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Pocket Rocket Charger

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Howdy folks, well I got some sad news about a pocket rocket charger that happened the other day. Last week I came back from a trip to the field and was charging my batteries in the vehicle, then moved the charger to the wall, 110v plug and went on about my business. With-in a few minutes of plugging it in, it decided to spark the outlet and burn up inside. Luckily, I smelled something pretty fast, but not too fast as the unit was 'toast' literally. Not too sure what had happened or why it decided to do what it did, but glad it did it while I was awake, instead of when I normally charge them at night while sleeping. Here is a pic of the inside, even though it has no user parts on the inside. I'm not too sure if it was something with going from the truck to the wall that may have caused it. This unit was only two months old too. Just be careful when charging. Jason ;)


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That is scary -- especially since my track record for bad luck includes one of those Aerostars that spontaneously went up in flames right in my own driveway. I'm thankful that you caught it when you did. I generally only use the pocket rocket 12V automobile charger mode while I am in the field. When at home or at a motel I use a different type of AC charger [available from Doc in Las Vegas]. I purchased the newer AC charger about a year ago after I noticed the pocket rocket AC mode failing to fully charge my LI batteries. I always have gotten a full charge from the pocket rocket 12V mode, but this is the first time I've heard of the AC mode melting down while plugged in.

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MN, yeah not sure what went wrong, but the smell was one that stayed in the house for about two days. Electrical burns and components burning make a bad combo smell to say the least. I have another one that I got from Doc a few years ago, an it might be giving me the same problem with not charging them (batteries) completely too. I have several batts, that will quit after only a few house in the field. I try to rotate them out often and buy new ones every few months or so, just to have a 'good' batt on hand. Jason ;)

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WOW Jay, you're not suppossed to let the smoke out of electrical items !!!!

Seriously thanks for the heads up, I have a setup with 2 new batts about 2 months old and 1 of the batts will only give me 3 hours use I'm wondering if the batt could be causing the charger to short out.

Sounds like you have a batt thats not up to par also. I sent the serial #'s in for them to refer to asking if the battery can be replaced because of such short usage on it.

The other new batt will give me 6-7 hours.

Keep me posted to know how you make out with this situation I'm gonna have to keep an eye :whaaaa: on the charging from now on, or else I'll be guilty of letting the smoke out too!!! Or worse smokin the house down.

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Folks while I was in the States in July I bought my Pocket Rocket system from Doc...

for years I would charge my Extreme and 3000 in the truck while on the way back

from beeping....so when I got the PR system I mounted one of the chargers in the PU

also....didn't work out very well...and I was only getting 2:15 minutes from the

batteries...emailed Doc and he sent two new batt. immediately....their a few grams

heavier(no problem)and they last about six hours...just when my a$$ is dragging...

but then I started having problems with the chargers not making contact where the two

little probes go into the battery....I would have to put paper or some other object

between the batt. and the charger...so I asked Doc if it was possible for me to buy

just the top part of the charger(it's two pieces)and he said no...so in OCt. I bought

from Doc two more chargers...didn't seem fair since I waited three months to ask Doc

to cover them with a warranty....just received them last week(43 days to get here)...

a lot of rain(today is 6 straight days)so I only re-charged my two normal batts and

also the two little 2:15 minute batts that have just been sitting in the house...took

them quite awhile to charge so guess they weren't fully charged either...

The Pocket Rocket system is a great idea and the chargers are great in the fact that

they are 100-240v and 12v all in one little pkg.....but the chargers are a problem

that should be addressed....

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Call me old fashioned, but I like the stock LI battery system from Minelab. Having a cord is no problem for me and the battery will always out last me... Never have run one down and it's recharged in a little over an hour. :twocents:

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Call me old fashioned, but I like the stock LI battery system from Minelab. Having a cord is no problem for me and the battery will always out last me... Never have run one down and it's recharged in a little over an hour. :twocents:

Old what??? Oh now I see...not what I thought!!! Anyway good

point Bill...that's what I carry in the PU as a back-up and

another good thing about the Minelab is the charger is built in...and if it's an GP4500 it has a built in sound enhancher!!

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For clarification, my prior comments above relate to my original GP Extreme, not my new [for me] 4500 which, of course, uses an LI battery supplied by Minelab with a built-in charging circuit. For those reading this thread who are not familiar with the Minelab PI detectors, the older Minelab PIs through the 3500 model, of course, came stock with the 5 lb lead acid 6V battery, a "monkey dance" harness which has all the connectors [including the head phones] in the small of your back where you can not see them or easily reach them, and a curly cord to connect you to your unit [which, in creosote or similar brushy areas] likes to snag wherever possible [and which itself may induce falsing, especially on steep hillsides, if it swings too close to your search coil]. An after market product called the Pocket Rocket eliminates the 5 lb weight, the curly cord and the monkey dancing routines by enabling the user to attach the power supply directly to the side of the detector. The P/R contains a voltage regulator which maintains the required voltage from a much lighter weight lithium ion battery. These LI batteries can be charged either from a 12V source or an AC source. Apparently the AC circuitry of the older charger units such as the one JayRay mentions above may have issues relating to incomplete charges and/or, now, possibly a fire danger. The newer 4000, 4500, 4800 and 5000 models run on a different voltage and utilize a modern LI battery system [very pricey at around $600 each]. After market P/R systems now are available for these newer models. However, there are low tech ways of just velcro fastening the stock Minelab LI battery to the side of one of the newer models to eliminate the monkey dance and dangly curly cord irritations. Lucky Joe, a friend of mine and a poster on this forum, uses this latter method on his 4500 with good results, especially since both of us employ detecting strategies that require exchanging the PI detector with a GB2 from time to time -- not a simple thing to do if a monkey dance harness is involved and if your joints are 68 years old [like mine, not his].

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I tried a Pocket Rocket system and really liked it for my 3500.

When I moved to the 4000 and on I have preferred the ML batteries.

I too do not mind being tethered to the detector by a cord,

it has never really been an issue.

That stock 3500 ML battery was a form of torture.

My hat is off to anyone who walked around with that thing on their back.

It still makes me shake my head when I think of it.

Happy New Year all,


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Ditto with the 12V charger for the Li batteries. Doc replaced a battery for me but it turned out to be the charger all along. 115V is fine and dandy, 12V wont charge for crap.

I purchased a charger for the Sony cam corder and it is a quality unit that has lasted two years now. It works great on 12V and 115V outlets and I have used the same three Li batteries for over two years now. If I ever need to replace the batteries I will simply go with the Sony batteries instead of the "pocket rocket" batteries, which are simply generic replacements for a Sony camcorder.

The new Li batteries for the DeWalt drills last forever and can be regulated to whatever voltage you need. The chargers are high quality and TOUGH. If I am ever going to do it again I would get a couple of these batteries from Home Depot with a charger and I think you will have a longer lasting, cheaper, and much more reliable system.

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