Go Back   EcoModder Forum > Introductions
Register Now
 Register Now
 

Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 08-08-2016, 05:44 PM   #1 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Gilroy, CA
Posts: 8
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Hi from sunny California!

Hi,

I'm Richard. I've frequented the different eco driving forums as a browser over the last five years or so, but never really getting involved.

Five years ago I began commuting 40 minutes each way without traffic, and my monthly gas bill got ridiculous. I started looking at ways you guys were improving fuel economy without making any changes - basically being easier on the accelerator, constant throttle instead of constant speed over hills, those types of things. These seemed to help, but my '96 Dodge Stratus didn't have any built in eco meters, and I wasn't a fan of having to use my cell phone to monitor an OBD device every time I went driving.

When we got a Nissan Leaf, the changes in how I drove really became noticeable. Hills for some reason, seem to have a more noticeable impact in EVs than in gas vehicles - may just be due to the short range in EVs to start with, but nonetheless it got my attention much quicker.

Anyways, the leaf had to go (we reduced down to 1 vehicle and my wife wasn't up for making multiple charging stops on the way from San Jose to Reno - there's also a region along I-80 that's pretty bleak for chargers), and now we're driving an '11 Camry, which I'm fairly happy with. It's not a hybrid, but the hybrid premium isn't worth it for me now that I don't commute.

I'd probably get a Leaf again as a commuter or 2nd car, though I might look into more "normal" looking cars. I'd actually really like an electric SUV, but I'd be using that for trips to places where charging would be limited - like Yosemite, or other national parks - so I'm worried about practicality.

Anyways, nice to meet you all!

  Reply With Quote
Alt Today
Popular topics

Other popular topics in this forum...

   
Old 08-09-2016, 11:11 AM   #2 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Sweden
Posts: 98

Renee - '92 Renault 50 Series
90 day: 21.21 mpg (US)

EscortEstate - '97 Ford Escort mk6 ANL
90 day: 37.66 mpg (US)
Thanks: 25
Thanked 25 Times in 20 Posts
I have been wondering recently about charging an electric vehicle whilst on the go.

My thought was the idea of a trailer with a generator, then having a simple sensor so when the batteries get to a certain point (40 % or so) the generator kicks in.

I have asked a car guru at work and at first laughed at the idea, then as it sunk in he thought it would be a great way to extend the range of an electric vehicle. He was rather unsure about the legality of it though.

I'm a newbie poster here, but much like yourself have been hiding in the shadows for many years.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2016, 01:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Gilroy, CA
Posts: 8
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
That's more or less what they do with the Volt isn't it? I hear Nissan's extended range Leaf will have a generator as well.

I think it's a cool idea, and the OEMs are clearly going that way. I don't know if actually towing a generator will be the most economical though.

I thought about this for a bit, and there's two challenges I see to a DIY solution:

1. you've got the additional drag of the trailer and higher load for the generator. The advantage of the Leaf & Volt systems would be that they can minimize losses from the generator to the batteries/engine - you'll have the generator loss, loss in the cable, and the normal charging losses in the vehicle.

2. You won't be able to directly drive the motor with the generator, it'll have to be supplemented by the batteries. Using the leaf as an example, even if you had a 6kW generator at 240V, you're going to dissipate power quicker than can be supplied through the charging port. Using the quick charge port would get you the power you need though. I think to do this properly, you're going to need to get into the motor controller circuitry, perhaps even do a custom motor controller. Which would be fun.

I wonder if anyone's thought of actually making an aftermarket part like this - maybe strapped to one of those luggage racks that goes in a trailer hitch? I'm with you on seeing the appeal to take your short-range EV on a road trip!
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2016, 02:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
Administrator
 
Daox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Germantown, WI
Posts: 10,910

CM400E - '81 Honda CM400E
90 day: 58.68 mpg (US)

Daox's Grey Prius - '04 Toyota Prius
Team Toyota
90 day: 49.53 mpg (US)

Daox's Insight - '00 Honda Insight
90 day: 64.33 mpg (US)

Swarthy - '14 Mitsubishi Mirage DE
90 day: 60.65 mpg (US)
Thanks: 2,260
Thanked 2,345 Times in 1,420 Posts
Welcome to the site Baver!

What brings you out of the lurking status? Are you looking for a second car now?
__________________
Current project: Adding regenerative braking to the Mirage
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2016, 02:18 PM   #5 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Gilroy, CA
Posts: 8
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanks Doax!

I'm coming out of lurker status for a few reasons - one, you guys have been a great resource over the years, and I want to contribute back. Two, I mentioned here a while ago that I was working on a route aware cruise control, and it's a semi-finalist in the SEMA Launch Pad competition. I thought I would give an update in case anyone's interested, and humbly ask for their vote.

I'm wanting a 2nd car right now, though not looking. Strategizing about what I should get, but not in a position to buy or lease one. The Camry is surprisingly tight with two kids and rear facing carseats. I'm thinking of needing to go up to an SUV or Subaru-crossover style vehicle (I really like the crossover, and I think it comes in a PHEV option - not sure what the premium is though). Got any suggestions?
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-09-2016, 06:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
Cyborg ECU
 
California98Civic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Coastal Southern California
Posts: 5,211

Black and Green - '98 Honda Civic DX Coupe
Team Honda
90 day: 64.33 mpg (US)

Black and Red - '00 Nashbar Custom built eBike
90 day: 3671.43 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1,853
Thanked 1,552 Times in 1,056 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by baver View Post
... I mentioned here a while ago that I was working on a route aware cruise control, and it's a semi-finalist in the SEMA Launch Pad competition. I thought I would give an update in case anyone's interested, and humbly ask for their vote. ...
Yeah, post an update... and congratulations on being a semi-finalist.
__________________


See my car's mod & maintenance thread and my electric bicycle's thread for ongoing projects. I will rebuild Black and Green over decades as parts die, until it becomes a different car of roughly the same shape and color. My minimum fuel economy goal is 55 mpg while averaging posted speed limits. I generally top 60 mpg. See also my Honda manual transmission specs thread.

  Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2016, 06:35 AM   #7 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: UK, Bristol
Posts: 5
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Hi!

Quote:
Originally Posted by baver View Post
Hi,

I'm Richard. I've frequented the different eco driving forums as a browser over the last five years or so, but never really getting involved.

Five years ago I began commuting 40 minutes each way without traffic, and my monthly gas bill got ridiculous. I started looking at ways you guys were improving fuel economy without making any changes - basically being easier on the accelerator, constant throttle instead of constant speed over hills, those types of things. These seemed to help, but my '96 Dodge Stratus didn't have any built in eco meters, and I wasn't a fan of having to use my cell phone to monitor an OBD device every time I went driving.

When we got a Nissan Leaf, the changes in how I drove really became noticeable. Hills for some reason, seem to have a more noticeable impact in EVs than in gas vehicles - may just be due to the short range in EVs to start with, but nonetheless it got my attention much quicker.

Anyways, the leaf had to go (we reduced down to 1 vehicle and my wife wasn't up for making multiple charging stops on the way from San Jose to Reno - there's also a region along I-80 that's pretty bleak for chargers), and now we're driving an '11 Camry, which I'm fairly happy with. It's not a hybrid, but the hybrid premium isn't worth it for me now that I don't commute.

I'd probably get a Leaf again as a commuter or 2nd car, though I might look into more "normal" looking cars. I'd actually really like an electric SUV, but I'd be using that for trips to places where charging would be limited - like Yosemite, or other national parks - so I'm worried about practicality.

Anyways, nice to meet you all!
Hi, Richard! I am Beth, nice to see you here!

  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread


Thread Tools




Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com