Is my Power Tank dead?

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The Bat
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Is my Power Tank dead?

Post by The Bat »

I have had my Celestron Power Tank for about 4 years now, but increasingly I am noticing that it is not holding charge very well. If I plug it into the wall to recharge, the 'fully charged' light hardly ever shows any more; it's eternally 'charging'.

Connected to the telescope, it seems to be able to power the tracking motor reasonably well, but it usually starts to protest when I try to use the slewing controls (often within half an hour of setting up), and I get red or flashing lights on my handset which generally indicates low battery.

Is there anything I can do to restore life to my poor Power Tank, or am I looking at a replacement? :(

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
David Frydman
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Post by David Frydman »

Dear Rachel,
I don't know much about electrical stuff, but it sounds like the battery is nearing the end of its life.
Is it possible to replace the battery at a reasonable price?

Even the Sanyo Eneloops eventually die and camera battery lithium ion packs don't last that long either if you use them or not.

And car batteries always seem to pack up about November just when you need them most. They last about 4 to 7 years normally.

Regards, David
Gregger
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Post by Gregger »

Happened to mine 2 years ago
TBH I mainly use mine to power a digital radio (they eat batteries)
I ran the Celestron a bit low and it behaved exactly like this and died
RIP
New one in place which I try to avoid running too low
Helios Quantum 100mm bino's, Skywatcher 127mm Mak, Canon 15x50IS bino's
The Bat
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Post by The Bat »

Thanks, guys. I thought this might be the case. I was just wondering whether 4 years was a reasonable life expectancy and whether replacement batteries were available as a long shot (guess not!).

Oh well...

Cheers,

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
Brian
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Post by Brian »

Hi Rachel,

there's a thread here might have some info:

http://stargazerslounge.com/beginners-h ... -tank.html

Regards,
Brian
52.3N 0.6W
Wellingborough UK.

254mm LX90 on Superwedge, WO ZS66SD, Helios 102mm f5 on EQ1, Hunter 11x80, Pentax 10x50
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The Bat
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Post by The Bat »

Thanks for that, Brian. Could be useful.

Cheers,

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
Brian
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Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:58 pm
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Post by Brian »

Hi Rachel,

I see you know of that "Other Place" :D

Don't forget to have a look at this as well:

http://stargazerslounge.com/discussions ... tanks.html

Best regards,
Brian
52.3N 0.6W
Wellingborough UK.

254mm LX90 on Superwedge, WO ZS66SD, Helios 102mm f5 on EQ1, Hunter 11x80, Pentax 10x50
ASI120MC Toucam Pros 740k/840k/900nc mono, Pentax K110D
Ro-Ro roof shed
David Frydman
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Post by David Frydman »

One thing to note with lithium ion batteries I think that are used in cameras and laptops also toy helicopters etc. is not to leave them charging when you are out of your home..
There have been quite a number of cases of them catching fire and unfortunately burning down homes.
This mainly occurs with cheap clones of the original, but can happen with the original makers batteries. Especially with low priced consumer products made in millions normally in China. But also with top names.
At the very least they should be on a surface or in a place where nothing would happen if they caught fire.
There are literally millions of suspect chargers of various sorts again probably made in China.

I also once got a fast charger for AAs, both batteries and charger were well known brands, but the charger got so hot I disposed of it. It was frightenly hot.

For my Sanyo Eneloop AAs I use the normal faster originally supplied charger which takes about 2.5 hours. There is also the original 7 hour charger, which is probably better as Eneloops do not like fast chargers. But 7 hours is too long for me.
Even with these I try to be present when they are charging.

I dropped a charger and something inside started rattling, so I binned this and got another one.
One cannot be too careful with some of the modern high tech batteries and chargers.

regards, David
The Bat
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Post by The Bat »

Aha. Now, I didn't know that these things need recharging periodically. Nor did I know it's not a good idea to run them into the ground. I think I am guilty of both. I used to recharge religiously after every observing session, but with an increase in public observing activities and outreach events, the power tank got left in the car a lot (in the cold) to save packing/unpacking the car all the time and this seems to have been the nail in the coffin: no recharging, multiple use, cold conditions...!

This has been a useful exercise: I now know how I need to treat my replacement when I get it! :D

Thanks for all the pointers.

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
Eclipse
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Re:

Post by Eclipse »

The Bat wrote:Thanks, guys. I thought this might be the case. I was just wondering whether 4 years was a reasonable life expectancy and whether replacement batteries were available as a long shot (guess not!).

Oh well...

Cheers,

Rachel
Probably find a motorcycle battery with right Ahr to fit!
Coronado PST with SME-40 double stack H@ filter
nealeh
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Re:

Post by nealeh »

The Bat wrote:I didn't know that these things need recharging periodically.
It was my understanding that 'car battery' type power units should always be kept on charge when not in use.
Cheers,
--
Neale
Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children
The Bat
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Re: Is my Power Tank dead?

Post by The Bat »

I have bought a new power tank in the last couple of weeks and this one actually comes with instructions on the tank to recharge periodically - every 3 months in winter and monthly in summer - and not to let it drain fully. :)

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
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