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Best charger for 18650 cells?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by FlasherZ, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    Hi all,

    I have a number of devices that use 18650 cells, but they only ever come with those horrendously slow and cheap chargers. Any recommendations on a good charger that you have experience with?

    I could play the Amazon poke-n-hope game, but would prefer to go with someone who has had experience with a good reputable unit, let me know features you like/dislike as well.

    (EDIT: plus, in case I ever need the ability to charge my Tesla on a cell-by-cell basis, I'll know which one to use. :) )
     
  2. islandbayy

    islandbayy Active Member

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    I have a great one that works awesome! when I get home I'll get you the name and model number. even tells you the Catherine's capacity. example, my junk ultra fire cells rated at 3.5 ah actually are only 950mAH, where as the laptop cells I put in take 2.5Ah.
     
  3. islandbayy

    islandbayy Active Member

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    Here we go. Sorry for delay. I have been a bit fatigued since getting back from China. my boys sleep scheduled is wayyy off, so guess who gets to stay up all night and all day while they are awake...

    Without further Ado.... Soshine Model H2-V2. Can be powered either by USB (I dont recommend, takes forever to charge, but convenient though) or power supply.
    Soshine SC H2 LCD Universal Charger for 26650 18650 16340 14500 AA AAA C Battery | eBay
    About $20 shipped from China. Got mine in about a Week. Worth it's weight in gold! Even detects battery faults and stopps charging them to prevent a Thermal Event.


    Product Descriptions:

    • Function: Soshine Universal LCD Charger for Li-ion / Ni-MH / LiFePO4 Battery
    • Feature:
      - Press the button select LiFePO4 batteries.
      - Automatic 3.7V / 1.2V battery cell voltage and polarity detection.
      - LCD displays for multi-information, battery type, voltage, time, charging percentage , charging capacity, worse battery and bad battery.
      - LCD display will automatically power off after 30 seconds to save electricity.
      - Mix charge the battery, Reverse protection, Precision end-of-charge voltage detection.
      - Over Charging timeout protection.
      - Auto alert indication for worse battery cell and bad battery cell.
      - Auto active function for Lithium battery cell open (0 Voltage).
      - Each cell can be installed different battery to charge and has a separate LCD display charging parameters.
      - Each battery can be charged simultaneously or independently.
      - With a dedicated power adapter, a convenient car charge adapter(DC 12V) and a mini USB cable(DC 5V) to charge, safe and portable, a good helper for home or travel.
    • Model: H2
    • Compatible Batteries:
      - 3.7V Li-ion Battery, such as 26650 / 18650 / 16340 batteries etc.
      - 3.2V LiFePO4 Battery, such as 26650 / 18650 / 16340 batteries etc.
      - 1.2 Ni-mh Battery, such as AA / AAA / C batteries.
       
    • DC Input Voltage: 12V 1A / 5V 2A / 6V 10W (Photovoltaic solar panel)
    • Output:
      - 1000mA x 2 @ Li-ion 3.7V battery
      - 1000mA x 2 @ Ni-MH 1.2V battery
      - 1000mA x 2 @ LiFepo4 3.2V battery
      - 8.4V, 450mA(9V Li-ion) / 300mA(9V Ni-MH)
    • Charge Mode: CC / CV (Li-ion / LiFePO4) / DELTAV(Ni-MH)
    • Standby Current: DC 5V, 10mA / DC 12V, 30mA

    • Compatible Battery Size: 34 ~ 75mm-Length, 26mm-Diameter Li-ion / Ni-MH / LiFePO4 Rechargeable Batteries.
    • Charge Methods:
      - Ni-MH battery or Li-ion battery, put in the battery, automatic identification and automatic charging.
      - LiFePo4 battery, before charging press the start button, the LCD display shows LiFeP, charger into LiFePO4 mode, put in the battery and charge.
    • Working Temperature: 0 to 55℃
    • Storage Temperature: -25 to 70℃
    • LCD Display Conditions:
      - Power On: LCD display shows 'Stby'
      - Charging Battery: Icon and levels running light up
      - Fully Charge: Battery icon all light on
      - Bad Battery: Show 'FALL''POOR CELL' @ li-ion LiFePO4
    • Color: Black
    • Product Dimensions(L x W x H): 135 x 68 x 36mm
    • Package Dimensions(L x W x H): 140 x 80 x 100mm
    • Product Weight: 116g
    • Package Weight: 357g
    • After Sales Service: 1 Year Warranty
    Package Including:

    • 1 x Battery Charger
    • 1 x Power Adapter




     
  4. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    I'll give it a try - thanks!
     
  5. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    I received mine, but it's having a problem. It charges my unprotected cells very well, but my 3000 mAh UltraFire flashlight cells just keep showing "Stby" on the display, without charging. I've confirmed that the terminals are making contact... no idea.

    Do you use UltraFire cells with these too?
     
  6. wk057

    wk057 Senior Tinkerer

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    I personally gave up on the Ultrafire cells. They never lasted me more than a handful of charge/discharge cycles and had terrible capacity no where near the label rating.

    I received this charger also but haven't had a chance to mess with it.
     
  7. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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    #7 FlasherZ, Mar 13, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2015
    Unfortunately, cells labeled "UltraFire" have been struck by the Chinese counterfeit business, with some cells labeled with up to 6000 mAh (yeah, right!). In this particular case, this is a true UltraFire cell that came with my flashlight and has measured at its true 3000 mAh capacity in the past. My other charger can "read" and charge it without a problem but this one just sticks in "Stby". I'm wondering if the protection circuit used is messing with it. The cells measure a voltage with my meter, so no idea what's happening. Perhaps I'll try to measure it while on the charger.

    EDIT: It seems that UltraFire is all pretty much crappy, and that "TrustFire" are the ones that can be genuine.

    The only other cells I happen to have are all unprotected. Guess I'll have to pick up a couple of protected cells from a reputable seller.
     
  8. rtz

    rtz Member

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  9. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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  10. FlasherZ

    FlasherZ Sig Model S + Sig Model X + Model 3 Resv

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  11. Beckler

    Beckler Member

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    I use the Nitecore chargers myself such as these:

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?Ntt=nitecore+charger&N=0&InitialSearch=yes&sts=ma&Top+Nav-Search=

    I also have some LED flashlights (18650 & other li-ion) and as with the batteries, it's the standard 'you get what you pay for'. You can get junk on ebay, lights and batteries, that look and might almost work (for a while) like the reputable stuff. Except it's total junk. :D Most all the 18650's branded with the reputable names are, to my knowledge, using Panasonic cells inside. Trust/Ultrafire aren't in that category I'm afraid. I'm not really interested in buying some trashy Li-ion cells off ebay and burning my house down.
     
  12. tga

    tga Active Member

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    For future buyers of the SoShine charger -

    The ebay seller in islandbayy's link is selling a bulk packed version of the charger (mine came in a small styrofoam box wrapped in packing tape), with the AC cord only (as mentioned in the description).

    Other sellers are including a cigarette lighter adapter and a USB power cable. Some even include a fancy printed box.

    If car charging is important, you might want to look at other sellers.

    I've run a handful of NiMH and LiIon charges without issue. The LiIon were "streamled" branded, protected cells.
     

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