Great Lakes Trip

Great Lakes Trip

On the horizon for next year’s driving trip:

“Great Lakes in a Model 3!”

Of course, a lot of water needs to flow under the bridge before that trip can even be planned. Specifically: Sit in a Model 3 and evaluate it (thanks to @stannous, accomplished in October, 2017!). Test drive a Model 3 (Rode in @SamO's one-day old Black B3auty December 30, 2017. Thanks @SamO!). Note: it actually took until October 18, 2018 for us to test drive the RWD and the P3D. Very satisfying, and confirming that we would have been extremely happy with the RWD, LR, EAP, red version of the Model 3 that we configured April 22, 2018.

Configure and order the largest battery and the autodrive features.

Arrange delivery to Minneapolis , or more likely to son DJ's pole barn, as he lives more than 160 miles from the nearest service center.

Follow up with Michigan Tech (Houghton) re HPWC install we have been working on with folks from Steve’s alma mater. Plan out charging stops, which are scarce along the south rim of Lake Superior. Check out the Sun Country Highway charging route in Canada, then…


(this thread is, we know, premature and preliminary…)

Update: December 22, 2017 Tesla invited us to configure...we replied by e-mail that we are waiting for LR without luxury upgrade package, if possible. And delivery to son DJ's pole barn in upper Michigan

We also learned that a new Supercharger is planned for Escanaba, Steve's home town. Yay!

Plans are coming together for this summer in the Great Lakes area.

We think we will fly into Escanaba, MI around Jun 2 and stay until Sept 9.

First month getting to know the Model 3 and visiting friends and family in the area. Fourth of July, the entire extended family arrives, so we'll relocate to a motel, followed by our first extended trip. Heading east to Mackinac Bridge and staying in Lower Michigan, first in Petoskey, then Frankfort, and Ludington. Superchargers in Traverse City and Ludington and Cadillac.

Back up to the bridge, a tour of Mackinac Island, Saint Ignace, and Sault Sainte Marie, the location of stories of Steve's youth.

Returning to the cottage by late July, then up to Houghton, MI, Steve's alma mater, Michigan Tech. for a reunion in early August.

A visit to Green Bay stadium and the Wisconsin Dells.

Who knows what else we may find? (Note: ship 5 cases of wine before departing San Diego). Acquire WeatherTech mats, TT-30 connector, LED flashlight

Update: April 22, 2018 Configured, Red, Aero wheels, Enhanced Autopilot

Desired delivery: approximately June 10

VIN: none as of June 11

Current air reservations: SAN - ORD - MQT (Marquette, MI) June 9. Frequent flyer tickets, so we can adjust the dates.

June 7, 2018, phoned Tesla Fremont, agent Saum informed us we had been pushed to July. When queried, when in July, he could not state when, before the end of July. He revealed a change in Tesla policy regarding cancellation of configured orders, due to the large number of customers whose orders were being pushed out far beyond the 3-6 week window. Upon receipt of an e-mail containing our street address to mail a check to, $2,500 would be refunded to same credit card used when configuring. $1,000 mailed within 30-60 days. We phoned Friday am, June 8, to ask for the agent, Liz, who had predicted we would have a VIN by June 10 and who said Chicago would be our delivery point, after shipping of 5 days, to send us that in writing. She never did. So, by close of business June 8, we sent the cancellation request. One week later, Liz phoned with a VIN, but could not guarantee delivery at any particular date in July. No problem if the delivery was to take place near our home in San Diego, but sitting in Chicago for weeks at a time was not a good option for us.

We proposed to our family to rent either of their Volts, but this was declined. We can't envision renting ICE cars for the summer. So, June 11, I canceled all hotels for a six week period. We may consider trying again for 2019.

Hmmm, there is a carrot at the end of the rainbow....5 cases of good wines await for next year....

greg | 8 giugno 2018

Hi @sbeggs,
This is not good at all.

Have you considered looking at picking up a short term [near end of] lease of say a Model S [or X] .

I know there are websites where folks who want to exit a lease can list their cars, most have less than 6 months to run, which might tie in well with your timeframes. And could work out cheaper.
I Can't think of any off hand - but they've been posted/mentioned here before.

And of course, you could try and lean on Tesla - they might have a few "near end of lease" models there as well, some folks might be trading up to a newer model, and Tesla has a leased vehicle that needs a home for a few months.

The only issues might then be cost, and/or getting your lease car to the right location to "collect it", but I'd bet there'd be a few takers here who would offer to relocate the car for you at either end of your trip if that was needed.
If only for the chance to have an extended [free] drive in a Tesla.
Hell I'd offer to do it, but I'm not in the US so can't really do much except offer advice from afar.

I know that you don't have a lot of time left to organise it, or to put it off to next [or another] year, if you cancel.

But if I was in your shoes and something did happen before [next years] rescheduled event, I'd kick myself rotten wondering why I didn't try to make it work in 2018.

Either way best of luck, keep us posted.

greg | 8 giugno 2018

Instead of a lease you could buy a CPO (USED) Model S/X, for around the price of your 3, then when you've done with it, you can sell it back [or trade it in to Tesla on your new 3].

There do seem to be some ok deals on CPO Model S' on Tesla website right now. They're not dirt cheap.

But for a several month period of ownership might be workable for an older [but still good] Model S or X.
Note: They would come with free lifetime supercharging too, which would probably be something to consider.

And they do seem to have quick availability thus preserving your trip plans intact.

And as you'd be buying from Tesla they could deliver it where-ever you want it too I'm sure,

johnmann | 8 giugno 2018

Sorry to hear that Tesla has let you down and caused you to feel angry. You are one of the most pleasant people on this forum and I was hoping you would be able to take your planned trip. I’ve been following along with your planning and was looking forward to reading about your trip as it unfolded. Hopefully somehow it can be salvaged, but the outlook seems grim at the moment. I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you.

sbeggs | 11 giugno 2018

Six weeks worth of hotels canceled this morning. Working on air ticket cancellations.

sbeggs | 11 giugno 2018

updated last part of original post.

sbeggs | 11 giugno 2018

You are right. We actually have been poring over the CPOs with the idea that actually another 2014 Model S similar to our T would be great to have for travel, with free supercharging, room up frunk, etc. However, we have heard that it still takes a while to acquire and bring it to the nearest location, which in this case is Chicago. We did find 3 in Chicago area, but have concluded it's just too late, so will try again for next summer, if that is possible for us. Thanks for your concern and suggestions!

M3forMe | 11 giugno 2018

@sbeggs - that's too bad! sorry to hear about the cancellation. So close but so far. :-(

sbeggs | 13 giugno 2018

Thanks, @johnmann,
We are philosophical about it!

MTTPA | 13 giugno 2018

Wow, that's terrible. More than a year of planning down the drain. Hope you get to try again next year.

sbeggs | 14 giugno 2018

Well, Tesla hasn't noticed that we canceled last Friday a week.

Because they're emailing us VIN 34103 and telling us sometime in the last week of June or early July our car will be on its way to Chicago.

A letter is on its way to Fremont containing the cancellation email.

The other employee I sent the cancellation to was probably laid off.

sbeggs | 15 giugno 2018

Spent June 14 burning up the distance via email between San Diego and Fremont. After six exchanges in which they chided me for making air reservations (frequent flyer, so could modify but whatever...), and that 34103 could possibly be delivered June 30th (or much more likely July 2), I told her I hadn't expected Tesla to deliver on time, having put 5 additional weeks on top of the 6 weeks.
But given the difficulty of obtaining flights 4th of July weekend, and the risk to our plan if anything required attention, a part, especially anything major, such as a charge port, etc, we know we would have gotten increasingly stressed as their delivery projection exceeded our 5 week cushion.

sbeggs | 15 giugno 2018

So we made a “Go, No-Go” decision!

sbeggs | 15 giugno 2018

MyTesla now is still showing our Model 3, which has reverted from red back to blue.

Your cancellation request has been received, it says.

sbeggs | 17 giugno 2018


sbeggs | 17 giugno 2018

We are leaning toward getting a CPO twin to the 2014 S85 we have in San Diego, for next summer.

Then, watching to see which variants of the Model 3 come out next spring and in the following year. Not sure which direction we will go in, but if we get a CPO in 2019, then we might trade it in on a Model 3 the following year, or just go with Model 3.

So, for now, we've decided to explore our beautiful city of San Diego in the T this summer.

sbeggs | 19 giugno 2018

The town where Steve attended engineering school at Michigan Tech, Houghton, has experienced severe flooding. We were planning on going August 1. | 19 giugno 2018

Have passed through Houghton a few times on the way to and from Isle Royale National Park that I recommend highly. Don't know about now but years ago one had to plan a trip there a year in advance.

Don't understand your thinking about Model S CPO et al. You should take delivery of a Model 3 ASAP. You don't need AWD. You would be losing money otherwise. If you buy a CPO and then sell it, you lose money. If you don't buy a Model 3 this year, you lose the tax credits from the Feds (50% anyway) and CA. Take delivery in San Diego and save the travel hassle. Enjoy the Model 3 while you plan your next adventure. Tempus fugit.

Did Steve play hockey in college? | 19 giugno 2018

Maybe not CA.

sbeggs | 19 giugno 2018

Interesting comments, @georgehawley. Too late for Model 3,as we totally cancelled our order. Not enough income for Fed tax credits, we would have taken funds from IRA to boost income.

I really didn't want First Production and was just opting for it so we could travel this summer in the Great Lakes. Well, maybe not IN them!

I really want to see if a solid roof, no center console, no premium stereo, long range 3 is available in 2019.

The T is great now here in San Diego for the summer and more trips to the desert this fall.

sbeggs | 19 giugno 2018

No, Steve did not play hockey. But I played hockey on my neighbor's backyard rink in Pittsburgh in the fifties and sixties! | 19 giugno 2018

That counts.

If you are looking a year ahead, think about Isle Royale.

There are no vehicles on the island. There are moose, wolves, and tapeworms. The moose drink the water and become weakened by the worms. The wolves eat the weakened moose. The wolf excretions with tapeworm eggs wash back into the water. Thimbleberries grow wild there. There are kin to raspberries but larger and sweeter. It is really a fascinating place.

sbeggs | 19 giugno 2018

Now George!

Are you trying to add tapeworms to our list of woes? Steve has enough problems! Hint: he can't travel to Mexico any more.

sbeggs | 25 giugno 2018

Now talking about driving the T to Michigan next spring.

Bighorn | 25 giugno 2018

I'm about to take my third trip to Michigan in the last 6 months--get on it already!

sbeggs | 27 giugno 2018

OK @Bighorn, watch out for those Yoopers!

One more point in our plan was Steve's attempt to donate an HPWC to Sigma Rho, his fraternity at Michigan Tech.

He's been telling them to put in 240V to their pole barn. Instead, they dug a 100’ trench with 110V. Then asked him for money to do it over.

He told them, a la Shark Tank, “I'm out.”

sbeggs | 9 luglio 2018

Notice to pick up UPTFOR2 license plates arrived today. Window was 8-12 weeks. This is the 16th week.

Plate has to be associated with a car within 30 days. We don't want to substitute that plate for 14TFOR2, so I suppose we can just pick the plates up, saying we don't yet have the car to assign the plates to.

sbeggs | 12 luglio 2018

Appointment at California DMV this morning. Was told plates are in but they can't give them to me until title or registration details accompany.

Talked my way in to the plate section, where a kind gentleman showed me the dark background with yellow lettering of the classic CA plate.

Photographed UPTFOR2, as a memory of our order.

They will be on hold for six months in case I cave and configure a P3D! (Unlikely).

SamO | 14 luglio 2018

San Diego Supercharger grand opening bump

sbeggs | 14 luglio 2018

We'll attend in your place on July 20.

sbeggs | 6 agosto 2018

Eight weeks after writing cancellation letter, received $1000 check on a Utah Wells Fargo branch.

Bringing this phase to a close!

sbeggs | 9 agosto 2018

Deposited $1000 check 8/8/18.

Haven't seen $2500 refund to credit card yet.

sbeggs | 30 agosto 2018

Just received credit card statement showing $2,500 refund dated July 26.

Six weeks after canceling Model 3 and trip.

$1,000 deposit refund arrived by check at the 8 week point.

SamO | 30 agosto 2018

Just test drove the P3D again after a little ginger ale. I'm sold.

sbeggs | 30 agosto 2018

You didn't get nauseous this time?

sbeggs | 31 agosto 2018

If you're sold, does that mean you've bought?

SamO | 31 agosto 2018


I had the ginger ale before the drive and I didn't take anyone so I never had to sit in the back or passenger seat.

I was on the fence (personally) as to whether I would purchase my other Model 3 or get the X.
If I use my second reservation, I was considering SR3, but now . . . I love the P3D.

I am convinced it is the best performing Tesla and I love it. That said, I'm not 100% sure I'm going to do.

sbeggs | 18 ottobre 2018

Test drive impressions...

sbeggs | 18 ottobre 2018

and @Bighorn,

I thought of you guys this afternoon as I took the P3D out for a spin (wash cycle)!

Impressions of RWD and P3D:
Five years after our first test drive of a P85+, we test drove two Model 3s: RWD and P3D. Route took us from San Diego's Fashion Valley gallery location, onto I-8 W, off at Morena Blvd, return eastward via Friars Rd.

Impressions: both cars are deliciously nimble, agile, responsive, gorgeous. Seat comfort of the white seats was exceptional. Didn't mind the smaller steering wheel. The glass roof didn't let in so much light as to disrupt my eyes and it was very nice. We loved the climate control sliders. Both performed beautiful over speed bumps, with very little objectionable movement.

But I did mind the angle at which the main display sits. I could not see the right hand of the screen much at all, with my driving glasses, and older eyes. Before taking off, one should simply set all the necessary elements in advance, to be comfortable and able to utilize the car properly.

The RWD was on the previous version of software, while the performance version had been updated to version 9, so I saw the ghostly images of people and cars on the left hand section of the screen. The RWD was almost silent, like our Classic S85, while I could easily hear the motors' subtle spool up on the AWD. The P3D acceleration rocks, yet is perfectly stable. There wasn't much room on San Diego's freeways, choked with traffic, to let the car open up, nor any sinuous country roads to enjoy, but I can feel the allure of the P...

The test drive cars were both either black or midnight silver, but the showroom model was red, same as we configured April 22. We took some photos and the business card of Noah, our test drive guide.

Interesting, he says RWD lead time is 4 weeks, with higher trims 8 weeks. I asked about the backlog, as I sorted through my mind what he was implying, that people ordering right now are getting their cars quickly, i.e. other than Europe and China, and short range, all or most orders from before have already been filled, and new people are coming into gallery showrooms and ordering on the spot. He says most new orders right now are Model 3 at his location..

I asked if he ever received feedback from new Model 3 owners on what problems or annoyances they are feeling, such as the cracks to front or rear glass...and he said, no. The main problem people complain about is the display screen! I definitely would set everything up in advance before attempting to stab at the screen to change anything! I'm sure it would be fine after getting used to it.


sbeggs | 20 ottobre 2018

Forgot to say, I was not expecting to love the white interior, especially on a bright, sunny day. Very surprised at how nice it is!

jb1120 | 20 ottobre 2018

In a midnight silver P3D now, having traded in my S70D. So worth the move. Car drives like no other car I’ve been in (and I used to say the same about my Model S). White interior is the bomb. Unfortunately, my Wh/mi is worse than the Model S. Only 659 miles on it now, perhaps that is why.

sbeggs | 20 ottobre 2018


Ja, it's easy to stomp on it, your Wh/mi will simmer down after a while...a long while!

sbeggs | 24 ottobre 2018

The manager of San Diego's delivery center is asking for our impressions of the P3D!

sbeggs | 30 marzo 2019

Well, as it turns out, we are going to the Great Lakes region, but not to tour around in a Model 3. We have to go briefly for a funeral service. Renting a Nissan Versa at Escanaba airport.

texxx | 30 marzo 2019

Escanaba! I bought my first Gen 2 Prius from the Toyota dealer there in 2004. Couldn't find one anywhere near me (Long Island) that wasn't charging at least $3K over list, and even then they were hard to find. Still remember flying in to Escanaba with my seven-year-old daughter to pick up the car. We drove back through parts of Canada, stopped at Niagara Falls, and generally made an adventure out of picking up the car. I still smile every time I think about that trip. Went back two years later and bought a Hybrid Highlander from them, but that was a solo trip and not nearly as much fun. Sorry you're going there under sad circumstances. Beautiful country in the UP.

sbeggs | 30 marzo 2019

Wow! Nice memory for you.

We tried to see if we could rent a Bolt or even a Prius.

No way!

It is beautiful country up there. Steve has lots of family there.

sbeggs | 20 giugno 2019

We flew to Escanaba June 18, 2019, to attend a funeral and a high school reunion. No Model 3, only a lowly Kia Optima. Forgot to turn off engine, swiped wrong stalk to put car in gear. Quite beautiful, the reeds offshore in Little Bay de Noc, an inlet of Lake Michigan.

zcd1 | 21 giugno 2019

Drove my Model 3P round trip from Chicago to Petoskey, MI recently. Loved every minute of the drive. :-)

sbeggs | 21 giugno 2019

How many miles round trip, and did you charge up?

swilliams102 | 21 giugno 2019

@sbeggs I also live in Escanaba and just bought a Tesla M3 last year , I also had to pick it up in Chicago. They were supposed to deliver it through Tesla home delivery but I suggested that they fly me one way to Chicago ($225.00 much cheaper than delivering with a car hauler) and they agreed, you could try that, Also I am listed on “Plug Share” as a charging station, you are more than welcome to stop by to charge if you need to.

sbeggs | 22 giugno 2019

Really nice of you! We canceled our order a year ago when the delivery stretched from the projected 3-6 weeks to 11 weeks or beyond, causing our hotel reservations in northern Michigan to be jeopardized. We had put 5 weeks of slack into the schedule, but not more. We left the Model S at home in San Diego, and just flew up here. Haven't seen your Model 3, or any Teslas here since we arrived June 18. What do you hear about the Supercharger in Escanaba?
Heading for the Stonehouse today for lunch, would you like to meet up?