Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Electric cars, trucks, ATVs, NEVs - things bigger than a motorcycle.
Post Reply
HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Dec 12 2020 6:35pm

Hi all! Maybe not the typical project here on ES, but I thought I should share anyway. Basically everything I've learnt about electric conversions is from this forum, so maybe someone reads something interesting in this thread :)

I already converted an 2wd basic ATV with a QS3000w motor and 20 LEV40 cells from an Mitshubishi Outlander PHEV. Figured we could use something a little more of a workhorse, and I already got lots of LEV4 cells left from the Outlander pack. So when a poor old 6x6 showed up in the classifieds I went and picked it up. It is a 93 Polaris Big Boss 6x6. I am not sure about how some of these ended up with diesel motors, because when I look up the VIN number the information about engine is missing. So I guess its some hack that is done after it left Polaris factory. It is maybe one of the worst motors I can think about putting in an ATV. 400cc single cylinder air cooled diesel with a whopping 10hp. Original motor was blown, so the previous owner had sourced another one and started to install it before he got tired of it and bought another ATV.
IMG_12122020_233941_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_233941_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (278.6 KiB) Viewed 782 times
IMG_12122020_234054_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_234054_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (257.47 KiB) Viewed 782 times
Worlds first and hopefully last.....
IMG_12122020_234126_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_234126_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (188.64 KiB) Viewed 782 times
So the plan is:
- QS 3000w motor with Votol controller (72150 I think t was)
- Keep the transmission for high torque low speed performance
- 18S 2P LEV40 battery
- CA V3 for display and throttle adjustment
- Victron MPPT unit for charging 12V battery for winch and other accessories (thanks john61ct for the tip)
- Get it up and running ASAP and do all the little things and bugfixes before summer

I could not find an off-the-shelf sprocket for the gearbox bigger than 12T, and only for 520 chain. I would like it to be bigger because of the wear, but I will see hot it works. I also sourced a sprocet for 520 chain on the QS splines.... JFT1903. Went with a 14 tooth, which shud give me about 38kmh before field weakening in high gear (total gear ration from gearbox to wheel is 12:1 in hgh and 24:1 in low).

Not much progress yet, but I have removed the old diesel and instaled the QS.
IMG_12122020_234331_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_234331_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (307.16 KiB) Viewed 782 times
IMG_12122020_234311_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_234311_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (281.41 KiB) Viewed 782 times
I need to be able to tighten the chain, and was hoping to avoid idler sprockets. Hopefully this will be strong enough.

Some of the cells:
IMG_12122020_234412_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_234412_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (347.68 KiB) Viewed 782 times
I have started with the battery boxes. I will divide them in two boxes. 9S 2p each. They will be located under the cargo bed. It is just enough space for the tires when it gets loaded up, but I have ordered 2" spacers for the rear wheels, so it will be plenty (I hope). I have kept the plastic containers for he cells, so they sit perfect isnide the metal box. Not the most energy dense cells, but they are powerful and easy to work with. And they seem to have a long life. I am using abut 35AH per cell on my other ATV, so this pack should be about 4.6kwh usable energy. The ATV will be used locally, so I think it will be enough. The cells can take quite fast charging, so I will get a fast charger if I end up using it a lot.
IMG_12122020_234435_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_12122020_234435_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (254.35 KiB) Viewed 782 times
More to come soon!
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

saskatchewanian   100 µW

100 µW
Posts: 7
Joined: Sep 26 2020 3:14am
Location: Saskatchewan, Canada

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by saskatchewanian » Dec 13 2020 5:22am

I'm curious what you need a 6x6 for, and if you are pulling anything with it I would suggest getting some weight forward.

I used one for a bit on a fireline and we had to put about 150 lbs of gear on the front rack so it could turn when pulling a small pumper trailer. It could sure pull in a strait line, but without extra weight on the front good luck turning!

HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Dec 13 2020 6:09am

Floatation in soft terrain, and to carry stuff without pulling a trailer all the time. Never tried a 6x6 before, so I guess I will find out if it is useful or not... Might have to put some weight up front if it is totally useless.
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Dec 19 2020 4:50pm

Some progression.... I am once again surprised how much time it takes to assemble the battery pack, even if these LEV40 cells are rasy to bolt together.

Got the battery boxes welded to the ATV
IMG_19122020_215348_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_215348_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (314.49 KiB) Viewed 672 times
Got the 2" spacers for the rear wheels. Needed them to get some clearance to the battery boxes. Hopefully enough to use some snow chains as well now. Dont know how much this stuff flexes when innuse. I will find out. Will probably need some for the front wheels as well to compensate, I suspect it will turn even worse now :P
IMG_19122020_215422_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_215422_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (249.29 KiB) Viewed 672 times
IMG_19122020_215449_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_215449_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (286.03 KiB) Viewed 672 times
I used the links that came with the Outlander pack for most of the battery, but since I am using 2p configuration I came out short. Found a 15mm copper pipe hiding in the corner and made some bus bars. With 1mm wall it is 44mm2, so one would probably be enough. Since I am not sure how pure thw cooper is, Im using 2 stacked on top of each other. Hopefully it will work.
IMG_19122020_215556_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_215556_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (247.64 KiB) Viewed 672 times
I ordered a "450 A" bluetooth aliexpress BMS since I have used quite a few if the smaller ones before, and they seems quite reliable. This one was a lot bigger than expected, though. Thought I had made the battery boxes more than big enough, but I barely got it stuffed in on top of the cells. I will add some insulation material on top, and the cells will get squeezed when I attach the cover, so hopefully there wont be any wire-eating movement in there. Hope this will last some years before I will have to remove the covers and mess with them!
IMG_19122020_215620_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_215620_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (297.84 KiB) Viewed 672 times
IMG_19122020_215737_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_215737_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (284.85 KiB) Viewed 672 times
IMG_19122020_224538_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_19122020_224538_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (258.75 KiB) Viewed 672 times
Just need to wire the main fuse, mains switch and throttle now, and then its time for test run
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Dec 28 2020 4:35pm

So, got the main switch and main fuse wired up, and got to do a test run. Had a lot of fun with trying to figure out the Votol controller, but at least it runs fine now. I re-used the old emergency stop switch as a park switch, and made a revere/normal/sport switch to go with it. Normal mode has soft start and 150Amp battery power, and sport mode has more direct start ans 220A. Reverse has about 50%of the power of normal mode. In addition I have the original gearbox, so I have Hi/Lo and reverse there as well. Low is great for the rough stuff when you want to crawl, an a reverse gear can be handy if you need full power in reverse for some reason.
IMG_28122020_221008_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_28122020_221008_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (294.1 KiB) Viewed 612 times
IMG_28122020_221048_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_28122020_221048_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (250.15 KiB) Viewed 612 times
IMG_28122020_221208_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_28122020_221208_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (371.77 KiB) Viewed 612 times
I have yet to install the Cycle analyst, so I just installed a temporary Ebay battery voltage display. I have left space for the external shunt in the main fuse bix. I have reveived the Cycle analyst now, so will get to install it soon.
IMG_28122020_221111_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg
IMG_28122020_221111_(1000_x_750_pixel).jpg (264.44 KiB) Viewed 612 times
The 12V battery and the winch is also left to be installed, so I just threw in a 12V converter to power up the 6x6 solenoids and the headlight.

Did get to change 3 og the 4 drive chains, so that was fun :p Seemed like the orings had just rotted away, but the sprockets was looking nice, so I dont think it has done many miles in the last 10-20 years.

As suspected, I need to look at the chain that between the motor and gearbox. I could only find a 12T 520 sprocket that had the correct chains, so it is a lot of noise. I made a cover with some saound-dampening stuff on the inside that heloed a lot, but its not ideal. Thin I need to get a custom sprocket so I can use 428 chain....
IMG_28122020_221408_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_28122020_221408_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (397.63 KiB) Viewed 612 times
Oh well, its coming along, it is driveable, and we are having some fun with it. New tires on its way as well, but I myst say it is crawling along a lot better than Inexpected on these 28 year old bald tires!
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

j bjork   10 kW

10 kW
Posts: 961
Joined: Aug 31 2018 3:01pm
Location: Linköping, Sweden

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by j bjork » Dec 28 2020 4:50pm

Congrats to the test drive :)
It seems like it took some construction beer to get there, like it always does :lol:

It must be nice with threaded terminals on the cells, mine has welded terminals in different materials..
What is the shiny black material on the batteries and charge port etc.?

HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Dec 28 2020 5:38pm

Thanks! Yes, construction beer is mandatory!

The LEV40 cells are easy to wirk with and puts out a decent amount if power, but they are not very energy dense. I dont remember, but I think the leaf modules you use are much better. Looks like a pain to worknwith, though... I think these cells have a steel container for each cell, maybe that is some of the reason they are so heavy. Even though they are easy to bolt together, I once again underestimated how much time all the small thing take when putting together a battery :p

Not sure what material you mean...? The things between the batteries are the plastic that was originally in the Outlander pack. The charge port, fuse box, display cover, etc are black petg from 3d printing. And the surprisingly glossy finish of the battery boxes are the Biltema cheap version of Hammerite, Hammarlack :)
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Dec 30 2020 1:31pm

Got around to install the Cycle Analyst yesterday. This Votol controller has been a pain to set up, as some of the parameters on this EM150sp seems to do completely different things than the same parameters on my one year old EM150sp. I finally got it to run decent, then wired it to be always in sport mode with 250A max current. I now use the Cycle Analyst to control power and throttle ramps. So much easier to work with!

I finally found a function in the Votol controller that both stops the vecicle while the throttle is applied, and also will not start when it is activated during power-on. "Stealavoid" worked, so it is now wired up to the emergency stop button right under the forward/reverse switch. Just in case I would need an emergency stop one day.

The external shunt was mounted in the box together with the main fuse. I let the cables and the length of the Bus bar (from Outlander pack) dictate the orientation, so its not 90 degrees anywhere :P
IMG_30122020_191339_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_30122020_191339_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (400.56 KiB) Viewed 559 times
IMG_30122020_192848_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_30122020_192848_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (425.11 KiB) Viewed 559 times


Together with the ATV I built for my wife last year. It has the same setup with QS138 motor and Votol Em150sp controller, but a 20s1p battery with LEV40 cells. Its quite nice to zip around on, and certainly a whole lot better than the 50cc that was in it before.
IMG_30122020_191409_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_30122020_191409_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (412.17 KiB) Viewed 559 times
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

HrKlev   100 W

100 W
Posts: 231
Joined: Dec 06 2019 10:24am

Re: Polaris 6x6 diesel(!) conversion build log

Post by HrKlev » Jan 24 2021 4:44pm

- Printing bushings in TPU actually works! Have no idea for how long :p

- Proper tires = more fun

- Added less deadband in cheap thumb throttle

Think I need to adress the noise this thing makes next. The 520 chain spinning at 4500 rpm and the straight cut gears in the transmission adds up!
Attachments
IMG_24012021_223942_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_24012021_223942_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (273.42 KiB) Viewed 417 times
IMG_24012021_224003_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_24012021_224003_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (418.57 KiB) Viewed 417 times
IMG_24012021_224026_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg
IMG_24012021_224026_(1080_x_1080_pixel).jpg (255.3 KiB) Viewed 417 times
DIY lightweight mid drive with torque sensing build thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=107622

Post Reply