Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Poor Mans Portable Power

Being the frugal bastard that I am, I am working on a Poor mans portable power system. I'm all about the little man....being one of them and all. hehe!! So, here's what I got. I have an old electric scooter that the kids have shoved to the side ( like just about everything else that's over 2 weeks old ) and I have took it apart to see what I can do with the parts. There are 2 - 12 volt rechargeable batteries inside wired in a series that makes them run a 24 volt electric motor on the scooter. Now stop right here, don't think even for a minute that I have any idea what the hell I just said. All I know for sure is that there are 2 - 12 volt batteries and if I can charge 'em I can use 'em. I took all the wiring off the scooter so that I could bring it inside and see if the will charge. They have been out in the weather for sometime and I'm just not sure if all is well with them. I have the charger plugged in here in the big house hoping that they will take charge, the red light is still on on the charge indicator after about 9 hours. Not looking to good, but we will see in the morning how things go. The plan is that I can take these 2 batteries down to my building, let's call it the 'Fort' just for fun, and wire them to my 140 watt inverter and then have a little 110 AC. I would like to get some 12 volt led's for lighting the Fort because they would be much more efficient than converting DC to AC and then using a compact fluorescent.

Here is one of the 12 volt batteries. It's a Fullriver brand, valve regulated rechargeable battery, HGL 10-12, 12V 10Ah/20HR. Once again I just read that off the battery so don't think I know what that means or anything. I'm thinking that it's a 12 volt battery that I can draw 10 amps per hour for 20 hours. No idea if that's even close to being right. God, I am so honest about my stupidity, but if you're ever gonna be right about anything, ya first got to know that you could be wrong. Like I said I hope to be able to charge these in the house for now and use at the Fort later. Could use it anywhere you need DC or AC power if you have a good enough inverter I guess, my 140 watt is not gonna be much help though.

Well I'll be damned, here's another one. Just remembered I had it. WooooHoooo!!!! I know this is a good one, came out of a electric 4 wheeler that is just sitting outside now. Man these kids have got everything. Well now I have 3, count 'em, 3 rechargeable 12 volt batteries. Now just got to get me some of them there solar panels, for free or less. haha!! I got a little something in mind that may work though, I'll let ya know when I know.

This is Bullseye.....Out!!!


Bustednuckles said...

Do ya still have the charger for the scooter?
I would be real interested to know if it is a twelve or twenty four volt charger.

I am thinking that you have two twelve volt batteries that were wired parallel.
That would give them a longer life per charge, where as two twelves wired in series gives you twenty four volts for maximum power.

Ya ever seen what they call a scissor lift at a construction site?
A mobile platform that goes up and down?
They use a twenty four volt system and I used to fix the damn things.
There is a huge difference.
Batteries wired positive to positive are parallel.
Wired positive to negative is a whole different animal and can be dangerous as hell to mess with.

Bullseye said...

Bustednuckles, I do still have the charger and I am using it now. It is a 24 volt charger. Input 100-120V 60Hz 70VA: Output 24 - 1.2/2A. I think they are charging, the charge indicator light is orange now. The batteries are wired positive to negative, that's the way they were in the scooter. I think after they charge I can wire them parallel along with the other battery I have for a total of 3 12volts wired parallel. I would rather have a 12 volt system that has a longer life. Thanks and I need all the help and comments I can get.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bullseye - close on the 10AH/20HR description. The 10AH is the capacity, the 20HR is a common rate that batteries are tested at to determine their capacity.

Your batt from 100% charge will supply .5 amps for 20 hrs (down to 0%). .5A X 20hr=10ah.

The AH numbers change at different rates (hours) of draw, the slower you draw it the longer it will last. So, if you're comparing batts make sure the hour rate is the same, or the comparison isn't really valid. Some batt manufacturers use a higher hour rate to make their batts look better. Hope that helps. Take care

Bullseye said...

tootrack, that dose help. I am glad you know what you are talking ablut. I may have more questions, many more. Thanks for the comment, they all help.

Anonymous said...

"Now stop right here, don't think even for a minute that I have any idea what the hell I just said." Too funny!

All I can say is this is interesting! I'll be learning some new things as well. Hopefully, if not you then bustednuckles can teach us more of this crazy thing called electricity.

Bullseye said...

Greenville Road, what can I say, I'm just not too sure how all this works but I will learn. Bustednuckles and tootrack are 2 of the many that we can learn from. Nice to have folks out there that are willing to share info with us all. My hats off to 'em.

BTW, been trying to leave a comment over at your place and just can't seem to figure that one out either. lol...maybe I am just dumb as a rock.