The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiasts

Batteries, Chargers, and Battery Management Systems.
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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by induna » Aug 08, 2016 10:54 pm

amberwolf wrote:I don't see any reason it wouldn't work.
Thanks, I didn't either. After reading through the thread it sounded like using the Satiator as a power supply was kind of an undocumented feature. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't over looking something obvious that could lead to problems. If I do come across any issues, I'll report back.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by tomjasz » Aug 12, 2016 10:14 am

I having a discussion on another forum about the Satiator. I've been using mine for over a year. This vendor claims the Satiator is potentially dangerous. That the wrong setting can be input, a battery plugged in, and an electrical disaster is imminent.

Some also submit,

"But to me a charger that can be used for multiple voltage batteries and uses the same connector has a drawback of being potentially dangerous if the wrong values are put in."

I'm a stroke survivor and don't cook when I'm alone. My old brain gets sidetracked. However I've managed to check my settings to charge 24, 36, 48, and 52V batteries all with one Satiator and one or another battery nearly every day. Without a disaster.

What safeguards are built in? I remember plugging my 36V into the 52V program and I think I got a flashing screen message. I'd really appreciate any feed back from other users. I find it easier to use and less risky than messing with settings in the BBS series motors controller.
Thanks Justin_le we're here thanks to you. All the best to the mods for their tireless work keeping it on an even keel.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by induna » Aug 12, 2016 12:02 pm

tomjasz wrote:I having a discussion on another forum about the Satiator. I've been using mine for over a year. This vendor claims the Satiator is potentially dangerous. That the wrong setting can be input, a battery plugged in, and an electrical disaster is imminent.

Some also submit,

"But to me a charger that can be used for multiple voltage batteries and uses the same connector has a drawback of being potentially dangerous if the wrong values are put in."

I'm a stroke survivor and don't cook when I'm alone. My old brain gets sidetracked. However I've managed to check my settings to charge 24, 36, 48, and 52V batteries all with one Satiator and one or another battery nearly every day. Without a disaster.

What safeguards are built in? I remember plugging my 36V into the 52V program and I think I got a flashing screen message. I'd really appreciate any feed back from other users. I find it easier to use and less risky than messing with settings in the BBS series motors controller.
Sorry about that. My post got whacked when my Internet went down. Others have since said everything I was going to, so...there's not much point in repeating it.
Last edited by induna on Aug 12, 2016 4:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by MrDude_1 » Aug 12, 2016 12:28 pm

tomjasz wrote:I having a discussion on another forum about the Satiator. I've been using mine for over a year. This vendor claims the Satiator is potentially dangerous. That the wrong setting can be input, a battery plugged in, and an electrical disaster is imminent.

Some also submit,

"But to me a charger that can be used for multiple voltage batteries and uses the same connector has a drawback of being potentially dangerous if the wrong values are put in."

I'm a stroke survivor and don't cook when I'm alone. My old brain gets sidetracked. However I've managed to check my settings to charge 24, 36, 48, and 52V batteries all with one Satiator and one or another battery nearly every day. Without a disaster.

What safeguards are built in? I remember plugging my 36V into the 52V program and I think I got a flashing screen message. I'd really appreciate any feed back from other users. I find it easier to use and less risky than messing with settings in the BBS series motors controller.
well im far from an expert on this device since I dont own one, but it was previously stated in this thread that the satiator will see that your 36v battery voltage is lower than the min voltage for the 52, and will not turn on unless you force it to ignore that warning.

I would also point out that there are a billion wall warts with a barrel plug, all with different voltages and polarities. You could always screw up something with one of them too.. and they wont check the voltage or the amperage.. they dont have the ability (that you may or may not use) to keep track of cell temp either..

This is a smart power supply. Most people are using dumb power supplies.
Just remember you need to be smarter than the device you are using, and plan accordingly.
Warning:This post is being read via light, a substance known to the state of California to cause cancer.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by parabellum » Aug 12, 2016 1:36 pm

tomjasz wrote:What safeguards are built in?
What safeguards are build in the fork? User could stick it in to the eyeball instead of mouth. :D
+1 to MrDude_1
MrDude_1 wrote:Just remember you need to be smarter than the device you are using, and plan accordingly.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Alan B » Aug 12, 2016 1:58 pm

There are some safeguards built into the Satiator. I don't know all of them.

There are a few ways to have a problem with the Satiator. Battery packs equipped with a functioning BMS should be protected even if a mistake is made with the Satiator.

Let's look at a few scenarios.

First off is polarity inversion, but let's assume the polarity of all your charging connectors is the same. The Satiator is probably protected against that anyway, but I've not verified that (and hopefully won't).

Next is current - some batteries may not be unable to take the full charge current of the Satiator, so even if the voltage is correct the current may be too high. Ideally the BMS will take care of this and shut down, but if not it could lead to shorter pack life and heating in the pack. It is probably not a dangerous situation unless the Satiator was used to charge a very small pack.

The most concerning area is incorrect voltage charging. If the pack is a higher voltage than the Satiator is set for then it won't attempt to charge, so no problem there.

If the pack is a lower voltage pack than the Satiator is set for then it depends on how much lower, and what settings you have set in the Satiator. If the pack voltage is much lower it won't attempt to charge it, or it will briefly charge it gently to see if it rises into the proper voltage range and then stop, which should be safe.

If the voltage is close enough that the Satiator continues to charge it, then it could be dangerous if there is not a functioning BMS.

So the situation to be aware of (and perhaps avoid) is having packs that are too close in voltage, so that one pack falls within the voltage range of another. If each pack has a nonoverlapping voltage range then things are pretty safe. 24, 36 and 48 volt packs are probably not overlapping in operating/charging voltage ranges. But 48 and 52 volt packs will overlap, so a 52 volt charge setting might try to overcharge a 48 volt pack. In this case the BMS should stop the charge safely, so you still have protection as long as the BMS is operating correctly. The Satiator was intended to work with BMS equipped packs.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by amberwolf » Aug 12, 2016 2:38 pm

FWIW, the same potential hazards exist with any other charger (one can easily mistake one silver or black box for another, if they all have the same connectors), so it is still up to the user to ensure what settings are used.

The safest way to ensure it can't be used on the wrong pack is to attache it to the vehicle the pack is on, or the pack itself, wired in permanently. But then it's not much good if you have multiple packs and was the reason you got it. ;)

The next best is to always check the settings, and to NOT set a Default profile, so that it cannot be used without selecting a profile / holding the start button.


Another reasonably safe way is ot use a different connector on each pack, and label each adapter from the XLR to that connector with that pack's identity, perhaps color matching or some other easy quick identifier, andkeep those adapters with the Satiator. And again, NOT set a Default profile.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by tomjasz » Aug 15, 2016 5:15 pm

I find it a brilliant charger, I was looking for counterpoints for the sellers of another charger with high fail rates that insists on calling the Satiator as "geeky" and potentially dangerous. It's a shame really, as I pointed out, I'm disabled and remain safe with this charger. I find the interface to be incredibly easy. One of the best purchases I made.
Thanks Justin_le we're here thanks to you. All the best to the mods for their tireless work keeping it on an even keel.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Alan B » Aug 15, 2016 5:27 pm

These are excellent chargers, reliable, programmable and give you more information about your batteries that can be helpful in keeping them healthy and safe. They have more safety features than many cheap chargers and the UL listing is a requirement for many people who are not even aware that their cheap chargers are endangering their fire insurance and their loved ones.

I'm waiting for the 72V production UL listed and sealed Satiator to add to my charger fleet. Some of my packs are out of range for the current units. PayPal is ready.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by cwah » Aug 15, 2016 5:30 pm

A perfect satiator should have a balancing board entry up to 30s.... something ebike enthusiast need and never had a change to have in the RC market.

Until then its just a fancy charger similar to what i use
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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Alan B » Aug 15, 2016 5:56 pm

Satiator is designed to work with existing BMS and charge balancing boards.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by cwah » Aug 15, 2016 6:05 pm

With an existing bms i don't need a satiator... just a simple charger with voltage adjuster is enough...
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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Alan B » Aug 15, 2016 6:58 pm

I appreciate the precision, the data collection, the memories, the PC interface, the upgradeable firmware, the UL listing, the water resistance, the lack of noisy fans. The Satiator is a good product. Other products on the market are either toy RC chargers, not UL listed, not high enough voltage, or they are commercial chargers and too large/costly/bulky for ebike use. The Satiator fits into a niche in between with very little competition at its level.

Adding a balancing board would be interesting, but it would create a much more complex interface cabling and configuration situation. I designed an 18S charger with built in balancing and it was several times as complex, and ultimately that extra complexity caused me to cancel the project. It can be done, but the increase in cost would be significant, and the market for such a product is very small. The vast majority of consumers in the ebike market have a BMS protected pack, and many of them are tired of the low quality chargers failing, or not giving them information, or not being adjustable. There are plenty of customers looking for a higher quality solution than the "cheap chargers" who have no use for a balancing board.

The balancing board could be developed as a separate product, by another vendor, it need not be part of the Satiator. It is just a half-BMS with a programmable user interface. Go for it, make one! Find others who want it and can make it if you can't.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Alan B » Oct 25, 2016 9:58 am

I received my 72V Satiator, excellent to have it and congrats on the UL listing.

A question - why does the 72V Satiator say "for indoor use only" whereas the 48V model is rated for outdoor use?

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Scottydog » Jan 17, 2017 1:20 pm

Hey guys,

So I bought a Cycle Satiator in November and has been such a cool charger so had been using it almost everyday with it permanently mounted on the electric scooter.

However around 3 weeks ago it stopped charging and when I checked out the display it would say "power fault: Restart"

Any idea what could be causing this? I have emailed Grin Technologies but not had much input on what could be causing this. I checked the firmware and it's the latest version. I do want to get it back in action as using the large plug in charger isn't so convenient. :(

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by justin_le » Jan 17, 2017 8:52 pm

Alan B wrote:I received my 72V Satiator, excellent to have it and congrats on the UL listing.

A question - why does the 72V Satiator say "for indoor use only" whereas the 48V model is rated for outdoor use?
Great question, actually the 48V device label will need to be similarly updated. This was all necessary for UL certification and doesn't reflect any change in the device. If we wanted to state that it is OK for outdoor use, then the device not only has to pass IP testing, but all of the connectors and cables need to meet a different set of pretty restrictive standards. We actually failed the IP67 testing since it has to be done after a 1 meter drop test. 2 of the 3 devices passed fine, but on one of them the 1m drop dented the bottom corner of the enclosure such that it compromised the gasket seal, and then on that one water was able to penetrate while being sprayed.

If we get a chance, we may get a rubber bumper tooled out that can fit around the 4 corners of the Satiator and then resubmit the IP67 test with this protection in place. In the meantime though, we have to state "for indoors use", even though in practice it's perfectly fine to use it outdoors and in the rain.
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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by amberwolf » Jan 18, 2017 1:08 am

The times I see Power Faults are generally when power is interrupted to teh charger from the wall, or browns out for an instant, or when charging an old Luna pack that has a BMS and the BMS cuts off the charging at certain points (doesn't happen *every* time the BMS cuts out). It doesn't do it with *all* the BMSd packs (the EM3EV pack doesnt' do this), just that one.

Happened with either the original firmware mine shipped with and the latest off the Grin site as of a few months ago.



Aside from that, I wish there was a way to use the "signal" pin on the XLR to detect (via resistance to ground?) what pack it's plugged into and automatically switch to that profie (even if it won't autostart, just switching profiles would be very helpful, especiallly when I have cold hurty fingers or am just too tired to press and hold a series of buttons; I could just do one to force start it....

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by KarlJ » Jan 20, 2017 8:22 am

interesting read.....
I run an EM3EV 14S 6P triangle pack normally charged at a low rate from my powerwall 7s60P laptop cells
and a DC-DC converter.
I have gen 1 48V version with out of the box firmware of at least 12 months ago
So why on earth do i need a $550 AUD in australia battery charger?

A) bought it from EM3 EV at much less than dillinger in AUS - if i recall correctly about $440 AUD
B) It charges the car battery (which i use only periodically as primary transport is ebike)
C) charges lifePO4 12V car battery (ev-power.com.au)
c) It charges my powerwall 7S to whatever voltage i want to balance it (solar charge controller does not)
d) it charges my camping fridge pack 7S 14P which will happily run with a panel and charge controller (72 cell) almost indefinitely.
e) Charges my frame pack (13S 4P)
e) aside from my expending into 72 V stuff it simply beats the shit out of replacing cheap shit chinese charge controllers every 2 months!

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by justin_le » Jan 21, 2017 11:02 pm

Scottydog wrote:Hey guys,
So I bought a Cycle Satiator in November and has been such a cool charger so had been using it almost everyday with it permanently mounted on the electric scooter.
However around 3 weeks ago it stopped charging and when I checked out the display it would say "power fault: Restart"
Hey scottydog, could send an updated email to info@ebikes.ca? I'm not sure which particular conversation this was but there could have been a few messages that got missed over the holidays. Anyways, the normal reason that we see this "power fault:restart" message at the end of charging is if there is a battery pack with a BMS circuit that trips before the CV portion of charging is finished. If it just trips that's fine, but if the BMS repeatedly trips and then turns on again in rapid succession, this can result in momentary surge currents that cause the power protection to kick in.

We actually have a new Rev1.015 firmware that addresses this with a different delays and soft start behavior when the BMS boards turn on again, but there were a few other tweaks we wanted to make before making it a public release. However, we can send it to you privately to try out if this is the behavior.

If you _always_ see a power fault message the moment the satiator starts charging, then that means there is a damaged component and we'd cover this with the 3 year warranty. Our goal was to have a <0.5% failure rate on the devices, but the actual number has been closer to a ~1.5% and we're working hard to understand the root cause these edge cases and refine the design to address them.
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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Scottydog » Jan 23, 2017 3:07 pm

justin_le wrote:
Hey scottydog, could send an updated email to info@ebikes.ca? I'm not sure which particular conversation this was but there could have been a few messages that got missed over the holidays. Anyways, the normal reason that we see this "power fault:restart" message at the end of charging is if there is a battery pack with a BMS circuit that trips before the CV portion of charging is finished. If it just trips that's fine, but if the BMS repeatedly trips and then turns on again in rapid succession, this can result in momentary surge currents that cause the power protection to kick in.

We actually have a new Rev1.015 firmware that addresses this with a different delays and soft start behavior when the BMS boards turn on again, but there were a few other tweaks we wanted to make before making it a public release. However, we can send it to you privately to try out if this is the behavior.

If you _always_ see a power fault message the moment the satiator starts charging, then that means there is a damaged component and we'd cover this with the 3 year warranty. Our goal was to have a <0.5% failure rate on the devices, but the actual number has been closer to a ~1.5% and we're working hard to understand the root cause these edge cases and refine the design to address them.
Hi Justin thanks for the reply, I'm the fellow who visited your shop in November and you kindly sold me your spare one.

I'll send you an email of my setup, don't think it is the BMS system as it does this right from plugging in, but I can try changing some things to see if that helps. I set to auto charge so it makes a click then a few seconds later the msg comes up. One thing that I did notice since I have had it, is once in a while the charger didn't kick in, so I got into the habit of looking at the CA to see if the minus amps were being shown before leaving the bike. Because the charger is behind the bodywork I never looked at the display, but perhaps it was doing this on occasion? It would have been maybe once every 20 charges so very rare.

I didn't realize it had a 3 year warranty, wow! I do want to get another one for a second build so will see if the update helps as it's for sure super awesome! I've been able to publicly charge all over the place! 8)

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1.015 Firmware, for those with tripping BMS "pwr fault" erro

Post by justin_le » Jan 26, 2017 4:54 am

justin_le wrote:We actually have a new Rev1.015 firmware that addresses this with a different delays and soft start behavior when the BMS boards turn on again, but there were a few other tweaks we wanted to make before making it a public release. However, we can send it to you privately to try out if this is the behavior.
OK so Scottydog I don't think this will help in your case, but for any people who've had the Satiator charging perfectly normally, but then at the end of the charge they return and see this "Pwr Fault" message on occasion, if you want to try this 1.015 firmware out and let us now if it solves the trick that would be great. It's worked so far on all the unbalanced shop LiFePO4 packs we've tested it on with this end of charge BMS tripping issue, and we've had the same feedback from those we've sent it to over email who were experiencing this at home.
Attachments
v1.015.zip
Unpack to make the v1.015.satiator firmware file
(111.97 KiB) Downloaded 21 times
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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Scottydog » Feb 04, 2017 5:20 pm

Justin, good news!

I installed the Rev1.015 firmware and as soon as it finished installing the charger started working! I've done a few cycles on it and so far no problems! Totally awesome, thanks for getting back on a solution! :D

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by pucksterpete » Feb 04, 2017 6:11 pm

Here is a short video of my Cycle Satiator 72v charger, little weirdness on the display towards the end of the charge



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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by Stealth_Rider » Feb 09, 2017 3:28 pm

pucksterpete wrote:Here is a short video of my Cycle Satiator 72v charger, little weirdness on the display towards the end of the charge

Pete
I have this same problem (23S7P Samsung 30Q Cells) with my 72-05 and brought it to the attention of Grin. I also made a video and provided it to Grin.

http://www.fareinc.com/Satiator-Kirk/72 ... y_jump.mp4

I also provided some some serial streaming debug data to Grin (using a special firmware build for the Satiator which Grin provided to me for debug). Grin has been able to reproduce the same problem you and I have in their lab. So progress is occuring.

Grin is currently working on a fix, could be software or hardware, unclear yet. However, I was told it is OK to continue to use the unit. I have found that sometimes just pushing one of the buttons refreshes the display and the garbling stops and does not return through "Charge Complete."

Aggravating, yes but a fix will be coming. I'll keep you informed by posting back as this develops further.

By the way I also have a 48-08 Satiator (charging 14S7P Samsung 30Q cells) and it does not show the garbled display problem.

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Re: The Cycle Satiator, universal charger for the enthusiast

Post by justin_le » Feb 09, 2017 10:09 pm

pucksterpete wrote:Here is a short video of my Cycle Satiator 72v charger, little weirdness on the display towards the end of the charge
Pete
Hey guys, yeah we are able to recreate this in our lab on a couple units and are trying to get to the bottom of it and figure out the best fix. The OLED noise only happens during the CV portion of the charging routine, not when it is in constant current mode, so that's why people are only noticing it and the end of charging. Since it's just a display artifact it doesn't affect the charge operation and the pack will continue to get topped up properly as normal so it's safe to keep using the device, but it's definitely not the behavior that we want. Also if the screen ever seems to stay garbled, you can always just press the button and it will refresh the display.

We will keep you updated and any other people who have this same behavior show up feel free to send an email to us so we can keep you in the loop once we work out the solution.
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