Flexible Solar Panels^

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Mike Marshall
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Flexible Solar Panels^

Post by Mike Marshall » Sat Mar 11, 2006 8:06 pm

Is anyone using these for extended trips?
http://shop.altenergystore.com/itemdesc ... Q6~Tp~.htm
Really neat unit that folds up and is capable of powering most electronic toys.
GPS, Radio Charging, phone, etc.
Solves most battery problems?

Douglas, with your toys you need to cover the deck with them!!!!

MikeM

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Douglas Wilcox
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Post by Douglas Wilcox » Sat Mar 11, 2006 8:36 pm

MikeM>
Douglas, with your toys you need to cover the deck with them!!!!
Hello Mike, my favourite toy don't need no batteries!

Image

Douglas :o)

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Mike Marshall
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Favourite Toy!!

Post by Mike Marshall » Sat Mar 11, 2006 9:27 pm

Douglas,
That is next on my list, now the Quest is being prepared!!
A pint sized Kelly Kettle!!


Still bouncing St Kilda around.

Regards
MikeM

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councildog
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Post by councildog » Sun Mar 12, 2006 3:43 pm

Douglas
is that the 1 pint kelly kettle or the 2.5 pint one?
and are the flames ment to be shooting out the top that much

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Skerryvore
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Post by Skerryvore » Sun Mar 12, 2006 3:47 pm

Great Picture, looks like it's first fire up? going by how clean it is.
Guess it's the 1 pint better sized for the kayaker?

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Jim
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Re: Flexible Solar Panels

Post by Jim » Mon Mar 13, 2006 11:00 am

Mike Marshall wrote:Is anyone using these for extended trips?
http://shop.altenergystore.com/itemdesc ... Q6~Tp~.htm
Really neat unit that folds up and is capable of powering most electronic toys.
GPS, Radio Charging, phone, etc.
Solves most battery problems?

Douglas, with your toys you need to cover the deck with them!!!!

MikeM
Experimented with solar panels a few years ago - in fact I still have them somewhere and the demonstration thing I made up from a kit. They do need to be pointing pretty well directly at the sun to work, which was nicely demonstrated by the demo - A fan made from a simple blade attached to a small electric motor. Just placing it inthe window didn't work, I had to tilt it until it pointed straight at the sun before there was enough juice to turn the fan, which by then was pointing in some strange direction :)

I did hook the panels up to my GPS (bought a spare battery cover and drilled a hole in it to get the wires in) but it used power faster than the cells provided it (would extend battery life). I therefore never got round to making a waterproof setup (stick the lot in an ortileb map case?) and trialling it at sea.

I reckon the biggest issue is having enough cells pointing directly enough at the sun - as the boat rolls and pitches the angles change, as the sun tracks across the sky the angles change, as clouds obscure the sun they stop generating. All of which suggests to me that a fixed installation on a sea kayak is not going to all that useful - carrying spare batteries is not environmentally friendly but will probably take less space although adding more weight.

Obviously connecting these things to equipment you want to keep waterproofed is a bit of a challenge too. A much easier solution might be to get one of those solar battery chargers (you plug the batteries directly into the back of it) and stick it in a clear dry bag on deck and hope you will get enough sunshine to charge or partly charge used batteries over the course of the trip.

The main caveat to the above is that solar cell technology is improving all the time - they may now be able to get useful power output at less than optimal angles or in slightly cloudy conditions.

JIM

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Mike Marshall
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Solar Panels

Post by Mike Marshall » Mon Mar 13, 2006 11:50 am

Jim,
Thanks for that!
I only want to run my Ipaq with it (2.5hours runtime with Memory Map on board) as the bluetooth GPS I have (Navman 4000) runs for 20+ hours on three AAA's.
5Watt should be enough.
Bluetooth GPS works under the hatch, ipaq in the aquabag.
Hmm...... connection from solar panels to ipaq??


MikeM

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Jim
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Re: Solar Panels

Post by Jim » Mon Mar 13, 2006 1:03 pm

Mike Marshall wrote:Hmm...... connection from solar panels to ipaq??
My palm charges through the sync connection socket (usually plugged into a cradle) but the serial sync leads avaliable from palm don't do charging, however I did find a system in maplins for charging anything from anywhere! It has a USB connector at one end which you can obviously plug into a PC/laptop/USB hub, but they also make a cigarette lighter adapter and an ordinary 3-pin plug that you can plug the USB into. THe other end has something like a small Din or PS2 connector, and to that you attach any of a large range of specialist connectors, for mobile phones, PDAs and all sorts of other stuff.

They had a connector for the palm and I'm sure there will be one for a ipaq, so all you need to do is find a USB wiring diagram and wire a USB socket (get an expansion plate designed to plug into onboard header, and take one off it) onto the solar panels. It's simple DC stuff, USB has 4 wires, Data Send, Data Receive, + 5v and ground, IIRC so anyone who's done science at secondary school could do the wiring!

The other advantage is that with the other adapters you can also charge in your car, hotel room etc. without taking the whole cradle with you!

JIM

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Mike Marshall
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IPaq Charging

Post by Mike Marshall » Mon Mar 13, 2006 1:09 pm

Jim,
I already have a DC charging cable for the Ipaq.
Just a question of where the plugs go and how thay are kept away from the salty stuff.
However, an Electrical Engineer by trade I should be able to manage that part!!!

MikeM

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Douglas Wilcox
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Post by Douglas Wilcox » Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:25 pm

Alan M>
Great Picture, looks like it's first fire up? going by how clean it is.
Guess it's the 1 pint better sized for the kayaker?
Councildog>
is that the 1 pint kelly kettle or the 2.5 pint one?
and are the flames ment to be shooting out the top that much
Hi guys, yes its the pint size and yes the flames are meant to shoot out the top. That's a 1pt Mk IVa model (ser no 100074563) and it has the modified afterburner unit. On a breezy Hebridean shore nothing boils fater than a Kelly Kettle. Of course if there is no wind and you are being bothered with midges you can use the multifuel capability (built into all the models) and add some damp grass or sea weed to the mix. This produces clouds of smoke and steam to keep the blighters at bay.

Mine also has the Party Popper function to give even the most disheartened group's spirits a lift...... simply drop some bladder wrack down the spout while no one is looking!

I understand KK are still working on the DC converter which will clip onto the after burner end of the kettle. Apparently prototypes have been frying delicate lion batteries with too many volts and amps!

Of course you could adopt more modern technology and just open a flask instead, or use a self igniting gas stove or even use a Calmac ferry or a jetski rather than old fashioned paddles to take you to the Hebridean Isle of your dreams!

Douglas :o)

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Jim
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Post by Jim » Mon Mar 13, 2006 2:57 pm

Douglas Wilcox wrote:I understand KK are still working on the DC converter which will clip onto the after burner end of the kettle. Apparently prototypes have been frying delicate lion batteries with too many volts and amps!
Hmm, a low pressure steam turbine generator for charging batteries could probably be made into a fairly compact unit. I wonder if the burning of fossil fuels on a small scale to recharge batteries is acceptable? I am assuming of course that there would be a primitive condenser built in to make it as efficient as possible.

Of course a possible dual purpose for the condenser could be making fresh water from sea water rather than returning it to the boiler.

Anyone know how to file a patent?

JIM

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Solar Power From a Backpack

Post by Totnes Kayaks » Mon Mar 13, 2006 5:33 pm

Hi,
Just thought you might be interested in a range of products available from Clear Blue Hawaii. They call them "Solarpac" and the range consists of a backpack, claw or bag that basically incorporates a solar panel to power iPods, Mobiles, satellite radios and portable DVD players. If you want to find out more please take a look at: http://www.clearbluehawaii.com/products ... index.html

I do not have them in the shop yet but can get them if you want me to find out more.

Regards Tom

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Mike Marshall
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Kelly Kettle

Post by Mike Marshall » Mon Mar 13, 2006 10:33 pm

Douglas,
I am reliably informed that the unit I have just ordered is actually a Mark V model. This has a "stepped" inside to slow the chimney action down and concentrate the heat more. Intriguing principle??
Anyway I will let you know when I receive it along with the serial number.
Maybe we should start a register?

Regards
Mike

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Post by Rockpool » Mon Mar 13, 2006 11:43 pm

See also:
Sliva Solar1 for AA batteries
Silva Solar2 for car chargers

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Pelagic
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Post by Pelagic » Tue Mar 14, 2006 1:00 am

I am reliably informed that the unit I have just ordered is actually a Mark V model.
Hang on........new boat, new paddles, wizzy stepped inside turbo nutter Kelly kettle..............(sorry Mk V)................your planning something arnt you Mike?

Phil

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Mike Marshall
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Kit List!!

Post by Mike Marshall » Tue Mar 14, 2006 6:58 pm

Phil,
If you knew mate, that is only half the kit I have recently bought!!!
Cant move in the house for it!!

The Quest will be down to the deck in the water, but once its moving, that momentum will carry me for miles!!!
May even be enough for St Kilda?

Mike

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MikeB
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Post by MikeB » Wed Mar 22, 2006 4:14 pm

Wonderful the way a discussion on high-tech wizardry manages to turn into a discussion on an old-fangled piece of black magic from the Emerald Isle.

I remember my parents had one of these things for family picnics about 40 years ago! (Sniff - leans on zimmer and sucks gums) - we kids used to enjoy moving it around to make burn patterns on the machair for amusement. How times change!

Anyway - any updates or news of the efficacy or otherwise of solar panels would be good. We know the Kelly Kettle works fine - - - -

;-)

Mike.

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Douglas Wilcox
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Post by Douglas Wilcox » Wed Mar 22, 2006 8:22 pm

OK Mike you win. I have actually got the Silva panel for AA batteries. Having given it a good try I now keep it in the same drawer as my Pentax Optio WPi. It is equally as functional and useful.
Douglas.

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Post by Mark R » Wed Mar 22, 2006 8:45 pm

Douglas Wilcox wrote:OK Mike you win. I have actually got the Silva panel for AA batteries. Having given it a good try I now keep it in the same drawer as my Pentax Optio WPi. It is equally as functional and useful.
I considered buying some solar panels this spring, and you've confirmed what my instinct suggested....
Mark Rainsley
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Post by active4seasons » Thu Mar 23, 2006 8:02 am

Just think though Douglas if you didn't buy these things the rest of us wouldn't benefit from the advances in science made through development,
Ollie
Developing Desire for Adventure!

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Mike Marshall
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Post by Mike Marshall » Thu Mar 23, 2006 6:52 pm

Douglas,
You need to open an Ebay shop to offload all the gadgets you have found to be "equally functional and useful" (You already said they are "in the draw")
You would probably get enough to buy a new Quest LV??!!!!!

MikeM

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