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Charging devices?

Old 09-09-23, 09:26 AM
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Charging devices?

If no solar panels and not staying in hotels etc..

How can you charge your electronics, yet keep your bicycle and gear safe at the same time?

Any unique tips or suggestions?
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Old 09-09-23, 11:02 AM
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What are “external batteries?”, Ken.


Or you could make a salt water battery recharger.



Last edited by indyfabz; 09-09-23 at 11:05 AM.
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Old 09-09-23, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by FlippinFlags
If no solar panels and not staying in hotels etc..

How can you charge your electronics, yet keep your bicycle and gear safe at the same time?

Any unique tips or suggestions?
I take a battery pack. It is relatively small, about the size of a portable hard drive, and use it to charge the phone. The one I have can charge my phone four times. I charge it at camp grounds. I also plug in the phone or battery pack in restaurants if I stop to eat. I also generally keep my phone off, or in airplane mode while riding, unless using to check email, or a map. I use Wikicamp to find campgrounds, and also as a map. The maps are downloaded to the phone, and can be used with GPS alone with the phone in airplane mode.

Generally speaking, there is no real need to have most electronics on while riding. I have found this works well for me. No need to overthink. Most campgrounds have sites with electricity. I have also used electrical outlets in pavilions in campgrounds. One campground actually offered me a campsite next to a pavilion so I could use the outlets. I am not too worried about leaving a battery pack alone on charge, so it works well. I would not leave a phone unattended though.
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Old 09-09-23, 11:21 AM
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1. Dyno hub. Expensive (Rebuild front wheel + USB charger), Excellent for commuting but perhaps not the most reliable solution for touring.
2. Fast recharging battery pack + high capacity USB charger. You can grab many Whs in minutes at a restaurant, in campground bathrooms etc.
3. Perhaps better, use your phone as a bank. Many models (e.g. S20 and more recent) come with fast charging 5Ah batteries that can be used to recharge devices (other phone, flashlight, etc.) On tour I consume about 1.5 Wh/day, so a phone is typically good enough. I travel with a small (7W) solar panel generating more than that in reasonable weather and considering carrying a second phone (this is a critical equipment. A dead/stolen/lost phone would be a significant problem) and use it as a battery bank
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Old 09-09-23, 11:29 AM
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Turning off wifi (unless actually using it) will save enormous amounts of phone-battery power; ditto bluetooth. Good power management such as that, and a power-bank, and you're good to go
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Old 09-09-23, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz
What are “external batteries?”, Ken.


Or you could make a salt water battery recharger.


I suspect that a "3 hour tour" is longer than what will actually happen.
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Old 09-09-23, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by phughes
I take a battery pack. It is relatively small, about the size of a portable hard drive, and use it to charge the phone. The one I have can charge my phone four times. I charge it at camp grounds. I also plug in the phone or battery pack in restaurants if I stop to eat. I also generally keep my phone off, or in airplane mode while riding, unless using to check email, or a map. I use Wikicamp to find campgrounds, and also as a map. The maps are downloaded to the phone, and can be used with GPS alone with the phone in airplane mode.

Generally speaking, there is no real need to have most electronics on while riding. I have found this works well for me. No need to overthink. Most campgrounds have sites with electricity. I have also used electrical outlets in pavilions in campgrounds. One campground actually offered me a campsite next to a pavilion so I could use the outlets. I am not too worried about leaving a battery pack alone on charge, so it works well. I would not leave a phone unattended though.
What if you’re on BLM land for 14 days with only 10 lbs. of peanut butter?

But for anyone serious who who might read this thread…Yes. A couple of years ago I got a 30,000 whatever the units are external battery as swag at a company meeting. I keep my iPhone in airplane and low battery modes while riding and sleeping so as not to waste power. The external battery is great. Charges the phone quickly several times during a two-week tour. And, like you, I have no problem leaving it (rather than the phone itself) somewhere like a campground bathroom to top it off.

I’m a relatively low tech person. I still make paper cue sheets for trips and use a CatEye computer. If I can solve the “problem” posed, anyone can.
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Old 09-09-23, 03:21 PM
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In the 1980's with short lived laptop batteries and later with cell phones, I would charge while eating in a cafe and carried along a long 18ga extension cord. There are outlets placed for the cleanup people and I made use of them.

Today I would carry a few power banks to provide enough recharging when an AC outlet was not available. They are not expensive and weigh very little. The Anker 525 provides 20,000 mAh, weighs 8 ounces and costs $40.
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Old 09-09-23, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Calsun
The Anker 525 provides 20,000 mAh, weighs 8 ounces and costs $40.
Thanks for refreshing my memory as to the units. Mine mentioned above is 30,000 mAh. Definitely not an anchor.
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Old 09-09-23, 07:48 PM
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Yep, I charge my phone and a brick anytime I'm eating at a café or diner. Another good reason to have dessert or that second glass of tea.
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Old 09-09-23, 08:33 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz
And, like you, I have no problem leaving it (rather than the phone itself) somewhere like a campground bathroom to top it off.
That's exactly where my last charger and battery bank were stolen, sadly.
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Old 09-09-23, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by john m flores
That's exactly where my last charger and battery bank were stolen, sadly.
Better that than the phone, right?
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Old 09-10-23, 05:21 AM
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Like others have said, I use a USB power bank. A 20,000 mAh will last for 4 days. I also bring a dual USB plug and a couple of cables to charge everything at a pub or cafe. I never have electric while camping, but there is usually somewhere I can charge a few bits while keeping an eye on my stuff.
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Old 09-10-23, 06:24 AM
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For the genuine reader…Also look for outlets at picnic shelters in municipal parks. I have added juice to the phone at a few of those while taking breaks.
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Old 09-10-23, 06:28 AM
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I'm surprised rim dynamos have not been mentioned yet. Pedalcell and Velological are two that I know of. These are not like the old 3v systems of the 60's and 70's, but are modern efficient dynamos that don't cost a fortune and are relatively lightweight and will solve your charging needs with ease. Easy to install and don't require a dedicated wheel to use them.
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Old 09-10-23, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by john m flores
That's exactly where my last charger and battery bank were stolen, sadly.
Yeah, try that in California. I have heard countless lamentations coming from the restrooms at state parks: "Where the @#%$! is my charger/cable/battery pack?! I just left it for a minute!"

I use one of those 400 gram 6000 mah battery electric air pumps myself, that can also double as an emergency power bank, and never leave it unattended.
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Old 09-11-23, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero
I'm surprised rim dynamos have not been mentioned yet. Pedalcell and Velological are two that I know of. These are not like the old 3v systems of the 60's and 70's, but are modern efficient dynamos that don't cost a fortune and are relatively lightweight and will solve your charging needs with ease. Easy to install and don't require a dedicated wheel to use them.
Post 4 did but IME people looking to charge their phone aren't looking to spend the money on the dynamo and cache battery USB charger. My Cinq's were ~250 euro each, and dynamo hubs are 100-300 depending then there's the wheel build/rebuild.
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Old 09-11-23, 04:01 PM
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In post 4 a hub dynamo was spotlighted, but not a rim dynamo. They are less costly and the Pedalcell puts out more energy than a hub dynamo. When I start my long tours in 25 I plan on getting a rim dynamo, probably the Pedalcell as it puts out a lot of power.
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Old 09-11-23, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by FlippinFlags
If no solar panels and not staying in hotels etc..

How can you charge your electronics, yet keep your bicycle and gear safe at the same time?

Any unique tips or suggestions?
shirley, your peloton has a usb charging port!
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Old 09-13-23, 12:12 PM
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I'm a huge fan of Blackview rugged phones, they are incredible resilient. I'm about to pick a replacement for my current phone and the new BV9300 comes with a huge 15,080mHa battery (the iPhone 15 has a standard 3,877mHa battery). That would power 76 days on standby mode or 23 hours of binge watching videos.

The phone sells for $389 at Amazon, or under $300 direct from Blackview.
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Old 09-13-23, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by abdon
I'm a huge fan of Blackview rugged phones, they are incredible resilient. I'm about to pick a replacement for my current phone and the new BV9300 comes with a huge 15,080mHa battery (the iPhone 15 has a standard 3,877mHa battery). That would power 76 days on standby mode or 23 hours of binge watching videos.

The phone sells for $389 at Amazon, or under $300 direct from Blackview.
i picked up a BV4900 a couple years ago direct from blackview for about $100.
no problems to report.
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Old 09-13-23, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores
i picked up a BV4900 a couple years ago direct from blackview for about $100.
no problems to report.
my current one is a BV9700 pro. It requires a standard USB cable with a not so standard looong cable tip. It also lacks a headphone port, you would need an adapter for the deep seated USB port to use a wired headphone. I'm hoping their new phone at the very least can use a regular size cable
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Old 09-13-23, 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by abdon
my current one is a BV9700 pro. It requires a standard USB cable with a not so standard looong cable tip. It also lacks a headphone port, you would need an adapter for the deep seated USB port to use a wired headphone. I'm hoping their new phone at the very least can use a regular size cable
This is an extended USB c tip, usually about 10mm. They can be found on Amazon, and are common for rugged phones from makers such as Blackview (that I assume are for the Chinese market).

I have a BV9600 that I use for off-line navigation. I've had it for 3 years, used it for thousands of motorcycle miles on and off road, and never had a single issue. It's been very solid. I usually charge it wirelessly though.
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Old 09-13-23, 05:47 PM
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Originally Posted by hopperja
This is an extended USB c tip, usually about 10mm. They can be found on Amazon, and are common for rugged phones from makers such as Blackview (that I assume are for the Chinese market).

I have a BV9600 that I use for off-line navigation. I've had it for 3 years, used it for thousands of motorcycle miles on and off road, and never had a single issue. It's been very solid. I usually charge it wirelessly though.
i din' no dat!

standard usb charger cables don't fit the phone, i assumed it had something to do with the waterproofing on the port. if it ever broke, thought i might have to trim the plastic plug housing on another cable. that was wrong.

replacement is $8 on amazon
https://www.amazon.com/PwrON-Univers.../dp/B08YK39NTP

but it's just a longer standard-profile usb. looks like the type-C is a new shape with no up/down.
https://www.amazon.com/UNIDOPRO-Exte.../dp/B07SSPY7RL

the charger tip that came with the BV4900 looks like a regular USB connector, but about 1mm longer than standard.
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Old 09-13-23, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by gauvins
1. Dyno hub. Expensive (Rebuild front wheel + USB charger), Excellent for commuting but perhaps not the most reliable solution for touring.
why do you think these are not well suited to touring? I thought they seemed especially suited to touring and had intended to have a new wheel built around one of these for my upcoming trip but then ran out of time to order the parts.

There are less expensive alternatives to the super pricey German models. Shimano and shutter precision come to mind. My main complaint is the IUSB adapters are crazy expensive. There is one that comes in a box that sells for around $120, and there are DIY versions if you have any soldering skills.

anyway, I haven’t used one so I’d like to know if there is a good reason not to use them.

Regarding OP, not sure if they are like this everywhere but the McDonald’s around Ontario have charging ports and wifi so if I’ve had no luck with power at a campsite I’ll grab a coffee and plug in.
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