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LiPo Charger Shield Tutorial

Product Description:

The LiPo Charger Shield allows you to power your Oak with a single-cell 3.7V Lithium-ion Polymer battery and charge it via the Oak's USB port. The kit includes 200mAh LiPo battery.

This is an partially kit and requires basic soldering. This is designed for use with the Oak development board, which is not included.


Part Quantity
LiPo Charger Shield PCB1
200mAh Single Cell LiPo Battery1
2-pin JST PH RA Male Connector 1
1×3 pin male 0.1“ pitch header 1
1×6 pin male 0.1” pitch header 1

Soldering: If you are new to soldering we recommend the following tutorials: Soldering Basics ( and Soldering Crash Course from the folks at Sparkfun ( How to solder from the Curious Inventor:

Adafruit has this excellent guide that starts with the tools needed and then shows detailed pictures, including some of the common problems that beginners experience (

We assume for these assembly instructions that you know the basics of thru-hole soldering. If you don't check out the links above, these boards are very easy to solder - we promise!


Empty kit bag and verify contents.

The LiPo Shield PCB thru-holes we will be using for the Oak are the 2-pin JST battery connector and the 3-pin male header for VCC/GND/VIN. The included 6-pin header is for stability only, therefore stackable headers in the corresponding thru-holes are recommended. The 6-pin headers may safely be omitted. The set of 2 thru-holes are for an optional switch or jumper (see below).

The thru-holes for the 2-pin JST battery connector are slightly smaller than the others. Notice how there are three holes for the 2-pin connector. This allows you to mount the connector either on the bottom or the top of the PCB. Pay careful attention to the labels on the PCB to determine which thru-holes to use for the 2-pin connector. The JST battery connector may be mounted on the bottom if you wish to solder the Oak's 3-pin power header on upside-down, thereby allowing the user to plug in the LiPo shield underneath the Oak in order not to block the other pins.

IMPORTANT NOTE: It is highly recommended that the 2-pin connecter be mounted on the top of the PCB if you have already solder the Oak's 3-pin power header to its top. The Oak's included female headers would obstruct the battery connector if mounted on the bottom.

Solder the 2-pin JST connecter and 3-pin male header onto the PCB as pictured.

Connect the LiPo shield to the Oak's 3-pin VCC/GND/VIN female header. Then plug in the battery to the LiPo Shield 2-pin connecter and connect the Oak's USB power to charge. The include LiPo battery ships with some charge, but will still need to charge for about an hour. The red LED on the LiPo shield will turn off when the battery is fully charged.

Your LiPo Charger Shield is complete!

0.5A Charging:

The bottom of the LiPo Charger Shield PCB has jumper pads to enable 0.5A charging. By default, the shield charges at 0.1A. 0.5A will charge batteries faster, however with batteries less than 500mAh such as the one included in the kit, 0.5A charging will shorten the life of the battery. Therefore it is recommended to leave the shield at the default charging current of 0.1A for use with the included 200mAh battery.

Adding a Switch

Optionally, a switch or jumper (not included) may be soldered to the LiPo shield PCB via the thru-holes to the left of the 3-pin power header. When the switch is closed, power will be off.


CAUTION: Using a damaged battery, reversing battery polarity, shorting any part of the power system while powered by battery, or in any other way using a LiPo battery improperly can cause serious injury, death, and/or fire.

Use only single cell LiPo batteries with this shield.

oak/tutorials/lipo.txt · Last modified: 2016/06/24 19:27 by digistump