The making of the BLF UC4 charger: the start of a new venture, INTEREST LIST, UPDATE 3(Finalized UI and starting design)

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Rexlion
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Mooch wrote:
RobertB wrote:
Nice to see you Mooch. Been in the e-cig forums for years. Always enjoyed your candidness with these battery manufacturers. How many years ago was the efest fiasco? lol

OMG…that Efest fiasco. Such a fail on their part.

I’m unaware, what was that about?
tatasal
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Rexlion wrote:
Mooch wrote:
RobertB wrote:
Nice to see you Mooch. Been in the e-cig forums for years. Always enjoyed your candidness with these battery manufacturers. How many years ago was the efest fiasco? lol

OMG…that Efest fiasco. Such a fail on their part.

I’m unaware, what was that about?

+ 1

Mooch
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Rexlion wrote:
I’m unaware, what was that about?

Efest had some spectacularly overrated cells that I tested and called them out on. They tried to rebut my conclusions with some technically pitiful statements and a laughable video and then tried to attack my integrity and discredit me. They had no idea how a battery rating was set.

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Mooch wrote:
Rexlion wrote:
I’m unaware, what was that about?

Efest had some spectacularly overrated cells that I tested and called them out on. They tried to rebut my conclusions with some technically pitiful statements and a laughable video and then tried to attack my integrity and discredit me. They had no idea how a battery rating was set.

And they totally miscalculated the massive backlash they received from it

raccoon city
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I remember that now!

I think that's when I learned Mooch's name.

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@BlueSwordM:

Sorry for bringing this back to attention once again but is my request from ► here ◄ reflected in the feature list? In terms of safety when charging LiFePO₄ I'd really appreciate a charger that not automatically (re)starts with a 4.20V default. So, requiring a "push button xyz to start charging" would be a nice and inexpensive add on. Smile

On a side note: Should you or the manufacturer need any help with native German language support for the manual, let me know.

Cheers,

Thomas

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I doubt a charger would restart with a different chemistry/voltage setting unless power is cycled, which is wrong anyway. Charger restart sucks butt. As an example, according to HKJ reviews LiFePO4 restart is set so high in TP5000 DIY modules (old blue, newer red) that it keeps knocking on/over the battery. 

Lux-Perpetua wrote:

On a side note: Should you or the manufacturer need any help with native German language support for the manual, let me know.

I can say the same for (Castillian) Spanish. Big Smile 

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Presuming ≈85% efficiency for the internal buck converters let me say power consumption will indeed go well above 60W peak. 24V 3A power supplies are common (and relatively cheap). 

Mooch
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Barkuti wrote:

Presuming ≈85% efficiency for the internal buck converters let me say power consumption will indeed go well above 60W peak. 24V 3A power supplies are common (and relatively cheap). 

We have to watch out for going too high in voltage though as it increases parts costs (due to their higher voltage ratings) and a higher input-to-output-voltage-ratio can be more expensive to design for. Voltage spiking from plugging an energized power supply into the charger will be more severe too and the supply’s switching duty cycle range can be limited with a high in/out voltage ratio. This limits the possible output voltage range of the supply.

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Planned input voltage range for this charger goes up to 30V, to make it compatible with industrial vehicles.

I must admit that “high current” via a standard 5.5 × 2.5mm DC plug creeps me out a bit, already seen many shoddy plugs of that class. HP's 7.4 × 5.08mm DC power connector is a lot better, imho

BlueSwordM
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@Barkuti, 30V compatibility was not made for vehicles.

It’s been made from a suggestion from a prohiminent member from SecondLifeStorage.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

Barkuti
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BlueSwordM wrote:
@Barkuti, 30V compatibility was not made for vehicles.

It's been made from a suggestion from a prohiminent member from SecondLifeStorage.

This below?

TheOnlyDocc wrote:
At BlueSwordM
I would extend the input Voltage up to ~30V. The most used PSUs have 12V and below. Above there is not much compatibility gain up to 20V. But like it was said before many Trucks use 24V and many industrial used PSUs are also 24V. Next step would be 48V but i think this will only add more costs and will not gain much options.
But to raise the possible input voltage above 24V (to be a bit more save from voltage spikes something arround 30V) would give the user much more options for PSUs and also the option to use the charger inside a Truck without any other converters.

Who cares anyway. Lets make it good.

BlueSwordM
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Not only TheOnlyDocc, but someone else I will not yet name until I post a similar thread to SecondLifeStorage.

And yeah, who cares?! It’s a great feature anyway for not only automobile users, but also 7S li-ion battery pack owners.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

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Mmm, how about centrifugal fan cooling? Sucking from above and shooting to a side, above or below. 4 small, inexpensive centrifugal fans on the floor could also work very nicely (with throttling, of course), shooting to the sides or above and below and providing redundancy. The high presure of blowers ensures airflow even if by design the chassis is a bit restrictive. 

Forever
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After reading some of the resent comments this is probably going to be something much more complicated than most people need. I think I’d be much better off with something like the DLYFULL UT4 someone posted about earlier in the thread.

Mooch
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BlueSwordM wrote:
And yeah, who cares?! It’s a great feature anyway for not only automobile users, but also 7S li-ion battery pack owners.

Oooohhh…good point!

Barkuti
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May someone explain me WTF with 7S li-ion battery pack owners? Pretty much sounds like a joke for me. 

Lagittaja
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Barkuti wrote:

Mmm, how about centrifugal fan cooling? Sucking from above and shooting to a side, above or below. 4 small, inexpensive centrifugal fans on the floor could also work very nicely (with throttling, of course), shooting to the sides or above and below and providing redundancy. The high presure of blowers ensures airflow even if by design the chassis is a bit restrictive. 

Yeah… I was thinking about that as well…
A charger doesn’t have a lot of volume available to make a large (92mm+) axial fan work.
But a single centrifugal fan would do just fine for what something like this needs. No need to complicate things with multiple fans…

——

I’m not sure what kind of form factor has been discussed but if it’s what 95% of chargers are out there then…
…with a centrifugal fan you could design a charger to be a teeny weeny bit taller such that a blower fits below the cells and it’s exhaust points towards the “top” where you have rest of the circuitry. That way the cells also get a bit of airflow because of the intake being below them.
And you don’t need to worry about ground clearance below the charger like you would do with an axial fan.

Looking at some blowers, 75mm x 15mm size is a thing. At that size the inlet is already about ~50mm wide so with a bit of clever design you can get that airflow to go past four bays.
Gdstime for example can do (almost) whatever you want. At 75×15 size they list 2500rpm all the way to 5000rpm, with starting voltage of 4V. A 2500rpm model is specified to move 10m3/h or push 9.1mmH2O.
They can make them with PWM as well, with that I guess it should be able to spin as slow as we realistically need.
Not sure if they can do hydraulic bearing blowers but at least ball bearing is an option. Not sure if I’d consider a sleeve. (Whether axial or centrifugal)

But regardless, a blower fan should be considered/should not be ruled out.
Let the designers choose what they think is the best option to achieve an efficient design.

BlueSwordM
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@Barkuti, 7S battery packs are often used with 24V inverters since they do support a larger range of voltages vs 12V inverters, so, they are much more used than 12V inverters.

@Lag, just using an 120mm axial fan at 20% fan speed would do the trick, as we don’t need a lot of static pressure to push out the air.

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

Mooch
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Barkuti wrote:

May someone explain me WTF with 7S li-ion battery pack owners? Pretty much sounds like a joke for me. 

Definitely not a joke for the DIY Powerwall community. Smile

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Lux-Perpetua wrote:

@BlueSwordM:

Sorry for bringing this back to attention once again but is my request from ► here ◄ reflected in the feature list? In terms of safety when charging LiFePO₄ I'd really appreciate a charger that not automatically (re)starts with a 4.20V default. So, requiring a "push button xyz to start charging" would be a nice and inexpensive add on. Smile

On a side note: Should you or the manufacturer need any help with native German language support for the manual, let me know.

Cheers,

Thomas

+1, no autostart would be very nice.

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Wellp, concerning the powerwall stuff I see.

With regards to centrifugal fans, one of the reasons I said what I said is due to fan's thickness (a 7575-15 fan is too small, imho, the slots' width is gonna be 100+mm). Taking (for example) a look at the Delta BFB range I don't see any big (100+mm) slim blowers. Using 4x 5050-10, 5151-15 or 6060-15 would do, though. Sort of the same goes for Adda. Of course others may know better. 

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Potentially interested.

BlueSwordM wrote:
Yeah, that’s one of the reasons why I want to stick with either using a 5,5*2,5mm DC input jack.

If we go with USB-C PD, then it would be best to make a model with an included power supply that would be more expensive, and one without.

Strong preference for USB Type-C personally.

Don’t really have many 5.5 * 2.5mm DC jacks lying around (especially not that aren’t already in active use somewhere), but I’ve got a ton of USB PD bricks, and the number is just going to grow as it sees more adoption.

If it’s DC, the charger that it has would effectively become a dedicated charger for it. With USB PD, I can plug it in all over the place.

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charwinger21 wrote:

Strong preference for USB Type-C personally.

Don't really have many 5.5 * 2.5mm DC jacks lying around (especially not that aren't already in active use somewhere), but I've got a ton of USB PD bricks, and the number is just going to grow as it sees more adoption.

I can buy standard 5.5 × 2.5mm DC power connectors cheap as chips and turn powerful unused laptop bricks into valid power supplies for this application.

All of that USB PD @#$% is an unnecessary evil here, imho. How is it going to save money? How is adding USB PD electronics plus type-C connectors gonna make this cheaper? It's quite the opposite. And not everyone has a PD supply, much less a really powerful one.

As everyone else I also am somewhat biased. But you can see the points.

With the long list of features this device is already a challenge for the price. I prefer to keep things simple.

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Barkuti wrote:

I can buy standard 5.5 × 2.5mm DC power connectors cheap as chips and turn powerful unused laptop bricks into valid power supplies for this application.

Can you use old laptop bricks? Absolutely. It’s a fantastic use for them if you still have them lying around (although, obviously they will be larger and heavier than the chargers we’re seeing hit the market now, unless you’re planning on going out and buying a new one).

Can you use new laptop bricks? Not as much. Many of them are switching to USB PD.

Barkuti wrote:

All of that USB PD @#$% is an unnecessary evil here, imho. How is it going to save money? How is adding USB PD electronics plus type-C connectors gonna make this cheaper? It’s quite the opposite.

I didn’t claim it would save money.

I said that it would make it possible to use it with USB Type-C chargers (which are relatively common at this point, and are quickly increasing in popularity, particularly in the ~60 W range with laptops moving to USB PD and new technologies like GaN chargers hitting the market).

I said that if it’s 5.5 * 2.5mm DC, for me personally it would end up being stuck on one dedicated charger (as the 5.5 * 2.5mm DC chargers that I have are in use with their devices that they came with), instead of being able to be plugged in around the house (as I have a plethora of USB PD chargers, and the number is increasing).

I also didn’t directly mention this, but USB PD is also a positive if I take it with me somewhere, as then I can just bring one USB PD charger for everything or plug in to one locally, instead of having to bring a USB PD charger and a charger for this as well.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I see why people would want 5.5 * 2.5mm DC. I just personally have a strong preference for USB PD (especially from a convenience standpoint).

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Well I have no usb pd here and lots of 5.5 * 2.5. But I am on board with usb PD. It sounds like PD is looking forward, and 5.5 is looking to the past. I always vote with moving forward toward good new tech.

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Even if you go with USB PD, couldn’t there be a 5.5 * 2.5mm barrel connector wired in parallel? Write “Do Not Connect Both At Once” on the back Smile or switch them with MOSFETs for automatic power source selection.

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Is this charger going to balance charge packs? Like an iMax B6 can?

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Barkuti wrote:

charwinger21 wrote:

Strong preference for USB Type-C personally.

Don’t really have many 5.5 * 2.5mm DC jacks lying around (especially not that aren’t already in active use somewhere), but I’ve got a ton of USB PD bricks, and the number is just going to grow as it sees more adoption.


I can buy standard 5.5 × 2.5mm DC power connectors cheap as chips and turn powerful unused laptop bricks into valid power supplies for this application.


All of that USB PD @#$% is an unnecessary evil here, imho. How is it going to save money? How is adding USB PD electronics plus type-C connectors gonna make this cheaper? It’s quite the opposite. And not everyone has a PD supply, much less a really powerful one.


As everyone else I also am somewhat biased. But you can see the points.


With the long list of features this device is already a challenge for the price. I prefer to keep things simple.


I also don’t have a powerful PD PSU.
But I am sure I will buy one at some point anyway because I believe it’s the future power socket for many devices.
I’d strongly prefer the BLF charger to be a part of this future as otherwise it will force me to lug around a dedicated PSU which is simply inconvenient.
Also, USB input would allow me to charge cells from a car outlet.
Or a bus. Or a bench. There are way more USB outlets scattered around the public places than AC ones, let alone barrel DC.
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Agro wrote:
Barkuti wrote:

charwinger21 wrote:

Strong preference for USB Type-C personally.

Don’t really have many 5.5 * 2.5mm DC jacks lying around (especially not that aren’t already in active use somewhere), but I’ve got a ton of USB PD bricks, and the number is just going to grow as it sees more adoption.


I can buy standard 5.5 × 2.5mm DC power connectors cheap as chips and turn powerful unused laptop bricks into valid power supplies for this application.


All of that USB PD @#$% is an unnecessary evil here, imho. How is it going to save money? How is adding USB PD electronics plus type-C connectors gonna make this cheaper? It’s quite the opposite. And not everyone has a PD supply, much less a really powerful one.


As everyone else I also am somewhat biased. But you can see the points.


With the long list of features this device is already a challenge for the price. I prefer to keep things simple.

I also don’t have a powerful PD PSU. But I am sure I will buy one at some point anyway because I believe it’s the future power socket for many devices. I’d strongly prefer the BLF charger to be a part of this future as otherwise it will force me to lug around a dedicated PSU which is simply inconvenient. Also, USB input would allow me to charge cells from a car outlet. Or a bus. Or a bench. There are way more USB outlets scattered around the public places than AC ones, let alone barrel DC.

Preparing for the future seems reasonable to me, especially since it’s been stated that a wider market other than solely BLF is being planned for.

@Phlogiston – “Even if you go with USB PD, couldn’t there be a 5.5 * 2.5mm barrel connector wired in parallel? Write “Do Not Connect Both At Once” on the back Smile or switch them with MOSFETs for automatic power source selection.”
Again, to me two connectors is also reasonable and a good idea, although I feel the addition of automatic power source selection is not necessary.
OG

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