Trek Mountain Bikes - Riding a Tour

If you are in the market for a new bike - or even for your first bike, you definitely need to check out Trek Mountain Bikes. Trek Mountain Bikes have been around since the beginning of mountain bike time, and they aren't going anywhere soon - except maybe to the next challenging trail!

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Odyssey Batteries

Staying Power - The Mystery Uncovered.With the start of the summer boating season about to kickoff, now is a good time to check your marine batteries. When planning a day on the water with friends and family the last thing you need is a dead battery. Let's start by taking a little of the mystery out of your marine batteries. I will explain the different types of batteries available today and describe why some batteries will outperform others with respect to cranking power, reserve capacity, and service life.

There are three basic types of 12 volt batteries used today for marine applications. They are the flooded battery, the gel battery, and most recently the AGM battery, (which stands for absorbed glass mat). All of these batteries are constructed of lead and acid and measure a full charge at 12.85 volts, they can be divided into starting and deep-cycle, but the similarities end there.

While we're on the subject of "marine" batteries, keep in mind that the term marine is used as a marketing tool and has no technical merit.Batteries stop working primarily because of internal failure. Corrosion on the positive grid, connecting straps, and lead plates within the battery cause them to die. Batteries also fail from improper maintenance, shock and vibration, and letting them run down to 100% depth of discharge, where many batteries cannot recover.

Almost all batteries are constructed with recycled lead and hardeners such as antimony or calcium in the manufacturing process. Using recycled lead, which contain impurities, and calcium or antimony is very cost effective for manufacturers, but this significantly contributes to internal corrosion and rapid battery failure. A battery built with pure lead and no impurities will significantly outlast one that uses recycled lead or adds calcium.

So, what shortens the service life? One commonality is that batteries that utilize impurities in the manufacturing process such as recycled lead will not last as long as batteries using pure lead with no impurities. A typical battery sold today lasts about two years. As I mentioned, batteries are designed for starting or deep cycling, few do both. If a starting battery is used for deep cycle applications, it will not be able to recover from those deep discharges, and will fail in a short period of time. Many deep cycle batteries cannot produce the amperage required for starting or do not have internal connecting straps that are capable of handling this high current generated during starting, and will also fail prematurely.

A flooded battery not maintained, filled using tap water, or just left with low water will fail relatively quickly. These "wet" batteries vent and leaks acid causing corrosion on the terminals which will lead to electrical issues on and around the battery with respect to wires and connections. This can cause electrical problems, but more importantly may produce explosive concentrations of hydrogen gas.Gel batteries are maintenance free, but still vent gasses at one to two psi. and cause corrosion on the terminals and surrounding areas.

A Gel battery requires the greatest care when recharghing. If charged at over 14.3 volts, the silica actually separates out of the gel, settles to the bottom of the battery and leads to failure.

Also, if deeply discharged, care must be given to the amount of current (amperage) used in charging the gel type battery to prevent explosion hazards. Furthermore, if mounted in any position other than vertical, a gel battery will expose lead plates and perform at less than a 100% from day one. For these reasons they are becoming a less popular choice for the marine industry.AGM batteries are becoming more and more popular. They excel because most are better equipped to handle shock and vibration, and will typically give you several years of maintenance free service.

Unfortunately, most AGM batteries vent at 1-2 PSI causing them to corrode surrounding electronics similar to the Gel batteries. Almost all AGM's today use recycled lead shortening their service life. They are typically more sensitive to charging than a flooded batteries, however they are less sensitive than a gel.

There are many AGM's on the market but don't just go out and buy an AGM battery and think you have the best. You may have been better off saving that additional money you just spent and bought that 100 year old technology found in a new flooded battery.The Odyssey Battery however is an AGM battery that is very unique and technologically advanced. It was designed to meet the demanding needs of the US Military with respect to heat, cold, shock and vibration, and to last much longer than other batteries. It is currently used in tanks, fighter jets, battle ships, and many other military applications.

On top of this it delivers higher cranking power while also being the best deep cycle battery available (two to three times the cranking amperage of other similar sized batteries and the ability to be drawn down to 100% over 400 times). Other attributes include the ability to sit dormant for up to two years and still hold enough charge to start the motor it was intended for. This is very important because we often don't get to use our boats as much as we would like during the season. The Odyssey battery actually lasts up to 6-10 years which is attributed to it being manufactured with 99.9% pure virgin lead. The US Coast Guard has 500 batteries in 50 Bollinger 87 foot protector class cutters since 1998 without a single failure to date.

On top of all this, it is maintenance free and will not vent during normal operation due to its patented technology to reuse its internal gasses. It is also the only battery to claim an explosion proof design.Charging the Odyssey battery is similar to a flooded battery. It is not sensitive to charging like other AGM's and the Gel batteries.

In fact, the Odyssey battery has no restrictions on the inrush of current and will recharge in one third the time of a conventional battery. This allows the battery to be utilized with traditional flooded chargers and typically does not require replacing your current charger in many applications. Most marine three stage chargers available today work very well for charging the AGM batteries.The time to replace your batteries is when the capacity is degraded to a noticeable point. If your battery seems to not hold a charge as long, or if it does not support your needs fully, it is probably time to replace them. The rule of thumb when replacing batteries is to replace all batteries in the bank at the same time and to use batteries of the same type.

With the demands placed on batteries today by the marine community, I believe the best available product today for marine applications is the Odyssey battery. It lasts three times longer than other batteries, delivers significantly more cranking amperage, has rapid charging features, and can deep cycle better than any other product on the market. Of course, it is maintenance free, does not vent, was designed for extreme shock and vibration, (like in a boat), and can sit for extended periods maintaining a charge. Finally, the spill proof design of the Odyssey battery allows it to be installed on its sides at any angle without sacrificing performance attributes. There is also no fear of any acid spillage as Odyssey recycles the internal gas during operation or charging.

Odyssey batteries are now becoming popular with many boat manufactures as standard original equipment. Companies installing Odyssey products today are Sea Vee, Donzi Yachts by Roscioli, Lake and Bay Boats, and Trinity Yachts to name a few. Two other local South Florida companies that make their living towing and assisting vessels use Odyssey products as well.

Tow Boat U.S. and Cape Ann Towing have begun installing Odyssey batteries in their fleets. With the commercial demands of towing vessels and changing sea conditions, "Odyssey batteries present the best return on investment for us," said Captain John "Barney" Hauf of Tow Boat U.


.For more information about how to purchase Odyssey batteries and the 150 plus dealer network, visit

You can also reach Bob Pope, Vice President of Odyssey Southeast at 954-786-3088.

By: Bob Pope

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