Welcome to my mid-life crisis. I hope it turns out to be a productive one.
Back in 2006 a co-worker of mine watched "Who Killed the Electric Car" and started talking up the concept of all-electric cars during lunchtimes. I vaguely remembered the EV1, but since I live far away from CA and AZ it didn't really enter my consciousness. But talking about it got several of us excited, and we thought we should start a company converting cars to electric and save the world! So I bought a book (Bob Brant's "Build Your Own Electric Vehicle") and started doing research. It seemed like a modestly-performing commuter car was technically and (almost) financially feasible. The trick would be convincing people that it's ok to deal with flooded Pb-Acid batteries and live with a constricted daily driving range for the privilege of bypassing gas stations for the rest of eternity. (Because who in the world can afford lithium batteries?) Fortunately one of us (not me) has a little business sense and convinced us that there was no money in it, so it would be at best an altruistic adventure. Ah well. Ok, scratch the "saving the world" part. But still...
Ever since then, I've had this notion in the back of my mind that even if it doesn't make business sense it would still be fun to convert a car. The company I work for has rolled out a "green initiative" and is offering an incentive for its employees to buy hybrid vehicles (via payroll rebate), so I asked if they would apply it to an all-electric conversion. They said yes, and also offered to allow me to charge at work. Beauty! So I decided to give it a go.
There are some very excellent blogs and websites chronicling the conversion of various cars. This will not be one of those. But by writing this I'll at least be recording my efforts to make the next conversion easier! (Just don't tell my wife there might be another!)