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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2015 1:11 am 
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Location: San Francisco, CA
Quote:
its carbon footprint is probably half that of a 12 MPG truck.

Its carbon dioxide footprint? Sure. Carbon monoxide footprint? Oh no. Excess CO2 is giving us all enough trouble, but the CO and HCs this engine is spewing without a catalytic are undoubtably worse. The net pollution from running that engine part time is almost definitely greater than the net pollution an ICE RAV4 would create covering the same number of total miles.

Quote:
my point was to question the assertion that it was unsafe.

An unsecured/unclamped fuel line slung over the frame that looks like it's about to separate and spray gas all over the roadway. Uninsulated wiring open to the elements on the 40A relays. Translucent plastic gas cans exposed to direct sunlight. The crankcase hose disconnected in a way that spews oil vapors. Zero protection for any of this from a rear-end or side collision.

Y'all are trolling, right?

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:08 am 
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Location: Long Beach, CA
eschatfische wrote:
Quote:
its carbon footprint is probably half that of a 12 MPG truck.

Its carbon dioxide footprint? Sure. Carbon monoxide footprint? Oh no. Excess CO2 is giving us all enough trouble, but the CO and HCs this engine is spewing without a catalytic are undoubtably worse. The net pollution from running that engine part time is almost definitely greater than the net pollution an ICE RAV4 would create covering the same number of total miles.

Exactly and the intended point of my previous post. That 1400 mile round trip he made probably put out the equivalent pollution of a 140,000 miles in a modern car. I know some people aren't into the EV thing to reduce air pollution, but this is crazy. In one trip you've almost completely negated any benefit air pollution wise to owning an EV.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2015 7:32 am 
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Posts: 117
Ok, I've reconsidered. You are right. The pusher trailer is a bad idea.

Let's all sit here and wait for someone to build an electric highway. When they do, I'm sure it will go exactly where we want to go. And surely they will build enough charging stations that we don't have to wait for hours. Oh...wait..we don't have DCQC....well, we will have to wait hours no matter what!!! It will be a good thing...the wide open desert won't have to suffer the pollution of a VW engine running for 1000 miles. We can wait around for hours breathing clean air!!!

And another million people won't buy electric cars because their "what if I want to go to Las Vegas" argument will continue to be valid.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:59 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2012 10:55 pm
Posts: 606
eschatfische wrote:
That range extender certainly does look dangerous, though, and more than that, the pollutants it spews and the gas that it drinks make it anathema to electric vehicle enthusiasts.


I think my friend's 1965 Ford Mustang big block is more polluting while driving just his old timer vs the rav4ev & trailerpusher.
What about all those Ford F250/350 diesels that run around.
Heavy weights, big engines and when I am around it feels like someone is choking me, can't get air.
But that is all legal and so no-one cares ...

Quote:
I seriously doubt that thing's any greener than renting a hybrid or even just putting the RAV on a flatbed.


In this case his EV needed maintenance in CA, so putting it on a flatbed would have been only option.
I doubt it would do 22-23 miles per gallon, although probably less HC output than the trailerpusher.

BTW: I drove this combo of rav4ev & trailer the other day, and I am still amazed by how simple & effective it is.
It is not something that everyone could/would like to use. But it gets the job done.
If I would build something like that, I would make it different, would take years and a lot more $$$$ than this setup.
Imho, this is brilliant because of it's simplicity and low overhead.

Thanks Hugh, you inspired me a lot !

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:43 am 
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Location: Long Beach, CA
Well to start off with I am not against a pusher trailer, my criticism is directed at this particular implementation. If I am reading other critical comments correctly, this is where the criticism is directed.
michael wrote:
And another million people won't buy electric cars because their "what if I want to go to Las Vegas" argument will continue to be valid.
I hate to use the trite argument that this is a false dichotomy, but it is.
fromport wrote:
I think my friend's 1965 Ford Mustang big block is more polluting while driving just his old timer vs the rav4ev & trailerpusher.
fromport wrote:
In this case his EV needed maintenance in CA, so putting it on a flatbed would have been only option.
I doubt it would do 22-23 miles per gallon, although probably less HC output than the trailerpusher.
The 60's Mustang is certainly on the same order of magnitude in terms of pollution. As I said before, people buy EVs for various reasons and if one's reason is other than cleaner air than ignore my comments, but justifying using this trailer as less polluting than towing the car to California is misguided. As I've stated in my previous replies it is not just a factor of two it is orders of magnitude (HC, CO, NOx, SOx wise).
fromport wrote:
What about all those Ford F250/350 diesels that run around.
Heavy weights, big engines and when I am around it feels like someone is choking me, can't get air.
But that is all legal and so no-one cares ...

These diesels are putting out a lot of particulate pollution and yes people care about it hence the new regulations on controlling this type of pollution.

I would love having the option of renting a safe, clean, efficient pusher trailer. If someone can make that business model work, more power to them.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Thu Apr 09, 2015 9:40 pm 
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I had intended to let this matter drop, but because of the follow-on responses I can't control myself. I promise to try to be constructive.

I understand the criticism is directed at the specific implementation. If this were a production item, or even a pre-production model, I would absolutely agree. But please consider that this is a one-off, home-built prototype, made largely from salvage parts. I imagine it was self-funded. A breadboard, so to speak. It should not be held to the same level of design maturity.

In my business, we assess projects in terms of "technical readiness level" or TRL. This is at TRL 5 or 6, which is a breadboard or subsystem in a laboratory or field conditions. It is not expected to meet all the requirements. But it is considered an important step along the path of development So I think it is appropriate to accept things at this stage that would not be found in a market-ready product. Those hopefully can be added in future iterations.

This system allows a RAV to perform missions that few of us would undertake, and which nobody could perform as easily. It appears to me that this combination can travel 1200 miles in 24 hours (at 50 MPH). If we go by Tony's range chart, this would take 6.7 extended charge cycles (at 180 miles/charge, under perfect conditions). Call it 7, so one would need 6 recharges enroute. If 10 kW charging stations were placed at exactly the right locations along an electric highway that happened to follow our route, about 30 additional hours would be spent charging, 54 hours in all, more than twice as long.

Who among us has made something better? I sure haven't. I hope this same person or someone else will come up with the next generation.


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:59 am 
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Tadol wrote:
The only reason I asked is that it seems like if it were possible to make a small generator that only did straight up DC, and eliminated all the other hardware and overhead thats necessary to make a universal 110/220 AC unit, then it could be used as a towable emergency recharge unit, a portable recharge station for EV rallys or meetups in locations that have minimal or no recharging capabilities, or similar. Depending on cost, if it had the ability to also output 12vdc, it could be a great camping / emergency generator for led lighting and such -

I'm not sure what it'd take, but seems like it could be useful -



It's been done over and over. Just like the more advanced push trailers that have been done before and beaten to death on old EV discussion lists and forums. Even pocket generators that slide into trailer hitches. Speaking of old stuff, Tom who's company's motor/inverter design was the platform of the original Tesla drive moved on and let his trailer generator go into history books like many others.

http://www.evnut.com/rav_longranger.htm

There are so many range extenders and pushers out there from so long ago they are not even indexed on Google anymore :lol: There are examples of companies making range extenders recently but many have gone out of business.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 1:17 am 
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michael wrote:
I had intended to let this matter drop, but because of the follow-on responses I can't control myself. I promise to try to be constructive.



Who among us has made something better? I sure haven't. I hope this same person or someone else will come up with the next generation.



Who would want to when other people have made more advanced push trailers long ago, why use something that is more primitive than what has already been done before as a starting point to move forward? Nothing personal but based on your comments I honestly don't think you have a sense or understanding of EV history and what has been done and beaten to death on EV discussion lists in the last 15+ years.


Putting all the facts and history aside, if push trailers and generators make sense for EVs in the future then EV tech and EVs in general are doomed. Even if they were a stop-gap solution this guy is certainly not the starting point for anything except entertainment on this thread.

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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2015 4:02 am 
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My goodness, what a tempest! :P
Those who pronounce this rig unsafe must have very little trailer-towing experience. Its miniscule weight compared to the tow vehicle, the long tongue, and the brake-interlocked ignition that causes instant engine braking makes the trailer dynamics superior to any unbraked trailer, and for that matter just about any unpowered trailer. How do I know? Well, besides my CDL experience towing 20 tons, I've driven the rig in question on a 120 mile trip, and after that pleasant experience, built one of my own. I have also resurrected the original pusher trailer built by JB Straubel, now CTO of Tesla Motors.

(As recently announced to the Seattle EVA listserve by Historic Electric Vehicle Foundation President Roderick Wilde)
On another note we have had great support in the form of donations of vehicles, products, and literature from many. Recently Seva member Jay Donnaway procured J.B. Straubel’s pusher trailer that J.B. built while attending college at Stanford. He built it to offer range extension for his Porsche electric conversion. For those not familiar with J.B.Straubel, he is the partner of Elon Musk in the Tesla Motor Company and the company’s Chief Technical Officer. It appears that early on range anxiety may have led to the development of a long range EV with quick charge stations. Here is an article from the May 2007 issue of Popular Science with a picture of the trailer and his Porsche conversion. https://books.google.hr/books?id=y9bRa2 ... ce&f=false

This vintage pusher now functions as well as it did in 1996. For those of you who think this uncatalyzed wonder is a huge spewer of emissions, well, yes- it makes more NOx due to higher temperatures, and unburnt hydrocarbons are commensurate with the state of tune, but the bottom line is that of my over 60,000 electric miles, only a very small percentage have been 'pushed', and that will continue to be the case. Of my non-electric miles, over 100,000 were accomplished on an identical engine, which a great many of my friends continue to do today; legally, and with great enjoyment. I drive my unconventional hybrid only occasionally and when needed, with even greater enjoyment, and at over twice the total trip mpg of our alternative, the family minivan.
Image
https://www.dropbox.com/sc/9q2vz1mxqyeg ... 7e-KUX8r8a
:mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Trailer range extender
PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2015 7:40 am 
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What? This is not the first push trailer? Shocking :lol: Now I thought it was the birthplace of a new revolution that was going to eventually lead to the modern revolution of push trailers. There must be all sorts of cut up cars back to a model T. :D

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