Battery chargers

Written by ralph on 12/11/2013. Posted in Kit and Equipment

Because I want to capture video and still images throughout our journeys and in order to make the images as varied and interesting as possible I decided to use a variety of cameras.

On our trip to Tunisia I used an Olympus E510 DSLR and a Sony HDD Camcorder.  In order to expand and improve on the quality and flexibility of the videos I have upgraded the DSLR to a Pentax K5ii(s) and added a GoPro HD Hero 2 and Kodak Playsport 3.  Using these, in addition to our iPhones, meant that I could capture a variety of angles (both inside and outside the car and whilst on foot).This worked reasonably well on our trip to the Arctic Circle (Journey to The Land of the Midnight Sun).  For subsequent trips I hope to add to this list of equipment and I shall provide a detailed article at a later date.

One consequence of a range of equipment if the number of batteries that need charging and the fact that they need to be readily accessible.

Initially, on our 2009 Morocco trip, I used a small inverter and the supplied 240v chargers.  However this was clumsy, took up a lot of space and wasn’t very efficient.


disc06 Doing some research I found that 12v chargers could be bought, from ebay and Amazon, for each of the devices that we used.They all used a similar base but with a different ‘top’ fitting for the relevant battery.  Each came with a 240v and a 12v cable.Better still they were all really cheap at less that £8 each.
disc05 To simplify the installation I bought a ‘4-way’ lighter socket extension and mounted this on the bulkhead behind the drivers seat.The 4 chargers were then ‘tie-wrapped’ together to form a single block and then, using self-adhesive velcro, fixed to the top shelf.Each charger was labelled (for easy identification) and could easily be reached from the passenger seat.

The single cable was run to the rear of the car and connected to the auxiliary battery circuit.  That way the batteries are charged by the solar panel when the engine isn’t running.

This is a far tidier, accessible and practical option than using the inverter.


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