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Tuesday, 10 April 2018


Off-grid solutions - OptiMate DC to DC

If a rider is nowhere near an AC power outlet and the motorcycle’s battery needs charging, most of the options he or she has are halfway between less than ideal and impractical.
A 12V battery can be jump-started from another vehicle or a friend’s motorcycle - but where are the correct jumper cables when you need them?

You can use one of those nifty lithium jump packs, that is, if you’ve not cooked it to death in your saddlebag! However, the problem remains after starting, and even after many hours of riding to recharge the battery - if that battery has developed sulphation, it has lost its ability to hold charge; or to put it into real world perspective, the ‘no start’ problem will repeat the next morning.
If you have a flat 12.8V-13.2V lithium battery, jump starting is risky. A flat lithium battery can suffer permanent damage if high current is dumped into it. A low volt lithium battery needs to be nursed back to health (in reality, slowly charged back up to at least 10-20 percent) before it can take and deliver high current.
The new OptiMate DC to DC is “a perfect and safe solution for any powersport battery,” according to TecMate CTO Martin Human, “including for 12.8V-13.2V lithium (LiFePO4) batteries.

“It is fully automatic, so there is no need to figure out what battery type is in the vehicle. Simply hook it up to a fully charged 12V source battery (e.g. a good Samaritan’s car or pickup truck) and then within a minute to the flat 12V lead-acid or 12.8V-13.2V lithium (LiFePO4) battery — even a lithium battery with built in BMS (battery management system) protection.
“The OptiMate DC to DC model TM500 will automatically reset the BMS (if the battery has one) and save/recondition that flat low-volt battery, charge it at 2 amps, then test and maintain the battery.
“The good news for those impatient to ride, with a charge rate of 2 amps the battery will be good and ready the moment the green test LED lights up, which means 4-6 hours for your typical cruiser motorcycle battery. That battery will be reconditioned and ready to ‘start your engine’ the next morning.”