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Old 09-10-2012, 01:52 PM   #71 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beatr911 View Post
I gotta wonder. With the huge savings potential for freight companies, why aren't these technologies and driving techniques being used on a huge scale?

For just 3000 miles of driving at 14mpg vs 8mpg at $4/gal is $642 additional profit available. What am I missing? What reasons do companies have to spend these profits more wisely?

Just guessing. Is it delivery speed? Driver labor costs? Inability to incentivize the drivers to not drive like idiots? What?
We don't drive it like an idiot. Most everybody else, does.

"The idiots" (of which I am one)

and

the questions posed by the quoted post,

tend to come down to [1] subsidized fuel and [2] a market with "rules" (artifical props and constraints) that lead to this outcome.

The perversity of profit for the few is borne by society at large (and the small players within it). While this isn't strictly speaking an answer to either, it is good enough for a point of departure. "Enerrgy independence" is an advertising slogan, but not much else, unfortunately.

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Old 09-10-2012, 07:39 PM   #72 (permalink)
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I'd mainly have to guess it all comes to supply and demand.
When things aren't shipped out, or not on time, the market takes some sort of hit. (as substantial as it can be)
Shipping companies rely on their drivers to make the delivaries as fast and safely as possible so they can keep contracts, and money rolling into the business. When things aren't done on schedule, the market is at a loss of product, things fall out of line. At which Drivers for whatever reason have to "make up lost time" or take that penalty(decreased efficiency and safety).
More loads = more income. Time is money, Most don't have the time to take and go "55mph" when they need to be there "Now"...

When you are dedicated like this man, who understands and knows the importance between time/work and the economics to save money on his own then he's at a win win.

If you think, Tractor trailers over seas are restricted to 56mph. Safety would be top, considering the more congested roads, but they also have a different supply and demand economy that allows for such restrictions. who knows...

just my .02
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Last edited by RiderofBikes; 09-10-2012 at 07:53 PM..
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Old 09-10-2012, 09:22 PM   #73 (permalink)
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Maybe it's this site and others etc that has brought about these changes in recent years, I can just imagine where all this is going and fast.Changes in commercial transportation is going to have a huge effect in fuel/cost savings. This will change aero designs of truck and more add on aero packages being produced.
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Old 09-10-2012, 09:49 PM   #74 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slowmover View Post
We don't drive it like an idiot. Most everybody else, does.

"The idiots" (of which I am one)

and

the questions posed by the quoted post,

tend to come down to [1] subsidized fuel and [2] a market with "rules" (artifical props and constraints) that lead to this outcome.

The perversity of profit for the few is borne by society at large (and the small players within it).
.
Even with these at play it seems there is still additional profit to be made by an efficient transport vehicle as stated. With the aero improvements and driving at 55 the big mpg numbers come. I don't mean to hijack this thread but my simple mind sees a potential here.

I drive the freeways like everyone else and see the occasional idjit going 70+ in a 60 zone in the far left lane of a 6 lane interstate. By far, most rig drivers are excellent examples though.

I don't intend to even imply that even the majority of rig drivers are idiots. Handling all that kinetic energy with cross traffic, infinitely variable weather, traffic and light conditions is no easy task to do safely day after day.

Maybe fuel efficiency is just a background din to the already deafening noise of the daily business at hand. I don't know.
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Old 09-11-2012, 12:21 AM   #75 (permalink)
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I doubt it has anything to do with market economics or law.
Its simply human nature - the one thing which always overrules profit.

Change is slow.
20 years ago most semi-trucks had flat roofs. Now very few don't have a sloped shell to protect the top leading edge of the trailer from the wind. 5 years ago there was no such thing as semi-trailer side skirts, now it seems to be about 1 in 5 of them have them, and increasing rapidly with time.

People do things a certain way just because its how it has always been done.
There is no logical reason we don't use the metric system, but people - and especially Americans - fear change.

Until at least one person does something new, it doesn't even occur to most people that there could be another way.
When the first person does something different, its too weird to emulate.
Eventually a second and third person does it too, and then suddenly its a brilliant idea that everyone wants to jump on.

20 years from now every truck will look like the AirFlow BulletTruck.
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A few months ago I returned home just as my neighbor pulled into his driveway. It was cold (around freezing) with some rain and sleet, and he yells to me: You rode your bike? In this weather?!?

So the other day we both returned home at the same time again, only now the weather is warm, sunny, with no wind. And I yell to him: You took the car? In this weather?!?
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Old 09-11-2012, 12:35 AM   #76 (permalink)
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We have decided that the new truck will be electromotive power. A Cummins diesel engine powering a generator powering hub motors. No tranny or differential. Not a hybrid, no batteries. Batteries are not mature and cost too much, especially for a Class 8 truck. We are designing the truck with a battery bay so they will hopefully be plug-n-play when low (lower?) cost batteries become available.
This sounds so flipping awesome. It seems to me you're suggesting a diesel-electric train that runs on the road... Offering higher efficiency with the flexibility offered by the highway system.

I am curious though, what are you doing about that glaring gap between the back of the cab and the front of the trailer? I would think any solution would have to be flexible for driving conditions, and easily disconnected when swapping trailers etc.
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Old 09-11-2012, 08:33 AM   #77 (permalink)
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I'm curious what your thoughts are on running trucks on CNG, or making a CNG electromotive truck? Everybody keeps saying that that all trucks should run off CNG, but do you find this realistic or is it cost prohibitive to have giant CNG tanks. Range issues and filling stations?
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:24 AM   #78 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by pete c View Post
What is the efficiency of spinning a generator to spin electric hubs? I would think it is considerably lower than a conventional drivetrain. Trains have done it for years, but, the reason is that no one can figure out how to build a beefy enough clutch.

I do think this idea can work as soon as battery technology gets to the point where it is practical. This would be a huge advantage in hilly areas. Just think of how many megawatts of power get turned into noise through jake brakes every day. Sure would be nice to turn it back into stored electrons for the next uphill.
It would allow the diesel to run at a constant speed, except when going down hill, where it would idle.

The mechanical losses from a 13 speed transmission and a monster size differential churning all that oil with those monster gears are not very efficient.

We plan on using batteries as soon as they become light and cheap enough. We will already be one step of everyone else when they become available with the electromotive drivetrain.
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:46 AM   #79 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by RiderofBikes View Post
Time is money, Most don't have the time to take and go "55mph" when they need to be there "Now"...
The same trucks pass me @ 65-75 mph, time and time again, all day long. They blow my doors off right after breakfast, mid-morning, lunch time, all afternoon and evening. All day long. Every day.

They end up at the same truck stop at the end of the day that we do.

Remember the Aesop's Fable about the Tortoise and the Hare?

Who won that race?
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Old 09-11-2012, 11:06 AM   #80 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flakbadger View Post
This sounds so flipping awesome. It seems to me you're suggesting a diesel-electric train that runs on the road... Offering higher efficiency with the flexibility offered by the highway system.
Exactly. Now you have it.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Flakbadger View Post
I am curious though, what are you doing about that glaring gap between the back of the cab and the front of the trailer? I would think any solution would have to be flexible for driving conditions, and easily disconnected when swapping trailers etc.
We will have an air bladder that inflates at 35 mph and deflates very quickly below that speed. It will seal up that gap tighter than a bulls rear-end in fly season.




[/QUOTE]

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