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Old Aug 19, 2004, 10:43 AM
Giz
Tony Rogers
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Bath, UK
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FlightPower Lipo Pack and Balancer

Has anyone seen or better yet tried this new lipo pack and cell balancing system from FlightPower? It looks quite promising to me.

I have avoided lipo so far on the grounds of safety, particularly when charging. It seems from reading posts in these forums that the best way to use packs is to charge in parallel and discharge in series (correct me if I am wrong because I am not a lipo user) as this will both fully charge and balance the cells. However, presumably, as my charger will only go up to 5.5 Amps, this means that charging 10 2500 mAh cells would take nearly 5 hours (10 x 2500 / 1000 / 5.5).

It looks to me like this new pack and balancing system might get the same result with series charging? It claims that individual cells are monitored and each cell's charge is terminated as they become full, allowing the other cells to continue charging. Is this possible or is really charging each cell in parrallel anyway?

If it works as I hope it does, this could be enough to get me off the fence and into lipos. However, they are !*&^!$" expensive though
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Old Aug 19, 2004, 11:47 AM
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Victoria, BC Canada
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They work great!

I took delivery of six of the Duralite/Flight Power 5S2P 5000 mAh packs and two of their balancing units at the beginning of the week. The FPEX balancing unit is very simple to use and works great. You hook it up to the 10 pin connector on the pack and charge the pack as usual. When any parallel bank of cells reaches full charge the balancing unit shuts down the charge to that bank. When this happens the LED for the bank of parallel cells comes on. As each bank closes in on fully charged the light blinks more rapidly and finally come on permanently indicating. With my packs all of the LED's started blinking more or less simultaneously which I take to indicate that the cells were very well balanced at the outset.

This balancing unit is exactly what I was looking for. It is idiot proof and assures both safe charging and balanced packs without having to become some sort of electronics guru.

Brian
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Old Aug 19, 2004, 12:07 PM
Giz
Tony Rogers
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Thanks Brian. Does this mean that a 5s2p pack charged on a Schulze at a maximum of 5.6 Amps will charge the pack in about an hour? I think from what you have said this would be true?

How does the charger cope as each bank of cells is switched out? Presumably, you start out charging a 5s pack which then drops to 4s as the first bank of cells becomes charged, and so on down to 1s? This sounds like it wouldn't work with most charger which probably means it does not work like this

How does it work?
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Old Aug 19, 2004, 05:50 PM
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http://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=157151
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Old Aug 19, 2004, 06:28 PM
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Last edited by Charlie Wang; Aug 19, 2004 at 07:13 PM.
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Old Aug 19, 2004, 06:52 PM
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Brian, is Duralite reselling Flight Power (from the UK) batteries? This is the first I've heard of this. Is Duralite labelling them as the Thunder Plus line?
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Old Aug 19, 2004, 07:08 PM
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FPEX Balancers

GIZ/Charlie ... I'm sorry I can't answer your question. From what I can tell the FPEX unit works as advertised but as far as the detailed electronics are concerned I'm not your guy. I suggest that you contact Flight Power and see what they have to say.

Adam ... the batteries that I bought from Duralite are labelled "E Plus Gold" I bought six 5S2P 5000 mAh packs and two 3S2P 5000 mAh packs. They appear to be very nicely made and I'm off for my second flying session with them on my Fury ION tonight. They appear to be similar to the Flight Power packs but you would have to contact Duralite to find out for sure.

RD ... thanks for the thread reference.

Time to go turn rotors.

Brian
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Old Oct 04, 2004, 07:05 PM
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"how does it work"

The cell balancer unit absobs charge current in parallel with cells that pass a voltage reference allowing remaining cells to continue to charge until they reach parity - it does not close out cells or change the apparent cell count. The process overlays the CV phase at the end of the charge cycle. Note that these units are built to an exclusive FlightPower spec for full compatibility with the popular Schulze line of chargers. One of the advantages of this system is that you can safely charge multiple packs in series so long as the packs are reasonably well matched - i.e. flown together from a full charge in the same model.



Julian
www.flightpower.co.uk
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Old Oct 05, 2004, 10:39 AM
Giz
Tony Rogers
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlightPower
"how does it work"

One of the advantages of this system is that you can safely charge multiple packs in series so long as the packs are reasonably well matched
Julian

How would you connect more than one pack in series for charging? Wouldn't you have to connect them with the multiplug thingy?

The balancer/protection seems like a good device but it seems very expensive. I am currently considering Irate 3100 4s1p + 4S charge guard vs Flightpower 3200 4s2p + FPEX2. Irate is $153 + $15 - about £96. Flightpower is £114 + £56 = £170. That's a lot extra to pay for balancing!
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Old Oct 05, 2004, 11:01 AM
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Series charging - each pack has a cell balancer unit connected, charging takes place through the main leads - it's the main leads that would be connected in series just the same as for discharging in a multi-pack model.

The cell balancer unit is optional equipment that can be used on multiple packs.

Julian
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Old Oct 18, 2004, 04:39 PM
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So the cell balancer is only needed for mulitple packs? have i read this right. So if i was wanting a 5s2p 5000mah pack, then i wouldnt need the balancer, unless i wanted to add a 3s2p pack to it to give me the 8s2p i needed?

secondly, other threads mentioned that these cells were being supplied/used by thunderpower. Any truth in that, and if so are they the same as the TP gen 1 or gen 2 cells?
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Old Oct 18, 2004, 05:16 PM
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The cell balancer unit is for balancing multipe cells in a single pack. It also overcomes a safety issue when balancing multiple packs all charged in series.

Thunder power do not supply FlightPower cells (they used to have our old G1 cells back in the days of 5C). The size shape, weight and output of our cells in our 5000mAh packs is FlightPower specific.

Julian
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Old Oct 18, 2004, 07:19 PM
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Not sure who to ask this question to, julian or charles, but i can understand the benefits of having a cell balancer, but how do TP get away with not building this facility in, or do they have something else in their packs to do an equivalent job?
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