Sorry Eric, I only have one charger. It's a Fenix and it only does 18650 cells. It seems to do that fine.
Originally Posted by eric m.
For safety and convenience I run single cell lights (my one 2 cell CR123 was bought before I understood the issues possible with 2+ cell lights) For simplicity, safety, convenience and run time I use lithium primaries in all my AAA, AA and CR123 lights. I know I can give up run time for lumens by running lithium ion rechargeables but that isn't something I generally have need of or interest in. I also don't go through so many batteries that cost is a big issue. If I burned up a cell every day or two I'd feel differently about that, I'm sure.
I'm sure there are folks who have deeper experience with rechargeables than I do.
Used with a bit of moderation (more than one level mode) a CR123 can last a VERY long time. If you buy them online even a quality cell from say Duracell, Energizer or Panasonic is about $2.
While I prefer rechargeable cells and often of those AA or AAA's, primaries can last and last. With their shelf life of 10-15 years I always have a few around the house.
I have had good luck with Battery Junction's brand of CR123's, I prefer single cell lights which should be safer. For two or multi cell lights, I would recommend changing to protected 18650's.
I was watching a video on youtube the other day with a 60w HID light that took 4x18650's and the guy recommended using unprotected cells with it, that's extremely crazy in my opinion.
Oh, my bad, I have a RRT-0 with a tail switch and control ring.
Originally Posted by knolan
I don't mind unprotected Li-Co's if it's one cell; the lack of a protection circuit can be a great thing as it won't trip and leave you with a light that doesn't function. For multiples, typically, the cells aren't under as much load but they should be voltage-matched to a fastidious level (which most people don't do). I agree that it's generally a dumb approach.
Originally Posted by Donut
Now, if I had to use multiple cells (like 18650's) I wouldn't use anything but AW IMR's. They are unprotected but the Li-Mn chemistry is way safer. Capacity is bunk compared to some other cells but the efficiency upwards of 3a is pretty competitive and they don't sag as bad as most lithium cobalts. The main thing though is the less likely chance of explosion and no chance of one with flames.
There are reasons to use multiple cells in a light. A few primaries can give you nice runtime or a few li-ions can give you a higher potential performance ceiling than one large cell. My P60 is running 5 amps through a XML2 dedome for upwards of 1300 lumens off a single IMR18650. I've considered going with a host using two IMR18650's and running a MTG2 for like 3000 lumens...it's a bit silly though. :p
I have a Eagletac 6 Nichia light that uses 3 18650's. I put 3 IMR 18650's in it. It's been sitting for a couple of months. I went to turn it on yesterday and it didn't light. I opened it up and one of the batteries has a terminal that is rusting. I imagine that the one battery is dead.
I always figured an IMR cell was good for semi-long term storage. I need to check with AW on what his thoughts are.
Oh bummer :(
That's how I keep all my lights (loaded with IMRs). I think for optimal storage it should be room temp and discharged to half but I keep em at 4.2v or thereabouts.
I posted in AW's IMR thread, we'll see what he says.
No need to be sorry Ken! I was just expecting a quicker response from the brothers on the Forum! I'm new to this flashlight thing, but my friend on the jail CERT team has been talking to me about the advantages of these lights! He also got me started on Spyderco! Before I buy anything I research to the best of my ability, and that often includes people who have first hand experience and two-way information flow! That you cannot get just by going to reviews on the Internet. Thanks for your response! :)
Originally Posted by kbuzbee
AW says my IMR batteries are approximately 20 years old. :p (I ordered them in 2008.)
He says that you should keep them above 3.8 volts for storage. (Seems high.) He also says that LiIon batteries usually last about 5 years whether they are used or not. I have several batteries that are probably 10 years old. Too bad I don't have a metered Lithium battery charger to test them.
Maybe that is something I will look at getting next.
After doing a little bit of checking. It doesn't look like they make a charger that will discharge Lithium cells. The best I can find is ones with a voltage meter on them.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/221373282581?lpid=82 (This has a picture showing only accurate to 0.1 volts.)
This is kind of interesting: http://www.batteryjunction.com/wuprcwamepoa.html
I don't have a hobby charger that can discharge cells or even a load-tester like a ZTS for testing primaries. The main one I use is a Cottonpicker Triple Setting USB charger that does 1 cell and has a digital readout.
IMHO, testing a cell's voltage every so often is a good indication of it's relative life. That and excessive drain when in use. The more frequent you check, the safer things get.
I guess I've been a bit abusive to my rechargeable batteries. I charge them, I put them in a light, and maybe every 6 months I recharge them unless the light stops working, then I charge it at that time.