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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As most owners and potential buyers always refer to the infamous green dots on the motors as having hardened splines (my own belief as well for quite some time). I thought I'd provide some clarity on this as things aren't quite as they seem.
First, Fisker was never completely certain on the definition of the green dots. Let's break down the green dot itself. There are two completely different green paint marks. A large green circle painted with spray paint using a stencil in a broken "O" about 2 inches around is the latest and most current traction motor with a part # index ending in 003. This part # is etched in the motor by the connector.
The paint dot in question here is the small half inch to 1 inch paint or chalk hand drawn circle. Typically found up against the RDM mating surface at 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock positions.
It was my belief up until today that thsee both meant hardened splines. My reasoning was than every traction motor I removed with worn or sheared splines up to this point had no green markings at all.
However I've disproven this theory today as I received a car in from NY with sheared splines. Car won't move, rear TM just spinning freely and singing with no resistance. Both motors with green dots as described above. VIN # in the mid 700s. It's apparent after a lengthy discussion with Fisker tech that the green dot may just be an indication of the improved case welds in production, so they are learning. Seems to be a logical explanation as I have had case weld leaks and also never with green dots or circles.
My reason for this lengthy post is because I have looked at many cars and had many people buying refer to these green dots as hard spline motors when they may, in fact, not be. My apologies if this has misled but we are all learning these things as we go.
The one thing we do know is that a motor part # with an index ending with 003 is for sure hard splined. This # is found etched in the electrical box near the connector with a serial # as well.
Hope this provides some clarity.
 

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Thanks for the detailed update @FiskerPhilly. So just to be 100% clear on what you're saying:

1) If the TM has the broken "O" in green spray paint and number 003, then it has hardened splines?
2) If your TM has a green dot and no green spray paint broken "O", then they could be the older and softer splines?

My last question is it possible/easy to verify the 003 number without taking apart the rear end? Alex said my splines looked "good" when he did the RDM rebuild and loctite, but I would like to know if my TMs are the updated versions with hardened splines. My TMs definitely have the green spray painted broken "O". I'll see if I can dig up a picture I took previously and posted in another thread.
 

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Joe - can we and where do we see these numbers while looking under the car or does it need to be on a lift to see these markings?

Thanks DH
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
@WATTGAS you are fine with the big green stencil spray painted O's for sure. I remember your picture and you're good
@DHH they can only be seen on a lift as they are up against the rear bumper on one end and against the back of the HV battery on the other. Real hard to see even on the lift. I need to use a mirror and read the string of #s backwards (it's a new skill I've developed, backwards part # reading)
 

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Posting this picture here for anyone that hasn't seen the green "O" referred to below. This is looking at the TM closest to the rear bumper of the Karma.

P.S. Sorry for the fuzzy resolution.
 

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As most owners and potential buyers always refer to the infamous green dots on the motors as having hardened splines (my own belief as well for quite some time). I thought I'd provide some clarity on this as things aren't quite as they seem.
First, Fisker was never completely certain on the definition of the green dots. Let's break down the green dot itself. There are two completely different green paint marks. A large green circle painted with spray paint using a stencil in a broken "O" about 2 inches around is the latest and most current traction motor with a part # index ending in 003. This part # is etched in the motor by the connector.
The paint dot in question here is the small half inch to 1 inch paint or chalk hand drawn circle. Typically found up against the RDM mating surface at 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock positions.
It was my belief up until today that thsee both meant hardened splines. My reasoning was than every traction motor I removed with worn or sheared splines up to this point had no green markings at all.
However I've disproven this theory today as I received a car in from NY with sheared splines. Car won't move, rear TM just spinning freely and singing with no resistance. Both motors with green dots as described above. VIN # in the mid 700s. It's apparent after a lengthy discussion with Fisker tech that the green dot may just be an indication of the improved case welds in production, so they are learning. Seems to be a logical explanation as I have had case weld leaks and also never with green dots or circles.
My reason for this lengthy post is because I have looked at many cars and had many people buying refer to these green dots as hard spline motors when they may, in fact, not be. My apologies if this has misled but we are all learning these things as we go.
The one thing we do know is that a motor part # with an index ending with 003 is for sure hard splined. This # is found etched in the electrical box near the connector with a serial # as well.
Hope this provides some clarity.
Joe, thanks for the update. When I come up for my visit, we can re-look at my motor since I recall you indicated I had a green dot -- with this added info we can verify and decide course of action before the end of the year... thank you for the continued research and update ...
 

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Posting this picture here for anyone that hasn't seen the green "O" referred to below. This is looking at the TM closest to the rear bumper of the Karma.

P.S. Sorry for the fuzzy resolution.
That's like a picture of Sasquatch! Blurry cam!

Thank you
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Joe, thanks for the update. When I come up for my visit, we can re-look at my motor since I recall you indicated I had a green dot -- with this added info we can verify and decide course of action before the end of the year... thank you for the continued research and update ...
Yes Mike your car came to mind first on this as I remember looking at it and showing you the green dots and your VIN being below 1000 or so. It makes more sense that you may actually have the soft splines.
 

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Thank you for the update and great info Joe. I am guessing that if my Karma has soft splines they should be replaced. I have over 25K on the car, drive daily with no issues but it seems that it will not matter. If they are soft they should be changed out, is that the consensus?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well the jury is still out on that one. I have a client with over 80k on the original soft splines (he is on borrowed time as the are starting to make some noise).
No rhyme or reason to when and if. I do know that if you're not beating on it from dead stops, you would definitely get some advanced warning signs in the way of noises, clunking on slight accel,decel.
 

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Said it before, but @KARMANEWS from the new Fisker told us personally (when they came out to talk with us owners last May) that they swear by using your parking brake religiously as a good way to protect your splines. It's 5300 lbs rocking on them in Park that is the major killing factor. He said it is gonna be something that happens "for you" automatically with the 530 update. Meanwhile ... It's part of my shutdown checklist.
 

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Yes Mike your car came to mind first on this as I remember looking at it and showing you the green dots and your VIN being below 1000 or so. It makes more sense that you may actually have the soft splines.
joe, i hear the rattle/gurgle when i go backwards and on slow crawl going forward, so i am worried.
 

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Said it before, but @KARMANEWS from the new Fisker told us personally (when they came out to talk with us owners last May) that they swear by using your parking brake religiously as a good way to protect your splines. It's 5300 lbs rocking on them in Park that is the major killing factor. He said it is gonna be something that happens "for you" automatically with the 530 update. Meanwhile ... It's part of my shutdown checklist.

Thanks JC, now that makes more sense. I will have to change my shut down routine as well. I would only do that when parking on a hill but it can not hurt. I am still looking to have my splines checked and likely replaced soon but I am waiting for the next software update to do a full change over all at once. My service provider is only 120 miles away but I hate to not have my Karma to drive. It is so hard to figure a good time to give it up for a few days.
 

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They said, with a 5300 lb car, even a slight hill (like the one inside your garage that encourages melt water to flow out the door) was putting pressure on the splines. Discernible hill or not, I just pull the button.
 

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They said, with a 5300 lb car, even a slight hill (like the one inside your garage that encourages melt water to flow out the door) was putting pressure on the splines. Discernible hill or not, I just pull the button.
i've been doing the brake since it was posted a month ago -- so hopefully that limits the damage, but that does not eliminate the need for replacement if I get the chance and have no 003 to indicated the updated drive
 

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If Loc-Tite is applied to the splines it really does not matter if they are hard or soft- it is less likely you will have a spun motor. The hardened splines exhibit something known as Mid-Speed Growl (MSG) this is heard at highway speeds and sounds like a rhythmic hum- this is the most telling noise that your vehicle has hardened splines. Hardened splines tend to transmit noise more so than the soft splines. I have never seen a spline failure after loc-tite was *properly* applied.

With regards to parking brake saving the RDM I have to call BS on that one. We are talking about a manufacturing defect (shaft manufacturing has too much backlash, among other issues) and the only way to really fix it is to have better fitting splines or fill that space up with something (i.e loc-tite).
 

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I don't think Fisker were ever suggesting that the Loc-Tite isn't a must. Just that rocking backward in "park" isn't good for the car either.
 
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