Followup questions: User battery for Maestro

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  • Updated 1 year ago
My original Maestro shipped with an internal charging wire that proved unsupportable with the many different external batteries available, and was "retracted" (pun intended).  I currently run my Maestro from either a 12V shack battery, the supplied wall-wart, or rarely from a user battery.

Followup questions for the community:
  1. Any solutions for charging a user battery (while still internally mounted and connected) using the Maestro wall-wart or a 12V feed?  My battery is a Mogix with "IN" and 2.1A + 2.5A "OUT".
  2. FRS: Any solution for re-engaging the internal charger?  There has been time available for an alternate solution; anything that may be shared?
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Stan - VA7NF

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Posted 1 year ago

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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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Stan was your Maestro a pre production unit?
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Stan - VA7NF

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No it was a production unit but first run.  These had a second wire from "inside" with the small connector for charge; after a month of discussion and a flurry of "What type of battery works?" questions the FRS conclusion was the only safe thing was to leave the internal charger circuit unused.
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Chris Tate - N6WM, Elmer

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hmm ok I thought flex had made the decision to remove the charge cable completely. in any event I don't think there was a plan to restore that functionality as far as I was told.
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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There is no plan to restore that feature.  The problem stems from the batteries, not the charging circuit.  What was discovered was most battery banks are not engineered to be charged at the same time they are providing voltage. In some cases, this can lead to an overheating condition that might lead to a combustion event (aka "fire").  Since we do not know what batteries are susceptible, we opted for safety and removed the charging cable as a feature.

If this safety measure is bypassed, or the battery is charged while it is providing power to the Maestro, any damage occurs is not covered under the product warranty.  In addition, FlexRadio is not responsible for any secondary damages to property or injury that may occur as a result of unintended usage.
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Stan - VA7NF

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"The problem stems from the batteries"
Thanks Tim - That negates trying to rig up an external charge circuit.  It has been a year old nagging question.
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Don

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HI Stan

to me understanding of the charging matter:

the internal battery has to be taken out for recharging, not sure if it is charged while having the maestro on the wall wart charger

to my distress I had not had my maestro charged during more then 8 weeks, while on vacation, although the user battery was in place all the time, which resulted in deep discharge of the internal battery, I have the Maestro on the way back now from the service centre in Germany

73, PE3DON
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k3Tim

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I cracked open my Maestro (and voided the warranty?) installed a cable for charging that looks similar to:

StarTech.com 8" M/M, USB OTG Mobile Device Adapter Cable (UUUSBOTG8IN)

https://www.amazon.com/StarTech-com-Mobile-Device-Adapter-UUUSBOTG8IN/dp/B018M8YEX0

A battery that fits like a glove:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B018I5H9BQ/_encoding=UTF8?coliid=I1NCBS2ZP1XUNW

One has to plug the new cable into a connector on a board in the Maestro. It's very obvious where. The other end plugs into the bat. One has to file the plastic in Maesrto a bit to fit this new battery cable in place. This handy work is hidden by the bat cover.  Also, the little rubber bumpers in the bat compartment need to go away. The physical size of this bat is maximum that can fit the Maestro battery compartment.
Unfortunately, the bat won't self start so a nylon shoulder washer (as used for mounting T03 transistor) is added as a push button, The back cover of the Maestro is filed slightly between one of the grate openings to allow the washer to protrude thru. This also acts as a quasi-light pipe.  The newly added bat charges from the 12V-DC input just fine and shows a green LED when charging.

To start the Maestro one holds the on button down on Maestro (as usual) and also hits the bat button once every 5 to 10 seconds until the Maestro splash screen is displayed. After using this setup for many months it seems to work fine (other than no auto start).

The Maestro internal bat, which I assume is the bat in the tablet, won't charge from the 'usb' battery.

Taking apart the Maestro is not for the faint of heart and if something goes wrong with these Lit bats it can be a big problem. In the end it worked out fine, although disassembly / re-assembly is a bit nerve wracking.

I operated FD on this added bat for several hours. Not sure how much charge was left but I think there was a lot. I think the Maestro (if memory serves) would go 10 hours on a  16000 mAH bat.

 k3Tim / 6