18650 in my Zebralight, 18650 to charge my cell phone? 18650 questions

jaross

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I use Panasonic NCR18650B 3400mAh in my Zebralight H600MKII. I charge them with an Intellecharger i2. I think I had a cell die on me (does that happen with these?). It seemed to work fine one day then the next, my Zebralight would turn off after clicking it on. I put the battery in my intellecharger and it got hot and would not hold a charge. Whats going on? I only used that one cell for about a year, is that about the correct lifespan? Also some of the plastic near the positive and negitive ends is starting to tear a little.

After reading, it does concern me to have these Li cells right above my face. However, it would seem that there is some protection built into these cells (when used as single cells, as I do in the Zebralight) and the Zebralight itself has protections built in. It would also seem that if a battery does vent, it will not spray on my face when it is in that headlamp.

What if somehow water got inside the body of my Zebralight? I use this while I ride my bike, and I ride in the rain sometimes. Would having a 'protected' cell protect me if water got inside the headlamp housing?



The other question I have is, would using a '
ml-102 version 8' (google it, as I cannot post links to sales sites here per forum rules) with these same batteries as a backup charger for my cell phone be safe?
 
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SilverFox

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Hello Jaross,

Welcome to CPF.

I am not sure what happened to your battery but if it gets hot and won't hold a charge it is time to recycle it. After doing so you can then analyze how you used the battery to see if the problem was with you or simply a bad battery. On thing that comes to mind is slightly overcharging. If your charger slightly overcharges it can drastically reduce the life of a cell. After a charge, pull the battery and measure its voltage.

Almost all of the "incidents" associated with Li-Ion cells occur during charging. Physical damage can occur during use and that could short the battery out. A good general rule is if you are wearing your headlamp while riding your bike and crash and do a face plant, take the light off and check it to make sure there is no physical damage to the battery. After than take care of any other wounds you may have incurred... :devil:

Li-Ion batteries are sealed. Using them in the rain is not a problem.

The Ml-102 charger seems to be an OK charger.

Tom
 

jaross

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Thanks Tom!

Any suggestions for a single 18650 to USB output cellphone charger other then the Ml-102?

The intellecharger i2 should not over charge, should it? I thought it goes to a slow trickle at a certain point. I thought it was supposed to be one of the safest chargers out there.. That being said, if I see a battery is fully charged on it, I will take it out of the charger.. I don't have a volt meter, but maybe its time to get one.

As far as usage, I rarely ran the batter below 3/4 a charge before charging it back up to full again...
 

Phlogiston

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Hello, Jaross -

The ML-102 used to be a good charger (old HKJ review from 2012) but the newer versions don't terminate charging properly (new HKJ review from 2015). Instead, they continue to trickle charge at about 20mA, which can eventually lead to a very dangerous situation with Li-Ion cells.

You refer to an ML-102 version 8, which would be newer than the one in HKJ's latest review. I hope that means the version 7.1 defect has been corrected, but I haven't seen any test data to prove it, so I wouldn't be inclined to chance my luck.
 

jaross

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Hello, Jaross -

The ML-102 used to be a good charger (old HKJ review from 2012) but the newer versions don't terminate charging properly (new HKJ review from 2015). Instead, they continue to trickle charge at about 20mA, which can eventually lead to a very dangerous situation with Li-Ion cells.

You refer to an ML-102 version 8, which would be newer than the one in HKJ's latest review. I hope that means the version 7.1 defect has been corrected, but I haven't seen any test data to prove it, so I wouldn't be inclined to chance my luck.

Thanks. What if I take the battery out right when my phone is done charging? Would that be safe?

The website I bought it from is fasttech. It is the first result when I type in "ML-102 version 8" It says version 7 in the title, but it specifies that they ship version 8 in fact.. Can you tell from the specs listed if it is safe? I could not see what the version was in that review. Which version is it? Maybe I can still find that version.

EDIT: I just found this: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/38571

anyone know about the Efest Xsmart?? is that safe? I found this, but I don't know what any of these curves mean. I am a logical person, but I am no engineer. http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?381630-Test-Review-of-Charger-Efest-Xsmart
 
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Phlogiston

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Do you know how much current your phone needs to charge? (If the manual doesn't say, but the phone came with a wall adaptor, you should be able to find something like "Output: 5V 1A" written on the adaptor.)

The reason I ask is that the old ML-102 only provided about 650mA (0.65A) at most. The Xsmart is rated for 1A (maximum 1.2A) and the version 7.1 ML-102 is rated for 1.2A.

My smartphone's manual recommends a 1.5A power supply for maximum charging speed. It can charge with less, but only slowly. I just use a ready made power bank that can output 2.1A and leave it at that.

Thanks. What if I take the battery out right when my phone is done charging? Would that be safe?

That should be fine. It's actually good practice to always take the battery out of any charger when you're not using it.

The problem with the version 7.1 ML-102 is not when you use it to power another device, but when you put a battery in it and charge the battery up.

The website I bought it from is fasttech. It is the first result when I type in "ML-102 version 8" It says version 7 in the title, but it specifies that they ship version 8 in fact.. Can you tell from the specs listed if it is safe? I could not see what the version was in that review. Which version is it? Maybe I can still find that version.

EDIT: I just found this: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/38571

anyone know about the Efest Xsmart?? is that safe? I found this, but I don't know what any of these curves mean. I am a logical person, but I am no engineer. http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?381630-Test-Review-of-Charger-Efest-Xsmart

The Xsmart looks safe.

If you're not good with the tables and graphs, most of our reviewers (including HKJ) write a brief summary at the end of each review.
 
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jaross

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Thanks for the info!

My charger says output 9v 1.57A or 5v 2A. My phone is a Samsung S6 and it has a fast charging capability, but it disables fast charging when connected to a power source that is not capable. It sounds like it would be slow, but in an emergency, it would get me enough juce to make a short call or send a few txts...

On that note, I suspect that I should avoid fast charging as it would be bad for the battery, long term. Can anyone comment on that?

The problem with the version 7.1 ML-102 is not when you use it to power another device, but when you put a battery in it and charge the battery up.

Oh, well then I have nothing to worry about! I would use it very rarely and only to charge my phone (I have not needed to charge my phone on-the-go, but someday I may). I wanted something I could use the same battery that I use in my Zebralight in case of an emergency. I charge the 18650s for my Zebralight regularly on my Intellecharger, so they would not get charged on my ML-102. Having a separate power bank defeats the purpose of a mobile backup battery for me because I would have to remember to charge that and it would be one extra thing to carry around.
 

SilverFox

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Hello Phlogiston,

Thanks for pointing out the newer review of that charger. I missed that.

Until we see an improvement in the version 8 charger I will go along with HKJ comments on not recommending the ML-102 charger, even if you are around to pull the call when it reaches full charge. If further testing verifies that the newer versions don't overcharge then it may be well worth looking at.

I am still using the Pila charger from many years ago.

Tom
 

ForrestChump

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Oct 20, 2014
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anyone know about the Efest Xsmart?? is that safe? I found this, but I don't know what any of these curves mean. I am a logical person, but I am no engineer. http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?381630-Test-Review-of-Charger-Efest-Xsmart
I actually just posted in that thread. Im very interested in this charger as well. The review is excellent, but like the OP... you throw up graphs and you can call me ForrestChump. HJK seems to think it's a good charger, so thats definitely sound, trusted, data. I just don't see a lot of feedback from CPF'rs on using it long term... Im looking for reliability with all the functions intact after many uses.
 
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