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Latest cell a flop!
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #1
Latest cell a flop!
Hi all. I'm very disappointed with my latest gen that I completed last night. I was eager to test it, so I got up early this morning after allowing it to dry and tested it. I don't know what's wrong but I couldn't get much amperage draw at all from it, best was 10amps with heaps of NaOH in it. I kept adding sodium hydroxide but not much improvement until it just stopped producing alltogether. I had to cover the cells with electrolyte to get much current. Best production at 10 amps was 250 ml /minute!

I think the plate connections to the connecting bolts might have been bad or something. I cleaned the plates when I reassembled it, but not the connection parts, because I thought they looked not too bad. I don't know, I'll have to look at it properly.

The plates got very dirty very quickly, and the electrolyte went a purple colour. It might have been some residue from the acrylic cement reacting with the electrolyte or something.

Looks like I will have to tear it all apart and re-assemble it. I got a bit over confident and didn't properly test it before assembling it. I have built and rebuilt cells so many times I didn't think I needed to. Now I can't fix anything without breaking it open and re-building it! At least acrylic isn't too expensive. I can't afford new plates yet, so I'll recycle those after a good clean.

The gen is a series cell (+n-)...(+nn-)...(+n-) Fully isolated cells in an acrylic case. Plates 71.5" x 2.5" 304ss.

Oh well... back to the drawing board.
07-20-2008 05:11 PM
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colchiro Offline
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RE: Latest cell a flop!
Is there a reason for the extra neutral in the middle cell?

(+n-)...(+nn-)...(+n-)

Sounds like contamination from an adhesive or sealant.

Got any pics of the construction?

Rick

Links: Documents / Tuning for Mileage | Toyota Sensors | Autoshop Sensor Tutorials
07-20-2008 05:49 PM
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stevekos7 Offline
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RE: Latest cell a flop!
colchiro Wrote:Is there a reason for the extra neutral in the middle cell?

(+n-)...(+nn-)...(+n-)

Sounds like contamination from an adhesive or sealant.

Got any pics of the construction?

I wanted 7 spacings over the 3 cells instead of 6. I wouldn't think that would be a problem. I can always remove one. It would mean slightly higher voltage across the cells but I could handle that with lower electrolyte.

I was also puzzled by the erratic production. There didn't seem to be much production between the plates. I think that the electrolyte must have been resistive in some way.The purple discolouration got my attention straight away. I've never seen that before, but I haven't built an acrylic box before either. The sealant might be the problem. I used weld-on #16, works great with very strong joins. Very strong solvent smell though, I had to do it outside. I don't know what the solvent is. I had to use quite a bit because my parts didn't fit exactly, had to cut them all by hand. If that's all it is then it's just a matter of waiting for everything to cure properly before testing. Maybe leave a couple of days. I might get the parts machine cut this time and then I wil be able to use less cement.

I could take a pic, but more than likely I will have it apart tonight and rebuild it anyway.

Thanks Rick.

PS: You obviously don't do anything else with your life. Bit like me these days. I am obsessed with getting this project right at present. My wife thinks I'm a bit over the top, she doesn't see the point.
07-20-2008 06:26 PM
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colchiro Offline
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RE: Latest cell a flop!
My wife works 4 hours away from here so no-one nagging me.Cool

I know all about the obsession. I don't sleep well as it is, but sleep even less when something's bothering me, (like a new cell that doesn't work right).Gasp

Rick

Links: Documents / Tuning for Mileage | Toyota Sensors | Autoshop Sensor Tutorials
07-20-2008 06:36 PM
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baracuda Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Latest cell a flop!
Steve,
PM Gary. He just built a new gen using an old battery box and ended up with similar results. Maybe you two can come up with a common element, that might be causing the lack of continuity through the cells.

You can't skin a fish before you catch it !
07-20-2008 07:32 PM
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stevekos7 Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Latest cell a flop!
It's gotta be the solvent in the cement. These same plates were in my last cell and no problem with it. In an old battery case it will be the dissolved old electrolyte in the case (or in the old plates if he is using them).
07-20-2008 08:10 PM
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