What kind of battery for adventuring, is Lithium up to the challenge?

Discussion in 'Parallel Universe' started by JoelWisman, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. Clev

    Clev n00b

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    Bonjour a tous!

    Hi everyone!
    I'm really not a specialist in batteries...:eek1
    I've read several pages of this thread, but it's hard to find a summary.:cry

    In few words, at this moment, what are the best solutions to replace the original battery on a f800gs?

    Thnks for your help!

    Merci!

    Claude
    Montreal qc
  2. tdcarter

    tdcarter Adventurer

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    Machine is a Honda ST1300. Not your typical adventure bike, but enough adventure for me at the moment. Got some long distance trip coming up. Want to be able to have a few nights camping away from it all, but still have electric to run a cpap so I (and camping neighbors) get a good nights sleep.

    Tried 30,000 mfd 25v caps. Not enough of a carrying capacity to keep the V/R on track, as V?R huunted for voltage, caps just adjust and also and went with the flow. Thought of trying to make a constant source by using 11 half size nicd cells, only bring them online when bike engine is actually running.

    Otherwise all is beautiful. Plenty of capacity. Left pair of 45w headlights running off battery for 2 hours, still had plenty of juice to fire engine. Next part of build is heater circuit with remote start for cold weather and then a low voltage cut-off. Save battery from pre-mature death and me from needing a jump start and/or trying to push start a beaST.

    When they don't make what you want, or sell it at a fair price, build your own.
    T
  3. JRWooden

    JRWooden Long timer

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    Joel:
    If you're still out there ... did you hear of any explosions or failed stators ...
    or did you loose touch with these guys when everything else blew up? :cry

    9C is enough to make a big difference in stator life expectancy!
  4. WayneC

    WayneC Long timer

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    TDCater

    The battery needs to remain online / in circuit to provide filtering of spikes from the charging system. Your basic problem is the cut off voltages for the BMS you have built and the stock VR are different & need to be matched. Look at the F800GS stator threads, there is a series pass VR from eastern europe which may be better for you, either way the stock VR is clearly not capable of operating with your setup.

    In terms of power for camping though and protecting the starter battery it would be more normal to run a dual battery system with the second battery providing the camping power & either a manual or automatic switch into the charging system for charging during the day as per Campervans etc
  5. tdcarter

    tdcarter Adventurer

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    Thanks, will look into the regulator. But changing the cut-off would not be a benefit to the battery. Need to generate some artifical load/charge between the two... I think.

    It would be more normal to do that if I was using lead-acid. One deep cycle, one shallow cycle, keep them seperate so that voltage difference won't let one drag down the other. But the beauty of LiFe is that you can have both of those benefits, high CCA, high storage potential and add in high discharge/charge cycle ability. LiFe keeps a very flat discharge till it's almost all gone, and it hurts it very little to cycle it from almost all the way down to back up full. So why not use it that way, plus it's less space then dual's + switching + wiring + etc... Campervans had the space and load capacity to carry dual batteries, not so much on the bike.

    New solution to an old problem, but there is more then one problem to solve it appears.
  6. WayneC

    WayneC Long timer

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    Generating an artificial load is not the answer, matching the VR cutoff to the BMS and having the battery in float is the answer, a series pass VR would potentially give a smoother output

    As for the battery isolation between camping load & starting load the principles remain the same whether you use LifePO or lead acid. The LifePO simply reduces the size & weight & improves he viability of set up as the RTW guys have found
  7. Sydney Andy

    Sydney Andy Adventurer

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    .....thanks mate, been away on holiday and am just getting back to this now. The 16 sounds like the peace of mind i am after....!!
  8. mookymoo

    mookymoo Mookish Mook

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    What impact does A123 going t*ts-up have on our choices?
  9. cyborg

    cyborg Potius Sero Quam Numquam

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    Shorai and EarthX both use Asian manufactured prismatic flatpack cells. The ones using circular cells are likely the ones that will be impacted most.

    I will be testing an EarthX 18AH battery soon in my 990, that has built-in BMS and fits the KTM 990 OEM battery location with no foam shims needed (the "C" body).
  10. battman

    battman Adventurer

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    shorai uses the flat cells, yes, and overstates the capacity and cranking amps by 40%

    EarthX uses A123 cells
    and, they do NOT use a BMS
  11. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    has anyone heard from Joel? really miss his input as he's one of the sharpest tech's on Adv.

    some false information posted above ... Earth-X has an internal BMS. Shorai like most lithium battery mfg uses lead acid equivalent ratings. main problem I've found is mfg tend to size their batteries for summer use, not winter.

    in the middle of doing regenerative discharge tests to measure actual amp hour capacity for Shorai, Earth-X and GPS LiFePO4 batteries.

    here's the link http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=757934&page=19

    for most folks... my recommendations is stick with AGM... unless one is willing to spend the extra $$$ and brain cycle learning cold starting procedures. it's not unusual to save 5-10lbs ...compared to carbon fiber piece, going with LiFePO4 is some of the most cost effective way to drop lbs.

    your winter heated gear uses real amps ... short rides can drain off amps with heated gear without allowing time to charge battery backup. resulting in not enough reserve amp capacity to start bike next morning.
  12. cyborg

    cyborg Potius Sero Quam Numquam

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    True about Shorai. On EarthX where do you get your info?

    read here:
    http://earthxmotorsports.com/our-batteries/

    The Sales Manager of EarthX (_cy_ knows who) told me they were prismatic too, but I can't find that in writing. She also told me the EarthX meets the true stated ampacity and I will be testing my hard to start KTM990 below freezing with their 18AH "C" shell. My 18aH Shorai will not start first time below freezing. EarthX claims theirs will. Testing soon.
  13. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    results of regenerative discharge tests (amp hour) for Shorai says otherwise. following link above to check out results of tests, which are slowly coming together. each test cycle takes 3-4 hours depending on which battery. so quite time consuming...

    are you referring to Joel's discharge tests using an undersized shoria LiFePO4 battery against properly sized lead acid batteries? and no it's not Joel's fault for using undersized Shorai battery, as that's what size was recommended. my recommendation is to use a LiFePO4 battery 75% less original PB amp hour rating.

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ySNbSZTgplA?feature=player_embedded" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="360" width="640"></iframe>

    discharge tests on Earth-X coming up soon... will post results in LiFePO4 testing thread ... link in sig
  14. JRWooden

    JRWooden Long timer

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    Joel is indeed the man, but no longer works at a BMW dealership.
    My guess is his new job keeps him from being as active here on the forum :cry
  15. cyborg

    cyborg Potius Sero Quam Numquam

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    I'm going strictly by what is the largest battery that will fit in my KTM 990, in the Shorai case it's the LXF 18A-BS12, and then will it start my bike first crank at and below freezing like Lead/Acid would. Answer: Gen 1, Nope. Gen 2, Nope. Always needs the "warm it up with current draw" rigamarole to get it going. A hassle and hard on the starter and electrical system with sagging voltage. I was an early adopter of the Shorai and Shorai has treated me well, I have no complaints with them as a company and Dave Radford has been great. The problem is their battery still won't do the job for me and I don't want to have to use an external balancing charger to top it off. That defeats the "drop in replacement" idea.

    EarthX says they are not overrating their batteries and when I recently asked for the largest AmpHour battery they had in the case that fits my bike, in this case the EXT36C (because I am skeptical of the Li batt ratings), they said why spend the money because their batteries are NOT overrated, and for me to try the recommended size EXT18C. They said if I was unhappy in any way they will upsize me with no hassles.

    Interesting note: The Shorai LXF 18A-BS12 weighs 1060gr/2.34lb and the EarthX EXT18C weighs 950gr/2.09lb with BMS inside! How they can get more power with even less weight than the Shorai is a mystery to me.

    Regardless of test benches, the acid test (pardon the pun) will be when the bike gets some good cold-soak all day outside in sub-freezing weather while at work, then trying a start. If the EarthX does it, I'll be a happy rider since I'm an all weather, year round motorcycle commuter. Temps are in the upper 30's now in my garage and the bike jumps to life first crank with the EarthX and does not start right off with the fairly new Shorai (the 3rd Shorai in the bike). I'm waiting for it to get colder to really test the EarthX.
  16. battman

    battman Adventurer

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  17. cyborg

    cyborg Potius Sero Quam Numquam

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    Good info Battman. I only had the EarthX literature to go on and what their own sales people told me, which as you have shown, is wrong/misleading. Wasn't willing to cut mine apart in the name of science. Those A123 cells must be very light. Still, having a built-in balancing charger to get that last little bit out of the cells is nice.
  18. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    time to do a few CCA test duplicating what Joel Wiseman did earlier in video below. 200 amp for 30sec, 10sec and 20sec cycle.

    reason for duplicating values Joel used is 200amp is about what R1200GS draws cold. just as important data produced will dovetail into Joel's excellent work.

    actual amp hour capacity for tested LiFePO4 battery will be part of new data generated.
    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?p=20278858#post20278858

    [​IMG]

    battman ... thanks for the pic's... there's several types of BMS for LiFePO4 batteries ... most common is a intelligent shunt, when selected voltage is reached for that cell. current is shunted to ground to allow rest of cells to reach full voltage. if you have any more angles, would you send them to me or post em.

    Earth-X could be using both prismatic and cylindrical cells, depending on amp hour battery. note there can be substantial differences in actual CCA delivered. either due to different cells and/or cell to cell construction.
    [​IMG]
  19. battman

    battman Adventurer

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  20. _cy_

    _cy_ Long timer

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    voltage drop under load may not be as important indicator as amp drop due to LiFePO4's very flat discharge curve. the instant battery no longer sustains 200amp... tests are stopped to prevent damage to battery. then fully discharge battery is immediately charged above 12.8v, then allowed to cool for balance of charge cycle to full.

    main difference between my LiFePO4 tests and Joel's is the addition of actual amp hour measurements. which require special tools to measure. Joel has nicer Fluke meters than me :D

    discharge tests are well underway for Shorai LFX21, LFX36, Earth-X ETX24, ETX36C. here ... http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=757934&page=19