156: Monday 31st August 2010

I have now had the new batteries installed for just over one week and I have had almost no issues. The racks were about an inch too wide and as a result of this, the batteries shift when I go round a corner and this is stressing the hold down brackets. This is easily cured by just pushing the batteries to one side, then packing the bracket out with a piece of wood to stop them from shifting. It is not doing any harm that I can see, but I guess in the long term something is likely to break or wear through, so I shall fix this soon. It is a bit disconcerting when heavy cornering and you get a bump as 400kg of batteries suddenly shift to one side. I shall have to slow down a bit on corners until I have them packed out. The problem with the racks is that they were made using the measurements given by the manufacturer of the batteries and the reality is a few millimeters different, and when you have several batteries in a string, you get the accuracy exaggerated. This is why the racks were too short and too wide. Next time I shall fit the rack to the batteries exactly by laying the whole lot out beforehand. Anyway, some good news, I have achieved 30 miles on a single charge for the first time. I expect this figure will go up in the next few weeks as the batteries become further conditioned and depending on the journeys I do. I am pleased also that this 30 miles was made up of several short, stop-start type journeys, some night driving with lights and after being left over night as well. So this is almost the worst case. I guess that will come with the winter cold and darkness. However, I shall always be able to get to work even if this is completely in the dark with the heater and lights on the whole time with plenty of battery to spare.

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