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HomeAircraftHelicopterHelicopter Main Discussion › Lipo Smoke Off, Why A LIPO FAILS ON THE CHARGER
10-25-2014 06:07 PM  3 years agoPost 1
icanfly

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ontario

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Umm, here's what happened when I did not trust my instinct to tell me that something was wrong with this lipo. I spooled up my 300 with this lipo after leaving it alone for a week, throttle response died almost completely before I backed off. I noticed a negligible amount of heat on one side of it before setting it on the charger. When I put all my 4 lipos on the charger the state of charge read 12.20 telling me the other batteries might have been fully juiced up, only the lipo I used earlier was low, I was away a week so I could not entirely remember the state of charge an all 4 lipos. They seemed fine so I walked away to try fly with another ready lipo.

I grab the alternative lipo and fly outside for the next 5 minutes, 2min of air time and 3 setting up after a few attempts at getting the gyro to signal code go. Bring it down and think nothing of the batteries I had on the charger. Come inside the back door and smell a funny smoke coming from where the lipos were being charged. Race to investigate and see smoke coming from the lipo I tried to fly with, the one that almost died. When I charge these doozies I place them with the cells vertical, fortunately the one cell in the smoking lipo had separated itself a little from the other cells so the heat did not transfer much. At the same time the cell had de-soldered itself from the board it was originally linked to. I pull the pack off the charger immediately after unplugging the charger. Knowing at least no other cells are going to be affected by the pos one that smoked off I grab the deans connector and carry it outside like a dead rat. There I separate the one cell completely and sink the other cells in cold water to get a thermal coolin.

Really dodged one this time and preparation gave me the advantage. Being only an 1800mah it left a small smoke cloud and I have an exhaust fan in a window to vent in event fumes of one or another nature are filling the room, on it went full blast for a half hour, no smokey scent to speak of when I checked it minutes ago, fan is on again.

A few lessons to take heed of, ALWAYS VOLTAGE CHECK A PACK IF IT APPEARS TO HAVE DRAINED IN THE HELI WHILE SPOOLING UP, it's always one cell that starts bad things to follow.

CHARGE PACKS WHILE STANDING THEM ON THEIR SIDE, in the event one cell goes south and vents hot gasses it will puff and push other cells away from it (fortunately if the cell is on the outside and the wrapper melts which it probably should).

DOUSE THE PACK IN COLD WATER TO COOL IT, just like they do at the nuke plant.

Never STORE OTHER LIPOS NEAR THOSE BEING CHARGED. I had a handful of other lipos not being used on the same charging tray, it does not help your odds should a single cell erupt and begin a chain reaction. When I charge my lipos they look like a quad-copter and the packs on their sides.

daym that was close, always be prepared and check your cells periodically for even voltage distribution. GET THAT VOLTAGE METER WORKING FOR YOUR OWN PEACE OF MIND. You know, I looked at my voltage meter before I set the packs on the charger figuring nothing can hurt me what's a little voltage, discovering a little misdirected voltage can lead to some some serious destruction, like the size of the spark in your automobile.

It hasn't been a smooth past few days, time to recoup and focus on important priorities before flying again, it has been a nice summer.

Ohh, and cover your eyes with goggles if you can, the smoke will sting them if unprotected, WASH THOROUGHLY if you have exposed them to lipo smoke.

You gotta be careful when abusing lipos, the 1800mah was slightly puffed already before re-charging, biggest nono was ganging it with other lipos that were mostly charged already and not checking the voltages of all the packs and cells before charging again, you do that or else, capiche'? It was first in line and one cell took the hit of charging amps. These things aren't perfect.

Good thing I didn't go for an errand and only flown for a couple of minutes instead, we don't want to consider the possibilities on that (I only say what I want you to hear).

Nuff said. my bad.

I think lipos could have a vent hole like that of capacitors, and a thin sheet of aluminum between cells would also decrease the risk of total disaster, it's always ONE CELL that kicks off the whole mess, ONE CELL, 'zall it takes.

I've envisioned a lipo cell design with failure management and losses kept to a total minimum, one where each cell is always separate from the others. On a charger any offending cell is recognized and shut off not like a whole pack would be, (maybe it would maybe it wouldn't, will the charger know quickly enough in present form?).

Just checked again (half hour later), BALANCE CONNECTOR from the distribution plate WAS OFF THE CHARGER at the time of failure, ohh joy.

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10-25-2014 07:25 PM  3 years agoPost 2
payne1967

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uk

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i think what your saying is never leave a lipo that is charging
if you leave the room remove the lipo from the charger and room
better still charge outside

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10-25-2014 08:53 PM  3 years agoPost 3
icanfly

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ontario

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and CHECK ALL YOUR CONNECTORS if you have been away from the charger for an extended period of time.

My charging station has an "IN" and "OUT", used and charged side so I don't mix them up, mostly. Being away for awhile this time I was not sure and that was 4 amps into one 1800mah lipo or 4s + un balanced.

I picked up a lipo from a friend who told of his own mistakes costing about 6 lipos already, got to make sure all connectors are on properly.

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10-26-2014 12:20 PM  3 years agoPost 4
rpat

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Weirton, W. Va.

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Sound's like you should get yourself a lipo checker that reads each cell and gives you the percentage state of the lipo. I have mine by my side at all times and if there is any doubt about the state of the lipo that I am handling the cell pro goes into service, it reads each cell and lets you know the general state of the lipo.

trex 700fbl cal30,minititan,, trx600fbl,trex250,logo 500,Velocity N2

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10-26-2014 03:50 PM  3 years agoPost 5
icanfly

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ontario

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true true, a little diligence never hurt.

I wish I could catch myself every time I've echewed something thinking nahhh,,, nothing will happen. I have a battery alarm that reads individual cell voltage, so easy.

This one taught me to check all lipos going on the charger, check connections are proper and complete, don't ignore a lipo that isn't performing 100%, carelessness could have become a nightmare, think of the worst possible scenario, that one.

My idea for lipos is to have a collective socket for singular cells so you can add or subtract cells and pull out ones not matched to other ones more effectively. Lipo cell use in that form would not cost an entire pack of 6 cells in the event of failure, only the one that is died or tired. It's not a difficult plan, just look at the micro lipos and fab a socket for however many cells your heli uses to fly, it'd be a whole lot wiser to manage cells that way. If I were to make a socket for single cell micro batteries I could get whatever voltage by parallel or series connection, the mah would be as big as the lipo capacity, c rating as specified, separate sockets for different c ratings like 20c 25c, 30c, 35c, etc, red green blue, yellow coded to prevent user mixing of cells. Doesn't have to weigh much and WAYYYY better than tossing a whole pack due to one downed cell never mind the safer charging aspect. Million dollar idea? YAHH but I don't make lipos, if I did you would see my design in implementation already.

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10-26-2014 04:16 PM  3 years agoPost 6
HeimD

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the great southwest

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i think what your saying is never leave a lipo that is charging
if you leave the room remove the lipo from the charger and room
better still charge outside
Yup, a definite NO DUH that we've all always known with not charging in a place you don't want burned down and NEVER leaving them unattended. People, like the OP, already know this but, for whatever reason, they choose to ignore this sage advice that's been around forever so they go and do it anyway and do it with a lipo they they've already identified as "questionable".

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10-26-2014 05:38 PM  3 years agoPost 7
rpat

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Weirton, W. Va.

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That's another thing....a questionable lipo JUST AIN'T WORTH GUESSING AT IT. Take it out side and but a bullet in it and end the guess work. I don't know what you guys do but I shoot mine and let the magic smoke out of it, after that it is harmless.

trex 700fbl cal30,minititan,, trx600fbl,trex250,logo 500,Velocity N2

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10-26-2014 06:14 PM  3 years agoPost 8
TMoore

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Cookeville, TN

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I check every pack with a cheap cell checker before they go on the charger. If the cells aren't close the pack gets pitched.

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10-26-2014 06:18 PM  3 years agoPost 9
JasonJ

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North Idaho

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I spike them with a tent stake and a hammer, vampire style. One thing I have noticed is the questionable batteries don't seem to have a lot of energy in them. They have all just spit a fairly low amount of smoke and didn't burn a huge amount. I did have to spike a 6s batt with only one flight on it due to a crash damaging the battery. That batt put a lot of energy out, I would have hated to have that thing light off in my car or house.

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10-26-2014 07:10 PM  3 years agoPost 10
icanfly

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ontario

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I check every pack with a cheap cell checker before they go on the charger. If the cells aren't close the pack gets pitched.
you see what a waste it is throwing a pack because one cell is inconsistent with the others. Crazy money being chucked for no other reason than fear of rebuilding a lipo. Fortunately I fear not the task of repairing a lipo and my tx lipo is prime example. I left the thing on one fine night, the tx, morning came and only one cell died while the remaining two cells were 100%. After I bought a second tx lipo the same thing happened, left the tx on for 4+hours another cell dies the other ones fine. Dissect the first lipo removing one good cell, open the other lipo and replace the diffused cell in that one, chango presto I have a good tx lipo. Same thing happens to that lipo and another repair is undertaken with the remaining cell from the original tx lipo and this is what I have been using fro most of the summer with excellent results.

How much does a lipo cost? and how many would I have bought if I were to have tossed my tx lipo every time one cell went to sleep in a pack? $20x4 minus original 2 units = anyway you can see what I mean. Certainly stretched some dollars there, would have been simpler if the cells had a unifying connector end to plug and play one cell at a time SEE?.

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10-26-2014 07:32 PM  3 years agoPost 11
TMoore

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Cookeville, TN

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Your POV is not shared here. I'm not fixing sub standard packs. Modern lipos are not designed to be repaired. Fixing nicads is trivial but fixing lipos is not smart, IMHO.

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10-26-2014 10:26 PM  3 years agoPost 12
icanfly

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ontario

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Your POV is not shared here
car and plank guys do it here and there, repairs are not really repairs when you look at the situation from a different perspective. Say you have a $120 dalla 6s pack which makes each cell $20 bucks. Down goes one and my patented system (pending, lol, autocad/solidworks) allows that one to be replaced without solder and or "REPAIR". and so,
Modern lipos are not designed to be repaired.
that's pretty clear, Now imagine packs that cost even MORE.

I'm sure many a lipo heli pilot has questioned why throw away perfectly good MONEY, doh, 'f only someone could take the single dead cell out and put in a good one.

In short, it isn't a conspiracy to sell packs of junk you'll knowingly toss when one little aspect fails, they do know the price of cells will have to drop to keep selling the amount sold under the present system, sell six one goes bad buy another 6. Where-as, buy 6 one goes south buy one or two, other 4, 5, 6, 11, live a happy and purposeful life to a ripe old age, in my app.

Regarding repair, guys run amok when they start mixing mah and c ratings, 'zall.

Lipos really beg for a system like AA, C, D, AAA, etc type batteries, but what do I know.

Should I invest in solidworks ($$ permitting), single cell end cap/tab, docking receptacle, whatever wire output conn, safe at last safe----at----last, ahh yea.

Anuther thing, the cell that got the 4 amp jolt was at the positive lead where the lipo vented in frustration, thankfully de-soldering the positive output wire to the remaining cells. Small consolation as I now have an eighteen hundred mah 2cell lipo, teehee.

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10-26-2014 11:34 PM  3 years agoPost 13
unclejane

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santa fe, NM, USA

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Well hooking up multiple lipos in series or parallel or both to get to a desired cell count or amperage range is a time honored tradition. It also has the advantage of requiring only partial replacement if only one cell or batt fails. So if you have the tools, skills and patience to do it within a pack, why not?

I don't personally so I ditch the whole thing once something goes bad in it. I run it down with lightbulbs then short the main leads. Shooting or stabbing them sounds like fun too, tho.

LS

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10-26-2014 11:40 PM  3 years agoPost 14
TMoore

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Cookeville, TN

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Should I invest in solidworks ($$ permitting), single cell end cap/tab, docking receptacle, whatever wire output conn, safe at last safe----at----last, ahh yea.
I would. The Pro Version will run around $7,800.00 US and 15% per year of that for maintenance plus a 3D mouse and hardware to run it on. If you don't know how to draw it might take you a couple of years to learn how to do basic models and assemblies. I doubt you would have much time to fly after you get setup.

TM

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10-27-2014 12:35 AM  3 years agoPost 15
icanfly

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ontario

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Pro Version will run around $7,800.00 US and 15% per year of that for maintenance plus a 3D mouse and hardware to run it on
not going to have that anytime soon, (unless, huh, un-less the opposite of un-more, should I fall into wealth anytime soon)

Look at the big picture, I mean packs, one cell goes bad on a $180 dollar pack how much are the remaining cells worth? gonna toss that in the disposal every time? Me? NO CAN DO, and I don't see why everyone is so careless either, don't make sense. What if the present packing of lipos to achieve amps and mah were applied in the auto industry. A $5000k lipo upchucked because of one cell, or goes kaboom because the cells were ganged in such a way to represent one giant pack, HUH?

are we not absolute IDIOTS for cheaply accepting the way lipos are packed, sold, used, and putting everyone at way more risk than is necessary? I know so, not minding the dollar waste on the other limb.

but no one is bitching and complaining and demanding the lipo industry supply lipos the way I have envisioned, OYE.

My guess some tard in the industry is reading this and will begin working on my proposed system to be the good guy and come to the rescue, LOL, heheheheheheheheheheheh, (shyt happens for money, especially money, here kitty kitty).

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10-27-2014 01:00 AM  3 years agoPost 16
HeimD

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the great southwest

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Your POV is not shared here. I'm not fixing sub standard packs. Modern lipos are not designed to be repaired. Fixing nicads is trivial but fixing lipos is not smart, IMHO.
Exactly. And, remember, that's from the OP who almost burned his house down by violating the most basic rule of lipo charging. I wouldn't even trust a pack he'd used, much less a rebuilt one. Run for the hills!

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10-27-2014 01:02 AM  3 years agoPost 17
HeimD

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the great southwest

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I don't see why everyone is so careless either, don't make sense.
Wait, what??? You're calling the rest of US careless? Ok, there, OP.

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10-27-2014 01:32 AM  3 years agoPost 18
icanfly

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ontario

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if you read earlier my balance connector to the distribution plate was off the charger, charge pumping into 3 juiced packs with one drained pack and that was first in line on the distribution plate

Ya know, if you had a charging distribution panel with singular cells, in my case the amps going to the drained lipo would have been internally adjusted to fewer amps per cell and would have been balanced because there would be no other way to charge them but singularly, aka BALANCED, cool huh.

not careless, I've successfully REBUILT packs and they are sooo easy once you get over the fear of torching everything in sight. It was not a rebuilt pack but a retailed fully intact pack that vented on me.

house burn down? is the lipo industry going to sit on it's arse and wait for a few suits to be sent to them before they alter their evil ways, (l-i-v-e/e-v-i-l).

do you really think everyone in the rc world is going to be baby sitting every lipo charge?

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10-27-2014 02:41 AM  3 years agoPost 19
rpat

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Weirton, W. Va.

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I have yet to hear anyone sue turnigy or any other battery manufacturing co because their house or car has burnt down..and you want to know why.....here's why are you using their approved charger with their pack......well are you.....hell no your not. are you charging at what the manufacturer is recommending...hell no your not.....and one last thing in your case were you smoking a joint when you plugged that lipo in.......hell ___ ____ ___ !!!

trex 700fbl cal30,minititan,, trx600fbl,trex250,logo 500,Velocity N2

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10-27-2014 03:21 AM  3 years agoPost 20
icanfly

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ontario

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no need to insinuate that the op is an ftard ahole, canuk fukking doping pot head crackhead, don't kill the goose, capiche.

back to the plan ONE CELL AT A TIME.

approved charger or not the present system begs to be IMPROVED, my way, and now, the end is near, and so I face the final curt-----------------ain, on multi cell packs ladies and gents. If the manufacturers KNOW the present form of multi cell packs pose a greater risk than individual cells THAN WHAT ARE THEY WAITING FOR?

Sure there's been smoke, a few fires, no one has died yet, that's a big yet, they are banned from airflight in certain quantities, lipos in large amounts are HAZARDOUS GOODS, no shyt ehh?

FOOL PROOF EVEN A 3 YEAR OLD COULD MANAGE, that's how, and how.

Ask yourself, am I not a fool when I bin a perfectly good pack when only one cell has died, I just trashed HOW MUCH? you count the difference MY SYSTEM MAKES. Ain't no lipo repair but one of general attitude, I gotta fix em because schmo manufacturer don't see the light, but they see more MONEY in today"s presentation, I WIN (and I loose by following in). Don't like something, CHANGE IT, I want lipos CHANGED and now. Told you I was away for most of the week, and returned to packs of suspect state of charge with the BALANCE CONNECTOR OFF THE CHARGER. now I'm yelling.

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