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Old 02-28-2008, 09:33 AM   #11
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Weight saving is ALWAYS the goal Lug Nut For increased performance or fuel economy. It benefits both. Either teams will already be packin' only the fuel needed...or not. It's up to the individual. But dead weight savings is gold in the sense that is is 100% weight savings...all day, every day.
How much it costs...dollar per pound...that is what makes an option reasonable or not to the owner.
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Old 02-28-2008, 09:40 AM   #12
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oh yeah...weighed an AC Delco battery yesterday that I have laying around...fully charged and ready to go(so full moisture, not dry) a 550CCA I believe it is...digital scale...33lbs.
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Old 03-01-2008, 07:49 AM   #13
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Here's the state of the art of ultra light-weight batteries which the military have been using for awhile;

Voltphreaks 12 volt racing battery

and which Lotus drivers have been using with success to reduce weight;

Lotus forum

Even if one could only use these in Canada for half a year that would still be a saving, but a couple of other solutions would be a plug in battery warmer and a larger lower resistance cable between the battery and the starter. Nano-phosphate lithium batteries are still kind of expensive but prices are sure to come down as production ramps up;

A123Systems

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Old 03-01-2008, 08:08 AM   #14
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Hmmm, can they be deep cycled, and d'ya think I'd get a bulk discount on 30 of them? ....
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Old 03-01-2008, 09:10 AM   #15
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It would take a VERY long time for the savings to pay back on a $799 battery!

Think of it this way:
  • The average compact car weighs 1800-2500 lbs.
  • 40 lbs off of 1800 = a reduction of slightly better than 2%, 30 lbs off of 2500 = slightly better than 1%
  • Rolling resistance is not reduced linearly by the percentage of weight reduction
Now consider how much of your driving day is occupied by acceleration. At best, the weight savings will work out to a 1-2% reduction in fuel use while accelerating, probably less than 0.1% while cruising.

Even if you spent a lofty 50% of your fuel accelerating, that still cuts the FE improvement in half to 0.5-1%. At $3.50/gallon, that's 1.75-2.5 cents saved. $799 divided by $0.025 = 31960 gallons to be consumed just to get your money's worth out of it. If your car already gets 40 mpg, you would need to drive nearly 1.3 million miles for it to be worth it. (Edit: For comparison sake, a $140 battery would payback in 5600 gallons, or 224k miles in the same vehicle.) Given that, the improvement in rolling resistance is too miniscule to warrant serious consideration, and I've tried to present what I think represents the best case scenario.

Obviously the impact of weight has a much larger impact on vehicles that weigh less to begin with, but the average compact is going to rust away before it makes it worth it - if the battery actually lasts that long.

My point is that there are many far less expensive ways to reduce weight, but even a 10% reduction in weight isn't likely to show up as an economy improvement of more than 5%. Clearly, there are more cost effective ways to improve FE.
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Old 03-01-2008, 09:18 AM   #16
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Oh, and just in case there is an imaginary world where rolling resistance is directly linked to weight, cut those miles travelled for payback in half.

That's still not very compelling on a cost basis is it?
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Old 03-01-2008, 03:33 PM   #17
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Agreed that weight reduction only really affects acceleration, deceleration and handling...
I suppose one adjustment to that math could be that the owner needed a battery anyways. So if $60 is due, but goes with a $140 battery...$80 to recoup. Longevity of the battery is still an unknown of course.

Just noticed a Heavy-duty Lawn & Garden Energizer battery in the WallyWorld flyer...230cca...$38...can't find a weight anywhere on it tho.
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Old 03-01-2008, 04:14 PM   #18
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I got this one and its lasted me 2 and a half years so far.

I never listen to the radio with the car off and if Im not going to use my car for more then a week I disconnect it

http://www.zzperformance.com/grand_p...=185&catid=107
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Old 03-01-2008, 11:57 PM   #19
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I've looked at the 230CCA batteries at Wallyworld, and based on their size I'd estimate the weight to be around 13-15 pounds. I've also heard of others using this in their car with sucess.

There are ways to improve the performance of a small battery; use light weight synthetic motor oil to reduce the load on the starter. Swap out the running lights for LEDs, and turn down the dimmer switch on the dashboard lights. These mods will improve FE regardless of battery type.

The last time I needed a battery for my car I traded down a few sizes. I had a 630CCA battery that weighed 43 pounds, while my other car had a 580CCA/ 37 pound battery. The new one has 510CCA and weighs 28 pounds and cost the same.
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Old 03-02-2008, 08:18 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Three6Eight View Post
I got this one and its lasted me 2 and a half years so far.

I never listen to the radio with the car off and if Im not going to use my car for more then a week I disconnect it

http://www.zzperformance.com/grand_p...=185&catid=107
That's a decent price on a quality brand. Hawker Genesis, Odysee, SBS, etc. are all essentially made by the same folks and manufacture some of the best batteries in that size. I've also seen allot of good reviews on Dyna-Batt - which come with top or side style automotive binding posts.

I had decent luck with an SBS 13Ah battery in my race car. It lasted for over two years even after allowing it to slowly drain completely dead a couple of times. It's not allot of reserve capacity, but for an easy starting daily driven small motor, I never had any issues with it except for the parasitic drains of letting it sit for a week unused and connected.

ABSOLUTELY plan on disconnecting or trickle charging a battery this size if you are going to let it sit for more than a couple of days or so - unless you are 100% sure there are no parasitic drains on it. Even a simple digital clock or alarm system can take one below starting capacity within a few days.
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