We are excited to announce the AutoBlock Amp just went through a major overhaul, and will start shipping in about a week.
The amp block still does everything it used to do, but some things it does even better. These new tweaks and additions are listed below. We designed the AutoBlock AMP to provide many options for you to communicate with your system. Use a sealed USB cable for a digital link to some sort of USB host, or display instantaneous current flow on a repurposed tachometer (we like to call it a "Tach-Ammeter") and estimated state of charge with virtually any fuel gauge. You can program the specifics of these outputs through a one-time software setup.
- NEW WIRING CONNECTOR- an Automotive connector (IP67) for easy wiring, and durability
- SEALED - with epoxy to make it even more durable and water tight
- UPDATED USB - from USB to USB mini and now sealed with housing
- NEW COLOR - It’s now a darker green
- NEW GUARANTEE - We fully believe in its durability now, if something goes wrong short of you cutting it in half we will exchange it for a new one
- BETTER SOFTWARE - We have made a lot of improvements to our software. Cross platform, more stable, and faster.
The core product still does what it’s supposed to such as:
- MEASURE - current flow up to 1000 AMPS in BOTH DIRECTIONS
- OUTPUT - via USB mini, your fuel gauge, or tachAmmeter (repurposed tachometer)
- HIGH RESOLUTION and FAST – less than ¼ of an amp at 60 times a second
- Hall-effect sensor is galvonically ISOLATED from the high voltage system
The Process so Far
So why all the changes? A couple years ago, we started this project and eventually had something to test. We gave out a few beta units to contemporaries/friends/acquaintances for feedback. All of these changes are a direct result of this feedback, and most specifically, feedback from Jack Richard at EVTV. Jack was kind enough to review a few early units and give us feedback via his weekly show. We visited his shop, helped him through some issues (most of them having something to do with EVs) and listened to his thoughts on the products. Here are links to those review videos:
A great example of a change resulting from this feedback is the electrical connections. Originally, we had several screw-terminals on the base of the unit. Screw terminals are fine, but not in an exposed automotive environment. We noticed our testers tended to mount the ABamp outside of any sealed enclosure, where screw terminals would eventually fail. To combat this, we redesigned the device to incorporate a sealed, automotive-grade connection. We used these same requirements for the USB port. All connections are now rated IP67. More information on these ratings are found here:
Another major improvement is the set-up software. Jack said our software needed work, and he was right. It is much improved from before, still open source and cross-platform, easier to use, more robust. As with any software project, they really never end. We will continue to improve, iterate and release software as we receive feedback from customers.
We strive to continually improve our creations. To this end, we will continue testing our products to ensure every weakness is identified and delt with. As part of this process, we are working with the Zero South team to help with their projects and send 4 of our AutoBlock AMPs to the south pole! We will have more information on this project in a forthcoming blog post.