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  • Battery Charger Info

    Since this applies to power tools to a degree I thought I'd ask here. I have a Hitachi battery charger that claims to charge any battery type from 7.2-18v. I used to be heavily involved in radio control electrics and still have a nice RC10B2 electric buggy. Still have some decent nicad packs (up to 2400mah), but my charger finally bit the dust 4-5 yrs. ago. Was wondering if anybody uses their power tool charger for purposes such as this? As a peak charger is a peak charger... may not be able to setp amp rate, etc. but I'd like to use my Hitachi charger for those old packs. I have established + and - output on the charger... Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: Battery Charger Info

    Check the I.D. tag on the charger and see if it tells the charge rate of the charger. As long as it doesn't charge above 2.5-3 amps max it may be safe to try as long as you have a fairly safe charge lead "rigged" up. However, I wouldn't really recommend it when you can pick up r.c. specific chargers that'll still charge Nicad packs starting around 20 bucks. Check out towerhobbies.com, amainhobbies.com, hobbypartz.com, and hobbyking.com if interested.
    You only live once, so play with your tool often.

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    • #3
      Re: Battery Charger Info

      Thanks for the reply. Back in the day I was charging those packs as high as 5 amps with no problem, so the packs themselves can handle it.

      I have looked at those places for a decent charger, but was gonna try to work with what I already have. If I could fix the Tekin charger I have that'd be great as well, but parts availability may be a problem.

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      • #4
        Re: Battery Charger Info

        Go Lipo. Those packs are super light, and have 4 times the power. Good luck not setting the house on fire, there is a learning curve and new rules to follow to avoid a fire. If that isn't a route you want to take, i would at least upgrade to NIMH battery packs, they are 2600MAH to 5000MAH, a far cry better than anything NICD. A Lipo battery pack and a brushless motor would be insane (and kill your wallet too. )
        We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

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        • #5
          Re: Battery Charger Info

          Yeah I have followed battery pack technology over the years as well as the move toward brushless motors and speed controls. It's expensive, but seems to be less overall maintenance when compared to older systems. Having said that, I still have some really nice hand wound low turn motors and a few high end brushed speed controls that I plan to use. With a decent matched pack I can still get my 1/10 buggy in the 40+mph range. That's plenty to have fun with and not too destructive.

          I have been watching R/C videos on YT with some really insane speed runs. More power to those that just want straight line speed.

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          • #6
            Re: Battery Charger Info

            NICD and NIMH packs that are a few years old don't have the punch they once did. I had to throw away about 7 pairs of 7.2v sport packs, and have dead cells on some matched 3800 Orion team packs that were used one season and stored. What's your secret to keeping packs alive after such a long time?
            We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

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            • #7
              Re: Battery Charger Info

              Well hopefully those packs are still in decent shape. I've checked them all and the 2 best matched packs still have decent voltage. None of the cells are dead or have reversed voltage, which I was concerned about. I paid upwards of $80 for 6 cells in some of those packs... Won't really know their condition till I charge them to be honest.

              I kept them all in great shape by pulse charging (some say it helps and some don't) at 4-5 amps (never higher), running the pack down in the buggy, but not too low on voltage. Then finishing with a discharge conditioner and storing at room teperature.

              I really think sticking to that type of routine kept the resistance in the cells low and in great shape for many years. Seems some like to over charge/discharge and it slowly takes a toll.

              FWIW my charger is the old school Tekin BC112c. That thing worked great for many years until something in it popped 4-5 yrs. ago. I opened it up and replaced a blown diode, but there must be an underlying cause as that didn't fix the problem. Tekin said it's really too old to fix due to parts availability. If I can't get it working I will probably buy a new one capable of charging nicads and NiMH. Don't really care for the lithium craze.
              Last edited by shadow745; 04-06-2012, 02:56 PM.

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