Author Topic: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests  (Read 1745 times)

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  • Offline Tazmool

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    Offline Tazmool

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    Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    on: Dec 21, 2017, 06.44 am
    Dec 21, 2017, 06.44 am
    Hello Everyone,

    Just for fun and to shed a little bit of weight from the bike, I decided to try out a light weight battery on my CT.
    After a quick search, it seems the WPS brand Featherweight battery seems to be the best bang for the buck so I got one.

    Since its winter here, and I don't intend on starting or riding the bike for a while, I decided to do some benchmark tests using a scale, volt meter, current meter and load tester to compare the original OEM lead acid battery and the new WPS lithium polymer battery.

    First off the weight,
    The OEM Lead battery weighs in at 8lbs 4.75oz
    The WPS Polymer battery weighs in at 2lbs 3.5oz

    The WPS battery is roughly 1/4 the weight of the Lead one, a savings of 6lbs 1.25oz  Not bad.

    Ratings:
    The WPS battery is rated at 310cca, vs the OEM at 230cca, so WPS is 1.35x the cranking amps of the OEM
    The WPS battery is rated at 60wh, while the OEM is about 124wh, so the OEM is more than 2.07x the capacity of the WPS

    Tests:
    OEM Free voltage:  12.7v  (=>12.6v is full charge)
    WPS free voltage:  13.0v  (manual says anything above 12.8v is full charge)

    OEM Voltage under 10 second ~100amp load, 10.7v  (passes load test)
    WPS Voltage under 10 second ~100amp load, 10.5v  (passes load test)

    OEM  Initial Current under load 97.9Amps    (current battery delivers as soon as load test is applied)
    WPS Initial Current under load 100.5Amps   (current battery delivers as soon as load test is applied)

    OEM Current after 10 seconds of load  95.6Amps
    WPS Current after 10 seconds of load  95.3Amps

    Conclusion:
    It seems the WPS battery has nearly identical performance under load as the OEM battery, which is good, especially given its weight.
    The WPS battery is supposed to have a greater number of charge cycles than the OEM lead acid one, and physically its a direct replacement for the original battery (there are two snap in plastic blocks on the bottom of the WPS to make it take up the same space as the OEM, this way the WPS battery won't flop around when installed)

    The charging of the WPS battery while in the bike is also a direct replacement of the OEM battery, meaning the WPS battery, although being a very much different chemistry and type of battery still acts the same as the OEM, the bike charges the battery normally. 

    The manual for the WPS battery does warn to use only "auto off" chargers, no old school always-on chargers.
    I'm not 100% sure how to tell when the WPS battery is fully charged, the manual states >12.8 volts, the battery is fully charged, plus there is a "check" button on the battery itself, and it shows (using 3 blue led lights) the charge state of the battery.

    From what I've read online, the WPS battery is a rapid charge and discharge battery, meaning it can deliver lots of power quickly and it can be charged quickly as well.  This should help with bike starts by providing quick and positive cranking/starts.  My tests however show that the two batteries have nearly identical performance, so I'm not sure if there will be any real world difference in cranking performance (another note on this later)

    Since the WPS capacity is 1/2 that of the OEM, it also stands to reason that the WPS battery will also last 1/2 as long when the bike is running off battery only, so don't leave your key on for too long.  I'm not sure if this will have any real-world effect on the bike.  I don't usually leave the bike's ignition on with out running the engine.

    These benchmark tests show both batteries being fairly equal in performance, however I'm not sure what the current draw is when the bike actually cranks.  The load tester I have is meant for much larger car/truck sized batteries so it may be pulling much more current than what the bike ever would.  At lower draw currents the difference between the two batteries may be more pronounced, possibly giving the WPS battery the performance advantage its supposed to have.

    Next season I'll report on the real-world use of the WPS battery, I expect it to work just fine.
    When I get the chance, I'll test the current draw of the bike when cranking, and I may devise some capacity tests for the two batteries as well.

    Tazmool




  • Offline Hartley   england

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    Offline Hartley

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #1 on: Dec 21, 2017, 07.43 am
    Dec 21, 2017, 07.43 am
    Very interesting reading Tazmool.
    Has to make you wonder why, on a bike that is criticised regularly for being over weight, a lighter battery is not standard. Ok it’s only a few pounds but over the whole  bike many small tweaks could add up to a substantial amount.

    Beginning to think you’ve become weight obsessed tho. :038:

    Just kidding, well done on the diet. :047:


  • Offline Juggler

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #2 on: Dec 21, 2017, 08.14 am
    Dec 21, 2017, 08.14 am
    Those lithiums batteries are crap at cold. CCA rating for them is fake.

    "Lithium-ion batteries are less forgiving on high rate discharges than lead-acid. Maximum discharge rates vary from manufacturer to manufacturer but all are currently under 60C. For instance given a 60C rate, an 8Ah Lithium-ion pack should be discharged at less than 480A for ten seconds at room temperature. Thirty second rates are commonly half this or less. Rates above 60C for thirty seconds or more cause serious problems.

    Today, only the best high rate lithium-ion cells can survive delivering all their energy in about 90 seconds. None can do the 30 seconds required for the BCI test cranking characterization test and therefore a BCI “CCA” or “CA” rating is not possible.

    Attempting a BCI test designed for lead acid batteries on any lithium-ion battery will destroy it in about 15 seconds. Discharging any lithium-ion battery too aggressively will cause dangerously high temperatures. Extreme internal temperature can travel through the cell and heat the electrolyte. At some point the electrolyte will boil, build pressure, and vent. When it vents the damage is permanent and the electrolyte is flammable. It is common for the electrolyte to flame once vented especially if the buss bars connecting the cells are hot."

  • Offline Tazmool

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    Offline Tazmool

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #3 on: Dec 21, 2017, 12.06 pm
    Dec 21, 2017, 12.06 pm
    Those are some pretty strong statements with zero backup or proof there Juggler,

    Fake CCA? 
    hmm...  I just did a pretty conclusive load test comparing the OEM and Lithium batteries, both performed at nearly identical levels, within a fraction of a volt and a few amps of eachother.  I did not do a single 10 second test and then call it a day.  I tested each battery several times, back to back, watching their current and voltage drops and recoveries.
    The only reason for the 10 second load test was the load tester safety limitation, I had to pause between tests to let the load tester cool off, even the heavy gauge wires were getting quite warm, both batteries remained cool to the touch. 

    I'd need to see some repeatable proof performed by a reputable source to even start thinking that Lithium batteries can't perform.  Then there is the fact that the quickest production electric vehicles on the planet use lithium batteries, so maybe there is something to the technology. 

    Plenty of people use these Lithium batteries in their bikes and have no issues.

    In the past I used a Shorai Lithium Iron battery in my Suzuki B-King and did a similar (albeit more detailed) battery comparo test (using the same test equipment)
    At normal room temperatures (summer time, air-conditioned house) both the OEM and Shorai batteries performed the same, with a slight edge going to the Shorai.  I then cooled both batteries down to -6C and repeated the tests, the Shorai then lagged the OEM slightly, but it still performed very well.  Those LiFe batteries were also said to be weak in cold weather, when used in a snowmobile maybe, I'd have to see proof, at normal motorcycle temperatures it performed just fine in my motorcycle...

    So again, lets see some real repeatable proof and cite your sources before making blanket statements...

    Tazmool

  • Offline Juggler

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #4 on: Dec 21, 2017, 12.25 pm
    Dec 21, 2017, 12.25 pm
    IEC CCA test
    Fully charge battery according to SAE J537 and cool to -18°C (0°F) for 24 hours. While at subfreezing temperature, apply a discharge current equal to the specified CCA. (310 CCA battery discharges at 310A.) To pass, the voltage must stay above 8.4V for 60 seconds.


  • Offline Tazmool

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    Offline Tazmool

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #5 on: Dec 22, 2017, 07.31 am
    Dec 22, 2017, 07.31 am
    Juggler,

    So side stepping the obvious that at -18C motorcycles are usually useless, have you performed this test on Lithium Iron or Polymer batteries yourself?
    What were the results?
    Which batteries did you use? 
    If you have not done these tests yourself, what is your reliable verifiable source to make a blanket statement that these batteries have "fake" cca ratings?
    Can you cite your sources for any of your statements?

    Which ratings are you referring to?
    A quick search shows that there is no one single standard for CCA on batteries, which one would be most applicable to motorcycle batteries?
    The one at 0C?  -18C  Other? and for how long?

    Which test was used by Yuasa and WPS to print their CCA ratings on their products?  do you know?

    R U Just...  Trolling?

    Tazmool

  • Offline Juggler

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    Offline Juggler

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #6 on: Dec 22, 2017, 07.45 am
    Dec 22, 2017, 07.45 am
    I'm just pointing out that in cold climate (around 0C) and cold storage outside - lithiun battaries will not work. They will not have enough power to crank big engines (>1000cc). It is the same story when your phone battery runs out of juice fast in the winter skiing for example. Lithium battery simply won't start my bike in the winter evening being in the cold for the most of the day, no matter if batery had 100% in the morinng.
    If you want to know more about CCA ratings for lithium start batteries go for unibat (or ultrabat - forget the exact name - red colored ones) site and dig it - you will find some very interesting reading! For example it is not possible to get CCA rating for lithium batteries - it is just a work of marketing department, etc...
    Something like this http://www.fastbikegear.co.nz/index.php?main_page=page&id=18&chapter=1

    Bikes are useless in the winter? Never heard of that (just some random images of my friend's bike and mine prevoius bike)

    Last Edit: Dec 22, 2017, 08.13 am by Juggler

  • Offline Tazmool

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    Re: Light weight battery, Lithium Polymer vs OEM Lead, benchmark tests
    Reply #7 on: Dec 22, 2017, 06.09 pm
    Dec 22, 2017, 06.09 pm
    LOL    :008:

    Juggler, you're clearly trolling.

    Ignore Juggler  "on"

    Tazmool