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Thread: cr123a question

  1. #1
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    Default cr123a question

    Does non rechargeable CR123 has the same safety concerns as rechargeable CR123?

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Question is kinda vague. Detail what concerns you may have.
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Both have risks, but those risks differ.
    ... is the archimedes peak

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    I remember reading on the forum there were a certain brand of cr123 that had reliability/quality issue, I don't remember which one they were but it has been awhile.

    Do you have to keep on checking voltage with non rechargeable cr123 when use in pair to make sure the voltage stay kind of close to each? Can you use the non rechargeable cr123 til they are completely dead or can't power a device anymore?

    What kind of safety issue does any non rechargeable lithium battery have?

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by carnage View Post
    I remember reading on the forum there were a certain brand of cr123 that had reliability/quality issue, I don't remember which one they were but it has been awhile.

    Do you have to keep on checking voltage with non rechargeable cr123 when use in pair to make sure the voltage stay kind of close to each? Can you use the non rechargeable cr123 til they are completely dead or can't power a device anymore?

    What kind of safety issue does any non rechargeable lithium battery have?
    All USA made CR123a cells are built by Panasonic and rebranded with various labels. I don't know all the wrappers, but but the red Surefire cells and the blue Battery Station cells are USA made Panasonics. These are all I use and I consciously avoid CR123 cells from overseas.

    It is good practice to check the voltage of any lithium cells prior to using them in series, although it is generally unnecessary to check them continually throughout their life cycle. I would, however, check again for matching voltage on a pair of 123's that have been in long term storage.

    There's no problem with discharging primary 123's completely, since they will not be recharged. They should also be electrically insulated during storage and transport.
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by Modernflame View Post
    All USA made CR123a cells are built by Panasonic and rebranded with various labels. I don't know all the wrappers, but but the red Surefire cells and the blue Battery Station cells are USA made Panasonics. These are all I use and I consciously avoid CR123 cells from overseas.

    It is good practice to check the voltage of any lithium cells prior to using them in series, although it is generally unnecessary to check them continually throughout their life cycle. I would, however, check again for matching voltage on a pair of 123's that have been in long term storage.

    There's no problem with discharging primary 123's completely, since they will not be recharged. They should also be electrically insulated during storage and transport.
    Is there any CR123A by Panasonic made in Japan or just look for strictly USA made CR123A?

    What's a good time span to check for matching voltage monthly or yearly?

    By keeping them electrically insulated you mean not to let the battery touch each other or ground out on each other?

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by carnage View Post
    Is there any CR123A by Panasonic made in Japan or just look for strictly USA made CR123A?

    What's a good time span to check for matching voltage monthly or yearly?

    By keeping them electrically insulated you mean not to let the battery touch each other or ground out on each other?
    I'm not sure about other brands or labels. The other guys might know better, but I'm comfortably conservative about batteries and stick to what I know.

    Lithium primary cells have extraordinary shelf lives. There's no need to check monthly or annually. I just meant that if I ran across some older cells from, say, seven or eight years ago, I'd measure the voltage before using them in pairs. I stock lithium primaries, but I use them often enough that my supply is replenished frequently. My oldest cells are about 2 years old and I have no anxiety about their voltage.

    By electrically insulated, I mean that I don't carry them loose in my pocket with keys, change, etc. It's ok for them to touch each other in storage, like they would inside of your flashlight, as long as there is nothing to cause a short circuit. I often use carriers like the Cell Vault from Thyrm, or delrin capsules from Oveready.
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    The CR123A is going to be for a Fenix light that require 2 CR1233A.


    Thanks for the replies!
    Last edited by carnage; 06-18-2017 at 08:36 AM.

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Hello Carnage,

    With a single cell application there are no issues running a CR123 cell down to nothing. The problem comes with multi cell applications.

    In a multi cell application the cells can have a mis match. This allows one cell to reach full discharge before the others. Under some circumstances the other cells may try to reverse charge the empty cell. With adequate current this can result in the empty cell "rapidly venting, sometimes with flame." In this process hydrogen fluoride gas can be released, parts can fly across the room with enough velocity to puncture dry wall, the heat generated can damage things close to the incident site, and so on...

    All of this makes for a "less than ideal" day and there is the possibility of short and long term physical harm.

    The take away is that there is danger associated with stored energy. If you take proper precautions you avoid those dangers. If you push things to the limits you expose yourself to these dangers.

    One way to minimize these dangers is to replace the cells before they are completely used up. Pick up a single cell light that you can use the used cells in to drain the last little amount out of the cells. If you lose track and find that your multi cell light suddenly goes dim, immediately shut it off and remove the cells. Any cell that is extremely hot should be isolated outside to get it out of your living area.

    Usually there are no problems. With additional knowledge you can come up with a "what if" plan that will keep you safe. If you loan your light to others to use, pass along the extra information to help protect them as well.

    Tom
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    With the recent and rapid improvements in efficiency and emitter tech, this is one main reason why I have almost entirely converted to single-cell powered flashlights, for routine purposes.

    While I do still have and use multi-cell flashlights when very high power output is essential, that covers perhaps < 5 % of my general lighting needs....
    ... is the archimedes peak

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    What Silver Fox and Archimedes have said is true. However, to keep things in perspective, I've been using 2 x CR123 type lights for a long time (17 years?) without a problem. I think the point is that one should avoid mixing cells of different brands, ages, or voltages. When I use a pair of CR123's, they are always from the same batch and test out for the same initial voltage. If I were to notice symptoms like a prematurely dimmed light, noises, or odors, I would get the flashlight as far away from human life as possible. But I think that two primary cells from the same batch that test for the same initial voltage can safely be used, even drained completely without incident. That said, there is something to be said for the strategy of using only 1 X CR123 lights, so that matching voltage can never become an issue.

    In my opinion, if your favorite light requires 2 X CR 123, then have fun using it! Just don't mix cells and be sure to prevent short circuiting during storage or transport.
    Last edited by Modernflame; 06-18-2017 at 04:36 PM.
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by SilverFox View Post
    Hello Carnage,

    With a single cell application there are no issues running a CR123 cell down to nothing. The problem comes with multi cell applications.

    In a multi cell application the cells can have a mis match. This allows one cell to reach full discharge before the others. Under some circumstances the other cells may try to reverse charge the empty cell. With adequate current this can result in the empty cell "rapidly venting, sometimes with flame." In this process hydrogen fluoride gas can be released, parts can fly across the room with enough velocity to puncture dry wall, the heat generated can damage things close to the incident site, and so on...

    All of this makes for a "less than ideal" day and there is the possibility of short and long term physical harm.

    The take away is that there is danger associated with stored energy. If you take proper precautions you avoid those dangers. If you push things to the limits you expose yourself to these dangers.

    One way to minimize these dangers is to replace the cells before they are completely used up. Pick up a single cell light that you can use the used cells in to drain the last little amount out of the cells. If you lose track and find that your multi cell light suddenly goes dim, immediately shut it off and remove the cells. Any cell that is extremely hot should be isolated outside to get it out of your living area.

    Usually there are no problems. With additional knowledge you can come up with a "what if" plan that will keep you safe. If you loan your light to others to use, pass along the extra information to help protect them as well.

    Tom
    In layman terms the stronger cell works harder for the weaker cell and by working harder it create more heat, the more heat the more potential there is for something to go work.

    Its seems like I should stick with Eneloop until I get comfortable with Lithium and learn a lot more. With Eneloop is there the same precaution as with Lithium example put battery together in a flashlight about the same age, and voltage?

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by archimedes View Post
    With the recent and rapid improvements in efficiency and emitter tech, this is one main reason why I have almost entirely converted to single-cell powered flashlights, for routine purposes.

    While I do still have and use multi-cell flashlights when very high power output is essential, that covers perhaps < 5 % of my general lighting needs....
    In a single cell flashlight all you have to do is checking voltage so the cell doesn't drop below a certain voltage or is there more to it than checking voltage?

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    When checking battery/cells NiMh or Lithium is there more to it than just voltage?

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by carnage View Post
    In a single cell flashlight all you have to do is checking voltage so the cell doesn't drop below a certain voltage or is there more to it than checking voltage?
    In a single cell application, there's no need to check for voltage. You only need to take that precaution in multi cell lights. The danger of mismatched voltage is that the cell with the higher voltage could charge the weaker cell, which could lead to thermal runaway.

    I understand the concern, but I think that lithium primary cells are safe when shown the proper respect.
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by Modernflame View Post
    In a single cell application, there's no need to check for voltage. You only need to take that precaution in multi cell lights. The danger of mismatched voltage is that the cell with the higher voltage could charge the weaker cell, which could lead to thermal runaway.

    I understand the concern, but I think that lithium primary cells are safe when shown the proper respect.
    Is there any danger with lithium cell that are in something like the Nitecore Tube, Thumb, Tip or charge them and enjoy? I was planning on getting somebody one of the Nitecore product and they know completely nothing about proper care of Lithium cell and I'm not sure if it's a good idea.

    I have to learn about the respect they deserve. That why I have alot of question.

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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Quote Originally Posted by carnage View Post
    Is there any danger with lithium cell that are in something like the Nitecore Tube, Thumb, Tip or charge them and enjoy? I was planning on getting somebody one of the Nitecore product and they know completely nothing about proper care of Lithium cell and I'm not sure if it's a good idea.

    I have to learn about the respect they deserve. That why I have alot of question.
    I'm not very familiar with the devices that you listed, but they appear to use lithium-ion rechargeable cells. There is always some risk with lithium cells, whether rechargeable or primary, but they are in a multitude of devices. Our cell phones, tablets, lap tops, and other devices use them. Accordingly, they appear in the news from time to time as the cause of a fire or injury. Generally they are safe to use, but if the protection circuit is damaged or if the cell was poorly made, there can be an incident, especially during the first few charge/discharge cycles.

    I'd have no problem gifting a lithium ion powered device, but I'd have a good talk with the recipient about battery care. I also don't use any lithium powered device that attaches to my body, like a rechargeable watch or cordless headphones. As I've said, I think these batteries are safe, but showing them proper respect means knowing the potential for a high temperature chemical fire and HF poisoning.
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    Default Re: cr123a question

    Thanks for the replies everyone!

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