Anitgravity Micro-Start -- FAIL

  • Hi Guest, you may choose a LIGHT or DARK theme that works best for you with the "Style Chooser" button at the bottom left on this page!

Traveler I

1,747
Phoenix, AZ
I've owned 2 Antigravity Micro-Start XP-10s. Both have suffered catastrophic failures.

I first heard about the Micro-Start in Overland Journal somewhere around 2014. Since I run solo a lot of the time, being able to jump start myself was a useful capability. I had an old jump starter with a full size battery, but it was obviously heavy , cumbersome, couldn't charge electronics off of it, nor could I recharge it in the field. So the Micro-Start looked like a good option.

Slightly over a year from purchase the lithium battery swelled to the point of splitting the case open. I contacted Antigravity and they blamed some bad parts they'd purchased but replaced the unit. I had purchased another unit (different brand) because i had a long planned solo trip that began before they could get me a replacement, so the new XP-10 stayed in the box for more than a year. I eventually gifted the replacement I'd bought to a friend and broke out the new XP-10.

Well just over a year and guess what? Swells up and pops the case. Never used except to recharge every 6 months or so. Called Antigravity. They said they won't stand behind it. Suggested I not leave it in my vehicle since "the inside of your vehicle might get warm." I live in AZ, so yeah it dang sure might get warm. But my truck 4R is garaged if it isn't on a good trip so it isn't THAT warm. And I really don't need to jump off anything in my den.

Bottomline - Don't buy their products. They are expensive with a known deficiency that seemingly is not suffered by their competitors.

Would like to hear what others have used successfully as a jump starter / power bank.

IMG_0344.JPG
 
  • Like
Reactions: Boort

NovaBound

US East Region Member Rep
Member

Pathfinder I

3,842
Alexandria, Virginia, USA
First Name
Kevin
Last Name
Nova
Member #

10331

I've owned 2 Antigravity Micro-Start XP-10s. Both have suffered catastrophic failures.

I first heard about the Micro-Start in Overland Journal somewhere around 2014. Since I run solo a lot of the time, being able to jump start myself was a useful capability. I had an old jump starter with a full size battery, but it was obviously heavy , cumbersome, couldn't charge electronics off of it, nor could I recharge it in the field. So the Micro-Start looked like a good option.

Slightly over a year from purchase the lithium battery swelled to the point of splitting the case open. I contacted Antigravity and they blamed some bad parts they'd purchased but replaced the unit. I had purchased another unit (different brand) because i had a long planned solo trip that began before they could get me a replacement, so the new XP-10 stayed in the box for more than a year. I eventually gifted the replacement I'd bought to a friend and broke out the new XP-10.

Well just over a year and guess what? Swells up and pops the case. Never used except to recharge every 6 months or so. Called Antigravity. They said they won't stand behind it. Suggested I not leave it in my vehicle since "the inside of your vehicle might get warm." I live in AZ, so yeah it dang sure might get warm. But my truck 4R is garaged if it isn't on a good trip so it isn't THAT warm. And I really don't need to jump off anything in my den.

Bottomline - Don't buy their products. They are expensive with a known deficiency that seemingly is not suffered by their competitors.

Would like to hear what others have used successfully as a jump starter / power bank.

View attachment 65526
Thanks for sharing. I’m in the market for one..... this is valuable information.
 

armourbl

Rank V
Member

Advocate II

1,595
Phoenix, AZ
Member #

11398

I haven't read your post yet, but try emailing them. My first one did this and they sent me a new one even though I was outside of the warranty.

The type of batteries these packs use are very sensitive to nominal voltage. Technically, they aren't really meant to be stored for long periods of time at full charge. They should be kept at a storage charge of 3.2 volts per cell and each cell in the pack should be balanced so they all have the same charge. The chargers that come with the units do not do this, they are not intelligent chargers. There may be something on the circuit board that attempts to balance charge the cells, but there is no storage charge setting.

A damaged cell, either from an impact, bad climate conditions, or just under or over charged or over discharge will cause swelling. A swollen battery can be dangerous. The best way to dispose of them is to let them soak in a very dense salt water solution. Do this outside and well away from your house. Let it soak in a bucket for a few days then you can throw it away in the normal trash.

You can learn more by studying how people care for their high performance batteries used in the remote control toy arena.

ben
 

armourbl

Rank V
Member

Advocate II

1,595
Phoenix, AZ
Member #

11398

Another note, if you can find a replacement battery pack you can simply replace the battery. It will have to be the same dimensions, cell count, mAh rating, etc. These can be had from online sellers from China where they are manufactured. You'll also need to pay attention to the why it is connected inside. On the one I had, they used the balance charging cable to connect it to the main board. These are pretty standard. You won't want one with larger positive and negative leads designed for remote control cars. Just the small white connector with four wires going to it. There is a ground, and one positive wire for each cell -- typically a 3 cell pack.

I stopped thinking of these as a long term investment after my first one died. It died after two years of use, which is a pretty good run. At about $100, they are simply cheap insurance.

I'm in Arizona as well, and I'm going to stop storing mine in the Jeep during the summer. Been a thought in the back of my mind, but now I have good motivation.

ben
 
  • Like
Reactions: AZ WANDERING BEAR

Traveler I

1,747
Phoenix, AZ
Thanks Ben. Good information.

I did call Antigravity and had a long conversation on this last one. Mostly I asked questions. They gave dodgy answers. I use quite a few other lithium based power packs for various hobbies and work and have had zero issues. 0 for 2 just doesn't work for me. I am done with them.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Boort

HKLover

Rank VI
Member

Pathfinder I

2,669
Ohio/Tenn
Member #

7170

I have a NOCO GB 150 that I can also use to jump start my F350 that has the 6.7L diesel in it. I am going to Moab in about 2 months with my Jeep and will be bringing it along since I won't have enough time to do my Genesis Dual Battery system install before leaving. I am running an ARB 50 fridge so I will have the jump starter with me just in case. I have run the fridge in my Jeep while at home for a week without problem but better to be prepared than have to pay for an expensive tow or jump start in the middle of nowhere. I think that even if I did have the dual battery system installed I'd still bring the NOCO. It takes up so little space that it would be worth it. I have never had the chance nor the need to use it yet. With any luck, I never will.
 

Will I Am

Rank III
Member

Advocate I

614
Layton, Utah
Member #

11329

I have a ZETA 50420 jumper / USB charger that is going on 4 years old now and it has started several boats 1 large diesel engine truck in middle of winter and a few cars oh yes charges my phone many times with no issues except when I forgot to charge it yeah well what can I expect then? I got this from a Matco tool truck and never let me down.
 

Attachments

Don Meredith

Rank IV
Member

Advocate III

1,174
Greenville, SC
Member #

2304

I own and love my Schumacher SL1. Be careful going with an unknown brand on these battery packs. They're designed to dump a lot of current in a short amount of time. If they are low quality or designed poorly this could mean fire.


CapturFiles.png
 
  • Like
Reactions: Desert Runner

Jaycee

Rank I

Traveler I

I had the first gen xp-10 and the pack also swelled up. Not the the extent of busting the seam on case. It saw little use and was kept in doors out of harsh climate. I didn't bother calling in as the unit is several years old but this company will never see another dime of my money. Do yourself a favor and just buy the Harbor Freight one its on sale right now for $60 bux.
 

Desert Runner

Rank VI
Member

Pathfinder I

3,934
Southern Nevada
First Name
Jerold
Last Name
F.
Member #

14991

Ham Callsign
GMRS=WREA307
I own and love my Schumacher SL1. Be careful going with an unknown brand on these battery packs. They're designed to dump a lot of current in a short amount of time. If they are low quality or designed poorly this could mean fire.


View attachment 67274
I will check this one out. Have used other schumacher battery smart trickle chargers with good results. Need one with enough.....uumppphh for a a dual battery 6.6 diesel. I need a minimum 800 amp version.
 

Desert Runner

Rank VI
Member

Pathfinder I

3,934
Southern Nevada
First Name
Jerold
Last Name
F.
Member #

14991

Ham Callsign
GMRS=WREA307
So i went on Amazon, and read the reviews. The SL-1 gets reviews all over the place. Good, bad, although compared to other brands, it falls on the positive side, more than the negative. Kind of a $$$ gamble, as when you need it, YOU NEED IT. But as a backup to jumper cables, it might be just the ticket. MMM....will have to ponder these. If anyone has a opinion or actual experience with them, chime in please. As others have mentioned, the quality for this type of equipment is all over the place.