Need custom cable for portable power pack for ham radio and other mobile devices


#1

Last year at one of Canadian Tire’s regular sales I picked up one of the battery packs for jump-starting cars, running small electronics etc.


Soon thereafter I contacted Noco support about changing the pack using my 30w folding solar panel, based on the voltage output of my folding and 40w stationary panels being too high, they indicated I’d need a regulator to keep charging voltage no higher than 15v, so I had Polar Batteries order this unit which the chat rep recommended

It arrived yesterday and to my dismay, it won’t work as it has different connectors, back on chat and find out their regulators will only work with their panels and they have “proprietary” connectors so too bad so sad. After poking around on the Noco site, I find the following items which should allow me to plugin the female cigarette lighter adaptor from my folding panel

CDN Tire has something similar in stock

http://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/noco-genius-12v-outlet-charging-lead-0111931p.html#srp

At this point the chat rep says, it’s not a supported configuration, but should work. I then realize I need 1 more cable, a male to male connector to go from the output on the regulator to the charging port on the GB70. They don’t make such a thing, all their cables are male to female only. So that means I need to find appropriate connectors to make up a custom cable to come from the regulator to the battery pack. Below you’ll see a photo showing the charging port on the GB70 along with the male/female ends of the current cable I have. I prefer not to butcher this one, but instead make up a new cable. Anyone recognize the type of connector and can suggest where to locally or online get pre-made cables or the connectors so I can make my own?

My goal is to have this cable made up so I can play with it and test charging and such at the VECTOR Field Day exercise next weekend.


#2

Why not cut out both ends and replace them with a connector set? There are nice connectors around VHS. I think there was also a donation recently from a company that shutdown, the donation included very high quality, water-proof connectors. I’ll be at VHS this afternoon around ~4pm if you need some help.


#3

Unless the connector sets at VHS match the ones the one on the regulator and battery pack end, I’m not sure how cutting and replacing would help me? I still want the flexibility to use other Noco accessories as/when needed so my preference would be the custom cable route…

I guess my next question would be whether a charge controller would give me the same result as a regulator? I have several of them for my Coleman 40W panels, but don’t have one for the Powerfilm 30w folding panel. But I could get one

http://www.powerfilmsolar.com/products/products/?ra9__charge_controller&show=product&productID=271563&productCategoryIDs=6574

Big advantage if the charge controller can take the place of the regulator, then once I get the one the PowerFilm I am good to go as then it’ll be

Panel > charge controller >female cigarette lighter adapor > male cigarette lighter adaptor > cable to charge port on the GB70.

Notwithstanding the above, I’d like to know more about your suggestion, as I noted, I am not sure how that helps me…


#4

Yeah, I guess if you want to be able to keep using their accessories with difficult to find connectors … But having a closer look at the photo, it appears to be similar to recent HP laptop charger connectors … maybe take it to Lee’s and try out one of their car laptop power adapters that comes with a variety of plugs? then you would know which plug you can use.


#5

Taking the gear to Lee’s is a good idea, I was also thinking of running over to RP too. In either case I might still swing by the space later to pick your brains on your suggestions.

The main problem with butchering the current cable is it’s used for both charging the pack and for charging external devices from the pack. Basically you use the female plug on the pack to charge it and the male plug to charge external items.


#6

Lee’s had the correct connectors with pigtails. I’m good to go.

Harondel J. Sibble
Sibble Computer Consulting
Harondel@pdscc.com
604-739-3709


#7

Actually while the connectors do fit into the noco jacks, they are just a
smidge too big and I need to shave off say 1/8 to 1/4 mm all the way around
the outside diameter, what suggestions do folks have on how to do that?

I can plug them in and out now but it takes significant force and I’m
concerned that’s going to cause damage over time.