From HERE I have some concerns about Lithicore batteries and all six will receive a Do Not Buy recommendation MOOCH Yes, this is a long post. But I have spent a great deal of time on this since February and I wanted to present everything I have found to date. I have been receiving a lot of requests to test Lithicore cells. In February 2019 I started requesting the datasheets and safety documents and began testing after that. I have some concerns about Lithicore and have listed them below. These are merely my personal opinions and thoughts based on my examination and testing of their cells, my conversations with Lithicore, my review of their web site and other social media content, and my discussions with those in the battery industry. Copies of some emails: https://imgur.com/a/ZuuJlIg Here are my concerns... I attempted to contact Lithicore at least four times in February requesting copies of their datasheets and safety documents and was ignored. It was only after two potential customers helped out and requested copies of the documents (datasheets, MSDS * * , and UN38.3 * test reports) for me that Lithicore contacted me. Even then it took weeks and weeks to get all the documents. This really surprised me. I would hope that any company would have all these documents easily accessible by all of the sales reps and be eager to share them to show their commitment to safety and accurate ratings. Especially with fake, overrated, and low grade cells being such a concern for our community. Lithicore said they couldn’t locate the UN38.3 safety test reports they had done earlier so they had their cells retested after I made my request. Why not just contact the lab and have copies of the earlier reports sent? They did eventually send the requested test reports though. I was very surprised to see that their 2500mAh 18650 looks identical to, and performs essentially identical to, the LG HE2/4. Their 3000mAh 18650 looks identical to, and performs essentially identical to, the Samsung 30Q. Their 3500mAh 18650 looks identical to, and performs essentially identical to, the LG MJ1. Does this prove these are “rewrapped” cells? No. But these are concerns because Lithicore told me that they make their own cells using their factory, one they say they own 20% of. It is also a concern because there are “excluded batteries” lists that are part of many Product Liability Insurance (PLI) policies. Accidents involving any of those batteries would not be covered by that policy. Some list LG cells as being excluded. If any company rewraps LG cells (or any others on the list) then any accidents involving those cells might not be covered by that insurance. I’m not able to comment further on Lithicore’s claims of being fully insured and the coverage that offers to the vendors who buy their cells. As I would for any battery wrapping company, I urge you to have your attorney carefully review the policy and any related documents. Ario from Lithicore, who said he(?) was their Director of Operations, told me their cells look and perform the same as Samsung’s, LG’s, etc., because that they use almost the same material supply chain as Samsung, LG, and Panasonic, from the NCA chemistry to the wrappers. Ario said that they learned from those companies and refer to their production processes as well. I have spoken to some people who know a lot more than I do about the battery industry and they say that it is highly improbable to impossible that Lithicore uses the same parts as those manufacturers. Is that proof? No. But it does concern me. If it was true that Lithicore is buying Samsung and LG parts and chemicals for their 18650’s then why buy three different sets of cans and top contacts to create copies of Samsung and LG cells? That just increases costs. Why not just use all the same contacts, cans, etc., for all the Lithicore 18650’s? Then use the different chemicals, metal foils, plastics, etc., inside where it counts. Additionally, all of the China factories already have metal cans and top contacts in stock. Why buy others and spend more just to look just like Samsung and LG cells? This just doesn’t makes sense to me so it is a concern. Lithicore has been telling people that I have tested their cells. In October 2017 I received two unmarked (no printing on the wraps) 21700 cells from Lithicore for confidential testing. They were free to share the results with anyone they wanted to though. Those 21700’s tested out as decent cells but I do not know if they actually used those cells for the 21700’s they are selling now. No other testing was done until after February 2019. None of my recent test results have been shared with Lithicore or have been posted as of July 18, 2019. Lithicore’s Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)*** list identical chemical compositions for all six of their cells, down to 1/100th of a percent (https://imgur.com/a/u5c86Nt). Even if all of them were actually made by the same factory, using the same chemistry, in my opinion they would not have the same percentages of chemicals, metals, plastics, etc., across four different sizes, six different capacity ratings, and multiple current ratings. Different capacity cells use different ratios of the chemicals. Cells with different current ratings use different thicknesses of metal foil to spread the cell goop on and different thickness and quantities of the metal tabs to conduct the current to and from the top and bottom contacts inside the cells. Lithicore claims in their MSDS’ that all six of their cells use the same battery “chemistry” as LiPo’s. That does not mean they are dangerous! If it was true though it would mean that if they are misused or mishandled that they can go into thermal runaway, and possibly burst, at a lower temperature and that their reactions during runaway are more violent than the other Li-Ion battery chemistries we can use. The MSDS’ claim LiPo chemistry but an email from Ario said that Lithicore sources NCA chemistry as part of what they do for getting the same parts as used in Samsung and LG cells. NCA chemistry is nickel-cobalt-aluminum and it is not the chemistry they list in their MSDS (which is lithium-cobalt-oxide, LCO). This concerns me. When I asked Ario about the LiPo chemistry listed in Lithicore’s MSDS documents and told him my concerns I was told “the engeneer (sic) team may not expose much information as it's their internal decision”. I was also surprised to see Lithicore list the same chemistry as used by LiPo’s in their MSDS’ because that chemistry just isn’t used anymore in the round cells we vape with. I have been told, by those with much more experience in the battery industry than me, that the price of cobalt is just too high to justify its use for low cost round cells like the ones we use. Well, they’re low cost when manufactured. The markups in price before they get to us are huge. An incorrect MSDS would mean that any vendor importing Lithicore cells into their country, like in the EU, would be submitting an incorrect document to the authorities. This means the wrong substances are being registered and could affect whether that vendor can sell the Lithicore cells they bought if the MSDS error is found. I suspect the vendors would be pretty unhappy to hear about that. A big reason why MSDS’ exist in the first place is to inform employees and first-responders of the risks involved if they need to handle a spill or fire involving a product. An incorrect MSDS makes responding properly harder to do. This is unacceptable. If you believe the MSDS safety documents are accurate then Lithicore is using the same chemistry as LiPo’s. If Lithicore is using the NCA chemistry Ario mentioned then the MSDS’ were filed with the wrong information. If any of Lithicore’s cells are rewrapped then NCA or other non-LiPo chemistries are being used and the MSDS’ are wrong. No matter which it actually is, this earns all six Lithicore cells a Do Not Buy recommendation from me. Filing incorrect safety documents would be unacceptable and with all of the other cells we can buy, why would we buy ones that use the same chemistry as LiPo‘s? Lithicore’s web site lists “Max pulse” ratings of 20A-50A for their cells and they told me that the ratings are “estimated by current terminal voltage (-) minimum voltage (÷) lumped resistance". This confused me because that’s just an Ohm’s Law equation for how much current would flow at a particular voltage and resistance. It doesn’t address pulse length, pulse frequency, cell cycle life, safety, or anything else that would be part of setting a rating. How long are the pulses? How often can the cell be pulsed at its rating? What end-of-cell-life criteria are used to set the rating? Can I pulse a 50A rated Lithicore cell at 50A for any amount of time with any amount of time between pulses? No. While Lithicore’s pulse numbers may indicate a capability of the cell they cannot, in my opinion, be considered ratings.