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Old 02-03-2010, 02:35 PM   #31 (permalink)
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just exactly how far are you going to drive before stopping?


1000 miles?

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Old 02-03-2010, 02:51 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Possibly...I did 1,000 miles once, but my mom was in the hospital in FL and I was in MI.....it's not something I make a habit out of. To give you an idea, it took me a week to drive up when I first got based there, and only 30 hours to come back.

On back roads I usually average about 250-300 miles a day. When I picked my Trooper up in Richmond, it took us 4 days to drive the 900 miles home, but a lot of that was on twisty mountain back roads. On this trip, we stayed with other couchsurfers in Roanoke, Asheville, and Atlant and could have potentially plugged in overnight, but on other trips we may be camping off the grid if we find someplace neat.

We go to Gainesville or Jacksonville quite often to take my kids to visit their mother or to see my sister. Either way is about a 300mi round-trip and we don't usually stay overnight in Gainesville although I wouldn't mind doing so as I grew up there...it's just usually at the end of a weekend and we need to get back...besides, I doubt my ex would let me plug in LOL. Any trip to Orlando or Tampa is going to be 300 miles 1-way and we may or may not be able to plug in while there.

On some longer trips, we have topped 500-600 miles in a stretch by changing drivers...it's all according to how much time we have to get there vs how much we want to see enroute. We obviously aren't typical "get on the interstate and lock in the cruise" travelers, but sometimes you have to get someplace in reasonable amount of time, whether for work or to make the most of limited time off from work.

When we do SCA and Rainbow events out in the National Forest, It's about 200 miles there and we do not have grid power available although we could potentially run our generator a little bit in the evening before bedtime and some again in the morning after most folks are up.

That said, most use of this vehicle would be typical daily commuting, about 10 miles/day, during which it would be a pure plug-in EV.
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Old 02-03-2010, 03:03 PM   #33 (permalink)
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i gather then the ev trailer wouldnt just be used as a charging station

but also as camping storage as well



basically im trying to find reasons why you cant stop and charge periodically
or the cost difference between a larger generator versus a dedicated (heavy) trailer that would drop your efficiency
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Old 02-03-2010, 03:42 PM   #34 (permalink)
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You could stop and charge periodically...but for those of us with jobs and using our limited free time to go somewhere or do something with the kids, you may not be ready to stop and do something else beside drive while ou wait for the batteries to be charged. Yes, I agree that we should be willing to make certain lifestyle adjustments for the planet, but taking a 3-hr break in the middle of a trip might be asking more sacrifice than most folks are willing to put up with in order to drive an EV...especiall when by making the trailer powerful enough to eliminate that break, you can do your trip and git 'r dun....then unhook the trailer and go back to being a meek and mild little plug-in EV. I see it as giving an EV a dual personality...something that can lightfoot it around town while still retaining the highway range of a standard ICE car.

Yes, it would be a mobile charging station....with enough output to help the car over those hills or while carrying a load such as us, 2 teenagers, camping gear, and a couple of bicycles. I would want it to put out enough power to drive the vehicle on it's own at a reasonable speed (55 MPH perhaps?) on flat ground even if the batteries were dead, and to climb a hill with a good charge. I would have no problem shifting to first to make it up a hill as long as I could at least keep up with the semi-trucks and their loads.

Of course the original concept was to reuse components off of the original donor vehicles....you know, the whole reduce, reuse, recycle thing rather than buying more new/used stuff. Hence the ICE from the car, driving the big electric motor from the forklift as a generator with the other smaller 2 motors being used to move the car.

So far, I have yet to hear why reducing the duty cycle of the ICE/electric combo to meet reduced overall need is not a good idea; why not just run it only when the voltage falls below a certain level then turn it off again? Of course it might run continuously while climbing a mountain pass but that is why it is there....it'll stay off most of the way down the other side! Your comment about weight being the main reason I've heard to go with a smaller engine. Yes, weight may be an issue when using a diesel engine as the ICE....I'm not sure what's going to weigh less, as I just found some of these smaller diesels and have yet to look them up, but I suspect that a small automotive diesel might be fairly light compared to a similar-sized industrial diesel (see 2815 - Diesel Engines & Components at Government Liquidation )and probably cheaper too....perhaps this may be just one of the compromises to make to make an in-town EV highway-worthy without breaking the budget. Considering how little time most cars will spend on the open road compared to pulling daily commuting duty, some tradeoffs might be worth it. Of course, perhaps the ultimate answer may be to top looking at diesel for this application and we may have to look at that option at some point.

Camping storage is a minor factor...we often backpack, canoe, and bicycle-camp, so we can pack pretty tightly and we don't "take it all" with us. At any rate, if this trailer is also designed as an aerodynamic boattail, storage space should be available in the fairing...and we don't take our microwave, hair dryer, and easy chair with us, so I don't see much weight for camping gear..maybe 100 lbs at the most for 2-4 people.

If taking a road trip in an EV was as simple as strapping your Briggs and Stratton gen-set to the trunk-lid, why aren't more EVers doing it?

Last edited by ai4kk; 02-03-2010 at 03:52 PM..
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Old 02-04-2010, 02:14 AM   #35 (permalink)
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This all still comes down to:
Build the Ev conversion and ecomod it. Drive it around for some time so you know how much juice it needs at what speed and then build the trailer and add weight to simulate the engine to test energy consumption. Then start thinking about how powerful the generator should be to meet your needs, depending on whether you are willing to make compromises (lower speed, stops every 4-6 hours, etc.).

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