Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Tweaking the ECU

Had to get the scope out to see what kind of signal was coming from the alternator W terminal, its a variable frequency as I originally expected, however, when I stuck my multimeter on it on the frequency setting, I was getting a very odd reading which lead me on a bit of a wild goose chase.. sorted with the scope!

James starts the engine

James: "Can I start the engine today?"

Matt: "Sure!.. I guess you know what your doing.."

24V Perkins Conversion

Still trying to track down all the parts I require to convert the Perkins engine to 24V. So far I think I have found 24V glow plugs, and apparently there is a 24V starter that will fit the engine, however, it costs £360 and Perkins won't give me the part number so I can't look for an equivalent.. thanks Perkins!

I have yet to find a 24V ESOS as pictured below, however, I could run this from a 12V regulator if need be.
Perkins 404D-22T 12V ESOS

Tuesday, 29 June 2010


The Engine runs for the first time!

Monday, 28 June 2010

Engine Commissioning

Time to get the engine ready to run, picked up engine oil, coolant and fuel hose from Hallfords. Got the fuel tank rigged up and chucked in a litre of diesel. Priming the diesel was pretty easy, there was a hand primmer in the fuel line which made things pretty easy.

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Engine Control Unit (ECU)

Had a busy couple of weeks chasing up parts, ordering parts, sorting out the our hydraulic tank which needs to go back and get all of the problems fixed!! On top of that I have designed and built the ECU. I was going to make a simple control unit using relays and a delay timer for the engine control, but decided I would end up wanting more features, and greater control. So I ended up with a PIC micro control system, the PIC monitors the oil pressure, temperature switch and alternator outputs, this way I can control the engine start sequence including heaters etc. I added an RS232 port to the ECU, and a CAN port for future upgrades, the unit works well on the bench, will try it on the engine soon!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Chassis layout

James (One of our student helpers) sits in place on the chassis, with engine and oil cooler in approximate locations

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

We have an Engine!

Our Perkins 404D-22T engine has arrived.. I have better get on with designing the ECU so we can fire it up and test it. I also have to source 24V heaters, stop solenoid and get the starter rewound for 24V. II will test it first at 12V before making any alterations.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

We have a Pump!

Our variable displacement pump arrived today, its a big beast and judging by the sticker is usually found on a JCB.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Robot Bling

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Painted Legs

Our steel legs arrived today fresh from the powder coaters.. I'm sure we ordered a satin finish.. I can see my reflection in these! Its just one thing after another.