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problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

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Old 09-20-2009, 09:17 AM
  #1
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Default problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I recently purchased a new Duratrax Onyx 230 charger. I am trying to slow charge 2650 mAh NiMH individual AA cells. I have 4 cells in a standard battery holder. I have programmed the charger as follows.

battery type: NiMH
cell count: 4
capacity (mAh): 2650
current: 0.3 A
safety time: off
Δ Peak (mV/C): 4
trickle current: off

I realize now reading the manual that I should have set the capacity to 110 to 130% of the rated capacity, but I do not think that is causing the problem. I set the safety time to off as it can only go up to 300 minutes, I am looking for a time of around 9 or 10 hours, and the manual talks about turning it off for a slow charge. I set the Δ peak at 4 as the manual recommends using between 3 and 7 for NiMH, and I figured the peak would be a bit subtle during a slow charge.

Every time I get 310 minutes into the charge, it stops, and I get a "circuit error" alarm.

Has anyone experienced this issue with this charger or have any ideas?

Thanks!
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Old 09-20-2009, 12:52 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I'm going to set mine that way to try to duplicate the problem. It's odd that it is occurring at 310 minutes with that particular error. I will stare at mine from 300 minutes< to see if anything else is happening.

eventually you'll have a charged battery. [X(]
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Old 09-20-2009, 02:15 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Thanks, guver. It happened again since I wrote the original post this morning.
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Old 09-20-2009, 03:01 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???



Mines going right now, one thing I did notice was that the timer resets to 300 every charge even when not being de-powered.

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Old 09-20-2009, 03:37 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I just cycled mine to the "start" screen and watched as it scrolled through the parameters. For safety time, it said "0min." It did not look like it had reset to 300. I doubt it is meaningful, but I used memory 0 for this setup. Thanks again for taking the time to assist guver.
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Old 09-21-2009, 09:21 AM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Both of mine do exact same thing as yours. I'd be confident that they are all the same and is a bug in program. It shouldn't do this behavior at all. It makes turning the timer "off" the same as setting it to 310 minutes.Maybe some other users can confirm.
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Old 09-21-2009, 02:38 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I hate to say that is "good" news, but at least mine is not "broken." I spoke to a tech at Hobbico today, and he said I should send it in for service. I do not think I am going to do that. I am going to call them and tell them what we learned. I will post the outcome of that conversation.

Thanks,

Bryan
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Old 09-21-2009, 02:53 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Well I just spoke to Hobbico. Unfortunately, it seems to have been mostly a waste of time. Basically, the tech said "I have not taken any calls about that issue. Until we get enough of them sent in with that issue, we will not look into it as an inherent issue with the charger. So the only option is to send it in and have it tested." I was hoping that they could investigate without having to part with my charger. Oh well.

***edit***

If anyone else has the Onyx 230, you might try duplicating this issue with yours and contacting Hobbico if you have the same issue. If in fact this is an inherent issue, getting enough people to report it will help get it resolved.

Thanks!
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Old 09-21-2009, 03:04 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

May have found another person with the same issue.

[link=http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/fb.asp?m=8419055]http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/fb.asp?m=8419055[/link]
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Old 09-21-2009, 03:07 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Here's another (older) report of the same issue on another forum.

[link=http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=909634]http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=909634[/link]
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Old 09-21-2009, 03:08 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I'm trying to remember , but think I have heard of others as well. You may try to get ahold of Bax from Hobbico , but the tech put it pretty clear. I am 90% confident, it will never be "fixed"

I may mess around with the 220 as well.
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Old 09-21-2009, 04:03 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Is that the same Bax that answers many of the questions in the Futaba support forum? If so, I will pm him.

Bryan
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Old 09-21-2009, 06:16 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

yet another person with the same problem on another forum

[link=http://monster.traxxas.com/showpost.php?p=4028337&postcount=14]http://monster.traxxas.com/showpost.php?p=4028337&postcount=14[/link]
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Old 09-21-2009, 06:35 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Yes, He may be able to help. http://www.rcuniverse.com/community/...=1&memid=30183
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Old 09-22-2009, 03:28 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I pm'ed Bax today. Thanks.
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Old 09-22-2009, 05:53 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I just read report of a pair of 220 doing the exact same error at 310 minutes.
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:10 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I am not familiar with this charger, but here's a thought. If the charger can be set for constant current charge instead of peak charge, set it for constant current.

The charger may be timing out because 5 hours is a long time to wait for a peak on a fast charge or quick charge. It will never see the peak a that low charge rate, this may be causing and auto time-out.

You might even set it for a time out after a couple of minutes on peak charge, and have it switch to a .300 A trikle if it will go that high.
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Old 09-23-2009, 06:05 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Geezer,

I have had some of the same thoughts about work-arounds for the issue. And I think I may be able to use one of your approaches. But I honestly would like the charger to work the way it is advertised to work. And while I could be wrong, I have a strong sense that this is a design or programming issue. In fact, at this point, I would put money on it. If there is absolutely no other way, I will send it in. But I really do not want to part with it, especially since I suspect it will be gone a long time and/or will come back the same as it is now. And I am frankly frustrated that Hobbico/Hobby Services have shown no interest in the possibility that this issue is a design/programming issue at all. Anyone have any suggestions??

Thanks!
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Old 09-23-2009, 08:50 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I just bought one of these last week. I have not had a reason to charge at the slow rates yet, but I wonder if you might have to turn off the peak detection when charging that low. I read the owners manual over and over again, and I can't find anywhere that is says you need to, but I wonder if it would work.

I am relatively new to electric, so I am not sure what I actually know, but I thought I read somewhere that it was difficult to detect a peak when slow charging.
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Old 09-29-2009, 04:22 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I am not sure you can turn off the peak detection.

No answer from Bax yet.
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Old 09-30-2009, 05:53 AM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

It cannot be turned off, but it can be less sensitive. It has nothing to do with the timer problem. Pure and simple "the charger will not go beyond 310 minutes"
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:22 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

I just ran into this issue and am wondering if anything new has come up on it? I'm having problems with a batt taking full capacity and pretty much reserved myself to an overnight slow charge as the only way to get it conditioned to take a full charge. I'm going to run the battery out tomorrow and then try the slow charge again, maybe this was a fluke. I've only had the charger for a couple months.
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Old 03-31-2010, 07:38 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Hey guys, i just got my 230 today and i have the same problem! Worse of all, my futaba batteries need 15 hours for a slow charge. This is frustrating! Anybody have any way to help? so sad.
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Old 04-16-2010, 04:19 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

Does anyone have solution to fix this issue? How can we run slow charge to fully charge the NiMH battery with the Onyx 230 charger? Please help.....
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Old 04-16-2010, 04:23 PM
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Default RE: problem with new Onyx charger - design issue???

to the best of my knowledge, you cant. Just run a fast charge (or 0.75C) (=
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