Weighing In

Today we finally took some tools to the CS. Before we tear it down, we thought we would repair the exhaust and service/adjust the clutch just so that we could run the car some. We will be selling off the entire drive train and wanted to shoot a driving video - running through the gears around town. Once we got the car up and took a deeper look, it was clear that a quick repair wasn’t going to happen. One of the downpipes bends had been pulled out of shape enough that it no longer lined up on each end. The other downpipe had taken a portion of the rear manifold with it. While it is all repairable, we decided that it was too “exhaustive” and time consuming. Any time spent here is going backwards from our actual goal, so we decided to move forward.


Weighing the CS

We want to weigh the four corners of the car so that we have a good basis for our new weight distribution. Our electric motor, batteries, and associated systems will replace an engine, a tranny, drive shaft, differential fuel tank, etc. The weight of our new systems can be equal to the items we remove , depending on the number of batteries we end up using. The minimum number of batteries to achieve the voltage and minimal driving range will weigh a tad less than our current drive train, but additional batteries to increase that range will add to the weight. We are somewhat flexible here, as we are not requiring a 300 mile-range car. We also don’t want to settle for 50 miles. Thus we need to weigh the car now, then weigh it again with it’s drive train removed. We can then begin that engineering. The good news here is that the CS is a fairly light car, weighing around 3100 lbs. It’s current successor can weigh 4500 lbs. Naturally our chassis and suspension is not built to handle that kind of weight, but we certainly do have a bit of room to play with and maintain a fairly light car.


To be economical, we built a pair of scales using some basic parts. Our scales are capable of measuring 600 lbs, so we configured them to measure half-weight. We verified our rig’s half-measurement by weighting an item directly, and then using the scale. Once satisfied, We rolled the front wheels onto the pair, keeping the rear wheels elevated the same amount as our scales. We swapped the scales around a couple of times to verify that the readings were coming back the same. I assume that our final measurements will be off by a very small amount, but certainly within just a few pounds at each wheel which is certainly close enough for our needs.

With a full tank of gas our CS weighs in at:

Front: 1743 lbs. (Drivers 916 lbs, Passenger 827 lbs.)
Rear: 1427 lbs. (Drivers 719 lbs, Passenger 708 lbs.)
Total: 3170 lbs.

Hood Upright Repair

The drivers side hood upright arm had been poorly repaired at least a couple of times and had failed again. We will likely move to a more modern and lightweight approach of gas-charged struts, but for the time-being we figured we should properly fix the stock setup. The sledgehammer that we had been using to prop the hood up has far more important jobs to do.

So that’s it for today. We hope to get in there again next week and have a drivetrain removal party.



Paul DexterComment