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Power source for field charging

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Old 10-22-2012, 07:16 PM
  #1
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Default Power source for field charging

I would like to make a battery charging kit for the field for my LiPo's, and given that we do not have AC outlets at my field I need a 12V power source for my charger. My batteries are generally small (< 2200mah, 3S) and I probably wouldn't charge more than 3-4 batteries in each trip so I don't need a huge power source. That said, if there are options that are not too bulky or heavy and have bigger capacity than I need, then I would consider it.

With that, here are my questions:
- What battery sources do you all use for your kits? Are there other reasonably economical options than lead-acid batteries?
- If you have a charging box, do show the pictures!
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Old 10-22-2012, 07:24 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Did you drive to the airfield?  I use my car's battery and the cigarette lighter - er - 12v accessory terminal outet.
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Old 10-22-2012, 07:39 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Sorry I forgot to mention, I'd rather not use the car battery for a number of reasons, one of which being I'd like to take my Lipo's and the charging station as far away from the car as I can... I am sure others may have different opinions on this, but right, wrong or indifferent, I'd like to keep this discussion on external battery options.

Obviously lead-acid is one option, but what about lighter packs such as the one below (two of them should be plenty)? Not sure how reliable these are, but just an idea?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Good-quality...item1e6df8278f
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Old 10-22-2012, 08:53 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Your charger may kick out for low input voltage after a couple of 2300 lipos are charged.
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Old 10-23-2012, 03:19 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Many guys at our club use Lawn Tractor batteries, plenty of power for multiple charges, but not as large as a car or RV battery..

I made a 25' lead that connects to my truck's 7-pin trailer wiring plug, I can charge at my tailgate or a short distance away at the plane
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Old 10-23-2012, 03:27 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

I use a lawn tractor battery. My wife found a small cooler with a flip open top and swing away handle that the battery fits in to so it is easy to transport.
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Old 10-23-2012, 03:56 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging




I use a lawn tractor battery also, however Wrongwayrc.com
sell lithium ion pack thats for field charging. this pack will
fit in your back pocket. The cell he uses, I believe are the
same size as the ones used in the Chevy Volt. Check out
their web site. I met him at our fun fly.


Bob
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Old 10-23-2012, 04:21 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Thanks everyone.

Bob, thanks for posting the link, this is quite interesting and is exactly what I am looking for. The website doesn't state the weight, but it seems much lighter than a lawn tractor battery.
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Old 10-23-2012, 05:47 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

That will maybe charge your 2200 3s once,, I think the idea of that pack it t be able to charge 4-5 cell Nixx packs, not 3s lithiums,, The math doesn't work
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Old 10-23-2012, 06:40 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

I know you say you don't want a car battery, but I use the cheapest smallest 12V car battery that Walmart sells. I recall it to be about $26. Cheap and simple.
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:44 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Some guys at the other fields around here use small honda generators.
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Old 10-23-2012, 08:11 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Another possibility is a portable jump start unit for automobiles. Nicely packaged with handle, 19 AHr or more internal battery, cigarette lighter connectors, and many configurations. Best of all, it can serve in other ways too.
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:44 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging


Quote:
ORIGINAL: scale only 4 me

Many guys at our club use Lawn Tractor batteries, plenty of power for multiple charges, but not as large as a car or RV battery..

I made a 25' lead that connects to my truck's 7-pin trailer wiring plug, I can charge at my tailgate or a short distance away at the plane
What a great idea!!!
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:49 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging


Quote:
ORIGINAL: airbusdrvr

I know you say you don't want a car battery, but I use the cheapest smallest 12V car battery that Walmart sells. I recall it to be about $26. Cheap and simple.
I meant I didn't want to use my car's battery (although I have to admit, the connection to the trailer plug seems like a great idea!), I am certainly open to getting a lead-acid battery as a separate power source. It's hard to beat the price and I may very well go that way, but the 47Ah Li-ion battery in a light and compact package which OldScaleGuy recommended is also quite tempting...
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Old 10-23-2012, 09:56 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging


Quote:
ORIGINAL: ppkk


Quote:
ORIGINAL: airbusdrvr

I know you say you don't want a car battery, but I use the cheapest smallest 12V car battery that Walmart sells. I recall it to be about $26. Cheap and simple.
I meant I didn't want to use my car's battery (although I have to admit, the connection to the trailer plug seems like a great idea!), I am certainly open to getting a lead-acid battery as a separate power source. It's hard to beat the price and I may very well go that way, but the 47Ah Li-ion battery in a light and compact package which OldScaleGuy recommended is also quite tempting...
Post a link please, that's not the battery I thought you were looking at
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Old 10-23-2012, 10:13 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Weasel Keeper

Another possibility is a portable jump start unit for automobiles. Nicely packaged with handle, 19 AHr or more internal battery, cigarette lighter connectors, and many configurations. Best of all, it can serve in other ways too.
I use the auto jump start to operate my electric fuel pump and charge my Lipos. I get 3 charges on my 2200 mah packs before it won't operate the field charger anymore. A bigger cheap auto battery is better, something with more amps if all you are flying is electric. Most the guys at the field use auto batteries. The deep cycle gel cell battery is best but costs a bunch.
I have even used my auto jump start to start up guys cars at the field and take it with me on trips.
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Old 10-23-2012, 10:19 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Gray Beard


Quote:
ORIGINAL: Weasel Keeper

Another possibility is a portable jump start unit for automobiles. Nicely packaged with handle, 19 AHr or more internal battery, cigarette lighter connectors, and many configurations. Best of all, it can serve in other ways too.
I use the auto jump start to operate my electric fuel pump and charge my Lipos. I get 3 charges on my 2200 mah packs before it won't operate the field charger anymore. A bigger cheap auto battery is better, something with more amps if all you are flying is electric. Most the guys at the field use auto batteries. The deep cycle gel cell battery is best but costs a bunch.
I have even used my auto jump start to start up guys cars at the field and take it with me on trips.
What size jump start unit do you use? Can you please also show which unit you use?

Thanks!
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Old 10-23-2012, 10:31 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

Sure, it will be a few minutes.
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Old 10-23-2012, 10:56 AM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

A Sears unit I found on sale, Harbor Freight also has them on sale very often. As far as amps go I'm not sure if it's 750or if that's the model number, I have had it for several years. It even has the plug in on the side for the lighter adapter. A light bar to show what the charge is. Some of them have a Gage to show it. This one didn't cost me much. It has a built in charger and even goes into trickle charge so you can leave it plugged in if you like. If your thinking of one of these look for one with the highest amps. Some of them even have a small pump you cn use for retracts. My old one had the pump and when it dies I pulled out the pump and still use it.
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Old 10-23-2012, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
ORIGINAL: Gray Beard

A Sears unit I found on sale, Harbor Freight also has them on sale very often. As far as amps go I'm not sure if it's 750or if that's the model number, I have had it for several years. It even has the plug in on the side for the lighter adapter. A light bar to show what the charge is. Some of them have a Gage to show it. This one didn't cost me much. It has a built in charger and even goes into trickle charge so you can leave it plugged in if you like. If your thinking of one of these look for one with the highest amps. Some of them even have a small pump you cn use for retracts. My old one had the pump and when it dies I pulled out the pump and still use it.
Thanks. Yours looks like it has had many years of TLC!
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Old 10-23-2012, 01:21 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

I fly off of a dry lake bed. When we take our planes to an asphalt field our planes leave a dirt trail and the other local pilots know exactly where we usually fly. You should see my flight box!!
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Old 10-23-2012, 02:38 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

You can even charge those jump boxes quickly. Start your car and hook it up for about 10 mins.
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Old 10-23-2012, 05:35 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging


Quote:
ORIGINAL: scale only 4 me

Many guys at our club use Lawn Tractor batteries, plenty of power for multiple charges, but not as large as a car or RV battery..

I made a 25' lead that connects to my truck's 7-pin trailer wiring plug, I can charge at my tailgate or a short distance away at the plane
gee I like that, how you make it?

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Old 10-23-2012, 07:54 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

one of these http://www.walmart.com/ip/Hopkins-To...r-End/16782551 (mine is a different brand)
an old 25' 12 gauge extension cord (used to be 50' before the incident)
and a couple banana plug sockets sitting in a hitec servo box

pretty darn easy to wire up

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Old 10-23-2012, 10:45 PM
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Default RE: Power source for field charging

I have installed a solar charging station with a 20 amp charge controller and two 100 watt panels. The panels will output 12 volts and 11.96 amps with full sun. We have two 12 volt 150 amp hour gel cell battery's in parallel keeping the system at 12 volts. I have pulled over 30 amps for 3 to 4 hours straight and have never killed the storage battery's. This system is left on all the time. One of the club members built a charging area on the out side wall of the club house with banana plugs and a 12 volt 30 amp circuit breaker. Five separate chargers can be used at the same time.

A club member donated our battery's for free. You will need to buy battery's and connectors. I would go to your club meeting and see if this will be something the other members will want to have at your club. I did the research we formed a committee and printed some copies of the parts needed and they said yes. I was given the money to buy the stuff we needed. A month later we had it up and running. I had a club member build the aluminum mount to mount the solar panels to the roof. But I am sure you can find the help from a fellow club member if you ask. The link for the 100 watt system below is $249 you will need to buy battery's and a couple of other things but the basic 100 watt system will be a start. You can always buy a Y connector and an extra 100 watt panel to have exactly what we are using if you want more power. These systems are not junk either they have a 20 year warranty.

This is a link to the 100 watt system:http://www.solarpenny.com/100-Watt-O...100CCSOLAR.htm
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