Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Honda Pan-European 1st generation (German design)

Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby David W » 15 Nov 2014, 20:24

Let us review here what we know about gel type batteries recommended for a Pan or ST1100.

In a separate thread, we discussed a different type of Pan battery: the OEM or AGM. In that thread, we said,

David W wrote:...
The "gel" type is and isn't covered here. A "true" gel or deep-cycle battery can be the subject of another thread because it differs from the OEM/AGM type considered here in three ways:

- It can be deeply discharged and then recharged without shortening its life. (An OEM type tends to not fully recover if deeply discharged.)

- It has a higher "internal resistance" which translates into less engine cranking power, compared to an OEM/AGM type.

- Its "electrolyte" contains silica which makes it a paste. The OEM electrolyte is mostly absorbed into glass "mats" or separators which take away its liquid nature, but it is not a paste and contains no silica. (AGM is short for Absorbent Glass Mats.)

However, the OEM type is sometimes branded as "gel" because of the liberties battery sellers take with terminology. Here are two quotes from an American book dated 2007 which is about motorcycle electrics: "The AGM design can be somewhat confusing, as battery manufacturers come up with all sorts of marketing names for their batteries. These include: gel cell, gel, sealed, dry charged, maintenance free, dry cell, and others. Whatever they are called, all of these batteries are an AGM design" and "The term 'gel' battery is often confused with an AGM battery design."
...
So our first Question is: Is there really a "true" gel battery recommended for a Pan or ST1100?
One rider reports using a Motobatt brand gel battery in his Pan. So let's focus first on that brand. What battery model would that be?
'Tis not its looks, but how it cooks.
And I've found that most liter size Pans, when warmed up, cook well.
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby alans1100 » 16 Nov 2014, 02:19

From the same site I posted for the OEM batteries http://www.ssbpowersport.com.au/Home.aspx and included in the list for suitable 1100A batteries.

PART NUMBER GTX14-BS http://www.ssbpowersport.com.au/Product ... fault.aspx
BATTERY TYPE: High Performance Gel
VOLTAGE 12 Volts
CCA:(cold cranking amps) 245
AH (20hr): 12

SSB PowerSport High Performance Gel batteries are a versatile & reliable alternative to conventional lead-acid batteries. Each cell is sealed by a valve preventing penetration by airborne oxygen. Excess pressure (from over charging) is vented and the valve resets. Gases within the battery is recombined to form water therefore never needing water and making it a genuine maintenance free battery that is completely spill proof making it ideal for Extreme Power Sports
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby David W » 17 Nov 2014, 03:44

David W wrote:... One rider reports using a Motobatt brand gel battery in his Pan. So let's focus first on that brand. What battery model would that be?
Can anyone point me to a web site for Motobatt batteries? (Google.com did not work for me.)
'Tis not its looks, but how it cooks.
And I've found that most liter size Pans, when warmed up, cook well.
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby alans1100 » 17 Nov 2014, 05:34

David W wrote:Can anyone point me to a web site for Motobatt batteries? (Google.com did not work for me.)


http://www.motobatt.com.au/ But not much there.

This one is better but not a gel battery but AGM battery with more lead is all that stands out

http://www.probatteries.com.au/motobatt-batteries.html

This is the one that replaces the OEM
http://www.probatteries.com.au/uploads/ ... btx12u.pdf
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby David W » 28 Nov 2014, 20:30

David W wrote:...
One rider reports using a Motobatt brand gel battery in his Pan. So let's focus first on that brand. What battery model would that be?
That rider has given the model number of said battery as MBTX12U.

Looking up that number, the first image I ran across says clearly "Absorbed Glass Mat" . So this is more or less the standard AGM or OEM type of battery. I will now look for web pages that refer to it as a "gel" battery. More importantly, I did find this on a larger image of an MBTX12U by Motobatt: Made in China .

(It looks now as if there is no true gel battery made for a Pan or ST1100. So our "battery basics" thread remains the one called Battery Basics for the OEM or AGM Case on page viewtopic.php?f=9&t=13899 .)
'Tis not its looks, but how it cooks.
And I've found that most liter size Pans, when warmed up, cook well.
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby Baldeagle » 29 Nov 2014, 00:21

I think the mistake was mine in calling the Motobatt battery a "Gel" one, as I thought the "G" stood for Gel and didn't know it meant Glass :oops:

The volts were running high before the AGM battery was bought so the fault didn't begin with that battery.
I bought the AGM one to replace the one on the bike which I suspected was faulty.

The measurment of 13.4 volts was done after the battey (not AGM) had been charged overnight at 1 amp rate then left to stand for 1 hour, which is, I believe, the standard time to leave them. Open to correction on that though. :)

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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby David W » 29 Nov 2014, 22:50

We have heard from the member who has the Motobatt battery discussed above. When he talks about "The volts" here, he is referring to his battery's voltage when his Pan engine is running.
Baldeagle wrote:... The volts were running high before the AGM battery was bought, so the fault didn't begin with that battery. I bought the AGM one to replace the one on the bike which I suspected was faulty.

The measurement of 13.4 volts was done [with the engine turned off and] after the battery (not AGM) had been charged overnight at 1 amp rate then left to stand for 1 hour, which is, I believe, the standard time to leave them. Open to correction on that though. :) Bill
If it is the current Motobatt battery you charged overnight and then measured, it sounds as if that battery is in fine shape. Letting it stand for one hour should have allowed its voltage to stabilize enough, especially if the battery was still installed in the Pan (because the small, electric draw from the clock would help it to stabilize quicker). Right off hand, I am unable to locate any recommendation as to how long one should let the charged battery sit. But the less time one let's it sit, the more one runs the risk of the measurement being deceptively on the high side. When in doubt, let it sit another hour or even another day; then remeasure. (I started this message with the word "If" because I was a bit uncertain what you meant by the words "not AGM".)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Two other related threads here:
Battery Voltage, and its continuation:
ST1100 pre '96 alternator stator replacement
'Tis not its looks, but how it cooks.
And I've found that most liter size Pans, when warmed up, cook well.
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby Baldeagle » 29 Nov 2014, 23:00

The battery that was charged overnight and then stood for an hour was a Yuasa YTX-14BS.
I believe this is the standard lead-acid type for the Pan.
Sorry for not making it clear.

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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby David W » 29 Nov 2014, 23:14

Baldeagle wrote:The battery that was charged overnight and then stood for an hour was a Yuasa YTX-14BS.
I believe this is the standard, lead-acid type for the Pan.... Bill
That Yuasa is indeed all of the above, including OEM, and it is also AGM. (Both are AGM lead-acid. Neither is true gel.)

Then we would still like to know what the Motobatt voltage is after that battery has sat for a while (with the engine off) with the ignition turned off.

Later, if you have your own battery charger, please repeat what you did for the Yuasa, but now for the Motobatt.
If you do not have the right charger, I might not buy one now because your high-voltage situation should cause your battery to become charged whenever the engine is run for a while when the voltage is over 14 volts. (But with the engine off for a long period, the battery will start to discharge a bit even if the ignition is not turned on.)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Footnote: Comparing the Yuasa's 13.4 volts with the Motobatt's 12.6 volts reported elsewhere, now you see why I was not impressed with that Motobatt voltage.
'Tis not its looks, but how it cooks.
And I've found that most liter size Pans, when warmed up, cook well.
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David W
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Re: Battery Basics for the Gel case (if there really is one)

Postby Baldeagle » 30 Nov 2014, 00:16

I'll charge the Motobatt Battery tomorrow night (Sunday), and check it on Monday after it has sat for a while (1 hour minimum).

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