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Offline Gordon3xBBB

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Hi All, back again in my new guise as "Gordon3xBBB" and feeling better about that.

I am half-way through writing up a brief history of my Motorcycling career - time will tell if I ever get it up to date.

I'm really enjoying browsing through the Forum and seeing "whassup".
Not having actually got my 2y.o. SE yet so I have nothing to report or rave about BUT at the start of my Test Ride the other day I did a quick check of the Battery Terminal Voltage using a little gizmo I made up which plugs straight into the Accessory Socket on the LHS - to give me an idea of the Battery Condition.
I'm assuming the battery is the same age as the bike so 12.5 volts at the end of a 45 minute "mixed" ride got me wondering.

According to the OHB page 147 a Battery Terminal Voltage of less than 12.7 volts indicates that it needs a charge. I already have a Smart Charger (Oxford Maximiser 3800) so can carry out that task without much trouble should I need to when I get the bike home.
 
With my other two Hinckley Trophies ('92 MkI 900 and '97 MkII 900), because they are prone to "doing a Sprag clutch" if a weak or old battery is used, I have been using a Lithium Ferro Phosphate (LiFePo4) battery, swapping the one battery between the two bikes.
It is brilliant, gives 14.2 volts at the Terminals when fully charged which comes about after any 50 mile ride. I do have the dedicated charger for it but have only used it (twice) after long sessions of electrical work with the engine off. No Sprag problems on either bike, start first time every time with a fat healthy spark at all engine revs. A weight saving of over 8 pounds is also impressive.
Not had any issues with over-heating or exploding under "me bits" in 18 months and 12,000 miles of use in all weathers. The only precaution is to use the Dedicated Charger to prevent applying too high a voltage during charging - they are limited to 15.8 volts so a de-sulphation Cycle from a Smart Charger will often exceed this value.
The Life Expectancy of these batteries is between 7 to 10 years. Cost about £175 to £200 which is not expensive given the expected life and the Cost of a TTSE, even a previously-enjoyed one

My question for the TTSE Forum is - has anybody considered the LiFePo4 option for their bikes ? A weight saving of about 14 pounds is attractive. Cold-Start performance should be in the region of 350 Amp CCA which is plenty, even for the TTSE.

Cheers
1992 Trophy 900 MkI (aka My Lady Tracey)
1997 Trophy 900 MkII (aka My Lady Sharon)
2012 Trophy SE MkIII (aka Sophie)

Offline Saaz

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2014, 11:52:05 pm »
After a ride mine sits on above 13V for quite a while, but that is measured direct at the battery terminal. While going along consistently 14.5 to 14.6v depending on how hot it is. I might just measure the voltage at the various terminals as they might under read the voltage due to voltage drop. I know that the ECU thinks the voltage is a bit less that directly at the terminals as the dealer tool reports half a volt or so lower, probably even lower when starting.

LiFePo4 looks like the way the future is heading. The weight saving is not that much considering the rest of the bike, but the performance of these batteries look good. I have had great service out of a Deka powersports fully sealed battery in my ST1100 for more than 6 years, but if the time came for a new battery a LiFePo4 may be it.

Offline w8d4it

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2014, 07:35:10 pm »
I haven't considered go to a lightweight battery merely to save weight.  The Trophy is a 700 pound.  Add 200 for the rider and you are at least 900.  14 pounds saves 1%.  Certainly I'll look to new technology to improve life/performance, though.
Proudly Riding Triumph Since 1968
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Offline Gordon3xBBB

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2014, 09:25:33 am »
I went the LiFePo4 route on my earlier Trophies for Reliability, Performance and Battery Life reasons.... Being very Top Heavy machines the much lower weight was not really noticeable.

When considering the purchase of the 2 y.o. SE I'm buying, it's Battery Condition (only 12.5 Volts at the terminals) was one of the things I looked at. Rather than experience battery related issues and have to buy a new Lead Acid replacement battery in a few months time I looked at the LiPo option. The weight gain (loss) was only a minor advantage.

I already know that the SE is so much easier to handle at Low Speed and in the Parking Lot than the two previous Hinckley incarnations from my previous Test Rides, due mainly to advances in Engine Design and the Twin-Spar frame. But the Battery in the SE is still mounted quite high, probably level with the top of the engine (?) if not higher, so I reason that a reduction in weight in that area might make things even better.

I'll keep the Forum posted as to how it all works out..

 :821:
1992 Trophy 900 MkI (aka My Lady Tracey)
1997 Trophy 900 MkII (aka My Lady Sharon)
2012 Trophy SE MkIII (aka Sophie)

Offline cropbiker

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2014, 10:07:52 am »
I have read some concerns about the life of lithium Ion batteries in cold temperatures, even in fairly mild frosts.... has anyone ever noticed anything like that or have any further experience to share?
Triumph Trophy! Not for every Tomaz, Dieter or Herman!🇬🇧

Offline Gordon3xBBB

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2014, 10:28:59 am »
To quote from the Information Sheet from the Battery I use in my older Hinckley Trophies....

"The cranking performance will be affected when environment temperature lower than -5 Degrees C"

My Trophies are kept in an attached garage where the temperature rarely drops below 2 degrees and I don't ride when the Air Temperature is that low, but I've not experienced any problems in that regard on cold weather.
1992 Trophy 900 MkI (aka My Lady Tracey)
1997 Trophy 900 MkII (aka My Lady Sharon)
2012 Trophy SE MkIII (aka Sophie)

Offline john348

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2014, 05:12:16 pm »
I use a lot of LiPo and LiIon batteries here at work and I would not want one on the bike (well between my legs).  I have one in a tracker but that is small, has a proper charger and is in the glove box.  Lithium batteries cannot be charged very quickly and if they catch fire cannot be put out  :156: Unfortunately I know from when a charger went wrong.

edit I take it all back as I have just read about lifepo4 and it says they are inherently safe.  This has now got me wondering and I will have to do more research.

You always learn lots on here  :028:

Offline Gordon3xBBB

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Re: New Username achieved, question about Battery Life and alternative
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2014, 07:29:35 pm »
Hi john348,

I knew about the hazards of LiIon batteries from my aerospace experience and would not have considered them as safe for bike use until, like you, I read about the LiFePo4 developments.
Having located and fitted a suitable battery, I attached Thermax strips to monitor the temperature and a fire-proof soldering mat on top of the battery to protect the "family jewels" - just in case...
The Battery itself has never got even warm, bearing in mind that it is "washed" by the hot air flowing back from the engine on the earlier Trophies. During one weekend last July that got to 37C or 99C in old money, but the battery was not troubled by it.
With the bikes being stored in an attached garage where it never gets below 2C so I can't vouch for it's performance at sub-zero temperatures, but I believe they are used on Snowmobiles to good effect.

I no longer use the fire-proof mat.

Having read much on the Forum this week (Old Posts) about Battery troubles with possibly the Audio Unit on the SE being mainly to blame, I shall be giving those parts a thorough going-over when I get the bike back to my base. I know the battery is over 2 years old so I'm pretty certain I shall be fitting LiFePo4 battery when finances allow..

Cheers
1992 Trophy 900 MkI (aka My Lady Tracey)
1997 Trophy 900 MkII (aka My Lady Sharon)
2012 Trophy SE MkIII (aka Sophie)

 



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