This is perfect. I'm already in love.
This is perfect. I'm already in love.
Chica and I dived the Peace on Saturday 12/12 - and it could not have been better conditions.
A very mellow ride to Anacapa, four incredible dives in gin-clear water, a virtually empty boat (11 divers were set up, only about 9 were diving) and only one scooter battery.
Left at home was the battery bucket. Left at home was the charger. I rolled onto a boat with one battery. It was weird.
It was glorious.
Four long dives, and so much time saved. No longer am I cracking open my scooter on the SI to trade batteries a couple of times a day. I'm not storing another battery, I'm not charging another battery, I'm not schlepping another battery.
I'm liking this a lot.
Did I mention its faster, too? Oh yeah, there's that, too. This Monstah batter is noticeably faster than the stock battery.
So lets review:
- One batt, 4 dives. The battery that goes all day. We used about 19 - 20 of its 52 amp hours.
- Weighs a few ounces more than a standard batt (got the scoot trimmed out now - its wonderful) - and it will stay trimmed out as I'm not trading between batteries that weigh significantly different
- I roll on with just my scoot - no charger, no battery bucket
- On the SI - I can relax. No scrambling to change out the battery a couple times a day.
I could not be more pleased.
Next up: the reason we bought these. The super-sized shore dive.
Packing my car Friday night: "Can't forget the chargers and power-strip.... Oh, wait, I don't need those. I've got THE battery."
Loading onto the Peace: "Better get the charging station set up on the shelf... uh, wait... don't need to. I've got the DSS-Li-Ion battery."
Right before the 3rd dive: "Crikey! Forgot to change the batteries!!!....oh, duh... I've got the FBTWD (freekin' battery that won't die.) "
As Ken said so well, it was amazing.
One less thing to track so we were free to improvise on every dive, regardless of distance or current or total trigger time.
We scootered as much as we wanted to on each of four long dives, and still used less than half of the usable amp hours.
Scooters changed so much about our diving.
This spectacular battery is changing it yet again.
"If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." --Albert Einstein
Phil's review of the battery (only adds to Ken's excellent review):
After reading the thread here at Dive Matrix (and running my battery to depletion more than once), I decided to buy the Li-Ion battery. Went down to DSS on December 15 to pick it up. Tobin checked it out with my scooter just to make sure I had no issues. Tobin also gave me a tour of DSS - nice little manufacturing plant (rare here in Calif). He takes the time and effort to make sure his products work as advertised. When I got the battery home, I plugged it in to top off the charge - 20 minutes later, the charger said it was done and at 25.52 V (Tobin did say that the batter was charged before I left DSS).
The scooter was going on Deep Outdoors' Wreck Trek (18 - 20 Dec). The first dive was on the Tuna Clipper (180'). We spent 25 minutes on the wreck and then did our deco up the slope. Burn time on the battery was around 50 minutes of "on time". The scooter was slightly positive (same as before) but nose heavy. I took all the nose weight out and placed it into the rear bag. Next dive was Ship Rock. Here, I first tested the balance of the scooter - just right!. This dive was to 310' and was going to be all scooter except for some of the deco phase around ship rock. Total "on time" for this dive was around 60 minutes. I plugged the battery for the charge and a few hours later I was able to read from the screen on the charger that the battery received 16.2 AH of charge. It was nice to know how far I took the battery down and how much I had in reserve. I had only used 30% of the battery! Over the next two days, it was the same story. Day 2 used 13 AH and day 3 was 12 AH. In retrospect, I could have done the three day trip on the battery and left the charger home
This is a serious battery that takes the Sierra to a new level. I'm very pleased with the battery. Thanks Tobin
We love these batts. We've run 4 and even 5 dives on them without a charge.
So glad you're loving yours, Phil!
Quick questions: what is the equivalent lithium content of the new battery? really hoping for under 25grams but i have no idea how to calculate this. Thanks,
thanks for the quick reply and the explanation! now to start saving my pennies....
Deep Sea Supply Super Sierra Cave Trials
After a bit of apprehension I pulled the trigger last week on a new Lithium-Ion pack from Deep Sea Supply to upgrade my Sierra to super status. This scooter started off life as a standard Echo from Dive-Xtras and was upgraded with the Sierra variable speed electronics about a year ago. My overall impression is that I'm very happy with the selection and it definitely performed as advertised over a series of dives this past week diving Jackson Blue on Merritt's Mill Pond in Marianna Fl.
I had the pack shipped directly to Cave Adventures http://www.caveadventurers.com/ as they served as our base of operations for our week of diving. The pack came charged and we jumped in the water the same day we arrived for a test and tune dive. The first dive wasn't actually a scooter dive and I put the scooter in the water more to check the buoyancy/trim than anything. I had removed all of the trim weight and found that the scooter was a little positive and heavy in the nose. I eventually ended up adding ~12 ounces to the tail trim weight and ended up just slightly negative so the scooter will sit on the bottom and still a little nose heavy but just by a tad.
Day one trigger time was only about 15 minutes going back and forth across the run. Without recharging the scooter was put through its first real dive the following day. We dove Jackson Blue and put on around one hour of trigger time on a two hour dive. Later that night as I recharged the charger told my I had put back 17.5 Ahr in 4.5 hours. Not bad for a 52 Ahr pack.
Continuing with the crawl-before-you-walk approach the dive the following day was a little longer. We headed back to ~3300 feet of penetration and made it out and back in a little under two hours. Speeds were variable with most being mid trigger setting with the prop fully pitched with some time spent at the highest speed. Later that same day and without charging we hopped over to Twin Cave and did a short dive there. Total trigger time in Twin was only about 30-40 minutes with a little rest in between as we dropped the scooters before heading to the deep section. Upon charging I found I had used 19.7 Ahr.
The following day the plan was to go to the Stratosphere and the Terminal room, a goal which had alluded us last year due to my limited scooter capacity. My buddy was leading that day and his UV-26 is a little faster than my Sierra so I spent most of the dive at top speed. We made the round trip back to ~4600 feet and out with a short stop in right around two and a half hours. Total charge 21.4 Ahr.
The following day we did the same destination but took Crinoid Glory instead, similar amount of scootering. Since there are some low areas we swam the scooters for a little bit a couple of times and there was more low speed settings used. Similar charge 22.5 Ahr used. I think the flow was up a little from the previous day so I probably used more juice up in the beginning area of the cave overcoming flow.
My overall impression was very positive. We were covering ~9000 feet of cave over roughly three hour dives and I was only obtaining a depth-of-discharge of less than 50%. All this in the original Sierra footprint and 36 pounds! Sure made carrying the scooter up to charge easy.
It was sure nice to have one piece of gear working as advertised, can't say the same for the rest but that is another story...
Glad to hear the goods arrived and are working out for you.
If you haven't already you can shave a little nose weight by replacing the nose dring with some stout line. I've been using some 4mm kernmantle cord from the local rock climbing store.
The amphours returned by the charger has proven to be a pretty accurate measure of the battery capacity used.
I've logged amphours out during bench discharges and compared that to the amphours returned by the charger and it's usually within about 5%, not bad considering I using two different instruments for in vs out.
One of the nice things about Li-Ion batteries vs nickle based chemistries is they charge efficiently, typically over 95%, meaning most of the charge energy is actually captured and stored.
Ni-Cads and Nickle Metal batteries are much less efficient, ~65-70% That makes "charge returned" a much less reliable indicator of capacity used.
Thanks for the report and enjoy your trip.