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CincyMPG presents the first annual MPGfest--Mark your calendars, October 12-13

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CincyMPG presents the first annual MPGfest--Mark your calendars, October 12-13

Old 10-14-2008, 12:57 AM
bwilson4web's Avatar
Engineering first
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 5,613
Default Re: CincyMPG presents the first annual MPGfest--Mark your calendars, October 12-13


In spite of my screw-ups, we had 13 show up and other than the folks who arrived late, the tour was awesome. Of course a factory is an engineer's playground.

It seems Camry Hybrid production is constrained by the supply of batteries. Regardless, there were plenty on the line. They are running two shifts and were making a new vehicle, the "Venza."

My first impression of the Venza, 'Oh look, they've introduced an oversize station wagon just in time for expensive gas.' It is larger than I'd be interested in but the lower height should be OK at highway speeds.

The new Prius factory will be at Blue Springs, Mississippi and planned for 2010. If they have factory tours, that is where I'll be. Georgetown is fun but I'm really interested in hybrids.

Sad to say but the cut-away Camry hybrid model is no longer in the lobby.

Bob Wilson
Old 11-06-2008, 09:40 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 6
Default CincyMPG presents the first annual MPGfest

First MPGfest was a smashing success!

Jud Engels and Auston Hensley - CincyMPG - November 6, 2008

What makes for a successful gathering? 36 members and attendees do

The concept of MPGfest goes back to July of this year where it came to our attention that Bob Wilson would be having a picnic at Jud's the day prior to the annual Toyota plant tour in Georgetown, Kentucky, where Camry Hybrid's are made. Well, if a bunch of people are going to be in town, why not pull everyone together for a great big meet. Not only a hybrid car show but complete with presentations, food, and the whole works? Thus the concept of MPGfest was born. The idea was kicked around a bit in subsequent meetings and came to the forefront in late August and over time the event turned from a dream into a reality. MPGfest succeeded beyond even my wildest dreams and probably well past everyone else's expectations as well.

We had a total of three planning sessions to make sure everything was hammered out properly. Jud brought the majority of the fixins, burgers, dogs, drinks, etc. Also he brought Wayne Mitchell and Jay on board to present at the meeting. I helped with the pubbing and got Wayne Gerdes and Brent Quebman lined up for presentations as well. Wayne Mitchell brought a world-class prime rib--any description doesn't do it justice, it really defied words. You had to have been there. Hadi lived up to his name as master chef of the barbeque. Brent Engels was in charge of registration.

The arrivals began trickling in on Saturday evening, first with Kacey Green and Wayne Mitchell, who brought the aforementioned prime rib. Others arrived during the night. At about 1 AM, I snuck back into Jud's driveway to let the air out of Wayne's (xcel) tires. Seeing as his Accord wasn't even there, I let the air out of Jud's tires instead. Made sure they were properly inflated at the door placard of 32 PSI.

Then Sunday morning: finding Wayne's Accord sitting there in the driveway, I also did the dastardly deed to him. It took a while to let his tires down from (somewhere unmentionable) PSI. But it was all good since he slept like a baby the entire time. Joe Drolet arrived in his Ford Ranger and we quickly got the grill and related supplies up to the park. The open period with registration began shortly after the core membership had arrived. As Wayne (xcel) appointed himself as the tire pressure police, Buck Reimer arrived with a Jetta TDI to complement an '06 already on-site. Pat, Jean, Adam, Roger, and the whole crew arrived over the next hour.

The most Priuses I have ever seen collected in one place.

VW TDI's onsite at MPGfest.

First on our agenda was Jay Groh's presentation of the Hymotion, a battery pack designed to extend the Prius's all-electric range to nearly 30 miles as well as allow the vehicle to be plugged in overnight. It began as a "Here is my battery: Any questions?" and the related questions filled up the entire time slot. And I liked how his Prius was a rolling billboard for Bob Barr's presidental campaign

Second on our agenda was Brent Quebman from energyQue, a local company dedicated to conserving home energy, including "how-to's" and advice, as well as offering energy audits. Since both improving gas mileage and saving on home energy are closely related the presentation fit perfectly.

Third on our list was Wayne Gerdes (xcel) and hypermiling. The presentation was a complete breakdown of Beating the EPA - The Why's and How's to Hypermile and an illustration of the benefits that can be obtained from various hypermiling techniques. I have a feeling that he will have to update his gas price pictures downwards yet again.

"Speed Kills Fuel Economy."

Lunch was next. As before, Hadi assumed his title as master chef of the barbecue, along with Brent Engels, they grilled up burgers, dogs, and an excellent prime rib.

Inside the hood of Kacey's brand new '09 HCH-II.

The last presentation after lunch was Wayne Mitchell's excellent Prius battery teardown.

After this, there was some more open time, during which there were some tires that desperately needed to be pressed up and some clinics to do. This took up most of the next two hours or so.

Then the fuel economy challenge began.

We used four Prius all set up close to the same at start (sorry Aaron, I know your SOC was a little lower than others). There were 3 people in each Prius and we took turns driving the course. This was a 5.2 mile course through the streets of Ft. Thomas, Kentucky. Cars started and ended in the parking lot next to the pavilion. Out of the park, right on Ft. Thomas Avenue (a four lane road) for one mile before making a u-turn on a side street, turn around, follow Ft. Thomas Avenue the other way until it merges with US 27 and follow for a mile, then turn around back to the park.

(Jay used his Hymotion and thus burned no gas at all.)

Name: MPG
Jud: 177 MPG
Auston: 164 MPG
Roger: 161 MPG
Hadi: 146 MPG
Wayne: 138 MPG
Aaron: 91.7 MPG
Jesse: 68.0 MPG
Andy: 57.8 MPG

After this most of the activity came to a close. Some members had to leave, the remainder retired to Jud's for the night. For most of the remainder of the night, some drives were taken but mostly consisted of just us making small-talk for the entire time.

All in all MPGfest succeeded beyond our wildest dreams and went down very smoothly. Stay tuned for future CincyMPG events and gatherings.
Old 11-06-2008, 08:39 PM
Energy Independence
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Richardson, TX
Posts: 1,282
Default Re: CincyMPG presents the first annual MPGfest--Mark your calendars, October 12-13

Excellent write-up and pics!
Looks like you had yourselves a great event.
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