Who We Are

In our Metalshop classes, we build race cars to drive in the Electrathon America Racing Series!!  How cool is that?!?

Each student team builds a car from the ground up to travel as far as possible in one hour on only 72 lbs. of lead acid batteries. We race against lots of other students and adults in towns and on race tracks all across this country on the weekends from March to July. We learn a lot and have tons of fun! This website documents our building process. Please leave comments and/or questions!

Please scroll down to see our recent progress.

Crazy ECar Team

2014  ECar Team


Prototype Posts

2010-2011 CHS Electrathon Team

2013 ECar Teams

2012-2013 ECar Teams

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Rear-fork and Motor placement on the same piece of metal

In the picture below you may notice that that rear-fork is placed downwards. This is helpful because when you need to move the placement of the wheel all you have to do is just put the wheel in the slot. The way to adjust it would be by moving the motor along the slots in the bar.

The picture below this happens to be where the motor placement is adjustable. Now this could benefit someone really well because when moving the motor you don’t have to realign the wheel with the motor all you have to do is align the motor. The people who came up with this design (Thurston) are very clever. They transferred two pieces into one pice of metal reducing the amount of welds used.

Rollbar Repair

Rollbar repair 2 Rollber repair 1During the race at Lacey, our car #169 sped into a turn, hit a barrier, crashed and rolled over. The accident caused the roll bar to bend out of place. Luckily our driver was not hurt because the roll bar did what it should do, protect the drivers head. I was given the task of repairing the bar. What I did was cut off the right roll bar support and take a hammer to the bar until it was back in line with the rest of the bar. Then I tacked the support bar back to the roll bar. It was easy to do and it is important to do that because if you don’t the bar might not be strong enough the next time it happens. One of my team members will now weld out the joint.

Attaching the nose cover

I made the nose cover, with the help of my friend Jake. To start, Jake cut out the cover with a box cutter to the right shape. Next we started by tapping the cover to the top of an arched piece of metal and worked are way down the metal at the bottom of the car, tapping a little at a time. The idea is to rap the cover under and up between the wood and the metal of the nose, to tape it to the inside of the cover. After its secure, you are ready to shrink wrap. photo

Shrinked Wrap Boat Tail

In the photo bellow my partner and I (Erik Anderson) have just finished the boat tail for car #242. As you can see in both pictures we had some difficulty like the one bellow we had to make a patch because we overheated it. You can see the patch just bearly I’m the top right corner of the tail.

In the photo below there is the other side of the car in which we also had to patch up towards the front where the red meets on the numbers. All in all the boat tail makes it so when the car goes through the air, it pushes the air apart and usually the air circles around back, but with the boat tail it stops most of the air from circling around back.

Battery Wattage Testing

Battery test 1 Battery test 2Because our team wants more energy in the batteries during the race, Coulter has put together a system that will help in finding the perfect batteries. The system is very similar to the one on the cars, but it has some different features. One of them is there is no motor, instead there is a wire system called a heater coil. It shows the wattage being used in heat. Another thing that is in the system is a shunt. This directs the flow of electricity to the wattage meter which shows how much wattage is being used. This system is done but it has a problem that we can’t fix yet.

Shoulder harenesses

For this post, I worked on making the center, sides, and shoulder harnesses for the car(I’m going to explain how to make the shoulder harnesses only, as it will take too long to explain them all, I will explain the rest in the next post). First, take either the left or right shoulder strap, and make that the buckle is facing upward. Second, take the first piece of metal shown in the picture and take the strap up the first slit and down the other slit. Third, take the piece of metal that will attach to the car and bring the strap up and into that slit. Bring the strap all the way around and back to the flat slit metal and repeat the first step. Pull it tight and adjust it if needed. Repeat these steps with the other side and your done. This is really hard to explain by typing but I can easily show it.

 Read more... (38 secs reading time)

Wheel Sprocket

Sprocket 1 Sprocket 2The wheel sprocket is very important to the car. It connects the chain from the motor to the back wheel to transmit power into motion. The sprocket first needs 5 holes drilled into it for the screws that attach it to the wheel can be attached. However, before the screws can be put in the holes the holes have to be taped so that the screws will stay put. Once these are done the sprocket is ready to go.

Recent Race

Recently we had a race on Saturday April 12, 2014. I raced and did 37 laps as a result I placed 17th out of 29th. It was a fun experience and I drove about 19.2 miles on a 12 volt battery within an hour. It might not seem like much to you, but to me it is.

In the photo below you see two cars I drove number 242. My friend drove number 169. My friend placed 28th out of 29th. His car did have a lot of problems which the CHS electric car team is planning on fixing for the next race. Also I would like to say thanks to all those viewers out there. Also a great thanks to the pit crew without them number 169 would’ve never been able to finish the race.

Primary Nose Supports

 The nose supports are flat pieces of metal I made to support are car. To start, you need to find some sheet metal, cut out 4 pieces, about and inch in length, and about 3/4″ wide or more(doesn’t really matter). Next, you place the supports under the metal for the nose and clamp one to the side and another to the other side; take the last two and put them near the end of the nose and clamp those on. After that, add for welds to each piece of metal to secure it. Once that’s done, add the floor and your done.

 Read more... (25 secs reading time)

Weight In the Car

In the photo below you see me drilling a hole into a 25 pound weight. This weight is located where it is because it is kind of like an extra seat. I have drilled this hole to 3/8″ diameter for the bolt and lock washer to fit on to keep it stable.

Finally figured out how to change the rotation of the picture. In the photo below I have successfuly placed the weight in the car and have attached it to the car. I am currently waiting for the next one to be placed but in order to do that I need another part finished so until two weeks see you guys later and have a great week.- Shawn Tardiff

Chain System Assembly Part 1

Tapchain link on drillThe chain is the part of the car that make our car go. Without it the energy from the motor can’t reach the wheel. The first thing that must be done is the sprocket which holds the chain must get 5 holes drilled into it and all must be taped so a bolt can fit into each one. Then another part goes in the middle of the sprocket and is screwed down. (I could not remember the name of this piece)








Back rest

I am working on the seat rest for the electric car. First what you have to do, is to cut out a piece of round stock(Needs to be at least 19 to 20 inches long, you will cut off leftover metal later). Next you have some one sit in the seat of the car and have them wait for you to check the right placement for where is should go(It needs to be somewhere on there back where its comfortable). Once this is done, clamp the metal to the car and make sure that its level with the ground. After that step is complete, tack weld the metal on both sides and use three welds to secure it on both sides. After that, you have completed the seat rest.  

 Read more... (32 secs reading time)

Nose and Car progress New and Improved

In the picture below you see me deburing the place where the nose will carefully be placed. I cut off some parts by using the reciprocating saw because there wasn’t enough room to get a hack saw in there. I have recently placed the nose in the formation and welded it on and it is all leveled out. I am again sorry for the picture turnning i am working on a way to fix it.
In the picture below is the CHS Electric car team. We are a team that is willing to do what we believe in. We are also a team that works good with each other. I am sitting in the car and the car is what we have gotten done on it so far and I think we will be ready by our first race. We might not do so good in it but at least we are trying to be as best as we can as a team.

 Read more... (39 secs reading time)

Number Plates

Number platesThe number plates on the electric car are a required thing to have because it tells the judges who’s car is who’s. Basically the number plates are the cars license plates. To make them our team used high impact resistant corrugated plastic. The plastic is cut into 2 pieces, one for each side of the car, with a box cutter. Then the numbers are simply colored on with a sharpie marker. The numbers must be more than 6 inches high so that judges can see them at a race. Making them is very easy to do.



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Final Nose Sketch.

In the photo below you see me drawing lines for the final sketch of the nose. The nose is a crucial part of the car. It stops some of the wind from hitting your ride and also reduces drag pressure. Sorry about the picture below this text it is tilted sideways. Electric car 2
In this photo below you can see all the tools I have used to make this final sketch. I have recently finished this sketch today (1/30/14) with less then five minutes less in class. These tools have been very difficult to use, before I used the big-square I used only a tape measure. Plus as a bonus you can also see my motivational portable speaker.
electric car 3

Steering system and tie rod

Hello engineers and interested people. I am Jacob and I’ve been working on building the main plate chasii for the steering system and tie rods.


These plates are welded together and drilled with holes for the Heinz joints. The one on the left is the placement for the tie rod the connects the handle to the tire and the bottom one is the main rod that attaches to both tires to make unison steering.


 Read more... (40 secs reading time)

Motor support

unnamed (1)

In the picture on the above is me readjusting the rear fork to be flush. I am doing this because there was a slight twist in the rear fork causing it to not be straight or flush with the frame. So with a wrench and a level i bent the rear fork back into its original shape and in place so the motor support bar and the motor will sit properly in place and properly aligned with the rear tire and car.

 Read more... (35 secs reading time)

Tie Rods

Tie Rod 1Tie rod 2As our car needs steering capabilities, we need a system to do that. We will use tie rods to do that. Coulter Roe is doing one of them. Tie rods are used to connect the wheels to the steering levers. Without them you can’t steer the car at all. The first thing to do is to put in 2 joints into the ending points of the car (top, left). The next thing to do is to cut out a 1/4″ diameter steel rod to 17.5″ in length (top right). After that the rod must have threads cut with a die to allow for nuts to be screwed on. The Tie rod is then finished and is ready to be assembled into the car.

Fire wall and kill switch

photo (1)
In the picture above I finished the firewall. I had to locate 1/16″ metal plank and cut it to 15″ by 7 1/2″. After that I found the 1/2″ by 1/2″ angle iron and cut it to 7″.

In the picture above I finished the inside switch casing. I used the iron netting and cut a shape arrow-dynamic to our car. I had to drill a hole in the metal that was about 3/4″ in diameter.

King pin completion and Front Tire System

 ‘Ello people of electric car designing, I’m Jacob Taylor and I’ve been working on completing the king pins and the front steering system.

IMG_20131218_150600_428This is embarrassing…I thought I had a newer picture of the king pin with the drilled holes and tapped side plates, but…just bare with me. The king pin is what the tires are mounted onto…it would be way better if I had the holes to show, but this is the best I got.

 Read more... (51 secs reading time)

Fantastic Work Part Guys!



Several guys came in over Christmas break to work on their electric race car. They got a bunch of stuff done and did very nice quality work including finishing up the king pins complete with axles, the firewall and battery brackets,  rear view mirror brackets and two roll bar braces. They also got the rear switch bracket, steering handles, upper steering braces, lattice for the side frames and floor supports And some other stuff I am sure to be forgetting.

Here are some Picts




Electric Systems Part II

 Electric car Electricity 2    Electric car Electricity 1A while ago Coulter Roe had finished the electric practice packet to learn how different types of electric systems work(see electric Systems post below). Now he has begun building the real electric systems for the car. The stuff used is completely different than in the electric practice packet he worked on, but the parts do the exact same thing as the parts in the circuits he built while learning electricity. The new item he is using is a control box which distributes the power to all the wires and components. He was able to get the motor going after fixing some wires that were in the wrong position on the connectors. One of them was one wire piece that was connected from the control box to the motor was separated by a washer. The wire has to touch the motor’s outlet. If it is separated by a washer or something else, than the circuit is not complete and the motor will not run. Now he will be getting ready to put the systems into the car. Without them the car will not move.

45 bend arms/upper steering plates and supports


‘Ello people of electric car designing, I’m Jacob Taylor and recently I’ve been working on attaching bends on the electric car so the top plates can be evenly spaced and parallel.

IMG_20131211_150653_605This picture is of the bends (parts hanging on the upper frame and firewall) and the supports(long, thin pieces of metal). The supports are there for structural integrity and also balance so the firewall isn’t easily knocked off. It’s simple and all that was needed was scrap pieces of axle.

 Read more... (51 secs reading time)

Electric Systems

Electric 2Electric 1The Electric systems for the car are one of the most important parts of the car. Without them the car won.t move. They help control voltage, wattage, amps being used to power the car. In the Electrathon races, they systems have to be powered by a 24 volt battery. At the time this was posted, Coulter Roe was given the task to make the systems, but he never had Robotics. So he went through a long packet of safety, and learning procedures to get him ready for making our cars electric systems. The two photos above show him making different circuits as practice to teach him how different circuits work.

 Read more... (26 secs reading time)

Steering lever arm

Electric car
In this photo above I recently drilled these holes and by my mistake I drilled them to small for the bolt to fit into. The bolt would not fit in the hole because my measurements were off by at least a sixty fourth. I was able to re correct my mistake and make it work.
Electric car 1
In this photo you see me holding up the steering lever arms. I have to use four flat washers and one locker washer. The system it’s self was a little hard to create because I couldn’t find the right size bar.

Rollbar attachment and Front Axle

‘Ello people of electric car designing, I’m Jacob Taylor and recently I’ve been working on attaching the rollbar to the Upper Frame, and helping a fellow colleague with their Front Axle.

photoThis is a photo of me making adjustments to the rollbar that me and another friend attached. I’m clearly dye grinding (without any air supply either…) some welds off after another colleague noticed something faulty about the rollbar’s fixture. I fixed it and now, apparently, I’m the go to guy for repairs; I’ll take that with pride and honor, but things would be easier if they were done right the first time…oh well, we’re human and we make mistakes.

 Read more... (1:05 mins reading time)

Rollbar Supports

Cutting Rollbar suports
In the photo above I am cutting 1/2″ by 1/2″ tubing to 39″. After that I cut out another piece to the same length.I also had to find the tubing while doing this in this process.
roll bar supports
The picture above shows the bars when they were finished being cut out. I also deburred them on both ends. This is the almost finished project.

Brake pins

photopennyOver a period of 3 days Coulter Roe made the brake stops for the car. They are small but are very important because they hold the brakes in place so that you have brakes at all times. How do you make them? First you cut out a 2- 1 inch piece of  flatbar. Next we use the mill to make them 11/16″ long. Now we file the edges to make them smooth. These stops will be welded onto the sides of the king pins.

Steering Bushing

deburing sterring pice
In the picture above I am deburing a hole I drilled to make sure that the 3/8″ bolt that goes through it will fit without forcing it. I cut the bar out of one inch by one inch tubing and cut it to one and a half inches long. Then I took it to the drill press and drilled a hole in it using a small hole and working my way up to the hole size.

finished project for steering This is my finished Project. I found the center of the part and drilled the hole. I used the chop saw to cut it to accurate length. I use a tri-square to find the middle of the part.

Firewall and fixing the Upper Frame

‘Ello people of electric car designing, I’m Jacob Taylor and recently I’ve been working on assembling the Firewall and fixing one of my colleagues Upper Frame.

photo (2)This is me putting my time and effort taking apart welds on the Upper Frame and Rear Fork. I’m doing this because it wasn’t aligned with the main design which could have resulted in a disaster if not noticed sooner or if we didn’t catch it at all! Both Rear Forks need to be aligned or the axle holding the rear tire could slip out and end up in disqualification. Luckly, I caught the mistake and is put up to the responsability to repairing it. This picture is me dye grinding the welds off, causing minimal damage to the tube, but leaving a whole bunch of time wasted due to grinding it and smoothing it to prepare it to be welded correctly (by me this time).

King Pins

The king pins are a very important part of the car. They help keep the front tire(s) in place. Making the king pins is pretty fun. First we cut 2 1″ wide 1/8″ thick square tube on the chopsaw to about 5.3/8″. Then we grind them down to about 5.380″. Complete   ROE SparksKing pin

Erik’s 90 degree bend

  First for the 90 degree bend, i had to find a 3/4″ tube piece and cut a 34″ long tube to get started. Next i had to lay out my part on my drawing to place my bend point(keep in mind that when you bend your metal, it stretches, so have your bend point at least a 1/4″ away from your previous point). After you have placed you bend point, you need to set up the bender as shown by your packet or instructor. Once the bender is set, you can now insert your part into the machine. Next get a torpedo level and place it on the part, before bending. Lift up the part until it is level, then start bending. Get as close as possible to 90 degrees, so that its easy to make it exactly 90 degrees. Next, take your part to a vise and lock securely. Then take another tube of metal that is a size up from your metal. Use this tube to bend your piece to exactly 90 degrees. Show your instructor to verify if your part is 90 degrees. Now its your turn, good luck!

 Read more... (46 secs reading time)

Main Structure Practice

shawn bending 90In this picture I am making the first 90 degree bend for my part. It takes some skill on how to know when your part is good enough to fit your measurements. In the picture bellow I am showing you what how to use a cheater bar. A cheater bar is used to make bends accurate if they don’t turn out how you wanted them to be.I started with a long bar of 3/4″ tubing and cut it into 29″. After that I took some of the basic tools and made it so the bar would be the length I wanted it to be.
using cheater bar

Mainframe Practice Bending

photo.JPGIn this picture I am making the first 90 degree bend for my part. It takes some skill on how to know when your part is good enough to fit your measurements. In the picture bellow I am showing you what how to use a cheater bar. A cheater bar is used to make bends accurate if they don’t turn out how you wanted them to be.I started with a long bar of 3/4″ tubing and cut it into 29″. After that I took some of the basic tools and made it so the bar would be the length I wanted it to be.

 Read more... (25 secs reading time)

Rear tube design/drafting


‘Ello people of electric car designing, I’m Jacob and recently i have been working on the first part for our electric car.Jacob measuringHere I am designing the rear tubes that support the rear tire and rear forks. The rear tubes are extremely crucial and need to be accurate or the entire car could be off by more than a sixteenth.

photo (1)This is the entire plywood with the drafted design, approximately closer to a sixteenth to desired measurements. This is the base of not only our designs and tubing, but also our electric car. I (with a little help from Coulter) had to sand the plywood to make it glossy and clean, making it easier to write on.

Rear fork on Mill

Coulter mill 2Coulter mill 1          In these pictures, Coulter Roe is building a rear fork for the CHS Electrathon team in White Salmon, WA. The rear fork is a very important part of the car. It holds up the rear wheel in the correct position. Building this part is pretty fun. First we cut a piece of flatbar to a measurement of 4 11/16″ on the chopsaw. Then we set up the mill to cut a 2″ groove in the part so the wheel spindle fits into it. Making this part is fun and is worth trying.