TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

Into the heart of (supercharger) darkness.

Discussion in 'Model S' started by flyeyes, Jun 29, 2015.

  1. flyeyes

    flyeyes Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2015
    Messages:
    90
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    #1 flyeyes, Jun 29, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2015
    This won't be terribly informative for most long time owners, but I thought I'd share my weekend trip into the very epicenter of the Great Southern Supercharger Desert over the weekend.

    I've had an 85D for about two months, on 19" wheels.

    I live in Memphis, which is the largest (at least until the Nashville Supercharger opens hopefully in the next day or so) metropolitan area in the U.S. which isn't within range of a supercharger. El Paso, Texas will assume that honor I believe when Nashville opens.

    I've made the trip to Nashville, which is straightforward, but I wouldn't want to do it in very cold or bad weather, or at the speeds I might have used during my largely misspent youth.

    To my west, though, is the absolute core of the desert. Just look at the coverage circles on the Teslamotors website. Even Plugshare.com is no help in the region around Heber Springs, AR.

    Heber Springs is a small resort/tourist town next to the Greers Ferry Dam, which annually generates almost 200 Gigawatts of renewable electricity. My mission was to drive to Heber Springs, and find some way to get enough of the power into my Tesla to get me safely home.

    My brother has a house in Heber, but I was unable to find any public charging before I left, and his house has all the 220 circuits on the opposite side and uphill from the driveway. Steep terrain made charging at his house unfeasible. fortunately, His down the hill neighbor graciously allowed the use of her 30 amp dryer circuit. Armed with a cell phone photo of the outlet I went to Home Depot and cobbled up an adaptor, which I tested on my own dryer circuit before leaving.

    It took 161 road miles at an average of 55-60 mph with a brisk crosswind and mild temps. Most of the driving was on rural 2-lane roads, with some stretches of 4-lane interstate and some stretches of twisty mountain roads with switchbacks. This consumed a little over 170 rated miles over about 3 hours.

    The dryer circuit worked well, if a little slowly at 18 m/hr of charge. I saw several RV parks that would have been good emergency backups, but none were convenient to my destination. We charged for about 5 hours while boating and going out to eat.

    we launched for home with 196 rated miles, and arrived with just over 30 (11%). Conditions on the return were close to ideal, with mild temp around 70, light traffic, and light winds. We average a little faster, mostly between 60 and 65 coming home.

    As many others have said, the Model S is an excellent road car, although the charging infrastructure still requires more planning than an ICE trip.

    We ate at the Request Rejected, which I think would be an excellent site for a destination charger. If you are inclined and live within a few hundred mile of north central Arkansas, please hit the link and see if it's someplace you might visit in your Tesla. If so send them an email, or answer this thread or PM me so I can use it to bolster my case as I try to convince them (and Tesla) to put in a HPWC.

    The link should be redappleinn followed by a dot com. I suspect it got auto moderated as "advertising" but my intent here is more to bolster support for a destination charger. I have no connection the the Red Apple Inn other than as a semi regular customer...
     
  2. ahurst

    ahurst Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2013
    Messages:
    225
    Location:
    Denver
    Absolutely, we need more charging opportunities, hopefully a SC, in Arkansas.
    I will soon move back there and my reluctance to buying right now is distance from a Service Center and lack of SC's or even destination charging.
    Thanks for the post.
     
  3. TomServo

    TomServo Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2014
    Messages:
    202
    Location:
    Belleville IL
    My wife's family lives in Mountain View, when we last visited with my Volt we stayed at a Quality Inn inn Heber Springs and they allowed me to plug into an outdoor 120V outlet. It managed about 4 MPH, that filled my Volt over night but would do little with a Tesla. At my in-laws even reducing my EVSE to 8 amps I kept tripping the breaker. Thank god I had the gas generator to get us back to Heber Springs.

    This part of the country is in desperate need of a SC and other charging options.
     
  4. KJD

    KJD Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2013
    Messages:
    628
    Location:
    SLC, UT
    Sounds like you need to put one of these in the back of your car for next time.
    Amazon.com: Camco 55195 50 AMP 30 Extension Cord with PowerGrip Handle: Automotive
     
  5. flyeyes

    flyeyes Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2015
    Messages:
    90
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
  6. KJD

    KJD Member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2013
    Messages:
    628
    Location:
    SLC, UT
  7. Moonwick

    Moonwick Member

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2014
    Messages:
    52
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Oooof. 50' of 6/3 + 8/1 would be a monster to deal with. My solution for long runs has been to build my own 50' NEMA 5-20 extension cord out of 12/3 SJOOW which is reasonably flexible and coils up quite nicely, which I then will plug into a 10-30 or 14-30 to 5-20 adapter I've made (marked TESLA ONLY) and then use the 5-20 plugtip on the UMC to charge at 240/16A. It doesn't give me the full 24A of a dryer outlet, but it does fit far more comfortably into the frunk. :D
     
  8. mattmass

    mattmass Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2014
    Messages:
    119
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Huh - that's a great idea. I hadn't ever thought of making a 14-30P to 5-20R extension. The trade-off of bulk/weight/length for charging speed is probably really handy in some situations.
     

Share This Page