Battery Blocs - - Shawn McCarty

George S.

Well-Known Member
I searched for any references to this on EBR and couldn’t find any. The product is interesting and the inventor is very dedicated.

Most flashlights have springs that keep the battery connected to the lamp. After a few years, the connection can go bad and the light can fade, or go out. Sometimes it will work again if you jiggle the spring or spray contact cleaner.

The standard cell for ebikes is the 18650. No one puts them in a spring loaded case. They are generally spot welded. There are machines that can spot weld the brick in a few minutes. The absolute best practice for soldering ebike packs may include spacers, special adhesives, fuses, and different grades of battery management boards, welded together. But a basic pack is a set of cells and a BMS in a case with some connectors.

Google sends my Android phone YouTube videos it thinks will interest me. Last week they sent me a link to a new video about Battery Blocs. I had never heard of Battery Blocs, though I do follow Shawn McCarty. He's a battery experimenter on YouTube. Apparently Shawn gets credit for inventing this system, something you have to dig around a bit to figure out. The company has too low a profile, I guess. But that's the problem with anything in the ebike sphere, it just isn't going to have any visibility.

The idea of the Battery Bloc is fairly simple. There are top pieces and bottom pieces that form the battery. There are magnets in the top/bottom pieces, and they provide structure until the thing is bolted together and then bolted down. It's easier to look at the video, for sure.

The electrical issue is hard to nail down. If you look at the pieces and how they fit together, it is clear that there is a lot of surface area, both at the terminals and at the connections. There is a long discussion on Endless Sphere. (Isn't there always?) The system is somewhat idiot proof, as long as you understand series connections and how to mount the cells in their cases.

The Battery Bloc pack is something of a screaming bargain. Shawn will sell you some of the best cells around, the 18650 Sanyo GA, for about $5-$6 including the case assembly parts. You need long threaded rods for final assembly. You can buy the cells with the case parts, one for one. Like everything, you have to check all the details, like balancing issues, cases, and chargers. If you can make your own, use RC stuff, etc, it might be simple and cheap.

There are some excerpts from a book Shawn wrote, on the website. He played with the concept a long time, getting help along the way. To prove the integrity of the system he set off on a very long ebike trip. You can find the book links on the website

www.batteryblocs.com

 
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Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
I don't share the excitement over the GA for systems over 20A but a reseller does and will argue that testing should be second to riding.
That said, pretty interesting system. I'm going to try at least a 36V, but don't share the view on a BMS. Good quality BMS coupled with a charger like the Satiator will mange a battery very well. I have the same iChargers he talks about but having the cellos and buzzers doesn't serve and old fart with hearing aids. Sometime the HA's a a nuisance riding and I turn them down to cut out wind noise that the HA programing doesn't manage. Especially at 20MPH and above. Managing 18650 packs like LiPo packs doesn't excite me. BUT that's mo reason to not try his design. I think it's one of the most exciting kit builder products I've seen this year! THANKS!!!
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
Thomas,

You have any idea if the Maker Battery will continue?

I'm OK with what Titan is doing, just making RC batteries from 18650 cells in a shrink. I got used to just connecting LiPo and charging them with the 6s limit. Probably makes 12s the limit the way I configured the packs. Carrying two light packs works well for me. I like the Luna Minis.

The RC side is so much more dynamic. There are new $50 and down chargers every month. The monitors are very sophisticated. People run the battery packs hard all the time.

If Battery Blocs caught on, it would be a huge advance for DIY battery systems. It's completely open. You can go any direction you want, charging or on the bike. I might do a 4p10s, probably two 4p5s for my RC chargers, then run them in series.
 

Thomas Jaszewski

Well-Known Member
I hope Micah takes off. BUT I think THIS is a more exciting direction. Maybe Micah can regroup and reengineer this concept.
They ought to be really cheap if mass produced. These are all printed by the seller. Getting molds made and raising funds to grow a design is a tough process from what I've seen. I'm thinking 4p modules are a good fit for me. I'm not a long range guy nor interested in the full potential of my BBSHD, as far as speed. With this system I can see myself recycling cells. But I don't see myself using my iCharger, maybe for some testing since the software IS pretty useful. But I never seem to budget in for a Windoze laptop or OS for my Apple Mac. Making that all just idle chatter.
The GA Maker Battery is for my BBS01's. I've got a problem Luna pack that got sent back to my friend and the cells, PF, are all good and this would be a way to utilize them. But budgeting projects in the winter is kind of a waste given nothing will get tested or used for 60-90 days. I have more than enough batteries. This design entices me, so maybe a few 4p packs. Or if Santa is good, some years there's a cash reward, I'll grab enough for 13s4p and I have several new BMS. Same as Luna uses. And a 20A EM3ev as well. That could be used. As well as 60 LG HG2 3000mAh cells to do something with. I wish I could get in for less than $1 a cell.