Exploding batteries, frayed wires, disgruntled motivater

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nich0lai
nich0lai's picture
Exploding batteries, frayed wires, disgruntled motivater

I got a brand-new RSV2, straight out of the box he ran for about three minutes and suddenly fell over and started shooting battery acid and smoke out of his foot. I call wowwee, they make me take pictures of the internals of everything and after three days decide to offer me no support because it was a gift given to me from someone who bought it on eBay. So now looking at this dead robot in my corner, I'm getting a little curious about why this happened and what to do, brand-new electronics shouldn't blow up batteries.

When I open her up I found a single bare wire in the same foot that malfunctioned(battery acid etc) touching the motor.

one whole cabling system is literally crumbling, all of the insulation. Other than that everything is fine, all boards still functioning (except programming memory), til one of the wires touches and the batteries blow up. What a humongous piece of crap.

somefrayed wires

 

I taped everything up for fun, he works, except now it appears he has a memory problem, he has none. Programming just will not work, though he appears to go through the motions. Any chance of me being able to repair? Wowwee sure isn't going to help me.

 

 Edit!!: wowwee helped me! a resolution was achieved on the next page

 

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

nich0lai, I have answered this problem for you on the other forum, however If you are any good with a soldering iron you should be able to replace the wires. The reason your batteries are getting hot is that you probably have a short in those wires, If you are using alkaline you are probably shorting a couple of amps,If nicads depending on the mha rating could be more amps. If like me you are using 12,000 mha that's 12 amps  you would have a pile of melted plastic on the floor, However I use inline fuses to stop that scenario.

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

Hi, my problem is not just the fraying wires (which if you read my post I already "repaired"), but my memory is non functional. Any chance of soldering in a new memory chip? The wires are so frayed, they only thing that will work is replacing EVERY wire in the robot.

 

i'm about to give upon this one. I'm not an electrician.

 

BTW I think you are confusing me for another user, you have never answered a post of mine as far as I can tell. Must be someone else with the same problem.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

Nich0lai: Is this not you?? http://pruim037.proboards107.com/inde...

I am a moderator on this site. 

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

ya, but for some reason your post just appeared now. Cache maybe? Thank you for your response. I solved the wire problem for now, but the memory problem is an odd one. Any ideas? Anyone know which is the programming memory chip?

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

You may want to visit Nocturnals web site as he has mapped most of WoWee's robots and you may find what you want there.  http://www.evosapien.com/robosapien-h...

If you have had a short in your system you may well have damaged the memory or some other chip in RSV2M 

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

yeah, unfortunately the mem was the only casualty. everything else works perfectly, I thought I was going to have a functional robot after all, fingers still crossed. Thanks for the link!

 

Thanks!

 

(really wish wowwee had offered me SOME support, it's brand new!)

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

Well, the memory is not labeled, no
r obvious on these board printouts, guess I am just out of a bunch of cash.

Nocturnal
Nocturnal's picture

Actually, the memory is labeled. You may find some of the contents of this page useful.

The memory is the eigth pin IC hiding next to the capacitor in this photo.

If I were you, I would argue manufacturing defect, and go back to pestering WowWee, but since I'm me, I'd attempt to fix it myself.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

There seems to be a few problems similar to yours nich0lai, and seeing that this also seems to be a manufactuing problem I would also pester WoWee for a replacement.

One question nich0lai, WHEN you first got him and switched him on did you notice any burning or smoke from RSV2?? if so the heat generated from a short would also cause those wires to give a crumbled affect after it had cooled down. 

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

Hi everyone, thanks for your interest.

He did not smoke or heat in anyway, When I turned on the robot he worked for a minute and then when he actually moved and the wires touched it was instant dead robot. Wowwee admitted they had heard of this before but they will offer me absolutely no support because it was bought on eBay (brand new in box). They will not even answer e-mails from me anymore, I am flat out being ignored, which is really annoying because they told me they were giving me a replacement, several times, made me take apart the thing and photograph it for them, and then suddenly stop talking to me as soon as I faxed them the receipt. Great customer service. Their side of things is they support no robots not purchased through an authorized seller, which of course isn't publicized anywhere that I can find except inside the Robosapien box. I am really upset with Wowwee right now. They won't even sell me the parts to repair it apparently as I asked them to in my last e-mail.

But anyways onto something productive, thank you so much for that link. So if I find one of these atmel's, I could theoretically solder it in and have a working robot?

Thanks again everyone

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

nich0lai: Your welcome. WoWee needs to wake up regarding these faults, or they will be loosing sales if they do not follow up these complants. Mark Tilden where are you? We need you to talk to the manufacture's.

Currahee
Currahee's picture

LETS BOYCOTT WOWWEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

Interestingly enough I got the seller from eBay to send me another robot and it has the exact same problem, and has never been turned on. As soon as I opened the box, I did not put batteries in him and instead opened up his chest plate and back and found the exact same faulty crumbling wires.  I'm happy to post pictures if it matters, but the bottom line is I have two defective robots here straight from the factory with the exact same problem, and one of them has never been turned on.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

Mark Tilden needs to be informed of this problem, Especially if you do not get any respones from Wowee.

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

I will try to talk to the manufacturer again tomorrow but they have made it pretty clear to me what their position is. I would love Mark to know about this because he is the reason I became interested in the robot in the first place. I am pasting wowwee's last email to me, they haven't responded to the last three or four. I know the robot isn't fake because it has a CompUSA price tag, and the manufacturer verified the serial number. when the person on the phone did that the only thing he said was okay we will send you a replacement. Nothing funny came up, basically they just told me to get lost because it was purchased on eBay. if you're curious what I said about the company, I said Sony or Microsoft or Apple or any other company backs up anything new in box that is sold on eBay, and I feel that the service I was getting from wowwee was the epitome of bad customer service.

 

Hello Josh,

We are truly sorry that you feel this way about our company! However, we do not offer exchanges on our products that are sold through an unauthorized dealer. We do not know where he got our products from, or the condition that they were in. They could have been a defective batch that we requested back from authorized dealers that never made it back to us. Or even a fake RSv2 that have been known to be sold as our if it were our own. If you had contacted the seller on Ebay within his 14 day policy (like it states on his Ebay store), just as we recommended you do, they would’ve gladly replace the Robot for you.

We would have offered you some support in repairing and troubleshooting your product, except in this case there is no repair that would resolve your problem. The problem with the foot has cause damaged not only to the foot but the entire circuit board as well.

My hands are tied on this matter as I can not bend WowWee’s policy on this matter! I have informed my superiors about your situation and they stood by the company policy on this matter.

Sincerely,
Jason
WowWee Customer Support
http://www.wowwee.com
http://www.wowweestore.com
http://www.wowweesupport.com
customersupport@wowwee.com

 

 

 

and this is the e-mail I sent them today, I doubt I get a response, but it would be nice.

 

 

 Hello Jason and Marel,

I hope this letter finds you well, I just want to keep you abreast of what is going on, not that it seems that anyone is interested. I received another defective robot with the same problem from the eBay seller. Pictures and other commentary are located here:

http://www.robocommunity.com/forum/thread/11802/Exploding-batteries--frayed-wires--disgruntled-motivater/

It is very unfair to make the seller keep sending us robots as obviously it is a manufacturing defect. If it is indeed a recalled robot, you guys should have done a better job getting them off the market. I can't think of any excuse for what is going on here. I've been very reasonable, I jumped through every hoop you asked for, I opened it up I sent pictures I sent receipts, I really feel that a proper response besides too bad you bought it on eBay is in order.

Again this is a heads up, most likely you'll hear from both me and Shaun (who is a female) by phone today.

Hope you have a good day,

 

 

 

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

M'mmm, I think you have gone through the the right channels nich0lai, And I couldn't have explained any better to them. Lets hope they [WoWee]  take notice and send you one direct from their factory.

Good luck. 

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture
Hello Josh,
 
The problem again persist from the fact that the seller is not an authorized dealer. If he was an authorized dealer he would have signed a contract with our company, and in this contract would be a return policy for any defective items that we send to him. As well, if he was an authorized dealer we would have gladly replaced the unit for you.
 
Since it was not from an authorized dealer, the warranty becomes void with us. We could have sold you replacement parts if they were available for the problem that you had encountered. However, the parts that you require and not sold as a separate item from our warehouse. Nor is it available from our production plant in Hong Kong.
 
 
 
 
 
 
and my response
 
 
 

hello,

So what do you recommend I do, give up? You are not addressing my questions or complaints. I think considering I have two factory defective robots here, I deserve better than sorry go away, I deserve an explanation. You have the serial numbers, etc. This is the best you can do? I obviously cannot get a replacement that works from the seller, all are defective. That means you guys screwed up, not the seller. Maybe you should be pursuing legal action against the people selling recalled robots?

josh

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture


If you can't read the address bar this is wowwee's warrantee page, I think the blank page says it all.

 

 I can't find any public posting of their warranty policy, can anyone else? I really can't believe they're blowing me off so bad.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

M'mmmm, Not very good is it, Like you say, It says it all.

 

 

 

Sepulchral
Sepulchral's picture

 

It must be your browser that you are using! I don't have any problems viewing it at all. I am using Vista, IE 7.0.6 

Sepulchral
Sepulchral's picture

bah couldn't get the dimensions of the picture right!

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

^^ apparently the website doesn't work with Firefox. Good call thank you.

So thank God I'm a member of this website, Wowwee decided to address this problem with me in a manner that definitely went above and beyond what they had to do to make the situation right. I would go into specifics but I'm pretty sure they are breaking policy for me and I doubt that they want everyone to think they can break the rules so I'm not going to say exactly what they're doing, but I'm happy.  Very happy.  I wish I didn't have to go through everything I did, but I hope they know what's going on with these robots that are defective and I would recommend to everyone to not buy one of their products outside of an authorized seller if you have any plans on keeping a warranty.

Thanks everyone for your help, I look forward to remaining a member of this community as I hopefully enjoy my future working robot.

milw
milw's picture

I'm glad WowWee took care of you; that is a really frustrating story. I hope they've done a decent job of the recall, otherwise it's a matter of time until one starts a fire.

Oh, and welcome to the community!

-cheers- Scott 

Nocturnal
Nocturnal's picture

The waranty loads fine for me, and I'm using firefox.

Incidentally, just a point, the warranty says nothing about authorized sellers. Just the original consumer purchaser. Oh and its only valid for those of you in the USA.

*Laughs* Jason never said there was a recall, he just listed two hypothetical reasons as to why WowWee won't honor warranty claims from people who purchased from "Unauthorized dealers". What I assume he was trying to get at, is that WowWee has no idea how the unauthorized dealers got their stock, and so wont honor warranty. Whichs is like being guilty until found innocent (but pretty standard where warranties are concerned).

I think WowWee needs to do some serious QC on the wiring they use.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

Great out come for you nich0lai, I am also pleased that WoWee decided to do whatever they did for you, particulally when you bought two and had the same fault. Hopefully they will look into the cause and sort it out.

Sepulchral
Sepulchral's picture

what was the production code on the v2 anyway? I would be curious to see if the two production codes were the same or similar! Maybe if anyone would buy one of similar code that they could stay away from that code.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

Sepulchral: Unless the codes are on the outside of the box it would be impossible to check, but a good idea all the same.

Sepulchral
Sepulchral's picture

most companies indent the production code into the box so that if u know where to look for them u can see them. Basically it is in the event that they have to do a recall of any kind they dont have to open up all of their inventory to make sure they dont send it out to customers after it had been recalled!

nich0lai
nich0lai's picture

both were most likely the same batch. few obvious clues, I will look later.

RobosapienV2-4mem8
RobosapienV2-4mem8's picture

I suspect you are right Sepulchral, It would be stupid not to.

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