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Nov 20, 2001, 06:57 AM
Time for me to Fly...
Mr. Wiz's Avatar

Rechargable batteries for kids toys


The other day the wife was complaining about how many batteries the kids are going through in their protable CD players, Game Boys and such. I was thinking of getting some Nicads for them to use instead of buying all those Alkaline batteries. Do any of you out there use Nicads for toys like this?

I'd be needing mostly AA and C size batteries. My concern is that they Nicads don't have as much voltage as alkalines and I'm not sure how I'd gang them up for charging.

TIA,

Wiz
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Nov 20, 2001, 07:23 AM
Registered User
I'd suggest that you try NiMH instead of NiCd. In most cases, NiMH will last more than twice as long before requiring a recharge. You can buy cells and chargers at local discount stores such as WalMart, which carries both Energizer and Rayovac. You will save a lot of money, and reduce your family's footprint at the local landfill as well.
Nov 20, 2001, 08:25 AM
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Mark Wood's Avatar
At the same places you find the batteries you will likely also find gang chargers designed to charge the loose cells.


mw
Nov 20, 2001, 08:47 AM
Registered User
What Dave said.

I've been using NiCd and NiMH rechargeable batteries for my (two) kids' toys for some 8 years now and it has worked fine for me. Over time I've collected about 60 AA size, 20 C size, 12 AAA size and 5 9-volt cells and still I have to kindly ask my kids to borrow me a couple of cells for daddy's flashlight.
I now use a little booklet to somewhat trace the whereabouts of the batteries...

The lower voltage of the rechargeable batteries is not a problem, except maybe for digital clocks.

Some toys have a warning label: 'do not use rechargable batteries'. This is not because of the lower voltage but because these batteries can deliver more current then an alkaline cell in case of a short circuit. Never had any problem with this...

The number of batteries you need these days is amazing:
tower crane + remote control: 10 AA cells.
elctronic keyboard: 5 AA cells
pistol + target set: 10 AA cells
Nikko RC-car: 8 AA cells + 1 9V
...

Cheers
Danny
Nov 20, 2001, 09:09 AM
Registered User
Check out Circuit City or Good Guys (I can't remember which this morning), for their Monster brand batteries. It is the same lable as Monster Cable if you're familiar with Car Audio equipment. They have 1800 mah NiMH AA's. Their isn't much of a price difference between those and WallMarts.
Nov 20, 2001, 10:27 AM
Time for me to Fly...
Mr. Wiz's Avatar
So in other words.....don't bother trying to rig up something with my Infinity using Sanyo cells.

What about charging cam corder and cordless tools?.....Use the supplied charger with those too?

It would seem that there would be an advantage to using my better charging equipment. Is that not so?

Does anyone out there use their expansive charger/cyclers to deal with battery charging jobs other than our planes?

Wiz
Nov 20, 2001, 11:28 AM
Registered User
poobs's Avatar
IMHO
The only time your fancy charger would have the edge on the regular overnight chargers that are sold for the household rechargeable batteries is when you want to change the a bit faster.
The fancy chargers can also (sometimes) improve a cell that is on the way south.
Nov 20, 2001, 12:21 PM
Registered User
scirocco's Avatar
I just use one of those 4 cell holders that RS or any electronics supplier has, with a couple of banana plugs attached, plug into the Supernova and I'm good to go. With 3 Gameboys and walkmans etc it's worthwhile.

Out of curiosity, anyone know the typical capacity in mAh of alkaline cells? I'm guessing it's not 1600.
Nov 20, 2001, 04:37 PM
Registered User
I think our $$ chargers can do much more than just charge our fligth packs.

I use it to charge my cordless drill battery pack: supplied charger is supposed to do the job in 3 hours, Infinity II charger needs just about 35' (no more 3 hour lunch break for me )

My eldest son's Nikko RC car came with a 8 cell battery pack and a plug-into-the-wall charger that's supposed to load the pack in 4-5 hours. Now you go and tell him he can drive the car for 10' and then has to wait half a day... Hooked the pack up to dad's charger and in just under 25' the job is done.

The Infinity II charger carries a 24 month warranty: let's use it to its full extend.

OTOH if you're in no hurry then its nice to have a couple of C/10 chargers to do a nice overnight charge.
Nov 20, 2001, 06:04 PM
Registered User
If you really want to save $$$, get yourself a handful of those Sanyo Nimh. Let's face it, how many AA or AAA alkalines do you go through in a month? My Handspring eats batteries like crazy and so is my MP3/CD player. I replaced them with Maha batteries and that seem to be last longer. Once I found out about the Sanyo HR-3U (AA size) and HR-4U (AAA size), I use them exclusively. I only need to replace my Handspring's battery once a month.

They can be ordered from me for $2.50 a piece.