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While I can't prove it, I always thought this change is because of the proliferation of many different types of battery power tools nowadays (drill, jigsaw, circular saw, light, impact drill, saber saw, vacuum cleaner etc.). Back when battery power tools were basically just drills, the neck type batteries fitted them well because the handle would hold some ...


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Of course I also recommend you a cheap, off-the-shelf charge controller, but for completeness: there are alternatives. Charge controllers do not have to be of the PWM or MPPT type (basically the only ones commercially available), there are simpler designs – see Energypedia on Charge Controller Designs. If you wanted, you could certainly build one from your ...


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To expand a bit on the answer from Ed Beal, each 18v battery pack includes a BMS circuit which keeps the voltages of individual cells more or less the same. This helps prevent the identified issue with good cells getting over charged. When connecting multiple packs in parallel, there would be no such BMS to monitor and correct for differences between packs....


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Checking yonder google tells me that it's difficult and unwise for NiCd: http://www.powerstream.com/NiCd.htm, and unlikely to work for Lithium batteries unless you match the internal cells very carefully: http://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/126673/charging-li-ion-batteries-in-parallel. Either one could be overcome, but not for the minimal expense ...


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I know this is an old post, but I found this here. Keystone BK-204 battery clips that slide right on, and then all you have to do is attach a wire. Ryobi Battery Cap



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