# Golfcart questions - electrical

I have a golfcart that has a 36 volt system.

Question 1: If I want to connect a 12 volt radio to the system, do I need to install a 12 volt regulator?

I’m pretty sure I do because even if I connect the radio across only 12 volts of batteries (2 six volt batt’s), when the motor is on (the cart is running), this completes the circuit and the radio will get at least 24 volts. Am I correct in assuming this?

Question 2: I saw on a show that there is a way to tweak (get more speed/power) an electric motor. How is this done, and is this something I should or shouldn’t do?

Question 3: In electronics class I learned a general rule of thumb that says to engineer things to 1 1/2 times normal operating voltage (as a safety margin). So, assuming this was done when my electric motor was constructed, can I safely run 54 volts in my system? Maybe that’s being greedy, but how about another 6 (so only 42 volts)?

Question 4: D.C. electric motors, I have recently learned, use electrically generated magnets for the stator and commutator. Why? Isn’t it more efficient (less energy drain on the battery) to use fixed magnets for the stator?

I think that’s all the questions I have. Thanks for any help on any of the above.

Robert

Why? There’s better platforms for building a hotrod

Again, why? Upping the potential of the circuit will only put additional stress on the components, with no tangible gain.

Electromagnets are cheaper, probably lighter, and have the additional benefit of on/off capability (not sure if that’s relevant in this case).

From your description, I’m guessing the cart runs on a bank of six 6 V batteries wired in series? If this is the case, then connecting your radio’s power wires across two batteries in series as you suggest will work just fine. Regardless of the current being drawn by the motor, the radio will still only have a maximum of 12 V supplied to it. I say maximum because, depending on the load of the motor and the internal resistance of the batteries, there may be a fairly significant voltage drop such that the radio may get somewhat less than 12 V. It would be best to connect the radio’s negative (black) wire to the same terminal the motor’s negative cable is connected to, and connect the radio’s positive (red) lead to the (+) terminal of the second battery in the chain. This way, the radio’s ground is the same as the cart electrical system, and the possibility of an unintentional short will be minimized.

If you have access to a voltmeter check the voltage across a single battery of the battery array. If you don’t have a voltmeter look to see how many batteries in the cart. If there are three then each is 12 v. and you can drill a hole in the positive terminal of the battery that has its negative terminal as the system ground. Use a sheet metal screw slightly larger than the drilled hole connect a black #14 stranded wire to that terminal. Route the wire plus another wire (white) from the system ground to the radio location.

If there are 6 batteries then you need to use the one that has its negative as the sytem ground plus the next bettery in the series. Drill the positive terminal of the second one and proceed as above.