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DIY Solar Charging Handbag

Submitted By: 

Shalini Verma

Charging your gadgets now and then because of drained battery especially when you are not at home or office, is a problem faced by almost all of us. To solve this problem, Adafruit has come out another tutorial showing how to make a solar battery charger first and then attaching it to your handbag or backpack.

This soldering project can be really helpful for your weekend plan, where you can simultaneously charge your battery under the sun and also enjoy your trip or take photos without any pressure of draining battery. For better understanding, it is suggested to read these two links- USB, DC & Solar Lipoly Charger and MintyBoost.

The equipment required for this project are USB/DC/Solar Lithium Ion/Polymer charger kit, MintyBoost kit, Altoids mints sized tin, a large solar panel or a medium solar panel, a large lithium polymer battery or a smaller one, 2.1mm DC Barrel Plug, Double sided tape, Adhesive Velcro tape and a sturdy handbag or backpack.

In this project, "ColdHeat" soldering iron is not used as it is not considered suitable for delicate electronics work and can damage the Flora. The instructions given in the Solar LiPoly Charger Guide is followed for this project but while soldering the capacitor, bend it over to make it lay down on the board first for better fitting with everything inside the enclosure.

The JST cable is soldered with the solar lipoly charger kit and the MintyBoost is plugged into the LOAD port on the solar charger along with a lithium polymer battery into the BATT port. The bottom of the mint tin is lined up with tape for insulation from the metal contacts of the circuit board. The battery is also wrapped in the tape.

When the kits are unplugged, they are placed opposite direction of short edges of the tin and mark where the ports need access. A small rectangle is snipped out from the short edges and curled with pliers. Try to "Dry fit" the unplugged kits to check whether fit in the slots or not. With the help of double sided foam tape, secure it to the inside of the mint tin.

The battery is plugged into the BATT port on the charging board and double stick tape is used to secure the battery on top of the MintyBoost. 

Check out the following link for complete details of construction.