Today, we are releasing our new line of lithium motorcycle batteries: Pulse IPT. We are really excited about this new battery, because it is a substantial step forward in every way. This post will help explain what all is new and why this is such an important step forward for lithium motorcycle batteries.
At Full Spectrum Power, we have been building lithium motorcycle batteries for nearly a decade. Time flies when you are having fun, right? Well, during that time our Pulse batteries have had four major product revisions, and a lot more small changes. With each release, we tried to make the product stronger, lighter, and better performing. We have focused almost exclusively on racing; as racers ourselves, we know how important a battery can be.
With our Pulse IPT, we are now building a stronger, lighter, better battery for racers- but also a battery that is much better suited to street riders, off-road and ATV riders, and everyone else with a powersports vehicle.
Over the years, we have heard lots of candid feedback about our batteries, and about lithium batteries generally. We found these five things were the major issues which needed to be addressed, in order for lithium to gain a wider audience:
1. Standard charger compatibility
2. Direct replacement sizes for all models
3. Over charge and over discharge protection
4. Reset feature after over discharge cutoff
5. Price competitive with other high-end batteries
The Pulse IPT does address those major issues and has clever solutions for each.
For years, we have told everyone that they needed a lithium specific charger to charge their batteries. We covered this extensively in blog posts, on forums, in magazine articles, and in direct conversation with customers. With the Pulse IPT's battery management system, using a lithium specific charger isn’t required- but it is still recommended. In other words, whereas a non-lithium charger could have damaged or killed one of our old batteries, the consequence now is that the battery won’t be as carefully attended to during storage.
So, for everyone who didn’t want to use lithium because they needed to buy a charger also, this is the time to upgrade.
Direct replacement sizing was also a big issue. We designed our older batteries to be as small as possible. So, for racers and custom bike builders this was ideal. For everyone else, it seems this made installation more difficult. So, we now have enough size choices that finding a direct fit replacement is much easier. Our Pulse IPT comes in 14 different case sizes, and each of those case sizes offer multiple power options. So, if you need a YTZ7 size battery with 420 cranking amps, we have it. If you need a YTX12 sized battery, we have that too, with four different power options; from 160 to 720 cranking amps. We even have 90-degree mount brackets for those bikes with side mount terminals. For those rare cases where we don’t have a direct fit case, we will supply high density foam to attach to the battery, taking up the gap.
We spent a lot of time designing and testing our IPT battery management system (BMS), over the last few years. We have a few blog posts about the functions of a BMS, but in short, they are meant to control the behavior of the battery; voltage and current threshold management, cell balancing, heat management, etc., are all handled by the IPT BMS. This means that it is much more difficult to damage the battery from a faulty electrical system, or by accidentally draining the battery. Now, these things are a relic of the past.
The most important feature of the IPT is the reset function. It works like this: if you manage to drain the battery by leaving the key on and walking away, or having an alarm on for a few weeks, etc., the IPT will cut off power at about 10% remaining capacity. This has just saved your battery from a likely death.
Here is the cool part; when you come out to the garage and realize you drained the battery, you can get the bike started again without needing a charger. See that blue "IPT Reset" button on the top? Well, press that and you will have enough power to get your bike started one last time. It works.
Being price competitive is a difficult thing, because there are so many variables. Price competitive with “what” exactly? Well, we are not price competitive with a $40 Walmart replacement battery. That isn’t going to happen. After all, we are building the best lithium motorcycle battery on earth, and the $40 replacement lead acid battery at Walmart is not the best lead acid battery. That isn’t an insult, it’s an honest assessment. So, we are price competitive relative to the best batteries in the market; Odyssey, Yuasa, and others like them. And where we are more expensive, we are offering much more performance, features, and functionality.
For example, our YTX10 replacement size battery is $169, weighs 7lbs less, and has a BMS that makes it almost impossible to drain. Can a Yuasa prevent itself from being drained? Not that we’re aware of.
So, today we forge ahead into the future of lithium motorcycle batteries. As we have for the last decade, we are building our batteries in Virginia; we are providing unparalleled technical support/product selection advice and we are here to help everyone switch to lithium batteries.