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LiPo in a Hobby King 6ch Tx?

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#1
The batteries in my Hobby King T6A-V2 finally wore out after almost a year. But I recently started messing around with a sim that I plan on using a lot this winter, and that will drain my batteries a lot faster because I'll actually be using the Tx a lot.

The Tx takes 8 AA batteries. I thought about getting rechargeable AA batteries when I first got it, but that was a rather big investment for a hobby I was unsure of how far I'd get into. Buying rechargeable AA batteries is still a big investment and a 3cell LiPo is so much cheaper, especially since I already have a charger.

8 AA batteries are 12volts. A 3cell LiPo is 11.1volts but is usually actually more like 12 something volts. Maybe the Tx will constantly think that the batteries are almost dead, but should work.

I guess my question is to double check that volts are important, but amps aren't. So if I use any 3cell LiPo, it should work. Right? Because I have a 3cell battery laying around and worst case scenario, I end up having to buy a new Tx when I should get one anyway.

So, unless anyone sees any big concerns I will attempt a 3cell LiPo in the Hobby King 6ch and I will update this post with how it goes. I'll wait a few days for any rebuttals.
 

earthsciteach

Moderator
Moderator
#3
I'm an idiot when it comes to electronics and such, but there must be a reason why LiFe batteries are used in TX's instead of LiPos. Any info on this, anyone?
 
#5
I believe that LiFe batteries are normally used for TXs because (1) they have lower self-discharge than LiPo and and (2) are less susceptible to degradation when held at a full charge.

If you can run your TX on MiMH cells, it will run as low as 9.6 volts (8 * 1.2v) so it will certainly run on a 3S LiPo. Just be sure to discharge your LiPo to storage levels if you are not going to use your TX for a while.
 

RoyBro

Senior Member
Mentor
#6
There are LiPos that are designed for use with transmitters. They have a lower discharge rate than normal lipos.
 
#7
LiFe 3.3v per cell, so a 2s LiFe @ 6.6v nominal means less wasted potential energy wasted to 5v regulator on most radios. Although I believe lipos are MORE than safe with reasonable use, LiFe does add a bit of extra safety.
 

jetpackninja

More combat please...
Mentor
#9
...So, unless anyone sees any big concerns I will attempt a 3cell LiPo in the Hobby King 6ch and I will update this post with how it goes. I'll wait a few days for any rebuttals.
Do it.
I've done with a flysky radio that is the same as the Hobby King one.
Check the article and give me a good rating if it helps you out ;)

http://flitetest.com/articles/FlySky_TC6B_8AA_to_3S_Lipo_Conversion

I used and old park zone 1300mah battery. Just make sure you don't leave your radio on and that you charge the battery every once in a while so you don't over discharge the lipo. This is a very common mod for these radios.
Sounds like you are already on the right track.
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#10
I was going to try it with either one of two different 3cells I have laying around, and if it works fine then I'll buy a 3cell that would fit into the Tx without much alteration. And by "work fine" I mean that the battery indicator light is green and, well, that it works.

Good call on making sure the battery doesn't get too low. I'll be sure to charge the battery once in a while. I may even look into getting a low voltage alarm for it, if I can find one that doesn't wait until the battery is borderline damaged and is cheap.

Thanks for the confidence and information guys. I'll do the mods right now. Once the light on the Tx turned to an obvious orange, it quickly went down to red and quickly stopped working. I was just screwing around with a sim, but I want to start messing around with the sim again. So it would be nice to not be without a working Tx for too long.
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#11
Do it.
I've done with a flysky radio that is the same as the Hobby King one.
Check the article and give me a good rating if it helps you out ;)

http://flitetest.com/articles/FlySky_TC6B_8AA_to_3S_Lipo_Conversion

I used and old park zone 1300mah battery. Just make sure you don't leave your radio on and that you charge the battery every once in a while so you don't over discharge the lipo. This is a very common mod for these radios.
Sounds like you are already on the right track.
I gave you a 5 star rating on your article. Good tip on using the red and black wires of the balancing plug. So far I just ripped out the wires that go to the battery tray, stripped the wires, and plugged them directly into the balancing plug. Looks to be working great so I'll order a battery and then mod the Tx to fit the battery perfectly. Although, I'm tempted to just use one of my 500mah 3cell batteries because I know they'll fit into the battery tray without modification, but that seems too small. I'd rather be able to forget about the battery in the Tx for a month or two.
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#12
I gave you a 5 star rating on your article. Good tip on using the red and black wires of the balancing plug. So far I just ripped out the wires that go to the battery tray, stripped the wires, and plugged them directly into the balancing plug. Looks to be working great so I'll order a battery and then mod the Tx to fit the battery perfectly. Although, I'm tempted to just use one of my 500mah 3cell batteries because I know they'll fit into the battery tray without modification, but that seems too small. I'd rather be able to forget about the battery in the Tx for a month or two.
Here is a better solution for the replacement battery (if it will fit) and one I use in my 9X.
http://www.rcmodelreviews.com/tendollarbattery.shtml

I did make a couple of changes to mine. Since I use a balance charger to charge the new pack, I added a balance lead for charging and I can set the low voltage alarm in my firmware, so I didn't have to add the resistor.
 
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jetpackninja

More combat please...
Mentor
#13
Awesome- There are also purpose built lipos out there on the market. Most designed for transmitters also have over discharge protection built into them. Sounds like you have it working out for you. It also sounds like you may operate like me and like to recycle and reuse stuff whenever possible. Keep up the good work -Cheers
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#14
I know Radio Shack sells pins that are meant to be plugged/set into, well, plugs. The pin type, I don't know how to describe them. lol. Basically, I know Radio Shack sells pins that will go straight into the balance plug of a battery so I can just solder those onto the battery tray wires and plug each wire in individually. Seems like the cheapest and easiest way to go so I'll probably pick some up today. And I'll probably use a battery I already have for now.
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#15
So I finished it today. Except I may still buy a battery just for the Tx.

I couldn't find the pins I mentioned earlier. But I did find this for $2.50; Which isn't bad since I was at the mall anyway today.
P1240492.jpg

P1240493.jpg

The pins are crimp on, but I soldered them also because I don't trust it to stay together with only being crimped.
P1240496.jpg

The pins are a little too big, but I can still get them to slide in with a little extra force. Hopefully I don't bend the female end of the balancing plug.
P1240498.jpg

I'm using velcro to hold the battery onto the Tx externally. It's not the prettiest, but it works and was easy.
P1240499.jpg
 

xuzme720

Dedicated foam bender
Mentor
#16
You need to tape or heatshrink those bare connectors to avoid issues. All it would take is a bump up against something metal or catch the wire on something and bend them together. Poof for that battery...
 

rcspaceflight

creator of virtual planes
#17
You need to tape or heatshrink those bare connectors to avoid issues. All it would take is a bump up against something metal or catch the wire on something and bend them together. Poof for that battery...
Good call. I wasn't very worried about it because they are sticking straight out, but I know I have some heat shrink somewhere so I'll use it. Once I find it...
 

Craftydan

Hostage Taker of Quads
Moderator
Mentor
#18
If you haven't used the heatshrink yet, this is perfect for a hot glue plug.

-On a piece of metal, put down a large pool of hot glue (about 1.5 times the size of a plug)

-Gently lay the wires(plugged into the balance port) in the pool with the balance port on the edge of the pool

- while the glue is still hot, inject more glue above the pool to submerge the wires

-quicly press the glue pool with a metal ruler (or other large peice of flat metal) this will flatten the plug and soak away the heat.

-Wait for it to dry, then wait a minute longer.

Remove the metal by twisting parallel to the joint, then using a sharp knife, trim the plug to size.

This makes an exceptionally durable and professional looking plug - just don't ever plug it in backwards....