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Advice: My first road trip. Toronto, Chicago, La Crosse, Green Bay, Minocqua, return.

Discussion in 'Model S' started by Chrisizzle, Feb 20, 2015.

  1. Chrisizzle

    Chrisizzle Member

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2014
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    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, canada
    As a photographer and video guy, preparing equipment for air travel adds many hours in packing, checking bags and clearing customs. I rationalized the purchase of the Tesla by saying I'd use it for any location within a days drive. So, I will be driving to a multi-day, multi-location shoot around Wisconsin with my Model S85 on Monday.

    1) With the Comber Ontario Supercharger opening 'soon', getting out of Canada could be an adventure with negative temperatures and extra cargo weight. I'd like any advice from Woodstock, Ontario to Maumee or Angola. I assume I go slow with no heat and draft the trucks? Should I stop in London for an hour just to get a little extra?

    2) Chicago IL and La Crosse WI are easy with Superchargers near by.

    3) Green Bay is hours from a Supercharger but, I booked the Aloft Hotel that has a Tesla plug. That should be fine and there are generic chargers around the city for back up.

    4) Minocqua is the gamble. It is 110km (70miles) from the nearest charger in Wausau. I am debating whether I need to rent an ICE for this part.
    - I booked the Wausau Marriott which has a Tesla plug. Two car dealerships could be backups (according to Plugshare) but, dealer plugs are subject to operating hours and the manager's temperament.
    - I hope to carry through to Chicago at the end of the work day but the Minocqua round trip may be a full battery drain right there.

    5) Hopefully, the Comber Supercharger will be open for my return to Toronto next Friday.

    6) Assuming Superchargers only, what extra time should I calculate on my journey. For example: If Google Maps estimates 14-hours, what would that equal in a Tesla with charge stops?

    Love to hear any thoughts.
     
  2. SmartElectric

    SmartElectric Active Member

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    1,077
    Location:
    Toronto,Canada
    Have you looked at :
    EV Trip Planner

    In terms of where to stop outside of superchargers, you may want to use this in the car:
    PlugShare - EV Charging Station Map - Find the nearest location to charge your electric car!

    Personally, I never travel more than 100km in my Smart ED in a day, so I'm not much help otherwise. ;-)
     
  3. RiverBrick

    RiverBrick Active Member

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    Québec
    #3 RiverBrick, Feb 20, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015
    I'm not familiar with London's charging stations, but the 70A Suncountry one in Chatham-Kent is a good stop. I got 238V there, for 16.5 kW. Most public stations only offer ~205V, so there's a difference in speed of almost 20%. 1.5 hours at 16.5kW should give you more than enough of a buffer to make Maumee from Woodstock.

    If Chatham-Kent is unavailable, then try the 70A Suncountry at the Comfort Inn in Windsor. Note that I am giving the actual amps, but Suncountry/Clipper Creek give the rating of the circuit, so for 70A continuous, they name the station CS90.

    Doug's blog is an excellent reference on cold weather driving. I'm not a big fan of drafting, though. I'd rather arrive a little later than get hit with the sand and other debris that trucks kick up.

    http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/entry.php/194-Cold-Weather-Driving
     
  4. Jdcleary

    Jdcleary Member

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    Location:
    Bella Vista, AR
    I was born and raised in NE Wisconsin so know the state quite well. I also took a trip from our home in Arkansas to Niagara-on-the-lake last summer and then drove north to “Sault Ste. Marie and entered upper Michigan and NE Wisconsin to visit our children. Needless to say we didn’t have any superchargers so it required overnight stays in Parry Sound, Sault Ste. Marie and Florence, WI. With a meal time charge in Blind River.

    I don’t know your agenda but based on what you said I will assume you wish to drive about 657 miles to Green Bay and charge at the Aloft. (I plan on charging there in June). This will be a long day, perhaps 9 hours of driving and Supercharger stops in Maumee (211 miles), Mishawaka, IN (139) and Pleasant Prairie, WI (153). Figure 2.5 hours of charging.
    With a full charge the next day you can drive to Minocqua (170 miles) stopping at the Marriott in Wausau for 1-2 hour charge (catch a meal while waiting) and you will have enough juice to get back from Minocqua.

    From Minocqua you can reach Madison and the superchargers for your trip home.

    Good Luck and have a safe trip.
    Jack
     
  5. paulwesterberg

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2014
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    Location:
    Madison, WI
    I was just in Minocqua to xc skiing and noted the lack of EV chargers. My 85D won't arrive till april, but I intend to use it for all of our longer trips as long as charging opportunities are reasonable. Many of the hotels have 110v outlets outside for engine block heaters you may be able to use one of these to get a slight bump. There are also a number of RV parks in the area that might be helpful, some have cabins to rent.

    I contacted the Minocqua Chamber of Commerce([email protected]) to see if there were any resorts with chargers, but they were not much help. I doubt there are many locals with plug-ins. The Chevy dealer in Minocqua used to have a few Volts parked out front, but they stopped selling it a few years ago.

    There is a supercharger scheduled for Wausau in 2015, and the Green Bay Supercharger is rumored to be installed this spring but that likely won't help you.
     
  6. William13

    William13 Member

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    Aloft in Green Bay has one 40 amp Tesla charger. First come first served. The hotel ambiance is upscale.
     
  7. Chrisizzle

    Chrisizzle Member

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    Toronto, Ontario, canada
    I was scheduled to be in the Aloft at this very moment.

    Unfortunately, my 12V battery had other ideas. The car is stalled and won't start. I am stranded at another hotel. Tesla Chicago is sending a flatbed with a loaner and also picking up mine for repairs.
     
  8. SmartElectric

    SmartElectric Active Member

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    Doh! Sorry to hear that. Given that you have a Canadian Model S, and the loaner is American, what is the plan when you need to head back to Canada if your car isn't fixed?
     
  9. Chrisizzle

    Chrisizzle Member

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    Location:
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    First, my work colleagues were much impressed that Tesla sent a brand new car as a loaner on a flatbed truck from Chicago to Green Bay at midnight and load mine for service. Just estimating the cost of the round trip tow must be over $1,000. Add to that, they are prepared to do it all over again to return my now repaired car. I will be saving them the trouble by passing through Chicago.


    So, to answer your question, I will have my car back by end of day. Yay!
     
  10. islandbayy

    islandbayy Active Member

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    Which service center? Highland Park? If you need a top off on the way, feel free to stop in Milwaukee and use my HPWC or 14-50.
     
  11. paulwesterberg

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    As a shareholder, and soon to be owner, I hope that they build a service center in Wisconsin to reduce the need to haul vehicles halfway across the state.
     
  12. islandbayy

    islandbayy Active Member

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    service center yes. I think Madison or Milwaukee, but Milwaukee is close to highland park (60 miles). tesla can't sell in this state yet due to dealer laws.
     

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