Categories: world

Behind the scenes at Tesla Secret Level III Event, the launch of SpaceX Falcon Heavy

April 22, 2019 by Paul Fosse Although at CleanTechnica we have already published an article on the Falcon Heavy launch, I decided to also write about what I taught me at the event. Why go to the launch? There are many answers to this question, but the first answer is FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out. I didn't know what this event would mean, but since I was invited I didn't want to miss it. Similar thoughts went through my head on model Y that was revealed a month earlier. My income tax returns in a few days. My project at work can use my attention. A few members of my family are still recovering from surgery. But it would be an excuse to spend some time with my son (who comfortably lives in Orlando). I have lived in Florida for almost 30 years and have never gone to a launch. Would Elon Musk be at the event and would I meet him personally? With all these thoughts in my mind, the decisive factor was that the event was a Secret Level 3 Tesla event and with few exceptions, only people who had 35 or more references would be there. This would be a much smaller event than the model Y cover (which had about 700 people) and according to this site only about 120 people qualified in the world. I knew with work plans and the delays that are inherent in the space launch that many would not be…

April 22, 2019 by Paul Fosse


Although at CleanTechnica we have already published an article on the Falcon Heavy launch, I decided to also write about what I taught me at the event.

Why go to the launch?

There are many answers to this question, but the first answer is FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out. I didn’t know what this event would mean, but since I was invited I didn’t want to miss it. Similar thoughts went through my head on model Y that was revealed a month earlier. My income tax returns in a few days. My project at work can use my attention. A few members of my family are still recovering from surgery. But it would be an excuse to spend some time with my son (who comfortably lives in Orlando).

I have lived in Florida for almost 30 years and have never gone to a launch. Would Elon Musk be at the event and would I meet him personally? With all these thoughts in my mind, the decisive factor was that the event was a Secret Level 3 Tesla event and with few exceptions, only people who had 35 or more references would be there. This would be a much smaller event than the model Y cover (which had about 700 people) and according to this site only about 120 people qualified in the world. I knew with work plans and the delays that are inherent in the space launch that many would not be able to do so.

My logic was correct and it was a small event of fewer than 100 people. The small size (and the fact that the launch was delayed) meant that I had to spend more time meeting the great people who helped promote Tesla in recent years.

Bus trip to Cape Canaveral

Starman joins bus (https://twitter.com/myteslaadventur)

Resan starts …

Although it would have been more convenient for me to just drive to Cape Canaveral than to meet the group of Tesla enthusiasts in Orlando and go to the event on the bus I decided to take the bus for two reasons. First I wanted more time to spend time with the group. Second, I was concerned about the traffic and did not want to miss the launch because I got stuck in the traffic or made a wrong turn or had trouble finding the event.

It ended up being a wise decision. The first person I met was a wise trauma surgeon who has been involved in Tesla far longer than I have been and was willing to share how these events usually go down. He had taken a picture and a sharpie, only if we got the chance to meet Elon (unfortunately it did not happen). He shared stories of other Tesla events that he had participated in and I realized that these events were quite special about important people whom he made time for them.

We come to the Exploration Tower

This picture was taken after the launch when SpaceX Engineer Trip Harriss celebrated the successful launch with a glass of wine.

My wife liked to be invited to the event

We arrived at the event and found that they had rented a 7-tower tower just for our group and provided a SpaceX Launch Engineer to give us a presentation on the upcoming launch and answer any questions we had. I was confused as to why SpaceX developed two rockets of similar force – Falcon Heavy and Starship (formerly called Big Falcon Rocket or BFR) – so I asked about it and he said the difference was that Falcon Heavy was built using tried and tested parts, while Starship is the next generation that uses new technology that will hopefully be good but not ready for production use yet.

Since the launch was delayed from 6:30 to 8:30 (before it was delayed 22 hours until the next day), we had plenty of time to enjoy food and drink at the event.

Influencers

Some of the details of the event – what did I learn about the people who have marketed Tesla (most for years).

They fell into four main groups (as usual, I do not fit into any of them).

  1. The YouTubers has done a lot to market Tesla and get the message out there that Tesla does good cars. Andy Slye, LikeTesla and Ben Sullins were some of the biggest YouTubers at the event. Not surprisingly, they all made videos at the event – that’s what they do. They did a great job capturing the event, so check out their video clips. I liked to meet them and learn some of their tricks. Focus on your unique perspective and don’t try to make the professionals the best tip I got from Ben. Besides Ben, it was obvious to talk to Kim and Andy why they have successful channels; They have a genuine interest in Tesla, have great charisma and have learned the technical skills to make a quality product.
  2. The veterans are members of the community that the surgeon I mentioned earlier who has been with the Tesla community since the beginning. They bought the original Roadster and most of them bought S and / or X and maybe even 3 each of them came out. They don’t have 100,000 followers like YouTubers, but they’ve been talking about Tesla to their friends and colleagues for 10 years. They were Tesla fans before it was cool. They have followed the company through some tough times and stuck with Tesla through thick and thin.
  3. The tenants (who usually use the Turo platform) have done a lot to help people experience the excitement of EV, and especially Teslas, and most recently model 3. A car that differs from anything out there, is Model 3 hard to accept with a short two-mile test drive, so the fact that many people decided to put their cars on Turo to let others try them has done a lot to encourage people a little more cautiously to buy a Tesla. The best tip I got from this group is: “You don’t want to be the cheapest Tesla in your market.” This is because the shopper who is only focused on the price may not be the type of tenant you want to drive your car. I have used the Turo platform earlier and had some problems with last minute cancellations. Turo has now introduced a cancellation fee that abuses cancellations and has largely eliminated this problem. It’s cool to hear.
  4. Tesla Owners Clubs Presidents . I have not been too involved in the Florida Tesla Enthusiast club, but I am a member and have participated in a function. I have been quite involved in organizing both parent teacher groups and certain political groups, so I understand what an innocent leading volunteer group can be. There is some overlap with the veterans mentioned above, but some of these presidents are newer to the party than the veterinarians. I didn’t spend as much time as I should have with this group, but will surely see these guys up at the next event.

Conclusion

The team at Tesla who organized this amazing event and made our dream remember

The launch was a great success for SpaceX and the two-day event was a great chance I could network with some amazingly talented people. I also want to give a shoutout to the team from Tesla who puts on the event. They hit a First Class event and had to deal with the uncertainty of a space launch and a total of 3 delays. Throughout, they never complained and stayed 100% focused on making it a life experience for every person participating.

I’m glad I had the chance to participate in this event and learn from all those people who know more about Tesla than I do. The reason I can go to the event is that our editor and my mentor, Zachary Shahan, encouraged me to share my passion for Tesla with CleanTechnica readers *. I am grateful to all readers who bought Tesla vehicles because of my work and especially those who used my referral code, so that I can be invited to events like this.

If you want to utilize my Tesla reference link to get 1000 miles free charge on a Tesla model S, model X or model 3, here is the code: https://ts.la/paul92237 (but as I have said before, if another owner helped you more, use their link instead of mine). I encourage you to buy before May 1 if you believe in Tesla’s ability to make Full Self Driving (FSD) work soon. Elon has said he raises the prices on May 1 for FSD, but if you buy now you can avoid that price increase. I just ordered model Y today because I know I want a model Y with FSD, so I can just as well order now (you can’t use a referral code for it, but that’s the car I want).

* Editor’s note: Paul was generous enough to drive his model 3 down from Tampa to give me my first unit in the transformative vehicle. From meeting him because of his long enthusiasm for EV (he bought a Nissan LEAF years ago) and because I learned about his program skills, I asked him if he wanted to write an article for us on a Tesla Autopilot update. He has obviously done a good job of getting the most out of the opportunity!


Tags: SpaceX, Star Man, Tesla

About the author

Paul Fosse A software engineer for over 30 years, first developing EDI software and then developing data storage systems. Meanwhile, I have also had the chance to help start a consulting company for software and make portfolio management. In 2010 I took an interest in electric cars because gas became expensive. In 2015, I started reading CleanTechnica and was interested in solar, mainly because it was a threat to my oil and gas investments. Follow me on Twitter @ atj721 Tesla investor. Tesla reference code: https://ts.la/paul92237

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