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Newbie needs Help please

Posted: Mon May 19, 2014 6:02 pm
by ohnonothimagain

I'm new to a lot of forums, and especially electronic ones as I'm a geek at heart, but dumb when it comes to actually doing anything. I'm looking for a solar set-up where I can charge mostly AA's and 18650's outdoors. I've seen other solar chargers online that only charge Ni-Cad's and Nimh batteries but nothing that can charge both AA NiMH batteries and 18650's... I don't know where to look-where to start, much less how to put one together. I'd like a system that's fairly compact and easy to use. One that won't take 2-3 days to charge up batteries, and something that's fairly unbreakable and sturdy. Sounds like a lot to ask for, huh? The way I figure it-if I have a lot of Nimh AA's and 18650's, I can use a solar panel all the time to recharge them. And one other question if I may? I don't seem to see much about Li Ion aa's or other batteries as far as recharging them. Which battery is less prone to memory effect problems, and do I cycle all types of batteries so they work better and hold a charge longer? Thanks so much- I know I've asked a lot for a newbie, but I need help. Everyone seems nice to each other here as I've been treated nasty before on other forums for being so dumb when it comes to asking questions.. Thanks, onnha

Re: Newbie needs Help please

Posted: Tue May 20, 2014 6:35 am
by cottonpickers
To be fair there's a fair amount to lean about li-ion etc so don't panic!

There's a couple options you have
1. Purchase a ''multi charger' capable of charging many cell sizes and chemistries and a suitable solar panel, and you should be good to go. I can supply this (double folding solar panel and commercial charger that takes all cell types ) for $199 delivered. Advantage is it will look nice, be portable and be simple to use, capable of charging two cells at a time of either chemistry fairly quickly. (I need to check how quick , but likely 4 hours for 18650 and 2 for nimh)

2. Purchase a single panel solution and swap leads when you want to charge different things. $59 delivered or $69 with a soft slip case. Would come with a li--ion charge (5-6 hours to charge a 18650 -one cell at a time) and nimh charger (14 hours to charge 2 nimh aa or aaas) advantages is that it's cheap and durable. Bit fiddly, more care needed, slower, not as nice looking

3. Purchase a mini folder like first pic along with leads /chargers in the second option . $79 delivered. Bit fiddly and care needed. slower than 1. But nice looking

Lion doesn't suffer memory issues, but the do hold progressively less charge over time, made worse if kept fully charged or kept it hot conditions. They should not be over discharged or charged below zero degrees.

Feel free to ask further qs

Re: Newbie needs Help please

Posted: Tue May 20, 2014 1:42 pm
by ohnonothimagain
WOW- thanks so much for the prompt response. I will consider the options. I thank you.