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Old Mar 08, 2013, 04:51 AM
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Beware LiPo Parallel Charging Boards - fire!!

I was charging 2 x 5000 mAh 50C Turnigy's (each of which was identical in charge state, cell voltages and type/model) with one of these boards using an iCharger 3010B. I smelled burning so disconnected everything and opened up the parallel board. I couldn't believe what I saw:

1.) BLOWN CELL BALANCE TRACK

2.) DRY SOLDER JOINT ON NEGATIVE MAIN

3.) SOLDERING BY MONKEYS:


These are rated at 30Amps but what about the cell balance tracks? - what are they rated at? (or what is assumed by the manufacturer?)
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Last edited by RotorTalk; Mar 08, 2013 at 05:05 AM.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 05:16 AM
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That's why you should be using the FMA MPA board. Every thing is protected by fuses.
http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/Products_2/MPA_2

Glen
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 07:16 AM
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That's a pity, but on the other hand for 9$ or so, what did you expected? A Rolls Royce?

The FMA board is around 50$ and I think there is a reason to this. I ordered one 2 days ago, be careful because it doesn't come with the balacing cable to connect the charger to, which must be purchased separately.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 08:42 AM
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The balance traces are rated for something like 3A typically I think, maybe even only 2A.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 09:00 AM
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4A constant with a much higher burst.
Having looked at the board design closer, nice pictures, I can say this board is definately NOT rated at 30A. They should have installed a hard wire along the full lengh of the + and - shown in pictures #2 and 3.
What happened is you were pumping high amps into your packs and these traces got hot, so hot in fact that the Red and Black wires melted off the PCB.
This is a prime example of cheap Chinese knock-off's. They can copy but they do NOT understand everything that went into the original design, a design that everydayflyer originally advised to have this area beefed up to handle up to 30 amps.

What to do? You can easily fix the small burned trace to the balance connectors. Just use a single strand or more of wire from an old balance tap or... and solder it in a daisychain to each connector the trace is burned to. Simple. Done.

The larger traces should have a 16ga wire run the full lengh of this board for the + and - and solder flowed very thickly through the full length of these wires. Then, IMO, strip the insulation back another 1/8" and solder the red and black wires to this trace area, not the connector area, for a more hardy connection.

Rick
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Last edited by rampman; Mar 08, 2013 at 09:12 AM. Reason: Added more detail after looking closely at picturs
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 09:46 AM
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I don't think I've ever seen wire run the lenght. This review has a photo of the front/back of the current gen board from EPBuddy:
https://sites.google.com/site/tjingu...board-micro-v3
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 09:55 AM
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It looks like a newbie to soldering made that one, scary! Another good fused board comes from EPBuddy. The Chinese are masters at copying. I have about a dozen watches I bought in Shenzhen that look amazing but only ran for a few weeks..

Harry
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 09:56 AM
Blacked out 350z - Texas
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Thanks for this post, I have the same parallel board and I will watch mine even closer now when charging 2X5000mah batteries.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 10:05 AM
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If Asian factories are trying to use lead-free solder, crappy solder joints are not surprising. Use only "leaded" type 60/40 rosin core solder for home soldering.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 10:17 AM
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Garbage In = Garbage Out. You get what you pay for. Buy cheap buy twice.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohmic View Post
Buy cheap buy twice.
+1!

Or, buy cheap and then spend some time correcting soldering errors.

This sort of crappy workmanship is systemic to many Asian manufacturers that have zero quality control. For many of these manufacturers, QC is at point of use.

Even more troubling are some of the solder connections on lipoly connectors that I have seen. I've witnessed some solder joints that were so bad that they would most assuredly reflow and open when under a heavy current load. Since I am a crimped APP guy, this is of little concern to me personally but I always recommend that all users remove and resolder all connections that cannot be visually inspected.

Mark
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 11:16 AM
kad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RotorTalk View Post
I was charging 2 x 5000 mAh 50C Turnigy's (each of which was identical in charge state, cell voltages and type/model) with one of these boards using an iCharger 3010B. I smelled burning so disconnected everything and opened up the parallel board. I couldn't believe what I saw:
These are rated at 30Amps but what about the cell balance tracks? - what are they rated at? (or what is assumed by the manufacturer?)
Who was that board from? HK? I've been looking at the newer fuse protected model from EPBuddy myself....

-K
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 11:52 AM
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Who's board is this? If it is not an EP Buddy, then it is a damn good copy of one from the outside. Opening mine up tonight (gen-u-wine EP) to see what they look like.
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grimbeaver View Post
I don't think I've ever seen wire run the lenght...
Correct but I don't think he can manufacture a daughterboard PCB like my EP Buddy board in order to triple up on surface area so his best option is to do as I wrote, or, actually replace it entirely with a better quailty board.

Rick
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Old Mar 08, 2013, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RotorTalk View Post
I smelled burning so disconnected everything and opened up the parallel board.
Did you smell burning shortly after connecting the packs, or after the charge cycle has started?
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