# Inside Tesla's Gigafactory

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##### Well-Known Member
Another great post! Thanks Winston. My wife asked me this morning if I had any info Tesla's Gigafactory, and I said yes, then I showed her your post. You made me look good again. Thanks

#### Winston

##### Lorenzo von Matterhorn
Another great post! Thanks Winston. My wife asked me this morning if I had any info Tesla's Gigafactory, and I said yes, then I showed her your post. You made me look good again. Thanks
Either a wife with a broad (no pun intended) interest in technology, or a hubby who doesn't understand that this is an open thread and trying to be funny. Lucky, I don't care. I post stuff I find technically interesting.

##### Well-Known Member
The answer is yes to both of your questions. I really do enjoy your posts and I find it odd that I'm the only one that thanks you.

#### John Beans

##### Founder, Jolly Logic
TRF Supporter
There's a iive stream tonight. Party starts at 6pm PST, but I think the talking part starts at 9pm PST. Elon tweated to go to tesla.com for the live stream.

#### jd2cylman

##### Still not Carl... ;-)
TRF Supporter
The answer is yes to both of your questions. I really do enjoy your posts and I find it odd that I'm the only one that thanks you.
I agree. I read a lot of Winston's posts, but honestly most are over my head one way or another. Keep up the interesting posts Winston! This one was interesting to me from strictly a farm boy point of view; 3200 acres is a LOT of ground...

#### Buckeye

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
"Does Elon Musk have more money than sense? Or could it actually be more sense than money?"

The jury is still out on this one. Musk should now realize that the automobile biz is tougher than he first thought.

#### John Beans

##### Founder, Jolly Logic
TRF Supporter
For folks who are skeptical about what Tesla is doing, the themes of "Tesla will need a lot more capital" or "that business will never be profitable" are popular.
However, the capital markets seem pretty willing to fund TSLA. And as of March 31 it appears customers (the most important indicator) do as well.

If you are a fan of manufacturing, you have to love TSLA's mindset. They are saying, "The design of the factory is more critical than the design of the product."
There is a deep appreciation of manufacturing at work here, and over the next couple of years the story of TSLA will be one of a re-birth and re-imagining of manufacturing, as much as the specific products themselves (cars, trucks, batteries, solar panels).

As a side note, there is a fair amount of Tesla-hating these days. Lots of reasons for this, but I think the biggest ones are:

1. People associate Tesla with climate change politics
2. Tesla cars put software front and center (literally), and even allow the software to drive (some)

So there are plenty of folks who cringe at Tesla cars, and say things like:
1. "I enjoy driving myself, why would I want the car to do it?"
2. "Why would I need a big screen in my car?"
3. "Gas is more convenient than recharging, and it's cheap."
4. "Only a tree-hugger would drive one of those."

People have grown used to thinking of electric cars as only popular with the climate change crowd, and not very popular in general. But when 373,000 people signed up in the first week of April for Tesla's Model 3, it should have been apparent to everyone that something new was happening.

My assessment of what happened (based on market research from reservation holders) is that Tesla has crossed over to the mainstream, in a big way. The primary motivation for reservation holders was, in a word, "technology." These are people who want a big map in their car with live traffic on it. Who want to play their song lists they have on their phone. Who want to cool down / heat up their car while they are still at the breakfast table in the morning. Who want cruise control that works really well in traffic.

There are other reasons, too. Secondarily they are people who like to feel more independent. They want to refuel their car themselves. Add $X00 to their power bill each year, stop paying$X,000 at the gas station. Stop paying for oil and brake changes (the only significant maintenance items on Teslas are the tires). Tesla literally has a motto that they think car companies should not make money on service (sorry if you work at a dealership).

Third, there are folks who really a dig a car that can go 0-60 in "super car" times. And that doesn't look half bad. I mean, early electric cars, including BMWs models, are not easy on the eyes, if you know what I mean. They look more like toasters than sports cars.

#### Buckeye

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
For folks who are skeptical about what Tesla is doing, the themes of "Tesla will need a lot more capital" or "that business will never be profitable" are popular.
However, the capital markets seem pretty willing to fund TSLA. And as of March 31 it appears customers (the most important indicator) do as well.

If you are a fan of manufacturing, you have to love TSLA's mindset. They are saying, "The design of the factory is more critical than the design of the product."
There is a deep appreciation of manufacturing at work here, and over the next couple of years the story of TSLA will be one of a re-birth and re-imagining of manufacturing, as much as the specific products themselves (cars, trucks, batteries, solar panels).

As a side note, there is a fair amount of Tesla-hating these days. Lots of reasons for this, but I think the biggest ones are:

1. People associate Tesla with climate change politics
2. Tesla cars put software front and center (literally), and even allow the software to drive (some)

So there are plenty of folks who cringe at Tesla cars, and say things like:
1. "I enjoy driving myself, why would I want the car to do it?"
2. "Why would I need a big screen in my car?"
3. "Gas is more convenient than recharging, and it's cheap."
4. "Only a tree-hugger would drive one of those."

People have grown used to thinking of electric cars as only popular with the climate change crowd, and not very popular in general. But when 373,000 people signed up in the first week of April for Tesla's Model 3, it should have been apparent to everyone that something new was happening.

My assessment of what happened (based on market research from reservation holders) is that Tesla has crossed over to the mainstream, in a big way. The primary motivation for reservation holders was, in a word, "technology." These are people who want a big map in their car with live traffic on it. Who want to play their song lists they have on their phone. Who want to cool down / heat up their car while they are still at the breakfast table in the morning. Who want cruise control that works really well in traffic.

There are other reasons, too. Secondarily they are people who like to feel more independent. They want to refuel their car themselves. Add $X00 to their power bill each year, stop paying$X,000 at the gas station. Stop paying for oil and brake changes (the only significant maintenance items on Teslas are the tires). Tesla literally has a motto that they think car companies should not make money on service (sorry if you work at a dealership).

Third, there are folks who really a dig a car that can go 0-60 in "super car" times. And that doesn't look half bad. I mean, early electric cars, including BMWs models, are not easy on the eyes, if you know what I mean. They look more like toasters than sports cars.
Nope. None of the above. The issue I have with Tesla is Musk's arrogance and the fanboys who hang on his every word. The guy has yet to make a profit on Tesla, even with a nice gift from the American taxpayers. His market projections on the Model 3 are delusional. His suspensions are flawed. A guy died in one of the driver-less cars. Not everything Musk touches turns to gold.

While people line up to buy a Model 3 to be available God knows when, the Chevy Bolt (the first 300 mile, $30K EV) will be available within 6 months from now. Yep, old Rustbelt GM beats Musk to the punch. Autonomous vehicles, big screens, electric vehicles, and tree-hugger sentiment are hardly unique to Tesla and have been around longer than Musk. Silicon Valley "geniuses" alone can not make a car. Musk had to raid Detroit talent to get Tesla this far. I will agree with Musk on auto dealerships. The state franchising laws need to be blown up. #### John Beans ##### Founder, Jolly Logic TRF Supporter It's been a long time since so many people got excited about a car. Certainly there's not *that* much excitement around the Bolt, even though it seems like it will be a pretty good car, and they will sell plenty of them. The purpose of that list of stuff I typed was just to try to relate some things I had learned by polling reservation holders directly. What surprised me was that Model 3 reservation enthusiasts most closely identify as "techies," rather than conservationists. And there is a healthy smattering of "motor heads" in there, too. Those two groups aren't that excited about the technology or the performance of the Bolt, or of other electric cars on the market (other than very expensive Teslas). #### manixFan ##### Not a rocket scientist None of the above. The issue I have with Tesla is Musk's arrogance and the fanboys who hang on his every word. The guy has yet to make a profit on Tesla, even with a nice gift from the American taxpayers. Hmm, let's see now, what gift did GM get from the American taxpayers? "In total$51 billion taxpayer money has gone in the GM bailout"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Motors_Chapter_11_reorganization

Regardless of whether or not they've paid it back or not, GM would not exist if it were not for the largesse of the American Taxpayer.

You've made it clear in your prior posts that you do not like Musk for whatever reason. Your tirade against him personally gets very tiring. Notice you said "GM beats Musk", not GM beats Tesla"? And until the Volt is actually selling, GM hasn't beaten him to anything. Vaporware vs. Vaporware.

We get that you do not like Musk and Tesla. You somehow think he thought the Automobile business would be easy. Who are you to know how hard he thought it would be? How do you feel about his success with SpaceX so far? Or does your dislike of the man blind you to his accomplishments there as well?

And you don't even get your facts right. A man did not die in one of his 'driver-less cars' as you claim. No Tesla is driverless. He was supposed to be monitoring his car and was killed when a semi-truck turned in front of him. From the reports it's clear the semi is at fault and it's not obvious that a fully engaged driver would have been able to stop in time.

And can you please direct us to an example of Musk's arrogance? I've watched several interviews with him and have never seen him display any arrogance. You have mentioned his arrogance several times so there must be ample examples of it.

Your willingness to jump into a thread for no reason other than to bash Musk is unbecoming to you and diminishes your credibility. Your first post in this thread was completely unrelated to the topic at hand and clearly a personal attack directed at Musk. I don't know why you have such a personal axe to grind with him but when you derail a thread with your ad hominem attacks it diminishes the value your opinion in other threads and of the forum in general.

Tony

#### Buckeye

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Your first post in this thread was completely unrelated to the topic
Hmm. My first post quoted the very first line of the article posted by the OP. Tesla Gigafactory includes the word Tesla, and Tesla is an automobile, right? John Beans expanded the thread to a broader sense of automobiles and what people like/dislike about Tesla. How am I off-topic, in the Watering Hole of all places?

Since you are keen observer of my all my posts, you will see that I rarely (if ever?) mention SpaceX. I know very little about it, so I don't comment on it. Seems really cool, though.

I do know a little about cars, so I thrown in my 2 cents here and there. OK, I will now refer to GM as "Mary Barra" to be consistent. Though you must admit that Musk is the face of his products more than most CEOs, hence my synonymous use of his name and his company.

Perhaps you know Musk personally, or my "fanboy" jab struck a nerve for you to come to such a strong defense of the man. I don't know.

I don't make much connection between Watering Hole posts and knowledge of rocketry. You apparently do, so, feel free to ignore me throughout the forum. I will still read your comments, as I may learn something to improve my modeling.

#### manixFan

##### Not a rocket scientist
Hmm. My first post quoted the very first line of the article posted by the OP. Tesla Gigafactory includes the word Tesla, and Tesla is an automobile, right? John Beans expanded the thread to a broader sense of automobiles and what people like/dislike about Tesla. How am I off-topic, in the Watering Hole of all places?....
You are the only one who brought up Musk before I replied. Read John's posts and he does not mention him once. I'm not a fanboy of Musk - I am just turned off when a thread devolves into personal attacks for no reason.

I'll refer back to a question which you have not answered. Please cite an example of how you think Elon Musk is arrogant. That seems to be the crux of your complaint so please help enlighten us as to why you feel that way.

And I am making a connection between the watering hole and rocketry. If you met the owner of a rocketry related company and found him arrogant would you then post about him and project your dislike of him onto his company and products? From your posts on Musk and Tesla you give the impression that you would. Or is Musk an exception and you treat everyone else fairly? This is a community, your personality follows you regardless of forum.

This exact same thing happened in this thread in which you participated (you even made the same comment about the Bolt beating Tesla) - it devolved into a series of personal attacks on Musk and Tesla that were completely unrelated to the thread. This thread WAS about a gigafactory. With your able help we have both derailed it into a discourse on Musk and ad hominem attacks. To those who were interested in the factory, my apologies.

Tony

#### John Beans

##### Founder, Jolly Logic
TRF Supporter
I got a lot less out of the Gigagactory livestream and trip reports (so far) than I thought I would.
Steve Jurvetson's photos of the Panasonic machinery were interesting. I shouldn't have been surprised, but they were more "batch" oriented than I had expected. I was thinking everything would be more continuous, but if I thought about it, it makes sense that there is pressure molding of stuff, and it would have to be done in a closed vessel.

#### Reinhard

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
I got a lot less out of the Gigagactory livestream and trip reports (so far) than I thought I would.
Steve Jurvetson's photos of the Panasonic machinery were interesting. I shouldn't have been surprised, but they were more "batch" oriented than I had expected. I was thinking everything would be more continuous, but if I thought about it, it makes sense that there is pressure molding of stuff, and it would have to be done in a closed vessel.

This might be some auxiliary stuff (or it has yet to be integrated). I don't see any hints for automation (automated material handling, closed construction to keep fingers away, etc.). I also wonder if Tesla/Panasonic is willing to show it's core technology for manufacturing.

Reinhard

#### boatgeek

<snip>
While people line up to buy a Model 3 to be available God knows when, the Chevy Bolt (the first 300 mile, $30K EV) will be available within 6 months from now. Yep, old Rustbelt GM beats Musk to the punch. Autonomous vehicles, big screens, electric vehicles, and tree-hugger sentiment are hardly unique to Tesla and have been around longer than Musk. Silicon Valley "geniuses" alone can not make a car. Musk had to raid Detroit talent to get Tesla this far. Two points of order. GM isn't claiming 300 mile range for the Bolt, as yet it's ">200" as far as I can see with a quick search. I'm happy to be corrected, though. Tesla "raided" Detroit talent by offering them either more money or a more exciting place to work. They didn't come through with a Viking longship and carry off Delphi engineers by the hundreds to be their thralls (although that would have made great TV). Everyone who joined Tesla presumably thought that the new opportunity was a better deal than their old one. Off my soapbox now. I personally think that the 200-mile range at a price middle-class families can afford will be a game-changer for electric cars, whether it comes from Chevy or Tesla. I own a Leaf, and have had several people tell me that they need just a little more than 70-100 miles range to be able to make their commutes work. The Leaf is perfect for me--I have a 25-mile round trip commute at 2 cents a mile in electricity cost. #### Peartree ##### Cyborg Rocketeer Staff member Administrator Global Mod I personally think that the 200-mile range at a price middle-class families can afford will be a game-changer for electric cars, whether it comes from Chevy or Tesla. I own a Leaf, and have had several people tell me that they need just a little more than 70-100 miles range to be able to make their commutes work. The Leaf is perfect for me--I have a 25-mile round trip commute at 2 cents a mile in electricity cost. I personally feel as if I am sitting on the sidelines on this one. It is interesting to watch the technology develop, but the way our household uses vehicles makes it unlikely that electrics will be viable for us in the foreseeable future. We have two cars. One is a passenger car that is called upon to make long trips of 500 miles or more at least yearly, and trips of over a hundred miles (one way) almost weekly. The other is our "heavy hauler" (actually a Ford Explorer) that gets used like a pickup truck and pulls our cargo trailer. Although my "commute" tends to be less than five miles and *most* of my "business mileage" accumulates on trips of less than twenty miles, buying a third "commuter" car simply isn't cost effective after considering insurance, etc. #### James Duffy ##### Well-Known Member It's been a long time since so many people got excited about a car. Certainly there's not *that* much excitement around the Bolt, even though it seems like it will be a pretty good car, and they will sell plenty of them. There's plenty of excitement around the Bolt, although it pales in comparison to the Model 3. Here's a prediction: GM will do a great job marketing the Bolt, driving interest and demand to dealer showrooms. That's where the whole thing will fall apart. The US franchised dealer paradigm is not only woefully ill-prepared to sell a product like the Bolt, but many (most?) dealers are in fact resistant to the idea of a product that requires any degree of explanation or evangelization. James #### Charles_McG ##### Ciderwright but many (most?) dealers are in fact resistant to the idea of a product that requires any degree of explanation or evangelization. James I feel that way about craft alcohol. #### manixFan ##### Not a rocket scientist Nope. None of the above. The issue I have with Tesla is Musk's arrogance and the fanboys who hang on his every word. The guy has yet to make a profit on Tesla, even with a nice gift from the American taxpayers. His market projections on the Model 3 are delusional. His suspensions are flawed. A guy died in one of the driver-less cars. Not everything Musk touches turns to gold. While people line up to buy a Model 3 to be available God knows when, the Chevy Bolt (the first 300 mile,$30K EV) will be available within 6 months from now. Yep, old Rustbelt GM beats Musk to the punch.

Autonomous vehicles, big screens, electric vehicles, and tree-hugger sentiment are hardly unique to Tesla and have been around longer than Musk. Silicon Valley "geniuses" alone can not make a car. Musk had to raid Detroit talent to get Tesla this far.

I will agree with Musk on auto dealerships. The state franchising laws need to be blown up.
As they say on Reddit: 'aged like milk'.

Tony

"As of March 2020, the Tesla Model 3 is the world's best-selling electric car in history, with more than 500,000 units delivered"

From data on the below website, it looks like GM has sold around 85,000 Bolts worldwide:

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##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Long memories around here........

#### manixFan

##### Not a rocket scientist
I guess I could have added in the market valuations of each company, but that would just be mean.

Tony

#### Cnorm

##### Well-Known Member
I guess I could have added in the market valuations of each company, but that would just be mean.

Tony
If you do, don't also point out how long each company has been in business (length of time to achieve their current market valuation). That would just be downright cruel.

#### neil_w

##### Back in the game
TRF Supporter
Honestly, market valuations mainly reflect the rather volatile sentiments of a highly irrational market, *especially* with regard to TSLA. Of all Tesla's incredibly impressive accomplishments, that's the one I'd be least inclined to trumpet, except perhaps to the shorts, who deserve all misery that can be heaped upon them.

#### OverTheTop

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Thanks for posting Winston. Love your posts when I want to have a look around at some other technology stuff.

#### Reinhard

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Honestly, market valuations mainly reflect the rather volatile sentiments of a highly irrational market, *especially* with regard to TSLA. Of all Tesla's incredibly impressive accomplishments, that's the one I'd be least inclined to trumpet, except perhaps to the shorts, who deserve all misery that can be heaped upon them.
Nikola went past Ford in market value without even selling a single car yet.

Makes TSLA rational in comparison, but even Elon says it's overvalued. Tesla has lots of room to grow in addition to what it has already achieved, but I guess it will take a while until it catches up with its valuation.

Reinhard

#### Funkworks

##### Low Earth Orbit, obstructing Earth's view of Venus
Woah, this thread is 4 years old. Anyway, I like all kinds of cars but magnets are pretty cool. And most car manufacturers now have at least one EV model so that's pretty interesting too.

Tony

#### manixFan

##### Not a rocket scientist
I hope they are able to resolve the issue, we need more succesful EV lines.

Tony

#### manixFan

##### Not a rocket scientist

Not a good sign for GM's EV plans.

Tony