Jaycar 12v/12amp charger recalled

Submitted: Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 08:50
ThreadID: 29774 Views:4049 Replies:17 FollowUps:17
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Bought a Jaycar MB3612 charger last week to run with my Honda 10i. A mate went to get one yesterday and has been told they are recalled.

Does anyone know the details/danger or otherwise?.... I am waiting for a call back from Jaycar.

regards
JohnN
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Reply By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 09:40

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 09:40
Told you so :)

They put about 120V AC across the battery neg. lead and the case (earth) of the charger. It (usually :) won't kill you but it does provide a bit of a tickle.

Poor design of the switch mode is the problem - shame, damn good charger - they can't have mine back though :)

Mike Harding

mike_harding@fastmail.fm
AnswerID: 149101

Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:25

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:25
Quote: "It (usually :) won't kill you but it does provide a bit of a tickle."

Are you blokes SERIOUS!!!!!?????

You'd rather risk getting fried than take the stupid, el-cheapo chitty thing back to jaycar and get it fixed/refund or whatever????

Sorry lads, I simply don't understand the logic......

Good luck and I hope you're life insurance is paid up to date.

Cheers

Roachie
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Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:34

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:34
>Are you blokes SERIOUS!!!!!?????

Don't lecture me sonny. I've been designing this sort of stuff for over 30 years - I understand the risks.

Mike Harding
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Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:00

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:00
Good for you Mike............I just hope they're not your famous last words.

Kinda reminds me about a series of ad's on the telly years ago for King Gee overalls (from memory)........the line I still use when I see someone doing something that looks a bit risky is......: "I know boats" (the bloke in the ad said that just before he stepped off the pier into the small boat, and proceeded to go right through the hull.

Mike, please don't take offence, I wasn't intending to lecture you; I am simply concerned for your welfare and that of others on this forum. I realise you are well versed in all matters regarding electricity......but my point is; why go looking for trouble?

Cheers mate

Roachie
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FollowupID: 402266

Follow Up By: crfan - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:14

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:14
Hi Mike do you know if they are fixing them or replacing them or just giving your money back ?
I have bought about six of the 12v and 24v ones
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FollowupID: 402269

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:38

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:38
Roachie:
>I am simply concerned for your welfare and that of
>others on this forum.

Thank you - but I have been working on everything from 3V3 microprocessors to 22KV distributions systems to 100KV cable testers and power supplies for a very long time now and am still alive :) Despite, I might add, at a guess after 30 or 40 240V shocks over the years. The thing which really does scare me is high power lasers.

Other people are grown adults and will make their own minds up regarding the dangers, or otherwise, of this product.

It's not a death trap and is going to sneak up on you in the night and kill you! There is just a bit of mains leakage to the switch mode ground - so don't touch the neg. lead when the thing is connected to the mains - you manage not to stick your hand in the engine fan when the bonnet is raised don't you?

crfan:
>Hi Mike do you know if they are fixing them or replacing them or
>just giving your money back ?

No idea, I'm afraid - I didn't even know they were doing a recall - I just knew that sooner or later they would have to :) They should have done it some months ago.

I suspect a fix would be too expensive so they'll probably refund. But there is a good chance someone will kick the original designers butt and make him do it again, properly this time! As he should have done in the first place.

And a side note to Jaycar management: get your act together boys - don't you do _any_ safety tests on mains based equipment? Does it even meet emissions standards for Oz? (Like hell it does, I suspect!).

Mike Harding
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Follow Up By: Willem - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 20:36

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 20:36
"a very long time now and am still alive :) Despite, I might add, at a guess after 30 or 40 240V shocks over the years"

So thats your problem.....hahahahahahahahaha
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Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 21:01

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 21:01
Oh well...

I imagine you would be intimately familiar with Electric Convulsive Therapy Willem... hahahahahahahahaha

Mike Harding
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Reply By: JohnN - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:12

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:12
Gday Mike
I'm happy with it too for the price. Have used it on my boat and 4wd and wont be giving it back.
Now the dumb question... apart from not touching the case and neg at same time; when using it to charge a battery, do I need to make sure unit is not touching anything possibly connected to neg battery terminal eg. resting it on the bullbar while it charges??
cheers
JohnN
AnswerID: 149102

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:31

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 10:31
>apart from not touching the case and neg at same time

Exactly; that's the one you should NOT do. Or any _other_ earth and the negative terminal - a stone floor in bare feet for example - assuming the unit is connected to the household mains supply.

>do I need to make sure unit is not touching anything possibly
>connected to neg battery terminal eg. resting it on the bullbar
>while it charges??

As there is a potential difference between the neg. lead and the case if you were to allow them to become connected then a current would flow between the two - this may, or may not, cause damage to the charger or blow an internal fuse etc. As I don't know the exact internal circuit configuration I can't say for sure if damage would eventuate. To be on the safe side I would ensure the charger case is never connected to it's neg. lead. So don't put it on the bullbar without a thick rag or piece of wood etc. underneath.

Mike Harding
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Reply By: ImEasy - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:10

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:10
To be on the safe side I would ensure the charger case is never connected to it's neg. lead. So don't put it on the bullbar without a thick rag or piece of wood etc. underneath.

To be on the safe side, take the bloody thing back.

Recalls arent just for the hell of it.
AnswerID: 149105

Reply By: Darian (formerly Banjo) - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:35

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 11:35
With zillions being spent on designing for safety all over the world every day, I reckon there should be wide support for it here. As I understand it, the main safety agenda for manufacturers is to design products to be safe for complete technical novices. If the novices follow the directions for safe use, they are entitled to complete safety while knowing nothing at all about the technicalities of the operation. Mike's view must be flawed, because it takes no account of others who may use his charger. If you can get a boot from freely accessible parts of that charger, its a dud..... Darian.......formerly Banjo (the first).....probably soon to be "sonny" also.....onya Roachie :-0)
AnswerID: 149108

Reply By: Member - Drew T (VIC) - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 13:07

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 13:07
i bought a 2-stage 10A switch-mode charger from SuperCheap on the weekend ($139). anybody have opinions as to whether they are any good or not?
AnswerID: 149124

Reply By: Shaker - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 14:03

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 14:03
Fuuny thing is, I see that these chargers are still on the Jaycar website, with no mention of a recall!
AnswerID: 149142

Follow Up By: JohnN - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 14:14

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 14:14
Yes but they are showing out of stock.... and when you phone them they will tell you of the recall.

JohnN
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 10:23

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 10:23
I have spoken to Jaycar, funnily enough the recall is wholesale only, not retail!
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Reply By: MartyB - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 14:35

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 14:35
Mike Harding,
Your comments would be the stupidest comments I have ever read.

"Don't lecture me sonny. I've been designing this sort of stuff for over 30 years - I understand the risks."

Imagine this, You are standing in court at an inquest for the death of a child from one of these items. The magistrate has a copy of this thread and you are trying to explain why you advised everyone to use them because you know the risks even though the distributer has recalled them because of safety concerns.

Even worse what if it is your child or grandchild who is in the morgue.

Everyone, don't use them, take them back. Why has there been a safety recall? Because they are unsafe.
120v can be lethal.

from Marty.
AnswerID: 149148

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 15:33

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 15:33
>Mike Harding, Your comments would be the stupidest
>comments I have ever read.

Oh no not at all - you should see some of my other posts!

>you advised everyone to use them

I did? Perhaps you would be good enough to quote where I did that?

>Why has there been a safety recall?

I can only guess the recall is associated with safety - perhaps you would share with us the further information you clearly have given your certainty in this regard?

>Because they are unsafe.

Are they? In what way are they unsafe? And how do you know that? Or are you just going on what I said?

>120v can be lethal.

Where did you get that figure Marty? Or are you just quoting me?

Before you get your knickers in a twist any further Marty and hysterically turn a minor issue into one that is responsible for the deaths of millions and demonise me in the process perhaps you would take a look at thread 28956 on this site and, in particular, my post of the 18/12/05 where I highlighted the issue with these units and iirc I also raised concerns about them some weeks or months earlier.

Mike Harding
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Follow Up By: Boc1971 - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 23:31

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 23:31
amperage is the killer --- i have been hit with 10 000 v at 00002 amp burnt my fingers but didnt kill me ....

got hit with 415 volt once -- this hurt a HELL of a lot more .... that felt like someone took to me with a baseball bat

Boc
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Follow Up By: Pajman Pete (SA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 17:20

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 17:20
Like they said on my basic electrical course -
it's the volts that jolts and the mills that kills.

Pete
Any mug can be uncomfortable out bush

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Reply By: MartyB - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 17:10

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 17:10
Mike.

>Oh no not at all - you should see some of my other posts!
Good point.

>>you advised everyone to use them

>I did? Perhaps you would be good enough to quote where I did that?

Right here.
It's not a death trap and is going to sneak up on you in the night and kill you! There is just a bit of mains leakage to the switch mode ground - so don't touch the neg. lead when the thing is connected to the mains - you manage not to stick your hand in the engine fan when the bonnet is raised don't you?

>>Why has there been a safety recall?

>I can only guess the recall is associated with safety - perhaps you would share with us the further information you clearly have given your certainty in this regard?

Sorry I don’t have any further info. But I have heard that someone who should know better is telling people it is ok to use a device that has exposed 120v.

>>120v can be lethal.

>Where did you get that figure Marty? Or are you just quoting me?
No I am not just quoting you. Yes 120v can be lethal.

>Before you get your knickers in a twist any further Marty and hysterically turn a minor issue into one that is responsible for the deaths of millions and demonise me in the process perhaps you would take a look at thread 28956 on this site and, in particular, my post of the 18/12/05 where I highlighted the issue with these units and iirc I also raised concerns about them some weeks or months earlier.

Ok I will untwist my knickers. That feels better.
I still say you are not smart making these comments. Hope you never have to explain them in court.

Everyone else, don't use these chargers. Especially if any kids are around. This is advise from a tech with only 27 years experience, as opposed to Mike's 30 plus years.

from Marty.

AnswerID: 149172

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 17:17

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 17:17
Have a glass of wine and a rest Marty.

Mike Harding
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Reply By: Charlie - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 18:16

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 18:16
So we are are talking about a second recall ? Mine seems to fuction OK,I'll take my chances I guess.
Regards Charlie
AnswerID: 149189

Reply By: Member - Crazy Dog (QLD) - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 18:59

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 18:59
Mike -

I too have been involved in the HV game, electrical and electronics and as a qualified electrician and electronics tech (all my working life) like I assume you are.... I am sorry to see that some of your statements were possibly taken out of context.

I am just on 60 so I too can make statements about how long I have been doing what I do.

I am just disappointed in the vitriolic words being flung around the forum by all and sundry. Agro by forum etc ....

The point of the challenge I think was not your skills or integrety but the fact that there are many people who read the forum both members and non members who are not skilled in making a judgement like you or I can.

Those that challenged your statements have done it with the right intentions.

May I suggest that rather than "adults can decide" if they want to keep the device, suggest returning it for refund or repair. That way unskilled people are not led to believe that if a few people say it is not a problem then "I should be OK as well".

What you or I do is our best call but for most it could be a real issue.

Keep up the good info like this - it is always valuable to know about problems with equipment that we all use in our search for the perfect oasis....
AnswerID: 149198

Reply By: symes - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 20:38

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 20:38
hi can i ask why u need the charger when the EUI has on built in or am i missing something
AnswerID: 149213

Reply By: symes - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 21:24

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 21:24
doesnt the EU10 have battery charger built in why do you need this ??
AnswerID: 149224

Follow Up By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 22:44

Tuesday, Jan 17, 2006 at 22:44
G'day Symes,
I have a Yammie 1kva, very similar to the Honda, so perhaps I can give you my own reasons for using a "normal" 240volt charger.......indeed, I have never even removed the short lead for the 12volt charger on the Yamaha from it's plastic bag!!!

1. The 12volt lead seems to be quite short. This would mean placing the gennie close to the vehicle/van etc during the charging, which is usually where we hang-out....so noise is a factor.

2. In my case, I have 2 batteries in the 4x4 and 2 in the camper trailer. I also have on-board battery chargers in both 4x4 and camper. Using the 240volt outlet, I can charge the whole bang lot all at once, as well as taking the load off the batteries, as the fridges are also running off the 240volt at the same time, meaning that the fridges aren't trying to drain the batteries as quickly as I'm putting the power in.

3. The nominal output of the 12volt side of the gennie is (I think), 8 amps. However, a lot of blokes have chargers rated at 12, 15, 20 or even 30 amps.......obviously these chargers would get the batteries back up to spec more quickly than the 12 volt output of the gennie.

I generally locate the gennie as far away from camp as possible, behind a tree etc. I run a long extension lead to the campsite and plug in a power board, then have another lead going to the 4x4. Other people in our group often plug their gear into the power board too.....it would make a sparky whince to see how many power boards and double adaptors we manage to cobble together.
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FollowupID: 402408

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 02:00

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 02:00
Folks,

A little bit of friendly advice. Take notice of what Roachie has stated.
Your life is worth more than the price of a piece of electrical crap.

It is not necessarily the voltage level that kills.

One of the first things I learnt at Trade School 35 years ago, is that it is the electrical CURRENT that kills you, not the voltage that it is flowing at.

As little as 10mA will create a "can't let go situation as your muscles contract.
As little as 100mA can cause your heart to go into Ventricular fibrillation and this kills you stone dead.
Bill


I'm diagonally parked in a parallel Universe!

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AnswerID: 149289

Reply By: Mike Harding - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 08:02

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 08:02
It isn't the voltage which kills.
It isn't the current which kills.
It is the _power_ which kills and power is the product of voltage and current (voltage x current).

This is why you can touch your car's HT ignition system which is at about 25,000 volts and it won't kill you because it's current capability is very low. Equally it's why you can touch your car's battery which has a current capability of a few thousand amps but a very low voltage.

Now: try touching a supply of 25,000 volts with a current capability of a few thousand amps and see what happens?

Mike Harding

PS. Modern electronic ignition systems have a higher energy capability than the old "points" type so it's probably not a good idea to touch them.
AnswerID: 149303

Reply By: Charlie - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 10:26

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 10:26
Getting back to the original question this battery charger was quickly withdrawn from sale after it's first release and now the second release is supposidly withdrawn as well. I would guess thousands are out there having been sold though Jaycar and Bias Boating wouldn't we expect some type of media release if there is a real problem?
Regards Charlie
AnswerID: 149346

Reply By: JohnN - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 12:29

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 12:29
For what it's worth....

Just spoke with a Jaycar Tech and he said the problem was that after charging a battery, the capacitor retains some charge and so if you touch the terminals you will get a "tingle".... which he claimed you would notice but not harmfull.

If you are tech minded you can mod the charger to discharge this or you can disconnect the clips from the battery without touching the metal and the capacitor will discharge itself over a short time.

This is as advised by an anonymous tech on the other end of the phone. I'm not recommending you do or dont act on this advise...etc etc yada yada. I'm satisfied... weigh it up for yourself!!!

cheers
JohnN
AnswerID: 149370

Follow Up By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 17:38

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 17:38
My "tingle" was from the case!
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FollowupID: 402664

Reply By: Shaker - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 17:46

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 17:46
Copy of email sent to Jaycar today!

Subject: MB3612 Battery Charger Recall??

Sir/Madam,

I am extremely anxious to know what is happening in regard to the recall of the subject product, linked below:

http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=MB3612&CATID=18&keywords=&SPECIAL=&form=CAT&ProdCodeOnly=&Keyword1=&Keyword2=&pageNumber=&priceMin=&priceMax=&SUBCATID=295

I am led to believe that these have been subject to a "wholesale recall" but not a general end user recall, WHY NOT?
These chargers have a known problem which I believe is a current leakage between the negative lead & the case of the unit.

This could be a very serious problem with severe ramifications if it continues to be ignored, not only in the obvious case of personal injury or death, but as many of these units would have no doubt been fitted to permanently moored boats, they WILL cause considerable damage to steel vessels & will also cause extreme degradation of the sacrificial anodes on all permanently moored vessels.

I have one these chargers permanently fitted to a camper trailer & have in fact received a minor "tingle", which at the time, in my ignorance, I put down to damp atmospheric conditions.
Do these chargers meet all relevant Australian Safety Standards & are they so certified? If so could you please supply the relevant details.
Please advise by return email what Jaycar will be doing to assist the purchasers of these faulty & potentially dangerous battery chargers.

Regards,

Paul *******
AnswerID: 149438

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 19:01

Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 at 19:01
Why has this thread now failed to column wrap correctly in both IE
and Firefox? A problem I have seen here a number of times before?

It makes a thread very difficult as one now has to scroll both up and
down and left and right.

Mike Harding
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FollowupID: 402693

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