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

Solving a problem: Locking public J-1772 to your Model S during charging

Discussion in 'Tesla Parts for Sale' started by Babylonfive, Mar 16, 2013.

  1. Babylonfive

    Babylonfive Power12

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Messages:
    721
    Location:
    Cedar Park (Austin), Texas
    #1 Babylonfive, Mar 16, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2013
    I've been working on the problem of J-1772 chargers being unplugged randomly during charging (either to 'borrow' an existing Chargepoint/Blink charge session, or simple removal whether malicious or innocent). The lock mechanism built into the Tesla charging wand and J-1772 converter imply the design intent to capture any charging hardware until the car and charging system are both 'unlocked'. Previous ideas for those who want to lock their J-1772 charging cable include a tiny lock, inserted into the hook release actuator; but not all J-1772 charging cables have that hole and the added inconvenience of a new key, keeping track of the lock, etc. reduce the effectiveness of that solution.

    J1772lockhole.jpg
    J-1772 locking hole on one type :confused:

    So, I designed a solution. I hope the story won't be interpreted as too much of an advertisement.

    My thought process started with the converter and how it locks -- it's clear that the converter is meant to stay connected to the car during charging, and that if there was a magic way to extend that lock to the charging handle, they would have. I then looked to find a way to capture the entire charging handle to the car, with a captured cable... finally, I returned to how the tiny-lock-through-the-hole works - it keeps the locking pawl from disengaging from the slot on the converter. That design looked a bit like a loop of cable, one end permanent and one removable end - but, I was worried it would only work with handle having the 'hole', and would possible bang around against the paint. Again, the design goals were a captured system that wouldn't easily be lost, but would work with all charging system brands (note the lock hooks are different between brands).

    All my solutions utilize the fact that the converter locks to the car. The key is creating something that locks the J-1772 handle to the converter by some mechanical means that works with the existing lock -- one way is to create a sleeve that fits over the 'Tesla' side of the converter and is captured with the converter when locked, but is easily slid off that side when unlocked.

    This is how CapturePro works - it slides over the end of the converter from the car side and can't be removed. The exterior part of it clamps the the locking hook to the converter slot, with a selectable series of clamping slops that are chosen to match the handle style. Specific slots work best for certain chargers (#6 is great for Chargepoint in my area), but the idea is to simply pick the best one each time -- it's an easy process.

    SmallCP1Illustration.jpg

    You use it like this: Unlock the charging door, start the charging session (ex: Blink or Chargepoint), and approach the car with charging handle and converter in hand -- the converter would have the CapturePro slid loosely over the end; clip the Tesla converter to the J-1772 handle, as you might normally do; slide the CapturePro toward the handle halfway, then twist it to align the best blocking slot to the already locked hook; now, finalize the connection by sliding the CapturePro over the hook, and firmly pressing it as far as it will go. This complete arrangement of charging handle, converter and CapturePro is now inserted into the Model S charging slot, same as the charging handle and converter were previously used. Note that now, because the converter is locked to the car and the charging handle is locked to the converter - the full arrangement is locked (transitive property of mechanical interlocks?).

    matingdiagram1.jpg mated-small.jpg

    Once you are done (charging complete or otherwise) you unlock the car and unlock the charging port exactly as you always have, and pull the entire arrangement from the car. Then, before you can use the unlock thumb-button on the handle to separate the charger from the converter, you simply pull back the CapturePro slightly from the locking hook (~1 inch/2.5 centimeters of motion). From that point on everything works the same way - because the CapturePro slides onto the converter, it's easy to store them together.

    Some features: easily selectable locking height works for all known charging handle hooks - only comes into contact with the converter mechanically; has no loose pieces, cables, keys; light and small; and it's strong, but removable via cutting tools if absolutely necessary. I am planning to sell this product from a web site, soon to be available - I'd like not to abuse my involvement with the club forum, but I'd like to make sure this is available to those who want it - I look to the admins to help me on this balance.

    Here's the website showing the device: power12.retailrapp.com

    Feel free to respond with questions or suggestions to me here by private message, by email or to the contact shown on the website.

    View attachment 18877

    CP1b-render1-small.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

  2. efxjim

    efxjim Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    Messages:
    222
    Location:
    Glendale, CA
    Very elegant solution!
     
  3. Bipo

    Bipo Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Spain
    Brilliant idea!
     
  4. rlpm

    rlpm S P85 | Sig X _P90D_

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2012
    Messages:
    235
    Location:
    Albuquerque, NM
    Nice! Are you going to CNC these out of something, create an injection mold, or 3D print them?
    Or maybe you could sell the rights to Tesla & put your name on the patent?
     
  5. Thumper

    Thumper Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2011
    Messages:
    579
    Location:
    Corvallis, OR
    Nice elegant design. If not too expensive, I'll buy one. Good luck!
     
  6. Babylonfive

    Babylonfive Power12

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Messages:
    721
    Location:
    Cedar Park (Austin), Texas
    This doesn't seem terribly patentable to me, but perhaps I'm wrong.

    My plan is to 3D print them out of strong plastic, or perhaps metal, and I've chosen that process mostly because I expect the volume on these to be fairly low - I do look forward to seeing how many folks might be interested.

    I expect to complete the web site very soon, and then I can have folks reserve/order so I can get a count. I'd like to injection mold them, but the mold costs are pretty high - hard to amortize.

    Thanks for the kind feedback.

    David
     
  7. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    2,422
    Location:
    WY
    The need for this is puzzling:

    Gas Station scenario: Motorist starts pumping fuel at neighboring pump, but immediately (and illegally) goes inside the store, leaving you to nanny the situation (without asking!). So you stop your pump which had just started, and hang up the hose. Then you stop the Motorist's pump and begin filling your car with it. Taking as much free gas as you dare, you then return hose to Motorist's car, leaving the pump OFF. When Motorist finally gets back, you are gone and he sees a 'normal' amount of gallons delivered. So probably is unconcerned.

    EVSE scenario: Replicating the above would seem difficult if we assume the EVSE would close out the sale as soon as STOPed or disconnected, there being no need to top up the battery like one does a gas tank. More likely would be that your charging stopped normally, quicker than you guessed it would, and someone needed a charge in your absence. In that case the EVSE would begin a new credit card authorization to begin charging. To accommodate this scenario Model_S allows the plug to be removed but locks the J1772 adapter (since you own it).

    Never seen a CP/Blink EVSE so what am I missing here? Locking their equipment to your car would seem likely to cause issues.
    --
     
  8. Odenator

    Odenator P2607

    Joined:
    May 2, 2011
    Messages:
    334
    Location:
    Olympia, WA
    Very interesting design and concept. If this also helps to remove the J1772 plug and Tesla adaptor as one unit after charging, then I would be VERY interested in ordering one.
     
  9. harry

    harry Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    138
    Location:
    Prince Edward Island & Wisconsin
    Perhaps. as wycolo suggests, this is a solution looking for a problem, but somehow I don't think so. I can envision lots of scenarios in which you could come back to your car to find the charging cable disconnected. It could happen with free charging stations like the Sun Country units well as with the pay stations. Kids might think it was great fun to disconnect an EV, an intervening EV charging episode might appropriate the use of the charger in desperate (by their definition) circumstances, whatever... In any event, I would like to know that when I returned to my car the charging had proceeded as I expected and I had the capacity I needed. Of course, one could check through the phone app repeatedly during the charging session, but what a hassle.

    I do have a specific question, however. Will the flange of this unit clear the body of the car and the open reflector that covers the port? The Model S port is a little recessed, and if the CapturePro rubbed against the body and scuffed the paint it would be a real problem. If there is safe clearance, however, I'd be in line for one!
     
  10. tezco

    tezco Sig P85

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Messages:
    818
    Location:
    Colorado
    I charge at some facilities that charge by the hour, so you don't want someone to pull the plug, before you get your money's worth.
     
  11. Babylonfive

    Babylonfive Power12

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Messages:
    721
    Location:
    Cedar Park (Austin), Texas
    Wycolo: your assumptions about how the public charging stations work is not correct. You enable the charging by logging in with your card, and you end your session with the card and/or when you place the charging handle back into the station. You can stop charging and re-start charging with the same card (account) active, and thus one person with access to the handle could take power that belongs to someone else. You return to find the hose either on the ground, in the station, or in another car.

    This is not the only reason that these get disconnected - sometimes just people with nothing better to do,... and never forget the anti-EV person.

    I'd appreciate a counter-view from someone with lots of public charging experience, and especially those who have had their charging interrupted by someone else, either on purpose or accidentally.

     
  12. jomo25

    jomo25 P4398

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2012
    Messages:
    1,938
    Location:
    Tempe, AZ
    #12 jomo25, Mar 16, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2013
    Also, if I recall, your J1772 adapter is at risk of being stolen also if you can't lock the J1772 nozzle to the car/adapter. (I don't have my MS yet, so I can't say for certain, this is just what I recall reading)

    At first, I was going to reply that if the reason I stated above is the only reason for this device, then perhaps the better solution is for Tesla to alter the algorithm so the adapter stays locked into the charge port on the car regardless of whether the J1772 nozzle is removed or not.

    But if the other (and according to the OP's post) and original intent is to prevent people from stopping your charging session prematurely, then this device does serve that purpose. And until Tesla changes their locking algorithm for the adapter when it's being used, it will prevent its loss as well.

    Obviously you put a lot of thought and effort into this. It sounds like it would work. I think you've planned it to work with both Chargepoint and Blink nozzles, which are the lion's share of shared J1772s in the wild. (Are there others similarly widespread out there? And would this work for them as well?)

    So, I'd consider one, depending on the price. I will be using my J1772 adapter heavily and will rely on it since I plan to install a GE Wattstation so I can use it for both my MS and Volt. So, losing the adapter would be painful for me.
     
  13. Babylonfive

    Babylonfive Power12

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Messages:
    721
    Location:
    Cedar Park (Austin), Texas
    No, I don't think that's right. The adapter is always safe, as it's the part that's locked by the car. Have a look at the adapter and you'll see a notch (same on your Universal charger at home) that captures when you hear that 'clunk'.

    So, the car part is handled by Tesla - locking the J-1772 to the car (by locking it to the locked adapter) is what the CapturePro does.

     
  14. jomo25

    jomo25 P4398

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2012
    Messages:
    1,938
    Location:
    Tempe, AZ
    Again, I dont have an MS yet, so I cant say for certain. I just recall reading that the adapter does lock. But if you stop the charging (by removing the J1772 nozzle or stopping charge) that there is a 10 second or so period where the lock releases, allowing the adapter to be disconnected from the car. Is this not the case?
     
  15. Babylonfive

    Babylonfive Power12

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Messages:
    721
    Location:
    Cedar Park (Austin), Texas
    If that were true, I'd certainly like to know. I'll have to go check it out - thanks for the pointer.
     
  16. jomo25

    jomo25 P4398

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2012
    Messages:
    1,938
    Location:
    Tempe, AZ
    When you pull the J1772 nozzle out after a normal charge using the adapter, does the adapter stay in the port or does it come out with the nozzle? If it stays in, does it actually remain locked?

    I recall also that people were potentially forgetting their adapters since it came out with the J1772 nozzle. This would imply it comes out and isn't necessarily locked in, but perhaps that was only after manually stopping the charge from inside or something.

    And I know they changed the adapter design about 2 months ago. So maybe it was an issue with the old design only...

    Would love to say I could go to my garage and test it out. But alas, I'm still waiting for a Delivery button.
     
  17. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2012
    Messages:
    12,743
    Location:
    Texas
    The other question is: Is it better to be able to pull it out and risk no charge or some stolen electrons, or is it better to lock them and then incur damage when the perp tries to pry off the connector?
     
  18. dsm363

    dsm363 Roadster + Sig Model S

    Joined:
    May 17, 2009
    Messages:
    18,235
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    I'm pretty sure the adapter stays locked into the port until the doors are unlocked with the key fob or mobile app but someone will have to check.
     
  19. Babylonfive

    Babylonfive Power12

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2011
    Messages:
    721
    Location:
    Cedar Park (Austin), Texas
    i
    i will check.
     
  20. Puyallup Bill

    Puyallup Bill Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2012
    Messages:
    606
    Location:
    Puyallup WA
    WA state is getting close to enacting a provision that will levy a $140 fine if a vehicle is in a designated EV charging spot without being electrically connected. Doesn't say charging must be active, but connected.
     

Share This Page