143: Thursday 6th May 2010

You may remember I had mentioned that the mileage counter was not working and I now know how important this is. I had a disaster on the way to work. My wife had asked me to drop off some paperwork on my way in, so I set out with the paperwork and arrived at work and it was still on the passenger seat, damn! I had gone to work in sport mode as it is only 7 miles and this is easy, but now I had to go part way back and return to work. Without the mileage counter I had no idea how far I had gone and I thought it was only an extra 2 miles, but it turned out to be about 11 miles extra round trip. I got within 1 mile of my work and could go no further without going really slow and damaging the batteries. So I had to get a tow for the last mile. I did stick it in 5th gear and let the regen charging put some back while I was being towed. I had to wait about 30 minutes for rescue and ended up about an hour late for work. I had originally arrived early. I now appreciate how important the mileage indicator is and when I got home from work I set about fixing the counter. I stripped the instrument cluster out of the car and took the counter mechanism apart. When I was drilling the holes for the LEDs on the back of the fuel gauge markings, a tiny piece of the plastic swarf had gone in the cogs and jammed them. I gave it a quick blow, put it back together and it is all working again now. No more range anxiety! Next job is to build a bar graph driver circuit for the 'motor amps' meter LEDs, get the LEDS and mount them. Until then I have the rectangular LED bar graph matrix that I used for the temporary fuel gauge to get started with.

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