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Old Jan 08, 2010, 02:13 AM
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Seoul, Korea
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Any special considerations flying in cold weather?

I read somewhere (I don't remember where now) that the LiPo batteries don't like the cold very much, but the OP didn't explain what that was.

Is there something that needs to be done to the LiPo batteries to fly in below freezing temperatures? (Ok, I'm flying in such temperatures because I am addicted to RC flying like a bee is to honey--I'm sucking real hard, and I'm still sucking).

Can the danger to the LiPo batteries be an issue with the tx batteries?

Does the cold weather adversely affect lift? I tried my flying when it was warmer out, and was just wondering if the air temp noticeably affects lift (colder air is denser, warm air is more diffuse? This is AP Chem class think but rl be different).
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 04:22 AM
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It's not so much that any damage will happen to lipos in cold weather, it's more that they work better when warmer. If you can keep them at a normal room temp before flying, they will be fine.
I fly in -0 temps often. Matter of fact -6 today.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 04:23 AM
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Also you can check the links below--
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 04:43 AM
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Seoul, Korea
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What happens if they aren't at room temp when you use them? Does the motor not start?

(I'm asking because the nice flying spot I scoped out two days ago--big, unpeopled, unobstructed--however, was not accessible by car and required a longish uphill hike of about 15 minutes or so to access. I will probably be keeping all of my batteries on me, though probably not on my warm-body person since LiPos have been known to go bats at times).

I will have a field power supply (a small 12V battery, quarter the size of a car battery) and my charger. Will a small time of charging "warm up" the battery? or do I need to make it physically warmer?

Has anyone tried hot running their batteries: having the field power supply, connected to a charger, connected to the battery, connected to the ESC/rx/motor, while powering up? Does that help start up the battery in the cold? Kinda like jumping a cold car battery with jumper cables from another car idling.

I read a really cool Wiki page about Erich Hartmann, the best flying ace of all time with 352 kills, better than the Red Baron, where the later part of the article said that a captured Russian told the Germans how to start their aeroplane engines in the cold: pour gasoline into the engine sump or even start a fire under the engine.

Can I do something like that? (Starting a fire under a foamie plane or pouring warm liquid over the electronics of an electric motor system seem misguided though) I think hot starting seems the best.

I go up tomorrow, my only third flying attempt (first broke three props on my PZ J-3 Cub, second broke the one and only prop on my PZ Vapor). Whew, I was only able to fly two times in about a month, with tomorrow being my third! Work. Grrr.

The links below don't talk about hot starting, but the temperature around here is getting close to -10* C at least in the higher altitude spot I scoped. I guess that temp is within the range of ok for starting a cold LiPo.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 04:49 AM
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I would not advise connecting the lipo to the power system while charging.

If you are worried about keeping the lipos warm, get a ice cooler and put them in there with one of those instant hand warmers.
The lipos do not need to be jump started. They just don't preform as well when really cold. After a few minutes of flying, they would be up to temp anyhow.



I think you are reading too much into this.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 04:58 AM
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Ok, that's all good! I had no idea of the lower limit on temperature until I read one of the similar threads (-10*C for some LiPo).

Yes, I am reading too much into this. I feel like a teenager looking forward to the first kiss, and then asking a whole bunch of stupid questions about it before he does.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 06:19 AM
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There's really no issue with using lipo batteries in the cold. As another poster mentioned... get yourself a small, insulated cooler and put a small bottle of hot water into it, along with your batteries. That will keep the batteries warm until you're ready to use them. Once they're in the plane and drawing power, they'll self-heat to some extent. I flew my EasyStar all last winter that way, in temperatures down to 10 degrees F. I was still getting 25 minutes flying time (typical) from 2S/1500 Polyquest batteries.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 06:52 AM
Real Time Recon
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smith mt. lake VA.
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IF,an oz. or two wont bother your plane.Wrap one of these around your li-po...
http://www.shopwiki.com/Hand+Warmers
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 07:39 AM
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Kingston, Canada
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Demuddy: funny you mentioned about putting gas in the sump for easer starting. First car I had was a 41 Chev. n 1955. Cars back then had hand chokes. If I knew the next day it was going to be below 0 Fahrenheit. I'd pull the choke on before shutting off the engine, to flood the cyls with gas to dilute the oil.
Anyway, I made these foam envelopes to put the batts in, velcroed to the side of the profile fuses. The flap on the envelope is velcroed shut. The batt. generates enough heat to get the full run out of it. The cold doesn't hurt the batts, you just don't get the full run out of them.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 12:37 PM
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A mile high and 30 feet south of the 40th parallel
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The chemical reaction with in the LiPo batteries is slowed down and efficiency is lost when the cells get cold.

Now, when i take out my crawler with 1300Mah 3S, i dont notice it as much. If you left them in the cold all night, then you would.


but the lil dinky 1 cell lipos i use for my mSR and P51 are really affected by cooler temps.

i use a warm pocket, my ladies bosom, or a sunny dash board to keep them warm.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BEELZEBOB View Post
....my ladies bosom....
I like the way your think

But does she let you get them yourself.
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 12:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cherokee View Post
I like the way your think

But does she let you get them yourself.
if i can find them yea
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 12:56 PM
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I knew good things would come of this thread
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 03:07 PM
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San Antonio, TX.
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Hopefully I can fly tomorrow morning, the forcast if for clear and sunny with a temp of 16 degrees. Good tips from guys in the know, you guys up north are used to this but here in south Texas that is freakin cold!
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Old Jan 08, 2010, 03:14 PM
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Don't forget to dress warm and bring a thermos (or flask )
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