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Zapped some cells, made SPARKS!

Zapped some cells, made SPARKS!

Old 04-01-2004, 05:45 AM
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Zapped some cells, made SPARKS!

Bought a battery zapper/maintainer (Integy Xipp Xapper 3300) and zapped some cells last night! Read the instructions twice, was pretty confident. Powered it up and I zapped 34 3300 cells at 80volts as per the instructions.

Well, 31 of them appeared to zap no problem. 3 of them however, made a big spark and made a popping sound when I hit the zap button The cells still read 1.2volts on the metre, so my question is: did I kill those 3 cells? I've rebuilt them into packs and marked the ones that sparked. Instructions say not to charge them for 3 days, but I'm curious to know if I literally zapped them.

Guess the only way to know for sure is to cycle them huh? Did I zap them with too much voltage? Maybe the cells were already bad? What is the ideal voltage for 3300's? 2400's?

Thanks in advance for comments!
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Old 04-01-2004, 05:49 AM
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Did you take alll the soldier off the cells before zaping them?
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Old 04-01-2004, 05:57 AM
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As RandyB says, it sparked because there was not a full clean contact and it arced on you.

In order to stop the sparks, you have to remove all solder to get a clean solid contact.

Wear gloves and eye protection.
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Old 04-01-2004, 05:58 AM
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I have zapped many packs and the sparks are just frightening, and I love the shotgun sound ...
Now seriously, when you zap packs the sparks came from incorrect contacts. Just be very carefull on thickening the contact knobs, on your zapper.
The sparked cells are also zapped, but with less energy, because the loss you have just seen and hearded.
They recomend resting the cells for 72h, but no problem cycling them just immediatly after zapping.
Be aware that before zapping your cells must read at most 0,9V, otherwise no problem.
Zapping cells, with the available zappers, are for maintenance and, from my experience works better on NiCad then on NiMH. But it works on new GP cells.
Once again - be very carefull when zapping. The energy on your zapper can kill, or causing seriously injury if not handled with care.
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Old 04-01-2004, 06:00 AM
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Oh crap, you have to take it all off? I made the surface as flat as possible with the iron, so there was some solder left on there. Well, now I know. Thanks guys! How do I get the solder completely off? Sand it off?

Hahaha, yah I jumped pretty good when the cell went BANG!! I did have the goggles on, no gloves, will have to get some.

I had the cells on a tray and they were dead-shorted for a couple of days. It says you can zap while they're in side-by-side form, but I couldn't get them to fit, so had to take them all apart.
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Old 04-01-2004, 06:04 AM
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Hi Gutter,

I have never taked out the solder.
All I do is being very carefull on contact and tighckening hard the contact knobs.
But if the solder surface is very irregular just remove it.
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Old 04-01-2004, 06:06 AM
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Buy a solder sucker, radio shack stocks them. Still might not take it all off though...
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Old 04-01-2004, 06:06 AM
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Thanks for the tips Gearless I will clean the zapper contacts tonight. Do you have any recommended voltages to zap each battery type at? I have a LOAD of 2400's that I could zap and make into good practice packs.

Solder sucker, I get it. If I need to, I just h eat solder, sucker will pull most of it away
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Old 04-01-2004, 07:04 AM
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You want the cells to look as much like virgin cells as you can. The radio shack solder sucker works well. I have one and they're cheap. Don't get the bulb one, get the spring loaded one. After that, lightly sand off the excess solder with a dremmel or something and than try to polish it and than clean it. HTH

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Old 04-01-2004, 07:13 AM
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First cycle your cells and take notes, like peak voltage, runtime, internal resistance and average voltage (I have GFX's . ), then zap.
I do all my zapping with voltages raging from 50 to 70.
Newer cells 70V, older ones 50V.
Sometimes with stubborn ones I zap 2 times with 50V.
Let them rest, if you are not in a hurry, and cycle again. Take notes and see the results.
From my experience I can tell that you always lower internal resistance, but sometimes not enough to see big increments in runtime.
The most dramatic results came from some GP packs. They show, after being zapped, increments in 20 to 40 seconds.
Have luck.
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Old 04-01-2004, 08:22 AM
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Default Runtime calculation?

Sweet, you guys have been EXTREMELY helpful I'll stop at Radio Shack for a solder sucker before I zap the 2400's. I did take notes on the packs last week in anticipation of getting the zapper.
A question I do have is with the runtime though. I'm not getting anywhere NEAR what the label says when I discharge on the GFX. I use 5.4V cutoff and 30amp discharge. Is there some kind of calculation I have to apply to the results, or should they be close right off the GFX? I think I got 290's for my 3300's. Nowhere near what's on the label.
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Old 04-01-2004, 08:29 AM
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could it be because your cells are old? everything drops as you use your pack more and more! and you said you tray them and dead short them right? that often kills the runtime but you get more punch out of the pack
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Old 04-01-2004, 08:49 AM
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Well,

I guess we don't need to go to extreme measures just for zapping the cells.

gearless and I zapped 6 of my packs and they are assembled and have tubes in them.

We just made sure the contacts were real good by tightening the contacts.

In 6 packs just one sparked. The noise and the black smoke adds some thrill to the process

The results were good, considering that my packs are more than 1 year old.

ALL of them improved AV voltage, IR and a little in run time.

To give you an example:

A pack that was dropping below 7V at 150 seconds, now remais above 7V almost 30 seconds more (to around 180 seconds).

The voltage improved .007 per cell and they are prime quality packs. The cells are GP3300 2nd generation.
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Old 04-01-2004, 11:11 AM
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It happens the same thing to my DCX3000. Integy tech support recommend to make sure the contact point are free & clean of solder. Yes I use the R/S thingy and then use dremel to clean it even further. Good luck.
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Old 04-01-2004, 12:53 PM
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Hi Antoniop,

Nice to hear from you !

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