mux
Posts: 265
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:52 am
Delivery Date: 13 Oct 2011
Leaf Number: 6177

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Sun Jan 05, 2020 6:23 am

knightmb wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 6:15 pm
Best news I've read this year! :mrgreen:
Is the gateway device easily upgradable should you need to make future tweaks? At least in the sense that it can upgraded some other way than device replacement.
We'll be releasing official firmwares anybody can flash via the USB port, and you can program it to your heart's content from a public repo that we're purposefully going to denounce so people can do stupid shit with it. There's a lot of fun but completely uninsurable modifications you can do to the car using the CAN bridge (like modifying the pedal response, adding features like Tesla's summon, etc.)

Edit: and when it's either bricked or if you want to do more than just flash programming, there's a PDI port on the CAN bridge that allows direct programming of the microcontroller. The MCU is an ATXmega32C4 running bare metal code (no RTOS or anything).

camasleaf
Posts: 654
Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:20 am
Delivery Date: 17 Jun 2011
Location: Camas, WA

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Sun Jan 05, 2020 8:11 pm

I plan to ship our 2011 Leaf SLe to Europe this summer. With the battery down below 60%, it will need a new battery to be a useful car there. Does anybody if is better to do the upgrade here in US or do it there in Eastern Europe. Labor will be cheaper there, but I am not sure what the logistic of moving a battery across EU countries are. How does the cost of a 40kWh or 62kWh battery compares between US an EU?
2011 SLe 06/17/11 Over 89000 miles 61%SOH 13.8kWh
2018 Honda Clarity PHEV
2014 Model S P85 77888 miles 256mile range
5.7kW DC Solar System

mux
Posts: 265
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:52 am
Delivery Date: 13 Oct 2011
Leaf Number: 6177

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 2:00 am

The US salvage yards tend to not understand the value of batteries, so they are often extremely expensive or surprisingly cheap with little consistency in between.

Used batteries are MUCH more common in Europe though, but the prices are fairly well-established now.

There is barely any labor involved in swapping the battery so I don't imagine that is going to be a big concern. Any car workshop will do that in an hour. If you use my mod, the 2011 does need some soldering work on the wiring which likely is the most time consuming part.

MikeD
Posts: 701
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:14 am
Delivery Date: 12 May 2011
Leaf Number: 592

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 3:25 am

mux: Does "some soldering work on the wiring" on the 2011 Leaf involve only wiring under/behind the dashboard? And is there any reason (after your device is sufficiently evolved/debugged, perhaps) not to have it installed in advance, so that the pack swap is the only step left (when a 40 kWh pack eventually becomes available)?

cwerdna
Posts: 10227
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2011 4:31 pm
Delivery Date: 28 Jul 2013
Location: SF Bay Area, CA

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 4:23 am

mux wrote:
Sat Jan 04, 2020 10:59 am
It was a known issue with our firmware for 40kWh swaps, I recently fixed it (at least for the 40kWh swap on DBT fast chargers) and hopefully that fix will work for Daklein too. He's compiling and flashing the latest version shortly I think.

The reason this happens is that DBT, Efacec and possibly some other chargers are programmed to terminate a charge at 100% indicated charge level. The Leaf has 4 (!) internal SOC states, two of which we modify with our firmware and two of which until recently were either unmodified or wrong in some sense. The car interprets those values as 100% (or, well, more than 100% if the new battery capacity is way more than the car is programmed to handle), forwards this over QC CAN and then the charger thinks 'hey, why are you trying to charge, you're full already!' and either fails the charge with a communication error or initiates and immediately stops the session.

As the three sub-generations of Nissan leaf with the old body style all use a slightly different way to calculate and display SOH in various places, this is a bit of a headache to properly fix. It is also fundamentally unfixable on the first generation (2010-13), so we employ a workaround that messes with Leaf Spy Pro data.
Wow, interesting. This is yet another thing the Fenix Power and other folks (embarking on similar things) I guess might need to deal with.

Sorry, I've not been following this thread but noticed that it's crazy that Daklein has a 62 kWh pack in a gen 1 Leaf. :ugeek: I noticed some discussion of heights and clearance earlier. I posted about what I'd learned about height and ground clearance differences with Plus vs 40 kWh non-Plus before it went on sale in the US at viewtopic.php?p=545740#p545740.

'19 Bolt Premier
'13 Leaf SV w/premium package (owned)
'13 Leaf SV w/QC + LED & premium packages (lease over, car returned)

Please don't PM me with Leaf questions. Just post in the topic that seems most appropriate.

mux
Posts: 265
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:52 am
Delivery Date: 13 Oct 2011
Leaf Number: 6177

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 7:52 am

MikeD wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 3:25 am
mux: Does "some soldering work on the wiring" on the 2011 Leaf involve only wiring under/behind the dashboard? And is there any reason (after your device is sufficiently evolved/debugged, perhaps) not to have it installed in advance, so that the pack swap is the only step left (when a 40 kWh pack eventually becomes available)?
Yeah - we're currently choosing to do the soldering near the VCM. The main issue keeping us from having a completely plug&play solution for the gen1 Leaf is the lack of connectorization and the impossible to procure connectors on both the battery pack and VCM itself. So the only way to interrupt the CAN bus is to literally cut it in half and solder our own connector onto there. Furthermore, the only place where a connectorized solution *could* sit is directly onto the battery connector, which is outside the car making firmware updates via, say, a USB cable challenging.

We're not just going for trivial stuff like swapping batteries. We want to keep updating and upgrading the cars. The Leaf is going to get 70kW+ DC fast charging, gen1 is going to get B mode, etc. etc. You can't sit still in an environment of ever more competitive and interesting new cars. We don't want anybody to be (sufficiently) tempted to buy a new car.

Ultimately there is no other solution than cutting and soldering that enables all the features we want. We'll try to make the process as painless as possible with a proper IDC splice eventually.

Lothsahn
Posts: 613
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2018 4:35 pm
Delivery Date: 04 Jan 2018
Leaf Number: 007797

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:01 am

mux wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 7:52 am
MikeD wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 3:25 am
mux: Does "some soldering work on the wiring" on the 2011 Leaf involve only wiring under/behind the dashboard? And is there any reason (after your device is sufficiently evolved/debugged, perhaps) not to have it installed in advance, so that the pack swap is the only step left (when a 40 kWh pack eventually becomes available)?
Yeah - we're currently choosing to do the soldering near the VCM. The main issue keeping us from having a completely plug&play solution for the gen1 Leaf is the lack of connectorization and the impossible to procure connectors on both the battery pack and VCM itself. So the only way to interrupt the CAN bus is to literally cut it in half and solder our own connector onto there. Furthermore, the only place where a connectorized solution *could* sit is directly onto the battery connector, which is outside the car making firmware updates via, say, a USB cable challenging.

We're not just going for trivial stuff like swapping batteries. We want to keep updating and upgrading the cars. The Leaf is going to get 70kW+ DC fast charging, gen1 is going to get B mode, etc. etc. You can't sit still in an environment of ever more competitive and interesting new cars. We don't want anybody to be (sufficiently) tempted to buy a new car.

Ultimately there is no other solution than cutting and soldering that enables all the features we want. We'll try to make the process as painless as possible with a proper IDC splice eventually.
Mux,

Could you 3d print the necessary connectors?
2011 Silver SV, purchased 2018, lives in Missouri (previously in CA)
LeafSpy Pro + BAFX Products OBDII dongle
Battery swap 2019/04/24 (87% SOH, 12 bar)

MikeD
Posts: 701
Joined: Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:14 am
Delivery Date: 12 May 2011
Leaf Number: 592

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:18 am

mux: I don't see soldering wires as much of an issue for me, if it's just identifying a number of colored wires using sufficiently clear instructions. I do have a concern if Nissan dealerships would refuse making any repairs on such modified Leafs on parts that most people and/or repair shops don't have the tools/skills for (like heating/AC, master cylinder perhaps, etc). I guess we soon learn if that is issue (if it's not yet known). Anyway it might be well to stockpile a few relatively inexpensive (currently available either new/used) essential spare parts that are known to cause trouble eventually (but this may be a very small list for the 2011).

mux
Posts: 265
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2018 3:52 am
Delivery Date: 13 Oct 2011
Leaf Number: 6177

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:39 am

Lothsahn wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:01 am
Mux,

Could you 3d print the necessary connectors?
Wouldn't solve the problem - there are no connectors to 3D print. It's a straight wire from VCM E61 to battery B24. Putting the board in between the VCM and the wiring harness will mess with other devices on the EV-CAN bus, putting it into B24 would place it physically outside with all the issues that causes.

@MikeD: So we've been doing conversions for a year now, talking to a bunch of people and having cars serviced, repairs done, etc.

Nobody cares. Nobody even notices. Not even the high voltage splice has been noticed on earth bonding plate replacements, and that's a massive big 3D printed shell with orange tape and warning labels sitting within centimeters of their face at that point. They didn't even care with an MOT checkup that I had fatal battery DTCs showing up (I *just* did my battery swap at that point and had some serious bugs). Not to say they weren't doing their job, on the contrary - all they care about is safety. If it's all done in a safe and responsible manner, you can mod you car to hell and they'll happily take your money to work on it. That's been our experience so far.

And from the insurer's side: they don't understand anything we do so they're fine with it so far. It's probably going to take one big widely publicized fuckup for anything to happen in this space. Once that happens, we'll be at the forefront of tackling whatever regulations and standards will be thrown into the fold to symbolically do something about it.

knightmb
Posts: 466
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 7:41 pm
Delivery Date: 15 Sep 2013
Leaf Number: 414897
Location: Franklin, TN

Re: Battery Upgrades are very possible

Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:53 am

mux wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 2:00 am
There is barely any labor involved in swapping the battery so I don't imagine that is going to be a big concern. Any car workshop will do that in an hour. If you use my mod, the 2011 does need some soldering work on the wiring which likely is the most time consuming part.
Is that specifically for the 2011 or all Gen1 (2011-2013? ) 2014? Not sure which is which generation.
2013 Leaf SV

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