July 14, 2020 SEVA meeting via Zoom:
Vice President Grace Reamer called the meeting to order at 7:02 p.m., at once turning chairing of the meeting over to President Jay Donnaway. Jay called for items for the agenda and the Good of the Order.
GREENWOOD – Jay asked if anyone had participated in the virtual Greenwood Car Show. Billy said he was going to, but it didn’t happen. Jay noted that it would have been less fun driving behind a parade of gas guzzlers. Jay said that the board consented to send a donation to the Greenwood Knights in the range of our registration fee of $400.
TREASURER’S REPORT – Jay noted that our Treasurer Brian Henderson is not present, but he has spoken with Brian and taken care of several duties, including renewing the post-office box on May 20, and depositing proceeds from Amazon Smile, which continue to come in. The most recent Smile deposit was $13.59. The present bank balances are $18,887.79 in one account, $5,697 in the second, and $207 in the checking account. The total [which Jay stated in the Zoom chat box and is slightly different than the sum of these three balances] is $24,792.48. There were no transactions in the past six months, except for incoming deposits. Brian is continuing to figure out how to match incoming Paypal dues with who the renewing members are. We still have to file SEVA’s taxes and annual secretary-of-state report. Jay said that SEVA has received another unsolicited $500 grant from the Seattle Foundation. We’re now sitting on too much money and need to think about what to do with it. Andrea said she can put together a survey to see what kinds of activities and events we could pursue.
INSURANCE – In Events Chair Phil Skoog’s absence (Phil having been bird-dogging virtual events at the XXX in Issaquah), Jay called on Brian True to talk about virtual Drive Electric Week events. Brian said that typical event insurance was a million dollars. Jay said that we get this through the Electric Auto Association. we will need to e-mail for approval. Ron Freund said that EAA has discontinued this. Liability and board officers’ insurance need to be researched. Grace suggested having a proposal ready for the August meeting. Jay said he would follow up with a broker he knows. Theresa Ramsdell mentioned K&K Insurance which provided a D&O policy for the PNW Tesla Owners’ Club. There might be a Drive Electric Week event in Everett, and Brian True will coordinate it.
EVENTS – Grace and Brian discussed the logistics of car events at which the public can enter the car. Grace said that Tesla sanitizes between every customer and wondered if SEVA members would be willing to do that. It’s unclear if dealers will participate in events during the pandemic. Jay said that the Sept. 12 event in Steilacoom has not been cancelled.
TOC – The Tesla Owners Club has restarted its monthly charger checks, but only in areas in Phase Three of the reopening so they can have gatherings of up to 50. The next one will be at the new Tumwater supercharger, 12-2 p.m. on Aug. 1. They’ll then try to do Leavenworth if that town is in Phase Three by September. There will be a Tesla Trivia Night at the end of July. That has a maximum of 20 people. It will be a quiz on the history of Tesla. Theresa will have her quarterly call with Tesla on July 16 and she can update at the next SEVA meeting.
CONVERSION PROJECTS – Jay called on Charlie Tsai to talk about his projects. Charlie finished up the Mustang project a few months ago and has returned to his own Z3. He’s putting in a 2017 Leaf battery pack, and upgrading the motor controller. He expects a 50 percent increase in power. BMS will be Manzanita Micro from Rich Rudman. Jay talked about the range upgrades that EVWorks has been working on. Jay asked if there was any news about the Mountaineers’ project to build an electric snowmobile. Rick said that there wasn’t progress. The local Mountaineers chapter is under financial stress and has limited expenditures. Presently there isn’t funding to pursue the electric snowmobile or the Sno-Cat. Rich displayed a lot of electronic stuff. He’s working on drones.
* Jay and Rich talked about towing an Elek-Trak from Bozeman, and whether Rich knows how to charge its battery.
* Cory Tsai reported that work at Rad PowerBikes is pretty exciting. There’s a newly introduced $1,000 college-student commuter bike. They’re seeing how cautious they can be with COVID, but they have been surprised by how much the e-bike industry has gotten a lift from everyone looking for alternatives to the infection risks of public transportation. They’ve had huge growth in the past two months. Cory and Rich talked about off-road use of e-bikes.
* Rich said that they’re as busy as anytime in the last four years; the pandemic boomed the business. Rich talked about shop safety and preventing in-shop runaways.
* Andrea Toussingnant reported that the state is putting some effort into fleet grants. New DCFCs will be installed. The National Recovery Act has $4.9 billion for infrastructure.
* Kent Bakke reported that all he’s done for the past four months is to grow a beard, but next month he may have a battery pack to show. There’s a company named gobatery.com and Kent expects shipment of a 48v, 100-Ah module with incorporated BMS. He ordered two. He’s just back from an Idaho road trip in the Model 3. He had difficulty using the new Spokane supercharger. He said he thinks the quality of Tesla’s customer service has declined since 2013.
* Grace announced her retirement from Tesla and reported about the Father’s Day cruise in Burien instead of a car show. Grace and Kevin were in the Tesla Model Y that they had just got two days earlier. They were right behind the lead car and in front of about 150 classic cars. They turned on flashing lights and the 14-speaker stereo system to announce that the parade was arriving. While the pandemic continues, we could do all-electric cruises through neighborhoods. This would be great outreach.
CHARGING – Some public EVSEs will accept payment by the touchless RFID chip in some credit cards. Jay said he thinks that with the cash infusion from their IPO, Blink has been the most reliable network for the past year. Rich expressed that there’s no profit in running charging networks. Kent said he thinks that Model 3s might pay as much as 40 cents per kWh for a supercharger; at some point it gets to be profitable (though some disagreed with Kent as to what the charges might be, and Grace noted that the 250-kW stations cost the most).
* Billy complimented EVWorks, and Jay explained the several entities – EVWorks is one – are operated by Pacific Mobility Group. One of them would like a donation of a “tired” Leaf to put into service for a seniors’ doctor-visit taxi on Lopez Island. EVWorks is the electric-vehicle shop. They replaced Billy’s sticky J1772 inlet, which proved clearly to have been off-spec when the car was built.
* Ed Mills was praised for hosting the Zoom meeting. Grace said that Ed will be the Zoom host for the rest of the year. It looks like it’s not improving out of Phase Two for the foreseeable future. We’ll need to look at virtual gatherings or cruises for events like September Drive Electric.
Jay adjourned the meeting at 8:24 p.m. so he could start his 75-mile evening commute.
Minutes submitted by Billy Kreuter, secretary.
August meeting also will be by Zoom, beginning at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 11. Watch e-mail for details and the meeting link coming soon!