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Everything posted by CatBird

  1. Interesting information from the guy I mentioned Steve Normandin. A wealth of knowledge. We talked about esoteric subjects regarding Nikola Tesla, Ferme, Edison, Steinmetz, and the early cars and batteries. He was amazed that our car is so completely original! He was so fascinated by seel one in such condition, he walked by a 1916 Pierce Arrow and only noticed it later! <grin> When you are in love with something the rest of the world fades away! Some tips: In a series circuit (as I have) the weakest link is the weakest battery. One of my batteries was weak and putting out slightly less than nine volts, so that was the strongest current available. I am replacing that battery. Apparently, six-volt batteries have greater amperage. I would have more horsepower if I had all 6v batteries. Since I have 6 12v batteries to get 72v, I would have more power with 12 6v batteries which would give greater amperage. I have one wire that has been replaced, undersized, it is about ten gauge (red in the picture) and I am replacing it with 2 gauge. A bit of dielectric grease will help and I am cleaning all contacts, even though they seem pretty good. He thinks I have a 2hp motor and it could have more batteries. I am at 72v and could have 96v. It does struggle on some uphill drives. He also suggested I keep the speed down going downhill - using the brakes - to not overspin the motor. . He mentioned various viscosities for oil/lubrication. As we know to avoid detergent oils. That is about it, so we took the car around the neighborhood and had a good test drive!m It is a sweet little car. I certainly understand the fascination with the early cars over gasoline. It is very simple. Bulletproof. Quiet, only sound of the tires. Easy to start, you just move the lever forward. No noxious fumes. No cranking, No gear shift. No clutch. None of the complications of a gasoline or steam vehicle. Cool and sophisticated. A word I don't use often, it is green. My wife loves it. Certainly a women car. It is EASY! So I took another drive in our 1916 Pierce Arrow. I always get a thrill when that giant 525 cubic inch engine slowly turns over, catches and comes to life!
  2. I may have the answer to many questions. I have met a local guy who seems to have good knowledge of electric cars. He has restored several of these cars from the 1900s. He is coming by on Sunday to help me sort ours. He also suggested I get an AC/DC Clamp ammeter from Harbor Freight. He, of course, insisted I get a clamp ammeter that measures DC. Picking up one tomorrow. Looks like a good idea to have anyhow, but especially for an electric car. https://www.harborfreight.com/600a-t-rms-acdc-clamp-meter-64015.html I received a Schumacher battery charger that has 5 or 10 amp charge and can be regulated to 12 4o 72 volts. It has a timer, 12 hours or less. The timer has been added. Looks like a very professional job. This charger came with the car. It has been modified with a seven-pin trailer male connector that mates to a seven pin female connector that is connected to my car's wiring system. Guesstimating at 6 hours at 10 amps. Very simple and clean. The plug-in was way, up underneath the car. My docs suggested that I remove the key. then bring the lever forward to the largest speed (using all the batteries) to get a full charge. Seems like the perfect way to connect and charge the car. http://www.batterychargers.com/se-1072/
  3. Mike6024. Your link with pictures describes a 1903 Columbia that says it can have an "overload of 300%" and "24 cells". I would guess this is 24, 2volt cells = 48v, but if "300%" it could handle 144volts????. This car seems identical to ours. I have room for 8 12v deep cycle batteries. I have six in there right now and are not planning for any more! Yes, it is the only 1903 Columbus I can find and it is in original condition, down to the paint and leather fenders. I am overjoyed to have acquired it! Hope you all enjoy the fun of this fine old car! Looking over documentation, in the rewiring, they are recommending not over 72v total. Apparently, we have a 1 1/2hp motor. Higher voltages were used in later, larger cars that had 4 to 5 hp motors. BTW the brakes work very well. It only has them on the back wheels. There is no sound except the tires on pavement.
  4. WOW! You guys are very helpful! This is probably the same car as a Columbia, but ours is a Columbus. I had originally thought it was a Columbia. But, notice the Volt-Ampere meter shows (picture). I suppose this is the range?? I enlarged the Patent dates seem from '88 to '01. I also have information that the car was rewired in 2011. Motor, chain drives, cleaned and lubricated. By Art Lively in Chattanooga. I have contact info and am reaching out. In the documentation by Art, he felt it could have 6 12v batteries. I dunno.
  5. Thank you for all the help! I just received the car yesterday and have put a few miles on it. Love it, but does not happily go up a hill. I have four Interstate deep cycle batteries in good condition. Hyman had a similar car with Columbia badging, but the same car as ours otherwise, I think. I see seven 12v batteries in it. Could ours be able to use seven batteries? But do not want to hurt anything. https://hymanltd.com/vehicles/5729-1903-columbia-electric-runabout/ I am heading out for some Lexol leather conditioner!
  6. EXCELLENT IDEA! Getting modern car batteries that are powering a 115 year-old-car as well as a new electric car! I am being asked to be part of hybrid cars at a display in a local concourse. They might be interested in providing batteries for me. It would be wonderful to have cars spanning 115 years using the same batteries! I will follow up on this. The advertising possibility is fascinating! The car is being delivered today at 3:30p. I can't wait! The picture below shows the car in the seller's garage. It is presently on a trailer, to be delivered.
  7. Talked with Gregg. Had a great conversation. All is well!!
  8. The car has battery compartments in the front and in the rear. There are two more added in the front. Noticing that one of the batteries in my picture, says "Easy Start..." or something like that. I suspect the previous owner just grabbed a nearby battery and stuck it in. Agreeing with your suggestion, just get the cheapest deep cycle batteries we can find.
  9. OK, batteries, batteries, batteries .... The Smithsonian says: The 1904 Columbia electric runabout was built in Connecticut. Its 20 two-volt cells had a capacity of 120 ampere hours and the electric motor is believed to have been manufactured by General Electric. This vehicle’s total weight is estimated at 1,200 pounds. Apparently, the Columbia's maximum speed was 15 miles per hour and its range was approximately 40 miles. At the turn of the century, the Columbia was America's top-selling vehicle. Looks like I do need about 48 volts or 4 12volt batteries. Don't know about the ampere-hours? Best I can tell is that the ampere-hours is the measure how long the volts will last. I would guess that modern batteries have a lot more juice in the ampere-hours range, but as long as I am running at the right voltage, but the car will be happy. I also will carefully over everything and be sure that all is well. BTW, we name our cars after the previous owner. The Columbia was a Christmas present from Harold Coker (Coker tires) to his wife Lilian, know as "Lil" Someday come by and we will take a ride for you with Lil. ? just found an emoji that looks like a wall outlet.
  10. Did not know this. Been trying to find them on the Internet. Can't find my magazine. Can you give me a link?
  11. GREAT info! Looking at my picture, I do see a 6v battery. The seller had an awful ot of cars. I am sure he would grab a battery from a neraby project and stick it in there. He was also "frugal" so I doubt he bought new deep cycle batteries. So there is a grab bag of batteries and parts. Good idea to check with a local battery rebuilder. Will have more time to masticate the responses. Some GREAT ideas! Here are a few links about Columbia, and The Electric Vehicle Company http://www.kcstudio.com/colelect1903a2.html http://www.bruceduffie.com/columbiacar.html Smithsonian Museum describes the car as: The 1904 Columbia electric runabout was built in Connecticut. Its 20 two-volt cells had a capacity of 120 ampere hours and the electric motor is believed to have been manufactured by General Electric. This vehicle’s total weight is estimated at 1,200 pounds. Apparently, the Columbia's maximum speed was 15 miles per hour and its range was approximately 40 miles. At the turn of the century, the Columbia was America's top-selling vehicle.
  12. Some more pictures. It is reputedly belonged to film star Zasu Pitts. She is one of the funniest stars I have heard. I have a picture of our car with different sidelights. Looking for the original types. It is a stunning car and I am very grateful having been able to get it, and the people are wonderful. I feel like I have known them all my life. As you may notice, but the cars are secondary in my life, it is about people and relationships. Question: Can anyone identify the engine on the floor to the left of the charger
  13. Some very good ideas, as usual, Rusty! Especially have a forklift shop that can clean, lubricate and check for faulty wiring. I will find the type of original batteries and find in those voltage configurations. I had thought about finding an EVB (Electric Vehicle Battery) of some kind, but with a stepdown switch would not work. Will probably need a gel type charger, maybe something as you mentioned for a forklift or my wife's golf cart charger. My plan is car shows and can run it around Stone Mountain Park, it has over 15 miles of pavement, wonderful twisty roads, and a 25mph speed limit. There is also a huge number of roads in Stone Mountain Village(where we live) at 25mph also. Also, have quite of interest in some hybrid car manufacturers wanting to use it for a display with their cars. Great, great, great, great granddaddy!
  14. Yes,, it does have a step down three position switch. Not a rheostat. It does run the car at lower speeds by accessing different batteries giving varying amounts of electricity to the motor. Also, of course, it does the same three speeds in reverse. I will get full docs when I get the car. They have a 3 ring notebook full of specs and information. The seller thinks it should run on four 12volt batteries, but this would be 48volts fully stepped up. Mine has three 12v batteries in the rear and two in the front. it easily could hold 6 or maybe seven. A 1918 Rauch and Lang electric was a much larger car and ran at a faster speed. Possibly it carried larger battery pack? I got my car from an estate. The previous seller also had a 1918 Rauch and Lang electric, might be the same car? When I test drove my car, it barely moved. I suspect the batteries in it was quite dated and not transmitting much power. I think I agree with your - Restorer32 - assessment of getting gel batteries. The son of the deceased seller has a "massive charger" made for our car. I want to have a bit of zip when I get the car on Sunday and think I should get ready with four gel deep cycle batteries and determine if it needs even more. Top speed was 18mph and I don't want to stress it.
  15. Thanks for all the above, <grin> https://hackaday.com/2018/05/02/oddball-mercury-vapor-rectifier-is-a-tube-geeks-delight/ looks like fun. I told the seller that I might take an old neon transformer, two straigntened out coat hanger wires and make a jacobs ladder as part of this display. The transformer in the picture has never worked in any recent times and I doubt it ever would! I would not even want to try it or I might be taking my last ride in our flower car you restored for Shep. Good question is that the 84v is AC in the plaque, right? Do I need 84V to power the car? It seems to say 24V to 48V in the docs. I will get complete docs on Sunday when the car arrives, but I want to have fresh batteries when it get here. I also see deep cycle batteries anywhere from $86 to $400. What is the difference? Should I get two? Four? Or Seven? Thanks, Bill
  16. I have acquired a 1903 Columbus electric car. [edited: There were several similar cars in 1903. One was a Columbia, made in Hartford Connecticut, and ours was made by Columbus in Columbus Ohio) Some confusion about batteries needed. It has four 12v deep cycle batteries will work, but the batteries are old and not fully moving the car well. I want to upgrade to newer batteries. Any ideas of alternates or Deep Cycle (and the car can run on 48v to 84 volts). Golf cart batteries are an alternative, maybe heavy equipment? The charger shown is original, but probably no longer works. The car is in original, excellent condition even though the patent leather fenders are showing a little age
  17. In further reading you are correct. The run was made by a Columbia Gasoline touring car, 24hp. My initial confusion the car was made by the Electric Vehicle Company that made Columbia electric cars. http://www.bruceduffie.com/1903.html
  18. How did a car with a 40 mile range run nearly 800 miles?
  19. Interested in the 1903 Columbia electric car.
  20. I would also agree with you and your wife. However, we have seven acres of land and the buildings are not close to the house. The house is a brown two-story log cabin (It was the Multipurpose building for Gables Academy) about 4,000 sqft, 28 feet tall. We live there. Same brown as the buildings, but hard to see each other through the trees. The "Storage Building" is nearly 2,000 sqft and was the dormitory for the teachers and was the cafeteria for the school. We are using half of it for storage and the rest will be guest rooms, and you are welcome to visit! Our house and Plat showing the buildings, cabin, and lake. We are one-mile walk from Stone Mountain Park.
  21. I am fortunate to have a wife who loves the old cars. I told her she can buy as many shoes as many tools I buy. It works out! This is us with our 1920 Cadillac. She only said the new buildings must have bathrooms. I agree.
  22. Building two garages on our land in Georgia. Two metal buildings. One as a display for about 14 cars it is 80x100 feet. 14-foot eaves and 16-foot gable. Red iron skeleton. Skinned out in metal. Clear space. I will have FOUR Commercial 2000 rollup doors on one side, three doors 12wx10h and 12x12 and another 12x12 door on the far side so to drive through one side and straight our the far side. The four doors on one side should make it easier to bring cars straight in with minimal turning radius. Pad is 5" high-pressure concrete with fiberglass reinforcement and rebars. Of course much thicker at support attachments over hard red clay ground. 4" insulation walls and roof. Nucor Building systems. The secondary work area and modern car parking. The building will be 30 feet by 60 feet, also 14' eaves and 16' gable. This building will have four 12x10 roll-up doors on one side. Same other specs. Both buildings will have commercial walk through doors. Buildings will be burnt slate color with evergreen doors and trim. Similar to the building below except the colors in mine will be reversed - building reddish brown and doors evergreen and my roll-up dors will be in the sides of the buildings. The red iron structure is also as an example, but ours will be similar, but to our size footprints. The CAD drawings are our exact structures. Basic blank boxes that I can modify as desired, windows, skylights, awnings, etc. My plans have been approved and permitted will begin as soon as the concrete guy can get here. Buildings are to be delivered May 11 or 18th.
  23. Hmm, no responses. Well. . . . . Just for the record, we just got our permits and are ready to begin by pouring foundations.
  24. Very simple flexible plastic slotted tube that fits over your trailer ball in your truck bed. Sight in on the yellow tube, back slowly until you gently knock over the yellow tube and you are perfect to hook up! It just takes less than a minute and perfect!!!
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