January 20, 2003

Building a front battery box

When we sit down and count exactly where we can fit our batteries, we decide it would be better to add a front battery box than triple stack batteries inside the driver compartment. This will keep the vertical center of gravity lower. We measure the area in the front and design a battery box.

This time we use 1 by 2 inch rectangular tubing. The 2.5 inch diameter batteries will require a higher battery cover but this will allow us to fit the battery box easily. The shape is a basic rectangle. We cut the tubing at 45 degrees and lay the shape out on the welding table.
laying out the front battery box

First we tack weld the corners. Then finish the welds. It is important to use clamps to hold the pieces in place. It also helps to weld a little and then move to a different section. Too much heat and there will be too much warpage.

checking for square
 
When the basic rectangle is done, we add two vertical beams to help secure the box to the car. tacking the vertical bar
 
The end result looks like this. The frame weights 12.5 lbs. front box
 
It looks better with some paint. Note the tape covering surfaces that get welded to the car. painted front box
 
The front battery box fits in front of the cross member and the lead edge goes beneath the radiator. front battery box in place
 
We use straight edges to extend the flat bottom from the center of the car. This gives us the mark for what height to put the battery box. We use clamps and shims to hold it for welding. We weld the rear vertical bars to the car.
rear support welded to car
 
The front of the battery box gets welded to the chassis in two three inch spots. battery box welded in place
 

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