|Re: Spice series issues|
Message #9 Posted by Michael de Estrada on 28 Sept 2009, 10:27 p.m.,
in response to message #8 by Howard Jones
From what I can tell, a typical alkaline AA cell is 50.5mm tall, whereas a NiCd flat top AA is 48mm, so the difference is more like 2.5mm. Pushing the battery contacts an extra 0.5mm isn't going to hurt them, but an extra 2.5mm probably will. Even if you pound the positive tip all the way in, the cell will still be longer, because the body itself is also longer.
The battery contact design on the Spices is about as stupid as it gets, because they are almost guaranteed to break after a number of battery removals and insertions, unless the user is extremely careful and gentle. The contact has a very sharp bend, such that the material has already been taken past the elastic limit (yield point), and just a few stress reversals will break it off at that location. All HP had to do was form it with a gradual bend, and this failure would not occur. Also, the rivetted connection with the circuit board tends to get loose over time, resulting in a bad electrical connection. Even after HP fixed the solderless design issues, they still retained this faulty battery contact design, so finding a good Spice of any vintage remains a challenge.