15 watt halogen - Battery?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Ram, Mar 5, 2003.

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  1. Ram

    Ram Guest

    I have an old (ca. 1997-98) Nite Rider headlight that has given me many years of good use.
    Unfortunately, due to a freak accident, I destroyed the battery to run it with. A new battery from
    Nite Rider is priced at a whopping $160, which I don't really have. Is there a DIY way to build a
    battery pack to run this bulb? I still have the original jack that fits into the light, can I hook
    it up to some NiMH batteries from radio shack and get it to run? What kind of voltage and amp-hours
    should I be shooting for? I believe that I can find a way to construct a battery pack that straps
    onto the frame, and leaves the cells removable for recharging. Thanks in advance for your advice on
    this matter.
     
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  2. Check out the battery, if it is a Sealed Lead Acid type, you can buy a new one at Jaycar
    electronics. Mine cost about $20 for a Cateye Daylites battery. Just take along your old battery and
    buy another one with the same rating.

    Dave Os "ram" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I have an old (ca. 1997-98) Nite Rider headlight that has given me many years of good use.
    > Unfortunately, due to a freak accident, I destroyed the battery to run it with. A new battery from
    > Nite Rider is priced at a whopping $160, which I don't really have. Is there a DIY way to build a
    > battery pack to run this bulb? I still have the original jack that fits into the light, can I hook
    > it up to some NiMH batteries from radio shack and get it to run? What kind of voltage and
    > amp-hours should I be shooting for? I believe that I can find a way to construct a battery pack
    > that straps onto the frame, and leaves the cells removable for recharging. Thanks in advance for
    > your advice on this matter.
     
  3. David Kunz

    David Kunz Guest

    David Oslington wrote:
    > Check out the battery, if it is a Sealed Lead Acid type, you can buy a new one at Jaycar
    > electronics. Mine cost about $20 for a Cateye Daylites battery. Just take along your old battery
    > and buy another one with the same rating.
    >
    > Dave Os "ram" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    >
    >>I have an old (ca. 1997-98) Nite Rider headlight that has given me many years of good use.
    >>Unfortunately, due to a freak accident, I destroyed the battery to run it with. A new battery from
    >>Nite Rider is priced at a whopping $160, which I don't really have. Is there a DIY way to build a
    >>battery pack to run this bulb? I still have the original jack that fits into the light, can I hook
    >>it up to some NiMH batteries from radio shack and get it to run? What kind of voltage and
    >>amp-hours should I be shooting for? I believe that I can find a way to construct a battery pack
    >>that straps onto the frame, and leaves the cells removable for recharging. Thanks in advance for
    >>your advice on this matter.
    >

    Take apart the old one. If it's a sealed gel-cell (lead-acid), do as above and get one with the same
    voltage (probably 12v) and amp-hour rating so it will work with the existing charger. Check the
    yellow pages for a battery store. The ones that supply batteries for forklifts, etc. will usually
    also sell gel-cells for emergency lighting -- one of these should work fine.

    If it's individual cells, try to determine if they're NiMH or NiCd (it'll usually say on the cells).
    Count the cells. Get the same number of cells. Usually, the amp-hour rating is on each battery also.
    Get about the same and do as above :). There're lots of good online sources for AA sized NiMH and
    NiCd online.

    If you don't have the old battery, then check the voltage rating of a replacement light. For NiHM
    or NiCd, divide this by 1.2 and round-up (12v would be 10 cells in series). Sometimes, they
    overvoltage the light for more brightness at the expense of the bulb not lasting as long -- I can't
    help here except to suggest trial-and-error -- if the new setup's not as bright as the old one, try
    adding a cell.

    If you want to go for longer burn time, then get batteries with a larger amp-hour rating, but if you
    go up by more than about 10-15%, you'll probably need to get a charger. You'll also want to charge
    them for that much longer. I.e., was 1000 ma-hr, replaced with 1100 ma-hr -- charge 10% longer (7.7
    hours instead of 7 -- I'd just go with 8).

    Also, you can switch from one battery type to another if you match the voltage and get a new
    charger. NiMH has about the best anp-hours (run time) vs. weight of the batteries that are readily
    available.

    David
     
  4. Peter Cole

    Peter Cole Guest

    "ram" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I have an old (ca. 1997-98) Nite Rider headlight that has given me many years of good use.
    > Unfortunately, due to a freak accident, I destroyed the battery to run it with. A new battery from
    > Nite Rider is priced at a whopping $160, which I don't really have. Is there a DIY way to build a
    > battery pack to run this bulb? I still have the original jack that fits into the light, can I hook
    > it up to some NiMH batteries from radio shack and get it to run? What kind of voltage and
    > amp-hours should I be shooting for? I believe that I can find a way to construct a battery pack
    > that straps onto the frame, and leaves the cells removable for recharging. Thanks in advance for
    > your advice on this matter.

    Nearly all bike lights are either 12 or 6 volt. Any sort of battery will work, a 12 volt battery on
    a 15 watt light will draw about 1.25 amperes, so to get a 2 hr run time you'll need 2.5 a/hr (or 30
    w/hr). Do a google search on newsgroups and you'll find lots of stuff, as these lights are very
    popular and there's lots of DIY stuff done. I believe I've heard of battery sellers that will even
    make up a new water bottle set of welded NiCads (NicadLady.com ??).
     
  5. Matt O'Toole

    Matt O'Toole Guest

    Peter Cole wrote:

    > "ram" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    >> I have an old (ca. 1997-98) Nite Rider headlight that has given me many years of good use.
    >> Unfortunately, due to a freak accident, I destroyed the battery to run it with. A new battery
    >> from Nite Rider is priced at a whopping $160, which I don't really have. Is there a DIY way to
    >> build a battery pack to run this bulb? I still have the original jack that fits into the light,
    >> can I hook it up to some NiMH batteries from radio shack and get it to run? What kind of voltage
    >> and amp-hours should I be shooting for? I believe that I can find a way to construct a battery
    >> pack that straps onto the frame, and leaves the cells removable for recharging. Thanks in advance
    >> for your advice on this matter.
    >
    > Nearly all bike lights are either 12 or 6 volt. Any sort of battery will work, a 12 volt battery
    > on a 15 watt light will draw about 1.25 amperes, so to get a 2 hr run time you'll need 2.5 a/hr
    > (or 30 w/hr). Do a google search on newsgroups and you'll find lots of stuff, as these lights are
    > very popular and there's lots of DIY stuff done.

    The Bikecurrent archives at topica.com are probably the best online resource. Use the search engine
    judiciously -- there's a lot more there than you need to know. People on the list are very helpful,
    but it isn't Usenet, so a higher level of netiquette is expected. Read everything else you can find
    first, *then* ask *intelligent* queations.

    > I believe I've heard of battery sellers that will even make up a new water bottle set of welded
    > NiCads (NicadLady.com ??).

    The Nicad Lady is an excellent source, for cells or cutom made packs. A friend of mine did indeed
    get some packs made up there for a movie camera.

    Definately get cells with solder tabs. Otherwise you'll have a heck of a time trying to solder them.
    Pros use metal straps for wiring, spot welded on.

    For cheap stuff on sale, check out BYD Battery (bydusa.com?). Don't get your cells from Radio
    Shack. They're cheap, low quality generics from China, marked up incredibly. Others are a lot
    better, and cheaper.

    The easiest way to mount batteries on a frame is probably with a water bottle and cage.
    Soldering some cells together and stuffing them into a water bottle is easy enough. Use your
    imagination to make it work. The hot tip for holding the batteries in place is weatherstripping
    foam in a spray can.

    Don't try to use a lead-acid battery with this light, as others have suggested. Lead-acids really
    don't put out enough current for a 15W light. 10W is the practical maximum. They also give you less
    run time, unless you get a huge, heavy one, and your light will dim as the battery runs down. Plus,
    they should have a different kind of charger. Nicad or NiMH will deliver more current to begin with,
    and maintain their output throughout discharge. You can also use the charger you already have.

    Have fun!

    Matt O.
     
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