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davinche

[WARNING] Gotway Nikola 100v 1800WH Battery Fire

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Oh wow, that is wild, I'm sorry this happened to you. How scary! I am glad you are okay, and that this didn't happen inside. Jason is super awesome, that's for sure. Hopefully once this blows over, your friend may pickup interest again. This really is quite rare.

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Holy crap! Now I'm starting to eyeball mine that sit next to a bike full of gas. Thank goodness that wasnt indoors. The price of a wheel isnt jack squat compared to a house next to a hay field with volunteer fire dept. So glad you are okay. How long have these newer cells been in use now? Not yours, but altogether?

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1 minute ago, ShanesPlanet said:

Holy crap! Now I'm starting to eyeball mine that sit next to a bike full of gas. Thank goodness that wasnt indoors. The price of a wheel isnt jack squat compared to a house next to a hay field with volunteer fire dept. So glad you are okay. How long have these newer cells been in use now? Not yours, but altogether?

I bought the wheel when they were first listed on ewheels. I only started using it in January (was away with family for the christmas holidays). Been using it for 4 or so months as my commuter. Stopped using it due to COVID. Sunday was the first time since the start of COVID that I wanted to ride it.

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Oh crap, I'm sorry for your loss. I'm following this case with attention. How many miles have you been riding it so far ?

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Question regarding Lithium-ion fires: In cases where a fire starts, can they explode even when the device is turned off? or does it usually just happen when you turn on the device when the batteries are faulty?

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1 minute ago, fred8569 said:

Oh crap, I'm sorry for your loss. I'm following this case with attention. How many miles have you been riding it so far ?

Darknessbot says 495.3 miles. There are a couple of trips that aren't logged there, so about 500miles.

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Posted (edited)

Also mysteriously... I've been obsessed in trying to figure out what even caused this to happen. But one of the things I did was to look on aliexpress for the Nikola 100v 1800WH. All of the sellers are selling them with LG M50T cells now.... makes you wonder why they deviated from the Panasonic cells 🤔

Edited by davinche
grammar

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Are those cells the refurbished tesla motor cells? Maybe Jason could help answer that.

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the big clue is ewheels fast charger. those have been known to overcharge causing other fire issues (one in nyc) 

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4 minutes ago, Ben Kim said:

the big clue is ewheels fast charger. those have been known to overcharge causing other fire issues (one in nyc) 

It makes me ask you one more question @davinche : Were you using your wheel at 100% battery out at normal and lower state of battery ?

 

By the way, what kind of default a charger can possibly have if it charges at continuous amperage ?

 

Did we know more about this other case you just referred to ?

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Interesting, I received my Nikola Plus this may, ordered may 5th. I don't think my wheel is part of the recall, but I was  e-mailing Zen Lee and Jason about why the heck is my fan on all the time and making pulsing and then sounds like a rocket after riding for awhile. I did a little experiment just now and maybe this is the new behavior for the Nikola Plus wheels to be on all the time and then higher RPMs once it hits 100F. Maybe they changed the behavior of the wheel to have the fan on all the time to prevent overheating and prevent thermal runaway in the newer batches?

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, Ben Kim said:

the big clue is ewheels fast charger. those have been known to overcharge causing other fire issues (one in nyc) 

Ewheels asked me if I saw any of the overcharging symptoms in the charger (eg: display > 100v, etc). I did not. Also, the fire didn't happen whilst charging, it happened outside when I took the wheel out.

 

14 minutes ago, fred8569 said:

It makes me ask you one more question @davinche : Were you using your wheel at 100% battery out at normal and lower state of battery ?

 

By the way, what kind of default a charger can possibly have if it charges at continuous amperage ?

 

Did we know more about this other case you just referred to ?

I used the fast charger from ewheels. But I've never charged it to full. I've only used the 3A, 90% setting. The charger shuts off by itself once it reaches the desired voltage. I've never left a charger plugged in overnight though even though this charger has this safety feature. It has always reported 96-97V when the wheel is done charging.

Edited by davinche

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31 minutes ago, alcatraz said:

Are those cells the refurbished tesla motor cells? Maybe Jason could help answer that.

I've also been doing some research on that The tesla cells were in fact jointly created with Panasonic and I believe the 21700A are supposed to be them. Whether or not the ones in my wheel were refurbished... 🤷‍♂️

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They have three small lines (tesla stamp) on the negative side.

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Posted (edited)

Makes me wonder if having ALWAYS charged to 90%, did the balancing circuit EVER get to engage and get the cells even? Just a shot in the dark, Im no chemist. I also find it odd that most sold on ali are now the m50T type. Makes you also kind of wonder about the OTHER wheels coming out with these NEW and BETTER cells... This aint going to help gotway any, thats for sure.

Edited by ShanesPlanet

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12 minutes ago, WI_Hedgehog said:

Note of caution: Charging to 90% doesn't engage the balancing circuitry in the top-balancing boards I've seen. I understand Gotway uses top-balancing boards.

In theory, this could allow a cell to get out of balance and drop below critical voltage. At such a depressed state a cell can undergo a chemical change and permanently die, or overheat during use. The death of one cell affects those in parallel with it, amplifying the problem and increasing the risk. 

---

Also of note is cell design. In highly simplified terms, the more lithium there is in the anode the more powerful the cell. However, when charging, lithium ions reaching the anode and don’t form a smooth layer, but instead form spikes called dendrites, which can grow large enough to pierce the insulator and create a short circuit between anode and cathode, possibly resulting in a fire, not necessarily during charging, as heat (thermal expansion) / vibration could cause the dendrites to piece the insulator. 

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Oddly, the two can work together. Dendrites don't easily break up, which lessons the cell's charge capacity, causing the rest of the cell to work harder and heat up during discharge and thermally expand. With a lowered charge capacity the cell also charges up faster, possibly forming more dendrites.

Also of note is battery life can  generally be doubled by not charging above 80% capacity, or not running the battery below 30%. So if you have to pick one or the other, it's better to charge the battery fully than it is to discharge the battery fully. An added benefit is charging the battery fully engages the balance circuits, and also doesn't cause a decrease in speed due to lowered battery voltage while riding like would more easily happen when charging to only 80%.

Hmm... so what is the correct way to charge then? Also, is it only gotway boards that do "top-balancing"? What about Kingsong or Inmotion bms?

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1 hour ago, Gadgetfann said:

There was mention of the Nikola’s battery pack appearing “swollen” in this post by ecodrift back in December.   Photos - Ecodrift disassembles the Nikola 100V 21700

The last bit of the (translated) post says: "Gotway encountered some difficulties when using Panasonic elements, so LG is now used." What is this "difficulty" that Gotway encountered?

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