the conversions might present, and how to overcome them. So far we have thought of the following issues:

If you have any thoughts and/or suggestions, by all means let me know!

-- Schlayer