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  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Fleming Island, FL
    Age
    36
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    Default battery charging station idea... and other equipment organization ideas

    over time we have accumulated numerous backup lights, video lights, GoPro batteries and even a few primarys that all seem to need a charger for the removable rechargeable battery. Most of my gear is stored in the garage, but anything that is temperature sensative (neoprene, drysuits, anything with a battery) gets store in a small closet that is under our stair case and thankfully there is a little shelf with an electrical plug that makes for a nice charging station. My charging area, which used to only have 2 canister light chargers taking up space, now has multiple little chargers for all these batteries. Of course after a day of diving, you really don't want to charge one battery at a time, so it becomes a big pile of spaghetti and meatballs made up of chargers and cables.

    to simplify, I took a piece of starboard (typically used in boating applications) that I had lying around and some adhesive velcrow strips. I laid out all my chargers on the board, cut and applied the velcrow and mounted the board on the wall. Batteries can easily be popped in/out of the chargers, it is easy to trace which cord is plugged in and going to which charger, my limited space was cleared up (a bit), and if i need to travel and take chargers with me, I can simply pull them off the wall since they are velcrow attached.

    Hope this space saving idea helps.... feel free to share your ideas for equipment storage and be sure to include pictures!

    Click image for larger version

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  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Fleming Island, FL
    Age
    36
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    1,240

    Default

    BTW... the surge protector I bought came from Amazon... $18. Has 6 plugs and 2 USB. I like that the plug receptacles swivel 90 degrees.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    and YES, that is a package of diapers in the background. Talk to my wife.


  3. #3

    Default

    Holey Moley! Ditch those single 18650 chargers. You'll save so many plugs and things to remember with one of these:
    https://www.amazon.com/NITECORE-New-.../dp/B01LZGD87D

    I think this is the same one that Dive Rite sells with their lights, but if not it's very similar.

    Last edited by Jax; 09-21-2017 at 10:27 AM. Reason: Fixed Link

  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jlillest View Post
    Holey Moley! Ditch those single 18650 chargers. You'll save so many plugs and things to remember with one of these:


    I think this is the same one that Dive Rite sells with their lights, but if not it's very similar.
    The one that comes with dive rite lx20 is nice, but I am really happy with the xstar dragon vp4. It will do burn testing and gives a charge level by cell. Plus other stuff that I have not dug into yet.


  5. #5
    Administrator Forum Admin
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Georgia
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    22,070

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jlillest View Post
    Holey Moley! Ditch those single 18650 chargers. You'll save so many plugs and things to remember with one of these:


    I think this is the same one that Dive Rite sells with their lights, but if not it's very similar.
    One of what?

    Forrest Wilson (with 2 Rs)
    Any opinions are personal.
    Sump Divers

  6. #6

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  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FW View Post
    One of what?
    https://www.amazon.com/NITECORE-New-...dp/B01LZGD87D/

    The forum software apparently didn't like my link.


  8. #8

    Default

    I think Matt has done a good job organizing what he has. For me, I had a huge eye opener when I actually was able to analyze the 18650 cells that I had in my pool. I know that lots of people testify as to the low quality of the "junk" cells, but I found fairly little DATA based context. I had about 10 of the 'el cheapo' cells that all seemed to work just fine. I had used them for many dives in the 30-60m range and they easily outperformed a 3xAAA pack that was the alternate power for a Dive Rite BX-1.


    Many of the 'el cheapo' cells are overrated and re-branded and can often look a lot like the more high quality cells.


    I got this XSTAR VP4 charger several months ago and was able to test all my older 18650 cells and compare them to the new Sanyo? cells that came with my LX20.


    https://www.amazon.com/Xtar-DRAGON-P...tar+dragon+VP4


    I was surprised to find out the pathetic power levels of nearly all of my old cells. They averaged around 650mAh.. Compared to the ~3,300 mAh that my new cells tested out to.


    I love DATA and really like the ability to monitor and test all my cells on a fairly regular basis. The VP4-Dragon is a tad pricey at $85, but compared to most dive gear, that's a rounding error.


    *Just a note on battery life for back-up lights. I have noticed several occasions where a dive buddy had a back-up light turn on by mistake. You can see the glow even when in a typical pocket. I find that twist-on lights will go on from pressure if you don't have them unscrewed enough. ...So having more plenty of extra battery capacity is really a good idea.
    **I know some still protest using rechargeable cells for back-ups. I carry 1 back-up with alkaline 3xAAA in a push-button and two BX1s with 18650 that are twist. (FWIW)


  9. #9

    Default

    get one of these
    for charging some of them
    https://liionwholesale.com/collectio...nt=27297822856
    and one of these for charging the others, but also being able to test them
    https://liionwholesale.com/collectio...nt=12529659780

    Consolidates all of those down to 2, but gives you meaningful information out of both of them like battery voltage.
    If any of those batteries say "fire" on them, I'd chuck them and replace with these. Much less likely to do things like catch on fire, and as mentioned above, you may be shocked at the discrepancy between stated mAh and tested mAh
    https://liionwholesale.com/collectio...ant=1925834564

    Looks pretty slick though. I've been trying to find a good solution for mine as well but have been stuck with stuff zip tied to the edge of a milk crate


  10. #10

    Default

    There's a dude that goes by Mooch, that does battery testing as part of his job doing electronics design. Much of that design work is in power management, and as such he's got all sorts of fancy whizbang testing gizmos. Anyway, Mooch is also a vaper, some of the biggest battery geeks around because of the potential risk of blowing up batteries due to misuse, and so he put together a list of batteries that he recommends. He tests all sort of batteries from every manufacturer, and sorts out all the data into easily digestible form.

    You can find his chart here: https://www.e-cigarette-forum.com/fo...13-jpg.643937/

    Because we don't need the amp draw that some vapers do, we get the benefit of larger capacities. You can see that batteries like the LG HG2, Samsung 30Q, Sony VTC6's, etc. would all be excellent batteries for use in dive lights as they are a known quantity, a good combination of high amperage draw as well as larger capacities, and most have a button top equivalent if they're required.

    Personally I buy all my batteries from https://www.imrbatteries.com/ as there are a ton of websites that sell knock offs, QA failed re-wraps, and other less than ideal batteries.



 

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