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Power pole connector problems

2

Comments

  • John - K3MA
    John - K3MA Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Maybe someone should make up a little wire retainer clip that can be easily retrofitted on the back of the Flex and will keep the two power pole pieces together.  Once engaged the wire retainer would need to be detached to allow the power poles to be disconnected.  I am thinking in the line of the tube retainer wires that use to be used to keep tubes from falling out of the socket.

    https://blog.thetubestore.com/restrain-your-tubes/
  • Bob Needleman
    Bob Needleman Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    That would help with the loosening problem, but wouldn't help with the melting problem and corrosion/voltage drop issue that is well described with power poles. 
    Bob K3AC
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Anderson Powerpole Connectors are the design standard for all emergency communications centers If you want to sell your equipment in the USA to the emcomm environment you must use Powerpoles. It’s not a price point decision. It’s a compatibility and interchangeability requirement So all this talk about cost savings is irrelevant. By the way. I have never had an issue with Powerpoles on the dozens of equipment I have installed over the years. In high vibration situations there are locking pins and other auxiliary holders available Voltage drops are easily corrected by applying deoxit
  • Lionel
    Lionel Member ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Never had problem-for years all ok.
  • Neal Pollack, N6YFM
    Neal Pollack, N6YFM Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    #1:  Power poles are ****.  I don't care what the political beurocrats did in the EMComm Centers.

    #2:  What you can do to slightly reduce the loose, high-resistance, heating and voltage drop, is to
    slightly bend the pin wiper contact to a little tighter angle BEFORE sliding/snaping it into the plastic connector shell.   The makes the mate use more pressure.   I do this.   But for sure, I have had my share of trouble with loose intermittant anderson power poles.

    Even the RC Toy crowd has a far better connector with far better positive mating force;

    XT-60 connectors;   https://blog.ampow.com/rc-battery-connector-types/#XT60_Connectors



    I am SO very sick of Anderson power poles problems, that when I retire, I may actually design,
    make, and offer a 13.8V distribution panel using the above XT-60 connectors for hams to use.
    The above connector design has FAR more metal to metal surface area contact, is rated at 60amps,
    and takes far more pressure to pull apart.   Almost ANYTHING is better than the power pole design.

    Neal
  • Neal Pollack, N6YFM
    Neal Pollack, N6YFM Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    And, when my Flex 6600 is out of warranty, I may just replace the back panel anderson power pole
    with something the spends less time falling out when I move the radio around.

  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    A well designed connector does not require corrective actions or devices to be reliable.  
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    For distribution I use Blue sea systems distribution panels, used for years in the boating industry and use universally available and cost affective and tough, crimp connection or soldered devices.  I have used them for 20+ years, never a problem.  No expensive crimper tool or proprietary parts.  One can go to any hardware store and get parts.  I only have one (no choice) option with my Flex and it failed after six years.  Understand I love my 6500 but I don’t like the Power Poles period..... a $5000 radio deserves better.  
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    There are millions of PowerPole Connectors used on radios in Emcomm Operations with no reliability issues which is one of the reasons they were made the standard.   

    OTOH.. if seems a tiny few hams have issues....

    On one side there are non technical people using the radios every day.. albeit the radios are usually installed and serviced by professionals.

    On the other side, there are amateurs... 

    Need I say more


    Oh... By the Way ..the Emcomm radios cost far more than $5000
  • Bob Meeker KA4SNM
    edited May 2020
    I've actually tie-wrapped Power Poles together to prevent them from separating, so I                    agree - A $5,000 radio deserves better!

    BTW - Just realized I've tie-wrapped my FLEX 6600M (extension) power cable together fearing separation......
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    The difference between you and me is that I do not try to belittle people and their opinions.  If you want respect then offer respect.....
  • Bob Needleman
    Bob Needleman Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Disagree with that line of reasoning - first of all, when it comes to the Flex 6000 series, we're not dealing with Emcomm radios that may need to be switched in and out quickly, needed for mobile opeartion ,etc. These are essentially large, base type radios (referring especially to the 6400M/6600M) that sit on a desk, and may not get moved around for months/years at a time. The fact that some owners are experiencing loosening of the power poles, voltage drop, and melting (OMG) of these cheap things suggest to me they are not reliable. They may have been better constructed when Anderson first came out with them and had the patent protection, but that's expired and now they're probably being made in China from cheap plastic housings and metal contacts. And since we really should be using heavy gauge DC power cords to prevent voltage drop (eg. 10-12 ga wire, which is heavy) - Flex should be supplying all their radios with a locking style DC connector, not a 'slip in' type power pole. Whether it be a 4 pin Molex (locking), PowerCon, or some other such connector - it really should be replaced given the high price tag of these radios. 

    BTW - I know that many of the Fed agencies (eg. NOAA - 'storm chasers', etc) use  ICOM commercial transceivers - and every Icom radio I've ever seen uses MOLEX connectors - originally the large 6 Pin, now the 4 Pin. And once they lock in, they will not come out, unless you unhinge the locking device. 

    Bob K3AC
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    I am stating FACTS such as

    1. PowerPole Connectors are required if you intend to sell into the EmComm world
    2. Millions of Power Pole Connectors are in use with no issues
    3. PowerPole Connectors are used on Low and Mid Priced Radios such as the 6000 series as well as many much high priced EmComm/ Commercial radios and other equipment
    4.  Only a very few Hams have ever had any significant issues with PowerPoles
    5. Flex Radios are also used in the EmComm/Commercial world
    6. PowerPole Connectors are used because they provide easy compatibility with various power sources and easy interchangeability

    If stating FACTS implies that one is disrespecting another's opinion then clearly there must be some error in basis of another's opinion that needs correcting.  If facts make one feet that their opinion is belittled then clearly the opinion is contrary to the facts. 

    Bottom Line: PowerPole connectors are unlikely to change and it really is not an earth shattering issue..  if you do not like them spend a few pennies and change them to whatever you think will make you happy.
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Howard, all those bullets, are irrelevant, in regards to my issues with Power Poles.  You can like them all you want.  

    With the following statement you made this personal in regards to using innuendo as away to bully someone. Don’t let your ego get to out of hand.....

    “ OTOH.. if seems a tiny few hams have issues....


    On one side there are non technical people using the radios every day.. albeit the radios are usually installed and serviced by professionals.

    On the other side, there are amateurs... 

    Need I say more”

    I know exactly what you were saying.  For that you do not need the title of Elmer....

    seen you do this many times mocking people....
    At this point this departed being a discussion to something else that is very ugly.  

    Sorry Howard.....
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    As I said... PowerPoles are no big deal..

    if you don't like them for a few pennies you can easily swap them out for one of the many solutions suggested in this thread

    The time you are wasting on this thread trying to provoke an "ugly" fight could likely be better spent changing them out to something that would make you much happier...


    I personally like powerpoles because of their convenience and easy swap compatibility.  

    In fact, there are 10 different radios and at least a dozen peripherals currently in my shack at home and likely as many at the contest station I used to support.  Long before Flex came on the scene, I changed out all the connections on the Icoms and Yaesus to PowerPoles (IIRC the K3's already had them?) so that we could easily swap the radios around.  When I was active in Emcomm I could easily supply a number of radios for the emergency and not have to worry about bringing cable to fit.   I have never had an issue with the dozens of powerpoles that I support..

    Sure there are much better connectors out there but using them would force Flex to give up the EmComm/Commercial Markets...not a good business decision...



  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    If you do not like PowerPoles, spend a few pennies and swap them out for something that makes you happier... its just not that difficult to do...  Likely take you less time to accomplish than you have already spent on this thread.
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Oh, I plan too, but depends on whether If I keep this particular radio.  You should not be so critical, as in stating that the contributors are MALCONTENTS and some of the other descriptions I have seen you use. It seems that you don’ understand the nature of communities like this.  You will always see the thin edge of problems that come to the surface.   My contribution was to inform, not to criticize anyone or any group or organization.  The failure mode I described can happen to any device and was just a warning.  The suggestions put forward by all the contributors were appreciated and I used some in my applied fix.  Working well now by the way.  My advice to you Howard, is to keep personal and social barbs out of your comments.
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2020
    You are the only one being ugly, you forced me to defend myself, I don’t like or tolerate bullying of any kind.  You did not need to try to prove something.  It was a better discussion without you.
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    It was only a better discussion without me because I dared to point out facts rather than unsupportable opinions and dared to bust the bubble that this was a major issue.


    It's not a big issue for 99% (say) of users.  Flex will not redesign the 6000 for that 1%. If you don't like Powerpoles they can easily be remedied for a few pennies....


    I have no interest in furthering your attempt to start a silly fight over nothing.

    I have no idea who the heck you are and I definitely did not direct any initial comments to you personally.. that you chose  to try to instigate a fight by using words like "Ugly and Malcontents": is clearly your problem not mine... 

    In fact, I have never used the word Malcontents in any post (too formal a word for me) as I prefer "Whiners" - which is much funnier... and less formal...

    INMNSHO..this topic is a non issue for most people, there have been many good alternative solutions posted and and the topic should have been closed long ago.


    BTW... I promise not to waste my time responding to you again as Life is far too short...   

    Please do me the courtesy  of avoiding us as well.
  • Paul_Mills
    Paul_Mills Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    I have used those for high vibration mobile installations with great success.  
  • Brian Denley  KB1VBF
    Brian Denley KB1VBF Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Great idea!
  • Bob G   W1GLV
    Bob G W1GLV Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    There is nothing wrong with Power Poles. The reason they heat up is from improper assembly. I have a thermistor glued on the positive connector to monitor any temp change. I've had my 6500 for 6 years now and have not seen any significant temp change at the connectors.
    There is a PDF file on the net that will show you how to properly assemble these connectors.
    Here's the URL for proper assembly instructions:https://powerwerx.com/help/powerpole-assembly-instructions
  • AA0KM
    AA0KM Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020

  • henrylance
    henrylance Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Pat.  Am I correct that this was a Flex supplied power cord  ??
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Yes, the original....
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Very good for reliability, but not safe.....
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    My comments reflect two different issues.  The first was the current failure and the second was my personal opinion of the design of the connector.  I was clear on both points.  My comments were not meant to sway anybody from not using them, in fact we are kinda held hostage to there use. Changing out the connector for most users  might void the warranty.  In my case not a problem, unless I wanted to trade in for another radio with Flex.  My main concern about the design is that it can become unstable due to a number of possible mechanical scenarios.  And I had that happen.  So my point is to say is just watch out, keep the connector protected in some way, mechanically to prevent a loose connector condition that could cause excessive heat. It comes under the category of “Lessons Learned”.   And my purpose in this post is to spread the word on my lessons learned for all to be aware of.  Nothing sinister here, as some contributors have intoned.  PS: I love my 6500!
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    The cost as an individual project to make an improvement, is not out of bounds cost wise.  As pointed out earlier, cost of manufacturing is an issue based on cost per unit.  So companies will make compromises for the purpose of cost reduction of many units produced.  
  • Patrick
    Patrick WH6HI KauaiMember ✭✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Never claimed it as a major issue.  Just that the this failure type can happen to Power Poles and to be aware and keep an eye on your installation.  I kept mine very secure for years.  Like most mechanical devices they can wear out too.  

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