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Old 08-17-2007, 07:50 AM   #1
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Default Question about Team Orion Li-po and MRC chargers

We all know about what happened (or should know) about the debacle with MRC chargers, specifically the 969. Lipo capable, read packs wrong, damage damage damage yada yada. Well, I have been using the MRC 977 with Maxamos lipo for over a year with ZERO problems. Now, here is where things get weird. Thumbing through Orions website, they have an asteric stating *Not to be used with MRC brand chargers.*. Can anyone say why? The 977 and the super duper 989, have worked flawlessly in my circles with packs from Maxamps to great planes/eflite. Anyone have any idea why Team Orion singled out MRC brand of chargers?????
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Old 08-17-2007, 08:30 AM   #2
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They want you to buy one of theirs?
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Old 08-17-2007, 08:38 AM   #3
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I thought that too, but with so many others on the market, for them to mention one specific brand by name, one that has a very good reputation in r/c and other hobby circles (I use their DCC for my trains), it strikes me as odd that they would do that.
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Old 08-17-2007, 08:56 AM   #4
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Hard to say, I have never personally used one of those chargers and they may be good but always seemed to be associated at my track as low end. This is in no way saying they are crap, just a perception of the product where I race. Hopefully someone with knowledge will come on with an answer for you.
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Old 08-17-2007, 09:16 AM   #5
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The 977 is a good charger at a very good price. The 989 is a superb charger. I think people are caught up with the bells and whistles when it comes to color screens and price tags. Essentially, the 977 doesnt have the fine tweaking ability that some of the other chargers do; but when it comes to lipo, alot of those functions truly arent necessary IMO. Keep the input coming. People, dont be afraid to jump in.
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Old 08-17-2007, 09:24 AM   #6
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Maybe at the time they posted that, they had trouble with one of the lesser model chargers. Since then, everyone and their brother has upped the ante and released great chargers. I doubt it's a hostile attempt for world domination.
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Old 08-17-2007, 09:25 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBlack
We had zero failures in 6 months of testing using other chargers then after the first batch was released we had 3 failures within a week, one customer had 2 of them both customers were using a MRC 977 we then immediately purchased one and had we not been closely montoring the charge we would have destroyed several batteries as the charger seem to have a mind of it's own which would have lead to several battery failures. This is why we recommend against it.
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Originally Posted by MrBlack
MRC was supposed to send us a charger to test once this happens and it tests out to work properly then we would recommend it, however until this occurs we cannot recommend using it.
Obviously they felt it was serious enough to include a note with every pack they send out. There's plenty of other chargers they do recommend there as well. Ice, Triton2, Multiplex LN-5014, etc. There own Advantage and Advanced chargers too of course.
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Old 08-17-2007, 09:29 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bxpitbull View Post
The 977 is a good charger at a very good price. The 989 is a superb charger. I think people are caught up with the bells and whistles when it comes to color screens and price tags. Essentially, the 977 doesnt have the fine tweaking ability that some of the other chargers do; but when it comes to lipo, alot of those functions truly arent necessary IMO. Keep the input coming. People, dont be afraid to jump in.
I agree with your comment about the bells and whistles description. I am sure that is why they are not very popular at my track. I have to admit I got caught up in the same deal. But that came from the people around me I raced with.

The comment from the above poster does not sound good, but you say yours has been working well so how much faith can you put into it. Could it also be that there are different versions of that charger that some had issues and others did not?
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Old 08-17-2007, 09:40 AM   #9
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Yeti, the 969, which came right before the 977, was supposed to be able to charge lipo and lets just say, there were some nasty failures. The 977, I set the amount of cells, mah, amps and the charger automatically recognizes the lipo pack and sets an automatic cut-off at 8.28 volts (2s2p).

Kuzo, I am almost positive that problem was with the 969 with the "updated" chip to make it a 977. This still crashed and burned, no pun intended. MRC got rid of the chip idea and remanufactured the whole charger set-up. Been working like a charm.

Makes sense they may have had some problems with the early batch of "re-chipped 969/977". I know I have fallen asleep ()while charging with mine, and it always cuts off at 8.28 volts AND, locks the voltage in, preventing the pack from discharging/trickling more than it would if it was sitting alone, unplugged.

Guess this is intriguing me because I am setting up my Pro 3 and my Maxamps 6000 pack doesnt fit. I was looking at Team Orions 3200 and the disclaimer threw me for a loop. Unless someone can suggest some sub c's that give excellent run time, I am at a nasty cross road.
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Old 08-17-2007, 09:43 AM   #10
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I definitely agree about not needing the bells and whistles part to a point. I do however like some sort of feedback of charge status which is why I like the Ice and the Orion Advanced I use. I tried to cheap out originally and got the Integy 16x but something about that charger gave me the willies every time I used it. On top of that it was very easy to knock the charge rate knob and cell selector switch so I stopped using it. (sidenote: I'm selling a Integy 16x in the for sale section - after that glowing review I'm sure you'll want it )
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Old 08-17-2007, 10:30 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bxpitbull View Post
Kuzo, I am almost positive that problem was with the 969 with the "updated" chip to make it a 977. This still crashed and burned, no pun intended. MRC got rid of the chip idea and remanufactured the whole charger set-up. Been working like a charm.

Makes sense they may have had some problems with the early batch of "re-chipped 969/977". I know I have fallen asleep ()while charging with mine, and it always cuts off at 8.28 volts AND, locks the voltage in, preventing the pack from discharging/trickling more than it would if it was sitting alone, unplugged.
That is more or less what I was referring to since you said yours was fine and they others had issues. That is why I brought up the different versions of the same charger. Kind of like how the GFX has different software versions. I would say if you had no issues as of yet with yours that you should have nothing to worry about. But I understand your concern.
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Old 08-17-2007, 10:49 AM   #12
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I own an MRC 977 charger as well and after seeing that notation at the Web site a few days ago, I called Team Orion Avionics to find why they are not recommending MRC's chargers. Suggest you do the same, so you can hear it from them directly.
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Old 08-17-2007, 11:02 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by rmdhawaii View Post
I own an MRC 977 charger as well and after seeing that notation at the Web site a few days ago, I called Team Orion Avionics to find why they are not recommending MRC's chargers. Suggest you do the same, so you can hear it from them directly.
The call was in order but as always, its best to check the boards first. You know as well as I do, they are going to speak highly of their product first and if there was a problem with another manufacturer's product, chances are great, they wont speak highly of it afterwards. To avoid the rig-a-ra-mo, I started a thread and as always, have received excellent feedback. Thanks fellas.
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Old 08-17-2007, 11:26 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmdhawaii View Post
I own an MRC 977 charger as well and after seeing that notation at the Web site a few days ago, I called Team Orion Avionics to find why they are not recommending MRC's chargers. Suggest you do the same, so you can hear it from them directly.
Would you mind PMing me the answer if you don't want to post it out there?
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Old 08-17-2007, 12:39 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bxpitbull View Post
The call was in order but as always, its best to check the boards first. You know as well as I do, they are going to speak highly of their product first and if there was a problem with another manufacturer's product, chances are great, they wont speak highly of it afterwards. To avoid the rig-a-ra-mo, I started a thread and as always, have received excellent feedback. Thanks fellas.
Contacting Orion doesn’t always yield the full answer. I contacted Orion about the issue and was told by a particular individual that all MRC chargers were problematic with their lipo. I was inquiring specifically about the MRC 989. I asked the same question of an Orion representative that is posting in that long 3200 thread and his answer was more revealing. Buried in that thread he basically said just after the release of their lipo some failures were reported. They isolated the failures to the MRC 977. Whether it was an early version 977 I do not know but apparently the issue was a real one. Orion tested the 977 and found problems. Orion contacted MRC and MRC said they would send them an MRC 989 to test. MRC never sent the charger. I can only guess that forced Orion to warn their customers about potential failures with MRC chargers in general.

My MRC 989 has worked flawlessly with Orion Lipo batteries for many months now. Perhaps it is just the early version 969/977 chargers that had problems but I do not know.
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