June 2015 Minutes

It was a beautiful day, in a beautiful meeting space. After our snacks and drinks, Ron called the meeting to order. With the introductions, we got another treat. Members had an adapter for the old Avcon connector (predecessor to our J1772 about fifteen years ago), and the inductive paddle (also built for late-90s EVs).Screenshot from 2015-06-20 23:02

Dennis gave us the post-race report on the Junior Solar Sprints, May 19 in the District. The rain held off, and about 36 teams (multiple students per team) participated.

In legislative news, the condo/commercial installations bill died with the end of the Annapolis session. The Tesla direct sales bill, however, passed and was signed. Montgomery County is considering a similar bill, allowing reasonable condo charging installations despite HOAs, but the state had moved to block counties from this.Screenshot from 2015-06-20 23:22

The EV Readiness Workshop will be held June 30, at the MWCOG offices near Union Station. Local leaders and interested parties, with registration, can learn how to make their communities EV-friendly. The event will start, first thing, with networking, then test rides in EVs. Our secretary Scott has a lobby letter, with example installations such as tourist charging for the main streets of small vacation towns. People on day trips can charge while shopping and dining. Similarly, Tesla has encouraged the installation of not-so-superchargers, for hotels and other places where tourists are likely to linger. Many of these also have a J1772 plug for non-Teslas. Meanwhile the first Maryland Electric Highway charging site is now up, at a Royal Farms in Camp Springs. At least one person has used its SAE CCS fast charger.

Another effort from Scott, a post on historic charging, was linked by greencarreports.com. Word is spreading! Similarly, Local Motors is getting more coverage for their 3D-printed vehicles, along with a DoE printed car. We saw a 3D printing video, and one from Joyce’s son and his high school EV project.

In member news, Charlie’s Porsche has all the pieces in place, for its switch from NiCd to lithium. However, it’s still got some work required before running. Curt found a replacement Tesla Roadster, for his totaled vehicle. Dave has a CHAdeMO-to-Tesla adapter coming.

Pepco is expanding its successful EV charging program, with low nighttime power rates. Customers in the pilot version of the program had a party at Pepco’s Rockville office; Scott and Doron attended. ¬†There, Pepco showed a V1G unit. The modified Clipper Creek EVSE lets Pepco turn you down to Level 1 charging in case of a power emergency. In case of a personal emergency, however, there’s a red button you can hit to restore Level 2 charge speed.

The big news is the upcoming Crystal City Fathers’ Day Car Show. We’ve had good uptake in prior years; the crowd is tech-savvy and receptive. This year, the Show has placed us back in the main area, not a satellite lot across the street. We have three cars signed up, but could use more volunteers and EVs. It’s this Sunday, 2 pm to 6 in the Crystal City shopping area. Yes, there’s charging nearby. ¬†One possibility was bringing Chip’s dragster, but he has no trailer for it.

We know there are Level 1 charging possibilities at BWI Airport; members discussed the different options. Airport charging is still an unsettled issue. On that subject, Leviton adapters for Level 1 charging were brought up, versus say, Panasonic.

September will be here sooner than you know, and with it National Drive Electric Week. Jeff will host an e-vent at the Alexandria MOM’s on Saturday. Elvia will hold an Annapolis NDEW event, Ron a Frederick e-vent, and Jill a Baltimore e-vent. Like last year, Joyce is looking for EVers for the Poolesville Day e-vent and e-parade on Sept. 19. Since the parade is in the morning, you could be at two NDEW sites that day. Also like last year, the DC site will run on Sunday, Sept. 20. Anyone else planning or proposing an e-vent?

Before September, there will be at least one and likely several 4th of July e-vents. MDVolt is planning their Firecracker Run July 2-4, in the West Virginia panhandle like last year. Various sites and events will be visited along the route.

Jill sent us a BEVI update. 9 interns from 3 institutions are on board for the summer; as discussed, they are working on social media, the MD EV website, and general outreach. They are studying the transit hub concept, other collaborations with municipalities, and EV parts and fabrication.

Charlie mentions that Solar City has offered the club subsidies for installing residential solar. On the topic of clean transportation, he mentions his Appalachian Trail hike is on hiatus to let his knee rest. The Tour of Solar Homes will take place the first weekend of October, but it will be western Maryland, only- DC is taking a hiatus this year. Three key organizers are sitting this one out. However, EVers are more than welcome to participate, either with their solar homes (about half the floor has solar) or by parking their EV at someone’s Tour home. Along with your EV, we have stickers, signs, brochures, shirts, hats, etc., even temporary tattoos.

Rob gave us Tesla news; MDVolt is doing a day trip around Maryland wineries; Charlie gave away his electric lawnmower. Used Tesla S’s are now reaching 50k; Tesla’s JB Straubel gave an area talk. Pat solicited club opinions on the many charging networks, most of which require at least token membership.

Carsten, now a solar installer, mentions that the Tesla Powerwall has been great publicity, and he’s asked about it all the time. It may even be increasing panel sales. However, standard solar panels go down in a blackout, due to the lack of an AC frequency reference. We discussed the possibility of utility support for battery backups, and the use of a small generator to supply that frequency reference. Tesla aside, Costco now has 6V lead-acid batteries for a good price.

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