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  #1  
Old 03-31-2009
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Rechargng small batteries

Advice needed.

How would I recharge small aaa, aa, d and c-cell batteries using a 60 watt solar panel?

What are the best type of rechargeable batteries to use on board in the tropics?

Thank you.
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Old 03-31-2009
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Nickel Metal Hydride and get a 12vdc battery charger.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Nickel Metal Hydride and get a 12vdc battery charger.
Let me clarify. How would I connect a solar panel to a small battery charger like this one, which is designed to be plugged into a standard 120v household receptacle. Can this be done? I would be using it on an old boat that has no electrical system whatsoever. Nothing.

Perhaps there is another small battery charger specifically designed to be hooked-up to a separate solar panel? (I've seen the all-in-one solar/charger units and they're pretty flimsy. I would rather not go that route.)


Last edited by LoTech; 03-31-2009 at 06:46 PM.
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You could buy a solar-powered battery charger. They do sell them.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoTech View Post
Let me clarify. How would I connect a solar panel to a small battery charger like this one, which is designed to be plugged into a standard 120v household receptacle. Can this be done? I would be using it on an old boat that has no electrical system whatsoever. Nothing.
No, you can't connect a 120 volt charger to a dc output from a solar panel. Lowes has a good 12 volt charger for LiMH batteries that will plug into a cigarette lighter socket. I used one like it all last summer and was very pleased with it.
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Old 04-01-2009
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LoTech,
I would look into the MH-C9000 charger and a 12V adapter. It's less than $50 and looks very functional. I don't know what the actual input specs are as the manual lists 12V, so you may need a constant voltage regulator (Battery) connected with your panel.

I have an Energizer quick 12V charger that was probably $40. It'll take 11V to 16V input and charges in 15 min. But for the money, I'd rather have one where I can quick charge when I need it and slow charge when I don't to extend the life of my batteries.
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This MH-C9000 charger is is pretty slick. And yeah, it operates with an optional 12-volt DC cigarette lighter adapter.

My solar panel has clip-on leads for easy attachment to a 12 VDC battery. I wonder if I can connect it directly to this charger?



Quote:
Originally Posted by dgr View Post
LoTech,
I would look into the MH-C9000 charger and a 12V adapter. It's less than $50 and looks very functional. I don't know what the actual input specs are as the manual lists 12V, so you may need a constant voltage regulator (Battery) connected with your panel.

I have an Energizer quick 12V charger that was probably $40. It'll take 11V to 16V input and charges in 15 min. But for the money, I'd rather have one where I can quick charge when I need it and slow charge when I don't to extend the life of my batteries.
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I really don't know a lot about it but I would worry about lower that adequate voltages during cloudy times causing the charger to try to pull higher than normal amperages and burning the charger out. You really need to use the solar panel to charge a small wet cell battery and run the dry cell charger off of that when it is fully charged. Anything else is risky.
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I wouldn't. Most 12 VDC solar panels are 18 VDC at full sun. That's generally higher voltage than most 12VDC systems will put out and may damage the charger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LoTech View Post
This MH-C9000 charger is is pretty slick. And yeah, it operates with an optional 12-volt DC cigarette lighter adapter.

My solar panel has clip-on leads for easy attachment to a 12 VDC battery. I wonder if I can connect it directly to this charger?

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The charger is discounted to $35.00 so not much of a financial risk. If the panel puts out an occasional 18VDC instead of 12, perhaps adding some sort of mini voltage regular would be easier than using a storage battery?

I found one here for $13.00:

Quote:
The RG12 Inline Voltage Regulator delivers true, stable and filtered 12vdc voltage with capacity up to 850mA of current draw. If offers a cost effective solution for powering many of our LED products from higher DC voltages such as marine, automotive, recreational and power sports vehicles, solar products, lead acid 12v batteries and Class 2 type transformers (AC to DC adapters) which all produce unstable voltages from 13.5 to 17 VDC. Most 5mm LED products require a true 12.0V DC regulated power supply and therefore, these unstable voltages will damage the LEDs and cause failure.

Last edited by LoTech; 04-01-2009 at 07:02 PM.
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