A bit of open source EVing…


I’m working on my EV, a 1985 VW CityStromer. I’m hoping to get it up and running again by Easter. Right now, she’s off the road with a bit of Motor Bother.

Over the Winter Tigger has not been getting a nice time of it. I haven’t been able to store her indoors, and the weather has been really wet. As a consequence, some of the damp from outside has got inside. So I’ve resorted to heating the car with a little 200W heater. Not exactly what you’d call ideal, but it’ll do for now. 

However, I’m hoping that the new year (Happy New Year, by the way) will bring good things for the VW EV I own. I’ve already got a garage full of spare parts, including a tow-bar, a rear bumper, a front bumper and even a quad-light grille. Oh yeah. I’m talking serious fun. It’s also occurred to me that the VW logo is about the right size to hinge up and reveal a 16 A charging inlet. I’ll think about that one some more, I think. (I’d also thought about casting a plastic VW grille badge in see-thru plastic and then hiding LED lights behind it so that it lit up while charging. We’ll have to see…

But I digress. This isn’t the purpose of my post. The purpose of my post is that I’ve started to work on a little coding. Now, I’ve never coded before really, and my Wife is a professional programmer. She took one look at my code this morning and re-wrote a whole lot of it. Finally, it’s starting to make sense. So I thought I’d share it with the world. 

Take a look, and please let me know what you think! (No-one has de-bugged yet, and it’s a work-in-progress)

At the moment, the code controls the car’s ‘boot up’ sequence. I want to introduce safety measures on Tigger the Ev so that she doesn’t just start up as soon as the ignition is on. (With kids on the way, I figured that would be kind of dangerous… I’ve also had a silly moment when I accidentally drove away with the car still plugged in. This code will, hopefully, eliminate that! )

The file is attached at the end of this post. It’s written for Arduino. If you can code, let me know what you think! 





Add yours →

  1. Man I absolutely LOVE that electric VW Golf Nikki! Make it run like new again and keep me happy!


  2. Nikki Bloomfield January 3, 2010 — 10:41 pm

    Have no fear! I need to buy a new set of batteries for her. And I’m still debating what to do about the blown motor. But rust-wise, there’s hardly any. I’ve seen four year old cars with more rust than this puppy!Nikki.


  3. Nikki, the code/logic looks good, but I’m no expert. Xinmyname will be most able to read it for logic faults or omissions. But, this looks like the beginning of a BLAST project! I’m going to follow this one.MDF


  4. In the loop "var < 1000", in function CheckForStarter, there’s no delay. The Arduino will execute that loop really quite fast, maybe faster than you’d like. But more to the point, the compiler can optimise the code really rather well, and may decide that the entire loop is redundant! Try adding a small delay, just a millisecond or so, with ‘delay (1);’.In fact, you may find that the best way to start is by drawing a time-line of what you want to happen. Show all the trigger events such as the key operations and pedal sensors. Then, write the code with the time-line as a reference.


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