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Old Aug 28, 2012, 02:00 AM
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Question about charging a LIPO in stages

Hi i recently bought the firebird stratos and it comes with a lipo charger for plugging into my car cigarette lighter socket, only problem is my car is new and will completely shuts the battery off to your headlights and external sockets etc when the ignition is off.

so my battery will not charge unless i am driving somewhere. i drive to and from work every day and it takes about half an hour each way, is it ok to charge fully charge the lipo battery over the course of the two journeys? or will it take longer / damage the battery?

i cannot find an answer to this query
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 04:04 AM
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Athens
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There is no problem for a lipo battery to charge it in two or more stages. But i would not recommend to charge a plane lipo battery inside your car using the cigarette lighter socket ,especially during driving. Thinking about the failure possibility of the circuity used in all those cheap RTF plane chargers and all those flamable meterials inside a car ,fire hazard is real.
It is better to solder two wires to the charger plug (one red for + and one black for -) and connect it directly to the car battery when your car is stationary and of course the charger and the battery outside the car.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 04:07 AM
3JJ
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No harm done. You can stop and start the charging as many times as you want. If you do not want to take a one hour drive after each use, how about getting a power supply with cigarette socket, just make sure it can deliver enough power for your charger.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 04:20 AM
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thanks for the replies folks, i am glad to hear that it wont harm the battery to do it in two / three stages.

however I dont think i will be soldering any wires or connecting it to my battery directly as that sounds more likely to cause me (clumsy) an injury than doing it the way suggested in the manual.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 07:07 AM
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Charging a lipo in your car is not wise.

I find it strange that your power outlets on your car shut off when the ignition is turned off?
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by tacx View Post
Charging a lipo in your car is not wise.

I find it strange that your power outlets on your car shut off when the ignition is turned off?
as i explained, i have to be in the car with the engine running or at least powered on. i am checking the battery every 5 minutes making sure it is not puffing up or getting hot, i do not leave it unattended.

My car is about a year old, the power shut off seems to be designed to stop you flattening the battery by leaving the head lights / side lights on when you finish driving.

i cannot charge the battery without the keys in the ignition and switched on, i wouldn't leave my car unattended with the keys in the ignition ever.

this is (essentially) the device that comes with the stratos



if there is some sort of connector i can get to allow it to charge from the mains supply, that would be better for me
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 07:37 AM
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Power outlets in cars have always shut off when the ignition is off, I've never owned a car that doesn't do that. Just turn on the ignition, nothing says you have to start the car, you just have to turn the key far enough.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by grimbeaver View Post
Power outlets in cars have always shut off when the ignition is off, I've never owned a car that doesn't do that. Just turn on the ignition, nothing says you have to start the car, you just have to turn the key far enough.
like i said, i could do that, but it I wouldn't want to leave the vehicle unattended with the keys in, nor do i want to sit in my car (unless i am driving).

the question i had was more to do with what the effects of charging the battery in two or three stages might be, rather than how to charge it.

i have charged it this way twice now and just wanted to make sure that i wasn't damaging it or wasting additional time because it needed to be done in one charge.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 08:01 AM
Southern Pride
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Haralson County GA. USA
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Not the best permanent solution but for something simple

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Schumacher...ndingMethod=rr

Similiar ones available from auto parts stores, Home Depot. Lowes etc..

You should recharge these after use as the internal battery will last longer if you do not discharge it very much.

Charles
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 08:04 AM
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As the other posters have said no problem charging it that way,what we dont like is you doing it in the car.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 08:32 AM
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thanks again for the replies, i have read in the manual, that i should never leave the battery unattended when charging etc and as explained i cannot do that anyway.

if i am sat right next to it, checking it by touch and sight every few minutes, plus using the charger as intended what's the potential problem?
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 08:52 AM
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I would never.... ever charge a Lipo in my car since you never know when something is going to happen with them. In just a matter of seconds hey can puff and explode and you wouldn't have time to react.

Why not charge the batteries at home before you go flying ? Buy a cheap charger from Hobbyking that you could use at home or at the field.

LiPo Explosion (2 min 17 sec)
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by gonzalo38 View Post
I would never.... ever charge a Lipo in my car since you never know when something is going to happen with them. In just a matter of seconds hey can puff and explode and you wouldn't have time to react.

Why not charge the batteries at home before you go flying ? Buy a cheap charger from Hobbyking that you could use at home or at the field.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9mcN...layer_embedded
but couldn't the same thing be possible in my house? setting fire to my house too?
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzalo38 View Post
I would never.... ever charge a Lipo in my car since you never know when something is going to happen with them. In just a matter of seconds hey can puff and explode and you wouldn't have time to react.

Why not charge the batteries at home before you go flying ? Buy a cheap charger from Hobbyking that you could use at home or at the field.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9mcN...layer_embedded
I don't have sound on this computer, but I see a video of a bunch of people wearing jackets. So I'm going to assume they were charging in the cold and over charged the pack completely ignoring the warnings that when charging in cold weather you have to reduce your end voltage. If you treat your batteries right your chance of something going wrong is extremely slim.
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Old Aug 28, 2012, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by grimbeaver View Post
I don't have sound on this computer, but I see a video of a bunch of people wearing jackets. So I'm going to assume they were charging in the cold and over charged the pack completely ignoring the warnings that when charging in cold weather you have to reduce your end voltage. If you treat your batteries right your chance of something going wrong is extremely slim.
i have just looked at a few of these "exploding lipo" videos on youtube and it seems that most of them are of people intentionally exploding / mistreating these batteries or are playing around with batteries that have reached the end of their lives.

This information here:-
http://www.rcmods.co.uk/lipo_battery_safety_tips.php
and here
http://www.bmfa.org/resources/lipobatteries.html

suggests that it is safe to charge them with the included charger for use in a car cigarrete lighter socket, adding other devices and or tampering / soldering wires to it sounds much more likely to cause me problems.
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