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Thread: I just bought a battery pack welder

  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default I just bought a battery pack welder

    I was looking at various battery pack welders for making my own MadMaxaBeam/Mac type battery packs that use the nickel strips, and most of them are several thousand bucks....with one highly recommended exception...This Sunstone single phase welder is about $1,000 but once their last two are sold, their lowest end model will be $2,200...with some improved features.

    I talked to several people who have used this with Li-Ion, LiPo, NiMH, NiCd and say it works great, and with a power booster can make a double spot weld every 1/2 second. I also wanted one of these to be able to weld Li-Ion since you cannot solder them.

    Some guys buy lathes.....this just seemed like a fun and useful toy. The Nickel strips work well in packs up to about 30-40 Amp draw. Beyond that soldering works better, which I also have started doing.

    If anyone is thinking of getting a relatively low cost battery pack spot welder, they now have one left at this price model.

  2. #2

    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Congratulations, Lux!

    Can't wait to see what you churn out with that beast.

  3. #3
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Yeah, I wanted one even though I know I will never recoup the cost of it...and also because I want to be able to make Li-Ion packs with secure balancing taps.

    I have all the parts to make any of those battery packs like these:




  4. #4
    Administrator Norm's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Those packs look fantastic Lux, when do you start offering them for sale?
    Norm

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by LuxLuthor View Post
    I was looking at various battery pack welders for making my own MadMaxaBeam/Mac type battery packs that use the nickel strips, and most of them are several thousand bucks....with one highly recommended exception...This Sunstone single phase welder is about $1,000 but once their last two are sold, their lowest end model will be $2,200...with some improved features.

    I talked to several people who have used this with Li-Ion, LiPo, NiMH, NiCd and say it works great, and with a power booster can make a double spot weld every 1/2 second. I also wanted one of these to be able to weld Li-Ion since you cannot solder them.

    Some guys buy lathes.....this just seemed like a fun and useful toy. The Nickel strips work well in packs up to about 30-40 Amp draw. Beyond that soldering works better, which I also have started doing.

    If anyone is thinking of getting a relatively low cost battery pack spot welder, they now have one left at this price model.
    Can you bore a hole, face, turn or cut threads with that battery pack welder? No comparison to a lathe at all!
    Bill

    I'm a retired mechanic not a electronic/electrical engineer!

  6. #6
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    I didn't read it as a direct comparison. Lux wouldn't try to tribore his light with a welder, in the same way you wouldent try to weld a batterypack together with a laith.

    I read his post as, Lux has, in part, justified the high expence of this welder to himself because some people go to the extravagance of buying a lathe to mill their own mag's, when they could be milled buy other people here on CPF.

    Lux has bought a fairly pricey battery welder, even thought he has adequate soldering gear to do the job, as a nice to have extravagance, as he is keen to use the best materials and tools in his mods, to get the best out, rather than get a company like cheapbatterypacks to do the welds for him.

    Nice find lux, but a bit on the pricey side for me though, How about some pics of the packs you've made please, if you get the time.

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Hello LuxLuthor,

    I think it is a great investment...

    Tom
    Behind every Great man there's always a woman rolling her eyes...

    Most batteries don't die - they are tortured to near death, then murdered...

  8. #8
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Yowsa! Wish I had a spot welder. I didn't realize they cost that much. The only drawback would be that I would probably be swimming up to my ears in battery packs that I would want to assemble with one

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    *Flashaholic* jtice's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Ah very nice !

    So, how long can you get my 2C ROP Mag to run?

    ~John

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Interesting piece of kit - I'm sure you'll enjoy making extra packs for your hotwires, and designing new ones. You could recoup your investment making custom packs for other CPFers too.
    Resistance is futile...

  11. #11

    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Lux,
    Let me know when you strart to make soe lights of your own.
    Joe

  12. #12
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by Raoul_Duke View Post
    I didn't read it as a direct comparison. Lux wouldn't try to tribore his light with a welder, in the same way you wouldent try to weld a batterypack together with a laith.

    I read his post as, Lux has, in part, justified the high expence of this welder to himself because some people go to the extravagance of buying a lathe to mill their own mag's, when they could be milled buy other people here on CPF.

    Lux has bought a fairly pricey battery welder, even thought he has adequate soldering gear to do the job, as a nice to have extravagance, as he is keen to use the best materials and tools in his mods, to get the best out, rather than get a company like cheapbatterypacks to do the welds for him.

    Nice find lux, but a bit on the pricey side for me though, How about some pics of the packs you've made please, if you get the time.
    No need to justify the purchase or mention a lathe. If you want to do pro work on flashlight heads, tubes, etc., a lathe would be the tool/machine to have. If you want to be a pro at battery pack building, I say a spot welder is your ticket.

    If you've seen some of my posts, you'll know that I purchased some pretty pricey equipment myself, it's my money!

    No spot welder but I have a 10" Rockwell/Delta lathe that I purchase it 1972.
    Bill

    I'm a retired mechanic not a electronic/electrical engineer!

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    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    I need a spot welder too, but I can't possibly spend so much money on one.
    I tried using my soldering gun with two sharp thick wires in place of the tip, but it's too low power.

    The next project involves using a large capacitor... a few dozen amps blasting through the tab should do the job.
    What could possibly go wrong?

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    Flashaholic* matrixshaman's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by Fallingwater View Post
    I need a spot welder too, but I can't possibly spend so much money on one.
    I tried using my soldering gun with two sharp thick wires in place of the tip, but it's too low power.

    The next project involves using a large capacitor... a few dozen amps blasting through the tab should do the job.
    What could possibly go wrong?
    Yeah I was thinking along those lines too. Get a couple of huge UltraCaps and as long as you're not in a hurry probably a computer power supply should do the trick. Or just use a 12 volt car battery to charge the caps and keep a charger on the battery. It looks like they are just using 800,000 fd caps at 4 volts. Of course if you got the Bux like Lux then you go for the lab grade setup
    There is no important work, there are only a series of moments to demonstrate your mastery and impeccability. Almine

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Wow Lux, way to go!

    I was actually rather surprised that someone who clearly appreciates quality as much as you would cheap out on both a multimeter and digital caliper, and this is more inline with what I expected. It will let you make super-clean OEM looking connections.

    Hope you go into business assembling custom battery packs for sale in Custom & Mod B/S/T! May I suggest Li-ion M6-R packs with balancing taps?

  16. #16
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Wow, what a neat tool. I'm anxious to see what you'll offer CPFers in order to recoup your investment plus make a few $ for yourself.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    I wonder, after welding, do you check the quality/resistance of your work? You'd need a milliohm meter or impedance meter for that! A DMM with REL/Zero would be marginal for that purpose.
    Bill

    I'm a retired mechanic not a electronic/electrical engineer!

  18. #18
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Yeah, I was just trying to justify my extravagance on this...comparing it to some of the other expensive tools this hobby has pulled some of us into buying (like a lathe). I thought about getting a lathe, as my dad had one and a lot of other machine tools, and he taught me how to use them growing up. A lathe would be another nice tool likely in the category of spending more than you would recoup for the expense.

    I did return that Tripplett DMM after I blew an Amp fuse, and could not find replacements anywhere, and with the generosity of a CPF member, got a Fluke 179 which I'm appreciating more and more over time.

    I'm sure I will make some packs including Li-Ion with tabs for members. I just thought I would grab one of these because the lowest priced quality welder will double in price after they sell their last unit.

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    Flashaholic* N162E's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Way Cool!! What type of handpieces/jigs ? do you have to apply the welds? Did the tools come with ithe welder? Pictures please!!
    Fred R. Elias Jr. N162E
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  20. #20
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by N162E View Post
    Way Cool!! What type of handpieces/jigs ? do you have to apply the welds? Did the tools come with ithe welder? Pictures please!!
    I got a power booster that lets you do welds every 1/2 second, dual probe electrode so it does two spot welds each time, foot trigger pedal. I'll take some pix when I get it in the next couple days.

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Lux, you are SERIOUSLY involved with this!!

    Based on the amount of intense research you have done on various other topics, I want to be first in line if you decide to sell some of your creations.

    Have a ball,

    -Harv

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Do let me know if you put battery packs for sale?

    Thanks

  23. #23
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    If you guys want me to do some of these, it sound like a fun project.


    I confirmed with their head engineer (Aaron) that the unit I got works very well for attaching Li-Ion tabs which was one of the main things I wanted it for. He gave me the Nickel strip thickness and settings he uses for Li-Ion packs since the cap metal is thinner than it is on Ni-Cad or NiMH.

    There was just no reliable way to make balance tap leads for various setups without being able to weld a tap to the cell.

    I got the dual hand held probes (heavier duty set) that are shown in this Quicktime movie.

  24. #24
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    How do you stop the cell terminal heating up when you weld the tab? Presumably some of the heat is conducted along the tab to the body of the cell - do you attach a clamp or something as a temporary heat-sink?
    Resistance is futile...

  25. #25
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    As you can see with that video, the weld is made with lightning fast pin point contact that fuses the strip to battery surface with no significant heat...which is why you only see welded tabs put on Li-Ions. The speed and minimal heat is why this is used for pack applications.

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    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by LuxLuthor View Post
    http://sunstoneengineering.com/site/files/SunstoneAttachmentHighQ.mov
    Wait, THAT thing costs a thousand bucks? O_o

  27. #27

    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Ive seen a few cold-heat's now for 9.99. hear there junk though.

    no, really that seems wicked cool.

    last week or so i hand soldered 12 AAA's with electrical solder and #12 stranded. wrapped them with masking tape.
    cheap, but sloppy and miserable work. can i say again how miserable it was?

    i diddnt even know they made things like this, but its wicked cool, even though i could never afford it.
    thought it was all done on an assembly line with mystery machines.

  28. #28
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by orionlion82 View Post
    i diddnt even know they made things like this, but its wicked cool, even though i could never afford it.
    thought it was all done on an assembly line with mystery machines.
    Yeah, me too....by little dwarfs using "Elven Magic."

    Nothing wrong with NiCad & NiMH soldering, which is made easier with a magnetic battery jig & 60-70W hammerhead tip iron.

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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Quote Originally Posted by matrixshaman View Post
    Yeah I was thinking along those lines too. Get a couple of huge UltraCaps and as long as you're not in a hurry probably a computer power supply should do the trick. Or just use a 12 volt car battery to charge the caps and keep a charger on the battery. It looks like they are just using 800,000 fd caps at 4 volts. Of course if you got the Bux like Lux then you go for the lab grade setup

    You would need to use low inductance caps. for that use.
    Normal caps. won't be able to dump all their power quickly enough for welding.
    Search the surplus market for "photo flash" caps.

  30. #30
    Flashaholic* Trashman's Avatar
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    Default Re: I just bought a battery pack welder

    Wow, you can nearly corner the CPF market for custom battery packs! I'm sure your investment, in time, will pay for itself. Luthercorp may become a reality.

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