Charging in Balkhash, Kazakhstan

Meeting Meiram

When we were about to leave Almaty a guy on a brand-new Ducati motorcycle signaled us to stop. We drove to the side of the road and met Meiram. He himself traveled on a motorcycle almost the same route as ours. We will have noticed later that we were extremely fortunate to have met him.

Charging-attempt #1 and #2

Meiram knew people in Balkhash and arranged for us help with charging there. We met our “charging crew” at the city entrance. The first car workshop where we tried to find three-phase electricity, could only offer 16 amperes and Benedikt didn’t really find the earth connection. The next large car-workshop we drove to, was by chance a place where the NomiEV people also charged on their 80 E-days journey.We were excited, when we found a Turkish Style outlet in the workshop. Benedikt re-adjusted the adapter (we used the Montenegro-style plug a few times in Iran. That’s why the plugs of the adapters changed after we left Turkey again – see also this post). The fuses were set for 50 amperes, so we didn’t worry to let the car charge with 32 amperes.

Shortly before we wanted to leave, Benedikt checked the connection again – and there was smoke coming out of the outlet. Uuuuuups. Probably the plugs have not been used for a long time and dead bugs and the same started to slowly burn with the heat of the strong electricity. Since we didn’t want to risk setting the workshop on fire, we stopped charging immediately.

Charging-attempt #3 – finally a success!

There was a fuse-box close to the Turkish-outlet. Since it also had three-phase connections, the plan was to get the electricity from there. As soon as we were about to set this up, Benedikt noticed that he forgot our open adapter, his safety cloves and the screw driver at the first car-workshop we have been to (charging-attempt #1). We opened the Turkish adapter, dissembled it and used the three-phases and the earth connection to set up a new connection on the fuse-box. And voila, charging worked out! Since the cables got a bit worm (the connection cable to the fuse-box seemed to thin), Benedikt wanted to charge only with 25 amperes. That meant, the car needed to charge for the next 3 hours.

We get entertained by the best charging-hosts ever

Our charging-helpers were our hosts during the next 3 hours. They drove us back to the first workshop to pick up our forgotten stuff. Due to language misunderstanding, they also bought us a new screw-driver (we later gave our old one as a “souvenir” to them). After that, we went to a garden restaurant and had a late lunch there. The restaurant was at the shore of lake Balkhash and we went to the beach later. Lake Balkhash is apparently the 15th largest lake on the earth (16,400 km2), but only 26 m maximum deep. The water was therefore really worm (maybe 25 degree Celsius). Before we left Balkhash again, we got a beautifully painted plate of lake Balkhash as a gift to remember the city. We started our continues drive through the Kazakh step with a feeling of gratefulness to have experienced this superb hospitality. Thank you!

outlet/socket Volt Ampere kW kWh
connection to fuse-box 220 volt 3 * 25 amperes 16 kW 50 kWh

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