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18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

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  • 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

    So besides the weight savings, am I going to get more run time from the 18 volt LI-ION batteries at 1.5 ah or the Ni-Cad packs at 2.5 ah? I have several of each and I'm debating which ones to keep.

  • #2
    Re: 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

    Try 'em, and find out. I'm betting on the NiCds by a big margin.

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    • #3
      Re: 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

      I guess I could fully charge both and run them in my jig saw with the trigger lock on, see how long each lasts.

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      • #4
        Re: 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

        The circular saw is probably the power hog. If you have one and some scrap 2x boards, see how many cuts they make before they start to lose power. Don't run them until they pack-up (wouldn't want to take them too far), just until there is a noticeable power drop. If it doesn't take too long try with 2 of each type to get a more representative test.

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        • #5
          Re: 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

          Originally posted by buildenterprises View Post
          So besides the weight savings, am I going to get more run time from the 18 volt LI-ION batteries at 1.5 ah or the Ni-Cad packs at 2.5 ah? I have several of each and I'm debating which ones to keep.
          No one has really directly answered your question here, so I'll give it a shot.

          You will get a longer run time with the battery with a bigger Ah rating, all things being equal, with them both being 18V. Ah stands for "amp hours", and that number rating means that if you put the 18V NiCad battery that you mention on a tool, tape down the trigger, and the tool puts say a 1 amp draw on the battery consistently, then the battery will in theory and practicality last for 2.5 hours. If you do the same thing with the lithium ion battery that you mention (18 v, 1 amp draw, etc.), then that battery will last for 1.5 hours. That's what the number means. So, you have to weigh that shorter run time against the benefits of lithium ion. Depending on how many batteries you have, I'd keep the lithium, but hang onto 1 or 2 of the NiCads, just as a backup if you will.

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          • #6
            Re: 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

            Correct in theory, but not exactly true. What if the question was: Which will last longer: a 2.0 AH NiCd or a 2.0 AH Li-ion? While both will in theory do the same amount of work before they are completely exhausted, I think most people would say the Lithium battery would last longer in use because of it's flatter discharge curve. If the Lithium in this scenario better, at which point would a NiCd battery be better in a usage situation? Would the 1.5 Li battery last longer than the 1.9 NiCd in a real use situation? For the original question, I have no doubt the NiCd would last longer with a low load applied to the batteries, but if you apply a high current draw, I'm not sure how long the NiCd will be able to draw on it's reserves. I suspect the 2.5 NiCd will last longer.

            And what are the benefits of Lithium you refer to? Lighter weight - OK. They are supposed to keep their charge longer when not in use, but as has been noted by several people in this forum, that doesn't appear to always be the case. What else is there? Life - I hope you have LSA on them, because the Li batteries are probably going to need replacing sooner than the NiCds.

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            • #7
              Re: 18 Volt 2.5 AH Ni-Cad vs 1.5 AH LI-ION?

              Originally posted by Calder View Post
              The circular saw is probably the power hog. If you have one and some scrap 2x boards, see how many cuts they make before they start to lose power. Don't run them until they pack-up (wouldn't want to take them too far), just until there is a noticeable power drop. If it doesn't take too long try with 2 of each type to get a more representative test.
              I don't think this test would work as well since the Li-Ion battery should give full power until it runs out where as the NiCad will slowly loose power with each cut.

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