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Equipping the Bike - what's the best gear? Anything to do with the bikes equipment, saddlebags, etc. Questions on repairs and maintenance of the bike itself belong in the Brand Specific Tech Forums.
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  #1  
Old 23 Jan 2012
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Shorai batteries reliability - Suitable for overlanding?

Hi all,

I was wondering if anyone has good or bad experiences with Shorai batteries over longer trips / RTW.
How reliable are they? Any problem with cold/hot temperatures?

I am tempted by this product as it would save 3kg on my Dakar, but I do not want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere with unproven technology.

Kickaha
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Old 23 Jan 2012
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Plus one on this topic. Considering replacing the battery on my DR650 with one of these and wondering about reliability on the road..
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  #3  
Old 23 Jan 2012
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warning this is just an armchair opinion, so take with liberal pinch of salt, but I have heard once they are kaput, they are very kaput, where as an 'old fashioned' battery can be nursed when dying slowly.
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  #4  
Old 24 Jan 2012
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Personally, at the moment, I'd use an Odyssey or similar for an extended trip. The Lithium ones look like they're the future but I'd prefer there was a bit more long term usage information out there before I'd spend my money on one. Be great for us coming after you to know that they pack up after three months or whatever but not so good for you at the time. Of course they may survive plague, pestilence and the heat death of the universe but if they don't you may find it difficult to claim on the warranty if you're half a planet away from the point of purchase.
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Old 24 Jan 2012
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I bought last year(Nov), 3 Shorais for 3 bikes, and am testing them now. I really like the concept. Ring me back in 10 years and I'll fill you in on the results!!!!!!!!!!!
Allen.
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  #6  
Old 25 Jan 2012
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Shorai battery's do not employ an active battery management system port or "smart balancing modules" therefore have no facility to protect the pack against under/over voltage or maintain equal charging of each cell (cell drift). Nor do they have any facility to connect to the system CAN-BUS.

The consequence of this may lead to short life and dead battery when you least want it.

The battery will not give you more storage capacity, only the same in a smaller form and at less mass.

Good - but no cigar!
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Old 12 Feb 2012
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I've been reading a lot about the Shorai's on ADV.
From what i've read (witch was a lot in the last few days!), you get a 10% chance of receiving a faulty battery. If that's the case, they seem to have one outstanding consumer support service. I'd buy one, but they'r way to expensive for me.

The problem with Lithium battery's is with starting the bike in cold weather, they loose about 30% of the charging capacity, and need to be "warmed up" (not in the heating them up way!) by turning the lights on, or by trying to start the bike, so to "wake up" the battery. Check for the CCA value in the battery specs.

What about Ballistic batteries?
I'm thinking in buying a 12cell (bigger capacity then the recommended 8 cell), witch is already a upgrade to the original, and they claim it can double the lifespan of the best led based battery's.
And compared to the original it's almost a 5th of the weight!

cheers
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Old 12 Feb 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skamikazee View Post
I've been reading a lot about the Shorai's on ADV.
From what i've read (witch was a lot in the last few days!), you get a 10% chance of receiving a faulty battery. If that's the case, they seem to have one outstanding consumer support service. I'd buy one, but they'r way to expensive for me.

The problem with Lithium battery's is with starting the bike in cold weather, they loose about 30% of the charging capacity, and need to be "warmed up" (not in the heating them up way!) by turning the lights on, or by trying to start the bike, so to "wake up" the battery. Check for the CCA value in the battery specs.

What about Ballistic batteries?
I'm thinking in buying a 12cell (bigger capacity then the recommended 8 cell), witch is already a upgrade to the original, and they claim it can double the lifespan of the best led based battery's.
And compared to the original it's almost a 5th of the weight!

cheers
Same problem as the Shorai - no BMS.

Unless the vendor explicitly states their battery has a Battery Management System (I'm not talking about the separate battery charger either) then give it a swerve.

LiFPo4 batteries a smaller and lighter than equivalent lead acid or AGM batteries and that's their attraction for bikes. Save your money and buy a quality Pb/acid (or three!) and spend the saving on

If you're serious about it, fit a voltmeter to your bike and note the charge condition when you apply loads (switch on lights, heated clothes, yadda yadda...) with the engine running over ~ 2.5k rpm and if it dips below ~12.5v then you either need to shed load or invest in upgraded gen/alternator. A larger Ah battery would really just be a sticking plaster solution.
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Old 12 Feb 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fastship View Post
If you're serious about it, fit a voltmeter to your bike and note the charge condition when you apply loads (switch on lights, heated clothes, yadda yadda...) with the engine running over ~ 2.5k rpm and if it dips below ~12.5v then you either need to shed load or invest in upgraded gen/alternator. A larger Ah battery would really just be a sticking plaster solution.
Yep, that's one of my main worries.
Planning on doing a couple of big trips in the next few years on my f800GS, witch is known to have a faulty alternator. And my stock battery is scheduled to die 3 months ago .

So yeha, already ordered a Voltmeter from ebay, going to rewire the alternator, and am currently shopping for a good replacement battery. And since the battery is placed almost at the handlebars height, those 4Kg do really make an attractive vantage toward the LiFPo4, tough my decision will be mostly influenced by reliability.
So i'm really interested in knowing how many people had problems with one of those ballistic, so far i've found none.
Do you know any external BMS designed to be fitted with a LiFPo4 battery?

UPDATE: Some related interesting reading on ADV

Cheers
Sorry if my English sometimes gets confusing!
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Old 13 Feb 2012
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check this out, cell balancing unit (up to 6 cells)

I don't speak german (yet) but from what I've read seems like a pretty useful device to everyone with a LiFPo4 battery.

I'll probably end up buying a good led battery, LiFPo4 is still a very expensive solution, i'll wait until it turns into a more mainstream(affordable) market.

cheers
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  #11  
Old 13 Feb 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skamikazee View Post
check this out, cell balancing unit (up to 6 cells)

I don't speak german (yet) but from what I've read seems like a pretty useful device to everyone with a LiFPo4 battery.

I'll probably end up buying a good led battery, LiFPo4 is still a very expensive solution, i'll wait until it turns into a more mainstream(affordable) market.

cheers
energy dense batteries are well understood in the RC market, I think they were early adopters. The gadget looks useful to them, they make up their own packs which you could do too if you wished.

Really, there is no need; there are bike batteries out there, with a good BMS, well made and at reasonable prices.

i.e. for a mid weight bike: retail ~ £130
i.e. for a large bike: retail ~ £150

If there's real interest I can get hold of them.

One of the issues not discussed about these in relation to their cold weather performance is the wear and tear on the sprag clutch; when cold it can take several cranking attempts to "warm" the battery. If done constantly in cold weather (sub zero) I think on some bikes, a sticking sprag clutch would lead to early wear. Not an issue in normal temps. In cold temps I'd use Ultracapacitors.

o seu Ingles e melhor que o meu Portugues!
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Old 14 Feb 2012
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the posts so far have me leaning to a traditional lead-acid battery since I have an extended trip in mind and would prefer not to be surprised by my battery.
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