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Building Your Own Battery Zapper

Building Your Own Battery Zapper


Old 07-28-2003, 04:51 PM
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Default Re: Re: Build your own

Originally posted by BigDogRacing
Jimmy, your a couple thousand high on your prices there bro. A real good zapper costs about $500- $600 and the really good ones like the popular matchers are using costs about double if I remember correctly. You are correct about the virgin cells needing a very high power zapper.
LOL.. I was quoting a rough estimate which includes a computer controlled analyzer. Ours cost us over $12,000 but it can fire 16 cells at once and systematically read the cells core and voltage including IR and feed through another computer to diagnose the min/max voltage to best suit the cells individually while adjusting the right voltage per cell and includes a printout and graphs. and to top it off, it was pretested to fire 10,000 cells without false reading.

But you're right in terms of getting an aftermarket one for $500. Just won't last at much and the voltage is lower the ours.

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Old 07-28-2003, 06:21 PM
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sweeeet!!! I'm sorry if I don't recognize you Jimmy, but who is "we"?
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Old 07-28-2003, 07:05 PM
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Jimmy is WAY off man!!! No one was talking about spending thousands of dollars on some contraption to zap virgin cells! And come to think of it....I do not know any enthusiest that uses a "computer controlled analyzer" in the pits! And I hope that the average hobbyist is not trying to send 100,000,000,000,000 volts through their worn out batts! How many of us here buy cases of virgin cells?? NOT ME!! WHY? b/c this is my HOBBY. I am not in the battery business. Most anyone can build a zapper that will work just fine for basic maint on nicad cells....though I don't recommend using the zapper diagram posted earlier in this thread! Sure, Jimmy may have the most ultra cool mega superior battery zapper pumping out a quadrillion volts, but.....seems to me like Jimmy is in the Batt business. Sounds exactly like something that a battery co. would say to keep you buying new cells rather than perform a little basic maint. on your own. So, has anyone else (who is not a business) spent 12-15K on one of these things? No one ever claimed that the zappers being discussed here were the best or how long it should last. I do not think that anyone was talking about zapping brand new cells, and no way in HELL would you get the numbers that Jimmy quoted out of a 3 yr old pack no matter what you use on it! Get real. So don't let big words and fast talk fool you. Do your homework and you can have a reasonable priced zapper of your own that will work just fine to extend the life of your cells, but won't make them ultranuclear radioactive mega cells. But if you want to start your own international battery company....I guess that jimmy hit the nail right on the head.
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Old 07-28-2003, 08:45 PM
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zapping cells (new or old) with excessive voltage will probably shorten the lifespan very fast. this is fine for sponsored drivers who need the highest voltage; but for the average racer, do you want a pack that doesn't last after paying so much for them?
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Old 07-29-2003, 12:00 AM
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For old ni-cads disasemble the pack, discharge each cell completly, dead short and zap. Most commercial zappers are around 100-130 volts. But you can easily change the above 200 volt to any voltage you want by changing one of the resistors.
You can also very the amount of current you want to zap your battery with by verying the size of the cap.
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Old 07-29-2003, 01:29 AM
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FYI. Jimmy's zapper is for matching. This would not be a maintenance zapper used at trackside. His zapper is a "high tech" machine used in his battery matching shop. Fukuyama Racing cells to be available late August/September.
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Old 07-29-2003, 05:27 AM
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Default home made zapper

I built one myself and tested it on a CDC charger. My unmatched
pack had an average voltage of 7.15v at 20amp discharge.
After zapping them on the homemade zapper and disharging
again the ave. voltage was 7.21v at 20amp discharge. The
test was done 2 days apart and on the same batteries all
on the first charge. I just changed the capacitor to a bigger
one with the same voltage. Beware it can cause electric shock
similar to a stunn gun.
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Old 09-27-2015, 05:32 PM
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Smile zapper

Originally Posted by jakes7 View Post
Have you ever owned an item that runs off of NiCad batteries? The answer is most likely yes. If you have a portable phone, a laptop, or any type of item that uses rechargeable batteries, nine times out of ten they will be NiCad type batteries. I know I'm not the only one that is frustrated when the portable phone stops working because the batteries won't charge; when my camcorder will only run for a few minutes or when my laptop battery only lasts for about an hour. Why do these batteries run down?

The answer is that Nickel Cadmium batteries have a particular chemical property. They only like to be recharged when they are fully discharged. Through age and by not fully discharging them, they build up a memory of where they charge stops. This is caused by tiny chemical whiskers that form to short the battery out. The batteries won't fully recharge because a shorted battery won't recharge.

The answer to this problem is not throwing the batteries away as many people do, but by building the NiCad Zapper. What this project does is send a high voltage current through the battery for a very short amount of time. The time is so short that it doesn't hurt the battery, but it literally blows up these little whiskers; effectively resetting the batteries memory and in most cases making it just like new. I built one of these puppies for my father as a Christmas present. He had four marine CB radios who wouldn't keep a charge very long. It cost $80 to replace each battery. The zapper I gave him, that I built from this circuit, restored them to good as new and he saved quite a bit of money.

How it works:

When assembling this thing, the two wires that are labeled "Test Clips", "+" and "-", should come out of the plastic enclosure and be connected to insulated alligator clips to reduce the risk of shock (And believe me, you will shock yourself). The switch should be turned to the charge position, then clips connected (or held) to the "+" and "-" side of the battery and then thrown to the zap position. Repeate this three of four times to make sure you "zapped" the whiskers. If all went well, recharge the battery and it should work like new. The 10K capacitor is placed parallel to the leads in order to discharge the capacitor if they are not hooked up to a battery, this way it is less likely for anyone to shock themselves.


When assembling this project, BE VERY CAREFUL. I shocked myself several times while building it, but I'm also a bit accident prone. Also, it is a good idea to use a 1/2 watt or better resistor for R1. I blew up the resistor every time I turned it to the charge position. I finally used a 47Ohm 1/2 resistor and it worked just fine.

Parts List

22 W
47K W
10K W
80-100mF, 250WVDC Electrolytic Capacitor
1N4007 1-amp, 1000 PIV, silicon rectifier diode
120V AC neon assembly (Radio Shack # 272-707 or similar)
AC Plug & Line Cord
DPDT toggle switch
Additional parts include insulated alligator clips, and an all-plastic enclosure.

All resistors are 5 to 10 percent tolerance, 1/4 watt.
How much?
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Old 09-27-2015, 08:57 PM
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Originally Posted by dfearis3 View Post
How much?
A little over 12 years
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Old 09-28-2015, 06:54 AM
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ROFL gotta laugh when someone revives an thread this old. Who uses NICad Batteries any more?
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Old 09-28-2015, 07:17 AM
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Aren't you glad we don't need these things anymore?
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