Archive for November, 2017

GEVA Minutes 11/12/17


Minutes from 10/8/17 were read and approved.

There was discussion of new types of batteries. Wayne said that there is some new research using sodium instead of lithium for batteries. Sodium would be cheaper and more environmentally friendly. Kyle said that one big advantage with sodium is that the battery can be discharged to zero state of charge without harm. This trait makes it very safe to store and ship.

Kyle said that he saw a news story where a reporter drove a hydrogen fueled vehicle around Washington D.C. He said that H. W. Bush had been a proponent of hydrogen vehicles when he was president. Kyle noted that hydrogen is most economically produced by extracting it from natural gas.  Wayne added that it would probably be more efficient to just charge a battery than convert natural gas to hydrogen.

Gary told of taking a test drive in a Bolt. He said that Bommarito on Manchester Rd. has 9 on their lot. He was very impressed with the vehicle and it had great acceleration. Price depends on options but is about $37,000. With better than a 200 mile range, he thinks it is a great deal.

Wayne informed the club that he would be out of town for the December meeting. The club voted to cancel the December meeting and Wayne will send a few notices to that effect.

The club talked about the possibe federal budget cut of the $7500 tax credit for buying an electric vehicle. Gary said that Plug-in America and the Sierra Club are starting petitions to lobby congress to keep the tax credit. The battery manufactures are on board with keeping the credit. Mike said that Elon Musk at Tesla is OK with elimination of the credit because Tesla is almost at the maximum credit. The maximum is 200,000 cars sold in the US.

Wayne said that he plans to add regenerative braking to his 1971 VW Beetle conversion to recover braking energy into the batteries and to make the brakes last longer.

Wayne gave a talk on “Regenerative (Regen) Braking”. He talked about how idle regen and brake regen work and how effective they are. Regen braking is most useful under start -stop driving conditions and typically adds only about 10% to the range.

GEVA minutes 10/8/17


Minutes from 9/10/17 were read and approved.

Gary reported on the Drive Electric Event at the planetarium on Sep 17, 2017. He said a BMW i3 was there and the ride was very good. A plug-in Cooper was also at the event. He saw the Model X vehicles and they demonstrated that they could flap their wings in unison!

Tyler said the total number of vehicles at the event was 39 with Tesla having the most of any kind.  The event totals are 8 TeslaS , 5 TeslaX, 6 Leaf, 4 Volt, 4 Bolt, 4 BMWi3, 3 CMax,  1 Think City, 1 Zenn, 1 Datsun  truck conversion, 1 Ranger conversion, 1 VW Beetle conversion. He estimated the attendance of between 350 and 400 people.

Dan reported that he had a sign and wall divider that were stolen after the event. He is working with the security guards and police to see if the theft was caught on the security cameras.

Wayne said that he received an email from Joel Levin about Ameren MO renewed interest in renewable energy. Coal power plants are being taken off line. Tyler said the nuclear waste it has is still stored in pools and is still hot.

Tyler informed the club about the VW emissions scandal and the settlement to Missouri. A letter from the Sierra Club asks citizens to send letters to the Governor demanding that the funds be used to invest in electric vehicle infrastructure. The letter is on their website. Three million letters have already been sent.

Because of Halloween, the club decided  the EV social for this month only will be on  Tuesday (10/24). Place is Schlafly Bottleworks and time is 6PM.

Gary said he saw a new 2018 Leaf on the road. Dan said that salesmen are waiting until 2019 to start selling the 2018 model.

Greg told the club that he learned of a new system for hauling rock and ore down a mountain. The plan is to use an electric dump truck with a 640kWh battery. The truck would load up at the top of the mountain and charge the onboard battery going down. Then the truck would dump the load (making it much lighter) and use the charged battery to get back to the top. No additional energy would be needed.

Wayne gave a talk on “Electrons are like water”. It was well received.

Mike asked if someone could give a talk about how regenerative braking works.

GEVA minutes 9/10/17


Minutes from 8/13/17 were read and approved.

The club talked about the National Drive Electric Week (NDEW) event next week at the Science Center planetarium. Tyler said he put his Zen EV by the front entrance of the Science Center Monday with a banner advertizing the event. Wayne said that he received the NDEW event materials from Nissan who is the primary sponsor. The materials included five 2×3 ft plastic signs, a banner, Nissan caps, water bottles, cell phone fans, bumper stickers, tote bags, 2018 Nissan Leaf brochures, and T shirts for the city captains. Wayne said he was disappointed that the only items with NDEW on them were the signs and banner. Wayne said that in past years NDEW and Nissan were on the T shirts and most all of the other event materials.

Tyler said that Flying Tiger was planning to be at NDEW with their electric motorcycles. Ralph is bringing his new Bolt EV and Dan may bring a BYD EV down from Chicago. Greg asked if MO Science and Technology could bring a solar vehicle but no one had a contact for them. Kyle said they have a rare EV1 that he would like to see at the event.  Mike wanted to know if there would be any dealers at the event and Tyler said that BMW may come. Mike also wanted to know if there are any Ford Focus EVs in the area to bring. Wayne said he talked to Ron Erb who has a son that works for Ford and is working to fix problems with the Focus. They are having problems with the vehicle not turning on.

Wayne said that he contacted John VonBokel in the Tesla group about bringing some vehicles.

Wayne talked to long time club members Ron Erb and Jeff Dale about coming to NDEW this year.

Lyn said that the EV social for August had a good turnout of 14 people. EV social meets the last Tuesday of the month at Schlafly Bottleworks at 6pm. It is open to all to show their electric vehicles or talk to owners.

Wayne asked if anyone in the club knew how many electric vehicles are stolen. Kyle said that the rates are quite low and that he has only heard of a few thefts. In one case the thief did not know how to turn it on!

Dan told of the electric vehicle show he is working on with Larry Rice. He already has some interviews and plans to interview some EV owners at the NDEW event.

Wayne said that he saw Dennis with his 1965 Datsun truck conversion at the Westport Plaza car show this Sunday. Wayne talked with an attendee at the show and asked if he had ever driven an electric vehicle. The response was that he had driven an electric golf cart!

Wayne said that he is working on some talks about basic electricity in connection with electric vehicles. He will present them to the club at future meetings.

Jim showed a video of the Tesla factory from the TV show “Impossible Engineering”.