Battery Connectors

There are a lot of different battery connectors available for RC vehicles. They vary in quality and the most important thing you’re looking for is the current flow of the battery connectors. You want to make sure they can handle the application your using the connectors for. Here are the ones you are most likely to see:

High Current Battery Connectors

Deans ConnectorsDeans: Until recently, these were (and still are, to some extent) the “go-to” connector for serious RC enthusiasts. They have a high current rating, they’re very small, and they are not too difficult (or too easy) to connect and disconnect. The problems with Deans are that they are moderately expensive and can be difficult to solder. Many companies sell “knockoff” deans connectors, which do not work nearly as well. Since few companies are honest about whether they are selling authentic deans or not, it can be hard to be sure you’re getting the real deal, so if you want the real thing use trusted suppliers like Tower Hobbies.

xt 60 connectorsXT60: By Hobby King: these connectors address the main problems with deans and EC3. The pins/plugs are permanently molded into high-temp plastic, so they should never come apart. They are easy to solder for anything up to 10AWG wire (and don’t even need heat-shrink), and they’re cheap. The only complaint is that because they’re so new, few shops (besides HK) carry them yet.

traxxas connectorsTraxxas: As you might expect, these are the connectors used in Traxxas vehicles. Since they come standard it makes it a pain to change them and they can handle the high current just like deans or other high current connectors so if you’re not needing your batteries to be compatible with other vehicles you’re just as well leaving them on. Many companies producing cheap batteries are starting to offer lipos and NiMH with these connectors.

bullet connectorsBullets: Sometimes called “banana plugs”, these connectors come in various sizes and can be connected or separate. These are most often used to connect the ESC to the motor, but some people use them for batteries as well. The bullet connectors pictured here would most likely be used to connect your batteries to the charger, the other side being a compatible high current connector. If you don’t have those adapters for a charger you can always just use raw wire.

Standard Connectors

Tamiya: Sometimes called “standard” connectors, because for 20 years, they were the standard. Many cars still come with these connectors, even though they cannot handle much current, are some what difficult to disconnect. These standard battery connectors also have a tendency to melt at high temperatures. They are typically the connectors your using when you realize you need high current connectors.  Tamiya connectors can be crimped instead of soldered, but crimped wires have a tendency to get pulled out – especially because you really need to yank on them sometimes to get the connectors apart. These are fine for beginner setups with brushed motors and NiMH batteries, but once you go much beyond stock performance, you’ll need to upgrade to something better, you’ll know when the wires start melting.