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Re: [John Muir Trail] Re: Has anyone hiked with the Goal Zero Switch 8 Solar Recharging Kit?

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  • Bill Hegardt
    Maybe I m a sucker, but I took a GoalZero Nomad 13 on the JMT. It can put out up to 13W, but weighs 1.6lbs. It directly charged my DSLR batteries successfully
    Message 1 of 15 , Jun 18, 2013
      Maybe I'm a sucker, but I took a GoalZero Nomad 13 on the JMT. It can put out up to 13W, but weighs 1.6lbs. It directly charged my DSLR batteries successfully when aimed at the sun in the late afternoon.

      - Bill


      On Tue, Jun 18, 2013 at 4:11 PM, sanfran_rwood <MrRedwood@...> wrote:
       



      --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, "john_friend" <yahoo@...> wrote:
      >
      >
      > I was wondering how you recharge a spare camera battery via
      > the storage battery? The camera battery is a 7.2V battery
      > (higher voltage than USB) and it doesn't have a USB charger
      > (the charger I have for it just takes 12V or 110V).

      You won't be able to charge a 7.2V battery with any of these options.

      A little technical background: the chemistry for each type of battery determines the voltage; the "quantity" will determine amperage. Lithium ion (and lithium ion polymer) are 3.7volts, NiCad is 1.2V, alkaline is 1.5V, lead acid is 2.105V. By putting multiple cells in parallel, they can multiply that. So six lead acid cells make a ~12 volt car battery. So a 7.2V lithium battery has two balanced cells.

      In voltage to charge a 7.2V is 8.4V, which is what the output of your 12V/110V charger will be.

      I suspect this is for a DSLR or other nice camera; that's where I've seen these starting to creep in. A large image sensor might be the key difference.

      The recharge options are even more limited. Take a look at Voltaic Systems' "V60 Universal Laptop Battery", which is a 16000mAh battery and associated electronics. Unfortunately, it's currently out of stock. Look at the range of adapter tips in the photo at far right; you would try to find one that plugs into your device in the same spot your current recharger does, and set the output to 12V. I'd email Voltaic about your device beforehand, though.
      http://www.voltaicsystems.com/v60.shtml

      Their "Fuse 10W Solar Laptop Charger" would be the solar charger kit you'd want, if you wanted to recharge on-trail, as opposed to using the 110V power at resupply locations. Their claim is that full sun will recharge the V60 "from 16.8 Watts of solar panels", which is odd, since this thing is only 10.2 watts.
      http://www.voltaicsystems.com/fuse10w.shtml

      As far as I can see, the folks at Goal Zero have no backpackable options here, yet. (Their Escape 150 does 12V, but weighs 13lbs.) But that doesn't mean other companies aren't out there. My recommendation is to buy spare batteries and recharge at resupply points.
      --
      Richard


    • Bill Heiser
      I used a Brunton Solaris 26 to charge Nikon EN-EL14 (7.4v, 1030 mAh) batteries on my thru-hike last summer. It s fairly heavy, though, listed at 28 oz plus
      Message 2 of 15 , Jun 18, 2013
        I used a Brunton Solaris 26 to charge Nikon EN-EL14 (7.4v, 1030 mAh) batteries on my thru-hike last summer.  It's fairly heavy, though, listed at 28 oz plus the required cables, usb charger, etc.

        http://www.brunton.com/products/solaris-12 (scroll down)

        I also used it to charge an iPhone 4 (and in fact charge the iPhone & a Nikon battery simultaneously).

        The only real downside is the bulk & the weight ... it worked great.



        sanfran_rwood wrote:
         



        --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, "john_friend" <yahoo@...> wrote:
        >
        >
        > I was wondering how you recharge a spare camera battery via
        > the storage battery? The camera battery is a 7.2V battery
        > (higher voltage than USB) and it doesn't have a USB charger
        > (the charger I have for it just takes 12V or 110V).

        You won't be able to charge a 7.2V battery with any of these options.

        A little technical background: the chemistry for each type of battery determines the voltage; the "quantity" will determine amperage. Lithium ion (and lithium ion polymer) are 3.7volts, NiCad is 1.2V, alkaline is 1.5V, lead acid is 2.105V. By putting multiple cells in parallel, they can multiply that. So six lead acid cells make a ~12 volt car battery. So a 7.2V lithium battery has two balanced cells.

        In voltage to charge a 7.2V is 8.4V, which is what the output of your 12V/110V charger will be.

        I suspect this is for a DSLR or other nice camera; that's where I've seen these starting to creep in. A large image sensor might be the key difference.

        The recharge options are even more limited. Take a look at Voltaic Systems' "V60 Universal Laptop Battery", which is a 16000mAh battery and associated electronics. Unfortunately, it's currently out of stock. Look at the range of adapter tips in the photo at far right; you would try to find one that plugs into your device in the same spot your current recharger does, and set the output to 12V. I'd email Voltaic about your device beforehand, though.
        http://www.voltaicsystems.com/v60.shtml

        Their "Fuse 10W Solar Laptop Charger" would be the solar charger kit you'd want, if you wanted to recharge on-trail, as opposed to using the 110V power at resupply locations. Their claim is that full sun will recharge the V60 "from 16.8 Watts of solar panels", which is odd, since this thing is only 10.2 watts.
        http://www.voltaicsystems.com/fuse10w.shtml

        As far as I can see, the folks at Goal Zero have no backpackable options here, yet. (Their Escape 150 does 12V, but weighs 13lbs.) But that doesn't mean other companies aren't out there. My recommendation is to buy spare batteries and recharge at resupply points.
        --
        Richard

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