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Batteries & Chargers Discuss Li-P, Li-Ion, NiMh, Nicad battery technology and the chargers that juice 'em up!

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Old 01-12-2013, 04:39 AM   #1
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Hey Gang, happy new year.

I have fried a single cell in several of my lipos. Can you tell me what I might be doing to cause this, or is it just my cheap batteries?

Thanks for any thoughts.

What are you guys/gals working on? I'm working on at getting all my stuff airworthy, a old GP Decathlon, a klingberg wing. Anyone build one of those wings...
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Old 01-12-2013, 05:06 AM   #2
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I accidently left a couple of batteries on my cheapie eflight chargers a few times. Sometimes I was able to bring them back from a 0 voltage situation by hooking a small jst charger my grandpa used to use to charge his electrics from back in the day. It will not even come close to properly ballaning the cells, and will easily over charge them.

I have a cheap tester from heads up rc, and I hook it up to the balancing charge plug to monitor voltage every couple of minutes. Do not let any cell get above 4.2 v's this way. If you can get the total voltage a bit over 9v's, sometime you can try hooking back up to a battery charger ballancing charger and recover the battery. It has not always worked for me however. I have about 4 bad battery's that only register 2 cells. Some of them I got to take a charge, then quickly discharged a cell or two. I am going to save them and one day take apart all of the good cells and make them into good batteries again.
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Old 01-12-2013, 06:01 AM   #3
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Hi Kargo. I'm not an expert in the battery field, but I was just wondering, are you using a balancing charger? I imagine that could have something to do with it if not. Also, how hard are you on the batteries? Always land with at least 20% in them? Or always fly to LVC? Also, when storing a long time, do you leave them at 50%? These are things I've read helps keep your batts alive and happy for a longer time.
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Old 01-12-2013, 06:32 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by kargo View Post
Hey Gang, happy new year.

I have fried a single cell in several of my lipos. Can you tell me what I might be doing to cause this, or is it just my cheap batteries?

Thanks for any thoughts.

What are you guys/gals working on? I'm working on at getting all my stuff airworthy, a old GP Decathlon, a klingberg wing. Anyone build one of those wings...
I have never fried a single cell in any of my lipos yet But i think the problem might be that your using a liop that does not have enough amps to do the job, most people make this mistake, Because they dont have a Wattmeter to check Draws with, This is where a Wattmeter comes in handy, if your motor, prop assy is set up to draw 20 amps, but your lipo can only deliver 15 amps, your overloading the lipo, and that will fry a lipo real quick, and cause your esc to go into LVC, test your amp draw with a wattmeter and use a lipo that delivers 20 to 25% more amps than what your power system draws, that will protect your lipo and power system, Hope that helps, Chellie

http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s..._Analyzer.html


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Old 01-15-2013, 08:13 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies Gang

I'll probably try using batteries with a higher C rating. I also may be draining them too much, per flight. Dunno. I know one died because I left the balancing plug on one of my esc's (hobbyking) plugged into the batt after use. Checked it after storing it for a while and one cell was at 0. live and learn i guess.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:35 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by kargo View Post
Thanks for the replies Gang

I'll probably try using batteries with a higher C rating. I also may be draining them too much, per flight. Dunno. I know one died because I left the balancing plug on one of my esc's (hobbyking) plugged into the batt after use. Checked it after storing it for a while and one cell was at 0. live and learn i guess.
A lot of the cheap chargers are designed to just ballance the cells to the lowest cell. I have left a battery on the charger when it had the charge light lit up over night once, and it had been discharged down to 3.6v's per cell.

Seems like it would be easy enough to throw a diode inline, but whatever I guess.

I use batteries with about double my actual amp draw continous and about 4 times burst. My slow tick I had 5 1800mah batteries at 30c. I believe they were 54 amps continuous and 108 peak for a 23 amp actual motor draw. I also like to about double up my esc. I run a 40 amp unit on my slow stick as well.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:16 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by hayofstacks View Post
A lot of the cheap chargers are designed to just balance the cells to the lowest cell. I have left a battery on the charger when it had the charge light lit up over night once, and it had been discharged down to 3.6v's per cell.

Seems like it would be easy enough to throw a diode inline, but whatever I guess.

Didn't know they were still doing that. Methinks if your charger is discharging to the lowest cell, and NOT balancing while charging, that charger should be a candidate for the scrap bin. A while back I was using the Astroflight "Blinky" on my A123 cells. That balancer wound up damaging several cells on my 6S2P A123 pack.

I've been using the Cellpro Powerlab 8 charger. This charger balances WHILE charging. It will not allow any cell to go over the preset maximum voltage on each cell. (I've watched the PL8 charger do its thing while monitoring the cell voltages on my separate six channel DC voltmeter.)

I think the Cellpro line of chargers all work this way. Sure reduces the possibility of a fire.

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Old 01-16-2013, 05:48 AM   #8
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My cigarette lighter eflight chargers did this. Strangely the ones with aligator clips don't. I think I have worn them out though, because they will only charge up to 12.4v's now, but strangely the 800mah eflight charger that came with my dads helicopter doesn't. I don't get it. But I abuse the crap out of my batteries and chargers. I always fly till lvc, I sometimes go weeks without charging the batteries, and when I do run out of batteries, I am usually charging 6- sometimes even 8 battery's all at the same time.

And I run it all off of ONE computer power supply of unknown wattage. If I crank all my eflight chargers up to 3 amps, and the hobbyking cheepie up to 5 amps, the will give me an input voltage error, but the volt meter still reads 12v's. So I don't know if its the chargers or the power supply.

I generally charge overnight anyhow at .5 amps anyways though.
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