Batteries catching fire all the damn time.

Discussion in 'MōVI M10' started by Ben Huddleston, Aug 6, 2014.

  1. Ben Huddleston

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    I've had 3 LiPos burn up on me in the last couple of months. All with normal charging/handling practices. 2 of them were practically new (4 days of use). I've kicked around the oft-discussed idea of powering everything with V-mounts since I have a gang of Endura 7's for Epic shoots, but the whole power-to-weight ratio keeps me in the LiPo game.

    I think I need a better system for transporting them, perhaps. Maybe they bump around too much in transit.

    How are you all packing and transporting your LiPos to prevent damage and combustion?

    Ben
     
  2. Tristan Twisselman

    Tristan Twisselman Active Member

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    Pelican Case. Size depends on if I'm traveling by air or by land
     
  3. Philip Lima

    Philip Lima Member

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    I've never had any issues with lipos catching fire, and I've been flying RC for years before I had the Movi or the Cinestar. I would definitely get a case that locks them in place and doesn't allow them to bump into anything during transport.
     
  4. Wolfgang Armin

    Wolfgang Armin Active Member

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  5. Ben Ruffell

    Ben Ruffell Active Member

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    95wh V Mount did not provide enough capacity for out M10 when we tested it….

    Which sucked, as we would love to be able to bypass these little LiPo monsters.
     
  6. Steve Maller

    Steve Maller UAV Grief Counselor

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    This should not happen. Maybe your charger is bad?
     
  7. James Leonzio

    James Leonzio Member

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  8. Eric De Fino

    Eric De Fino Member

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  9. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    What brand of batteries and size are you using that are burning up? This really should never happen. I haven't even had batteries catch on fire after a complete copter failure that dropped from 250 feet.
     
  10. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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    Ben: What are the circumstances under which the LiPo's caught fire? Were you charging them? Using them to power the MōVI? Or were they just in storage?

    Thanks
    Andy.
     
  11. Ben Huddleston

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    Thanks for all the responses and links. When I made the post initially, it was right after 2 batteries caught fire on one job (that I was not a part of; I let a competent friend use my MoVI). Upon further pressing, I discovered that those 2 batteries combusted due to human error. An AC evidently packed them up with the charging cables attached to the LiPos, but not attached to the charger. This of course enabled the leads to contact each other and short out.

    The first one I had burn up was odd. After it was fully charged, I unplugged it and a few minutes later noticed a wisp of smoke. The battery was swollen, so I quickly moved it out of my shop. Nothing further happened, and I still have it.

    Which prompts another question: what's the best/easiest way to safely dispose of these 3 dead soldiers?
     
  12. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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    Use a 12v automobile light bulb as a dummy load, and take them down to 0 volts -- but be advised that as the cells get down to 2 volts, there is a chance of thermal runaway and it may catch fire, so this is best done outside on a concrete pad away from anything that you value.

    Andy.
     
  13. Ben Huddleston

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    Thanks Andy. Then what, recycle them as you would any other battery?
     
  14. Andy Johnson-Laird

    Andy Johnson-Laird Administrator
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    Yes. Once they are truly down to zero volts then they are completely inert and so you can just put them in the trash.

    You will also read about dunking them in salt water -- salt water being conductive -- and you can do that but it seems like a lot more trouble than just completely discharging them with a dummy load, IMO.

    Andy.
     
  15. Garry Clarke

    Garry Clarke Member

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    I'm also having trouble with the lipo's, although thankfully no fires. But I am preplexed as to know whats going on.
    So hers my story....so far.
    I bought 4 when I ordered my M10. We've followed the instructions very closely as we've been scared of these things bursting into flames if mistreated [like Ben's incident] or not spoken to nicely.

    When not in use, the batteries are stored with approximately 75% of charge capacity. We don't do anything special with them, they just sit in a fireproof cupboard in our store room. When they go out on location they are securely packed in their own snug foam space in the big Movi case, so not possibility of banging around.

    A few months back, after the Movi and batteries had been sitting in the store for about a month without use, we pulled it out to test for a shoot. One of the batteries had completely died. Like absolutely no power registering on the voltage checkers. Tried recharging, but nothing. The remaining 3 were fine and still showing about the same voltage they did when put away. So I figured this must have just been a dud one and marked it not to be used.

    Yesterday we pulled out the gear again only to find the same thing has happened to another of the batteries. Completely dead! Another one for the scrap heap. The remaining 2 batteries are fine and working beautifully. What are we doing wrong???? Is there something I've missed???? Do these things really need to be treated with kid gloves????

    Hoping someone can shed some light on the issue.
     
  16. Garry Clarke

    Garry Clarke Member

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    Further update on my problem. One of the remaining 2 batteries has just decided to swell up and die. The battery in question was being used to power an AC7 monitor and was fitted with a voltage checker. One second the readout was 3.8 per cell and 14.8 overall then the monitor went off and on checking the voltage checker it was off......no power. So the battery had gone from 14.8 to zip in the space of 60 seconds. I'm now down to one battery and am anything but confident. To say this is frustrating is a major understatement. Any advise on whats going on anyone????????
     
  17. Gary Haynes

    Gary Haynes Administrator
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    Garry when in storage do you have a battery plugged into the MoVI?
     
  18. Ben Ruffell

    Ben Ruffell Active Member

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    Gary, four of our original batteries were not up to standard and had to be replaced. After some discussion Freefly replaced them at a 50% discount off retail.

    We have since started testing and logging our replacement batteries.

    I firmly believe that we were sold dud batteries.

    We are now using the Freefly ones when we are in hand held mode, and when we are in cold conditions or on a crane we are using larger capacity LiPo's off board.
     
  19. Garry Clarke

    Garry Clarke Member

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    Hi Gary.
    no the batteries just sit on a shelf by themselves. They don't even touch each other. I'm just at a loss to understand whats going on with them.
     
  20. Garry Clarke

    Garry Clarke Member

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    Hi Ben.
    thanks for the tip. I emailed FF support yesterday, but as yet haven't had a reply. I'm glad we don't have work booked for the Movi as my confidence has taken a beating lately. I'm actually thinking of selling the whole kit. I don't need to be worrying about potential gear failures and temperamental batteries.

    Cheers
    Garry
     

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