Bullys and the BoobTube


One of the delights of doing something like EVTV is the daily level of surprise. I guess at this stage of my life, there really shouldn’t be any, but much like Charlie Brown and the football, they still get me everytime.

You may recall, and I know its just been in the past few months, where I described the process and results of our efforts at Boardwatch Magazine to put a meter on the Internet and the firestorm that ensued. I was genuinely surprised not so much at the vitriol, but at the seedy smarmy attempts to game the system from some really notable large corporations. We received about four calls a day for months wanting to know who my boss was, did we have a board of directors, who was chairman of the board, who owned the company, etc from people insisting I be “fired”. I did enjoy contemplating what being “fired” might mean from 80 hour work weeks but we didn’t have any of the corporate structure they were looking for.

They contacted ALL our advertisers, who did in turn contact me to express their concern. I was flat on that – we don’t discuss our editorial with advertisers. Sorry. We just don’t do it. Yes of course you can advertise elsewhere.

They contacted the owner of the BUILDING I was in insisting he kick me out of the building. They contacted our Internet service provider to demand we be disconnected. I actually did have one of those contact me to try to get me to tone it down so they wouldn’t have to take this unfortunate action. When I reminded him we had THREE 1.54Mbps connections from three different providers and would LOVE to get out of our current contract so we could get a less expensive one elsewhere, they demurred.

They wanted to contact our insurance company. We didn’t have one.

It went on and on. Fortunately, more as a happenstance of personality than any grand plan, I just wasn’t reachable. We didn’t have anything we cared about that they could take away. But I learned a lot as to the extent that they will go if they find what you say in public is uncomfortable.

I recall years later watching Imus in the Morning issue his nappy headed ho comment and the firestorm that ensued. But in truth, he was forced to apologize widely and with some ethusiasm for a comment that was more misconstrued by those seeking the limelight from it than it quite merited. And indeed CBS dropped him. He later resurfaced on another network but they did indeed make him go away.

I was fully cognizant going in to EVTV that there would be large corporations who would not want what we were going to say to be effectively said. And it has been at some expense that we set up from the beginning to be able to take the heat. There really aren’t any independent sources of news on anything that can serve as an independent voice with no axe to grind. It’s a little hard for almost anyone or any conventional structure to do so.

What I did NOT expect was it to come from the ranks of the electric car makers – in this case Tesla Motors. Of all entities on the planet, that is not where I would expect the corporate bullying I am all too familiar with. Oil companies? Sure. Conventional OEMs? No doubt. Government entities? Probably part of it. But electric car manufacturers????
Who would have thunk it.

My FIRST video on the Internet actually was on YouTube. It’s an actually not very well done time lapse video of the Bill Emerson Bridge.

This bridge is right outside my bedroom window. Bill Emerson was my mother’s first cousin and a Congressional representative for this area and the bridge his his pork contribution to Cape Girardeau. In any event, I’ve had a vision of HD video cameras scattered across the planet that will eventually allow you to convert any wall to any view on the planet you like – a vision derived from my earlier years in Secure Facilities cubicle city where there were no “windows” of any kind. 1350 views in six years. It is a might shy of viral.

But I quickly saw YouTube as precisely what it is, a video slum featuring severe restrictions on anyone who bothers to upload a video. I guess I didn’t take seriously how much of an advertising cesspool it would become as well. Today, they look for any excuse to paper over our videos with some of the most poorly designed advertising on the planet. And if you upload a video to YouTube you kind of have to march to their tune, which changes daily of course.

Young Jehu Garcia, whom I admired greatly at the time, confided that his DSLR video parts business was collapsing and he had to find an income stream if he was to avoid a return to carpentry as a trade and he had high hopes that he could become a video star on YouTube and make a fortune there. He’s read a magazine article on all the money video producers had made on YouTube. I failed I fear in my gentle attempt to explain to him that if there was any money to be made on YouTube the name on the check would be payable to Google, and thus far it had been an financial sinkhole for them as well. He in turn explained that I didn’t know what I was talking about and as he would demonstrate soon enough. As I don’t like the roll of dream debunker, I offered him $300 per month to do a segment a week on EVTV. We did not, and still don’t, pay for video contributions to EVTV. But I was hoping to encourage him a little. That lasted about 2 months of course. He gave me a royal ass chewing for being 3 days late with a payment. I pointed out that it was a holiday, which probably explained why he hadn’t sent in a segment that week either. We finally agreed I would go ahead and pay him for the coming month if he would go away. I did. But he didn’t.

In any event, I early recognized YouTube for what Jehu is now learning it is. Instead, I spent really months learning a much more difficult interface – Amazon’s cloudnet and AWS service. It’s technical. And in 2009 the tools were poor to deal with it. It only allowed 255 files per “bucket” in those days and was quite primitive. But I knew it would grow and change and our decision to host EVTV there was a very good one. The only thing I ever hear from Amazon is incessant requests that they be allowed to help. They have excellent, if slightly overwhelming documentation, seminars, training courses, etc which are probably needed as it is truly a complex environment.

The difference of course is that YouTube is free. You pay for everything on Amazon. We pay an hourly fee for host services to run our web and WordPress servers. Storage charges for every gigabyte of data we host. And bandwidth charges for every bit of data that passes their backbone. I think it’s pretty good value for the money and they are constantly upgrading the service wiht more featurs and more services and indeed more servers located around the world while regularly DECREASING their charges. This network is the real deal and I’m convinced they will at some point own cloud computing outright – ergo my ongoing investment in AMZN. Book sales is not where the future of this company is precisely. They execute very well with a global network.

Of course, every time one of you downloads EVTV, I’m out about 35 cents. Now you know why we don’t exactly WANT to go viral. It would break me. I DO have to point out that Amazon Prime Video and of course Netflix uses exactly the same network and tools to host their own videos. Indeed, Amazon Prime has broached the topic of adding EVTV to their Amazon Prime line which would allow us to sell copies of EVTV potentially to an entirely new audience. After reviewing the various documents, we basically declined. What if it worked? And then what if someone didn’t like what we said and wanted it removed. It is a power control point. A chink in the armor.

We recently published a news story on TEsla Motors, which is not too unusual. WE do so in almost every video. This one talked about their http://service.teslamotors.com site where they make a huge amount of service information available online, including full schematic diagrams not just of the Model S, but of every individual VARIANT of Model S they have produced, by data and feature. It has illustrated parts diagrams with part numbers and very detailed parts information. Most innovative and to me valuable, a CONNECTOR index that lists every electrical connector in the vehicle and providing the connector part numbers and pin definitions and physical locations and on and on. It’s an absolutely stunningly well done online service putting all others to shame. Maintenance procedures. Service bulletins. Can’t recommend it highly enough.

I did take them to task for their attempt to make it available ONLY to residents of the State of Massachusetts, which happens to sport one of the nations very few RIGHT TO REPAIR laws. This law REQUIRES automakers to make available the SAME information they provide to their own dealers and service centers to all independent repair shops AND INDIVIDUALS desiring to repair their own cars. It’s pretty unequivocal. It does allow them to charge for it as long as it is a “fair and reasonable” charge. Tesla interprets that as $30 per hour or $300 per month or $3000 per year. I even kind of like the rate structure. If you just want to check out a schematic – $30. If you are on every day year round – $3000. Cool.

The rub is, of course, they want it to be a secret. They don’t actually want anyone to access it. They just want to be able to point to it if called on the carpet in Massachusetts. And as result they’ve taken one of the stupidest positions I’ve seen yet on the Internet – a World Wide Web site purportedly ONLY available to residents of Massachusetts. It’s a crying shame I didn’t have time to get a quote from Tim Berners-Lee on his take on their redefinition of WORLD WIDE WEB.

In doing the story, we did of course reproduce some sample diagrams to illustrate the quality level of the information – a schematic and an Illustrated Parts Breakdown diagram and Connector cross index if I recall.

This week, I learned that YouTube had REMOVED our April 3rd Episode from the service after receiving a copyright violation claim from Tesla Motors, Inc.


In the past, YouTube simply removed anything anyone claimed was a copyright violation. Today, they have in very self serving fashion devised a cunning scheme where they plaster YOUR video with THEIR advertisements, and then forward the tiny sliver shared with YouTubioans to the claimant. This leads to some comically bizarre abuses in the neverending global competition to dig every last farthing out of the deepest reaches of the grass.

But in this case it just led them to remove the video. I WAS surprised to learn you had a form of appeal. You can file a counter claim and have your video restored. You have to agree to of course pay your own damn legal bills and defend an action in Federal Court but I found it curiously worded as that would be required to be filed in YOUR jurisdiction.

In any event we took advantage of it.

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 10.26.25 PM

The center of the process is that YouTube is attempting to transfer THEIR legal liability for copyright infringement on their service from themselves to you – which as the creator of the work is where it should have been all along of course. And so if Tesla really wants it removed from the service, they have to sue EVTV. Tesla actually has an abysmal record with lawsuits and specifically against newsmedia, so it will be interesting to see. I dont’ think they’ve ever won a case or even had a settled event.

Ms. Charity Allen should of course be a trained lawyer to be allowed to take these actions on behalf of Tesla Motors. I somehow gather she’s not. But in any event, any first year law student or indeed basic business law 101 B-school undergrad would know better in this instance. This is an almost childishly simple textbook example of “Fair Use”

Fair Use is not a theory. It’s an integral part of copyright law granting very specific EXEMPTIONS to copyright law allowing use of public works that are copyrighted. What comprises fair use can indeed become a quagmire and are generally decided on a case by case basis. In this case, it won’t take long. Here’s is a fairly brief, and I think reasonably accurate description of a sometimes complex topic

There are several classic Fair Use tenets that are specifically spelled out in Section 107 of the Copyright law. In this case we qualify under almost all of them.

1. News Reporting. If you are reporting a news event you are really quite free to include copyrighted materials about the event. This is actually the broadest area and obviously our reporting of the existence of the web site rather requires some examples of what is ON it to indeed be news. The point of the news story was more Tesla’s reaction to the Right to Repair law in Massachusetts. But the image of their web site and indeed samples of the data to be found on it would comprise an extremely conservative reading of Fair Use.

2. Criticism. We probably qualify here as well. We were both commenting positively on the high quality of the materials presented on the web site, AND criticising Telsa for putting it up IN public but seeking to limit access to residents of Massachusetts and never mentioning it anywhere else at all that we can find.

3. Teaching/Instruction. Believe it or not you’re given fairly wide lattitude in using copyrighted materials in teaching and instruction. I’m basically free to use any or all of Teslas diagrams and procedures in teaching maintenance of a car or techniques to build a car. I guess I’ve always found this surprising and surprisingly liberal. But that’s the way it is written.

4. Remixes/New Works. If you took 10 music videos on Youtube and combined pieces of all of them into a new music video, believe it or not that is a new work and fair use. More commonly, you do like your own Top 10 Music Videos list and include portions of each. I see this all the time, on YouTube coincidentally, on the Top 10 Britain’s Got Talent tryouts. I actually like them. You can skip all the loser acts and just see the good ones.

In adjudicating fair use, it mostly comes to whether or not your use causes economic harm to the original artist. And it can’t be incidental harm. It has to be replacement. In other words, if you do a review of a book or video game and include excerpts from it, that you tell everybody it is a TERRIBLE book or game and that causes harm – it is still fair use. If you reproduce so much of the original work that people go to see your free version instead of their for pay version, that is an economic harm. You have “replaced” their opportunity to market their work.

In this case, the whole concept is absurd. We put up a part of each of three diagrams behind me in video, of diagrams that are really only useful if they are on paper or some form of PDF where you can actually use them. But the key element is, they were 3 of THOUSANDS of such diagrams and maintenance procedures. It would be absurd to consider them a replacement source of the information.

The bottom line, the heart and nature of EVTV is a triumvirate of News, Editorial, and Instruction. It is so evident, that Tesla’s claim to YouTube is by itself a knowingly fraudulent and slanderous claim.

The intent of course is not to adjudicate Copyright Infringement. Ms. Allen certainly knew beforehand that the claim was ridiculously specious. It would be astounding for them to actually bring an action as undoubtedly they would face not only loss, but probably censure from the court. The intent was to feed on the terror evinced in most people on the Internet at the prospect of the legal expense of being sued.

I once paid a mailing house bill twice. We paid the owner for his work. He sold the company, but had the bill still outstanding on his books. The new owner filed a small claims suit to collect the $3000. The problem was we kind of dropped the ball on it and I suddenly found we had a court date at exactly the same time we had a $3million trade show in San Francisco. I was kind of expected to be there of course – both places. So we paid it again WITH a cancelled check and paid receipt for the work IN HAND.

That kind of got under my saddle. I made an appointment during the week following the show with Davis Graham Stubbs, Denvers largest, oldest, and most prestigious law firm. We came immediately to terms on a sufficiently eggregious monthly retainer fee and I adopted a new policy in concert with them – defend anything to the death, settle nothing, and sue anybody that looks at us cross-ways or mutters anything under their breath.

Within days we were collecting on advertising accounts that were six months overdue. And when I sold Boardwatch they actively prevented a $5 million dollar near mistake in a 740 page sale document. Today, it is just part of business. Get over it. You have to pay to play.

To BE an independent and truthful voice in a world of corporate beheamoth dinosaurs, you can’t just bluster like Imus. You really have to BE bullet proof. If they take away your house, build a new one. If they sieze your birthday, look at as an opportunity to claim to be any age you like and celebrate when you want. But in all events, avoid falling under CONTROL of someone else who may lack the personal courage to stand by their convictions. Amazon’s Instant Video and YouTube are classic examples. We cannot depend on them – ever and at all.

I do kind of depend on YouTube, but not for anything important to me. As best I can tell, we have about 18,000 what I would call “regular” viewers who view our show at least twice a month. YouTube might be 1000. We upload for a specific reason. IOS devices do not support Flash. And as a convenience to some of our viewers who watch on an iPad or iPhone, it is easier for them to get it on YouTube. YouTube DOES do an excellent job of video format conversion. I think Amazon cloudnet probably does as well, but I haven’t learned to use it yet.

[jwplayer streamer=”rtmp://s3einxnpkaij93.cloudfront.net/cfx/st/” provider=”rtmp” file=”news041715-iPhone.mp4″ hd.file=”news041715-1280.mp4″ image=”http://media3.ev-tv.me/news041715.jpg”  width=”850″ height=”522″ html5_file=”http://media3.ev-tv.me/news041715-1280.mp4″]

So that is what I am finding interesting this week. For you, probably not so much. What we do have is Damien Maguire plugging a BMW DIY conversion into an AVC50 CHAdeMO charge point and elegantly sipping electrons at 123 amperes. I’ve prevailed on other hack team members key on this project to provide a little look under the hood as to how and why. Collin Kidder describes how to write and test software at a distance of 4000 miles. I kind of assisted with showing how to debug using print statements in very old school fashion. And Paulo Almeida discusses why we started with an ATMega328P chip and how we loaded the poor thing to stall with additional features. He also discusses the next generation prototype using a new ARM CORE0 chip bumping the memory from 32kb to 256kb, as well as speed and compatibility. This is the chip Arduino uses in their new ZERO board.

He also discusses some of the passive component design choices for the OTHER end of CHAdeMO that he is working on. A DC-DC buck/boost switch that is bidirectional at up to 500v and 300 amps. Apparently, by switching at 100kHz they think they can get the necessory inductor value down to about 35 uH. We love it if they can make it so.

This comprises our point of attack on Fast Charging. Somewhat more ambitious than you might have thought or even Damien might have thought. We intend to seize CHAdeMO as the standard for DIY EV’s and improve upon it – the game is to eventually displace both SAE Combo and Tesla’s Supercharger as the “standard” way to fast charge. Combo is Dead on Announcement. And Tesla is now facing increasing demand for CHAdeMO adapters for their cars. It will take five years to play out, but the outcome is already clear to me. It will be a 300 amp version of CHAdeMO.

I am told that Tesla has now opened a fast charge station in St. Charles Missouri. That’s about 140 miles from here and certainly reachable by Model S. It does not yet appear on their maps and indeed Missouri isn’t listed at all.

Finally I do a basic device to make bottom balancing easier and less expensive – mostly to further educate our West Coast interns – Industry Legend in his own mind, Michael Bream and the shortest movie mogul on the planet, Jehu Garcia. They do a regular comic parody of EVTV itself (fair use), but unfortunately got confused on another topic – plagiarism regarding bottom balancing. We call them out on it.

61 thoughts on “Bullys and the BoobTube”

  1. Hi Jack:

    I watch your show primarily for your item # 3. I own an EV conversion, and I am converting another car to electric drive. I have no education in electricity theory or application so I watch your show weekly on You Tube (I have Apple devices at home) to learn about the field. I will happily serve as a witness if you need.

    1. I am also an Apple-centric household (except for the stupid window$ laptop I had to buy for the CellPro PowerLab) and I can vouch for the fact that the flash JWplayer on the EVTV home page plays just fine on my iMac. For iPhone or iPad devices let me clarify what Jack said about the archives page. Go to the Archives page and click on the date to launch the high-res (1280) file for the iPad. it runs just fine there (HTML5 maybe?) and I often watch the show that way in the garage while putzing around on my PorscheEV project. Click on the title to launch the low-res iPhone version. Right click either on an iMac and you can download for later viewing. No need for YouTube at all, except sometimes the weekly show turns up there before it makes it to the Amazon cache server near me.

      John, I’m anxious to hear about your new conversion since your Nash Metropolitan is now in Jack’s fleet.

      1. I normally use the Youtube version because Firefox blows up and sinks rather regularly on my box when trying to play it on the site. Also Youtube remembers where you got up to if you don’t watch it all in one sitting

    1. Yeah, the problem is that the chademo specification uses 8-bit unsigned integers for the current request so you can’t ask for more than 255 amps. If/when Paulo gets the monster online we’ll have to create some form of extension to actually ask for and track the higher amperage. But, that’s a good problem to have!

    2. You might want to test on someone else’s car before you charge at a 12C rate 🙂

      For the current generation of batteries, a faster Chademo would be more for charging a big battery in 20 minutes rather than a small battery in 5 minutes. Future advances in power capabilities could change that, of course.

  2. Hey Jack,

    I am one of the perennial “lurkers” on your site. I started viewing primarily as an effort to understand the broader issues of electric transportation, but became an EVTV regular after watching your various tech sessions on the intricacies of electronics and the nuances of battery chemistries. CAN is just the latest area of “black magic” that is finally seeing the light of day due to the various projects you are working on.

    I am afraid I’m about to take the leap from lurker to doer. Tomorrow evening I should have a new (to me) 1970 BMW 2002 in my garage, the hopeful future platform for a “love you long time” electric vehicle. My main challenges to overcome are a few pounds of rust, and the finances to pull the project off. Time, I believe, will take care of both.

    This is not a Boy Scout moment; I am definitely NOT prepared. But 1) Who is? and 2) if everyone waited to be prepared, we would have very few EVs on the road today.

    1. Brian Couchene

      George, Congratulations on taking the leap. I might offer you some advice and to all others doing conversions. Peruse the EVTV web store before looking elsewhere for components. If evtv doesn’t sell the make of DC-DC converter for example, that you think you want, there might be a good reason it’s not offered by evtv. EVTV sells quality components at a good value. Searching for the cheapest components is a common theme of people doing EV conversions. It usually results in an unreliable vehicle, or costing more when the cheap parts fail and have to be replaced. Look for good quality, reliable components, and where possible talk to people who have used the specific part themselves. The reason why Jack and the hack team are so excited about being able to utilize oem components is that they are high quality and relatively inexpensive because they are mass produced, not because they are made using inferior components.

  3. Brian Couchene

    I wanted to comment on this weeks show and say that I liked the “credits” during the intro fly-by. More people will see them on the beginning than at the end, where people just stop the video. (I always watch till the very end because you never know when jack will slip in another bonus video segment at the end). Seeing the credits for the submitted segments, get’s you excited about watching the video as well.

  4. Brian Couchene

    Did anyone else catch that Charity Allen used a gmail e-mail address instead of her BUSINESS employers official address? I wonder how much of a background check Youtube does to even see if the complaint came from a reputable source or just someone creating a bogus g-mail account and claiming the work for some company… For all we know, someone that Jack got in an argument with could have created a gmail account and filed a complaint?

    1. Yes, I noticed that as well. I would expect that youtube would at least attempt a reasonable verification of authority before taking a video down. Perhaps that is expecting too much. This Ms. Allen doesn’t have either a Tesla email address nor an email address at a law firm. This is very suspicious. However, in this case it still could be legit. Gander upon this linkedin profile: https://www.linkedin.com/pub/charity-goodman-allen/8/355/780

      It seems that Charity Allen is probably really a real person who really works for Tesla. It’s just strange she’d use a gmail address and not something more official.

    1. Yes, I heard about this. Automakers are attempting to create unrepairable cars. But, what they’re really concerned with isn’t so much people repairing cars but rather people like me who hack the components. They might as well create a law called “Collin sucks; keep him away from our cars” 😉

      1. I don’t get this. Why do they care what happens to the components? I think they’re more focused on the cars. But I don’t quite get that either. I know they don’t like the “tuners” who modify the ECU code. And I can kind of grok a generalized fear of devices spoofing on their CAN bus on an operating car. But there really isn’t very much of this. More like OVSM where they simply pull PIDS and display data that is hardly proprietary – speed, rpm, state of charge, etc.

        I think in the case of Tesla, there is some legitimate security issues regarding access to the car over the GSM network. A very different issue in my mind. We don’t want access to OTHER people’s cars. Nor do we really have any methodology to perform that feat.

        We just want access to our own by hardwire. Elon himself has acknowedged that that is not the problem nor can much be done about it if it was. It is very hard to prevent someone from “hacking” a computer they are sitting at and have access to the hardware. His concern was entirely the over the air GSM access and they’ve apparently hired a team of hackers to try to get in so they can secure it. All good.

        But why would they even care what happens to a windshield wiper motor pulled from a wrecked Tesla? These companies take each others cars apart all the time. The only IP of any real value in the automotive world has to do with manufacturing and assembly processes. I would think BMW would find their investment in CFRP for example to represent both an investment and competitive advantage. How the electric motor works is just not a big deal unless they come up with something truly remarkable. And how to WORK the motor is just absurd. The concept of FORWARD, REVERse, and TORQUE COMMANDS is just not a very protectable area. And for why?


  5. I remembered seeing some discussion of future enhancement of Chademo from years back, so I did some digging. Couldn’t find the discussion I was looking for, but did find this: http://www.chademo.com/wp/technology/optimal/ which mentions upgrades to 200Amps. The limit being “The conductor geometry of CHAdeMO connector is designed to allow for 200A”. That’s a little shy of the 300Amps Jack mentioned though.

    This is all unobtainium at the moment, and looks like Nissan trying to give the appearance of future proofing Chademo, without actually doing anything (at least until they have a car able to use it).

    If the current spec doesn’t support more than 55Amps, any change to allow greater current will only work for home built EV’s supporting this new spec. Current OEM EVs will only be asking for up to 55Amps. This includes Tesla with the Chademo adapter.

    The other problem is: If and when Nissan & co get around to upgrading the Chademo spec, the EVTV Chademo spec will almost certainly be incompatible.

    It’s probably best to walk before you run, and building an EVTV Chademo which goes up to 55Amps would still be a great idea all by itself. I’m currently living in a Chademo desert, and anything which makes them easier to deploy has my undying support.

      1. Jarkko Santala

        The CHAdeMO posts around here are rated for 400VAC 110A input (as per sticker in the back), so they have a 44kW limit, whichever comes first on the output, volts or amps. So you can charge at for example 352VDC 125A, 400VDC 110A or 500VDC 88A. Nissan I believe uses 400VDC so they can go up to 110A. My C-Zero (aka i-MiEV) charges at 361VDC so I could see up to 122A, but in practice I get 118A on most stations. At least for a very short moment (around 40% SOC) before it hits the 361VDC limit set by the vehicle. Anyway, just to point out that EVSE input will also place it’s limits on how fast you can charge, even if CHAdeMO allows for 500VDC 125A.

  6. Incidentally, you no longer need to use the flash based JWPlayer with WordPress. You can simply use the [video] short code to embed video. This would fix your Apple issues. Personally, I use the download method ad described in the show, and have for years. I copy the video to a pen drive, play it on my Roku and enjoy the show in the comfort of my living room.

  7. Jack, with your comment ‘the OTHER end of CHAdeMO’: are you referring to the DC charging station itself that will comprise a DC-DC buck/boost switch? (is EVTV developing a CHAdeMO charging station?)
    Or should this switch be a component on the vehicle side, between the Yazaki DC contacts and the fast charge contactors?

    1. Hmmm. Well fundamentally the switch will be with the accummulator – the box of batteries. And will act as a CHAdeMO charger at up to apparently 255 amps for now.

      The concept is somewhat fungible. For example, I could mount the switch on the back of the Escalade and use the 75kw pack that drives it as a source as well. Presto – AAA rescue truck. It can pull up and quick charge you and move on.

      But yes, the intent is a CHAdeMO capable of large currents with NO 3 phase requirement. Solar and 240vac charging of the accummulator. But the box I already have sitting in the shop could charge 3 cars at 255 amps at teh same time in theory.


        1. That’s probably a good idea. Using motor field windings as inductors is like using a chainsaw to mow your lawn. Technically maybe you could but that’s not what it’s designed for.

  8. The segment on bottom balancing in this week’s show is masterful – I agree with virtually all of it. My only slight demur is in the use of Arduinos. I have two Arduino based bottom balancing rigs (one for 18650s and one for big prismatics). Both operate on exactly the principle Jack outlined (bounce up and down between two voltages for a period). They do batches of 8 cells each. I use relays and a MOSFET in series and defensive coding. I suppose to be quite safe you could have a second Arduino wired to a guillotine or explosive charge to disconnect the power supply if it detected excessive low voltage but I haven’t gone to those lengths. I am sure that Jeff Southern could do a more robust rig using a PLC

    Being a data junkie I record current and voltage every 30 seconds during bottom balancing. I have bottom balanced lithium cobalt, lithium manganese and NMC, and have NCA cells queued up.

    My rigs also monitor the voltages every 15 minutes for a week after balancing finishes to detect cells with soft shorts. The lithium cobalt, lithium manganese and NMC proved to be far bouncier than the lithium iron phosphate with the LiCo voltage recovering from 2.7 to 3.3 volts over a solid week. It was still showing no sign of levelling off after a week, climbing about 5 mV between day 6 and day 7.

    I would emphasise the point that Jack made about using two independent sets of wires in any kind of automated rig: one to carry current and one to sense voltage. I made the same mistake initially and the results were a mess (although happily not a dangerous mess – just the cells were all over the place). And I don’t use clips for the same reason

    1. I allowed as how it could be done with Arduinos. Just not my style. I intend to use them in battery tests. But the simpler systems work fine for me balancing. But it can certainly be done and I’m sure safely.


      1. I use what used to be my “working” mini BMS in my bus. It works great, nipped the resistors off, and it acts as a perfect control side to any load to drain the the cells to approx 2.55-2.60 then bounce they back to approx 2.75. BMS is good, we’ve just been using them them for the wrong function

      2. Yes I think tbat is fair. There is also the point that I probably do a lot more balancing than most for my testing. Building a complex rig for one car wouldn’t be worth the time investment.

  9. For fast bulk discharging of the 100ah cells I use my JLD404, JLD5740, Contactor, switch, 12v power for the contactor and two DC Series Motors. This setup shuts off on its own. No need for a buzzer but it would be nice while Im doing other things to have an audio device but you must have a way to shut it off when your not there to shut it off. Then I use my PowerLab8 to do the final discharge with a cc/cv algorithm. Works great.

    Thanks Jack.

  10. Regarding the CHAdeMO section of the video – great work you’re doing by the way ! – I think you can just forget / ignore the 0.9 version of the protocol. It is really being phased out fast and all new CHAdeMO stations will have the 1.0x version implemented. Makes no sense to spend to much time on developing the JKD505 software to be able to support both versions. Just aim for 1.0x support.
    Second thing, I heard Colin mentioning that you are testing up to more than 95% SOC. However, as far as I know CHAdeMO typically is designed to stop fast charging around 80% SOC. Or isn’t it?

    1. MrtijnEV:

      It is not. CHAdeMO is designed just to charge – at up to 500v and if full spec up to 125A. The amount of charge any particular vehicle takes is ENTIRELY up to the vehicle.

      Lithium ion cells are typically charged using a very simple CC/CV procedured. You charge at constant current (CC) until you reach a specific voltage. You then adjust the current to hold the voltage constant (CV) until the amount of current diminishes to some agreed level – typically c/20. The amount of time between the two phases is largely a function of how high a level of current you put in during CC. At high current levels, this could be very short, and then with a LONG time at CV. In this case, you might not to want to spend much time with it as the speed of charging drops off markedly as you reduce current for obvious reasons.

      All the cars that use CHAdeMO and that is notably the Nissan Leaf, use LiMn204 spinel cells. You would charge these to 4.2v but the charge curve is relatively flat at the end. It does not turn sharply upwards as our LiFePo4 cells do. LiFePo4 cells have a very flat charge curve until near the end where they suddenly turn vertical.

      In our testing here, we found that in chargeing at 3C, if we simply charged full bore until we REACHED the CV target voltage, and then ceased entirely, that it left us at about 95% SOC.

      Bottom line, LiFePo4 cells are simply better at fast charge than the cells Nissan uses.

      Hope this helps.

      Jack Rickard

  11. As a reminder – yet another way to access EVTV on iPhone and iPad is podcast. There is a lot of podcast apps for iOS, including Apple’s.
    EVTV podcast URLs are:
    http://feeds.feedburner.com/evtv/sd – lower resolution version for phones and slower connections
    http://feeds.feedburner.com/evtv/hd – HD version
    http://feeds.feedburner.com/EvtvMotorVerks – combined version

    Oh, and I think you could enter podcast URL to Roku or similar smart TV player to have instant access to future episodes on a TV set.

  12. “Bloomberg Intelligence notes that for the $166 million to spent in California to build 100 hydrogen fueling stations, 2,750 fast chargers could be built”

    1. Don’t you know? The official motto of the United States (and all 50 states) is: Why spend money frugally when you can fund pork barrel projects for your buddies? I really don’t think anyone in the gov’t here has any idea how to properly spend money. Why should they? Nearly any time they run out of money they either borrow it or raise taxes. I’d imagine that a billion dollars could blanket the entire continental US with chademo chargers. That’s about what we spend on one jet nobody wants or needs.

          1. When the first H2 gun freezes to the car on some wet day.
            Still takes 30 minutes to fill a safety H2 tank due to the hydride(?) crystals.
            I guess a H2 range extender would be nice but its not going to be a cheap refill !!

    1. I had college class mates that wound up chasing hydrogen leaks on the NASA space shuttle. I dealt with small masses of super heated hydrogen in the research labs until the assistance-ship grant money disappeared. You’ll never catch any of us buying-in to this transient reality distortion field.

      1. Jarkko Santala

        You’re missing the point. Not asking your software for free, even if it might be available. More like will you guys keep the CHAdeMO information you’ve learned a secret or will you make a point of disclosing it publicly. I understand that actually making it presentable (and updated) is a lot of work, so it might not get done simply for that reason. But to really further the cause of “open source” electric vehicles, I think it would make an invaluable resource to have all the CAN data you’ve reverse engineered, not just with CHAdeMO, but the UQM and others, somewhere organized and freely available. So that once you’re gone, someone could still have that information and get things running again. Otherwise there’s the risk that it will all be lost. So, not asking for free software, or free hardware, but free information. I doubt I’ll ever need any of it, I’ll just buy the ready-made product if I need the features, maybe hack it a little, but I think if one would like to roll their own, they should be able to.

        1. Oh, I see what you mean. Well, we have done that kind of thing with past work. I wrote a document which explains the DMOC645 communications structure. I believe somewhere we’ve got documentation about the UQM inverter. I know I did a presentation at EVCCON about how the UQM security byte works and gave away the powerpoint slides so that’s out in public. There are other documents about the DC/DC converters and heaters that we’ve been working with. Perhaps it is not all organized and available like it should be. Currently you’ve likely got to dig around to find it all and put the pieces together.

          So far most all of the stuff being done by the EVTV hack team has been released eventually. Will the chademo stuff be released? That’s not entirely for me to say. We have canbus captures, we have a pretty good idea of what it takes to interface with a chademo station. Nobody has exactly sat down and written down exactly what you have to do to make it work.

          So, I suppose a centralized way of finding this information could be handy.

          1. Jarkko Santala

            I guess ideally it could be a searchable PDF publication “The EV CAN Hacker’s Handbook” which would have information on how to hack CAN and contain all reverse engineered CAN driven EV components so far with all the CAN codes discovered. Updated as new devices are hacked. Perhaps a shiny print version you can order from EVTV store, just to have a physical version you can keep in your EV or wherever you think the OEMs wouldn’t be able to come and take it away. A single, well done source for all this information would really show them they can’t win the secrets game and they should just give the information away in the first place.

          2. Jarkko Santala

            As for the reverse engineering, I think you should steer away from any official information, like the Tesla service site. I’ve understood that the most important principle in reverse engineering is not to access the official data, because if you do, they can get to you. If you do it all on your own, they can’t. That’s why I think using the Tesla service site is not a good idea. It will open you up for litigation. Just my two euro cents.

  13. Are you considering to make the JLD505 CHAdeMO interface also capable of interfacing with vehicle side CAN messages regarding battery voltage, current, cell/group level temperatures, and faults/stop signals? I understand of course that in that case the JLD505 will really move away from what it originally was intended to become as I understand from JR in the video (i.e. a simple battery monitoring system), but on the other hand it would make it a great retrofit CHAdeMO interface for both vehicles that already have a (CAN based) battery monitoring system on board (incl production vehicles without CHAdeMO such as the Volt), as well as for vehicles that don’t have one yet. A multipurpose product ! 🙂
    If yes, of course there should be some sort of menu or UI where the user can 1) switch between hardware based shunt vs CAN message 2) hardware based temp sensors vs CAN messages 3) set the ID’s and structure of these vehicle CAN messages.
    Would be great!

    1. That’s probably not a bad idea. It could be a bit interesting to support arbitrary canbus messages. But, I think that something like this could be possible in the future if enough people express interest in such a thing.

      1. I also shared this idea with Anne and Celso recently.
        What I could do is implement this idea on a CANDue and prototype test it in combination with the JLD505 on my own EV which sends such CAN messages. The ‘only’ special requirement that I then would have for the JLD505 is that it can work without the hard wired shunt, and that the program will respond in a split second to an input (eg 5V high/low) that comes from the CANDue: the fault/stop charging signal. As a backup we could also create a second ‘heartbeat’ high/low input that is based on an alive CAN bus : as soon as it drops the input goes low and charging stops immediately. Would that work?

    2. MartijnEV
      IF you will go over to the EVTV forums you will find a wealth of knowledge there. You will find detailed documentation on the Coda Lear charger, Chevy Volt DC-DC converter, Nissan Leaf DC-DC converter, Delphi DC-DC converter, and much more. This forum is a place for technical discussion and documentation but not random chit chat. For example, the Lear charger documentation includes functional descriptions, design characterics, specifications, dimensions, wiring diagrams and yes, all the CAN documentation that is known. IF you are looking for detailed CHADEMO info, that is found elsewhere, but is also an open standard that you can get the documentation on. I don’t know if jack is intending on developing kits for OEM compliance cars but is surely working towards empowering those bold enough to take on a conversion to utilize the best technology available, like CHADEMO. If you aren’t happy with how GM is telling you to drive your Volt by not including a fast charge port, why did you shell out money for a license to drive one (You don’t actually own the vehicle, just a license to drive it, the OEM still owns the vehicle) in the first place?

      1. Hi Brian, I don’t have a Volt. I have a self built EV Conversion! The Volvo 240 Electric, and it has built-in CAN traction pack and cell level messages. I now want to fast charge enable it. JLD505 looks like a great solution but I don’t want to duplicate the the hardware, eg shunts and temp sensors that I already have on the CAN bus.
        Volt was just an example that the JLD505 would then also be interesting for addressing the OEM market.

        1. You’d still need the JLD505, unless you were able to reprogram your BMS controller to include CHADEMO support. There is very little cost, weight, or space saving in removing 1 shunt and a couple temperature sensors. Anything is possible, but it might not be worth the effort. Which BMS do you have, Orion?

          1. I have an Elithion Lithiumate Pro BMS.
            I clearly understand that I need the JLD505 for CHAdeMO support.
            My idea is to put a CANDue between the Lithiumate and the JLD505 so the CAN messages from the Lithiumate will be interpreted by the CANDue (by running a sketch on it that I’d have to write myself) which on its turn then could output logic outputs (5V high/low) and analog outputs (0V-5V) that connect to the JLD505.
            Could that result in a decent solution? I am looking forward to learn more how the JLD505 program and inputs/outputs work, as soon as the product is ready and available.

  14. Just watched your 24 April news video. I found it a fascinating tale about the start up battery in a wooden box. I did something much simpler. The relay we’re using to turn off the DC/DC converter has a low power coil. To restart the DC/DC there is a 9 volt battery with a push button switch and a pair of isolation diodes. When the button is pushed the relay pulls in, the DC/DC comes on, powering up the BMS, once the BMS is happy it turns on the relay, the isolation diodes bypass the 9 volt battery, keeping the relay pulled in. So essentially I start a car with a Duracell 9 volt transistor battery. It only needs to provide power for at most 10 seconds. The battery is cheap enough that recharging is not required. Probably will last 10 years.

    1. Jarkko Santala

      I use a proper 12V aux battery in order to provide peak amps to certain components, like a hydraulic power steering pump. If you turn the wheels as far as they go, the pump will draw so much amps trying to fight the stop that the DC/DC converter will shutdown without a healthy 12V aux battery. I think I can get away with a smaller DC/DC converter this way and also prolong the life of the converter.

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