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With the onset of Spring, it's probably high time your Turtle came out of the cupboard in which it has been hibernating. Since it will almost certainly need a bit of TLC, here are some hints about caring for your Turtle before it gets back to work.

The symptom that you are most likely to encounter from your Turtle is extreme lethargy; in fact it will probably be completely incapable of any movement. The most important thing is to revitalise its batteries by giving them a conditioning charge.

If your Turtle has got battery contacts (models with serial numbers below 01/5937), it may well also need to have them cleaned, using a light polish.

As the final stage in your Turtle's rejuvenation process, you should lubricate the stabiliser ball under its head. Give it one or two drops of a light oil (3-in-1 or sewing machine oil) - but don't overdo it. After this care routine, your Turtle should be ready once again for action.

Conditioning Turtle's Batteries

1. Make sure the batteries are fully discharged. To do this run the Turtle until it cannot move and then leave it switched on for several hours.
2. Plug the power adapter into mains power.
3. Connect the adapter's jack plug to the socket above the Turtle's left driver wheel.
4. Move the control switch on the Turtle's left rear flipper to CHARGE. (Do not expect the yellow light on the Turtle control panel to come on).
5. Leave Turtle to charge for 24 hours. Your Turtle needs a conditioning charge when:
- When you first get it.
- When you install new batteries.
- When the batteries appear to be losing capacity.
- If you haven't used it for a long time.

It is good practice to give the batteries a conditioning charge every 3 to 4 weeks. For more information on charging, including FAST charge, see page 8 of your Turtle User Guide.

Upgrading Turtles

Early Turtles (serial numbers up to 01/5937) can be upgraded by replacing the single battery cells with a welded battery pack. This will improve the reliability of your Turtle's battery system.
A good time to make the change would be when you need to renew the rechargeable cells.

Communicator Upgrades

Communicators (Serial numbers up to VDL1/08/6751) can be upgraded with a new microprocessor. This will make setting up the Turtle system easier and more reliable.

  © 2004. Amethyst Consultancy Ltd.