logo
Thread Tools
Old 12-22-2016, 10:01 AM
BHFG is offline
Find More Posts by BHFG
Registered User
United States, GA, Dacula
Joined Oct 2015
255 Posts
Question
Multi-Battery AC/DC Charger Questions and Recommendations

I have read the other threads about charger recommendations, but they leave me with some other questions in looking for a new charger.

My main question is on capacity. Is 6S capability enough, or should I plan for more? I am new to giant scale and right now have one 73" plane that uses 6S, but I foresee wanting to go to bigger airframes over time. I have seen some $$$ chargers that go up to 14S, but is that really overkill or pretty realistic?

Beyond that I am looking for recommendations for a new charger/balancer that meets this criteria:
- Multi battery capability (at least 2 at a time, but up to 4)
- At least 6S capacity (maybe more depending on recommendations here)
- AC/DC Input (12v)
- Built in Charge/Balance/Discharge/Store routines
- Programmable charge rates
- Support for EC3, Deans' or other battery connectors (looks like most use banana plugs anyway)
- Support for Lipo/Life/NimH and NiCad with Lead Acid support a plus
- Ability to pack it up and take it to the field with me

My budget is low as possible, of course, but would like to stay under $350 if possible.

Any recommendations?
BHFG is offline Find More Posts by BHFG
Last edited by BHFG; 12-22-2016 at 11:04 AM.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Old 12-22-2016, 10:14 AM
jharkin is offline
Find More Posts by jharkin
Registered User
jharkin's Avatar
United States, MA, Holliston
Joined Jul 2007
659 Posts
Are you really going to get big electrics? or fly your big planes on gas and keep electric for the small/mid stuff?

That is the first decision you need to make.


In larger electrics 6S and 12S are the most common combinations. 12S packs are made of 2 6S packs wired in series so you can charge them on a 6S capable charger by hooking them up parallel or just charging one at a time. 14S and larger configs are generally reserved for the REALLY big planes or exotic setups like the speed helicopters.

Dont bother with an AC/DC charger. You wont find any good ones much over 100 watts. Get a good DC charger and then source a power supply for running it on AC when you need to. A lot of us get surplus computer server power supplies from ebay and modify them for RC use. You can get a 50amp supply for < $50 that way. Get two and set them up to run in series (you have to float the ground on one supply) and you can have 50amps @ 24v for driving the really high end chargers like the PL8 and iCharger 4010 to their max over over 1kW.

A FMA powerlab6/Powerlab8, or an iCharger 306/308/3010 with a balance board will charge pretty much anything imaginable for most average hobbyists. If you are going to be charging big packs at the field you need to also think of a power source - anything over a couple 3S batteries will kill your car battery so a big deep cycle or a generator is in order.

See why we like gas?
jharkin is offline Find More Posts by jharkin
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-22-2016, 11:05 AM
BHFG is offline
Find More Posts by BHFG
Registered User
United States, GA, Dacula
Joined Oct 2015
255 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by jharkin View Post
Are you really going to get big electrics? or fly your big planes on gas and keep electric for the small/mid stuff?
Howdy! Hope all is well with you and the family as well as the house repairs. I owe you and email with an update on my situation. Let's just say the last 2 months of surgical recovery ain't been fun.

Primarily I will be flying gassers, but would like to have one or two electrics as well. Lots of guys at our field are flying as much as 120" and 140" airframes on electric. So I want to be covered with a charger, just in case.

I have a Honda AC generator that supplies 12v DC to take with me, so if I need 24v, I need something rigged up for that. But, unless I read your post wrong, sounds like having at least 6S will cover me for awhile. Am I right?
BHFG is offline Find More Posts by BHFG
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-22-2016, 12:14 PM
Mike Mayberry is offline
Find More Posts by Mike Mayberry
Registered User
Poway, CA
Joined Mar 2006
798 Posts
The new Hitec D7 would definitely fit the bill... AC/DC 2 port charger with 200W/20A per port up to 7S. $249.99

More info here: http://hitecrcd.com/products/charger...tation/product

Mike.
Mike Mayberry is offline Find More Posts by Mike Mayberry
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-22-2016, 12:20 PM
jharkin is offline
Find More Posts by jharkin
Registered User
jharkin's Avatar
United States, MA, Holliston
Joined Jul 2007
659 Posts
Hi Rick...

No worries, been busy here too.


At my field about the biggest electrics I see are the 60-70 inch class flying on 6S 5000 batteries. There are some electric heli guys that fly 12S.

You can fly 12S just fine with a charger like the Powerlab6 or 306B. You get a parallel board and charge the packs as a pair of 6S in parallel.

The only downside is that when you get into that big stuff its gets expensive fast - those 12S packs are not cheap, and at <10 min a flight you either have a bunch, or need a 1000w+ charger and the genny so you can quick charge them for back to back flights. Hauling the genny or a couple big deep cells is a lot of weight on the 'ol back.


I personally have a PL6 and a 50Ah AGM deep cycle. Its more than enough to fly 3S stuff all day when I bring my son with me. If I ever got a mid size electric (say a 60" on 6S-3800) it would be ok for an afternoon of flights if I brought 2-3 packs pre charged at home . That's about as large as I'm willing to deal with E.... I like traveling light.

If I *really* wanted to, the PL6 can easily charge a pair of 6S-5000s @4C in parallel on the right power supply. With 2 sets of pack you could fly a very large aircraft nonstop on that.
jharkin is offline Find More Posts by jharkin
Last edited by jharkin; 12-22-2016 at 07:15 PM.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message


Quick Reply
Message:


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools