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Old 09-09-2016, 08:31 AM   #1
Glenn Nigh
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Charging 1.2 volt battery


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I have two 1.2, 3300 mah batteries in parallel. Do I charge the battery as a 6600 mah battery? Thanks, Glenn
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Old 09-09-2016, 08:38 AM   #2
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

What kind of battery? This is very important!!!!!
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Old 09-09-2016, 09:04 AM   #3
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

The type of battery would determine the charge rate and pattern, but yes, you would set it up as having 6600 MAh capacity.
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Old 09-09-2016, 09:14 AM   #4
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

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Originally Posted by Glenn Nigh View Post
I have two 1.2, 3300 mah batteries in parallel. Do I charge the battery as a 6600 mah battery? Thanks, Glenn
Hi Glen. Are you sure they are in parallel?

1.2V X 2batteries in PARALLEL = 1.2v 6600mah

So you would charge it at 1.2V at 6600mah

On the other hand, it they were in SERIES (one behind the other)

then you would have:
1.2V X 2batteries in SERIES = 2.4v 3300mah

In this case, you would charge at 2.4v at 3300mah.

Double check what you have and how its connected before you continue.

And also like Cliff asks- It would be helpful for us to better help you if you could tell us what type of battery is it and where are you using it?
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Old 09-09-2016, 10:36 PM   #5
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

Thank you Max and others. Max you have verified my thoughts. The battery stuff is still a challenge for this old head...
What I have is two 3300 mah ( sub C nicad ) cells in parallel for my on board glow driver for the twin OS120 The charger I got for one cell is at 500 ma. Thanks Glenn
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Old 09-10-2016, 06:43 AM   #6
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

So if you do the math that 500 MAh wold take 13 1/2 hours to completely top up that pack. However, the initial charge may seem the longest as you have less idea of total charge. Doubtful later charges would take so long as you likely will not be burning through so much between charges.

NiCad generally have a higher output capability than NiMH, but suffer from what we called "Memory" and internal shorting over repeated cycling.

These two differences may not be critical to your application. It may be just for your own information.

Memory was something the user imposed on the cells. The shortest explanation is an example: Say that you repeated discharging to only 80% and then rewound the battery to full again. Over time the cells would take on the characteristic of "Thinking" that that 80% was the point they were discharged.

NiCads and NiMH rechargeable cells have a relatively flat voltage line as they discharge, the voltage remaining consistent and not giving you much indication of how close they may be to empty. Once close to completely empty, (or where memory tells them it is) that line reaches what is called a "Knee Point" where the output quickly falls off the cliff.

These two characteristics combined mean you expect to be able to use the complete 3300MAh capacity, but all of a sudden when you get to that 80% the battery output quickly drops.

To prevent this you had to slowly discharge the batteries and recharge them to full in a preset rate. Chargers usually had that capability and if done correctly and regularly could deprogram that memory.

Another NiCad issue was that internally within the cell repeated cycling had "Fingers" grow within the electrolyte, sort of like Stalagmites and Stalactites in a cave. Once they touched the cell was shorted and useless. We used to try a trick of momentarily hitting the ends with 12V or more to burn the fingers away, but that was a short term fix.

NiMH did not display these problems, but their charge characteristics were different and if not done correctly could damage the cells. Also, it seems they suffer a self-discharge where I was not comfortable unless I rewound them the night before a flight event. Better cells such as Eneloop were less prone. All would show this eventually.

NOTE: As my craft grew larger and more sophisticated the low current output of NiMH started to pale, regardless of the larger capacity packs I ran. The more modern LiFE cells gave me all the output I needed, were sometimes lighter than NiMH and even less expensive. At first I was running the flight system through 20A regulators to prevent high voltage problems with the servos. Found this was not really needed so for at least the last half dozen builds have been sourcing them directly.

Is the glow driver a home fabbed unit or production? I have a McDaniel dual output and seem to remember it took 4.8-6V sourcing. Would have to double check.
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Old 09-10-2016, 10:00 AM   #7
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

One way of ensuring the NICAD does not pick up that memory is to fully charge it up as soon as you can after each use. A fully charged NICAD tops out at 1.51V. Only fully cycle the battery if it picks up that memory. The NICAD battery is only good for 1000 full cycles or many more part cycles.
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Old 09-10-2016, 11:02 PM   #8
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

Thank you Gary and Cliff, most informative. The driver I have is the MPI MX-9900 Supper Glow on board glow driver. It is designed for 4.8 to 5.9 systems. I have used two of them and they have worked well for me. The only worry I have is charging the cells with the charger that came with the driver correctly so I don't ruin them early. I have a charger that can set up now that I know what to set it at. Thank you to all who replied, Glenn
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Old 09-11-2016, 06:42 AM   #9
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

Interesting system. Very similar to the McDaniels.

The 4.8 to 5.9V spec is for the radio system side of things; what the rest of the flight system works with to drive the servos and other components. Further down is the battery specifications for a single and dual plug rig. Basically the only difference is a larger capacity battery to supply two glow plugs. There may be a stronger switch in the case to handle the higher load.

That will be isolated from the glow driver source except for the black NEGATIVE which is required to provide a stable ground reference and a place to dump interference.


NiCads should be fine to charge if your system has an automatic current drop to trickle. I always hated wall warts since they were exceedingly simple and would continue to pump whatever they could into the packs. This is of particular concern when working with NiMH since as I mentioned earlier their schedule is different once near peak. The cell voltage will hit a peak then actually start to fall off a bit. If set for NiCads the charger will increase to compensate and the cells will begin to heat up. Some chargers such as my Elite have temp sensors you can place with the pack to look for this and tailor the output to compensate. This also helps to protect the pack and yourself from damage or worse.

Along with the Elite I have one remaining original Accu-Cycle Pro as shown in the pic. Actually quite a good unit and will work with 1, 4 and 5 cell Rx packs with selectable peak charge rates and cycle capability. If you ever get to swap meets keep your eyes open for one of these. You should be able to grab it for a song.
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Old 09-11-2016, 12:47 PM   #10
Glenn Nigh
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Re: Charging 1.2 volt battery

I have a Triton2 charger. Is that a good enough charger for my needs? I can set it at 1 amp 6600mAh NiCd /MH Am I correct? Thanks for the help. Glenn
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