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Thread: Has anyone used the folding portable solar power sheets?

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    Default Has anyone used the folding portable solar power sheets?

    I'd like to get a solar powered battery charger for backpacking this summer. Does anyone have any recomendations?
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    We've used rigid chargers. We have one that is seven volts that does AAA through D cell batteries in groups of four and charges cell phones and other items that run on six volts. It is slow. We usually give it two days to recharge 4 AA batteries but then that will depend on how much sunlight you're getting.

    Another thing we use is the top off a solar powered "patio" light to charge AA batteries.

    Remember that you need good, full sunlight to get them to work well and depending upon the size and capacity of your batteries it may take quite awhile for them to reach full charge.

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    I have a Brunton Explorer. It folds up to 9" X 5" and weighs about 1 pound. It will deliver 5 watts in full sun. The thing I like about it is that it has a USB port so any USB cord can be used on it. I usually carry a mini B USB and a micro B USB so I can power just about anything I have.

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    Can't remember the brand but I have a small solar panel cell phone charger that has a panel of about 3"X5" to charge cell phones but it takes a while.
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    Hmm. I need it to charge 4 AAs for my camera. Full bright sunlight might be hard to come by. 24 hours of slightly overcast is much more normal. So do you think the extra hours of daylight will help offset the not so bright and clear days? It's ok if it takes a day or so.

    Mosquitomountainman, how does that top off the patio lights work?
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    I have a Sunlinq 6.5W charger that folds up to a 5x9x.5" package. I got it to provide a trickle charge on my truck when I leave it parked for an extended time. Can hang from a backpack for charging on the move. Comes with a lot of cables, connectors and a storage pouch.
    I like it.
    http://www.solar-review.com/reviews/...ew.cfm/id/22//
    Last edited by pete lynch; 04-07-2011 at 05:05 AM.

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    Hmm. I need it to charge 4 AAs for my camera. Full bright sunlight might be hard to come by. 24 hours of slightly overcast is much more normal. So do you think the extra hours of daylight will help offset the not so bright and clear days? It's ok if it takes a day or so.

    Numbers that I have seen before stated anywere from 50% to 5% efficiency depending on how heavy the cloud cover was.
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    I haven't bought one, but have thought about it. Make sure and do weight comparisons. Depending on how long your trip is, it might be lighter (and cheaper) to just bring extra batteries.
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    Hand Crank Generator http://www.unclebobstips.com/generat..._Generator.asp

    I would think you could charge AA's also ..

    hand crank generators are not merely abstract educational devices. Hand crank or "wind-up" generators provide real-time emergency power when regular utility is not available. For example, a hand-cranked modern portable cell phone charger never runs out of power and never needs to be replaced. While turning the handle may not be much fun, this hand cranked generator is an ideal emergency standby power source, utilizing the lowest tech solution to powering high-tech cell phones! (With this modern device, turning the hand crank generator handle at a speed of about two revolutions per second generates power that is used to recharge your cell-phone battery. At 1.5 revs per second, the unit gives about 5V of power, and at 2 revs per second, it gives close to its full rated 6.2V. Most regular chargers tend to provide between 4.5V-6V, so this output voltage is completely satisfactory).

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    Quote Originally Posted by pete lynch View Post
    I have a Sunlinq 6.5W charger that folds up to a 5x9x.5" package. I got it to provide a trickle charge on my truck when I leave it parked for an extended time. Can hang from a backpack for charging on the move. Comes with a lot of cables, connectors and a storage pouch.
    I like it.
    http:/http://www.solar-review.com/re...ew.cfm/id/22//
    Even removing the extra http: and / I couldn't get the link to work. But I'll look it up.

    Quote Originally Posted by crashdive123 View Post
    Numbers that I have seen before stated anywere from 50% to 5% efficiency depending on how heavy the cloud cover was.
    That would work.

    Quote Originally Posted by finallyME View Post
    I haven't bought one, but have thought about it. Make sure and do weight comparisons. Depending on how long your trip is, it might be lighter (and cheaper) to just bring extra batteries.
    Very true. I've seen some that are basically a sheet that can be rolled up when not in use but would need to add the weight of the recharger as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Justin Case View Post
    Hand Crank Generator http://www.unclebobstips.com/generat..._Generator.asp

    I would think you could charge AA's also ..
    I have hand crank LED flash lights. They work ok in that you can leave them in your vehicle in the winter and not worry about batteries freezing and busting. But they aren't something you can effectivly use to do something relaxing like reading as they require too much interruptions to wind up lol.
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    You can also use a hand drill as a charger which is a bit cheaper since you may already have it but you do have to power it by hand. Battery operated or electric will work equally well.

    http://www.zetatalk.com/energy/tengy05n.htm

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    I have seen those sheets that are supposed to unfold for your pack, kinda pricey, so was kinda watching this thread to see if they worth the money.

    Although this isn't a sheet, a little bulkier but priced right.

    I bought one of these, was a little cheaper a couple of years ago, but works well, as long as you point it to the sun.
    Has a meter so you can tell how much charge you are getting.

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    http://www.ccrane.com/more-categorie...y-charger.aspx
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    Now Thats COOL !

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