Standalone PB Battery Charger??

Posted by: The Mouse

Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/03/05 11:45 PM

Hi Modders,

Having a second battery for your PowerBook is really cool... What would be ever more mondo is having a standalone battery charger, such that one battery is chargin', whilst the other is in use....Have looked hi and lo for this, to no avail, so now am ready to mod one of my own.....

Anyone with any tips on this? Can it be as simple as taking an old AC adaptor and fitting it with the proper +/- connectors & making some type of cradle?....

Thanks much for your inputs....

The Mouse...
Posted by: krusher117

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 12:43 AM

This guy designed one for his robot and it looks like you can get all the info you need here
http://www.seattlerobotics.org/encoder/200210/lithiumion.htm

Posted by: oojacoboo

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 02:27 AM

That is a really great idea. A cradle for a laptop battery. I know that apple sells a number of extra batteries to customers. I have never seen someone that had one so I am really unsure how they charge them. I am guessing that people just put them onto the laptop and charge them, then switch and do the same. This does seem tedious and very inconvenient. Especially if you are using one of them at the time.

If you really got that mod off of the ground, I am betting that you could sell the idea to an accessory manufacturer. Maybe Griffin Tech, or Dr. Bott... Or better yet, start selling them yourselves. I am sure there is a market for them.
Posted by: mark

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 03:23 AM

Those companies used to sell external battery chargers (Dr.Bott's side bar still has a battery charger category but there's nothing in it) but there's almost no market for them. Look online for wallstreet battery chargers, they almost have to give them away to get rid of the stock. Since the G3 Powerbooks I think there's only been one external battery charger since then and that's at MCE and only for iBooks. Couple of those on eBay but other than that its all older battery chargers

Battery life is far better now, so there's less of a need for more than one battery. One top of that do you want to pay $250+ to get a second battery and a battery cradle or $70 to get a car adapter and a spare AC adapter - that in the end will be smaller and lighter?
Posted by: oojacoboo

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 04:01 AM

thats a good point mark. That is the reason that I have never had a second battery. However, I think that there is a niche market still out there for it. I am not talking about powerbook g3 cradles though. I am talking about more recent computer's batteries; cradles for them.
Posted by: krusher117

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 05:12 AM

to save yourself some hassle of actually tracking down parts and assembling, just buy this

http://www.welovemacs.com/vstch50forpo.html

remove the casing and rewire the connectors so that it is compatible with your G4 battery. That way you get the overcharge protection and battery error monitor.
Posted by: whitlock

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 06:00 AM

The $64,000 question is what kind of PowerBook battery are we talking about.

The reason I ask is because 5300 batteries are NiCad, whereas newer batteries (I.E. iBooks / 233mhz PB's +) are Lithium Ion. If you just find any charger and wire it to have the same points, there could be some issues with over/undercharging the battery because of current control and regulation. If you have a newer PB you may need to wire one youself, but if it's an older one nearer to the G3 PB reign, you maybe able to make a couple changes since it's should be in about the same family.
Posted by: krusher117

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 06:08 AM

good point whitlock. that would mean that the charger i linked to was a nicad charger and may harm your battery. So I guess back to the robot battery
Posted by: The Mouse

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? - 01/04/05 03:29 PM

Yo Modders,

Thanks for your comments. Very very helpful.

Quick comment on the convenience/ergonomics issue. When both you and your wife have PowerBooks, and both have two batteries each, it get's quite messy working with power adaptors and such to keep all four batteries at the ready.... I'm *really really* in need of a standalone charger, so to keep *luv, peace and harmony* within the family unit.......

I'm investigating the robot charger that Krusher mentioned, but would prefer a somewhat simpler "analog" circuit rather than uC-controlled..... If anyone has any inputs / tips at all, my family unit would be very grateful...

Thanks, thanks..

The Mouse
Posted by: The Mouse

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? Score!!!! - 01/04/05 03:40 PM

Yo Modders,

Woah!...Thanks to y'all, I think my problem is solved, and the family unit can continue in blissful co-existence......

After following some links from your helpful comments, I came across this one, pre-assembled, and seems like it'll fit the bill:

http://www.thomas-distributing.com/mh-c777plus.htm

I'm gonna order it up, and I'll post my results.....

Thanks, thanks, thanks....

The Mouse
Posted by: krusher117

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? Score!!!! - 01/04/05 04:13 PM

wow that is awesome.....its always nice when there is an easy answer B)
Posted by: whitlock

Re:Standalone PB Battery Charger?? Score!!!! - 01/04/05 04:38 PM

Nice. I'm glad you found a universal charger for that. It's a good find. Tell us how it works when you get the chance.