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#180220 - 08/24/09 01:30 AM Portable solar charger
aloha Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/16/05
Posts: 1047
Loc: Hawaii, USA
Aloha gang! I didn't want to hijack Nomad's post. But was hoping to pick your collective brains.

Can you recommend a portable solar charger suitable for backpacking and camping? I am hoping for one to use to charge a cell phone, camera and perhaps rechargeable batteries.

I appreciate your feedback. Mahalo.
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#180244 - 08/24/09 02:33 PM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: aloha]
Dagny Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 11/25/08
Posts: 1890
Loc: Washington, DC

I'll be curious to see the input.

I was frustrated a couple years ago trying to find one that would charge lithium camera batteries.

What kind of batteries are in your camera?


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#180262 - 08/24/09 05:27 PM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: Dagny]
aloha Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/16/05
Posts: 1047
Loc: Hawaii, USA
Originally Posted By: Dagny

I'll be curious to see the input.

I was frustrated a couple years ago trying to find one that would charge lithium camera batteries.

What kind of batteries are in your camera?




I have an Olympus Stylus Tough waterproof camera that I take out with me. So the battery would be whatever is in there. It does charge with a USB cable though.
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http://hanzosoutdoors.blogspot.com/

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#180263 - 08/24/09 05:31 PM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: aloha]
aloha Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/16/05
Posts: 1047
Loc: Hawaii, USA
Thanks Izzy for your review. I will take a look at it. But I would prefer something with a built in battery so I can charge my gadgets while I sleep for use during the day while the solar charger recharges its batteries.
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http://hanzosoutdoors.blogspot.com/

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#180309 - 08/24/09 11:05 PM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: Dagny]
Am_Fear_Liath_Mor Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 3077
Quote:
I'll be curious to see the input.

I was frustrated a couple years ago trying to find one that would charge lithium camera batteries.

What kind of batteries are in your camera?



You may have difficulty charging Lithion Ion simply because most of the hand held solar chargers don't deliver enough amperage. Something a little more substantial is required. USB is designed to deliver 2.5 Watts i.e. 5V @ 500mA DC, so devices that can be charged via USB can in theory be charged using a solar panel which can deliever more than 2.5W, but when taking into account DC-DC convertion losses and solar variability then a 5-6 Watt panel would really be a minimum.

A 12 Watt panel should handle any USB device which can be charged via USB.


Brunton CIGS folding 12 Watt panel

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0019OO...;pf_rd_i=507846


Brunton CIGS folding 26 Watt panel (weighs in around 740 grams)

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000GEF...;pf_rd_i=507846

Powertraveller SG-010 Solargorilla Portable Solar Charger 10W solar Panel (weighs in around 650grams without its neoprene protective cover)

http://www.amazon.com/Powertraveller-SG-010-Solargorilla-Portable-Notebook/dp/B001L0POUO

These panels can all be connected to a minigorilla Lithium Battery which can deliver over 30W from a 265 gram battery

https://powertraveller.com/iwantsome/primatepower/minigorilla/

With the Brunton panels you would just need a 12V cigar/single or twin USB adapter for single or twin USB devices with the Solaris 12V panel.



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#180328 - 08/25/09 02:01 AM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
MDinana Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/08/07
Posts: 2183
Loc: Deep south... Carolina
I think there's a lot of stuff on DealExtreme (uh... a .com I think) but IIRC you have to do most of the wiring yourself. Not to mention the math of what volts or amps or watts or wattever (haha, get it?) to work with your desired power supply.

Edit: Found this in my bookmarks. don't know if it'll help, or maybe someone else here would like it:
http://edcforums.com/index.php?PHPSESSID=dc2dd236e179b8475054d80c16730162&topic=7585.0


Edited by MDinana (08/25/09 02:05 AM)

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#180338 - 08/25/09 03:16 AM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
falcon5000 Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
As Am_Fear_Liath_Mor said as well, if you have the room I would recommend a folding type, the more watts the better. I got my 40 watt from vitabon off of e-bay Click here and his military style panels are rugged and good. I am still looking for a small one like Izzy has but has a built in charger for AA and AAA that is small and compact. I haven't found anything that will do what I need it to do. The military one is awesome but consumes weight and space. It's worth it to have one and when the prices drop down again I may buy another for a spare. The 40 watt will run all my equipment I use without batteries and charges everything fast sun or clouds.
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#180341 - 08/25/09 03:38 AM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: Am_Fear_Liath_Mor]
falcon5000 Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
Solar Cells has brought that evolution to us when needed out in the field and the bigger cells are getting to a point that you could use a lot of electronic electronic devices when lost out in the woods as you are aware. When you are stranded out anywhere and all your batteries are dead or reached there 3 to 5 year life span and they all died at once because you bought all your batteries at the same time, then you need something to take over. Powering lights,radios,water purification,fire elements,gps,mp3 players or what ever you need can be a great aid if you don't mind the space and weight. You may not need anything this big for traveling (unless you go places where Matt(Polak187) goes. I'd like to see a small one like Izzy has for a day excursion if it was a little more powerful.

Here is a old pathetic video shot awhile back that needs to be updated drastically but you get the idea from the video. Best to watch with fast forwarding, can get boring as this is my norm.

Video 1
Video 2
Video 3
Video 4
Video 5
_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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#180345 - 08/25/09 07:07 AM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: falcon5000]
aloha Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 11/16/05
Posts: 1047
Loc: Hawaii, USA
Thanks guys for your suggestions. Keep em coming please.
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http://hanzosoutdoors.blogspot.com/

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#180346 - 08/25/09 07:38 AM Re: Portable solar charger [Re: falcon5000]
Grouch Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/02/08
Posts: 395
Loc: Ohio
Originally Posted By: falcon5000
The military one is awesome but consumes weight and space. It's worth it to have one and when the prices drop down again I may buy another for a spare.


What do you consider a good price per watt?

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