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Old Dec 15, 2004, 12:37 AM
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Lipo storage box

I picked up a couple surplus army ammo boxes to carry my lipo packs in. I plan to outfit them with a form of heat/fire insulation. I don't know exactly what yet. I'm interested in opinions/feedback...

1. use small compartments like tall beer cans inside the box, with sand filled in between the cans. And maybe a bag of sand to put above all the "can compartments".

2. What about using clay or ceramic floor tiles to line the box or make compartments. I'm sure this would provide good heat insulation if done right.

3. I saw a "welders blanket" at the store, very thick flame resistant material. I think that would be a good lightweight and easy way to line the box and make pouches to put packs into.

My thought is that any of these methods should do an adequate if not excellent job of containing a "lipo-nuclear meltdown".

I have the box pictured, as well as one about 4x the size. I could even store the smaller box inside the big steel ammo case at home for extra protection.

BTw, these are water/air tight boxes, so I assume it would be good to put a small air vent somewhere.

Pics of smaller box:
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 12:44 AM
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Here's the bigger box with the small one inside.

I got them at Northern Tools for $10 and $15

The welder's blankets are $35
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 04:48 AM
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Rather than try to contain a fire from one LiPo spreading to many others in the same container, I simply use separate containers with a limited number of LiPos in each one.

It happens I use Brinks boxes, but your ammo cans should work OK, if you scrape out some of the sealing gasket so effluent can vent. Your boxes are made of relatively thick sheet steel and I wouldn't bother to insulate them - the heat from a fire has to go someplace. Just let it heat the steel, which will then radiate the heat to atmosphere.

BTW, there have been very few reports of accidental LiPo fires in firesafe containers. Could it be that the folks who use firesafes are also universally using safest charging practices? As Electroman has wisely said: "Safety is a matter of discipline". These folks may have developed an overall safe-charging routine which they follow without fail.

- RD
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 07:12 AM
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Pretty creative thinking on the ammo box setup. But I have to agree with RD. The Brinks fire-resistant steel boxes don't require any additional investment or modification as they already have fire-resistant insulation between two layers of steel. At ~$10 apiece, having one for each pack shouldn't break the bank.
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 08:48 AM
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What is a good container to _transport_ Lipos to and from flying? In a car--small or otherwise-- there isn't a lot of room and the Lipo box is going to be on, under or next to something. I'm thinking that a Brinks box is best, but wonder about venting hot gasses or flames in the confined cabin.

--Bill
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 09:20 AM
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I'm currently looking for some fire-resistent foam to add to my Brinks box. This will be used to transport back and forth.

I'm guessing it would be safer to put the container outside the car in the shade. The car can bring the temp up (depending on the day).
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 10:15 AM
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Yeah, I was concerned about one bad pack burning up all the lipos in the box. That would not be good. If I made at least 2-3 good compartments maybe it would protect the "innocent" lipos in the box.

Good point about just using several boxes. I should have also mentioned that there is a smaller box that is only $5 or $8 ea... and about half the size of my smaller one or less. They would make a nice cary case, and you could just put a couple packs in each one.

That's a pretty cheap and easy solution.

Where do you get the brinks boxes for $10?
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 10:58 AM
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 08:30 PM
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RD
Thanks for the tip on the Brinks Security Box from Walmart.
Nice sized box and with a $8.74 price tag, you don't have to store all your eggs in one basket.
Bill
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Old Dec 15, 2004, 08:34 PM
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Yikes, they're down to $8.74 now?
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Old Dec 26, 2004, 10:21 PM
Zeroman
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Am i missing something here.If you have an air tight steel container, why would you put vent holes in it.If there is no oxygen,theres no fire.I know very little about Lipo's but im all most certain they wont burn in a vaccuum.Regards Chris
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Old Dec 26, 2004, 10:41 PM
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chris,
I think the concern is that the container could be overpressurized to the extent that it would fail. I concur with you that we have a no oxygen/no fire situation but the thermal energy released by the cell is an unknown in regards to it's abiity to heat the air inside the container and therefore increase the pressure. Could probably calculate that from the amount of energy in the battery..........
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Old Dec 26, 2004, 11:08 PM
Zeroman
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That makes sence hoppy.I new it could not be that simple.Chris.
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