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GeekEV
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:06 pm

Hi guys! If you want to buy adapters for use with this mod, please see this thread:

viewtopic.php?f=26&t=3085&start=0

2014 Chevy Spark EV 2LT
2013 Tesla Model S 60kWh[/url]
AV L2 EVSE + kWh meter
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garygid
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:07 pm

Having a Spare:

Having one EVSE plugged in (and or installed) "on the wall" in the garage, and a second EVSE (with socket adapters) in the car for use elsewhere, and as a spare ... makes a lot of sense.

So, consider ordering a full, new, complete modified (L1+L2) unit (about $725 was mentioned, I think), then get your original L1 modified AFTER the new L1+L2 is received.

Also, I am still hoping that the SPX EVSE will be available at a reasonable price.
See SOC/GID-Meter and CAN-Do Info
2011 LEAF, sold in 2015
2010 Prius, 2014 silver Tesla S
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kolmstead
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:56 am

And the result was... a normal overnight charge. It took four hours instead of three, as expected. I had the car set to preheat this morning; that worked perfectly also. Thanks, Ingineer. Great product and service.

-Karl

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Ingineer
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 9:40 am

You're welcome Karl! Thanks for the honest review!

Someone asked if charging would be affected by a long extension cord. The answer is; it depends. The longer your cord is times it's resistance per foot, the slower the charge will become, as power intended for your car is instead being used to heat the cord. Warning stickers on the EVSE tell you to never use an extension cord, and this is for good reason! Too much loss will shut the charger completely down, and could heat the cord to dangerous levels.

You can reduce the loss by using a heavy extension cord, and in fact, you really shouldn't consider using less than 12AWG at any time, as this could even be dangerous! Even at 12AWG 500 feet of cord would lose 40 volts on the EVSE! On 120V this would probably shut down the charger completely, and on 240v, you would lose almost 17% charging speed. Keep in mind, you would still be paying your Electric Co. for the full amount still!

I'd recommend you move to 10AWG for anything over 25 feet, and 8AWG for over 50. (8AWG has roughly half the loss as 12AWG!)

You can buy good quality cords with NEMA L6-20's on them, or make your own.

Also: NEVER leave unused cord bunched up or coiled in a tight bundle. Allow air to get to the cord so it can cool!

-Phil
Easily Learn Electricity HERE! - - - - Website: http://evseupgrade.com/ - - - - Like us on Facebook: EVSE Upgrade

wwhitney
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:10 am

Phil,

I've been following this thread from the beginning and have a few questions about your mod that I haven't seen answered, although I might have missed them:

1) You've more or less said that you consider the exact details of what you replace in the EVSE to be a trade secret, but I'm hoping you could provide a little more info without getting into the trade secrets. Is it correct that you replace the 12V transformer with a switching power supply (like a computer uses)? You also mentioned you replace a handful of other components that aren't rated for 240V. Are these basic circuit elements like resistors, capacitors, etc., or is there more to it?

2) Your mod involves partially depotting the circuit board inside the EVSE. Do you repot the board afterwards, or does the water resistance of the modified EVSE depend entirely on the outer shell of the case? Or do I misunderstand the reason the original circuit board was potted?

3) You mentioned that the OEM EVSE does not implement part of the J1772 spec, a "diode test". What is that and does your modified EVSE implement it?

4) One customer provided you with an EVSE without the plastic plugs in the bottom covering the screws holding the outer shell together. The returned EVSE had these screws covered with hot-melt glue. Was this a special endeavor to ensure the water resistance of the outer shell without the plastic plugs, or is this something you do to all your mods to make opening the modified EVSE more difficult?

Thanks,
Wayne

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Ingineer
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 10:46 am

wwhitney wrote:Phil,

I've been following this thread from the beginning and have a few questions about your mod that I haven't seen answered, although I might have missed them:

1) You've more or less said that you consider the exact details of what you replace in the EVSE to be a trade secret, but I'm hoping you could provide a little more info without getting into the trade secrets. Is it correct that you replace the 12V transformer with a switching power supply (like a computer uses)? You also mentioned you replace a handful of other components that aren't rated for 240V. Are these basic circuit elements like resistors, capacitors, etc., or is there more to it?

2) Your mod involves partially depotting the circuit board inside the EVSE. Do you repot the board afterwards, or does the water resistance of the modified EVSE depend entirely on the outer shell of the case? Or do I misunderstand the reason the original circuit board was potted?

3) You mentioned that the OEM EVSE does not implement part of the J1772 spec, a "diode test". What is that and does your modified EVSE implement it?

4) One customer provided you with an EVSE without the plastic plugs in the bottom covering the screws holding the outer shell together. The returned EVSE had these screws covered with hot-melt glue. Was this a special endeavor to ensure the water resistance of the outer shell without the plastic plugs, or is this something you do to all your mods to make opening the modified EVSE more difficult?

Thanks,
Wayne


1. There is no 12v transformer in the original EVSE. Because we don't condone or recommend non-qualified individuals attempting modification of their EVSE, we do not wish to encourage this, so details are intentionally not published. It requires a non-trivial time investment to properly develop and test such an upgrade. We concluded there is no valid reason to publish details, except to encourage DIY efforts, which could get people and/or property hurt. Given the amount of overhead involved in this work, we are offering the upgrade at a bargain. Thus, there really should be not be much motivation to attempt the modification yourself, unless you really know what you are doing, in which case you shouldn't be asking me for help! :-p

2. Yes, we are very careful about resealing everything. Everything is re-sealed with a top-grade GE silicone rated for high thermal conductivity and dielectric strength. The original design is potted for weather resistance, and we believe our upgrade preserves or even betters this protection.

3. The SAE J1772 specification wants the EVSE to distinguish between a low resistance pilot short (such as could be incurred in a puddle of salty/dirty water) and an actual vehicle, so they set up the vehicle end to include a diode, and the Pilot signal was designed to be able to detect whether the diode is present or not. This wasn't implemented (likely due to extra complexity) in most EVSE's I've tested, including this Panasonic unit, and the AV unit Nissan recommends. I too believe the "diode check" is overkill and unnecessary, the GFCI will take care of low resistance shorts, thus the EVSE design is adequately safe. We don't modify any of the core design elements of the EVSE, it's Pilot generation/detection circuity and logic, or the basic safety circuitry, so we do not change this lack of diode detection function.

4. Because the original EVSE design had hard rubber plugs sealing the screw holes, we found it prudent to preserve this seal. Because extraction of the original plugs leaves them in a condition that would degrade their sealing performance, we upgrade the seal with a special high-density sealant that adheres to the plastic to form a hermetic seal. Opening the EVSE voids our warranty, and since us opening the EVSE voids the factory warranty, you are left without a warranty if you unseal the unit. If you are comfortable without a warranty, then of course, you are free to do whatever you like. :D

-Phil
Easily Learn Electricity HERE! - - - - Website: http://evseupgrade.com/ - - - - Like us on Facebook: EVSE Upgrade

kolmstead
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:32 pm

It's been mentioned before, but for folks who don't yet have an EVSE, Ingineer's modification of the EVSE that comes with you LEAF is incredibly good news. If you have a dryer outlet available in your garage, you could spend about $200 for the modification, and save $2200 or more by never installing an EVSE from AeroVironment or other vendors. We're talking five to ten percent of the cost of the car!

I never considered my L1 EVSE to be more than an emergency power source, because recharging simply took too long. In fact, I never used it. On the other hand, running at 240V, the very same EVSE performs nearly as well as my AV EVSE.

If I were still waiting for my LEAF, I'd think seriously about getting the EVSE waiver from Nissan and having Ingineer turn my L1 EVSE into an L2 unit once I got the car. Since it's too late for me to do that, I am happy knowing that I have a backup L2 EVSE in case my AV unit fails. Redundancy is a good thing!

-Karl

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mwalsh
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 6:37 pm

kolmstead wrote:If I were still waiting for my LEAF, I'd think seriously about getting the EVSE waiver from Nissan and having Ingineer turn my L1 EVSE into an L2 unit once I got the car. Since it's too late for me to do that, I am happy knowing that I have a backup L2 EVSE in case my AV unit fails. Redundancy is a good thing!

-Karl


+1.

Am now also considering the purchase of a quick220 unit, to make traveling life even easier!
2011 Blue Ocean SL with 80,000 miles
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abasile
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 7:36 pm

mwalsh wrote:Am now also considering the purchase of a quick220 unit, to make traveling life even easier!

If you go ahead with a quick220, please let us know how it works out! :D
2011 LEAF at 71K miles, pre-owned 2012 Tesla S 85 at 98K miles
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Tesla battery: 250+ miles of range (-5% vs. new)

Stoaty
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Re: Nissan L1 EVSE third-party upgrade to both 120V and 240V

Wed Mar 23, 2011 8:49 pm

mwalsh wrote:Am now also considering the purchase of a quick220 unit, to make traveling life even easier!

Me too. I could drive 50 miles to Claremont, charge 4-5 hours at 240 volts at my sister's house while hiking Mount Baldy, then drive back to L.A. Might make it charging at 120 volt, depending on freeway driving speed, but this will give a better margin of safety.
2011 Leaf with 62,000 miles given to Nephew
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