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Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

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Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  happydad on Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:33 pm

This is a warning to never mess with a swollen Lithium battery. NEVER.

I decided to relieve the puffiness from a swollen 1s 750 mAh battery. Having never read about poking a hole in the puffed battery or done it myself I stupidly poked a pin hole into the battery.
   The battery made a loud pop, then started smoking profusely. here are the results.
I dropped the battery on a table, then realized it was smoking/burning so I picked it up by the leads and ran outside and threw in on the geound.


Notice the black soot like spots


Here is the battery after the smoke stopped


Opposite side of the battery


Internals of the battery

Never ever mess with a puffed/swollen battery

stupiddad Huh... Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad!
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  TDbandit on Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:42 pm

Yup lipo's are oxygen reactive and burst into smoke and flames as soon as its introduced. Puffed packs should be allowed to cool outside and should not be charged. Some may be OK but most of the time they are damaged I've seen this happen quite a few times from crashes. (Bandit)
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  dckrsn on Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:48 pm

Yikes, H-dad!
I learned something new today. Sorry
it had to be at your expense. Glad/hope you're ok.
Bob
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  Oldenginerod on Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:54 pm

Just search "Lipo battery fire" on Youtube. Lots of examples. One of the reasons that I'm sticking with I.C. engines. The science of Lipo batteries has way too many hazards for my liking.
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  Jason_WI on Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:59 pm

I believe lithium polymer batteries have 1/4 the power density of TNT by weight. Nothing to mess with. Ever see lithium metal slivers tossed into a bucket of water? Once it hits the water the lithium reacts and fizzles around dancing on the water smoking then when enough hydrogen gas is built up it explodes. Lithium metal is silver grey in color and can be cut with a knife. It is always stored in mineral oil in a metal can so moisture in the air does not react with it.




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I'm glad it wasn't in my new quad

Post  happydad on Tue Jan 19, 2016 9:44 pm

dckrsn wrote:Yikes, H-dad!
I learned something new today. Sorry
it had to be at your expense. Glad/hope you're ok.
Bob

I'm just glad it wasn't in my new quad, the Syma X5C-1. It would have made a cool, expensive video.lol!


X5C-1

p.s. no damage here except my ego. Bleep, I'm an engineer and should have known better.

edited to add p.s.p.s.

p.s.p.s. I did know enough to not try to put out the smoke with water, or to toss the battery into the toilet.

That would have been REALLY stupid.

happydad Blow up Mad!


Last edited by happydad on Tue Jan 19, 2016 9:47 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : edit to add content)
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  pkrankow on Tue Jan 19, 2016 9:54 pm

I had some of that kind of excitement from a cross-wired battery.  I got very lucky.  The battery heated up, swelled, burst through the heat shrink (it was a 3s) about this time I got it out of the house and unplugged.  

This was pretty much way too exciting for the afternoon.  However crisis was contained at loss of one battery and a bad smell in the dining room.

I let it cool outside and mixed up a couple tablespoons of salt into water in a disposable cup.  I cut the leads away (waste not want not) and immersed the battery, which shortly started gassing off  I placed the cup on the far side of the driveway and every thing was cool in the morning.

Since the salt+water is supposed to effectively neutralize the battery contents I simply bagged the whole cup and threw it into the trash.

Phil
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  cox24711 on Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:06 am

happydad wrote:This is a warning to never mess with a swollen Lithium battery. NEVER.

I decided to relieve the puffiness from a swollen 1s 750 mAh battery. Having never read about poking a hole in the puffed battery or done it myself I stupidly poked a pin hole into the battery.
   The battery made a loud pop, then started smoking profusely. here are the results.
I dropped the battery on a table, then realized it was smoking/burning so I picked it up by the leads and ran outside and threw in on the geound.


Notice the black soot like spots


Here is the battery after the smoke stopped


Opposite side of the battery


Internals of the battery

Never ever mess with a puffed/swollen battery

stupiddad Huh... Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad! Blow up Mad!
Lithium reacts with oxygen yeah didn't you know that? (sarcasm) lol!
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  cox24711 on Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:13 am

TDbandit wrote:Yup lipo's are oxygen reactive and burst into smoke and flames as soon as its introduced. Puffed packs should be allowed to cool outside and should not be charged. Some may be OK but most of the time they are damaged I've seen this happen quite a few times from crashes. (Bandit)
NEVER BUY Lithium batteries from hobby king on the 1st charge  3 batteries that i bought from them they got super puffed! I used a swallow ac/dc charger and i did the settings that hobby king recommended and on the second charge all three of them lost a cell !i just got a refund instead of an exchange! thank god the house did not burn! down sorry i forgot what the battery was i think it was a 4s for my electric starter
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  cox24711 on Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:18 am

now only use nimh batterys (alot safer!)
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  getback on Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:07 am

WOW bet that was exciting ,,Glad you are OK I have a fear of these batteries like Greg said just stay with the nimh batterys when possible, I had a NiCad blow up years ago in a plane with Ace pulse commander in it ( still wonder what I did with that system) but it blew a big hole in the side of the plane , it scared me so bad I didn't fix the plane they were the quarter size thin style batteries . Eric Babe Bee
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  balogh on Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:58 am

Just another reason why I am anchored with IC engines and minimum dependence on unpredictable electronics...my RC birds have RX and servos fed on NiMH batteries that are simple to handle like a stone ball....
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  Kim on Wed Jan 20, 2016 10:59 am

It's only the players that get clobbered. In his late 80's, my buddy Al Painton is STILL learning about, and applying lipos...with lot's of success...in the fantastic airplanes he builds from scratch.

I've got a healthy fear of these things, though my only experience has been with the lipos and chargers included with the little helicopters and quads I mess with.

What's REALLY scary is the number of 'Goobers With Cash' who come into the hobby store 'wanting a drone'.  Totally ignoring my boss's strong suggestion that they carefully read the included directions, they later return...demanding a refund for the 'defective' quad.

My boss, Patty, has humiliated and angered several of them by setting up the quad, and flying it around in front of them...while mentioning that she's 'really not into the R/C thing'.

Redneck embarrassment aside, it's a chilling thought of how many of these potential firebombs go home with people who barely have a grasp on human hygiene!


Last edited by Kim on Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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+1 for that comment

Post  happydad on Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:28 pm

Kim wrote:It's only the players that get clobbered.

I've got a healthy fear of these things, though my only experience has been with the lipos and chargers included with the little helicopters and quads I mess with.

What's REALLY scary is the number of 'Goobers With Cash' who come into the hobby store 'wanting a drone'.  Totally ignoring my boss's strong suggestion that they carefully read the included directions, they later return...demanding a refund for the 'defective' quad.

My boss, Patty, has humiliated and angered several of them by setting up the quad, and flying it around in front of them...while mentioning that she's 'really not into the R/C thing'.

Redneck embarrassment aside, it's a chilling thought of how many of these potential firebombs go home with people who barely have a grasp on human hygiene!

Unfortunately Kim you get a +1 for that comment, because it is so true. Huh... Very Happy

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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  Kim on Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:43 pm

happydad wrote:

Unfortunately Kim you get a +1 for that comment, because it is so true. Huh... Very Happy

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Thanks HD for the 'Sad Greenie'

I edited the post...adding the sentence that was SUPPOSED to follow the first one.. guess I got distracted by my McDonalds breakfast and totally omitted it.

My buddy Al continues to investigate the newest stuff in electrics, blending it with the Old School 'birdcage construction' of the planes he flys.
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  fredvon4 on Wed Jan 20, 2016 1:55 pm

years back when I returned to leisure time and modeling I started off first with R/C cuz as a kid I was always amazed at un tethered powered flight but it was way too expensive for me

So I jumped in hard and of course the club convinced me to buy a foam trainer with electric motor and truth is I learned pretty fast with it. Of course I am a school trained safety Nazi and unlike many men, I do read and re-read all instructions before I play with a new tool or toy or home appliance

The Horizon Hobby trainer came with substantial LiPo Battery and a DUMB charger, and a LOT of warning about fire proof containers and charging time etc etc...

Well bottom line is I read up, learned, got some decent chargers, and managed to survive just fine eventually donating the craft to the club as a trainer and moved back to my C/L roots

I saw several times at the R/C field some mishap where the electric plane had, what I thought, a benign crash but instantly burst to flames and by the time we got the extinguisher and arrived was a total loss...these guys we flying some expensive 3D birds with very expensive redundant electrics....I am talking $5000~$7500 tied up in the airplane and about all that survived was the $500 electric motor

Several members decided to start using other battery chemistry and all of a sudden many were trying to get rid of their stash of LiPos and I was happy to get about a dozen Puffy large packs for free...free is good

You are scratching your head...why the hell would Fred want a bunch of puffy LiPos?

Because when you put them behind a target for a fun shoot at your friends range and have a challenge to find the right bulls eye (the only one with a LiPO behind it)  the resulting thermite Grenade reaction is spectacular...not as cool as Tannerite but pretty darned impressive


Yes Virginia.... you can shoot a LipO with OUT burning down the forest IF you, as Kim observes, have a good sense of personal hygiene


Last edited by fredvon4 on Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:00 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : to let Virginia know I am not an idiot)
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  pkrankow on Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:17 pm

fredvon4 wrote:...
You are scratching your head...why the hell would Fred want a bunch of puffy LiPos?

Because when you put them behind a target for a fun shoot at your friends range and have a challenge to find the right bulls eye (the only one with a LiPO behind it)  the resulting thermite Grenade reaction is spectacular...not as cool as Tannerite but pretty darned impressive


Yes Virginia.... you can shoot a LipO with OUT burning down the forest IF you, as Kim observes, have a good sense of personal hygiene

I am laughing so hard at this!
Phil I Love This Forum!
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  Kim on Wed Jan 20, 2016 3:56 pm

fredvon4 wrote:

Yes Virginia.... you can shoot a LipO with OUT burning down the forest IF you, as Kim

observes, have a good sense of personal hygiene

But maybe NOT...in the case of a sway-backed double wide!

Speaking of electric planes and batteries and water...check out this blast from 1967:




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I wanted to respond, but think first

Post  happydad on Wed Jan 20, 2016 5:02 pm

cox24711 wrote:
TDbandit wrote:Yup lipo's are oxygen reactive and burst into smoke and flames as soon as its introduced. Puffed packs should be allowed to cool outside and should not be charged. Some may be OK but most of the time they are damaged I've seen this happen quite a few times from crashes. (Bandit)
NEVER BUY Lithium batteries from hobby king on the 1st charge  3 batteries that i bought from them they got super puffed! I used a swallow ac/dc charger and i did the settings that hobby king recommended and on the second charge all three of them lost a cell !i just got a refund instead of an exchange! thank god the house did not burn! down sorry i forgot what the battery was i think it was a 4s for my electric starter

Greg: I wanted to respond yesterday, but think more first. Almost ALL lithium batteries are made in China, so it probably doesn't matter who the distributor is, all batteries fail. If I knew of a lithium battery source for models made in the U.S. I would purchase them.
  We are having solar panels installed on our home next week and the solar company is working with Tesla of battery powered car fame to develop new batteries to store DC energy from the solar cells during peak sun hours. Maybe they will make tiny lithium or some other new chemistry cells for RC cars some day. lol!
   My hope is by next year to purchase the special new cells Tesla develops to go completely off grid so the local electric company can stop adding little taxes and fees to my current electric bill. No connection to them and no electric bill. Huh...

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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  TDbandit on Thu Jan 21, 2016 1:37 am

The Cells are not really the problem, it's the way they are assembled. Cheap batteries use cheap solder tabs, poor spot welds and the balancing circuit a lot of times are not very good. My habit is if I'm not familiar with a battery, I charge at 1c example 3000MAh at 1c is 3 amp. Cheap batteries should be charged no higher than 1c or a little below until it is known that it will handle the charge and monitor the battery as it charges. Also don't use a cheap charger if you can, I've seen cheap chargers puff a battery even if it's set correctly. Don't drop them either, Lipo's don't take to well to dents. (Bandit)
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how about .1C to .3C

Post  happydad on Thu Jan 21, 2016 1:49 am

TDbandit wrote:The Cells are not really the problem, it's the way they are assembled. Cheap batteries use cheap solder tabs, poor spot welds and the balancing circuit a lot of times are not very good. My habit is if I'm not familiar with a battery, I charge at 1c example 3000MAh at 1c is 3 amp. Cheap batteries should be charged no higher than 1c or a little below until it is known that it will handle the charge and monitor the battery as it charges. Also don't use a cheap charger if you can, I've seen cheap chargers puff a battery even if it's set correctly. Don't drop them either, Lipo's don't take to well to dents. (Bandit)

I agree. My LiPo chargers usually charge at a .1C to .3C rate. The quadcopter in question charges at .3C and takes a couple of hours, (3) to charge a 750mAh battery.
 
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Re: Did I do that? The Dumbest thing I ever did, etc.

Post  KariFS on Thu Jan 21, 2016 2:27 am

Hey Steve, if that's the dumbest thing you've EVER done, you've done pretty well so far lol!

I'm glad the only damage was the battery itself and maybe a slight, self-fixing dent to your ego Smile

Thanks for going public with this, it's a good reminder to all of us who play with RC and other electric toys.

In our house (or garage) we have 2 1:10 RC buggies (2s 4200 mAh LiPos in both of them), my Riser has 3 3s 1100mAh LiPos, the Slow Sticks have a couple of 2s 1000mAhs (going to buy a few more soon) and I recently bought a beat-up Kyosho Calmato trainer converted to electric with two pretty big 4s batteries. And my little Nine Eagles helicopter has a couple of LiPos too, although they are about the same size as USB memory sticks... Each of the 4 smartphones in the house has a LiPo, as do all the 4 tablet devices. So the LiPos are everywhere, and since I am not going to get rid of them, I'll just have to learn to live with them.
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