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Old 09-19-2007, 07:55 AM   #31
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If the pack is correctly mounted you will have no problems with these packs. They have a very durable finish on the packs per the guys at smc. I have a pack coming and I am going to do a write up between them and the orion packs. Also remember there is no such thing as an indestructible pack. Do you really think that exposed 4200's are any safer than a lipo pack that has 2 or 3 layers of protection on it. There is no safety issues in running these packs compared to Nimh, the biggest thing is properly charging them. Any cell will give you problems / fire hazards when punctured, crack open a fully charged 4200 and you have a firecracker just like anything else. I have been around r/c since we were matching 1200mah batteries in fiberglass pan cars. And there are always chancing of things exploding if you don't treat them properly.

These threads about the lipo batteries are silly. There are so many fun things that are dangerous if not treated correctly. I mean does the risk of fire keep you from putting gas in your car. Do you think major companies like SMC, Orion, Peak and soon to be every other battery manufacturer would sell products that would burn down your house. NO WAY. If they are used correctly, they are safe.

I look forward to trying the SMC packs. Like they stated, if they weren't any good, they wouldn't have the smc name on them. remember these are custom cells made especially for SMC, and the biggest reason there is no hard shell is that they know it will hold the heat in the pack. Take a look at the Tamiya pack attacthed and compare that to the cells that you buy today. IT IS THE SAME THING. People worried becouse they are not doing homework. Now if you guys want to keep whining and run heaver packs that hold more heat then keep asking for hard shelled packs. But if you want the fastest packs available then you have to be willing to take a little more precaution with you equipment.

Just my opinion.

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Old 09-19-2007, 07:59 AM   #32
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I ran one for the first time last night in my 19t T2 07. I ran the same lap times as my best IB4200's. No more buying two packs to get one good one !
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:16 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by bigemike View Post
People worried becouse they are not doing homework. Now if you guys want to keep whining and run heaver packs that hold more heat then keep asking for hard shelled packs.
I have done my homework and I have centered on hardcased packs as the most reasonable solution. You obviously think differently. However I won't accuse you of not doing your homework and whining.

Everyone has their own take on what makes a quality lipo pack and it will be interesting to see what finally gets settled on.
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:23 AM   #34
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I just feel that people are being a little overly cautious with the new technology. But whatever works for you, I just always want the lightest, fastest product I can buy with the best voltage and run time. I think these new packs are where it is at. I guess it depends on driving style ect. I think that the plastic hard shell packs are good for the same person that runs stick packs currently. If you are a racer and already run exposed cells, what is the difference. Why not enclose the cells you are running now?
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:27 AM   #35
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I understand the concern about puncture and damage to the "unprotected cells". We are seriously asking these same questions here. We will do whatever is safest and in the consumer's best interest. I think over time we will have a better grasp of what works the best and we will adapt. We are not against a hard casing at all. We just made this decision months ago and it now appears that the push is for plastic casing.
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:43 AM   #36
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It's all good. There's enough arguing going on lately without the lipo supporters fighting over details like this. We all have our reasons to support aspects regarding these packs and only time will tell what the final accepted product will be. Personally I feel that cell source in all lipo needs to be disclosed. Some agree, some disagree.

The ones that disagree are simply wrong.
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:47 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Jack Rimer View Post
My advice would be to just run them and then decide what you think.
Im sorry but this advice seems kind of irresponsible to me. The first thing that is brought up about lipo batteries in RC is always safety. How can someone just buy something and judge if it is safe or not. If it isnt then we wont know until its too late. I agree SMC has a great reputation and I am in no way implying the product is unsafe I just think its important to share the information rather then saying to "just run the pack and see".

I will get off my soapbox now. No offense to SMC. Sorry if this was already brought up. This is as far as I had gotten in the thread when I read this.
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:48 AM   #38
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I understand the concern about puncture and damage to the "unprotected cells". We are seriously asking these same questions here. We will do whatever is safest and in the consumer's best interest. I think over time we will have a better grasp of what works the best and we will adapt. We are not against a hard casing at all. We just made this decision months ago and it now appears that the push is for plastic casing.
For what it's worth, it appears the Losi, Schumacher and new TRF416 all make provisions specifically to fit the hard packs. It's the closest thing we've got to a standard size for LiPo right now.

I'm sure there will be no shortage of people coming here telling us that soft packs are just fine, and maybe they're right. Many of us have arrived at our opinions based on a year or more of real-world experience running different batteries, so it's not like we're just going on a hunch.

Also, it's worth noting that so far with LiPo, better voltage has always meant lower cycle life, and more volatile chemistry. Maybe that won't be the case with these cells, and hopefully it isn't, because that's what R/C needs. But companies like Kokam have sacrificed a little voltage to improve cycle life and safety, which are two things that are quite a bit more important than that extra bit of voltage.
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:51 AM   #39
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Take a look at the Tamiya pack attacthed and compare that to the cells that you buy today. IT IS THE SAME THING.
Mike,

You mean except for the part where a NiMH is already in a hard shell and a LiPo is wrapped in soft foil?
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Old 09-19-2007, 08:54 AM   #40
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Are there any other applications of lipo batteries in the "real world" that use just the soft pack? When I think of lipo in other applications I always see it surrounded by plastic like in cell phones, laptops, power tools, etc.
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Old 09-19-2007, 09:07 AM   #41
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Mike,

You mean except for the part where a NiMH is already in a hard shell and a LiPo is wrapped in soft foil?
I mean that the technology looks totally dated today. I would bet that in a few years lipo's with hard cases will be nothing more than a memory. Just like the hard cased pack.
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Old 09-19-2007, 09:12 AM   #42
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Default lipo's in plastic cases

In the "real world" applications (not r/c), lipos and li-ons are always encased in plastic cases, or they are permanently in devices where they are surrounded and protected by plastic, metal, etc.

All sub c cells have a steel tube that protects the battery, so saying an exposed lipo is the same as an "exposed" 4200 pack is just silly.

The point is simple, smc says that the decision was made months ago to go with no case. The orion packs have been out for close to 2 years. This is just a case of a matcher (smc,) buying built packs from a factory, and then defending their product.

Quick question: If the smc lipo pack is $150 (lets say $120 at discount) and the pack is dented, will smc replace it, or will the racer simply toss the pack and buy a new one? What if the packs is ejected from the car and scrapes along the ground?

Lipo packs are currently running 2-3 times the cost of nimh, so running an experiment that says-> try our packs for $120 doesn't make much sense does it.

Even though orion has a patent on the hard case, you could probably modify the case slightly and use it without a patent infringement (how about not using the banana sockets?). But that would require an investment and it is much easier to simply slap your company logo on a product and sell it for $30 more than the maxamps pack of equal capacity.

Orion has the best idea for LIPO packs, and the only criticism I have ever heard about it is the 3200 doesn't have enough capacity. Hopefully orion will rectify that shortly.

To SMC, maxamps, and all the others (except orion/peak)-> design a hard shell that will cost you $1-$2 dollars per pack and stop defending exposed LIPO cells.

One more thing: using LIPO's in a chassis where the pack is down the middle and fully protected is completely different from running lipo in a chassis where the pack is 3mm from the edge. My argument is not only about safety from fire, but also safety from having to replace a $120 pack after a crash.
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Old 09-19-2007, 09:12 AM   #43
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Im sorry but this advice seems kind of irresponsible to me. The first thing that is brought up about lipo batteries in RC is always safety. How can someone just buy something and judge if it is safe or not. If it isnt then we wont know until its too late. I agree SMC has a great reputation and I am in no way implying the product is unsafe I just think its important to share the information rather then saying to "just run the pack and see".

I will get off my soapbox now. No offense to SMC. Sorry if this was already brought up. This is as far as I had gotten in the thread when I read this.
It is not irresponsible at all when taken in context. I was referring to a performance comparison between our packs and other similar packs. There seems to be a perception that any pack not encased in plastic is somehow characterized as "cheap Chinese crap". My point is that before coming to any conclusions about our "uncased" packs, perhaps you need to get your stickers blown off by one of these before formulating an opinion.
In fact, I just posted that safety and the well being of the consumer is our paramount concern.
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Old 09-19-2007, 09:19 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Jack Rimer View Post
It is not irresponsible at all when taken in context. I was referring to a performance comparison between our packs and other similar packs. There seems to be a perception that any pack not encased in plastic is somehow characterized as "cheap Chinese crap". My point is that before coming to any conclusions about our "uncased" packs, perhaps you need to get your stickers blown off by one of these before formulating an opinion.
In fact, I just posted that safety and the well being of the consumer is our paramount concern.
You need to go back an reread your post. I didnt take anything out of context of the way it was in the thread. You may have meant it differently but it didnt come out that way.

How do we know if its cheap (unsafe) Chinese crap or not?

I hope this doesnt blow the stickers off any car. Kinda defeats the grassroots efforts to run nimh and lipo together since they are roughly equal.
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Old 09-19-2007, 09:19 AM   #45
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Even though orion has a patent on the hard case, you could probably modify the case slightly and use it without a patent infringement (how about not using the banana sockets?).
.

Patent or no patent orion have NOT got this sown up atall with the hard case

trakpower for 1 banna plugs & a 2mm balencing port aswell
another company has released a hard case li-po aswell over here JP perkins

hard case (for now) is the way to get cars & clubs to use them for racing safley
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