Part Wanted WTB: FFE lower battery connector "locking lever".

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ajbessinger

Member
Joined
May 2, 2024
Messages
15
Location
Portland Oregon
I accidentally broke one of the locking levers when removing the battery to repair an internal coolant leak on my 2013 FFE (the one located behind the driver's side wheel, that of course get's caked with dirt, ugh).
Anyways, it looks like the Delphi (now called Aptiv) connector must be discontinued, as I can find it on any of the normal electronics sites (Digikey, Mouser, etc.), not does it show up in Aptiv's catalogs.
If anyone happens to have an FFE parts car that they can pull one of those locking levers off of, I'd really like to get ahold of one. Both lower battery connectors are the same (one located behind left side rear wheel, and one underneath in the "tunnel"), so either one will do. Pics attached for reference.

20240507_144355.jpg

20240507_144329.jpg
 
Congrats, what vehicle did you pull it from, another FFE, or other Ford hybrid product? Or different marque alltogether?
 
I've written about that before. They get brittle. The dealer destroyed one of mine and the other, I cracked when removing. I fixed mine with some fiberglass and epoxy, but the one the dealer broke, I had to craft a bracket to allow it to be zip tied in place. It is a little cringy, but it works and I've had no problems with it. A new lever would not work because the dealer also broke the pivot point on the receiving connector.

I'd also recommend putting a little grease on the sliding parts so that they will slide on easily. If you're worried about attracting dirt, perhaps a dry lubricant would work. You just want to avoid applying too much force to the lever so it doesn't break. Also, in my last battery repair, I tried to operate the lever as close to the pivot point as I could, where the plastic is more substantial.

As for your broken lever, I'd keep it. Congrats for finding a replacement. But if there is a next time, you might be able to fix the one you have with some epoxy and fiberglass like I did. Use super glue to hold the parts together, and then reinforce with epoxy infused fiberglass. My other lever that I cracked, broke in the same location as yours did. I just roughed up the surface with sandpaper, applied the epoxy and fiberglass, and when dried, it was strong enough to go back on the car without issue. We'll see if it holds up. :)
 

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I've written about that before. They get brittle. The dealer destroyed one of mine and the other, I cracked when removing. I fixed mine with some fiberglass and epoxy, but the one the dealer broke, I had to craft a bracket to allow it to be zip tied in place. It is a little cringy, but it works and I've had no problems with it. A new lever would not work because the dealer also broke the pivot point on the receiving connector.

I'd also recommend putting a little grease on the sliding parts so that they will slide on easily. If you're worried about attracting dirt, perhaps a dry lubricant would work. You just want to avoid applying too much force to the lever so it doesn't break. Also, in my last battery repair, I tried to operate the lever as close to the pivot point as I could, where the plastic is more substantial.

As for your broken lever, I'd keep it. Congrats for finding a replacement. But if there is a next time, you might be able to fix the one you have with some epoxy and fiberglass like I did. Use super glue to hold the parts together, and then reinforce with epoxy infused fiberglass. My other lever that I cracked, broke in the same location as yours did. I just roughed up the surface with sandpaper, applied the epoxy and fiberglass, and when dried, it was strong enough to go back on the car without issue. We'll see if it holds up. :)
I was thinking it might be possible to 3D print a "reinforced" version. 3D printed parts often aren't super strong, but with enough reinforcement in the design, it might work.
 
Tesla was having a problem with service technicians sloppily attaching high voltage connectors and breaking handles and header alignment pins. The tooling engineers devised a jig that kept the handle in the correct "open" position while the connector was attached to the header. It was ridiculous that such a tool needed to be made. Only after proper training and service manual updates was the tool now unnecessary.

Think about that for a second. Then check out what the FFE service manual says about disconnecting and connecting the high voltage connectors.
Nothing. Just an arrow pointing to the the connector.
 
I was thinking it might be possible to 3D print a "reinforced" version. 3D printed parts often aren't super strong, but with enough reinforcement in the design, it might work.
If you do that, there are some resins that are stupidly strong. I would not trust FDM to replace what is likely a glass fiber reinforced molded part.

Perhaps something like this
 
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