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Electric vehicles are in use everywhere. They have proven to be efficient, quiet, economical and clean. The price, range, speed and load capacity of electric cars today fit as much as 80% of the driving needs of commuters in the United States.


This is a journal of my attempt at...

A 4CV to 4EV Conversion


19 November 2005


This needs an update.

1959 Renault 4CV, master cylinder and wiring block Before any conversion or transplanting of suspensions can take place, the damages of time have to be repaired. This requires dismantling the vehicle to locate all the hidden problems.

The master cylinder reservoir is the funny looking little glass jar hanging inside the trunk (in the front) on the driver's side. That's it on the left side of the photo. The rubber base has deteriorated. The wiring block beside it looks good. None of the insulation has been cracked on any of the wires I've uncovered so far.

You can see the surface rust which almost covers the inside of the trunk. This is not a serious problem. I just wish the rest of the body had as little rust.


1959 Renault 4CV, turn signal light The chrome trim ring for the driver's side headlight has been missing since I got the car. The bumper was removed shortly before this photo was taken. Lots of penetrating oil and lots of time went into getting this light socket to come out without further damage.

That light housing hanging down has a vinyl (or some other synthetic material) seal; the only rust on it was from the body. No push-on connectors were evident anywhere along the wires, all the way back to the wiring block in the trunk. Pushing the bell-shaped seal back revealed the light fixture and 2 brass connectors with rusty steel screws.

1959 Renault 4CV, turn signal light assembly 1959 Renault 4CV, turn signal light assembly

Removing all of the lights on the front was not a big job. It was just tedious, time-consuming and required lots of penetrating oil. Few of the little screws and bolts broke, although it would have been simpler if they had.


1959 Renault 4CV, front lights removed 1959 Renault 4CV, headlight bucket 1959 Renault 4CV, headlight bucket Everything that was removed was bagged and tagged. Lots more photographs were taken than are shown here. There is no way of knowing how long it will be before reassembly begins and when that process starts, I don't want to get stuck trying to figure out where some obscure little part goes.

You can see the slightly strange method used to remove one of the badly rusted lower screws on the driver's side headlight bucket. It simply would not break loose with a screwdriver. There was enough space to insert needle-nose pliers and grab the shaft of the screw, but not enough grip to turn it. Vise grips on the pliers provided gripping force while the pliers provided the reach and leverage. Sometimes it's easy to get so wrapped up in the immediate problem at hand that you forget the big picture. The pliers were ruined to remove a junk screw.


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