High-G FJR Junkie!
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Millgrove, ON, CA
I have arguments on both sides.... the pluses are weight, mostly reliable cranking (depending on temperature), and perhaps longevity (unknown for the most part).
As for the weight, does anybody really think that's a real practical advantage on a 650 lb. bike... on a race or dirt bike it makes sense if you're squeezing pounds.
I was given a Shorai some 5 years ago, my buddy (Ohio) got tired of it not cranking when the temps got below 40. Another buddy an I were on a trip to WV in September, it got close to freezing and his FJR wouldn't start until we warmed it up (leaving the ignition on for a while didn't work) with charge using my battery tender lead for 10 minutes. I took the gifted Shorai in my top box on trips, once used it to boost an FJR... didn't work, it was 40 degrees out. Another buddy with an ST13... got rid of the Shorai after one year because of cold start issues. My only advice here is, keep it warmed up on a charger overnight, it will likely be OK on a cold day after that ('cuz you charge it while riding, keeping it awake).
I know of a couple of Shorai's that totally died when they were discharged to dead (key left on). Unrevivable. At least my power tool lithiums have circuitry protection to not allow them to go below 4V, perhaps another brand like EarthX or Battery Tender does. I'd do some research before buying.... don't leave your key on accidentally.
As for longevity, I haven't heard any reports of 5 plus year old lithiums, but I expect they will go at least that long if treated right. As for the cost/benefit side, I can buy two Yuasa's for the price of a lithium, and my Yuasa's usually last me 5+ years... that average will go down if you live in a hot climate regardless of battery....
I still have this Shorai and use it as a portable power supply in the shop or to boost my lawn tractor that has a failing lead-acid after 7 years... gotta get a new one! It sits and doesn't lose charge (not hooked up to anything so no parasitic draw), and when I need to charge it, I just put it on the battery tender. It's about 7 years old now, but it hasn't had a rough life.
The lithium technology is great, no doubt, if you can rationalize it in your situation, go for it.
Keep yer stick on the ice....
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