Monday 20 April 2020

Electric Environment Elixir (1)

But First, Caveat Emptor
Remember that embarrassing gap outside the end terrace at Peterville, offing residents a plunge to their demise as they visited the privvy in their back yard.
The framework for a bit of extra retaining wall is now ready and all that is necessary is to cover the wood with "stone" blocks and add a little more quarry face. Wills do "dressed Victorian paving" which doubles as stone blocks; available four sheets at £4.15 from Peco along the road at Beer.
But Peco have shut up shop completely (even on-line) for the duration, so fbb has had to resort to EBay.

What a catalogue of horrors!

Can we do a bit better than £4.15? How about £3.95?
With £5.95 "shipping" - no fear!

What about £14.85? Really! £14.85 for four slices of moulded plastic that normally sell for about £4?
It does offer a £2.21 reduction and free postage - no chance with knobs on.

With free postage - more like it!

Then fbb spotted this one
£3.85 plus £1 postage. Duly ordered and only 70p more than Peco's shop price.

Caveat emptor indeed.

Electric Environmental Elixir
The development of electricity as a source of power was, indeed, the wonder of the age.
The first electric cars appeared in the 1880s ...
... followed soon by battery electric trams. Magnus Volk of Brighton built himself an electric car ...
... and constructed the first electric railway in the world along the town's sea front - a railway that still bears his name.
Once power could be delivered to the vehicle by wire or rail and the battery because unnecessary, trams, trains and trolleybuses proliferated.
We must not forget that the UK has always had a great love for the electric delivery van, some appearing in the early 1900s ...
... and developing into the ubiquitous milk float.
In some places, bread was likewise delivered electrically.
As an aside, fbb does wonder why it was always a milk float but never a bread float?

The growing concerns about air quality have re-opened the desire for today's modern electric vehicles. But building a tramway is laborious and expensive; trolleybuses less so but still costly. Hence the desire to build and use a cost-effective electric bus.

The problems have not changed from the days of accumulator trams in Paris. You have to "waste" a whole heap of energy carting batteries around; and you have to recharge, often more than once in a 24 hour period.

Most of the current batch of electric vehicles shares technology with milk and bread delivery - they are plugged in at the depot overnight. Here is just a (non exhaustive?) selection of modern plug and play bus fleets.

YORK Park and Ride
As far as fbb can remember (a distance that is reducing slowly with the advancement of years!) all the above are "plug and play" usually overnight at the depot - although York's Poppleton Park and Ride was blessed with chargers at the parking site as illustrated above.

So tomorrow we look at two charging systems which work somewhat differently - one apparently successfully and one somewhat less so.

 Next Electrified blog : Tuesday 21st April 


  1. Andrew Kleissner20 April 2020 at 06:54

    It's true that an electric vehicle has to cart around heavy batteries - on the other hand a true electric (not a hybrid) presumably saves some weight by not having an internal combustion engine, cooling system and fuel tank? (I would assume that an all-electric drive train is lighter, but I may be wrong).

  2. I think float refers to an open flat loading deck.