SO, 18650s huh? Lets take a quick look at some other options

So far I’ve seen soooooo many battery packs of 18650s and although I understand their high discharge capacity but I would LOVE some variety here, so I’ll just tell you guys about a few different types of batteries.

Currently the largest capacity 18650 is the LG NCR which has about 3650mah (If i remember correctly) however most people buy 18650s that have 2500mah to 3000mah, which isn’t too bad right. These also have a rating of 15-35A (min-max). (~$7-$10)

20700 batteries are honestly not much different from a 18650, they were created to replace 18650s however given the equal 30A rating and having an average 3000mah, they are not too impressive. However THERE IS a certain variety of 20700 that has 4000mah, which for the same package of a 18650 is a welcome bonus. (~$6-$10)

DISTANCE 21700 is where things get veryyy interesting because you now have a cell not much larger than a 18650 but with 4800mah!!! which is almost double what most people have in their boards. These cells are around the same price point as well, with a genuine samsung cell running you ($10) however with a discharge rate of 9.6A, which is more of an endurance runner than a sprinter. Other varieties of the 21700 however boast 3100mah-3750mah with a discharge rate from 24A-35A, so you could be also getting a slight upgrade in mah and a slight upgrade in discharge as well. These benefits are not massive however and prices range from (~$10-$18) for these higher discharge 21700. I would recommend 21700 for those commuters that need that distance. (also these bad boys are in tesla model 3s so yk)

THESE ARE JUST AWESOME 26650 ARE JUST AWESOME, THEY SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES with 4500mah and 60A of discharge FOR ($8). These cells are comparable in size to a d-cell, and are a bit longer, but for their added size increase the performance of a 18650 by a significant margin. SERIOUSLY look into these batteries because they are whats next for both long distance boasting that 4500mah and the sprints with that massive discharge rate of 60A.

BEST FOR LAST This cell is simply a behemoth that I am still trying to get my hands on, the 38120 is a cell that holds 10000mah and can discharge at 30A. That makes this thing a massive 18650.For $25 a cell. What more can I say? The 38120 holds 4 times more mah than the 18650 and costs about 4 times more too, and considering its nice packaging it just saves the space of 4 18650s in parallel. THIS IS WHAT WE NEED ON OUR ELECTRIC SKATEBOARDS.

Links to the places I get my batteries:

1 Like

“better” also needs to take price into account. A Samsung INR18650-30Q is €2.75 right now

You can optimize for lots of things – cost, weight, space efficiency, discharge rate, or a combination of them

Also bigger circles don’t pack as tightly into a space as smaller circles. There is more wasted space not containing a cell but containing air instead.

You mind telling me where you found this price? Because I’ve found these to be the most efficient because they pack more punch in whats almost the same amount of space. I based this off of the LG MJ1 3500mah which is being sold for 8 Bucks

But to be clear, each electric skateboard is unique, so while some may need high capacity from something like a 38120 for their MASSIVE commute, a little cute electric penny board could use rechargeable AA batteries so they don’t take up any space

nkon has them for that price if you’re buying from not-EU.

Also the LG INR18650MJ1 is the best option for making a pack as light as possible per mile of range. It might cost more and have less total range, but it will be less grams of battery per mile of range.

Each cell has its unique things it’s best at.

Yes, yes, and yes. But for a MASSIVE battery of 2kWh or more at 10S or 12S with a 5kW-ish discharge, the Samsung INR18650-35E beats any 38120 or 20700 or 21700 I’ve seen thus far.

Interesting, I didn’t really look into that

Isn’t that a pretty standard 18650 with 3500mah but only 8A discharge?

1 Like

Only 8A discharge, but they’ve got a high volumetric energy density, and they’re dirt cheap.

Like @b264 said, there are a lot of “optimal” solutions, depending on what your definition of optimal is.

$/kwh, KWh/kg, KWh/L, etc.

b264 has been going full out Excel nerd on this stuff for a while now. 18650s are so popular not because they’re the absolute perfect battery, but because battery companies make literally billions of them, and they’re one of the most cost-effective packages because of it.

RC LiPo pouch cells have them beat in terms of $/KW, KWh/l, KW/l, KWh/Kg and KW/KG, but 18650s are still more popular because they win in terms of safety, commodity, and $/KWh.

It’s why Tesla uses ~8000 of them in each Model S/X, they’re a commodity item.

Now that Tesla has their own battery factory, they’ve decided to roll their own size for the model 3, but they’re not selling the cells as a commodity, and thus the price per cell on the open market is much higher, even taking into account the size difference.


I don’t think you’ve done the math here. A 26650 is almost 2x the volume of an 18650. Its funny how squares work. Bet you didn’t know that a 6.5" diameter circle has over 2x the area of a 5" circle. Likewise two 30Q will provide 6000ma of capacity and real world continuous discharge of 40A at nearly the same volume of your 26650. Oh and that 60a discharge of your 26650 is not continuous, but burst. In fact, continuous discharge is only 20a. And at $3.50 a battery, the 30Q is cheaper than your 26650. The 26650 loses in every metric.

Even the 21700 is 50% more volume than an 18650. Again, math and squares. And so far, simply adding 50% more 30Q cells easily beat any 21700 out there in terms of capacity, discharge and especially price.


As everyone said here 18650s are the sweet spot for esk8. I might argue that the 30Q is the best all around cell out of all of them. The only reason to go for say A123 26650s is when you’re tight on space but you still need high discharge (hill climber penny anyone?) but that’s a very niche build the other reason is if you want to take your board on the plane. Last there is no practical way to install those massive 38120 headway cells on an eboard (they’re meant for ebike) and still get enough in series to get enough voltage unless you plan to store your pack in a backpack and run a wire to the board

18650 are the best batteries available because everyone is using them and thus millions of $ more have been spent on researching and developing them in every possibly way

you have a shit ton of options from every quality supplier for reasonable prices compared to the bigger batteries, and since they are “smaller” you can pack them in a 1000 ways and still have space under your deck

I believe 18650 is the most dense battery available now. because of that it is most common, also cheeper, and popular. but after tesla model 3, their new 20something size will be the hit, because it will be mass produced to millions in few yrs, and with 50% volume increase give 2 times energy density. it will be most energy dense battery.

Yep thats the 2170s, cant wait for those to hit us :slight_smile:

Dunno if this was posted somewhere else but they don’t look bad and the test also does look good.

Density of the cell isn’t so good. I think sanyo 20700B does nearly same performance with better capacity at 4250mah. we also have to look at price per performance as well. 30q being most popular, it is cheapest and high performance. actually they under rated at 15amp. in my research they perform safely to 20amp.

just look at the lygte test and look at what price you can get the liitokala, the sanyo are very expensive they drop out by default, imo

So I did some calculation, based on 12s4p with the lowest possible price I found.

1.LiitoKala Lii 40 (20amp, 4ah) Volume=1518.7477cm3 , 864wh =1.7581cm3/wh weight:61.2g*48=2.9kg Price: $166

  1. Samsung 30q (15amp, 3ah) Volume=1126.32cm3, 648wh =1.7381cm3/wh weight: 45.6*48=2.2kg Price: $156

3.Sanyo 20700B (15amp, 4.25ah) Volume=1397.4150cm3, 918wh =1.5222cm3/wh (Crazy) weight=63g*48=3kg Price: $231.84

Lito is not bad cell, but I don’t like my board being too heavy. Also 12s5p 30q will give u similar range at 810wh, still lighter at 2.5kg with the better amp pull. price isn’t too far off either


If there are not any built packs using this cell its hard to say it’s a viable option next to the 30q packs anyone can buy and plug in…is this cell great for a long range? hell yes, but can I buy a eskate pack using this cell? prolly not…so this option includes the price of learning to build packs and all the equipment to do so as well…


This is weird, 12s4p for Liito is 177.58$ for me. Ok i havn’t looked at the weight. I will probably use them for my next build…around next year, but maybe there are better ones until then.

1 Like

Okay better price, I just used what you listed there, about $4 a cell. I like carrying light weight with good range. which lots of people aims for. for mtb I would straight go for sanyo build. From what I heard their expected cycle is somewhere 3000 mark. They are aimed for EV (panasonic re-wrap, just guestimate since they are same company, and panasonic has the gigafactory who produce tesla 2170 cell), which means you can abuse with amp as long as keeping it cool and have same expected life as normal 18650. Also by next year price will drop as it just started mass production.

1 Like

if you buy more you get a discount on the price, you need to chose 6PCS. If weight is a major factor i guess 10s is enough and maybe only 3p max or go for lipo, which i am still fond of.

I’ve edited the price. 3.458*48=166 And I think it is good for price/range. Also enclosure is something to think about unless u ganna diy that too. most of enclosure is focus on 18650 show us the build when you do and let us know!