Cateye SLA batteries

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Peter B, Oct 24, 2003.

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  1. Peter B

    Peter B Guest

    I've just purchased a set of these lights which received good reviews in the press. However, they've
    come in for some criticsism from every day users, the main complaint being battery life, both
    run-time and cycle life, and Cateye themselves state that the battery must not be left on charge for
    >10 hours. One buyer stated that he bought another charger and has no problems.

    After checking Maplins, RS and Farnell they each offer a couple of types of charger with Maplins
    being best VFM when VAT is considered.

    So, my question is which type should I buy from Maplins? A basic constant voltage charger that
    according to the blurb reduces current output when the battery is fully charged or a "3 step
    charger" which according to the blurb initially charges at a higher voltage that is then reduced
    when the battery is 98% charged? According to Maplins catalogue the former is better for standby and
    low cyclic usage and the latter better for high cyclic use with deep discharging, typical bike lamp
    by the sound of it. Some of the chargers are claimed to be able to recover deeply discharged
    batteries. So bearing in mind the basic constant voltage type costs £10 and the more sophisticated
    ones >£22 what should I go for? And can these chargers be left on for >10 hours (I'm assuming for
    standby batteries this would be the norm)?

    TIA, Pete
     
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  2. Andyp

    Andyp Guest

    "Peter B" <[email protected]> wrote

    > I've just purchased a set of these lights which received good reviews in
    the
    > press. However, they've come in for some criticsism from every day users, the
    main
    > complaint being battery life, both run-time and cycle life, and Cateye themselves state that the
    > battery must not be left on charge for >10
    hours.
    > One buyer stated that he bought another charger and has no problems.

    Thanks for that...you've just reminded me to switch my own charger off. I usually set my watch alarm
    to tell me to turn it off these days but mistakenly set it for am instead of pm (idiot). I've
    overcharged my battery (Sigma Sport 6V SLA not Cateye) several times since getting the lights a year
    ago. Run times don't seem to have suffered greatly if at all as a result. It also held charge
    through about 3 months of non use this summer. So all in all I'm quite happy with it.
     
  3. Peter B wrote:
    > I've just purchased a set of these lights which received good reviews in the press. However,
    > they've come in for some criticsism from every day users, the main complaint being battery life,
    > both run-time and cycle life, and Cateye themselves state that the battery must not be left on
    > charge for >10 hours. One buyer stated that he bought another charger and has no problems.
    >
    > After checking Maplins, RS and Farnell they each offer a couple of types of charger with Maplins
    > being best VFM when VAT is considered.
    >
    > So, my question is which type should I buy from Maplins? A basic constant voltage charger that
    > according to the blurb reduces current output when the battery is fully charged or a "3 step
    > charger" which according to the blurb initially charges at a higher voltage that is then reduced
    > when the battery is 98% charged? According to Maplins catalogue the former is better for standby
    > and low cyclic usage and the latter better for high cyclic use with deep discharging, typical bike
    > lamp by the sound of it. Some of the chargers are claimed to be able to recover deeply discharged
    > batteries. So bearing in mind the basic constant voltage type costs £10 and the more sophisticated
    > ones >£22 what should I go for? And can these chargers be left on for >10 hours (I'm assuming for
    > standby batteries this would be the norm)?
    >
    > TIA, Pete

    Just make sure you get a *smart* charger that is built for SLA batteries. A lot of chargers are
    built for NiMh and Li-Ion batteries and they will not work with your setup. What kind of smart
    charger you get for a SLA setup probably doesn't matter as long as it doesn't cook your battery and
    it will give you a trickle charge once it has detected a full battery. If you fry your SLA battery
    out by forgetting the timer or something doesn't really matter so much as it is a cheap battery. It
    will maybe last for 100 cycles instead of 500. Big deal. What you are interested in is that it
    lasts until you get home and can put it in the charger again. I had a constant voltage charger that
    was set at
    6.75 V no more no less. It would not cook my battery and it would not quickcharge them. I had enough
    juice in my Sigma Mirage setup to get to work next morning and back home. I could also leave it in
    the charger all summer if I happened to forget it.

    Recently upgraded to NiMH cells and an expensive charger ( $82 ) since I have started riding a lot
    more offroad and need like three hours of strong light. NiMh cells are a lot more sensitive to
    overcharging than SLA is. I overvolted the Sigma Mirage setup to 7.2V which gives a very strong
    light. My NiMh pack is 8 Ah and will last me maybe three times as long as the original SLA setup.

    --
    Perre

    You have to be smarter than a robot to reply.
     
  4. sammiedog

    sammiedog New Member

    Joined:
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    If I am not too late try mx2.com for batteries and chargers excellent value also do cheap printer ink
     
  5. David Hansen

    David Hansen Guest

    On Fri, 24 Oct 2003 16:42:18 +0000 (UTC) someone who may be "Peter B" <[email protected]>
    wrote this:-

    >So, my question is which type should I buy from Maplins?

    One designed for SLA batteries. That may sound obvious and patronising, but they do behave
    differently to other sorts of battery.

    >According to Maplins catalogue the former is better for standby and low cyclic usage and the latter
    >better for high cyclic use with deep discharging, typical bike lamp by the sound of it.

    Correct, if the running time gets near the maximum. If your typical journey does not get near the
    maximum running time, or you do not use the light(s) all the time then the former may be enough.

    >And can these chargers be left on for >10 hours

    Assuming they trickle charge as the battery is near capacity then it is best to leave the battery
    charging unless it is in use.

    --
    David Hansen, Edinburgh | PGP email preferred-key number F566DA0E I will always explain revoked
    keys, unless the UK government prevents me using the RIP Act 2000.
     
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