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LIFE battery charging in the plane question

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Old 12-13-2012, 07:16 PM
  #1
raron455
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Default LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Hello, afterall theadvice Igot onmy postfor battery help,I was convinced that my ni-mh days are over and it was time to run the life (A123) batteries,,SO I went out and bought a hobbico life 6.6 2100 mah battery. I
Iike the shape of it and mounting it is really easy. Ihave a hitec x1 charger that can balance charge this life battery, as the one thing I am certain is the battery needs to be balance charged every time, so My charger is more than capable of this, the battery has two connectors that can go into recievers,etc, one large deans connector, and the balance connector,, BUT HERE IS THE PROBLEM,once the battery is in the plane,, how the heck do you balance charge it,, I have one of the power switches with the charge port (SEEPIC) I have these switches in all my planes,, so to balance charge the life battery I will have to remove it every time?? this cant be , is there something Iam missing? Ihave searched and am still confused,, any help would be appreciated,
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:23 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

I always remove mine and charge them in a safe location.
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:33 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

That sux, considering the my cg requires that battery on the firewall under the cowl..
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:25 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Hey Raron.

I have two LiFe batteries in my 30cc gas Extra 300 that are burried. I'll I did was purchase a balance plug extension 12" and run it up to the hatch area. I do not have to remove the batteries when I charge them. I have been doing this about two years now. It works perfect every time.

Mike
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Old 12-14-2012, 05:22 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Check out the hangtime hobbies site and the electrodynamics site.  Both of these great small companies provide heavy duty switches which can solve your problem. 

The HangtimesHhobbies site also has an excellent FAQ section on A123 batteries and switch configuration.

John
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Old 12-14-2012, 05:46 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Highflyer2

Check out the hangtime hobbies site and the electrodynamics site. Both of these great small companies provide heavy duty switches which can solve your problem.

The HangtimesHhobbies site also has an excellent FAQ section on A123 batteries and switch configuration.

John
One of the best places (IMO) for all your battery and charging needs.

Rick
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Old 12-14-2012, 05:50 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

After two battery fires in different club members planes. (Who are 20yr + AMA members) No thanks! I will charge my batteries OUT of my planes. They say "its NOT safe" for a reason
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:34 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Hangtime Hobbies also has a charging connector wire setup that does not require you to change your current switch. All you have to do is cut the white (signal) wire between the RX and the switch. Their connector uses the white wire between the battery and switch as the mid voltage point for balancing purposes. I have that setup on six planes.

Brian
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:55 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

raron455,

Get yourself a balance extension and mount it in the fuse near your switch. I use a spare plastic switch plate or something similar to epoxy the balance connector into and then mount the plate into the fuse. If you do this make sure you get the correct connector end mounted. Since I started using Life batts I never take my batts out of my planes.

Here is a an example of one I have mounted in a Sig Hog Bipe that I never take apart. You can see it right below the switch. I keep a little rubber thread protector on it to keep it clean.

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Old 12-14-2012, 07:20 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

No problem charging A123's in the plane.
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Old 12-14-2012, 07:47 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question


Quote:
ORIGINAL: allelectric

After two battery fires in different club members planes. (Who are 20yr + AMA members) No thanks! I will charge my batteries OUT of my planes. They say ''its NOT safe'' for a reason
If charged properly, I seriously doubt those fires were caused by a LiFe battery and especially not a A 123 battery! Some facts are missing in this story.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:50 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Truckracer


Quote:
ORIGINAL: allelectric

After two battery fires in different club members planes. (Who are 20yr + AMA members) No thanks! I will charge my batteries OUT of my planes. They say ''its NOT safe'' for a reason
If charged properly, I seriously doubt those fires were caused by a LiFe battery and especially not a A 123 battery! Some facts are missing in this story.
Truckracer is right,, the life batts are not anywhere near as volatile as the lipo batteries which are the the culprit for fires,, I personally had a 14.8 volt lipo pack catch fire and Iwill assure you it was quite scary, Iwas using it to power myglow engine starter, I removed it the minute I seen it swell and then a little smoke, it started smoking more,, Ithrew it on the concrete at the field, where it commenced to burning up, there are still marks on the concrete where it burned,, I would not put a lipo in my planes,, my .02
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:51 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

thanks for the info fellas, The hangtime site got me all sorted out, Placed my order, I will just have to use the hobbico pack somewhere in another plane, bought some of the packs he sells that make life with a123 easier.
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Old 12-14-2012, 10:39 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

LiFe and Lipo are different. IMO u can charge a LiFe in the plane but not a Lipo
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:55 AM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Why would I go to LIFE and stop using ni-mh? The LIFE is heavier and has to be balance. What is the advantage?
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:10 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Much longer flight times between charging and a  longer life cycle of the pack with life or lipo.
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:11 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

The A123 is definitely NOT heavier for the same capacity. If you are happy with NiXX, continue to use it. Most NiXX cells available are ancient stock and mostly dead when you buy them with a few exceptions.
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:31 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

The last 2000ma 6v ni-mh 5 cell weighed less than the 2200ma LIFE. I am not having trouble getting ni-mh. As for as flight time ,I fly all day. I am not trying to be a pain. But what is the real advantage?
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:38 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

OK how about this way? A larger number of flights between charges.
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:45 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question


Quote:
ORIGINAL: WRM

Why would I go to LIFE and stop using ni-mh? The LIFE is heavier and has to be balance. What is the advantage?
Life 6.6v 1800 ma weighs 4.6oz.
Nimh 6v 1600 ma weighs 4.4oz..

I would not consider .2oz heavier. Negligible at best.
Nimhs will soon, if not already, be a thing of the past as far as receiver batteries go.
They don't last very long. I had one that after two years of use the self discharge rate increased drastically. I grounded the plane and replaced the battery. Shortly thereafter continued testing of that battery showed I would have lost the plane if I continued to use it.
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Old 12-14-2012, 12:52 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

I charge at 8:00 am and fly till about 6:00 pm . As for the weight goes the LIFE 2100ma is 5.0 oz (143 g) and the 5 cell 2000 ma ni-mh is 4.1 oz (117g) not a lot .
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:03 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

I dont know who told you that ni-mh are going away, but they are wrong . Sounds like a hobble shop that doesn't want to stock much.
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:08 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

Advantages of A123
Higher discharge capacity (lower internal resitance) especially with real A123 systems cells with Nanotech.
MUCH faster charge capacity. Snap on a balance charger like the CellPro and they are done in 10 or 15 minutes from nearly flat.
Hold charge nearly indefinately, no self discharge. Charge now fly at Christmas, or next Christmas.
Available now in 2500mah 2s packs from various retailers

Disadvantages.
You have to know how to charge/monitor them, there's a way to handle them and load testing before flight isn't it.
You have to have a A123/LiFe capable charger
After getting accustomed you will have a large pile of NiCad and NiMH that you don't know what to do with.
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:30 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

yeah lock up a 7955 or 8711 and see if your plane comes down in one piece with a nimh in it.. nope not going to happen.. the life batt will smile at the locked up servo and let you get your plane down when you notice something is a miss.. life batts will take over very soon..
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Old 12-14-2012, 02:00 PM
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Default RE: LIFE battery charging in the plane question

RCU is acting up . I fly with 8711s and have since they came out and not had a problem . You are probably right ,the hobby shops will make us change so we have to buy all new batteries and chargers . It's all about money.
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