High Gear Solar Pod

4:22 p.m. on July 14, 2011 (EDT)
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6:47 p.m. on July 14, 2011 (EDT)
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H Giftogab,

This was the unit you found at Costco? Battery is about 50% the capacity of an iphone 4 battery, to my knowledge. That will give you about 3.5 hours of additional talk time. Not sure that this is robust enough to keep your phone charge maintained throughout your adventure towards everest.

It apparently takes 8 hours of full sunlight to re-charge the internal battery. I've found that Apple's proprietary circuitry is very picky when it comes to constant currents in chargers. Example, my Brunton solaris wont charge my iphone directly, even in full-sunlight. I run it through a brunton sync. Works well.

Best is to try it during a day hike or overnight and see how well it keeps your iphone up to par. good luck.

5:35 a.m. on July 15, 2011 (EDT)
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I have a solar flashlight, it is quite useful, too! I bought it at http://www.flashlightbox.com

9:41 a.m. on July 15, 2011 (EDT)
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I had it on my pack the other day...very sunny day and was on the trail about six ours. No measurable charge by sun. I got it at Steep and Cheap. Want to be sure to have something to charge the iPhone and possibly my laptop while on the trek.......would LOVE some tried and true suggestions!

11:15 p.m. on July 18, 2011 (EDT)
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This is my experience shared in an ipod thread. link below quoted text...

 

"Re: Do you bring your Ipod with you on camping/hiking trips?

bheiser1 said:

XterroBrando, I did say earlier that I carry my iPhone only because I don't want to leave it in my vehicle at the trailhead.  What I really meant to say was "I would love to use it for the GPS & other "outdoors" apps, but don't becuase the battery life is so bad, but I carry it anyway to avoid leaving it..."

I'll have to read up on the "Solaris 6", thanks for the tip.  I wonder how it would work to drape the solar charger on the outside of one's pack while on summer hikes in the Sierra ...

Meanwhile, my DeLorme PN-60w is great, but after using the iPhone, the tiny screen is hard to take ...  then again the PN-60w outlives the iPhone battery life by a long shot...

Bheiser1, the solaris 6 works very well strapped to the outside of the pack, but not in a straight link to the iphone - as it needs a perfectly smooth delivery of currrent to charge quickly. Other electronics and phones do not have the same problem. It will charge, but very slowly. it can work better if you use a car charger with it's provided car-charger connector.

My Sync, however, has proven excellent for providing a fast, clean charge. Plus I can charge a dead iphone 7 times before the sync needs to be replenished. A great combo, but not that light weight at 12.5 oz for the sync and 5 oz for the Solaris (7.2 if you take all of the different connectors with you). You may want to look into the Inspire, which is like the sync but smaller in size and weight (5.5 oz), but also with less capacity (3200 mAh vs 9000 mAh). I like the sync better because I can pack the battery in my pack's top pocket, connected to the solar panel strapped to the back, and attach the charging pod to my shoulder strap. I can plug the iphone into it at any time, without stopping on the trail. I may buy the Inspire for short overnight trips."

http://www.trailspace.com/forums/gear-selection/topics/93518.html#94483

 

6:39 a.m. on July 20, 2011 (EDT)
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I recall meeting some hikers on the AT in New England (Maine).

Their first time in the East, they being from the West Coast.   They had the solar-chargers on the top of their backpacks, but they were not prepared for so much tree cover.   Said the chargers were almost useless.   All their batteries were dead.

                                                  ~r2~

7:42 p.m. on July 20, 2011 (EDT)
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Yes, r2, that would create a significant challenge. We don't have as many issues with that out here, to your point.

 

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