• Aug 5, 2013
Plug In America worked hard to keep the federal infrastructure tax credit for EV charge stations active through 2013, but when the price of a home charger drops to $109, a 30-percent credit isn't that big of a deal. Sure, there are a lot of caveats here, but the cost of getting your home ready to charge your EV is certainly dropping.

The charger in question here is the Electric Motor Werks (EMW) JuiceBox, an open source, Level 2 (15kW) EV charging station with a J1772 connector. There are two different versions available, Base and Premium, and they come pre-assembled or DIY. The prices were lower during the successful Kickstarter campaign that ended a few weeks ago, but now the Juiceboxes start at $139.00 each. That's for the unassembled Base model. Get it assembled $239 or go Premium for $249. Premium Assembled is $359. Installation is extra, of course.

The difference between Base and Premium is that the Premium has a different enclosure type, time-of-day charging ability, remote control and an LCD display. Both models use an Arduino microcontroller, offer up to 60A 15kW of power, are Wi-Fi ready and are open source, which potentially opens the door to extensions from EMW or outside developers. The first JuiceBoxes should be ready for new customers in September.

emw juice box


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 21 Comments
      Rotation
      • 1 Year Ago
      These guys don't know 2013 LEAF is a 6kW charger instead of 6.6. They don't know you can't run a 50A (12kW) EVSE off a NEMA 14-50R (or 6-50R). You'd have to be a fool.
        paulwesterberg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Rotation
        Yea, Nissan is totally lying about the 6.6kW charger on their website: http://www.nissanusa.com/buildyournissan/vehicle-images/2013/LEF/XGC30NIC161B0/86af6e8d035525132087a1c7d9b913e1/LEAF/SV/6.6-kW-Onboard-Charger/Performance Because they love class action lawsuits.
          Rotation
          • 1 Year Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          Yes, Nissan is totally lying about the 6.6kW charger on their website. I have one, I've measured it with a Fluke clampmeter myself and I've seen the figures on ChargePoint chargers every time I plug my car in. evseupgrade.com measured it too. It maxes out at 27A. That's not 6.6kW.
      Ryan
      • 1 Year Ago
      I was considering it, and I think they have a better display than the 'professional' ones. The problem comes if there is a fire, your insurance company will say that it wasn't UL certified and won't pay for your house or car. I could probably install a 240V/40A outlet too without a permit, but if something goes wrong, I don't want to be screwed.
      paulwesterberg
      • 1 Year Ago
      The nice thing about this charger(in theory) is that it can be set work within the limits of a given circuit. For instance you might charge at home at 40A normally, but when traveling you could take the charger with you and charge at a 30A RV circuit in a campground. You set the charger to draw less power so it doesn't overwhelm the circuit.
      noevfud
      • 1 Year Ago
      Open source EVSE units are not new and these kits have been out there for a long time. The average consumer should not be assembling HV EVSE equipment and the low leader price is very misleading. In addition this unit is not tested or certified so there are issues with that as well for some folks. Just a week or so ago they were still going to build this with no GFCI protection at all, this is a key feature of an EVSE itself. To omit this was a clear disregard for the safety of consumers and shows how this company is more concerned about price than safely. Really shows the mindset of their engineering and marketing. This unit is not something for the general public and is very misleading in more than one way. Cheap does not mean safe and I think this will be purchased by many of the wrong buyers. Just wait to see what happens when the average Joe makes a high resistance terminal connection and there is a melt down or worse. Even with properly engineered and tested products this can be an issue. An EVSE is a key piece of safety equipment, something they ignored right out of the gate and were quickly forced to resolve.
        Anderlan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @noevfud
        "The average consumer should not be assembling HV EVSE equipment" The average car OEM should be providing this crap for free then. Tesla sells their cars with a cord that goes in a standard 220V wall socket. So why aren't all the cheaper brands doing it?
          Anderlan
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Anderlan
          3rd party EVSE's are a speed bump in EV deployment.
          Dave R
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Anderlan
          You mean a 240V outlet, but yes, their charge cord works on anything from 120V -> 240V and you can buy adapters for many types of outlets directly from Tesla. No other plug-in manufacturer does this.
          Anderlan
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Anderlan
          And a cash cow for some companies that I can't understand why hasn't been slaughtered earlier.
          Rotation
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Anderlan
          Because Tesla' cost a heck of a lot more. Yes, if you spend another $40K on your EV, then you will also get a charger "for free". It's funny you think there is a such thing as a standard 220V wall socket. There are at least 5 different ones.
      Giza Plateau
      • 1 Year Ago
      To circumvent the so far very expensive J1772 cables they should develop a j1772 handle that has all the functionality in it so you can just use standard 2 wire cable from a wall plug. That way it's also portable. J1772 is just a relay triggered by a signal. A glorified extension cord. There is no need for a display or a box. Mass produced this could and should literally be a 50$ retail unit. In soviet russia, j1772 buy you..
        skierpage
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Giza Plateau
        Smarts in the handle is a neat idea. But it's misleading (also known as lying) to claim "J1772 is just a relay triggered by a signal." How do you think that signal happens? Come on, show us your circuit that modulates a 12V square wave to initiate the protocol, responds to the vehicle, communicates the max current draw, then triggers the $7.50 30A relay. You can read about the J1772 signaling protocol at open-evse on Google code. It's a neat site, they have open hardware and software and sell a controller for $125, and a kit with most of the rest of the parts for $212.
      Richard Lam
      • 1 Year Ago
      I would NOT recommend people to use the cord that came with their level 1 EVSE. That cord most likely has a much thinner gauge of wire not desifned for level 2 powers and would be a HUGE fire risk. That is dangerous advice.
        Dave R
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Richard Lam
        As long as you don't push more current than the stock EVSE you'll be fine. Of course, you have to know what you're doing!
      DaveMart
      • 1 Year Ago
      Frying tonight!
      Rotation
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have no idea why. It comes without the power cable & probe and if you buy the power cable/probe, it's about the same price as other chargers on the market. And it's not UL certified and built from plans that explicitly say they are for testing only. In short, there really is one born every minute. Go get yourself a Schneider Electric or Siemens charger from home depot for $800.
        paulwesterberg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Rotation
        The total cost of this setup is $627 and it can charge at 60A. The disappointing thing is that the large electronics manufacturers are overcharging for their underdeveloped products.
          Rotation
          • 1 Year Ago
          @paulwesterberg
          Where did you get that figure from? As to it being 60A, using "can" is presumptive. They only have 30A models so far, they say the final one will be 60A. Time will tell.
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