NiCad Battery Life ?

I found a batch of Nicad batteries that are over 10 years old that
were never used or charged.
Can they safely hold a charge or should thye be scrapped ?
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I wouldn't trust them to something that could crash and I'm pretty cheap. mk
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I'd check them out on a battery cycler and see if they're still capable of delivering their rated capacity under load. Even if they tested good, I probably wouldn't trust my latest, most favorite project to 10 year old batteries while airborn, but you might find them useful for other applications.
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Ed Paasch
I have a NiCad flight pack that is about 15 years old and works just fine - if you can, do a few charge-discharge cycles and see how many mAh are going and coming out - if it's close to the rating of the cells then you shouldn't have a problem.
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We usually use a discharge of C/5 (or as close as you get) for capacity determination. Depending on how close you want to push it some say 80% of rated is the cut off point for discarding. It kind of depends on the value of the plane. I would want top performance in something I really value and relegate sub par capacity to something I just bang around with.
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Red Scholefield
Condition a battery by charging it at C/10 for at least 18 hours. Monitor to insure that it doesn't overheat (just warm is OK). Then cycle to insure that it reaches it's rated capacity. If it doesn't after 4 cycles dispose of the battery. 4 cycles is my maximum Red may disagree. ;-)
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Ed Forsythe
Different folks have different ideas for older less capable equipment. I cycle my NiCad's about once every 6 months to keep up with their condition because eating aircraft just is not as nice as eating steak. When my batteries drop to less than 90% of rated value, they get replaced rather than moved to a less valuable airframe simply because I really hate seeing my R/C plane flying on its own and will do all I can to prevent that. That is one of the most terrifying sights I know of in this hobby because implicitly other people are in danger and there is nothing I can do about it.
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