The charge and go battery Box
This is the box I opted to use as a battery box in the end. It was about £9, but it is not anywhere near as sturdy as the case for the go box. But then it shouldn’t have to be.
Here I quickly found a problem. All the plastic tool boxes I looked at were all basically to small or to big. To small was clearly not going to work, so it had to be bigger and the height was an issue at 7″. In the end I found a box in Wilco which was far to big really, at 20″ long, around 8″ deep and about 10″ high.
The battery is now mounted in the middle of the box for balance. This leaves me plenty of room for the external charger and any wires either end.
I decided I would approach this box in a similar but far simpler way than my go box itself. This is going to be an external source in effect a leisure battery that’s purpose in life is to charge a battery and run various radio’s and radio related devices from it. And as it has some room to spare is can hold pretty much all the leads it will require inside.
The charger LED charge and power indicators can be seen through the perspex cover over the inspection window. The charger is powered by a Kettle lead as before. but this time one with a light up ntegral switch and fusebox built in. It was £8, but saved a lot of faffing around.
I have opted for Banana plugs again and these seem fairly foolproof and makes interconnecting easy. I also decided to add a quick connection device, like the ones used on most power supplies these days and I have made up several approximately 2m connecting leads
Here you can see the mains charger on the right and the battery in the middle. The Battery is now charged via either a solar panel on the lid of the box or the charger seen on the right of this picture. The storage inside the box is quite good. Patch leads and small items can be stored in the box comfortably.
Please note the Battery is connected using Anderson Power-poles allowing a quick and reliable connection or disconnection. The Battery terminals have been covered in plastic which are Velcro and screwed in place in an effort to avoid any short circuits. The battery can be disconnected via an Anderson Power-pole connector.
The chain stops the lid opening to far as the hinge is only plastic and could be easily broken if it opens to far to often.
In the underside of the lid on the right is a switch which selects either the mains charger or the solar panel for charging.
In the middle of the underside of the lid can be seen the Shunt resistor for the Ammeter. With the Ammeter/Voltmeter above the shunt.
On the right in the lid is the output switch and fuse with the wiring ending up on the right with the banana sockets and flick connectors for 12v devices.
I had hoped to be able to keep the inner tray inside the box. but to keep the wiring safe It had to go in the end.
The Solar panel is on the right and above that is the switch that selects battery charging via solar panel or mains charger.
The Ammeter/Voltmeter is below the handle and only lights up when the switch to the left of the charge controller box is switch to output the power. The Ammeter/voltmeter seems to work properly though I am not sure how accurate the Ammeter itself is. It is accurate enough for my needs though.
On the control box the 2 green lights indicate the battery is charging and there is a load connected to the battery via the control box. The red lights give an indication of the state of battery charge.
The Banana plugs and flick connections have been rewired with the added bonus there are a few more untapped connections inside the box that are easy to connect should I ever need to. I am considering an Anderson power-pole connection in there as well
It does all work as I plugged in an old Muppet rig with a dummy load attached and it showed a definite drain of nearly 2A in transmit and .4 of an amp on receive.
Next job is to make a few modifications/improvements? to the Go Box