Puttering Around In A Converted Golf Cart

Technically speaking, golf carts are already sports cars, they’re just not very sporty in themselves. When [rtkerth] went to trade in his old golf cart for a new one, he found that it would be more valuable to hang on to the old one and have a bit of fun with it. The result is retro-styled kart that would not look out of place at a micro car show.

Before getting to the really fun bits, he had to do a bit of prep work, such as relocating the six large batteries so that super cool stock seat can sit lower. Now the batteries are distributed throughout the vehicle, including one that’s been cleverly disguised as center console. Since the cart won’t be hitting the links anymore, there’s no need for a place to put clubs. Two of the batteries are now in the back, supported by a platform made from old bed frames.

We love the fiberglass fab work [rtkerth] did to the front and rear — it looks great, especially considering he’d never done it before. The rear is done more traditionally with a foam mold, but the front is fiberglassed directly over expanding foam insulation framed with cardboard. The local body shops refused to paint this baby roadster, so [rtkerth] did it himself before adding the killer touches — 1930s Brooklands-style windscreens and 1950s bullet mirrors that look great together.

Believe it or not, this isn’t the first amazing golf cart mod we’ve seen. Go see this baby DeLorean before you’re outta time.

16 thoughts on “Puttering Around In A Converted Golf Cart

  1. Wow! It would be great for local trips for groceries and other light stuff. In PA, small electric vehicles are now permissible on non-highways, so I hope to make a Power Wheel or golf cart adapted for local use.

    1. That’s pretty cool! For the places I go and work around my city the cart would have to go at least 55mph for it to work out for me. But sounds like an ideal situation otherwise, I’d love it!

    2. Golf carts aren’t ideal for neighborhood vehicles though. The PbA batteries have a short replacement interval in that sort of use. 6×60 Ah batteries gives you 4.32 kWh of charge, of which you can ideally use only 5-10% at a time or the batteries won’t last – so a maximum of 432 Wh which gives you a range of about 2 miles even though you could go 20. You just don’t want to do that to lead acid batteries.

      For any practical range in daily use, you’ll be chewing through the batteries in about 14 months as was found out by the US post office in the 80’s when they tried to electrify their fleet of mail vans. At $600 a pop to replace, you’re looking at 200-300 gallons of gasoline worth which would buy you around 17 miles a day anyways in a real car.

      Your results may vary, but it’s a tight line. The golf cart is most economical over distances you could easily just walk or cycle: 1-2 miles out and back. The break-even distance to a regular car is around 5-8 miles and back. It could be a town go-getter if you live right next to town.

      1. The question of “how far you can go” with an electric vehicle is interesting, because you can paint a circle with a radius of 8 miles around your home and see that there’s all sorts of places you could go – if there was only a straight radial road there and back. Then, do you want to use all the range to go to one place, or do you need to visit two, three? All that eats up into your maximum travel radius.

        Suppose you’re doing 50/50 by going 4 miles out and 4 miles around. Well, in my case that would mean not getting to the other side of town from where I live – I’d have to leave the car at the church and walk the rest of the way to the hardware store.

        Hence, better buy lithium.

          1. Point being: 12 V x 60 Ah = 720 Wh. Reduce by 20% maximum DoD so you don’t kill the battery instantly, then multiply by six: 864 Wh of usable energy.

            Now, if you’re telling me that you have a golf cart that goes 30-60 miles on less than a kilowatt-hour of energy, I can tell you where you can saw off that extra length of nose.

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