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Scotland Roadtrip: feasible?

Discussion in 'The UK and Ireland' started by timidri, Jul 2, 2017.

  1. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Dear Forum,

    We are planning a road trip from The Netherlands to England, Scotland and Wales in the second half of August. The area south of Edinburgh seems to be well covered with Superchargers, but we also would like to do a Scotland tour: Edinburgh - Oban - Isle of Mull - Fort Willam - Isle of Skye - Inverness - Dundee. I have subscribed ChargeYourCar (ChargeYourCar). Do you have any advice about charging (is it feasible to do this Scotland trip?) and B&B (where to find and how to book)?

    Thank you very much in advance!

    KR
    Dimitri
     
  2. DJP31

    DJP31 Member

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    I haven't done trip myself but plenty of others have and say it can be done but a CHAdeMO adapter is vital.
     
  3. cezdoc

    cezdoc Member

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    Scottish road trips are popular with Tesla owners (actually I've found Wales is more difficult as there are far fewer rapid chargers available if you travel away from the Supercharger network!). Make sure you have a CHAdeMO adapter (unless you want to regularly wait 1/2 day for the car to charge up); if you don't have one it may be possible to borrow/rent one. If you need to do this let me know as I know of a couple of forum members in the Edinburgh area who may be able to help.

    The ChargePlace Scotland network, which is run by ChargeYourCar, is extensive and mostly free, so your CYC subscription will allow you to charge all over Scotland. Live charger status is available at Charge Place Scotland. PlugShare also seems to be widely used by Scottish EV drivers (I find PlugShare and Zap-Map cover pretty much everything). This is useful for local knowledge, helping you to find a chargepoint, flagging up points that are regularly ICE'd or slow/offline (e.g. I think the rapids on Skye are not able to run at full power).

    Another big help would be a UK 3-pin plug adapter for overnight charging from a domestic socket. Many places will have a socket which can be reached with a heavy duty extension cable, but be careful if using an adapter on the end of a schuko plug as it needs to be safe to use with a steady 10A current going through it (many aren't rated to do this).

    For B&B's there are a few listed under Tesla's Destination Charging scheme, but other than that try www.visitscotland.com or your favourite online booking tool (e.g. booking.com)! I usually just book and telephone afterwards to see if they have any sockets I can use overnight - if not then there is pretty much guaranteed to be a public charger nearby which can be used instead.
     
  4. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Active Member

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    Fully Charged didn't seem to have any trouble with a S 100D ... might not be enough justification to persuade a spouse that you need a upgrade though!

     
  5. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Thanks a lot everyone for taking time to write up this valuable information. We are definitely taking a CHAdeMO adapter with us. Will also order a 3-pin plug. Looking forward to this exciting adventure!
     
  6. DeeGee

    DeeGee New Member

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    Dimitri - I've just done most of Scotland a couple of weeks back. All the chargers were working perfectly, the only thing i would advise is getting a RFID card if you have time.

    Yes you can start the charge with the CYC app, which is fine in the bigger towns and built up areas.
    But in the likes of Portree (Isle of skye), they only have 2G mobile coverage, so you wont have data to use the CYC app. I had to walk up into town and use the free WiFi in one of the pubs to start the charge!

    Not sure if you are planning on using any campsites? But if you do, they all use 16a commando sockets, you'll just need a commando to schuko socket lead, they are easily available on the web.

    Give me a nudge if you need any pointers.

    Enjoy your trip, Scotland and particularly Skye is stunning!
     
  7. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Hi DeeGee,

    Good to know charging is working well in Scotland! I have ordered and received the CYC card so I guess I'm all set. Did you encounter any broken / dysfunctional chargers? I see that Zap-Map has reasonably up to date info on that, did you also use that app?

    We were not planning using campsites, we will try to stick to B&Bs. What do campsites look like, do you use a tent, sleep in the car or some other way of spending the night?

    I am still trying to find a 10A UK 3-pin adapter to a Schuko 25 meter cable I have in case I need to charge from a normal outlet, but I don't seem to find them online. What is a common name by which these beasts are sold?

    Thanks again,

    Dimitri
     
  8. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Active Member

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    Doesn't look like they have quite what you want, but my extension leads came from here:

    Adaptors & Splitters

    they have various "bits" that you might be able to make your own adaptor from

    I have a long 13-AMP extension, but I also need to buy / carry a Type-2-to-Type-2 extension, so I probably should have made a short 13-AMP to Type-2 adaptor, and then got a long Type-2-to-Type-2 extension cable - maybe that would do you?

    Or get/borrow the Tesla 13-AMP adaptor for the UMC cable?
     
  9. arg

    arg Supporting Member

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    I don't think they are widely sold - there's any number of "travel adapters" which will notionally convert a Schuko to UK 13A plug, but these are usually just about good enough to charge an iPhone and completely unsafe at car-charging powers. What you want is a piece of cable with a 13A plug one end and a Schuko socket at the other; it's relatively easy to make one up from good quality parts.

    If you want to go with off-the-shelf stuff, getting two adapters so that you go via 16A blue commando is probably a reasonable option: these are sold in huge numbers for caravan use and are usually robust enough for EV charging; as an extra benefit, you now have the cable to charge at a campsite or any other location that has commando sockets.

    Something like these two:

    PowerMaster 818738 Fly Lead Converter 13A Plug to 16A Socket: Amazon.co.uk: DIY & Tools
    PMASTER 856728 16A CEE 240V Plug to 16A Schuko Socket Fly Lead Co240V 3-Pin: Amazon.co.uk: Kitchen & Home
     
  10. arg

    arg Supporting Member

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    There's no such thing as a type2-type2 extension: the plugs are explicitly designed to make them not work as extension cables, since this would bypass some of the safety features. The pilot pins are made deliberately shorter in the free plugs compared to the panel/car-mount ones so that they don't make contact.

    Admittedly some people have attacked standard cables with a hacksaw to make them work as extensions, and a few places sell dodgy cables which don't conform to standards, but they are not supposed to exist.
     
  11. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Active Member

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    Sorry, don't know what I was thinking of when I wrote that - I was meaning a regular Commando extension lead plus a short 13-AMP adaptor.
     
  12. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Thanks, I may go for the commando plugs, or, alternatively, I found this (in Dutch but should be reasonably intelligible :) ) : kabelshop.nl - 13A, I think should be fine?
     
  13. DeeGee

    DeeGee New Member

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  14. DeeGee

    DeeGee New Member

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    Sorry, no idea what went wrong with last post!

    Dimitri - All charge points on the CYC app are up to date and working, I did come across a couple of points on zap map that are installed but not operational (Broadford & Uig on Skye), fortunately CYC has the sense to exclude them from their map.

    Yes you usually need a tent for the campsites! But the Glen Nevis campsite in Fort William has Caravans and camping pods available. It's very clean and a well equipped site. Stick to B&B's if its easier for you but they book up quickly so plan ahead whenever possible.
     
  15. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Glen Nevis looks really good, we like the pods! Do you know if we can charge the car there overnight?
     
  16. DeeGee

    DeeGee New Member

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    You certainly can, they were really helpful and happy for me to charge the car.
    Although, if you are staying in a pod they all have power so you can just use a plug inside. You may need an extension lead. They pods book up very quickly so may be worth checking availability sooner rather than later.
    IMG_8262.JPG IMG_8260.JPG
     
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  17. cezdoc

    cezdoc Member

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    I am no expert (arg might have a wise opinion on this?) but as it looks solid, has an earth pin, and is rated for 13A, it should work okay. Personally I would watch it carefully for the first 30 minutes or so (see if it is getting hot, smelling, etc!). Also if the socket is outdoors it will have a hinged cover and the adapter will stop the cover closing fully which might be an issue if there is heavy rain (remember, you're going to visit the west coast of Scotland!).

    Another idea is to look at www.xavelec.co.uk. I haven't used it but it was set up by one of the UK Tesla owners (on the UK Facebook Group) and gets good reviews. He travels regularly in Europe and makes custom cables so may be able to advise on the best/safest options for coming to the UK.
     
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  18. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Hi,

    I am working on the UK Roadtrip itinerary and I see something strange happening. When I plan a route from - say - Leyland south to the
    Charnock Richard Supercharger with Google Maps, it creates a detour, going all the way to the crossing of M6 and A5209 and then coming back, see this map. When I zoom in, I see normal motorway exits from both sides near the Supercharger. Does anyone knows if this is just an error in Google Maps?

    Thanks!

    Dimitri
     
  19. timidri

    timidri Member

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    Another question: does anyone know of existence of a KML / CSV file of all CYC chargepoints in the UK? I have integrated all UK Superchargers on my itinerary Google Maps but it would be cool to also have the Chademo/Type2 charge points for easy navigation and improvising. Thanks.
     
  20. WannabeOwner

    WannabeOwner Active Member

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    Charnock Richard supercharger is at the services only on the Northbound side of the road I'm afraid. So the route takes you South to the next junction, then back up North to get to the Northbound services, and when you leave there you will have no option to go North again, all the way back to Leyland :(

    I was going to suggest PlugShare but that doesn't appear to have any CYC points on it? Even then, not sure you could get an Export File easily.

    Apologies for probably stating the obvious, but I presume you are familiar with

    EV Trip Planner
    A Better Routeplanner

    but they will only help with journeys between Superchargers
     

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