I saw that there is a go kart forum, but from what I saw, none of them were street legal, so I think this is a more appropriate place for this thread. I live in Fort Worth, TX about 5 miles each way from where I work. The fastest speed limit on the roads I take is 40 mph. I would love to buy or make an electric vehicle for my commute. The new electric scooters/motorcycles looked pretty good, but I saw a post saying it overheated when it was under 80 deg F outside. (What would it do when it is over 100 deg F here?) Also, I'm not too fond of the idea of spending that kind of money on something I haven't seen or test driven from a company I know very little about. I'm not currently a motorcycle rider, so I'm not sure about safety. I would get an electric bicycle, but there are no bike lanes and lots of traffic. Hmm, maybe that's why we frequently have air pollution watches here (some people need to wake up). All the electric vehicles I have seen for sale are really overkill for my commute and thus more money than I want to spend.
So, I started thinking about making my own go kart or dune buggy electric vehicle. Does anyone have any idea what would be required to get it street legal in Texas?
I started pricing out things I think I would need (suggestions are welcome here):
go kart kit $600 with shipping; http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/product_200356855_200356855
Motor—8 hp cont, 15 peak, $434 + ? shipping; http://www.cloudelectric.com/product_p/mo-me-0708.htm
200 amp controller with reverse and regen (80 amp cont.); $295 + ? shipping; http://www.cloudelectric.com/product_p/co-pm48201.htm
pedal throttle; $109.95 + ? shipping; http://www.cloudelectric.com/product_p/th-kp-0-5k.htm
4x 85 AH Trojan batteries 24TMX-12V; $488 + ? shipping; http://stores.energywisesolutions.net/-strse-1341/24TMX-12V-Deep-Cycle/Detail.bok
Throwing in about $150 for wiring, lights etc, gives me a total cost of about $2,100, maybe $2,500 with the shipping and tax.
Total weight should be about 670 lbs including me. (I'm only about 170 lbs of it.)
As you can see, I found a lot of things at cloudelectric. Are they a good company?
Any advice on the whole thing would be greatly appreciated. I'm an engineer, so amps, volts, rpm, etc. are easy for me to understand (at least in theory--no practice with EV's yet). My Dad will help on the construction. He has a shop with a welder and other equipment. I think we would make a good team on this project, and going 40-45 mph max for 10 miles round trip doesn't seem like a tall order. I eagerly await your comments, good and bad.