Where to buy Lithium Ion replacement batteries?

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Angelo Campanella

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Oct 28, 2003, 10:42:49 AM10/28/03
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My Sony old lap top has worn out its fair share of Lithium Ion cells. I
read an article on replacing the cells with fresh ones, referred by one
of the savants here, and I' ready to do it. Opened the most recent
deceased Sony Lion battery pack open and found three of the four Lion
pairs giving 4.2 volts OK. The fourth pair is in need of replacement.
Went to Batteries Plus around the corner, and they said "We don't do
Lithium cells; they are too dangerous". So now I ask, where can I buy
the fresh Lion cells?

Angelo Campanella

mike

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Oct 28, 2003, 2:28:07 PM10/28/03
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There is risk in replacing ANY chemistry if your cell doesn't match
the (fast) charging profile.
CHANGING ONLY SOME OF THE CELLS IN A BATTERY IS A RECIPE FOR DISASTER!
In particular, if your Lithium cells charge up at different rates,
you WILL overvoltage at least one of them. There's circuitry in
most smart batteries to shut down the system if this happens...or at
least it's supposed to.

mike


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Angelo Campanella

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Oct 28, 2003, 3:43:41 PM10/28/03
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mike wrote:


> Angelo Campanella wrote:
>> Lithium cells; they are too dangerous". So now I ask, where can I buy
>> the fresh Lion cells?

> you WILL overvoltage at least one of them. There's circuitry in
> most smart batteries to shut down the system if this happens...or at
> least it's supposed to.

Right. The associated Sony circuitry has a contact to each of the five
connections (+, 1:2, 2:3, 3:4, -), this is likely the case.

But where do I get said cells?


Angelo Campanella

Browntimdc

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Oct 28, 2003, 4:03:13 PM10/28/03
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Angelo Campanella <a.camp...@att.net> wrote in
news:1yAnb.18587$Ec1.1...@bgtnsc05-news.ops.worldnet.att.net:

DON'T TRY IT! There are many ways to hurt yourself with LiIon cells.
Leave these things to the experienced workers, which you don't appear to
be one of.

Tim

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"The strongest human instinct is to impart information,
and the second strongest is to resist it."

Kenneth Graham

Angelo Campanella

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Oct 28, 2003, 4:36:16 PM10/28/03
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Browntimdc wrote:

> Angelo Campanella <a.camp...@att.net> wrote in

>>connections (+, 1:2, 2:3, 3:4, -), this is likely the case.

> DON'T TRY IT! There are many ways to hurt yourself with LiIon cells.
> Leave these things to the experienced workers, which you don't appear to
> be one of.

Gotta start somewhere. So you say all four sets should be replaced
simultaneously? If so, then what's the next hitch?

Angelo Campanella

GB Basics

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Oct 28, 2003, 5:24:16 PM10/28/03
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>Gotta start somewhere.

Yep. Gotta start somewhere is right.

It took teams of engineers and support staff over ten years to design a working
and safe LiIon battery system.

If you have the big bucks to try to duplicate the battery industry's work, then
why not just buy a replacement battery? It'd be a lot easier and much safer.
(Unless your curiosity has surpassed logical thought.)

Glenn (GBBa...@aol.com)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
| No one is responsible for anything I say but me. |
| (And sometimes I have doubts about myself.) |
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

mike

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Oct 28, 2003, 9:00:11 PM10/28/03
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You're probably gonna have to find a place that uses 'em in some equipment
and beg a few. No (smart) company is gonna risk getting sued when
you blow yourself up just to sell a few batteries.
Even if you could buy them, in low quantities, a set of cells will cost
you about as much as a finished pack.

You want gotchas? I'll give you gotchas...
Rule number one!!! ALWAYS WEAR SAFETY GLASSES
Rule number two!!! See Rule number 1 while you still can!!

The cells fit so tightly in the pack that even a small difference
in the thickness of the plastic covering the cells can make them
not fit. Spot welding the cells is your only alternative cause
there's no room in the pack to overlap tabs and solder them.
Don't even think about soldering directly to the cells.

Cells that look the same aren't. I found out the hard way that NiMH
cells from an old cellphone won't work in a computer. They can't take
the fast charge. And you can't tell by looking. There's no part number
to lookup the specs. New cells will have a significantly higher
capacity than the battery gauge in your pack is designed to monitor.

Some protection chips "forget" when you remove the cells to replace them
and can't be reset. Others reset to a default value that may not be
appropriate for your cells.

When I rebuilt a lithium pack, I found a local surplus store that had a
bunch. I built a tester so I could match them for internal resistance
in the store. There was a BIG difference and randomly selected cells
would NOT have worked.

Then I spot welded them together into the pack. Then I replaced the
.1 ohm resistor that smoked. Then I smoked the protection chip and
had to start over with another pack.
Then I instrumented the pack with a programmable power supply and
voltmeter. I watched/graphed the charge/discharge for several days
before I got comfortable enough to put it in the computer. Comfortable
is a relative term. I would NEVER loan this machine to someone else.

So, instead of spending $45 for a battery on EBAY, I rebuilt mine for
$12 worth of surplus cells....well...then there was the cost of the
programmable power supply/load fixture/computer....and the battery tab
spot welder....and hundreds of hours over the last few years building
hardware/software to experiment with all this. Do I have to count the
cost of the battery pack I blew to smitherines when my cells couldn't
take the fast charge? I'm extremely lucky I was wearing safety glasses
when it blew up or I'd be typing this on a braille computer.

But I did save 33 bucks ;-)

mike

--
Bunch of stuff For Sale and Wanted at the link below.
laptops and parts Test Equipment
4in/400Wout ham linear amp.
Honda CB-125S
400cc Dirt Bike 2003 miles $550

John R. Copeland

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Oct 28, 2003, 9:39:30 PM10/28/03
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Splendid post, Mike.
Please re-post it from time to time, as the topic often arises.
---JRC---

"mike" <spa...@juno.com> wrote in message news:3F9F1F2B...@juno.com...
>
>
> <--snip-->
>
>
>
>
>

Angelo Campanella

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Oct 28, 2003, 11:13:39 PM10/28/03
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mike wrote:
> Angelo Campanella wrote:
>> But where do I get said cells?

> You're probably gonna have to find a place that uses 'em in some equipment
> and beg a few. No (smart) company is gonna risk getting sued when
> you blow yourself up just to sell a few batteries.

It seems that the technology of applying Lion cells is still in its
infancy. The precautions (current limits and case temperature) are not
completely implemented in everybody's mind.

> The cells fit so tightly in the pack that even a small difference
> in the thickness of the plastic covering the cells can make them
> not fit. Spot welding the cells is your only alternative cause
> there's no room in the pack to overlap tabs and solder them.

You have a point there. There is no space left inside the pack. The only
alternative is ribbon conductors.

It's less critical now than a week ago.. I bought a Thinkpad R40 to get
CDW capability, so I start fresh with a laptop that requires cheaper
batteries. The Sony is srtictly office standy stuff now.

> But I did save 33 bucks ;-)

Sony wants $250 for a replacement pack. Even aftermarket is $220

IBM Thinkpad pack is less, and has more run time.

Thanks for your inputs.

Angelo Campanella

Mark W. Lund, PhD

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Nov 1, 2003, 4:18:03 PM11/1/03
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Mike,
You need to cut and paste this excellent summary every time a newbie
asks what to him seems to be an honest and pertinent question about how
to avoid the high cost of lithium packs.
Thanks!
mark

mike wrote:


--
----------------------------------------------------------------------
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CEO ** Bulk Cells and Custom Battery Packs
PowerStream Technology ** Custom Power Supplies
140 S. Mountainway Drive ** DC/DC Converters
Orem Utah 84058 ** Custom UPS
http://www.PowerStream.com ** Custom power management electronics
Brigham Young University Alumni e-mail: lu...@xray.byu.edu

Bill Cotton

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Nov 1, 2003, 10:38:30 PM11/1/03
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Angelo Campanella <a.camp...@att.net> wrote in message news:<Z7wnb.197429$0v4.15...@bgtnsc04-news.ops.worldnet.att.net>...

http://www.photoengineering.com The web site is down at the present
time, but this company is handling Panasonic 3000 and 3600 cells for
the Lebretto computers.

Ted Edwards

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Nov 27, 2003, 4:25:25 PM11/27/03
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Mark W. Lund, PhD wrote:

> Mike,
> You need to cut and paste this excellent summary every time a newbie
> asks what to him seems to be an honest and pertinent question about how
> to avoid the high cost of lithium packs.

I'm coming in late but just found this NG. Many laptops are designed to
use either Li-ion or NiMH battery packs. Presumably the pack contacts
tell the computer which one (?). A few years ago there was a big
difference in run time between the two but "the times they are
achanging". Li-ion is still lighter weight but not smaller volume. If
your computer can take NiMH, build a pack with NiMH - cheaper, longer
cycle life and fewer gotchas.

Ted

steve

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Jan 10, 2004, 11:18:22 PM1/10/04
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"Angelo Campanella" <a.camp...@att.net> ha scritto nel messaggio
news:Z7wnb.197429$0v4.15...@bgtnsc04-news.ops.worldnet.att.net...
just to answer your main question, try: customers (at) arrows (dot) it. we
have in stock and send all EC


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