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Solar phone charger
#1
Do any of you have one? I just ordered this one (http://www.cellphoneshop.net/solar.html ).

I can charge my phone in my vehicle, but in a more serious situation where fuel may be scarce or unavailable, I thought it might be helpful. I need to see if I can find something similar for rechargeable batteries.
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#2
That's a great idea. Although your link didn't work. Saw some on Amazon though....will have to tuck that away for future shopping...
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#3
RugerGirl;33652 Wrote:That's a great idea. Although your link didn't work. Saw some on Amazon though....will have to tuck that away for future shopping...

Try it now. For some reason it was including the close parentheses and period in the hot link.
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#4
gnbrotz;33650 Wrote:I need to see if I can find something similar for rechargeable batteries.

They're out there That one will do 2 batteries of the same type at once. It handles D, C, AA and AAA NiMH batteries. I'm sure there are plenty more options out there, that was just the first one I saw.
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#5
Do they make one that's portable but powerful enough to power a laptop? Or is it going to be a huge, bulky, expensive panel that is required? Huh
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#6
LifeInPa;34101 Wrote:Do they make one that's portable but powerful enough to power a laptop? Or is it going to be a huge, bulky, expensive panel that is required? Huh

I believe something you'd need to recharge (not power) a laptop would be rather large and here's why. Most laptops run on 19 to 21vdc, not 12 or 5vdc. Most normal solar panels supply around 5 or 12vdc. To get one to supply more, you'd need a bigger panel.

But, I do have a solution for you, and you're gonna plotz when you realize how easy it is. Get yourself the Targus 12v laptop charger for your machine. It's one that plugs directly into your car and supplies the 19 or 21v to recharge your laptop. Then you get the solar charger that keeps your battery charged in your car.

Do not run an inverter in your car and expect a solar charger to keep up on having the battery charged vs what is being used by the inverter. Using inverters is very inefficient because you're converting DC to AC to DC again. When you can, try to avoid those conversions.
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#7
streaker69;34142 Wrote:
LifeInPa;34101 Wrote:Do they make one that's portable but powerful enough to power a laptop? Or is it going to be a huge, bulky, expensive panel that is required? Huh

I believe something you'd need to recharge (not power) a laptop would be rather large and here's why. Most laptops run on 19 to 21vdc, not 12 or 5vdc. Most normal solar panels supply around 5 or 12vdc. To get one to supply more, you'd need a bigger panel.

But, I do have a solution for you, and you're gonna plotz when you realize how easy it is. Get yourself the Targus 12v laptop charger for your machine. It's one that plugs directly into your car and supplies the 19 or 21v to recharge your laptop. Then you get the solar charger that keeps your battery charged in your car.

Do not run an inverter in your car and expect a solar charger to keep up on having the battery charged vs what is being used by the inverter. Using inverters is very inefficient because you're converting DC to AC to DC again. When you can, try to avoid those conversions.

That's a neat idea Streaker, thank you. I assume it's possible to just eliminate the car and buy an extra car battery that's plugged into a Solar charging panel, then just connect a 12V DC outlet into the battery so you can use this 12V DC laptop charger?

However with this solution it seems imperfect and requires a lot of time/patience. It seems like this setup is incapable of powering and charging a laptop without depleting the car battery before the solar panel has a chance of replenishing the battery. At that point I would assume such a solar panel would require days to recharge the battery? My experience with these devices is that they're used to maintain a charge on a car battery in a car that's being stored, where the alarm system and other low draw electronics are depleting the battery slowly.

How much would one have to spend to get a panel that recharges a car battery in mere hours and even provides enough juice to maintain the charge while a laptop draws power from said battery? How big of a panel are we talking about? Several feet in length and width? Huh
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LifeInPa, proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Sep 2012.
Sanity, yours if you can keep it. Confused
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#8
gnbrotz;33650 Wrote:Do any of you have one? I just ordered this one (http://www.cellphoneshop.net/solar.html ).

I can charge my phone in my vehicle, but in a more serious situation where fuel may be scarce or unavailable, I thought it might be helpful. I need to see if I can find something similar for rechargeable batteries.

I'm anxious to hear how well it works when you get it. I have a car charger that charges everything much slower than plugging into the wall. I'm curious if the solar chargers will do any better.
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#9
OK, you got my interest. Going to have to do some research on these things and see what I come up with. A quick internet search definitely interested me. I thought they were all junk, but some of them got pretty good reviews.
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In the beginning a Patriot is a scarce man, Hated, Feared and Scorned; but in time, when his cause succeeds, the timid join them, because then it cost nothing to be a Patriot.... Mark Twain.
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#10
LifeInPa;34193 Wrote:
streaker69;34142 Wrote:I believe something you'd need to recharge (not power) a laptop would be rather large and here's why. Most laptops run on 19 to 21vdc, not 12 or 5vdc. Most normal solar panels supply around 5 or 12vdc. To get one to supply more, you'd need a bigger panel.

But, I do have a solution for you, and you're gonna plotz when you realize how easy it is. Get yourself the Targus 12v laptop charger for your machine. It's one that plugs directly into your car and supplies the 19 or 21v to recharge your laptop. Then you get the solar charger that keeps your battery charged in your car.

Do not run an inverter in your car and expect a solar charger to keep up on having the battery charged vs what is being used by the inverter. Using inverters is very inefficient because you're converting DC to AC to DC again. When you can, try to avoid those conversions.

That's a neat idea Streaker, thank you. I assume it's possible to just eliminate the car and buy an extra car battery that's plugged into a Solar charging panel, then just connect a 12V DC outlet into the battery so you can use this 12V DC laptop charger?

However with this solution it seems imperfect and requires a lot of time/patience. It seems like this setup is incapable of powering and charging a laptop without depleting the car battery before the solar panel has a chance of replenishing the battery. At that point I would assume such a solar panel would require days to recharge the battery? My experience with these devices is that they're used to maintain a charge on a car battery in a car that's being stored, where the alarm system and other low draw electronics are depleting the battery slowly.

How much would one have to spend to get a panel that recharges a car battery in mere hours and even provides enough juice to maintain the charge while a laptop draws power from said battery? How big of a panel are we talking about? Several feet in length and width? Huh

Well, to figure all that out, you'd actually have to take some measurements and do some rough calculations. What I would do is get the 12V power supply for my laptop, and put a current meter in line with it and have it start charging the laptop. Take a measurement on how much current it's drawing, on average over an hour.

Then, hook up a solar panel with a current meter in line and see how much current it's adding to the battery on a bright day. If the solar panel is putting less in than the charger is drawing out, then obviously it can't keep up. From knowing how much the laptop charger is drawing, you can then shop around for a solar panel that's able to supply enough current to at least keep up.

I have everything here that I can conduct a little experiment. I'll see if I can whip something up as an example and post the results.
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