Survivalist Forum banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
43 Posts
The 5W panels from Harbor Freight look like a good way to keep car/truck batteries topped off, but 5W per battery alone is not enough to charge them with much use.

Or are you looking for something to charge small cells?

All of my charging is built around 12v, I can use the batteries in my truck or smaller cells that can be carried without too much hassle while backpacking. Those can then be used to charge AA or AAA cells.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Im sorry to piggy back on this post, but I am quite clueless about solar energy. I want something that can charge AA/AAA batteries or an Ipod, maybe even a laptop. What Items would I need to accomplish this?
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,146 Posts
Im sorry to piggy back on this post, but I am quite clueless about solar energy. I want something that can charge AA/AAA batteries or an Ipod, maybe even a laptop. What Items would I need to accomplish this?
Depends on if this is a home setup or remote. If its a home setup i would buy one large panel,charging controller, 12 volt battery, and a inverter. The i would plug my normal house chargers into the inverter. As im using my phone i cant go into types of all of these batteries,inverters. If this is for remote you can buy premade system on ebay,amazon some are good some suck. Mostly the problem will be the small size limiting the charge rate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,561 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Or are you looking for something to charge small cells?


Yes, I'm looking for a system to recharge batteries/ cell phones. I just don't want to buy junk and then be in the market in a year or worse there is no market in a year
 

·
Hi HO Silver
Joined
·
585 Posts
I have a solar charger that has LiPo batteries in it so I can get almost 2 cell phone charges out of it before needing to recharge the solar charger.. It is small so it requires almost 2 days to recharge itself but is a great small device to carry..

If you are talking 12 volt I also have a roll up 5watt charger for some travel occasions..

If you are talking home 12 volt charging, buy what you can afford. I am still not comfortable with what we have and would like more panels and a back up controller...
 

·
Hi HO Silver
Joined
·
585 Posts
mah is the amount of Electric it holds.. 1 qt 2 qt 1 gal. See if they list how many recharges you may get... Cheap batts. are about 500, good ones are up at 2000 recharges.. I don't worry to much about mah in A, C or D's...



What is a good NiMH mah to buy? I have seen 2600, 2000 ect. How does mah affect performance?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
175 Posts
What is a good NiMH mah to buy? I have seen 2600, 2000 ect. How does mah affect performance?
The NIMH batteries to get now are those that are rated "low self discharge" or LSD. The problem that has always existed with the rechargables is that they aren't well suited for storage as they lose their charge over a few months. The LSD versions are designed to still retain about 90% charge after 12 months. The drawback is that because they are of new design the capacity isn't as high as the regular NIMHs but that is quickly changing. IIRC some of the regular AA NIMHs were as high as 2800 mah and the LSD as high as 2400 mah.

The important thing is to make sure you get NIHMs that are reputable. I have had good luck with Sanyo Eneloop, Rayovac Pre-Charged, and Ultralast Green Every Day Use. Powerex Imedion is also supposed to be good. The 4 Belkin Power 2300 mah AAs that I was testing were supposed to be LSD but were completely dead after only 4 months in storage.

Another thing that you have to be aware of is that depending on the brand, the AA NIMHs can tend to be a bit bigger than standard alkalines and may be a very tight fit depending on the size of the battery receptacles in the device. With an Eotech I had no problem with Eneloops, but I could only get one of the Ultralasts half way in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
What is a reasonable price to pay for good LSD NiMH rechargeable batteries? Also, what do you think of Duracell rechargeable batteries? I am totally unfamiliar with rechargeable brands and the batteries you mentioned which tends to make me uncomfortable with a purchase. I usually stick to safe purchases with brands I trust. I have always used regular Duracell batteries in every day use but never rechargeable. Seeing though as I have no experience with rechargeable batteries I need to do some research before I decide which brand to go with. Thank you for your help so far!

http://www.onlybatteries.com/showitem.asp?ItemID=17071.13&cat1=14&uid=2074
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,101 Posts
I have read that the enlop batteries are supposed to be about the best at the moment, but do not have any practical experience with them.
 

·
2REP 4e Compagnie
Joined
·
505 Posts
For a solar charger that's portable I recommend Brunton. I've been using 2 of their 5w solar chargers in Af-Paki for two years now and they work great for keeping the laptop, satcom equipment and other such materials charged up in the field. There are accessory kits which include adapters for your iPad, iPod, iPhone, etc. as well as a battery. I like the battery block as it can be used to charge your portable electronics while the solar panels recharge the battery block. Either way, the system is relatively light in weight and is durable.
 

·
Forum Administrator
Joined
·
16,846 Posts
Local wal-mart solar powered lights are usually powered by AA or 123 rechargeable batteries. Put the lights out in the sun, let the batteries charge, and take them out before dark. They also double as security lights.

If you go the solar powered light route, make sure you get some high run time lights - for better charging.

 

·
Seeker of Truth
Joined
·
216 Posts
Chargers

I'm trying to get some solar and some crank rechargers and lights. I have found a variety of sources by just using Google. The best prices I have found so far are eBay and Amazon.com. It takes some research, but what I've gotten so far seems to work great. There are some $1 ones on ebay that crank charge cell phones. I'm going to order one and try it before I stock up.;) LoL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,755 Posts
radio shack

Im sorry to piggy back on this post, but I am quite clueless about solar energy. I want something that can charge AA/AAA batteries or an Ipod, maybe even a laptop. What Items would I need to accomplish this?
It's a good start any way to learning about solar .
been using solar a while now .
built it up from little ones to the more sophisticaed ones I now have on my roof and shop.
Books on solar are all ovver the place , best way is to keep it simple . Charge your own batteries and use an inverter . eventually thumb you nose at the power company. :):)
Your laptop is going to need something more significant than the little AA battery chargers.
Harbor Freight solar panels are not what you would call commercial grade, but they are functional . If you have a place to mount them , the 45watt kitis on sale now for $199 I think. and 2- 12volt (deep cycle or better )batteries and an inverter would be a great start.
/As with the solar panels H. F. inverters are over rated a bit , they work and the warrenty is good ,bank on it . But just ignore the high numbers they boast . that's all.
And by the way , don't skinp on the wire size ,hooking things up .
Because of the special voltages and conectors laptops use, sometimes it is simpler to use it's own charger and the inverter to the the charging with .
If the clouds are blocking the sun for long periods ,I hook up the battery charger from grid power to bring my battery system up . My lites are most all DC .
 

·
2REP 4e Compagnie
Joined
·
505 Posts
On my previous post I mentioned REI's Everest expedition. Here's a link to their blog where it includes a video showing what one of their photographers is packing. It includes various electronics and portable folding solar chargers to charge the electronics (including the batteries for the cameras).

http://findout.rei.com/blog_detail/?contentid=6877846101116660006

Oh, and to correct a mistake I made in my earlier post, REI is using Goal0 (Goal Zero) for their solar panel charger, not Brunton. Goal0 is a good brand as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
733 Posts
Local wal-mart solar powered lights are usually powered by AA or 123 rechargeable batteries. Put the lights out in the sun, let the batteries charge, and take them out before dark. They also double as security lights.

If you go the solar powered light route, make sure you get some high run time lights - for better charging.

YouTube - Solar powered lights instead of candles
have you done a 72 hour test of your system to see how functional it is?
the litmus test "when you throw the breakers for a 3 day weekend and see who can keep their sanity! :thumb:
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top