EcoRider: Batteries and Racks

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by Tim Fulton on December 11, 2009

This entry is part 8 of 15 in the series Ecorider

It has been a while since the last update on the EcoRider. The progress lately hasn’t been all that fast. However, headway is being made. I’m actually a bit behind with the blog updates on it. Head over to the build thread if you want to get completely caught up.

Recently, I purchased three new batteries for the mower. They are group 31 12V deep cycle 150Ah lead acid batteries from Remy Battery, a local battery supplier. Unfortunately, my specific batteries aren’t listed on the site. They are identical in size to the gel batteries I had borrowed before.

ecorider

After much thought, I decided that the best arrangement for the batteries was to have two of them in back to get weight over the rear wheels, and one up in front of the motor. So, I started making the rear rack. It is fairly simple and bolts right to existing holes in the frame. I didn’t want to weld directly to the frame. Bolting allows me to much more easily modify the racks if need be. I also designed the rear rack to retain use of the hitch which I do have a trailer for.

ecorider

Next up was the front rack. This too was bolted down to the mower frame for ease of removal. I also had to jack it up to clear the PTO pushrod. It looks pretty close to the motor, but I left about a 1/4″ gap.

ecorider

All in all, I’m very happy with the racks. The batteries fit great in them, they are very solid, and they are fairly easy to install and remove should any modification be necessary. The rear rack is great because it leaves the batteries exposed for easy access to check the water level. It also makes it very easy to charge them since, I’m just using a 12v charger and charging the batteries individually right now. The cover and grill will be going back on the mower and will cover up the front battery once I get the rest of the details ironed out and the mower working.

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