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#128945 - 04/30/04 07:13 PM Home Built Solar Cell Trickle Charger
maintenanceguy Offline
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Registered: 12/02/01
Posts: 300
Loc: Southern NJ, USA
I'm getting ready for a backpacking trip that will have me out of civilization for a few days. I'd like to be able to keep in touch with home via cellphone and also have a radio in-case there's no service in my little-bit-o-wilderness.

Batteries run down and spare batteries are heavy. I'm carrying everything on my back and every little bit of weight adds up.

I'm thinking about building a solar trickle charger for my batteries. I'd need around 6 volts for everything. Cell charger puts out 6 (I just checked it) and radios have 4-1.5 V batteries.

Can I just set up a bank of photocells to the appropriate plug and plug in my cellphone. I'd add a diode so the cell can't discharge through the cells if I'm in the shade. Is it that simple?

If so, I might sew half a dozen solar cells on the top of my pack and just let things charge all day while I'm hiking so the batteries never run down.

I guess I'm making this more complicated than it probably is because I'm not sure what the cell phone's electronics do if they have a varying input voltage as I walk in shade, clouds move etc. I also don't know if I need a specific threshold current before charging can take place.

[This message has been edited by maintenanceguy (edited 04-30-2004).]
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#128946 - 05/02/04 04:56 PM Re: Home Built Solar Cell Trickle Charger
Scott35 Offline

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Registered: 10/19/00
Posts: 2707
Loc: Anaheim, CA. USA
maintenanceguy;

Send me an E-mail message, and I'll try to reply with a Schematic from my archives.

Scott

setelectric at pacbell dot net
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Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!
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