Which battery/2m HT?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by N8WCT, Nov 27, 2012.

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  1. N8WCT

    N8WCT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have a bug out bag, which I keep a Kenwood TH-K2 w/ the NiMH stock battery. My problem is, the battery dies over time. Not really a long time, but like one week of none use, and its dead enough as to not transmit.

    Couple of questions...would the AA battery be a better option for me since I am "storing" the unit? Would (AA) Lithium batteries last longer? Or should I buy a new HT that has a rechargeable Lithium Ion battery?

    Again, my goal is to "store" the unit.

  2. AE5DX

    AE5DX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    If you already have a AA battery pack (shell), I'd go with the Energizer ultimate lithiums. I've had very good results with them, whether in an led flashlight or an HT. They have a shelf life of 15 years, and they don't leak.
  3. W8MRL

    W8MRL Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I agree to a point with Steve. The shelf life of AA's is terrific now. They advertise 10 years. My only thought is the cost for the ultimate lithiums. This time of year you will see 4-AA packs of Energizer or Duracell alkalines for less than $2.00 a pack. About 2 weeks ago I bought 5 packs (<$10.00) and tossed them in my go-bag. The ultimate lithiums are, at a minimum, twice the cost - BUT they do have much more capacity. Hey, if you only replace the packs every 5 years then the cost isn't that big a deal. It's not like you are buying them every 6 months.

    Either way you choose - you'll be ready to roll with non-rechargables, if you have the battery pack to use them in.
  4. K8ERV

    K8ERV Ham Member QRZ Page

    There may be a drain from the rig even when "off". Try removing the bat when not in use. I used to have to top off my T90A batts each month. Then I removed them and they hold for a long time.

    There is a possibility with some rigs that removal will lose memories, but not too likely. See if the manual mentions this.

    TOM K8ERV Montrose Colo
  5. WU8Y

    WU8Y Ham Member QRZ Page

    How old is the stock battery? NiMH has a relatively high self-discharge, but it shouldn't be that quick. Your battery pack may be approaching the end of its useful life. Rule of thumb is that a fully charged cell will lose about 20% SOC in a week, and 10% per month afterwards.

    Li batteries, both primary and secondary (single-use and rechargeable), have much lower self-discharge rates. Li primary cells are very stable in shelf-storage applications. I'd recommend going with the AA battery holder, for the reason that the Li primaries are good for shelf storage, and in a fecal-matter-hits-the-rotary-impeller situation AA cells are probably one of the few things that will still likely be available, even the alkalines will work for a while.

    Look into a solar charger for AA cells, too. Then you could get a couple of Li or NiMH secondary AA cells and keep them going (relatively) indefinitely.
  6. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I just carry a box of Energizers around in my 'go kit' and the AA pack for my radio, without any batteries in it. I also have a 'D Cell' holder for my FT-817 - it will run the radio for a decent amount of time.
  7. AD7N

    AD7N Ham Member QRZ Page

    Single-use AA Lithiums are the ultimate non-rechargeable solution hands down. Alkalines are dirt cheap too.

    Low self-discharge NiMH batteries like Sanyo's AA Eneloops are a nice addition: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias=aps&field-keywords=eneloops
    They have extremely low self-discharge... 90% capacity after 1 year and 80% capacity after 3 years. They're not really cost effective though for emergency-only use unless you have some way you plan on charging them (solar charger, bicycle generator etc).

    I'd say you are definitely well off salvaging the radio and getting a AA battery holder and some AAs of some kind. Alkalines really do hold their charge for a very long time and are extremely cheap.
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2012
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