Tuesday, 26 June 2012

My Way

Over the last two days I have zipped from Sunderland to Blyth and back , then to Newcastle and back , then to Wolsingham and back with small forays to Whitburn and Dawdon in between. I have purposely driven very economically and not exceeded 50mph . These are pretty representative local trips with Wolsingham at a 58 mile round trip being the longest. I, like Mr Sinatra, have travelled each and every highway, and while Mr S is obsessed with his own way of doing things, I have slavishly  followed the recommended driving methodology and can report that top wack distance on these sort of trips from a fully charged battery is 75 miles allowing a residual 5 miles to limp to a charging point.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Art for Arts sake

Up to Alnmouth to view the wonderful art and craft show in hidden nooks and crannies throughout the village. This requires another stop at Willowburn sports centre for a 30 min charge which only provided a 50 mile boost. Luckily this time we were able to start the charge again and squeeze an additional 30 miles in a 45 minute lunch stop regaled by the soft twang of the ukelele.
A brief chat with a curious sports centre user confirmed in a nutshell the general man in the carpark opinion of electric travel or rather the leaf in particular as follows:
" Is that one on those Leafs?
Don't they cost 30 grand and only do 100 miles. Maybe at 15 grand I would think about it"

Nissan marketing - think ont

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

look out it's coming in your direction.

The efforts of Diana Ross to attract someone's love and affection probably did not go completely unnoticed to the party concerned ( although I contend that you cannot "make " someone love you - this lyric ignores the concept of mutuality ) but this was clearly not the case with the EV on Saturday at the Sunderland festival at Herrington Park. We could have done with some of DRs somewhat unnecessary shrieking warning that she "is coming in your direction" while maneuvering around a wet muddy grass carpark along with thousands of drenched visitors to the great Olympic Torch event. I am not persuaded ( and neither was the carpark attendant ) that the Leaf makes enough manufactured noise at low speeds to give sufficient warning of our approaching "Lurv". There is supposed to be a low rumbling noise to warn pedestrians but I rather favour the idea that I should be able to select a noise of choice related to the specific situation. The car instantly recognises my iphone when I get in and starts to play selections form my itunes library . Why can't I at least select relevant  a ring tone as an approach  warning, or better still the chimes of an ice cream van.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Why do you build me up,Buttercup baby just to let me down

On a "slightly damp" friday evening we needed a quick electric boost and called in on the fast charger at Gateshead stadium. We had about 40 miles on the clock and assumed that the 30min charge would take us up to 100% . Apparently not. We reached a total combined charge of 82 miles in the allotted time. For obvious reasons of allowing other users access to charge, the system does not allow you to reconnect immediately following a charge,which was fine for where we needed to go that evening and is also a good idea in terms of fair access, but it has shot a hole in our plans to use the Hexham fast charger to give us enough boost to get to the Lake district. Its a good job we have the Foundations on the side lines always ready to ask the important questions in life.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Keep a knockin' but you can't come in

A well planned circiut yesterday started at Sunderland and took me to a meeting at Consett with a 32 amp recharge at the Albert road car park during the meeting. Then on to Newcastle followed by an evening return to Robert Soden's exhibition opening in Sunderland. Its a long climb up to Consett and me and the Leaf were feeling the strain so imagine my concern when the recently installed space age pod refused me access. Various phone calls later and a 30 min delay Roberto had to inform me that all his silky remote computer skills were not going to make my card open the correct charging door in the near future. Intermediate recharging had to be abandoned but I can tell you (and any C2C cyclist  will confirm this) its down hill all the way from Consett to Newcastle resulting in no battery miles being consumed over the entire route from Albert Road to the Scotswood bridge. Still, I have to say my confidence in the welcoming charge pod system has been slightly shaken.