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Manx Mariner

L48v 20.3ah battery charging problem.

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I posted this on Facebook modders but thought I would post here to see if someone has an answer. 

Has any had this problem with their L48v 20.3ah battery from Lindsey Nguyen? I just got the battery a few days ago and have charged it a few times with no problems. Yesterday I went to charge the battery and the charger (that came with the battery) cycles on and off continually and won’t charge the battery. I have contacted ElectroBikeWorld.com by email and they are attempting to find the reason from the factory. I was hoping that someone here might have an answer or unfortunately a similar problem. Really bummed as my friends and I had a big bike ride planned for this weekend.

 

Thanks for any help/ideas. 

Edited by Manx Mariner
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I read the FB thread just now and its good to see they are getting you a charger while they try and figure out the problem.  I agree it could be the BMS but based on your video I would think it more likely to be the charger.

This is why I don't like to use these fan-driven Chinese chargers.  I've had three of them fail on me (none came from Lindsey).  I prefer making my own via LED power supplies as they are more efficient, weatherproof and more importantly highly reliable in the form of MTBF's in the tens of thousands of hours.

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Yes, I agree. Lindsey stepped up to the plate and is getting me a used one in exchange so we can see if it is the charger or the battery. 

Since I am not as educated in electronics as you and probably wouldn’t feel comfortable with building my own charger, what would you recommend? Would the LunaCycle charger be a good one? I like that you can set percentage of full charge. 

Thanks,

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Sadly the failures I experienced were all Luna chargers.  To their credit they offered great tech support and replaced the first two promptly, but I just chucked the third.  Its not their fault really its the platform... and everyone is pretty much selling the same product.

To be fair, I have chargers secreted in multiple locations, I ride daily and charge at least twice per day so I have a lot more opportunity to accumulate chargers and experience success or failure.

The really top dog that breaks the mold here is the Grin Satiator.  It is a highly efficient charger that does not need a fan and is weather resistant.  It has a graphic display and the ability to store multiple profiles.   It also has a Windows app that lets you easily configure a profile for the charger and store same.

thats where the good news ends.  it costs roughly $300.  I have one and they are great.  But since I have multiple charging stations I am just not going to buy more at $300 a pop... I tried traveling with it - and I do travel with it - but taking it out of its traveling case and setting it up twice a day was also a PITA.   If you don't ride as much, its not going to be as much of a burden.  Me I want to be able to just park, set my timer and immediately plug in.

So the way I went was to a charger (Meanwell street lighting LED power supply) that has the same underlying solid construction (potted, waterproof, MTBF of 192,000 - 303,000 hours depending on which you pick), but costs roughly $40.  Adding an inline watt meter to it, power cord and battery plug takes the cost up to around $80.  From there I can dial in the amperage and voltage I want for the charger and job done.  I save my Satiator for my monthly 100% balance charges and charge at work and home at about 1 amp and 55.4v (I have 52v batteries).

As you say its not for everyone... but its also not that difficult to do.  I'm looking into finding the time to write up a how-to.

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Update: Lindsey sent me a used/older charger to see if my problem of the old charger cycling on and off and not charging was the culprit. And, it was. The replacement is charging the battery just fine. Thanks Lindsey for your help. I sent the original charger back.

Edited by Manx Mariner

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On 5/19/2018 at 6:24 AM, SloHand said:

Hey Matt, I'd love to see that how-to. Mean Well supplies are readily available here from a local supplier.

I'm putting something together using a new charger I am making up for a new location I am setting up.  It should pop up in a week or two.

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22 hours ago, MattRobertson said:

I'm putting something together using a new charger I am making up for a new location I am setting up.  It should pop up in a week or two.

Matt,

What Mean Well model are you using? I have a Watts Up meter. Can the Mean Well do a percentage charge such as 80%, 90%, 100%?

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Two models to choose from unless you want to get weird and pick one with very low amperage or very high amperage

With a 48v battery I would buy this one.  Now while they are still available at $40 with free shipping.

http://r.ebay.com/VHupCi

This assumes you are in the USA of course.  You could also use a CLG-150-48A but its 150-watt rating means it has to be kept at lower amps.  However if you want to charge a 36v battery thats the one you have to have.

And yes they can do 80, 90 or 100%... its up to you to dial it manually.  These chargers are most conveniently used at a single preset setting (unless you can find a dial for them and then put hashmarks for set percentages).  One of the risks you take going this route is dialing the wrong voltage.  You can overcharge with one of these.  So there's a level of responsibility you have to accept.  But to me its worth it. 

I have one of these HLGs dialed to 58.5v and 3.1a.  Basically a 185w max-unit-capacity setting.  Its the one I travel with on one of my bikes.  I set it to 58.5 to ensure if I screw something up its not going to exceed 58.8v.

Bear in mind meters like a Watts Up are notorious for being a little off in one direction or the other.  Don't trust it until you have established how far off it is and can compensate for it.   Small differences for other devices are magnified in a charging application where small changes matter a lot.

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Just make sure you buy EXACTLY! the right model.  I've fallen foul of this.  I'd stand by what Matt puts together (for us all) as its a very cheap/reliable and easy piece of kit to pull together, but you need to make sure you get the right model.  The power supplies are not quite so common here, so like a prat, I opted to get mine from Taiwan.  Import duty and retrospective read of the manual later, and I'm all set up and ready to go, but try not to make the same mistake I did.  (blushes)

 

Edited by Marco

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