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[Image from Electric Vehicles are for Girls]

Nikki Bloomfield pointed this one out to me yesterday while we were talking about EVs.

The idea here is that if you want to do an electric car conversion, but are not fully confident, you can join others and take an online course through the Electric Cars are for Girls site. The site is already a decent source for EV information. There is a good description of the project on Auto Blog Green:

Converting a liquid-fueled vehicle to electric drive is nothing new, but, if you’ve never done it before, then everything can be fresh and totally overwhelming. For those of you interested in trying a conversion project, the fine folks at Electric Cars Are For Girls are here to help. The site is getting ready to put EV conversion classes online using the same materials and demonstrations that they use in local classes. The project is called EV University, and they are currently running a survey to find out what would be most useful to home mechanics. The classes will include written materials, videos, lectures with slides and a chance to interact with the instructors. Help them out by taking the survey. If you want to help them out more, they are also looking for people to teach the courses.

This is a new project, looking for participants. Right now the site is in “seed mode” with starter bits of information in place with a promise of more to come. Nikki is up for teaching a class on Plug In Hybrid Electric Vehicles or PHEVs. They have a survey up asking for people to tell what they are interested in learning on the EV subject. If you have a huge bucket of knowledge on the subject, maybe you teach a class?

Chris Connors

Making things is the best way to learn about our world.


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Comments

  1. hurf durf says:

    Electric cars aren’t “green”, they’re coal-powered. Ride a bike, hookers.

    1. Clear Blue Sky says:

      Obvious trolling post aside, the general idea that electric cars are “coal-powered” is dishonest.

      My electric company gives me a breakdown of their power delivery by generation type. Around 15% of my power comes from coal.

      Check your own generation mix at the EPA’s web site:

      http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy-and-you/how-clean.html

      1. hurf durf says:

        … but in UHMURIKKKUH, electric cars can be bought in all the states. Therefore, electric cars are 50% coal powered, 22% natural gas powered, 19% nuclear powered, 6% hydroelectric powered, 2% renewable powered, and ironically enough, 2% petroleum powered. YMMV, of course. And so, if you want to be green, get on your bike. Because there ain’t nothing green about plugging a f*ing car into the grid, folks. Nothing. Not from the raw material mining process, not the shipment of those materials to refiners, not the refining processes, not the shipment of refined materials to manufacturers, not the shipment of parts to an assembly factory in asia, not the shipment of the finished vehicle to the docks, not the shipment of your vehicle to our docks, not the offloading and transportation to dealers, and not the plugging of those vehicles into the grid at your f*ing condo/apartment/yert. It. Just. Isn’t. So stop it. Stop the madness.

  2. Chris Connors says:

    This is a neat link that I found at a solar energy workshop for teachers a few weeks ago:
    http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy-and-you/how-clean.html

    What it allows you to do is plug in your zip code, choose your electricity vendor and then see what your generation mix is for the places where you would charge up.

    Becoming more aware is one of the most powerful first steps you can take to bringing on change. If you know that your electricity comes from coal, you can help support alternative generation schemes. This give a bit more info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renewable_Energy_Certificates or http://www.renewablechoice.com/residential.html

    One of the arguments against electric vehicles is that they present a “long tailpipe,” essentially, you are moving the pollution from the car to the smokestack. Even this probably isn’t so bad, because what you are doing is removing the localized pollution from the roads and highways and centralizing it at the power plant. At that point, you could work on making that power plant less of a pollution source through cleaner emissions technology. The writings of Buckminster Fuller were where I heard this idea from, and it still sounds like a good concept, put the pollution in a centralized place, and then scrub it of its valuable resources. Usually, the long tailpipe argument avoids the discussion about fuel or energy economy. Electric cars, if properly designed or converted, tend to have greater miles per gallon equivalent than many gas powered cars.

    At this point, there is an “early adopter tax,” meaning that the people who buy into the electric vehicle idea tend to have to pay more for the vehicle, since it does not match what is currently being manufactured all that well. You can pay with money by buying a 1st gen Tesla, or you can pay with your time (and a bit of money as well) by converting a gas car to electric. Eventually, economies of scale will even that out.

    @hurf, While it is interesting that you “don’t troll in the same waters twice,” you might want to send us some links about the ideas that you believe in. Perhaps you have some other interests that we could share. There are a thousand ways that anyone could screw something up, and maybe four or five that it could be done properly. Lets try to focus on the four or five, and get something done.

    When looking at the question of pollution offsets from transportation fuel sources for his electric car, Noel Perrin had a grid tied photovoltaic array installed on his barn. The pv array was sized to provide at least as much fuel as his electric car used up, and extra sun powered juice flowed into the grid, changing the equation, if even a little bit. Noel may be gone, but his solar panels still have many years left in their expected service.

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