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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Our eGator (#2) started acting up last night - when pressing the throttle after stopping, there are 3 clicks and then nothing. If I press the pedal a few more times, the same thing happens and then eventually it might move on one of the next presses.

The Curtis 1264-5403 controller flashes the 5,3 diagnostic code. According to the Deere technical manual (TM1766), this is indicates that the Motor Relay contacts Did Not Close. So, I guess I'll start with the Motor Relay Test procedure (page 6-73) in the manual and see what is found. Maybe the 3-clicks is part of a retry procedure from the Motor Controller logic if the first application of power to the relay coil does not result in Battery voltage switching through to the controller?

Just wondering if there is any BTDT experience that has also seen this relay fail with the "3-clicks, no-go" behavior?

There are about 1950 hours on this machine from MY2000. We've had it for about 2 months and are enjoying it so far. eGator #1 is still awaiting new batteries, tires and seats before going back on the road/lawn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
JohnN, thanks for posting the link to the manual. I had found it before from other sources online, too. It has a pretty detailed troubleshooting procedure, I just haven't had time to step through it, yet, as I've had other projects around the house I have needed to finish, first. I should get to it this Spring.

As for your Lithium battery project, please start a "build thread" and post your progress - this is something I am interested in eventually for the e-Gator!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I had a little time over the holiday to look into the e-Gator some more (other house projects have had priority). I did fix another issue - the B+ connection and charging connection to the positive battery terminal on the first/lead battery had corroded and cracked.. I repaired that and also made sure that the battery water levels were topped off (none of the cells were dry when I checked, either).

So, I have 2 odd behaviors now: the first is that the charger does not seem to turn off when connected, and then there is still the 3-clicks-but-no-go issue. I left the charger connected overnight and it said it was charging with about 9-10amps. It seemed about the same in the morning, maybe a little less. Across all eight batteries the packs measured 51.2V (and they had been at 48.7), so they did take some charge overnight.

Replacing the batteries is one thought I have, but I don't want to plunge into that until I'm sure there is nothing else wrong causing the 3-clicks behavior.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I stepped through the diagnostic procedures over the weekend, and on step 11 of the Forward & Throttle Circuit Diagnosis procedure, I found my error (this is from the FSM, page 6-48): with the throttle pressed (rear wheels in the air), I did not get a voltage reading when the relay clicked. So, this leads to a conclusion of an issue in the motor controller and to replace the motor controller. Fortunately, I had eGator1 sitting there with another controller, so I swapped it in and everything worked fine. I drove about 6 miles with it yesterday before bringing it in for a charge overnight.

Now to get the motor controller repaired...
 

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Nice work
 
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Great news
 

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Hello - I am new to the Gator forum. I have a 2008 eGator that is doing the three clicks no-go thing as well, but intermittently - Very frustrating to say the least! I used the technical manual and believe that the motor controller is at fault here, but am not 100% sure! The JD dealer wants $3,500 for a new motor controller, so I am looking at either a refurbished one or possibly changing brands.

Does anyone have a reliable source for refurbished or gently used motor controllers -or- had any luck installing another brand like Alltrax, etc...

Alltrax makes a direct replacement for the same motor controller that was used in both the EZgo and Club Car but to no surprise - no mention of the egator.

https://alltraxinc.com/curtis-126412661268-xct-replacement/

Thanks
Dale
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hi Dale,

I was wondering about other controllers, too, but haven't found any alternate controllers used on the eGators, either. I have seen an eGator that was converted to Lithium-ion batteries by using part of a Nissan Leaf battery pack - that seems like a very useful upgrade...but it also still used the OEM controller (and an additional battery controller).

For my bad motor controller, walking through the steps in the service manual narrowed it down to an issue with the power supply for the throttle potentiometer (on connector J1, pin 13 - I get no 5V output when applying throttle). I have not been able to find a service manual for the controller (just a user manual, no schematics/layout/parts list). If I could find a schematic/layout, I could probably repair it myself.

In the end, I will be sending the controller in to FSIP for repair (it will be about $400) https://shop.fsip.biz/en/product/controllers-curtis/rr-curtis-48v-400a-0-5k-sx-controller--RP77-1264-5403 . I did first try sending it in to Industrial Electronics Repair in Winston-Salem, NC, as they offered a free repair estimate and sounded like they would be more reasonable. Their cost estimate came back as $750 for the repair, with no additional detail on what exactly was wrong with the controller and no comment on my troubleshooting that seemed to narrow it to the throttle pot. power supply. I had them return my controller, and I was only out the shipping costs. They did say that part of their repair service is to replace all electrolytic capacitors, which dry out over time. I have fixed a number of power supplies in LCD computer monitors just by replacing the 'lytics, so that makes sense as a preventative repair, as well.

As repairing my controller is part of getting my second eGator up and running, I'm not in a hurry. I will probably send that in later in the Fall or over the Winter. Good luck with yours!
 

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Sounds like I need a gator2 to rob parts off of until I get this one fixed. LOL

Interesting about the capacitors... do you think FSIP will replace them as well?

I sent an email to AllTrax asking if they have a replacement but have not heard from them yet. I suspect that they do not check their general delivery email box and I will follow up with them by phone next week. I found FSIP as well and will use them if i don't get a favorable response from AllTrax.

The cart worked fine yesterday but stopped working after an hour of hard use hauling construction debris. I think it might be a heat related issue and the guilty component might not rear its ugly head on a test bench at a re-builder and could be overlooked.

I am going to read through the manual and see if there is a test for the accelerator peddle as it might be sending an intermittent signal to the motor controller?

Dale
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm just following up... I have been using eGator 2 with the motor controller for eGator 1 without any further issues. I still haven't sent eGator 2's original controller out for repair at FSIP, but I should get to that this Spring.

@dalet - how are things progressing with your eGator? Your description sounds like the way the original controller started failing on my eGator 2: it could work for a while, and then mid-job (usually somewhere out in the yard), it would go into the 3-clicks-no-go mode. It started happening more and more, until finally that was all it would do.

@JohnN - yeah, if we could get a schematic and PCB layout diagram for these we would be all set! We could narrow it down to the weak link that is the most likely to fail in these controllers.

I've now added eGator3 to the stable o_O This one is a rolling chassis only, though (no motor controller or plastic bodywork).
 

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I have been meaning to post my results for a while but got sidetracked! I ended up purchasing and installing an Alltrax XCT Motor Controller for around $500 shipped and the cart is running like a top! The part number on the box is XCT48500-G19 196671 and it came with a universal mounting bracket that utilizes the existing Curtis bolt holes, and a conversion cable from the JD plug to the motor controller for a plug n play install! The instructions that came with it had no mention of the eGator install, but after reversing the N1 and N2 cables (forward was reverse and reverse was forward) it was up and running. The state of charge meter has a faint glow to it when the key is off, but it hasn't cause any issues, and Alltrax has been very helpful troubleshooting this and determined that the problem is that the Yellow/Black wire at the meter is getting 5.4v and to install a diode on the wire!

Hope this helps you guys.

 

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Hello,

thanks for the interesting clues here. I tried to bring back an old eGator (2002) to life myself too. I went down pretty much every check from the book but with no special result. At some point the flash code indicated a relay problem. I replaced the relay, the speedometer and potentiometer. The trouble is that even though the pedal sends variable current to the controller, the wheels always turn to maximum speed. Has anyone experienced anything similar? The large plug was somewhat loose - which caused the whole car to stop sometimes. I put some extra copper in the female connecting wires to prevent that, but the speed problem stays, ...so I tend to think I d have to get a new controller unfortunately

Dale, your Alltrax alternative is definitely interesting ... however, I d be curious to know why you chose the 500 and not the 400 Amp device in that case. Their site XCT Replacement Controller for the CURTIS 1264, 1266 and 1268 – ALLTRAX with specific Curtis adapters shows apart from an extra fan, that prices have gone up quite a bit now though, so I might turn towards the R&R solution). Would be grateful for any other idea also.

Christophe
 

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Hello,

thanks for the interesting clues here. I tried to bring back an old eGator (2002) to life myself too. I went down pretty much every check from the book but with no special result. At some point the flash code indicated a relay problem. I replaced the relay, the speedometer and potentiometer. The trouble is that even though the pedal sends variable current to the controller, the wheels always turn to maximum speed. Has anyone experienced anything similar? The large plug was somewhat loose - which caused the whole car to stop sometimes. I put some extra copper in the female connecting wires to prevent that, but the speed problem stays, ...so I tend to think I d have to get a new controller unfortunately

Dale, your Alltrax alternative is definitely interesting ... however, I d be curious to know why you chose the 500 and not the 400 Amp device in that case. Their site XCT Replacement Controller for the CURTIS 1264, 1266 and 1268 – ALLTRAX with specific Curtis adapters shows apart from an extra fan, that prices have gone up quite a bit now though, so I might turn towards the R&R solution). Would be grateful for any other idea also.

Christophe
RE: 500 vs 400 - If I remember correctly... Alltrax sent me to a dealer who had developed the (JD - XCT) conversion cable and they promoted the 500 Amp? I am guessing because bigger is better, and even more so, if it is cooled by a fan? You should contact Alltrax and see if the Curtis 1264 link you found includes the JD conversion cable.

Good luck!
 

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RE: 500 vs 400 - If I remember correctly... Alltrax sent me to a dealer who had developed the (JD - XCT) conversion cable and they promoted the 500 Amp? I am guessing because bigger is better, and even more so, if it is cooled by a fan? You should contact Alltrax and see if the Curtis 1264 link you found includes the JD conversion cable.

Good luck!
Thanks for the quick interesting response, Dale.

Well, the conversion cable does seem part of the deal though the price is now around 700-800, indeed, and still no mention of the John Deere Gator. So I'm waging the alternative of letting refurbishing the old Curtis controller by some expert though there seem to be only few golf cart brands that used the 1268 5403. The shipping price supplement to France is balanced off by the tax exemption for importing repaired goods.

Lots of Curtis controllers shipping from China for even cheaper of course like from NOCO 1268-5403 | CURTIS 36-48V / 400A DC SepEx Motor Controller ... and some interesting explanations about build differences. How that's possible i don't know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
@dalet : I was re-reading one of your earlier reponses in this thread, and see that a symptom you had matches what I am seeing on eGator1, now that I have that up and running...
<snip> The state of charge meter has a faint glow to it when the key is off, but it hasn't cause any issues, and Alltrax has been very helpful troubleshooting this and determined that the problem is that the Yellow/Black wire at the meter is getting 5.4v and to install a diode on the wire! <snip>
Do you have a diagram of how you installed the diode (which direction) on the line? I have this same faint glow with eGator1 (even with the stock Curtis controller), but I did not have it on eGator2. The two hour meters are slightly different, though they are both Curtis models.

@christophe , which large connector did you mean in your post (the connector that was loose)? Are you referring to the large white connector on the Curtis controller?
 

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@khnitz
Yes that's right. That plug mounted in the controller had some connections not completely tight. After adding some copper wires into the receiving part the circuit didn't cut anymore...
 

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Thanks for the quick interesting response, Dale.

Well, the conversion cable does seem part of the deal though the price is now around 700-800, indeed, and still no mention of the John Deere Gator. So I'm waging the alternative of letting refurbishing the old Curtis controller by some expert though there seem to be only few golf cart brands that used the 1268 5403. The shipping price supplement to France is balanced off by the tax exemption for importing repaired goods.

Lots of Curtis controllers shipping from China for even cheaper of course like from NOCO 1268-5403 | CURTIS 36-48V / 400A DC SepEx Motor Controller ... and some interesting explanations about build differences. How that's possible i don't know.
Are the Curtis units coming from China new or refurbished? If refurbished I would stay away from fifteen year old refurbished units and go with the 400 Amp Alltrax controller (with JD cable of course).
 
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