Battery and Mekamon dead on arrival


#1

Hi,

Just got my Mekamon V1 today, battery wont charge, inserting the battery my Mekamon wont turn on.

Tried charging the battery, and not showing red light to indicate charging.

Its green, yet that cannot be. If it was fully charged would go.

All the charger is showing is green light.

Annoyed as I bought a lemon and just to much and a bug hassle to send back, will cost a small fortune to send it back, so not worth it.


#3

Hi Denodan!

That’s a shame to hear :frowning:

Our support team is pretty great about solving these issues.

Here’s a link to our diagnostics page. If you follow the steps through for battery issues, it’ll run you through some basic tests and if those don’t help, a form to fill out with some details that are helpful for our support team, which should then get back to you pretty quickly :slight_smile:

Sorry for the inconvenience!


#4

Tried the trouble shooting and did not help. So filled in the forum


#5

Hi,

An update, a new battery and charger is on the way to me. Mekamon service is outstanding


#6

Good to hear! :slight_smile:


#7

Great service, battery and charger came today, a week earlier than expected and battery new battery works in robot and this charger is working.

A big thank you to Mekamon for sorting this out, now can use my Mekamon at last.


#8

Hi guys, I have the exact same problem, is there any way you can help me out. I’m also coming to the forums because I contacted Mekamon support 5 days ago and still have not heard anything back after countless times trying the items on the quick fix link. Is there any way I can receive a new battery and charger because this is exactly the problem.


#9

i managed to recover my battery by letting it charge for two days or so, its charging now but its not holding the charge anymore, its draining in a few minutes unfortunatelly.


#10

I think, based on Amazon reviews as well as my own experience, that Mekamon picked duds for all their batteries. Basically, they only worked for about a year or so, then quit working. Those in the warehouses would basically arrive with totally dead batteries. My initial Mekamon worked for a year on the current battery, now that battery is totally gone. It will show green charge and then I put it into Mekamon and it blinks as red. I got a new v2 Mekamon from Amazon, and the same thing is happening with it, making me believe all the batteries are impacted. This is a good lesson to anyone wanting to start a business. Ensure you have a good battery supplier, because all Mekamon are going to be impacted and it makes them not able to be used when the batteries are all dead.

I think that the support isn’t answering anymore because the company is possibly either gone or going to be gone due to all the returns from the battery issues. It’s unfortunate. The cost of the robots plummeted from $350 to $100 and this is likely why.


#11

Actually, the company closed down back in September:
https://techcrunch.com/2019/09/03/reach-robotics-is-closing-up-shop/

I don’t know that the battery issues were a contributing factor, but I speculate that the consumer robot market took a hit with Anki (makers of the Cozmo and Vector robots) shutting down not too long prior, causing investors to be wary. It particularly sucks because Reach Robotics had just started pivoting towards the STEM education market, which had a lot of potential for growth.


#12

There does seem to be something of a trend going on with the batteries but it it is hard to say from a handful of anecdotal appearances of Mekamons on ebay with dead batteries for sure how far the problem extends. There is an independent repair service on ebay as mentioned in another battery thread and I’m also hoping to effect a repair myself. If I manage to pull it off. I’ll do a write up/tutorial but it’s going to be a while because China.

Something on my mind though is what has been causing the dead batteries. I wonder, is it the cells or the charge/discharge circuit? i.e. is it somehow running them dead in storage?

Don’t have any answers yet I’m afraid.


#13

I think the majority of the battery problems people are seeing is with the V1 models, which are now around 3-4 years old. I’m not an expert on Lipos, but I’m sure they degrade over time, and who knows what conditions they were kept in, stored in warehouses and such.


#14

Hi @Benerator first off, my friend wanted to ask about how to get a nice foam case like you have in the photos on this page: https://mekamon.com/community (scroll down). If you could send any info on that, this would be great!

About the batteries, I borrowed one off my friend (who bought a version 2 over Christmas) so I could (more) safely do the firmware update on my v1 (has totally dead cells).

I noticed a couple of odd things about his battery though, when the battery ran out of power (mekamon stopped) I measured the voltage on the contacts. It was something worryingly low like 6.5V iirc. Waaaay too low for a 3S lipo. Most RC folks will say don’t take stuff lower than 3V per cell. I recently read the datasheet for some of the adafruit 1S 1200mAh lipos though that have protection circuits attached and the circuits cut out at 2.5V low, 3.5V high. I think the numbers thrown around by RC folks (3V min, 4.2V max are more about getting absolute maximum longevity/re-use out of cells).

When I charged up my friend’s battery… similarly disturbingly it measured 13+ V on the contacts. Really not sure how it got that high but doesn’t sound good. I’d have thought really a max charge should be 12.6V and definitely not more than 13.5V.

Obs., don’t know what the internal cells were reading before/after the charge (not opened his battery) but I have a feeling he might have one hammered cell. I’d probably have placed a bet on 2 of them being at 3.2V and one being 0.1V

Nothing concrete really in all this. Still don’t really know what causes this behaviour (cells or charge/discharge circuit in the pack). Ideally, I should do some proper monitoring or maybe even try and simulate a battery running down to see where the mekamons are actually cutting off. Same on charging.

Basically, I just logging this stuff while I remember it

Knelf

PS pretty certain RR didn’t change the battery between the v1 and v2. The packs just have a different pace plate screwed on (note that I not actually looked inside a v2 battery though). TBH I’d be interested to know if there is ANY difference between the v1 and v2 mekamons actually? It looks like colour/decals and presence or not of the thing on the light. I did notice the rear lights on the v1 flash though but don’t on the v2.


#16

The case was a customized Nanuk (https://nanukhardcases.com/) flight case that I won in a MekaMon contest last year. They’re limited edition and weren’t sold, I think they only gave them away for promotions.


#17

If you are into DIY, here’s my custom battery Mod.
Pictures attached in the other post.


#18

ah yeh I spotted the competition and that you won later on. Well done! Thanks for the info about the company, even if they don’t sell them, useful to know who makes the nice looking cases generally