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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
As a former Nissan Leaf owner that was used to the modified L1/L2 through http://evseupgrade.com/, I wanted that same functionality from my 2013 Volt portable charger that comes with the car and fits neatly under the rear trunk cover. So with help and guidance from GlennD (mynissanleaf forum member), I gutted the stock '13 Volt charger and replaced the clipper creek board with an Open Evse Board ( http://code.google.com/p/open-evse/) , power supply, new 240V relay and new fuses. I reused the GFCI coil and J1772 connector and cable. I mounted all these components on a square plastic sheet that fit neatly within the charger enclosure. It looks OEM. It was tested on 120V tonight and worked fine charging my Volt. I plan to test it on 240V in the next few days once I install a male L6-20 plug on it to use with various 240V connectors using the evseupgrade approach. Once I finish with the L6-20 plug and testing on 240V, I will post pictures. Many thanks to GlennD for the guidance and for wiring everything together and programming the chip. Total parts were about $100.

Pictures with components mounted and another connected and plugged into 120V.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/8243569687/in/photostream

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/8244637630/in/photostream
 

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Sounds awesome! Yes pics and parts list please. Step by step would be fantastic if possible. I think many would be interested for a future project.
 

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I knew it was only a matter of time before somebody did this. I was hoping for a simple mod, but if gutting and replacing the whole board is only $100 it's going to be a runaway success. Sounds like a business opportunity for someone who would like to offer the EVSEUpgrade service for Voltecs.
 

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Agreed - I'll certainly be watching this, and diving in to my own charger soon. This is Exactly (well, close enough)what I've been looking for..
Thanks!
 

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Sounds awesome! Yes pics and parts list please. Step by step would be fantastic if possible. I think many would be interested for a future project.
Not me, LOL. Wouldn't there be possible warranty issues with something like this? I wouldn't plug something as complex as a Volt into a home modified charger period.
 

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If there was a way to allow the device to have two 120 plugs that provide the required 240 that can be used either with a single plug for a regular 120v use or the dual plug for 240v requirement. Most people will not have access to a 240v outlet when out and about and for home charging most people have L2 chargers already.
Most outlets have two receptacles so any outlet can be used for L2 charging.
 

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I'm glad that you know what you are doing. I would probably burn my house and car to the ground. Wouldn't the press have fun with that!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If there was a way to allow the device to have two 120 plugs that provide the required 240 that can be used either with a single plug for a regular 120v use or the dual plug for 240v requirement. Most people will not have access to a 240v outlet when out and about and for home charging most people have L2 chargers already.
Most outlets have two receptacles so any outlet can be used for L2 charging.
This is possible using a quick 220 adapter, but the two 120V outlets need to be on opposite phases, which is typically not the case if they are next to each other. You can buy these adapters from RV supply places or build a fancier one using these instructions: http://www.mynissanleaf.com/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=4774
 

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In the old days, people would build their own radios, amps, etc. Today, it's L2 charge stations! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
In the old days, people would build their own radios, amps, etc. Today, it's L2 charge stations! :)
I've met several people that used to build/operate radios that are now building L2 EVSEs. Looks like a similar if not identical skill set. As far as I go, this is all new for me. I knew what I wanted the final product to do , did the hardware fitting/assembly and was fortunate to have someone experienced help me with the wiring and programming of the chip.
 

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Any word on how your upgrade is working on the 240v side? I am really interested in this project and have been checking out Open Evse a lot lately.
 

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Just had a chance to test the evse on 240V. Works fine.
So this is very cool, AdrianX. You have a portable EVSE that can drink 120v or 240v. How is that done? a switch and a plug adapter of some sort?

Oh I see you said "I install a male L6-20 plug". Pics?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Here are some pictures. http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/
The EVSE has a male L6-20 plug installed on it. It can plug directly into an L6-20 outlet. Ot it can plug into one of several adapters that have a female L6-20 on one end and various other 240V or 120V male plugs on the other end. On the L6-20, two legs are hot and one is ground. When used with the 240V adapters, the EVSE senses 240V input and operates at 15A. When used with the 120V adapters it only receives one hot leg, so it runs at 120V 8 or 12A (depending on driver input prior to shutting Volt off). It automatically runs on either 120V or 240V depending on what it is plugged into.
The pics include a weather proof sleeve which I plan to add to all my adapters.
I also posted pics of my "quick 240V" adapter. It works by joining two opposite phase 120V legs into a L6-20 outlet. This is useful when a 240V source is not available. Typicaly I plug one leg into the closest 120V outlet and then use an extension cord to another 120V outlet that is on an opposite phase and breaker. I know I've got two 120V sources with different phases merged to 240 when my 240V light on the side of the box lights up.
All this stuff is left over from my Leaf, when I wanted to make sure I could plug into any outlet in the wild.
 

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This is a cool project. I don't need to dive in yet myself except:

I have the "blinking red ground fault problem" when I charge at work until I made the "fake ground adapter" that solved the problem and allows 12 amp charging. There is still a slight safety concern and I wonder if the EVSE board would solve this. That is, does it look for ground faults and other problems? At least with the source code to EVSE I could modify it to be less sensitive or even restart itself after some time period.

Also, if anyone is around the Boston/Nashua area and would like some help to modify THEIR Voltec I am offering.

jv
 

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Check out http://code.google.com/p/open-evse/ . There are several ways to do this. there are pics and parts list and links to order. Just poke around the entire site, there's lots of info.
Does this still cost $100 in parts including the LCD display and button selector? Where is the parts list and where do you buy all the components required?

Is the OEM "120V" Voltec charge cord that comes with the VOLT rated for a full 16A? I thought the conductors were inadequate for that much current and that is why it is limited to 12A by GM.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Does this still cost $100 in parts including the LCD display and button selector? Where is the parts list and where do you buy all the components required?

Is the OEM "120V" Voltec charge cord that comes with the VOLT rated for a full 16A? I thought the conductors were inadequate for that much current and that is why it is limited to 12A by GM.
The 2013 oem EVSE has 14 gauge conductors. Given a max of 15A rating for a three conductor 14 gauge bundle, I limited my open evse to 15A. Check out the initial description (first post) and the pictures. I did not use an LCD display or a button selector. I instead used a multi color LED and the evse now auto selects L1 or L2 based on what it is plugged into. You can still choose 8 or 12 A in the car, with the oem default of 8 for 120V charging.
As far as the parts list, I bought a pre-built control board from barbouri on the mynissanleaf forum for $80 including shipping. I added a power supply for ~$20, and a relay for $13.97. Adding the LED, the total is closer to $120.
Here's a link for the individual parts list since I think I have a V2 on the openevse site: http://code.google.com/p/open-evse/wiki/OpenEVSEv2partslist
If you build the whole thing (reusing the case and J1772 connector and cable) yourself without a display, I think it will cost less than $100. I paid $80 with shipping for the control board, but the parts add up to $45 per the link. The amount of time saved was worth the difference for me.
 
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