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Old Oct 16, 2001, 09:16 PM
Registered User
USA, FL, Leesburg
Joined Aug 2000
207 Posts
batteries

I need a new battery pack. My first one which I got from a hobby mail order supplier gave out on me. I can assemble my own by now. Should I go to Radio Shack (more convenient and no S & H) and buy them? Or would I get better batteries by mail order from a hobby supplier ?

My application calls for 6 AA size nicads or (nickel metal hydride). The plane is a Teddy. A foam park flyer, 400 speed, with a 7.2 volt motor. I am more interested in duration instead of speed.
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Old Oct 16, 2001, 10:30 PM
Registered User
North GA, USA
Joined Jul 2001
501 Posts
You will probably be best served by Sanyo cells, not Radio Shack ones. Sanyo's NiCads are touted as one of the best available. I think they have NiMHs now, but don't quote me on that.

Since you prefer duration, get NiMH and increase the cell count by one (i.e., if you have a 6-cell NiCad pack, use a 7-cell NiMH). NiMH cells offer about twice the capacity for a given weight, so a 1200mAh NiMH cell weighs about the same as a 600mAh NiCad cell.

BUT, be sure your charger can charge NiMH cells! If it can't, you'll have to use NiCad cells or buy a new NiMH-capable charger.

Radio Shack's 9.6V 1600mAh NiMH car pack is very popular among the Wingo/Soarstar flyers, but is said to be inferior to the Sanyo packs. And the packs are just the results of the cells and connections...so, draw your own conclusions.

And ask around.

Wings
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Old Oct 17, 2001, 06:42 AM
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f2racer's Avatar
MA
Joined Sep 2001
248 Posts
Don't know what kind of batteries the Teddy uses, but there is definitely a difference between flying with the 9.6v 600mAh NiCD that came with my Soarstar and the Radio Shack 9.6v 1600mAh NiMH pack that I bought. The Radio Shack definitely makes probably 10-15% less power (it did pick up more power with the number of charges though, the first flight with the RS battery was painful it was down at least 25% the power of the NiCD and took almost 2 times the length to ROG), and weighs more. I've got 2 battery placements marked on my plane since on a flyer as light as my Soarstar, having the CG frontheavy means that you have to fly with constant up elevator. The best thing about the NiMH is that it will last at a minimal 2 times as long as the NiCD and if you use throttle managment and actually try to find thermals (or at least use wind rather than throttle to gain altitude) you can get as much as 4 times the flight length. I've purchased a stopwatch to time my flights. Longest NiCD to date has been 10 minutes (just loping around), my average is about 6-7 minutes. Longest on the NiMH is 35 minutes, my average is about 14-16 minutes.
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Old Oct 17, 2001, 10:42 AM
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LuckyArmpit's Avatar
West Middlesex, PA, US
Joined Jun 2001
4,853 Posts
I use the Radio Shack 1600's and 1420's. These are 8 cell
nimh's and weigh around 7.6 oz. It takes roughly 4 to 7 charges to get the battery up to its normal operating time and "juice"!
But, I get a tad more than double the duration as compared to
a 7 cell 600 mah nicad. I use them in my scooter pro, T-52 and
my homebuilt bubba flyer. Nicads have a little more pop but
you'll get less than half the duration. I charge my nimh's on a
$29 radio shack charger. Works good.

Dave...
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Old Oct 19, 2001, 09:36 PM
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Andy W's Avatar
Marietta, GA
Joined Jun 1999
43,312 Posts
As much as I agree that the Sanyo cells will serve you better, the cells in the RadioShack 1600NiMH packs (23-331B) are good enough for speed 400 use - I use them (rebuilt as per my web site, here) in my Twister and enjoy the duration even if power is down compared to my NiCD packs..
..a
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Old Oct 22, 2001, 08:12 AM
small electrics r BIG FUN
Iowa
Joined Aug 2000
4,317 Posts
Ray O Vac 1600 Nimh AA cells

In my 400/480 aircraft, I have found the rayovacs from wally world to be superior in performance to my Radio shack cells. At 10 dollars and change for 4 cells, they are also a bit cheaper. They usually take a 1700ma charge and have tolerated charging at up to 3 amps. Don't try this with your RS packs.
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Old Oct 22, 2001, 01:32 PM
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Aptos, CA, USA
Joined Apr 2001
276 Posts
I have an 8 cell Sanyo NiCad pack that came with my Wingo package, and have since bought 2 Radio Shack 1600 mah NiMH packs. The Wingo definitely takes off more quickly and climbs faster on the NiCads but has much less duration (6 to 7 minutes v.s. 15 to 20 minutes). I have flown it with both types of packs on direct drive with a 6v motor, geared with a 7.2v motor, and geared with a 6v motor. The only condition in which I found that the performance made a significant difference was on ROG from a grass field. With the RS packs it would not take off until I went to the 6v geared configuration, while it had no trouble taking off from the field with the 7.2v geared motor using the NiCads. I never tried ROG from the grass field with the direct drive.

Overall, I enjoy flying with the RS packs a lot more since I can do all the same things and get the longer duration. The extra power from the NiCads doesn't make much difference in normal flight for this class of airplane and my beginner pilot skill level.

I use a $55 FMA Versapulse peak charger for both types of packs and it works very well in the field (with an inverter) and at home.

Allen
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Old Oct 22, 2001, 01:41 PM
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MA
Joined Sep 2001
248 Posts
I've found that the decrease in performance and added weight make the Soarstar a handful to fly in windy conditions using the NiMH. It's much easier with the NiCD.
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