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  1. #1
    eternalvoyage
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    Solar, Dynohub, Other Chargers for 18650s and USB-Chargeable Devices? (when no AC)

    Any tips or recommendations would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Here's a solar solution that seems to work: http://www.goalzero.com/

    I use a Shimano hub dynamo on my LHT to charge battery packs. It works great.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by lhendrick View Post
    Here's a solar solution that seems to work: http://www.goalzero.com/

    I use a Shimano hub dynamo on my LHT to charge battery packs. It works great.

    What kind of battery packs do you use?
    Do you use separate rectifier or regulator?

  4. #4
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    I use the Biologic Reecharge Dynamo Kit http://www.thinkbiologic.com/product...rge-dynamo-kit which has the rectifier and a battery pack. The rectifier works great, the battery pack works reasonably well (the input charge port fits too loose, to be replaced soon by Biologic). I also bought another battery pack for more capacity and flexibility from NewTrent: http://www.newtrent.com/IMP50D-dual-...y-p/imp50d.htm

    I have the Biologic Recharge battery charging from the hub dynamo and then I charge the NewTrent from the Biologic Recharge battery. I will eventually replace the Biologic Recharge battery pack with the New Trent, just need to get a coax to USB mini adapter. The NewTrent battery pack is powerful and charges my iPhone or iPad easily.

    Works great, charges from the Shimano hub dynamo and then keeps the iPhone charged and/or charges 2 AA cells via USB charger, so I can keep the Garmin Dakota charged.

    Ironically, both campsites I visited recently on a shake down mini tour had AC power to top off my iPhone, iPad and even a laptop if I needed it. They were set up for RV's!! When I got home I dumped the heavy laptop (5lbs + power brick), and plan to live with just the iPad for reading in the tent. The iPhone and GPS are handled well as I mentioned, so I CAN be independent of AC power sources if needed, but Starbucks and McDonalds and motels and libraries are everywhere so may be moot point for near term touring.
    Last edited by lhendrick; 01-01-12 at 07:32 PM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member dave5339's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lhendrick View Post
    I use the Biologic Reecharge Dynamo Kit http://www.thinkbiologic.com/product...rge-dynamo-kit which has the rectifier and a battery pack. The rectifier works great, the battery pack works reasonably well (the input charge port fits too loose, to be replaced soon by Biologic). I also bought another battery pack for more capacity and flexibility from NewTrent: http://www.newtrent.com/IMP50D-dual-...y-p/imp50d.htm
    Thanks for the links! I've been doing a lot of reading looking for something like this.

    Semper Fi

  6. #6
    Quietly Desperate Kodama's Avatar
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    I use the Biologic Reecharge Dynamo Kit http://www.thinkbiologic.com/product...rge-dynamo-kit which has the rectifier and a battery pack. The rectifier works great, the battery pack works reasonably well (the input charge port fits too loose, to be replaced soon by Biologic). I also bought another battery pack for more capacity and flexibility from NewTrent: http://www.newtrent.com/IMP50D-dual-...y-p/imp50d.htm
    Hey, did you ever get the ReeCharge to NewTrent working? If so what did you need to make the connection? I want to do the same for iPad recharging but I'd like to just skip the Biologic battery.
    "The true traveller is without goal, it is the absence of goals which creates the ultimate traveller."
    - Gao Xingjian 'Soul Mountain'

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Couldn't find coax to mini-usb adapter where I live, so I just run a usb to mini usb cable from the Biologic battery pack to the NewTrent pack and use both for lots of capacity. I lose some efficiency by going from battery to battery, but not an issue for me, and eventually I will find the adapter or get busy and solder it up myself.

  8. #8
    Quietly Desperate Kodama's Avatar
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    Thanks for the update.

    The thing is, is that the way that USB works is that you generally have some logic on either end that negotiates the current usage and such. So just converting from the power output of the ReeCharge unit to USB might not work. The Reecharge battery (and their iPhone case thing) will have that circuity and since it has USB out you are taking advantage of that. So I don't know if just doing an adaptor will work, but it'd sure be convenient. I notice that the NewTrent also has a DC power in plug, its possible one could use that, though it may expect the current to be consistent whereas from a generator it isn't. Some battery charges will retrigger their charge cycle if the power goes on and off. It may be just using it in concert with the ReeCharge Battery pack is the way to go.

    Another question - can the Reecharge battery pack charge your iPad? If so, how much of a charge?

  9. #9
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kodama View Post
    The thing is, is that the way that USB works is that you generally have some logic on either end that negotiates the current usage and such.
    Only for USB host devices. It is only to prevent over drawing of current. Typically only found in computers. There are only 4 connectors on USB cables. USB+ USB- (signals), +5vdc and ground.
    USB+/USB- doesn't even matter on this application of course. So all you have is +5 VDC supply from battery which isn't any different from output from well regulated 5v dc adapter, etc. IPAD might have a current detector in it's charging circuit where it doesn't let you even charge if certain current is not met (seen that with couple of android tablets). However, most aftermarket battery kit such as this has discharge rate that are pretty high...well above 500mA which are typically minimum for those type of device.

  10. #10
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    If you want solar you might want to take a look at this thread in CPF for useful info.

    http://www.cpfmarketplace.com/mp/sho...2-panels-added

    I've been toying with the idea of getting 2 of the Large panels since they're more robust than the larger units. Also, been toying with the idea of hooking them up to a solar tracker attached to my bike trailer.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSyScg9VRa4

  11. #11
    Quietly Desperate Kodama's Avatar
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    A quick update. Since posting my questions I bought the ReeCharge unit and battery and a New Trent IMP60D. My interest is in being able to charge the new iPad (3rd Gen) and that particular New Trent is one of a couple that they have that supports it. So this is my experience with the setup:

    The ReeCharge all works fine and as others have complained you can't see the green charging light in daylight at all but you can generally work out that it's charging. The cables are all a bit wonky what with the sealing aspect, but again you can make it work. This all works fine for charging normal cell phones and even the standard iPhone (not tested with a 4 or 4S as I don't have those). This battery will not charge (at least) the 3rd gen iPad.

    The New Trent on the other hand can charge the iPad, though only doing maybe a 40% charge. Coupling the ReeCharge battery and the New Trent gives maybe a 50-60% charge. There is a bigger New Trent but it doesn't have a USB port so not so useful for the desired application here.

    In the part that may interest people here the most the IMP600 came with a connector that was a coax to micro-USB with which I was able to plug it right into the ReeCharge Rectifier which did indeed charge it. I only just tested that out and haven't done an extended charge, but it does seem like one could forego the Biologic battery and just get the ReeCharge rectifier and the New Trent battery.

    Thanks to all who posted here, it was a big help to getting my setup worked out.
    "The true traveller is without goal, it is the absence of goals which creates the ultimate traveller."
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kodama View Post
    A quick update. Since posting my questions I bought the ReeCharge unit and battery and a New Trent IMP60D. My interest is in being able to charge the new iPad (3rd Gen) and that particular New Trent is one of a couple that they have that supports it. So this is my experience with the setup:

    The ReeCharge all works fine and as others have complained you can't see the green charging light in daylight at all but you can generally work out that it's charging. The cables are all a bit wonky what with the sealing aspect, but again you can make it work. This all works fine for charging normal cell phones and even the standard iPhone (not tested with a 4 or 4S as I don't have those). This battery will not charge (at least) the 3rd gen iPad.

    The New Trent on the other hand can charge the iPad, though only doing maybe a 40% charge. Coupling the ReeCharge battery and the New Trent gives maybe a 50-60% charge. There is a bigger New Trent but it doesn't have a USB port so not so useful for the desired application here.

    In the part that may interest people here the most the IMP600 came with a connector that was a coax to micro-USB with which I was able to plug it right into the ReeCharge Rectifier which did indeed charge it. I only just tested that out and haven't done an extended charge, but it does seem like one could forego the Biologic battery and just get the ReeCharge rectifier and the New Trent battery.

    Thanks to all who posted here, it was a big help to getting my setup worked out.
    Can you confirm that indeed the Biologic Dynamo Kit can be plugged directly into the IMP60D? Pictures? Also the new dynamo kit says it has a micro USB plug that will plug directly into their phone case or device using micro USB. Is your Dynamo kit just have the coax plug?

    The IMP60D pictured here looks to have a micro USB on the side...is that for charging?
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  13. #13
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Or does it include data transfer wires, as well ?

    Read anything about that in your owners manual?

  14. #14
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    I kind of answered my own question by watching a couple videos of the IMP60D on Youtube. The side is a micro USB and that is were the power IN goes. And the Biologic Reecharge dynamo kit has a micro USB that goes to their phone mount or your device. The only thing that I need to make sure of now is whether or not the battery can be charged while providing a charge for another device. If so, then this would be a pretty good setup.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  15. #15
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    The answer is NO. I just called the company and their batteries do not support charging while charging.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  16. #16
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    I found through another thread about another battery pack. The Hyperjuice Micro and Mini. The Micro is 3600mAh and the Mini is 7200mAh. Both of these batteries support passive charging...which is charging while charging.

    I'm probably gonna purchase the Micro unit.

    http://www.hypershop.com/HyperJuiceM...-USB-s/166.htm
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  17. #17
    trucker
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    Quote Originally Posted by trrubicon06 View Post
    The Hyperjuice Micro and Mini support passive charging...which is charging while charging. I'm probably gonna purchase the Micro unit.
    Did you try this and have any luck?
    I bought the micro but am returning it. The micro usb wouldn't stay plugged in, plus when powering up the battery, the iPhone USB out doesn't charge when an iPad is plugged into the other USB out. This is true plugged into the wall or a Biologic converter or Biologic battery.
    More importantly however, I couldn't get the battery to save charge from either the Biologic battery or converter directly. The power would pass through it but not save to the battery.
    While writing this, a New Trent NT70T has been delivered to me so I will be testing this set-up this weekend.
    If possible ai will return the Biologic battery as well and just use their converter with a third-party battery. I am hopeful the NT70T, with it's build-in USB power-in cable and 5V input that it should do the trick.
    let you know how it goes...

  18. #18
    trucker
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    Well, I have to say this is by far the simplest set-up (I guess because it really was just plug and play). I did not expect to be posting an update minutes after the last one...

    The New Trent NT70T came charged (not 100% but that's ideal for testing), and does have a built in USB line in cable, which for biking is terrific - it's can't unplug from the battery because the cable is built in!


    I plugged my ipad mini into the battery and it started to power.


    I went and plugged the battery in the Biologic battery and it powered.


    I used an adapter and plugged the Biologic converter directly into it, spun my wheel and the battery started to power up.


    The only thing I wish it did that I can confirm it does not as per trrubicon06 above, is pass-through powering. So, when the battery is plugged in to power-up, it doesn't charge a device. I will, shortly, test if this changes when the NT70T is at full-charge.


    I have a few days to decided if I am returning or keeping the Biologic battery pack. Initial thoughs are that it's pass-through capabilities make it very useful. However, would it be so bad to have to stop for a second, unplug the battery from the hub and plug the device into it?

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