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New Power Product
#1
Hey everyone, full disclosure.  I have invented a new power product for emergency use, called the "Power Out Box" after my dad was without power for a week last year in Florida.

Basically it's an ammo can that holds 8 D cell batteries (to give you 12v) and then on the side you have 2 usb outlets for charging phones, a cig socket for small fans and charging of ham gear, and an integrated LED. 

The point of using D cell batteries instead of rechargeable (which is the #1 question) is  A: When a rechargeable battery dies, you have to have a place to recharge it before you can use it again. In a week long power outage, you'd have no place to refill it. With this, you can just pop in 8 more D cells (assuming you have them) and keep on rocking.    B: keeping the cost to the end user down.

The other thing that makes this better than a USB rechargeable battery pack is that you have true 12v. So you can power other devices (mentioned above).  Yes, USB lights and fans exist, but they are pretty small and are not going to accomplish much


I'm right on the edge of doing a kickstarter to get this going. I've got the prototype all set, suppliers lined up, mounting plates designed, etc.. It's all set to go. I just need my logo stickers to come in and to make an official demo video.

But I'd like to hear some feedback from you all first to see if there is anything else I'm missing.   In doing my Google research, there are a million rechargable battery packs out there on Amazon and other websites. Some are designed better than others, and some have better specs and features than others. But I have yet to see one that uses standard batteries. 

So, tell me what you think!


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#2
That's pretty cool!

How long would it run a fan?  

I could see it even using rechargeable D cells like Tenergy if you have a solar charger to recharge the D cells.  I have a 14W fold-up solar panel that uses USB attachments.  I'd just need a D cell specific charger.  This would be good for the night times as far as some light or a fan.  Which is very handy in Florida!
Governmental dependance makes for poor self reliance.

"What could possibly go wrong with a duct tape boat?"  Cody Lundin

The best defense against evil men are good men with violent skill sets.
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#3
Depends on the fan. For instance, the camping tent fan that I bought from walmart (which I think is a 10") says it draws 700ma.

A GOOD brand D cell battery holds around 12 amp hours .

so, in this case, about 14 hours (12 / 0.7) = 14

If you were going to go the rechargeable route, then I'd remove the 8 D cell holder and put in a 12v 14AH lead acid battery and put a 20W 12v solar panel on it, instead of messing with D cells

In my testing, you get 2.5 cell phone charges out of 1 set of batteries. So, it's really sort of a 1-2 day emergency thing, recharge a phone, run a light, run a small fan.

If you're trying to really plan for a LONG term emergency (say a week), then you're going to burn through a lot of D cells. Which, you COULD do, or, the smart thing to do would be to get a 12v, 120AH deep cycle battery from walmart for $85 and put all the connections on it. That's what I'm pushing hard for my father to do, but he's too lazy to drive to the store.


This is really a very consumer facing product, for someone that is not thinking about prepping, not planning all that well, to stick in a closet and forget about until they need it. I've already got ideas for bigger, rechargeable packs, but that market seems to be flooded. While I can do it 'better' than anything else out there, I don't think that I can get the price to a point where the normal consumer would be willing to pay for it.


https://powerwerx.com/pwrbox-portable-po...-batteries

https://powerwerx.com/bioenno-bpp-m400-power-pack
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#4
Neat idea.
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#5
Like it for convenience... for small items it would be good.

For longer uses as mentioned, a larger battery and solar could be the way to go. (just not as portable).
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#6
I find the use of D batteries interesting but I think it might get lost among all the rechargeable battery packs that are out there.
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#7
I agree Mac, It's going to require some selling on my end, trying to make people understand the technical benefits. I got an email back today from a vendor on Amazon talking about their pack and it's a real rip off if you look at from a deeply technical perspective. Their marketing it's quite a lie, but they are certainly not being forthcoming with total information
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#8
(05-21-2018, 10:26 PM)ric0123 Wrote: I agree Mac,  It's going to require some selling on my end, trying to make people understand the technical benefits.  I got an email back today from a vendor on Amazon talking about their pack and it's a real rip off if you look at from a deeply technical perspective. Their marketing it's quite a lie, but they  are certainly not being forthcoming with total information

So the benefit of your unit is that it uses commonly available, replaceable D batteries that can be stored for a long period of time (I assume) without losing their charge.
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#9
That is the primary benefit, yes. That its refillable at any time, with batteries that typically have a long shelf life.

Secondary benefit is a true 12v, 12 amp hour output. The lithum packs on amazon are 3.7v with a step up to make 12v (or, actually 11.1v)

this is where the advertising gets really tricky. The pack I'm looking at claims to be 42,000ma.. but that's at 3.7v. So, it's REALLY only around 10amp hours at 12v after you factor in the conversion losses.

Third benefit is the built in light. Minor detail, but it's one less thing to have to stock pile or supply batteries too.

Also, i have a cigarette outlet on mine. Other units have a 12v output, but it's a tiny output and you have to use an adapter cable to get a cigarette socket. Point of that is to charge ham radios or power vehicle fans.

So, my design is a: smarter and b: has more power technically speaking and c: refillable as opposed to rechargeable.
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#10
i just use a li-ion power pack to run usb powered dimmale lights
specifically

https://www.banggood.com/5W-USB-LED-Ligh...94945.html

and

https://www.banggood.com/35CM-52CM-5W-8W...59491.html

been using several of both for over a year while camping/fishing, not water proof so some care needs to be taken.

I have a bunch of these usb fans, claimed current draw is 450mah the few i tested where all about that + - 15mah.

https://www.banggood.com/Portable-Mini-U...86610.html

I have several Anker PowerCore 20100 which has become my goto powerbank due to offers on amazon, tested with a dimming led lamp with the draw set to 1 amp they all lasted 19+ hours. I normaly use and anker 45 watt usb charger on my window sill to recharge the power cores.

If I had to go ni-mh i would use LSD AA cells, in series and parallel to get the mah and volts required
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