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Thread: Battery

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Lightbulb Battery

    Ok, Its been way too cold, windy and overcast to do much flying. Winter is here and my battery is self discharging and you know how hard our airplanes are to start.
    I bought one of these on sale for $9.95-
    http://www.harborfreight.com/automat...ger-42292.html
    I cut off the clips and added a cigar lighter plug from Radio Shack. Less than $15 total cost.
    Plugged into the cigar lighter outlet that came on my Carbon Cub it keeps the battery up if I don't fly.
    A warm engine, a hot battery and a sunny day are all you can ask in the winter!
    Bill

  2. #2
    Senior Member carlconti's Avatar
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    Default Re: Battery

    I have extensive experience with this type of charger on motorcycles. They tend to fry the battery in about a year. The best bet is a Battery Minder (not Battery Tender). I have used Battery Minders on motorcycles and a 24 volt version on a Piper Meridian. They automatically de-sulfate once the battery is fully charged. They keep battery fully charged and do not cause damage. This is the best on the market. 12v version costs about $40.

    Carl Conti

  3. #3
    Senior Member randylervold's Avatar
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    Default Re: Battery

    I would echo Carl's comments. I posted a review/recommendation here in another thread...
    http://www.cubcraftersforums.com/sho...recommendation
    Randy Lervold

  4. #4
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    Unhappy Re: Battery

    Not to start an argument but you both missed the point.
    Our batteries will barely start the engine under ideal conditions. The battery needs all the help we can give it.
    The device I bought/built is for short time use in the winter between flights.

    The simple fact is you do not need to desulphate (ie - remove PbSO4 from the plates) if the battery is not allowed to discharge when unused. Hard PbSO4 forms on the plates of unused discharged or partially discharged batteries, not on fully charged plates.
    The HF battery tender applies about 13.4 volts to a fully charged battery and that is about the ideal float voltage for the AGM batteries used in our airplanes and will keep the battery just about fully charged.
    By my measurements, it is also current limited to less than 30 ma.
    That level of current (C/800 rate) through a 24 AH AGM battery will not "fry" it even over several months.
    Most motorcycle battery maintainers that I have examined have a much higher charge rate and are not suitable for this purpose.

    I am a EE with 40 years of professional experience designing and using devices powered by and charging all types of batteries including all types of lead acid cells.
    I contend that my adaption of the HF "charger" is a technically correct and economical solution to keep my battery ready to start the airplane during low use periods in the winter.
    I thought other CC owners might also find it a useful low cost and simple solution.

    Bill

  5. #5
    Senior Member randylervold's Avatar
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    Default Re: Battery

    Good info Bill, thanks!
    Randy Lervold

  6. #6
    Senior Member carlconti's Avatar
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    Default Re: Battery

    Sorry, Seastar. I was not aware of your expertise. Now that I am aware of your background, what is your take on the Lithium Iron battery Cubcrafters is experimenting on.

    carlconti



    Quote Originally Posted by seastar View Post
    Not to start an argument but you both missed the point.
    Our batteries will barely start the engine under ideal conditions. The battery needs all the help we can give it.
    The device I bought/built is for short time use in the winter between flights.

    The simple fact is you do not need to desulphate (ie - remove PbSO4 from the plates) if the battery is not allowed to discharge when unused. Hard PbSO4 forms on the plates of unused discharged or partially discharged batteries, not on fully charged plates.
    The HF battery tender applies about 13.4 volts to a fully charged battery and that is about the ideal float voltage for the AGM batteries used in our airplanes and will keep the battery just about fully charged.
    By my measurements, it is also current limited to less than 30 ma.
    That level of current (C/800 rate) through a 24 AH AGM battery will not "fry" it even over several months.
    Most motorcycle battery maintainers that I have examined have a much higher charge rate and are not suitable for this purpose.

    I am a EE with 40 years of professional experience designing and using devices powered by and charging all types of batteries including all types of lead acid cells.
    I contend that my adaption of the HF "charger" is a technically correct and economical solution to keep my battery ready to start the airplane during low use periods in the winter.
    I thought other CC owners might also find it a useful low cost and simple solution.

    Bill

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Battery

    Sorry it's been so long since you asked but I have been boating and not flying.

    The subject of lithium batteries has been well covered in this forum.

    To sum it up IMHO ---
    Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries are much lighter than Lead Acid.
    They are stable without danger of run away or explosion.
    They CAN have higher cranking power.
    They are CLAIMED to have a longer service life -ie, more starts.
    So far, they cost more.
    Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePo4) batteries do not have the long history of reliability of Lead Acid batteries.

    For me, since a battery failure can mean an engine failure, I intend to stick with a lead acid battery for now.
    I've been using the PTX14-BS with satisfactory results for the last year.

    The only two LiFePo4 batteries I know of are for motorcycles and are built by Ballistic and Shorai.
    If you Google those names you will find lots of information and sales pitches.

    Here is one not very scientific comparison.
    http://www.webbikeworld.com/motorcyc...le-battery.htm

    I understand CubCrafters has been testing a LiFePo4 battery. Maybe they will update us?
    Bill
    Last edited by seastar; 02-19-2012 at 07:46 AM.

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