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

OpenEVSE charging of Roadsters?

Discussion in 'Roadster' started by gregd, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Is anyone using the OpenEVSE to charge their Roadsters? Any issues?

    I'm thinking I should move past using the Mobile Connector for daily charging in the garage, if for no other reason than to save it for when I really need it on the road. The OpenEVSE model 50A Deluxe kit is on sale right now. I'd use it with their J1772 cable, and the CAN-JR adapter that I already have.

    OpenEVSE Kit - 50A Deluxe

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Msjulie

    Msjulie Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2016
    Messages:
    137
    Location:
    San Fran Bay Area
    I charge mine with a juicebox and a can-jr; we got the juicebox for the previous e-car we had. Why wouldn't any J1772 compatible charger basically work if you have the adapter?. Previous owner of my roadster had the mobile S charger but I've not bothered to use it, am I missing something ?
     
  3. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Well, in theory they all should work. But (ascribed to Yogi Berra) "In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not." There's a thread I started over in Technical related to this (Odd charging behavior (seen in logs)) which we appear to have troubleshooted to an incompatibility between the Clipper Creek HCS-40 model charger and at least two of the 2.x Roadsters (mine and one on the East Coast). We've also had reports of some commercial chargers (early Schneider / ChargePro models, for example) that keep tripping the GFI.

    So, standards are great, until they're not. {sigh} Hence, my question. There are some positive reports with the OpenEVSE from a few years ago, but nothing really current, so I thought it would be wise to ask. No pun intended... :)
     
  4. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,387
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    What charger is that? I don't understand your description.

    You should be able to use a J1772 standard charging to charge your Roadster if you have a J1772 adaptor, and you have a CNA JR, so it should work. In theory...
     
  5. thefortunes

    thefortunes Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2013
    Messages:
    359
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    I use an OpenEVSE. No issues.

    When my UMC died I cannibalized the Roadster connector, bought the OpenEVSE kit and power cord. Voila, charging again at 40a.
     
    • Like x 1
  6. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,537
    Location:
    Vermont
    #6 hcsharp, Aug 31, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2016
    I'd like to add Siemens to the list of chargers that are not compatible with the Roadster even though they claim to have tested it with one. Every once in a while I have this conversation:

    NEW CAN JR OWNER: The adapter you just sent me doesn't work!

    ME: What are you using for a charging station?

    NEW CAN JR OWNER: A brand new Siemens unit from Home Cheapo! There's nothing wrong with it cuz it charges my Volt.

    ME: A Volt is not a Roadster. That charger won't work.

    NEW CAN JR OWNER: But Mister Sharp, they have a picture of a Roadster in their brochure!

    ME: Do you believe everything you read in brochures? Home Cheapo has a good return policy. And don't be so cheap! Buy something better next time. Or build it yourself.
     
    • Like x 1
    • Funny x 1
  7. Mark77a

    Mark77a Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2012
    Messages:
    292
    Location:
    Poole, Dorset, UK
  8. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    If you find one of those Tesla J1772 to Roadster connectors cheap (compared to the new list price) such as $350 or so, that would be a good addition to the end of the EVSE or Juicebox charger. I'm running the Emotorwerks Juicebox which is built like a tank, it can charge up to 80 amps as well if I need to do that (70 tops for Roadster since that's the max it can pull). I found a person selling the Roadster cable end of the Clipper Creek Tesla home charger which I scored for $100 bucks and supplied it to Emotorwerks when they built my juicebox. Great company & great support.

    Henry also sells the Roadster connector which you can attach to the end of the cable, but the last time I spoke with him he indicated it costs basically the same as the CAN JR due to the complexity and cost to build one.
     
  9. ecarfan

    ecarfan Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2013
    Messages:
    10,387
    Location:
    San Mateo, CA
    I have one of the Tesla J1772 to Roadster cables that I will sell for $350. I've used it one in the year and a half that I have owned my Roadster. It worked fine, but now that I have a 3.0 battery and a Sharp CAN SR I doubt I will ever use it again.
     
  10. Habious

    Habious Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2014
    Messages:
    410
    Location:
    Springfield, VA
    @gregd, I have a dead / flaky UMC that I'd be willing to part with, if you're looking for a Roadster connector to use on your OpenEVSE project.

    It sometimes works, then faults out if you touch/move the big thingy in the middle of the cable (the thingy with the lights and buttons on it).

    It's not worth much as a charger but, if you want to cannibalize it for parts, I'll let it go for cheap + actual shipping cost.

    If you're interested, make me an offer.

    It's just in the closet taking up space.
     
  11. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    I honestly wouldn't trust that thing out on the road, just look at the failure rates and ask yourself if you're out somewhere where you really need to get a charge and a UMC is you're only means of charging, do you really want it to fail you you out there?

    At least if you're charging at home with the POS and it fails, you're not stuck as long as you have a backup. And even if you didn't have a backup, at least you and your Roadster are home.

    I also had my UMC fail. It's junk!
     
  12. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Good points, though my primary means for charging away from home are Henry's CAN adapters, which I feel are of the highest quality, and connect to the most commonly available outlets. The MC240 would only be used if I needed to connect to a 14-50 plug somewhere. The most likely scenario for that would be if my daughter installs a 14-50 outlet in their garage, AND I go for the 3.0 battery in order to get there. Right now she's just outside my one-way range, so this is a bit of a long shot (pun?)...

    As an alternative to the MC240, I wonder if I kept the OpenEVSE (or whatever I end up with) as a plug-in (vs hardwired), and simply take that with me? It's not that much bigger than the MC240...

    Another reason for dumping the MC240 in daily home use is that it interferes with the home X-10 system (also acknowledged as junk). Curious if any of the other chargers would be better behaved.
     
  13. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    #13 wiztecy, Sep 4, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2016
    Remember, the MC240 is *not* the same as the UMC. The MC240 is not Universal, the 'U' in UMC. Will talk about more later on that.

    The MC240 is bullet proof, I have not yet heard one burning out, I have one and looking for a Roadster connector end to salvage it. It was my dedicated home charger which I used daily for years. Only issue was that the band holding the insulation came loose, insulation pulled through. Cable was ok, tried repairing it with a hose clamp which failed and started cutting into things, sharp edges on the band. The connector end is built like locomotive, but its glued and really a bear to take apart and I totally destroyed mine in doing so.

    The MC240 is what was optional on the 1.5 Roadsters and the only thing better than that is the Roadster Foundry Charger by Martin. That's where the UMC came into play with the pigtail connectors and different amp rated outlets. Tesla used his design with Martin's permission for making the next generation mobile charger, the UMC. The UMC is what Tesla began selling with the 2.0 and are not reliable at all. They're all going to burn up at some point or at least become super flaky.

    I'd ride and trust the MC240 on road trips for sure and it is a very good home charger. There's no need to purchase an EVSE or other charger unless you really are dying to. Instead I'd pick up a Model-S UMC, its small and very versatile. Still by no means built to the quality of the MC240, more like the UMC although I think its a bit better but I wouldn't be using it as a dedicated home charger that's for sure.

    I brought the MC240 for a show and tell at Emotorwerks when they were building Juicebox. Was going to convert it to a J1772 end but they didn't have cables large enough, would have charged but looked silly. So waiting for the Roadster end to try and redeem it back to original. The guys there were impressed with the build quality.
     
  14. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Ok,so here's a quick nit of a question... Does the OpenEVSE require one to push the Start button for each charging session? Specifically, will the car's automatic daily top-off continue to work, or do I have to push the button every day? If there's a power interruption, will it go back to charging? I want to be able to leave the car relatively unattended for periods of time, either in standard or storage mode, and have the charging continue as needed.
     
  15. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Ok, so I'm learning more each day... Very interesting.

    The unit I have is pictured below. Pretty sure it's the MC240, but it does, however, have pigtail adapters. It came with the car, used, so I have no idea of its pedigree. I have one pigtail for 14-50 which came with it, and purchased a 10-30 from the Tesla website to match the outdated outlet that I have here at the house. What you wrote suggests that the MC240 doesn't have pigtail options... so I'm a little confused. I have the MC240, right? If so, and if that's the bullet-proof model, then that kind of changes the situation a bit... Thanks!

    CAM00651.jpg CAM00652.jpg
     
  16. wiztecy

    wiztecy Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2012
    Messages:
    2,722
    Location:
    Santa Cruz, California, United States
    #16 wiztecy, Sep 4, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2016
    What you have pictured above is actually the crappy UMC. The MC240 has a fixed NEMA 14-50 connector, no pigtail, and is seen in the picture below:

    [​IMG]

    It's that first grey box connected to the Roadster, says TESLA in red across the top.
     
  17. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Ok, thank you for clarifying! The thing does say "mobile connector" under the big "240" lettering, and not knowing that there were two different products, hence the assumption that it was a MC240... As I said, learn stuff every day on this forum!

    So, back to Plan A (replacing it before it fails)... Do you happen to know how EVSEs with "Start" buttons behave? That's probably the next nit to resolve.
     
  18. CSPHD

    CSPHD Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2014
    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    Alabama
    The button on the OpenEVSE is for navigating the menu options. The car starts the charging procedure by manipulating the pilot signal.
     
  19. gregd

    gregd Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2014
    Messages:
    584
    Cool! Thanks.

    Any clue why they labeled it "Start" (vs, say, "Menu")?
     
  20. hcsharp

    hcsharp Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,537
    Location:
    Vermont
    If you search the forums you'll read about lots of MC240s failing. They may have been a little better than the UMC but not by much. They have a GFI part that fails after a while. They used the small relay in the GFI unit to energize the connector.
     

Share This Page