Off Grid Home Forums Technical Discussion Solar for bicycle

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    I’m currently touring on my push bike and want to improve my solar setup, but have no idea what I’m doing!

    I need to power the following devices:

    • Mobile phone – nothing fancy, doesn’t require too much power, probably charge ever 4 days.
    • Playstation Portable (PSP) – currently only on when I need to check the maps stored on it, but would be good if I could use it for music too!
    • Rechargeable AA batteries for digital camera (2500mAh) and bike lights (2000mAh). The two 2500 batteries need charging about once a week or so, the 2000 very rarely.

    I bought a small panel with a built in 2000mAh battery (PortableEnergy from Maplin), which can charge all of these with USB – the panel is about 4cm by 10cm, not sure what wattage. It manages just about ok with the phone, struggles with the PSP and not a chance with the batteries.

    I’m looking to upgrade to something a bit bigger, but obviously as light as possible, as I have to carry it on my bike. I could get a dynamo charger, but I often stop for several days and don’t want any extra drag when I’m riding.

    • Any idea what sort of wattage I need?
    • What sort of panel? Flexi?
    • Do I need to buy a battery as well? How big?
    • Can I charge through USB or do I need to carry a transformer for each device?

    Sorry these are such basic questions, but I haven’t had any luck finding answers to any of them.



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