Connecting Batteries

Having moved to using LiFe batteries for lightweight portable power, I needed to make them compatible with the PowerPole connectors most of my equipment uses.

The 4200 batteries come with 5.5mm bullet connectors, so the easy way was to buy a bullet to banana plug cable from the same supplier as the battery and replace the banana plugs with PowerPoles. These cables have very flexible insulation, so are great when in use.

I noticed that an insulation gap appeared where the 5.5mm bullet connectors joined together, so to keep things safe and stop the connectors coming apart inadvertently, I covered the join with heat shrink tube and  I’ll keep an eye on it.

bulletcon

An alternative is to connect the PowerPoles directly to the battery.

plug1

You need to be very careful not to short the battery cables while doing this, and do take off any metal rings on your hands, as if you short via a ring you may lose the finger.

fingerringburn

I use 30A PowerPole inserts and you may find that the battery conductor is too big to fit. As I am not needing more than 30A, I just trim the cable strands off until they fit snugly, I also put a bit of thin heat shrink from the cable to the crimp part of the PowerPole.

You might be wondering where the fuses are, and they will be in the circuit which is connected to the battery. Putting them on each battery lead would have been clunky, and if reasonable care is taken, its unlikely that there will be a short across the PowerPoles on the battery.

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