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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So... battery has less than 1v when I hooked up the multimeter so figured try recharging it before running out to buy a new one.

I was about to stick my regular car battery charger up to it then decided to check online first... seeing stuff about refilling with acid, refilling with distilled water, and buying a motorcycle specific battery charger because of the amps. Didn't know there was one specific to bikes.

Do I need to do all that? or can I hook up the 6v/12v car charger? maybe set at 6v so doesn't over charge but enough to see if the battery is worth saving?

Battery says YB14L-A2
 

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So... battery has less than 1v when I hooked up the multimeter so figured try recharging it before running out to buy a new one.

I was about to stick my regular car battery charger up to it then decided to check online first... seeing stuff about refilling with acid, refilling with distilled water, and buying a motorcycle specific battery charger because of the amps. Didn't know there was one specific to bikes.

Do I need to do all that? or can I hook up the 6v/12v car charger? maybe set at 6v so doesn't over charge but enough to see if the battery is worth saving?

Battery says YB14L-A2
If it was less that 1 volt, it's been left far too long uncharged and most likely it's sulphated and cannot be charged again. I wouldn't waste any more time trying to charge it, it's had it, so buy a new one.
Car chargers have too high a charge rate for bike batteries which are a lot smaller than car batteries. If it's a 12v battery, use the 12v not 6v setting on the charger, once you've also bought what's commonly called a 'battery tender'.
 

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Use any charger if you want to try and recover it., on the proviso that you do not charge it at more than 2amp rate - or you will kill it further than it already is.

Check the water level in each cell before you start - or top them off to cover the plates. keep the cells open while charging and don't put your head over the top of it to look inside.

Only use the 12v setting....

you need to charge it slowly - and if it does accept charge then leave it on for a few days - won't hurt it - just keep checking the level in each cell - and hopefully you might be able to recover it.

then get it load tested...
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
More work on these small batteries than the car. :D

I think we have just the 6 or 12v option, no option for amps.

Eventually I want to remove the air box, use pods and hide the battery and such. I hear you can get smaller batteries, like 1/5th the weight and 1/2 the size., Lithium I think... but read a few people say that they cause other issues. Are they worth getting? What issues could they be causing? The ability to lay sideways and hide to me sound pretty appealing.
 

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Use the 12v option only. - amps is how much current the battery will accept - yours is a 14AH (A=amp H=hour).
Your battery shouldn't be charged normally at a greater rate than 1.4AH - or the charger could boil your battery - which will damage its ability to hold charge. Up to 2AH is fine - but anything greater will cause damage.

I have no experience with lithium ion batteries, but do have experience with AGM/deep cycle batteries - I like the AGM as you can put them in any position to suit. - but they are not lightweight. Really how much weight do you think to gain - and to what benefit?
 

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Some of the high dollar chargers will still charge the near dead batteries, but cheapos and trickle chargers usually do not have that ability. There is a trick where you hook up a second 12 volt battery to where it allows some of the charge to bleed off from one battery to the other. I'm sure you can google it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hmm... if I had a 2nd 12v battery, I'd just use it. :D

Lithium wise I could care less about the weight, more interested in the size and being able to mount on an angle... being 1/5 the weight is just a bonus.
 

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I have the ballistic 8 cell lithium battery on my daily runner. Been using it for 3 years now and haven't had any problems. But you gotta know the limits of that chemistry. Forget cold crank and starting from a cold battery. It'll take a few cranks to warm it up in cold weather and get full power. I have it on a disconnect and pocket it when I go into work. Keeps it warm for those frigid days. (10'C or lower)

Upside is it doesn't need a tender. Had the CX parked for almost 2 years and didn't lose a charge. Fired the engine right up. Was originally going to use it for a cafe racer build due to the small size. Hide it under the rear seat cowl. If you can afford it, I say get one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just moved from Cambridge just over a year ago. :D

Not sure how much driving I'd do in the -10 range, but the disconnect makes sense.

Problem wise, I have no idea what they would have been... just a passing mention here and there like 'but they have their own set of problems' and absolutely no indication of what they are.

Are there certain brands to steer clear of?
 

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if you use your bike in the early spring or late in the fall i would not use a lithium battery ever again

i ride year round so mornings and evenings can be just below freezing at that state a lithium battery wont crank your bike over

with out you walking out to it and turning all the lights on and waiting 5 minutes or so for the battery to warm up enough to crank it

3 days of that and i switched out to a agm i want to go home when the work day is over not stand around
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
So, how cold is cold for these batteries? It almost sounds like a cool breeze will cause issues. :D

I was looking at the Shorai, and the Ballistic EVO2 (8-cell)... though that battery disconnect for the Ballistic is insanely priced, $50 for 2 plugs? Reading good things about the Shorai though, and +/- terminals on the correct side. Not an issue when I start to cafe racer this bike but for now it may help if the wires can reach it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
So... can anyone give me an idea about how cold is cold for these?

Seen a few posts where people say if too cold they won't start the bike, but, not seeing anything about the temperature... like anything under room temp? below 0? in which case I won't be driving anyways....
 

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Like what Murray said. Most people wouldn't be riding at those temps. I didn't use the ballistic disconnect. I got one from princessauto.

Taking the battery in with me keeps it warm so it'll start first crank and helps against joy riders. We used to have that problem around these parts. Not so much nowadays.

I lowsided my CX cus the tires didn't grip well enough at -7'C. That's when I decided to take a break.

I recommend ballistic over shorai because that's what I have. It fits perfectly in the stock position as well. With a little foamwork, that is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Ya those ballistic quick disconnects are like $45... I like the idea of them though, I've seen some with ends that match for battery chargers which seems a good idea.

Temp wise... -7C degrees, I doubt I'll be riding much. :D

Shorai FAQ
Down to about 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-7C) most users find that they can start normally on first crank. If your headlight comes on at key-ON, it is good for the batteries to flow some current before cranking in cold weather. The suggested headlight-on time before cranking depends on the temperature. If starting at 40F/5C, 30 seconds will help wake the battery and increase cranking performance. If at 0F/-17C, leave the lights on for 4~5 minutes before cranking. The result will be a better first crank, and longer battery life. If the engine fails to start on first crank, that first crank has warmed the battery, and the second attempt will be much stronger. Other accessories that can be turned on before cranking can also be used for this purpose, such as heated gear, radio, etc... Insuring that the battery is fully charged after storage also improves first-start performance in cold weather.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Debating between the Shorai and the Ballistic right now though... Ballistic seems a bit smaller in size, easier to hide and like the threaded terminals, but, for now, I just need to get the bike stared and running for a while before I customize and I think the +/- on the Ballistic 8-cell is reversed... will that cause issue does anyone know? I can flip the battery around no worries, but in terms of the pre-existing wires reaching the terminals are there any problems? I guess with the pre-existing wiring reaching for either battery...
 

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A picture is worth a thousand words. This what it an 8 cell ballistic battery looks like mounted in the stock position with stock wiring of an 81 CX500.

Vehicle Auto part Engine Car Automotive battery

No issues and no mods. Maybe I had to tug at the cables a bit, but that shouldn't be a problem. There was a comparison of the two form factors that I read a while back. I don't have the site anymore, but the gist of it was that cylindrical cells connected in a cluster are more easily managed and can displace more coulombs at a higher rate than the equivalent prismatic clusters. It however is highly dependant on the quality of the cells and the control circuit. Mostly, though prismatic cells are used mostly for their flexibility in shape and space saving features when extremely large clusters are needed. Like for running an electric bus or car. It's been a long time so I could be way off base. I welcome any corrections.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Bummer... was hoping someone would say nope, Ballistic doesn't fit... would make my decision way easier. :D

What's the Ballistic wrapped in? I know the Shorai comes with some sorta foam pads/blocks for spacers.

Also, where'd you get yours? I was looking on eBay then realized after shipping, duty, import, etc... be as much as buying in Canada even after tax. Probably take longer from eBay as well.
 

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Really though, get whichever one you want. They're both great pieces of tech and will do in a jiffy. I was talking to both sides before I bought one. Still get emails from Phuc at Shorai. I just went with the "local" guys. Ballistic Performance Components has an operation in Wisconsin. They didn't have too many distributors up here in Canada at that time, so I got it direct from the factory. I see them everywhere here now.

Dropped into Royal Distributing in Guelph and saw some. Sirius Motorsport has em too, but the 12 cell ones and they're pricier. I paid about 180 back then. Could have gotten a few wet cells for that hunk of change! :)

I don't recommend this, but they have a 4 cell one that's tiny and they only recommend it for scooters. With my carbs cleaned, 1 touch of the starter button and she's running. Could have probably gotten away with the 4 cell but was advised to get the 8 for added insurance.

They're shipped in a box with that form fitting foam packing. After some trimming, she fit well and snug.
 
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