How to change the batteries on Spykee, the robot.
In the video below, we hack into Spykee to attach new leads which will later allow for the connection of an external battery pack. We also connect a multimeter to monitor the battery voltage. We connect a 12V battery, charged with a solar panel, for testing. Yes, Spykee works on 12V and could be off-the-grid!
VIDEO: Verifying Spykee can run on 12V
Next, we connected a new external battery pack that uses standard AA rechargeable batteries. Nothing proprietary here. We made the new battery pack and now Spykee is better than new. His new external AA battery pack has a higher charge capacity than the original pack that came from the manufacturer. The original pack was rated at 1,800 mAh while my new home-made replacement battery is rated at 2,400 mAh. The batteries I chose are Imedion Low-Discharge AA batteries made by Powerex. See how it works in the video below.
VIDEO: Spykee gets new battery pack with no tether.
Testing the Original Battery Pack
I tried freezing the original batteries that came with Spykee. That improved the battery voltage, but was not enough of an improvement to get Spykee moving.
The video below shows the freezing process and how freezing increased the voltage of the batteries.
Results of Freezing Battery
VIDEO: Freezing Spykee’s original batteries and Connecting to Charger
Disassembly of the original Spykee battery pack
When I took the pack apart, I found 2 bad cells and 6 good cells. The good cells could be used for another project.
VIDEO: Salvaging Spykee’s original batteries
I put the two bad cells into my battery charger. One of them charged up. That leaves me with one cell at 0 Volts. I plan to surge it with my solar panel. Spykee’s original batteries will live on in another application.