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Thread: Rechargable Alkalines

  1. #1
    Flashaholic
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    Default Rechargable Alkalines

    Are the rayovac rechargable batteries any good for LED flashlights?
    Just wondering as that would probably be more cost effective in the long run.
    BTW, I would mainly use these on a 18LED light AA light and a AAA LS.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* MrAl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    The rechargable alkalines have one
    advantage over the rechargable NiCd's and
    the newer NiMH batteries:
    They dont have that aweful self discharge
    problem.
    This is about the only advantage you can
    find. The alkalines dont discharge even
    after a fairly long time, so if you have
    an application that has to have a battery
    that cant be recharged often, you might
    wish to consider using a rechargable
    alkaline. They dont recharge as many times
    as a NiCd or NiMH cell either. Maybe
    about 10 to 20 times depending on how
    low you let the voltage get before recharging.
    NiCd's recharge about 500 times or more.
    So you have to decide for whatever
    application you might have.

    --Al

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    Good points, Mr.Al
    In using Rayo. Renewals for 5-6 years, I've found that if I use them only down to about 50%, they will recharge very well for 50-70 good recharges. As you've said, they're particularly effective with
    lighter drains like LEDs.

    In my 2 years or so of using the Nimh cells I have not found their self-discharge too much of a problem. -It should be remembered that these cells only lose a % of their remaining charge each day, (a LOT like radio-isotopes do). This was pointed out by CPF member "battery guy" a while back. As an example, I have used NimH AAAs in my UKE Keyring light, and the batteries still had a respectable amount of power after having been carried in my pocket after more than 10 months without recharge. [img]images/icons/shocked.gif[/img]
    -So, as self-discharge does progress, the losses get proportionately smaller as time goes on.....
    But, as you know, all rechargeables (except rech.alks) are sure a poor choice for emergency flashlights that only get used occasionally.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by videocal:
    As an example, I have used NimH AAAs in my UKE Keyring light, and the batteries still had a respectable amount of power after having been carried in my pocket after more than 10 months without recharge<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Carrying in your pocket makes it worse as they stay at higher temp as ambient (at least around here). So ourside it should be even less of a problem.
    But cells are different and older cells have a much higher self discharge.
    Even 'rechargeable' alkalines have a higher self discharge compared with normal alkalines.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    So are rechargable Alkalines comparable to normal Alkalines?
    As in burn time for LED flashlights.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Elmie:
    So are rechargeable Alkaline comparable to normal Alkaline?
    As in burn time for LED flashlights.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Their capacity drops with each charge/discharge cycle, but even the first cycle has less capacity than a standard alkaline.

    Rechargeable alkaline's tendency to leak or explode seem higher than almost any other type of battery- use at your own risk!

    Link to previous CPF thread on batteries.

    Peter

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* MrAl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    That's an interesting link to that thread
    on batteries.

    I have read that the NiMH cells have twice
    the self discharge as the NiCd's. Now
    maybe this isnt that much when the cell is
    brand new, but once the cell gets older
    it becomes a pain because the batteries
    need recharging every month :-)

    I'll have to pick up a set of the NiMH cells
    one of these days and see for myself. So
    far every place i have found them they were
    overpriced. I'll wait till i find them for
    a decent price first.

    Also, in that thread and other places on the
    web i have read what i always suspected, but
    never tested for myself: that the price
    of the battery when weighed with the run time
    in a given application means
    'all batteries were created equal' :-)
    except in the case where high current
    is required, such as in digital cameras.

    This means the cheaper the battery, the more
    cost effective, as you can simply replace
    the battery with another cheap one and get
    more run time then one expensive one.
    Another interesting note is if you look
    on the Energizer site and compare their
    AA batteries, they spec the e^squared battery
    to have less Ah capacity then the old
    standard energizer! Yet you will have to
    pay more for this one. Supposedly they can
    put out higher current pulses like in
    digital camera apps. Anyone try this?
    Luckily, with low current LED draw we dont
    have to worry about high currents.

    --Al

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    No particular opinion here, only "food for thought", since NimH and rech. alkalines each do their own jobs pretty well.
    I've seen recently 1200-1400 mAh NimH cells in surplus catalogs selling for as little as .75 ea [img]images/icons/rolleyes.gif[/img]
    On the other hand, even on eBay, the Grandcell alk. rechargeables are going for about a dollar ea [img]images/icons/tongue.gif[/img]

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* MrAl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by videocal:
    No particular opinion here, only "food for thought", since NimH and rech. alkalines each do their own jobs pretty well.
    I've seen recently 1200-1400 mAh NimH cells in surplus catalogs selling for as little as .75 ea [img]images/icons/rolleyes.gif[/img]
    On the other hand, even on eBay, the Grandcell alk. rechargeables are going for about a dollar ea [img]images/icons/tongue.gif[/img]
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    Oh those prices sound very good, do you think
    these bargain rechargable batteries are
    going to work decently?
    I mean, since i havent ever tryed the NiMH
    cells yet, the first set i get will
    determine if i use them again. That is,
    if they work decently then ill probably get
    more in the future. Do you think it would
    be a good idea to get these as a first set?

    --Al

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    This is slightly off topic here, but here goes...

    I keep a 2-D and a 3-D mag in my van, as well as a 4-AAA energizer, and the Brinkman LL-LED. I can put in brand-new batteries, and not touch the lights. After a few months, the mags just barely glow. I heard that heat can kill batteries. Since I live in Florida (cassette tapes have melted in my car), this seems reasonable. Do lithiums avoid this problem????

    Also, I heard from an employee of a battery company that batteries ONLY leak if they are completely exhausted. This is why batteries never seem to leak in their packages, but almost-dead batteries will spill goo all over the drawer or device. I don't know exactly why, but my experience seems to confirm this.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by MrAl:

    Oh those prices sound very good, do you think
    these bargain rechargable batteries are
    going to work decently?
    I mean, since i havent ever tryed the NiMH
    cells yet, the first set i get will
    determine if i use them again. That is,
    if they work decently then ill probably get
    more in the future. Do you think it would
    be a good idea to get these as a first set?

    --Al
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    The Nimhs (new, but at heavy discount) were Sanyo, Toshiba, Duracell Panasonic etc. and they have performed extremely well. I guess I like 'em because they can be "topped off" and used under pretty high drains with no problems.
    Recommended sources are B.G. Micro, Hosfelt, Thomas Dist. Sunn, etc.

    Imho, NimHs, coupled with pulse/smart charging, are the best bet for a lot of applications and they do allow me to go about doing other interesting things, without worrying about batteries or recharging anymore. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img] [img]images/icons/cool.gif[/img]
    Example: 2-1800mAh AAs can be properly charged in 90min. or so
    [img]images/icons/shocked.gif[/img]
    -How drastically things have changed in the last 5 years-from 500mA Ncds., memory effect and 12hr."dumb" [img]images/icons/frown.gif[/img] charging!

  12. #12
    *Flashaholic* Brock's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rechargable Alkalines

    Yes, lithiums are pretty durable. They work at hot and cold temps without much of an issue. They also have over 5 times the shelf life of alkaline batteries.

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