Author Topic: Shorai battery testing  (Read 16474 times)

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Offline Fred_Harmon_TX

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Shorai battery testing
« on: December 19, 2010, 02:50:37 pm »
I got a new battery this week from Shorai that is a Lithuim ion Iron type battery and only weighs 2.2 lbs. It is an 18 amp/hour battery instead of a 14 amp/hour battery and also has a higher CCA ratting.  According to Shorai, their battery can withstand more heat, cold, and vibration than a lead acid. I'm in the process of testing it out, and intend to write up a review when I get done. Here is a link the site.

http://www.shoraipower.com/p-155-lfx18a1-bs12.aspx

Here is what the Shorai 18 amp/hour battery looks like next to the OEM 14 amp/hour battery. It's significantly smaller in every dimension, as well as a whole lot lighter.





I got the battery installed in the bike ok. The only issue I have is that since the battery is not as tall, the positive terminal is no longer accessible without removing the battery cover plate. This also made it bit difficult to route the positive cable so it didn't interfere with getting the cover plate on. I may try to come up with a way to raise the battery up some so it sits at the same height as the OEM does. I also learned you have to be careful with the terminals, as they are not lead, and if you overtighten them, they will twist and bend out of shape.

It has no problem starting the bike and I cranked it over in 40 degrees with the bike cold soaked and it seems like it cranked a bit faster than it used to.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2010, 06:26:48 pm by Fred H »
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Offline S Smith

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2010, 03:11:26 pm »
Interesting stuff...

Just wondering if the charging characteristics of this battery is the same as other Li-ion I have used. At my last employment we developed hand held terminals that use Li-ion batteries.  IIRC, these batteries have fairly strict charging requirements, and over charging one can causes the battery to heat up, expand, and eventually vent with fire possible.

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Offline Cap'n Bob

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2010, 03:36:52 pm »
Interesting stuff...

Just wondering if the charging characteristics of this battery is the same as other Li-ion I have used. At my last employment we developed hand held terminals that use Li-ion batteries.  IIRC, these batteries have fairly strict charging requirements, and over charging one can causes the battery to heat up, expand, and eventually vent with fire possible.


Well that doesn't sound good. But I like the much lighter weight. My FJR has the battery way up high in the upper right fairing. I'm guessing the lighter weight would be noticable!  8)

Offline Necron99

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2010, 03:38:16 pm »
I believe that this is NOT Lithium Ion.  it's Lithium IRON.  LiFe (lithium ferous).  That's what their website says.

Offline S Smith

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2010, 04:01:30 pm »
I believe that this is NOT Lithium Ion.  it's Lithium IRON.  LiFe (lithium ferous).  That's what their website says.

Good catch - you are correct...  the data sheet was not very detailed and I assumed it was just a typo "Iron" instead of "Ion," especially since the OP stated...
Quote
I got a new battery this week from Shorai that is a Lithuim ion type battery

Looking at the FAQ on the Shorai web site I find that their batteries are Lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4 batt chemistry),  LFP are not prone to runaway overheating and outgassing, and do not require as strict a charge monitoring as Li-ion.
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Offline Necron99

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2010, 04:05:05 pm »
Fred is good, but the last infallible man walked the earth quite some time ago...  LOL

Does that mean I can get off the big-wheel?  LOL

I guess it did... I'm up to a trike... LOL
« Last Edit: December 19, 2010, 04:36:13 pm by Necron99 »

Offline Fred_Harmon_TX

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2010, 06:25:52 pm »
Yes it is lithium Iron, and as such will not catch fire like some other lithium batteries can do. Sorry for the typo, I'll fix it.

From what they told me, you can charge it with any standard charger, as long as it doesn't have a "desulfation mode" built into it (which sends short higher voltage spikes to the battery to break up sulfation crystals on the plates of lead acid batteries). I have had mine on a Deltran Battery tender for a couple days now in the garage with no issues. They say you don't need to put it on a charger, but I wasn't sure if it needed to be initialized with a full charge to start out, so I went ahead and connected it to one.

http://www.shoraipower.com/t-faq.aspx

Quote
Q. Can I use Lead-Acid battery charger and tenders?
A.Yes. HOWEVER, you may NOT use a charger/tender if it has an automatic "desulfation mode", which cannot be turned off. We have confirmed with Deltran, makers of the "Battery Tender" brand, that their products do NOT have a desulfation mode, and are therefore OK for use with Shorai LFX, for example. But the best possible charger/tender for Shorai LFX is the SHO-BMS01, which will be released in February of 2011. It uses the 5-pin BMS port in the LFX batteries, in order to monitor, diagnose, and balance the individual cells during charge. And it also has an optimized storage mode that will give the longest possible service life to your LFX.

Q. Should I use a battery tender?
A.The short answer is "only if you really need to". Most powersports enthusiasts have gotten used to hooking up a tender to their lead-acid batteries, all the time. Shorai LFX have much slower self-discharge than the best lead acid do (1/6 to 1/7, on average), they do not sulfate as capacity drops, and they are the ultimate "deep cycle" battery, which means that they can still crank your vehicle even if the remaining capacity is quite low. Therefore most riders will not need to use a tender at all. Even a charger or tender uses energy you have to pay for, and there is always the possibility that a charger or tender can fail in some way, so if not really needed the best practice is to not use one.
A fully charged LFX can sit for a year or more and still retain adequate starting capacity, without damaging the battery. As such, any vehicle which has no current flowing when the key is OFF should never need a tender. At most it should be charged every 6 to 18 months, depending on the average storage temperature (cool storage is much better for any battery). Many older vehicles and most dirtbike/atv fall into this category.
Newer vehicles may have a significant draw even when the key is OFF, to maintain clocks and computers, etc. In this case we expect that a few hours of riding per month will be all that is needed to avoid tending. If you know that you will go a number of weeks or months without riding, you can either attach a tender, or disconnect the negative cable from the battery.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2010, 06:34:36 pm by Fred H »
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Offline Fred_Harmon_TX

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2010, 10:40:01 pm »
Oh, and just in case you were wondering, the Shorai can be mounted in any position.

Quote
Q. Can Shorai LFX be mounted in any position, even upside down?
A.Yes. There are no liquids in the LFX batteries.
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Offline Necron99

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2010, 01:04:36 am »
I read on the site that they're shipped at 90% charge and don't need to be charged prior to use.

The last page of the installation guide says:

Shorai LFX batteries are pre-charged to approximately 90% of capacity. Therefore it is not required – nor generally recommended – that the batteries be charged before use in your vehicle. However, owners of Shorai BMS01 charger systems may use the CHARGE mode to fully top the battery, as the BMS01 will insure ideal cell balance and performance diagnostics to guarantee best performance.

Offline Wayne_Sikorski

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2010, 11:11:24 pm »
So? How's it working?
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Offline Slybones

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #10 on: December 25, 2010, 12:21:31 am »
Do they have one that is the same size as stock, that has even more capacity.  $187 ouch.
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Offline Zorlac

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #11 on: December 25, 2010, 06:05:18 am »
Too bad Texas isn't setup to do a real cold start test at say 7F.  ;D
They seem like the holy grail of batteries, I'd like to do a 10hr discharge on one to see if it actually lives up to its amp hour rating.
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Offline Necron99

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #12 on: December 25, 2010, 12:38:25 pm »
Do they have one that is the same size as stock, that has even more capacity.  $187 ouch.

You'll note that Fred got an 18 Amp/Hour battery instead of the 14 Amp/Hour that the Connie comes with... so he does have a higher capacity battery.

Offline Cap'n Bob

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #13 on: December 25, 2010, 12:48:34 pm »
Yes. An 18 amp hour is a higher capacity rated battery than the standard 14 AH battery that comes with the C14.  Just to give you an idea, I'll compare 18AH vs. 14AH.   For example, a current of 1 amp drawn from a battery for 10 hours would consume 10 Amp-hrs of charge from the battery. Fundamentally, it's a measurement of electrical charge in the battery. So the 18 AH would theoretically discharge at 1 amp per hour, for 18 hours. Where as the 14 AH battery would only last for 14 hours. Hopefully you get the idea. Hope it helps!

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Offline Wayne_Sikorski

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #14 on: January 07, 2011, 10:56:13 pm »
Updates? Pretty please... ;)
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Offline Fred_Harmon_TX

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #15 on: January 07, 2011, 11:59:59 pm »
I've been doing cold start testing this past week. Did a cold start on the Shorai on both the Wing and Concours this morning, and rode both bikes today and did multiple starts. I am seeing some voltage drop during the first start of the day on the Wing, and I pretty much expected this due to the nature of lithium batteries. It seems to help if you power on the bike for a minute or two before hitting the starter button. Lithuim batteries build up a layer on the anode that increases their internal resistance, and this layer is a bit slow to break down when the battery is cold. Drawing some current off the battery helps both warm the battery and break down the layer.

I shut the Wing down and did a second cold crank on the Wing about a three minutes after the bike had been running and it held voltage much better during cranking on the second start after it had been used once.
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Offline Zorlac

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #16 on: January 08, 2011, 01:55:01 am »
"Cold" being what ambient temp?
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Offline Fred_Harmon_TX

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #17 on: January 08, 2011, 02:22:45 am »
"Cold" being what ambient temp?

It was about 38 degrees this morning when I started both bikes, though it later got to about 68 today. They were both totally cold soaked at the time I started them.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2011, 02:26:08 am by Fred H »
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Offline Cap'n Bob

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #18 on: January 08, 2011, 08:34:45 am »
"Cold" being what ambient temp?

It was about 38 degrees this morning when I started both bikes, though it later got to about 68 today. They were both totally cold soaked at the time I started them.

I thought you said cold Fred? That sounds more like a cool test!!!  :))   Personally I think it would at least have to be below freezing to get a somewhat true cold test.   >:D

Offline Fred_Harmon_TX

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #19 on: January 08, 2011, 12:55:48 pm »
"Cold" being what ambient temp?

It was about 38 degrees this morning when I started both bikes, though it later got to about 68 today. They were both totally cold soaked at the time I started them.

I thought you said cold Fred? That sounds more like a cool test!!!  :))   Personally I think it would at least have to be below freezing to get a somewhat true cold test.   >:D

That's coming next week. It's supposed to be around 17 here Wednesday morning.

I think if this battery is going to have any issues, it's going to be when cold. I suspect simply plugging in my heated liner and turning it on for a minute or two before starting the bike will be enough to wake up the battery before hitting the starter, so it's probably going to just be a matter of adjusting my habits in cold weather a bit.
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Offline Zorlac

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #20 on: January 08, 2011, 01:42:25 pm »
Thanks Fred, an overnight soak at 17F will be a good data point for these batteries.
I'm really interested in putting one of these in my FJR, as you know how goofy a location it's in. 
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Offline Necron99

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2011, 06:19:05 pm »
NJ is a goofy location for ANYONE, but I'm not sure how it affects a motorcycle battery...   :P :P

Offline Wayne_Sikorski

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #22 on: January 08, 2011, 07:42:57 pm »
Either the bike has a high parasitic load or the OEM battery isn't all that great. I'm getting a low battery warning lately, though it does sit outside for 7-10 days between rides. Still starts.

Snow is a riding issue right now. Guess I won't be heading down to Zorlacs neck of the woods tomorrow. Polar Bear Grand Tour is heading to De Thomasi's 5 points on Sunday.

That isn't cold weather Fred, here in Jersey, thats darn near perfect.
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Offline BJ_CT

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #23 on: January 09, 2011, 02:11:35 pm »
With the stock battery, I've been able to start my bike a few times at about 20F or lower after a week sitting in a cold shed.  Nothing below 10F yet so no tests at 0F or below.  No battery tender.  Then turn on the heated seat, plug in the heated jacket liner and go riding.  Only once did I get the Low Voltage message momentariyly while it was starting.  Bike turns over with spirit so far (gotta love electronic ignition and fuel injection), not like it's in trouble at all.

I think the big advantage is obviously the greater amp-hr capacity (but don't understand yet why we need it), the lighter weight for those of us that have just come off the GP circuit, and the extra space this gives us for someplace convenient to put the fuses for all the accessories we add that are supposed to be hard wired directly to the battery (instead of the Fuzeblocks).

All that said, there's nothing quite like adding a new farkle just 'cause it's a new farkle.  If you gotta ask, you won't understand. :)) :))

Offline Cap'n Bob

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Re: Shorai battery testing
« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2011, 04:05:08 pm »
Thanks Fred, an overnight soak at 17F will be a good data point for these batteries.
I'm really interested in putting one of these in my FJR, as you know how goofy a location it's in.


Me too!