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Charging TH battery with third party charger.

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First I'd like to say I bought an adapter from Carolina drones paid 26 USD plus 13 USD to ship it to canada. It arrived pretty darn fast I think they shipped the thing within an hour of my order.

The adapter is well built, all of the contacts are sturdy and the spring loaded pins seem quite robust.

There are a few changes that I think would improve the product. 1) there is no sheathing around the contacts so it would be quite easy to short the charger. 2) The adapter is a good rigid plastic and the wires go from no support to rigid meaning bends in the wire happen at 90 degrees. A flexible transition should have been used, I have fixed this with some hot glue for now.

3) and this is more of an industry standards problem, but I don't think unsheathed banana jacks are ever the correct terminal to use for a battery connection. My charger has this inherent problem as well. So I will be changing both over to xt60 connectors.

Overall rating 9 out of 10. And considering the price on this very low run custom adapter I would actually come close to rating it 10 out of 10. You can barely get a quality HDMI cable for this price. And those are made by the millions.




Now for my question the battery says max 1C charge rate.. so 5.4 Amps. Anyone have any good info or spec on these batteries as to what the real max safe charge rate is???

Sent from my SM-G920W8 using Tapatalk
 
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I think 1c is the safest. It charges way faster than stock charger. Someone told me that the stock battery is more like 6000 or so mah even tho it says 5400 mah.

Bill W.
 
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I bought 3 of them from Carolina Dronz. I think they are really well made a 10 out of 10. I don't have any issues at all with them
1) there is no sheathing around the contacts so it would be quite easy to short the charger.
I don't understand how you can short the charger? I don't turn anything on until all my connections are made. Are you connecting your batteries with the charger on???
 
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I bought 3 of them from Carolina Dronz. I think they are really well made a 10 out of 10. I don't have any issues at all with them
1) there is no sheathing around the contacts so it would be quite easy to short the charger.
I don't understand how you can short the charger? I don't turn anything on until all my connections are made. Are you connecting your batteries with the charger on???
I haven't actually shorted them, but there is quite the possibility, and if I am charging multiple batteries, of course I leave the charger on (though not running) when I switch batteries.

It is not like I have rated it badly, but improvements could be made. While you haven't had any issues yet, the things I listed could cause issues. And they are pretty easy to fix in the next iteration, should there be enough demand... I've designed my fair share of products, perfection, even within reason considering budgetary constraints, is very hard to achieve.

I'd still highly recommend the adapter.
 

PatR

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What you have is pretty much the industry standard, banana jacks and all, and has been for over a decade. There's no possibility of shorting anything if adapters are removed from the charger when not in use. Turning off the charger works pretty well too. OTOH, the pins on the charge adapters would have to make contact with a fairly large surface to generate a short. Yes, the design could be better but we get what we get when we don't make it ourselves. Ideally the coupling end would have an extension cup at the end that would place the pin connectors inside and protected from shorts, like was done with Chroma charge adapters. But those were made by Yuneec and sold for only $10.00, not an independent operation.

As for charge rate, unless you have more information from the battery manufacturer, and none of us do, the safe charge rate is 1C or less. If you have a charger powered by an adjustable voltage power supply, match up the voltage up power supply voltage to the battery voltage. The power supply will last a lot longer that way.
 
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What you have is pretty much the industry standard, banana jacks and all, and has been for over a decade.
Absolutely, (this was not so much a critique of the adapter, but the standard)

There's no possibility of shorting anything if adapters are removed from the charger when not in use. Turning off the charger works pretty well too. OTOH, the pins on the charge adapters would have to make contact with a fairly large surface to generate a short. Yes, the design could be better but we get what we get when we don't make it ourselves. Ideally the coupling end would have an extension cup at the end that would place the pin connectors inside and protected from shorts, like was done with Chroma charge adapters. But those were made by Yuneec and sold for only $10.00, not an independent operation.
It is the 1 in 1000 oops where this issue will crop up, but sell 1000 of them and I can almost guarantee someone will short their charger.

The chargers are current driven and are pretty smart so they should shutdown if detecting a short, so it likely won't even cause damage. Actually most chargers won't even turn on if they don't detect a proper battery and the cell configuration they expect so really for most this is only an issue for a plug not full inserted in to the battery... So i guess pretty unlikely.

Well at minimum a sheath would protect pins from physical damage.

None the less you found a good product and I'm quite happy to be charging in an hour instead of 90min.


As for charge rate, unless you have more information from the battery manufacturer, and none of us do, the safe charge rate is 1C or less.
Thanks, I will stick to 1C until I hear otherwise.

My lawn mower lipo battery is I think 15s 224wh and charges at 2C. Why can't all batteries be like that. :)
 
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The 'Doh' moment I've had isn't shorting the charger, it's shorting the battery by plugging the charge adapter into the battery first and have the exposed banana plugs come together and short. Mind you they don't short long. After the flash, pop, puff of smoke, jump, and change of pants they come apart pretty quick ; )

Kind of why they came up with shielded banana plugs as an attempt to correct poor design (i.e., plugging in test leads into an AC wall outlet with exposed banana plugs.), unfortunately my charger only accepts un-shielded banana plugs. In theory, they should be impossible to short through normal use.

Greg
 
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The 'Doh' moment I've had isn't shorting the charger, it's shorting the battery by plugging the charge adapter into the battery first and have the exposed banana plugs come together and short. Mind you they don't short long. After the flash, pop, puff of smoke, jump, and change of pants they come apart pretty quick ; )

Kind of why they came up with shielded banana plugs as an attempt to correct poor design (i.e., plugging in test leads into an AC wall outlet with exposed banana plugs.), unfortunately my charger only accepts un-shielded banana plugs. In theory, they should be impossible to short through normal use.

Greg
Thats my concern. I also bought one on ebay that has plastic sleeves that automatically retract as you push the banana plugs into the charger.

Bill W.
 
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I learned that lesson about the banana plugs along time ago during my R/C car racing days. Ever since that time I always do the banana plugs first even before plugging in the charger. It only takes once, hopefully :)

A few things about charging my batteries I noticed. I typically land at 4.3 volts. On the OEM charger it takes about 1.5 hours to fully charge a battery. I bought the Hitec X2 and an adapter. I set the X2 to charge at a 1C rate which based on what Yuneec says would be 5.4 amps. I noticed that the OEM charger finished first by about 10 minutes. I had heard the H batteries were actually like 6400mah batteries, so I bumped the charge rate on my X2 to 6.4 amps. And started both chargers at the same time. This time I had put both batteries on my X2 to check each cell levels starting voltage to ensure they were as close as possible. I can't recall the number now but they extremely close if not the same.

Anyways, I started the OEM and X2 at the same time. The OEM charger finished first by about 5 minutes a head of the X2. So still about 1.5 hours. In any event, I've slowly increased the charge rate on the X2, the whole time monitoring the battery. I found at about 7.4 amps they finished about the same time. I bumped the charge to 8.0 amps and the X2 finished ahead of the OEM charger by just a couple minutes...

This whole time the battery being charged at the 8.0 rate never even got slightly warm or showed any signs of stress. I've now started charging one battery on my X2 at the 8.0 rate with no issues. I have this battery clearly marked as my 8.0 battery and will monitor its vital stats over time and compare it to the one I will only use on the OEM charger.

CAVEAT: I am NOT advising or telling anyone to charge at a rate higher than recommended. I'm simply relaying my experience and a test I'm conducting.
 
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I learned that lesson about the banana plugs along time ago during my R/C car racing days. Ever since that time I always do the banana plugs first even before plugging in the charger. It only takes once, hopefully :)

A few things about charging my batteries I noticed. I typically land at 4.3 volts. On the OEM charger it takes about 1.5 hours to fully charge a battery. I bought the Hitec X2 and an adapter. I set the X2 to charge at a 1C rate which based on what Yuneec says would be 5.4 amps. I noticed that the OEM charger finished first by about 10 minutes. I had heard the H batteries were actually like 6400mah batteries, so I bumped the charge rate on my X2 to 6.4 amps. And started both chargers at the same time. This time I had put both batteries on my X2 to check each cell levels starting voltage to ensure they were as close as possible. I can't recall the number now but they extremely close if not the same.

Anyways, I started the OEM and X2 at the same time. The OEM charger finished first by about 5 minutes a head of the X2. So still about 1.5 hours. In any event, I've slowly increased the charge rate on the X2, the whole time monitoring the battery. I found at about 7.4 amps they finished about the same time. I bumped the charge to 8.0 amps and the X2 finished ahead of the OEM charger by just a couple minutes...

This whole time the battery being charged at the 8.0 rate never even got slightly warm or showed any signs of stress. I've now started charging one battery on my X2 at the 8.0 rate with no issues. I have this battery clearly marked as my 8.0 battery and will monitor its vital stats over time and compare it to the one I will only use on the OEM charger.

CAVEAT: I am NOT advising or telling anyone to charge at a rate higher than recommended. I'm simply relaying my experience and a test I'm conducting.
Cool, if you could, report back what you find out, I'm curious to know what the actual capacity of the H battery is. If it's 5400mAh for the H to fly 25 minutes the draw of the H should only average 13C which to me is too low. I've heard the batteries are mislabeled like they were on the Q500 and are actually 6300mAh, this would make the H average draw 15C but in my opinion, it's still too low, especially when you add the weight and draw of the gimbal, and RealSense etc. but maybe it is. From (Lipo empty) or when the battery is at an actual 80%, 1.0C should take exactly 1:00hr, 0.8C (the industry recommended charge rate) it should take 1:20hrs and at 0.5C, 2:00hrs no matter what the battery capacity is in mAh.

Greg
 

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We may be forgetting about cell balancing in time to charge using after market chargers. It is my opinion the stock charger doesn't balance, or if it does it does not do it well. A good after market charger should cut off the primary charge rate as the highest voltage cell achieves correct voltage and initiate balancing mode, with is a slow process. I have 7 batteries and check individual cell voltages and several of them often end up with cell voltages of 4.18v, 4.19v, 4.21v, and 4.19v. To me that suggests a couple of things. The cells are not matched very well during manufacturing and cell balancing will take more time since the charger will enter the balance cycle well before 3 of the 4 cells achieve a correct charge state.

Regarding batteries; When we obtain new batteries we should immediately check the state of charge. I have had several arrive it a 16.6v charge state, meaning they have been stored and shipped fully charged. Depending on when the charge was performed our batteries may have been sitting fully charged on a shelf for some time before they are shipped, which is not good and will eventually cause battery failures. This may be part of an explanation why some new batteries and the H they are in fall from the sky.

QuadBart, I use the same charger you do with the Hitec 30A Power Box power supply. What voltage level do you set the power supply at? I use 14.8v-15v and charge at between 4.8A-5A, which requires an hour or a little less to charge the batteries from a 15.2v state.
 
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I'm not real familiar with how "balancing chargers" work, but you make a point I'd not considered. I have taken a partially charged battery from the OEM charger and put it on my Hitec and the cells were all the same. Now this has only been a couple of times. So I can't say for sure. But I'm going to start a log and keep track of them all. Now I don't now how well or what the tolerances are of these chargers, so it could be off...

My Hitec X2 has an outlet plug which I use. My Hyperion charger I use a 12v 10 amp power supply. I'm thinking I'm going to try that with my H battery and do some comparisons...



We may be forgetting about cell balancing in time to charge using after market chargers. It is my opinion the stock charger doesn't balance, or if it does it does not do it well. A good after market charger should cut off the primary charge rate as the highest voltage cell achieves correct voltage and initiate balancing mode, with is a slow process. I have 7 batteries and check individual cell voltages and several of them often end up with cell voltages of 4.18v, 4.19v, 4.21v, and 4.19v. To me that suggests a couple of things. The cells are not matched very well during manufacturing and cell balancing will take more time since the charger will enter the balance cycle well before 3 of the 4 cells achieve a correct charge state.

Regarding batteries; When we obtain new batteries we should immediately check the state of charge. I have had several arrive it a 16.6v charge state, meaning they have been stored and shipped fully charged. Depending on when the charge was performed our batteries may have been sitting fully charged on a shelf for some time before they are shipped, which is not good and will eventually cause battery failures. This may be part of an explanation why some new batteries and the H they are in fall from the sky.

QuadBart, I use the same charger you do with the Hitec 30A Power Box power supply. What voltage level do you set the power supply at? I use 14.8v-15v and charge at between 4.8A-5A, which requires an hour or a little less to charge the batteries from a 15.2v state.
 

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