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Old Aug 19, 2008, 12:10 AM
Registered User
Toronto, Canada
Joined Jul 2008
98 Posts
Ok, I finally got my first Lipo and here's my first Lipo charging experience with the iCharger 106B with v3.06 firmware (in short, Flawless!!!).



It came with a total voltage of 7.75v and 3.82v on each cell. Definitely in the storage voltage range, and in balance.

I used my new, untested Lipo charger (iCharger 106B) to quick charge it in "Fast Charge" mode at 5A up to 4.15v per cell (I lowered the target max voltage just in case it overcharged it, to be on the safe side). It took in about 2700 mAh and got to exactly 8.30v, and 4.15v per cell (without balancing), with a CV amperage cutoff at 1Amp (fast charge setting).

I measured the battery voltage via the discharge leads at the charger output while it was charging (in CC phase), and my DMM showed about 0.03-0.04v higher voltage than the 106B. However, I think this may be happening due to voltage drop at high amps. I checked the pack's total voltage via its balance lead, and the voltage was exactly the same as what 106B displayed. As I mentioned above, when the charge terminated, the pack was exactly at 8.30v and each cell was 4.15v (which is the target max Lipo voltage that I lowered from the default 4.2v). Oh, and the charge took about 30 mins, quite normal.

Of course, I wasn't doing the balancing in this mode, so that remains to be tested. But at least Fast Charge (and therefore normal Lixx charge mode, most likely) seem to work very well, and accurately when the balance lead is plugged in (I should also try it without balance lead).

I put it into my MM5700-powered B4 with every option set to slowest, that is 100% traction control, Lowest motor timing (0), and 6v Lipo cut-off (this supposedly somewhat lowers the max acceleration even with a charged batt), and let it rip.

The power was absolutely incredible. I couldn't even go at full throttle on my local street (with a 24 tooth pinion lol), and the acceleration was just indescribable. Wasn't even pulling the throttle as fast as possible either.

I only ran it for about 12-13 mins, not race conditions, but it went down to 7.98v at the end (exactly 3.99v per cell) which means it used about 20% capacity (1000-ish mAh). I'll confirm this tomorrow when I recharge it. The Mamba ESC and motor temps were pretty hot (but in normal range, esp. with 24T pinion), but the battery wasn't even slightly warm (86*F-ish).

Of course this isn't a conclusive test, and the only other Lipo I can compare it to is a TrakPower 4900 that I've tried out on a track. It's hard to compare off-road performance vs. on-road, but I can tell this for sure, this pack doesn't disappoint. I'm sure its at least as powerful as the TrakPower 4900, if not more. In other words, it's waaay more than enough for my needs.

It remains to be seen how it will behave in race-conditions, esp. when fully charged, and running for 20~ mins at a time. It certainly isn't a dud, however, and I'm quite satisfied, considering the $105 price. :nod:
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 12:17 AM
Registered User
Toronto, Canada
Joined Jul 2008
98 Posts
I also want to mention, before ever charging my first Lipo, I've charged/discharged/formed/cycled my NiMH battery and the iCharger 106B always behaved exactly as expected. I've verified the input voltage/output voltage and even output amperage, and they were all reasonably accurate. It also detected a disconnected NiMH battery during a normal charge operation, and successfully terminated it. There were no bugs/problems in the menu navigation and display either. In fact, I'm often pleasantly surprised to see how much information it makes avaliable on the screen! It's great.

In short, I wasn't able to find any bugs so far, and it performed as per spec.

From what I vaguely remember reading here, it seems that a couple people had issues mostly related to balance charging Lipos taking too long, is that right?

Of course, I'm still yet to test that mode... Fingers crossed.
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 06:23 AM
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Germany
Joined Dec 2003
5,374 Posts
Nice to hear it works well for you
Junsi, an orbit Pocketlader user asked me to ask you about implementing a feature in the iCharger which the Pocketlader has.
It is called Auto-Discharging.
This option can be switched on and off, and a percent (%) value can be adjusted from 1%-100%.
This value determines how much the charger can reduce the initial current, once the discharge termination voltage is reached.

This is especially useful when one wants to discharge cells with a high internal resistance fast.
For example, someone wants to discharge 2000mAh AA cells with 2A discharge current.
Normally, the 1V/cell is reached very fast with this current, but the cells are not completely discharged yet.

Now, the user could set the Auto- Discharge to "On" and "50%".
This means, that, when the discharge termination voltage is reached, the discharge process is not terminated, but the discharge current is gradually reduced, so that the cells are able to keep the voltage. When the current is reduced to 50%, and the discharge termination voltage is reached, then the discharge process will be terminated.

Cheers,

Julian
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 06:55 AM
iCharger 106B user
Lab, Slovak Republic
Joined Jun 2008
400 Posts
nice feature
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 07:06 AM
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Melbourne, Australia
Joined May 2006
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Similar concept to the enhancement that was made to LiXx Storage Discharge in 3.05:

Quote:
*Alteration to program of Lixx Storage-during-discharging progress, the progress won't stop even the voltge reach termination voltge, it will continue the process after three beeps souding, and won't stop until the current reach 1/10C.(Gratitude to Fab66)
Junsi - More important than any new features, is there any news on 3.07 with fixes for the outstanding problems ? I know a lot of people are waiting for fixes and others are deciding not buy iChargers because of these issues. I think getting a good, clean version out to the user community with fixes for the incessant balancing and any other outstanding problems should be the urgent and top priority.
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 08:11 AM
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USA, IL, Champaign
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kgfly
Similar concept to the enhancement that was made to LiXx Storage Discharge in 3.05:



Junsi - More important than any new features, is there any news on 3.07 with fixes for the outstanding problems ? I know a lot of people are waiting for fixes and others are deciding not buy iChargers because of these issues. I think getting a good, clean version out to the user community with fixes for the incessant balancing and any other outstanding problems should be the urgent and top priority.
I would like to see the lead acid battery charging issue fixed in the update, otherwise I agree with kgfly that a rock solid firmware version is most urgent at this time along with the manufacturing issues fixed.
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 08:53 AM
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Toronto, Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phoenex
along with the manufacturing issues fixed.
Which are those?
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 04:13 PM
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USA, IL, Champaign
Joined Jul 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shurcooL
Which are those?
Poor soldering, loose screws, component rubbing on the side, wrong size banana plugs etc.
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 04:16 PM
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Toronto, Canada
Joined Jul 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phoenex
Poor soldering, loose screws, component rubbing on the side, wrong size banana plugs etc.
Ok, I guess I should be able to take mine apart to make sure none of those are present in my unit. No biggie. And my banana plugs are certainly the right size, something I'd never have to worry about since I bought it from eHeli. Robert there did a great job soldering an update port and updating the firmware, as well as include Deans output leads.

Of course I hope future batches will be of high quality. I think I've seen the complaints about poor soldering quite some time ago, and JunSi said they've already done something about that.
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 11:01 PM
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Joined Mar 2007
1,087 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Julez
Junsi, an orbit Pocketlader user asked me to ask you about implementing a feature in the iCharger which the Pocketlader has.
It is called Auto-Discharging.
This option can be switched on and off, and a percent (%) value can be adjusted from 1%-100%.
This value determines how much the charger can reduce the initial current, once the discharge termination voltage is reached.

This is especially useful when one wants to discharge cells with a high internal resistance fast.
For example, someone wants to discharge 2000mAh AA cells with 2A discharge current.
Normally, the 1V/cell is reached very fast with this current, but the cells are not completely discharged yet.

Now, the user could set the Auto- Discharge to "On" and "50%".
This means, that, when the discharge termination voltage is reached, the discharge process is not terminated, but the discharge current is gradually reduced, so that the cells are able to keep the voltage. When the current is reduced to 50%, and the discharge termination voltage is reached, then the discharge process will be terminated.

Cheers,

Julian
Hello Julian,

Thank you for your new idea!

I just checked with our engineer, and he told me that we can put "storage discharge" and "discharge" together, since the "storage discharge" owns the reduce mode.

Best regards,
Junsi
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Old Aug 19, 2008, 11:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kgfly
Junsi More important than any new features, is there any news on 3.07 with fixes for the outstanding problems ? I know a lot of people are waiting for fixes and others are deciding not buy iChargers because of these issues. I think getting a good, clean version out to the user community with fixes for the incessant balancing and any other outstanding problems should be the urgent and top priority.
Hello kgfly,

Thank you for reminding us.

Having not received the chargers with bugs from our testers, we are worry about releasing it too early. Once we investigated them, we will release a new version to the public.

Best regards,
Junsi
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Old Aug 20, 2008, 12:50 AM
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Joined May 2006
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Thank you for the update, keep us posted on progress please
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Old Aug 20, 2008, 06:21 AM
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Germany
Joined Dec 2003
5,374 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by junsi
Hello Julian,

Thank you for your new idea!

I just checked with our engineer, and he told me that we can put "storage discharge" and "discharge" together, since the "storage discharge" owns the reduce mode.

Best regards,
Junsi
Hi Junsi,

I think my explanation lacked precision.
The mode I suggested is thought especially for Nixx batterys. They normally have nothing to do with the storage discharge, which is only neccessary for Lixx batterys.
But perhaps I misunderstand your explanation, could you be so kind and provide some more details?

Cheers,

Julian
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Old Aug 20, 2008, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julez
I think my explanation lacked precision.
The mode I suggested is thought especially for Nixx batterys. They normally have nothing to do with the storage discharge, which is only neccessary for Lixx batterys.
Hello Julian,

Sorry to say that my explaination is not exact to understand, maybe it's language barrier.

Later, our engineer told me that in setup menu, we will add this function "discharge reduce" with ON/OFF, then the users can set I/% (I from 1 to 99), and you can adjust it in menu. Here % is to which will current drop.

That's to say, when you set in menu at 10%, if you put Nimh 2000mah discharge with 2A, after reaching 1V, current drops to 1.9....1.8....until 0.199A which is 10% of 2A discharge current at the beginning.

Coincident with another user's suggestion, will it be practical to your original idea?

Best wishes,
Junsi
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Old Aug 20, 2008, 11:16 PM
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Toronto, Canada
Joined Jul 2008
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Will that "discharge reduce" function apply to all battery discharge modes? Lixx/Nixx and Pb? Or just NiMH?

If it's all, I think that's exactly what Julez was suggesting.

P.S. I've charged my Lipo quite a few times now, and each time the results were great. Still using regular Lipo charge mode at the moment, not the balance charge one, since the cells are in balance anyway. I'm loving this charger (106B)! It's very precise and gets the cells up to exactly 4.19v, which is what I set in the options for LiPo.
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