Report: Tesla Gigafactory Delayed? Elon Musk’s Twitter To The Rescue!

MAR 9 2015 BY JAY COLE 18

Tesla Gigafactory Today (Image Via Steve Jurvetson - CC-2.0)

Tesla Gigafactory In March (Image Via Steve Jurvetson – CC-2.0)

Over the weekend, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported on a couple union job postings and a hours rollback statement to indicate construction was delayed at Tesla’s Gigafactory in Nevada.

Tesla Gigafactory Not So Long Ago

Tesla Gigafactory Not So Long Ago

The Gazette went on to say that earlier this year, the job board for the IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) updated its listing for “Project Tiger” (code for Tesla’s factory):

“The Tiger Project has been cut back by 80% at this time,” said the post, but also noted that” This is all subject to change.”

While the local union branch (IBEW Local 401) in Reno also reported:

“The major project in the area has been delayed at this time. Further updates will be posted as soon as we know more.”

At the heart of the issue is whether or not original plans had changed, as a Tesla spokesperson said that the company was currently “on schedule”, while the secretary and treasurer of Building & Construction Trades Council, Paul McKenzie stated at about the same time, “I can confirm that there has been a reduction in hours and that’s all I can say.”

Then Tesla CEO Elon Musk parted the clouds and swooped in like no one else could, and tweeted (naturally) his opinion.

Mr. Musk stated matter-of-factly that everything was A-OK and on track with the project, while also giving the media a little dig – for what we thought was actually some fairly decent investigatory reporting.   (Full report from the Reno Gazette-Journal here)

Tesla CEO Tweets His Feelings On Report Of Company Gigafactory Delay

Tesla CEO Tweets His Feelings On Report Of Company Gigafactory Delay

Well, Mr. Musk briefly let all his feelings be known anyway.

The second tweet didn’t survive on his twitter very long (but we caught it).   Perhaps the CEO had a change of heart and redirected his displeasure with the “media” to the union and trades council – offline.

Since then, an impromptu photo gallery of a recent Gigafactory tour given by Tesla for high-level execs and VIPs was posted by board member Steve Jurvetson.

Reno Gazette-Journal, Hat tip Anthony Fiti!

 

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18 Comments on "Report: Tesla Gigafactory Delayed? Elon Musk’s Twitter To The Rescue!"

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Construction may not be delayed but the rollback of jobs indicates that plant capacity will be nowhere near full.

The “jobs” in question are not permanent jobs, they’re construction jobs. It has nothing to do with plant capacity.

Not only that, it’s union jobs. Could be non-union contractor got work that a union guy had or the union thought they would get. This article is a strong reach that could have easily been verified or negated.

Both groups can be right.

GigaF build out goes as planned.

But need for workforce was at last measured, and electricians are not so needed.

One group implies less work for electricians at the moment implies an overall construction slowdown.

That appears not to be the case. Just less work for electricians.

as the construction jobs are cut back – it could be that construction is actually ahead of schedule. Who can tell.

They may have juggled the construction schedule for some reason, moved some things forward while pushing some things (including electrical work) back. There could be any number of reasons for the change. One possibility is a temporary shortage of supplies needed for the electrical work, or supplies needed for what the electrical work is supposed to go into. Another possibility is simply choosing to prioritize something else.

This is a large construction project. Anybody who thinks everything will proceed exactly according to the original schedule, doesn’t know much about how large construction projects proceed.

Looks like a metal-fab building now and steel girder structure. Kind of a giant shed. Electrician needs would follow when they start to get walls up and demarcate the internal areas of the building. Wasn’t the issue regarding electrician work? The primary work that appears there now is bulldozer/crane/assembly guys. The building looks big but it is not anywhere near the target size identified by the site drawings and scope intended. It is going to get bigger if they pull it off.

FYI, this building is only the pilot plant. The completed gigafactory will be 5x larger.

Bonaire:

I agree, it doesn’t seem to make sense that they would have planned to start installing the electrical system when the walls aren’t even there yet. I think we’re missing pieces of this puzzle.

The building is just a box to work within. The real issue is whether they will be able to get low low prices for vast quantities of raw materials, that will be shipped efficiently to the factory, and that then will efficiently be turned into batteries.

Forget the D, the Model X, the automated driving, the Model 3 . . . This factory is the most important thing that Tesla is working on right now. It will determine whether they can push battery prices down and expand beyond the high-end niche market.

Agree. In my mind Tesla is a Battery and Computer Company that just happens to make cars. In no way will they ever have majority market share. And you know what? I hope I’m wrong.

Well said, Speculawyer. And it’s not just the price/cost of battery cells produced by the Gigafactory, either.

The entire design of the Model ≡ is dependent on the exact characteristics of battery cells produced by the Gigafactory. That’s a point Randy Carlson made in his “Tesla: Gigafactory Tipping Point” article on Seeking Alpha. (I don’t generally recommend SA articles, but this one is a huge exception.)

http://seekingalpha.com/article/2966026-tesla-gigafactory-tipping-point?auth_param=4c71l:1afcet5:fd01e06e812efa2f83594ac648c7192b&uprof=46

The size, power output, and longevity of the Model ≡’s battery pack, and therefore its acceleration, range, and other factors, is dependent on the exact properties of the battery cells produced by the Gigafactory. Musk and other Tesla spokesmen recently said there will be significant changes between the cells currently being used in the Model S, and cells produced by the GF. Changes far beyond just increasing the volume of the cell by about 30%.

It remains to be seen just how much improvement there will be in battery cells produced by the Gigafactory, and how well those improvements will hold up over time.

Tesla launches construction, leaping to a flying start.

Contractor realizes he’s going to need lots of electricians, but doesn’t know how many so they post lots of job openings. Not really his primary concern, because he’s busy with dozer operators and framers.

Contractor gets to the point in the project plan where they need to nail down exact number of electricians. Turns out they don’t need as many as was guesstimated when they first threw out a bunch of job listings in order to get lots of resume’s. They cut the listings down to a realistic number, and start going through the huge pile of resume’s.

Could be something like that.

Breaking News

LOL kdawg. Good one . Tweet tweet.

or shall we say tweet Schmeet.

I wonder if any geomancy was used in the selection of the site.

Tesla domination started.