Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

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Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby nickpaton » Fri Jul 25, 2014 6:00 pm

I have a Tablet, Smartphone and AA batteries from my Garmin Etrex Vista Hcx, which are charged when not cycling during a trip with a couple of Anker 10000mAh Cache batteries.

Each Anker cache battery is charged whilst cycling with a conventional Son28 dynamo and B&M E-Werk Regulator set up.

Unfortunately I managed to break the extremely fragile micro USB charging connector on one of the Ankers. It wasn't unexpected as these USB connectors are far too fragile for the rough and tumble of the touring environment.

Rather than throwing the Anker away I cut away the case and soldered one end of a short cable to the Anker circuit board, with an audio 3 pin XLR connector on the other. This mates to another XLR connector soldered onto one of the bare end coaxial leads that come with the E-Werk.
batt_lead1.jpg
batt_lead1.jpg (82.38 KiB) Viewed 1293 times


The whole charging lead path is now far more robust, with no danger of ultra fragile micro USB connectors falling out en route / breaking etc.
bike_fit1.jpg
bike_fit1.jpg (109.93 KiB) Viewed 1293 times

If you're interested, the handlebar bag in the photo above is an old canvas military RAF tool bag sewn onto a Kraus and Rixen handlebar frame. Works fine and is waterproof too.

!WARNING! Anker and other similar batteries contain Li-Ion batteries which will ignite if damaged or cut!
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby RickH » Fri Jul 25, 2014 6:42 pm

A pre-emptive measure for others might be a USB cable with a right angle mini/micro connector (such as this)

Image

So there isn't so much cable sticking out to lever on the connector.

Rick.
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby nickpaton » Fri Jul 25, 2014 6:53 pm

I did consider one of these, but the connector would still keep falling out and I suspect the micro USB socket in the device eventually fail.
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby Aushiker » Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:07 am

Timely post as I was considering the purchase of a Anker Astro E5 15000mAh External Battery which also uses a Micro USB as its charging point. I guess it will suffer the same issue as you have reported.

Image

I notice Anker also sell the Anker 2nd Gen Astro Pro 15000mAh Triple-Port External Battery with PowerIQ™ Technology which requires a 12V / 2A charge source. With the necessary wiring the eWerk could handle this but then then it would also require taking an additional wall plug for charging in town.

Image

Regards
Andrew
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby Aushiker » Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:08 am

nickpaton wrote:I did consider one of these, but the connector would still keep falling out and I suspect the micro USB socket in the device eventually fail.


Could a rubber band or similar be used with the right angle connector to hold it in place?

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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby Aushiker » Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:17 am

RickH wrote:A pre-emptive measure for others might be a USB cable with a right angle mini/micro connector (such as this ... So there isn't so much cable sticking out to lever on the connector.


Just found these. I wonder if one of this was secured to the side it would do the trick?

Image

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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby nickpaton » Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:40 pm

Rick, Andrew, the problem with any right angle micro/mini USB connector is that unless the body sits firmly against the side of the battery pack, the battery USB socket is likely to fail due to strain from the lead.
However, Andrew those adapters look like they could fit like this, so long as they are held in place with an elastic band. But again you'll need to come up with a way of keeping the full size USB lead in too without over straining that connector! One idea might be to glue the large USB lead into the adapter, with a bit of packing between it and the battery body.

Re the higher capacity E5, I deliberately didn't chose it as there are reports that the built in flash light switch is easily knocked on in transit. In any case I've found the smaller capacity Anker without the light is more than sufficient capacity, especially if you have a couple.

Not sure about the 2nd gen device. First, charging via the E-Werk will take a very long time as the higher the set voltage the lower the current output.
These aren't accurate figures, but most hub dynamos output 3W / 0.5A 6V AC maximum. When converting it to 5V DC, the maximum current will be again roughly 0.5A (assuming no conversion losses, which there are).
With the E-Werk voltage set to 12V DC, the output current will drop by a corresponding amount, ie to less than 0.2A. The E-Werk circuit doesn't somehow create charging current out of thin air, and can only work with what it's provided with from the dynamo.

I'm just back from another trip and using one of my Ankers to keep mine and a friend's phone charged for a couple of days, and have recharged it back to 100% over a day's ride.

My E-Werk settings are 4.9V and 0.7A as the dynamo won't be giving out any more current than that, so the E-Werk is set to work at its most efficient.
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby edocaster » Mon Jul 28, 2014 11:57 pm

nickpaton wrote:Not sure about the 2nd gen device. First, charging via the E-Werk will take a very long time as the higher the set voltage the lower the current output.
These aren't accurate figures, but most hub dynamos output 3W / 0.5A 6V AC maximum. When converting it to 5V DC, the maximum current will be again roughly 0.5A (assuming no conversion losses, which there are).
With the E-Werk voltage set to 12V DC, the output current will drop by a corresponding amount, ie to less than 0.2A. The E-Werk circuit doesn't somehow create charging current out of thin air, and can only work with what it's provided with from the dynamo.



Looking at http://www.forumslader.de/typo3temp/pics/590d4cd9bb.png

...my understanding is that at 20km/h the 12V and 5V settings of the E-Werk cross over at 3W, but at higher speeds, both can give more power, with the 12V setting giving over 5W at 32km/h. That would equate to 0.42A. This is because the E-Werk is presenting a load that is different from that required to clamp the dynamo at 6V.
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby Aushiker » Tue Jul 29, 2014 1:22 am

nickpaton wrote:However, Andrew those adapters look like they could fit like this, so long as they are held in place with an elastic band. But again you'll need to come up with a way of keeping the full size USB lead in too without over straining that connector! One idea might be to glue the large USB lead into the adapter, with a bit of packing between it and the battery body.


Poking around I found some other right-angle connectors which look like they would mount flush to the side of the battery better which may help.

Re the higher capacity E5, I deliberately didn't chose it as there are reports that the built in flash light switch is easily knocked on in transit. In any case I've found the smaller capacity Anker without the light is more than sufficient capacity, especially if you have a couple.


Thanks for the heads-up. I wasn't aware of that concern.

Not sure about the 2nd gen device. First, charging via the E-Werk will take a very long time as the higher the set voltage the lower the current output.
These aren't accurate figures, but most hub dynamos output 3W / 0.5A 6V AC maximum. When converting it to 5V DC, the maximum current will be again roughly 0.5A (assuming no conversion losses, which there are).


It was an early option which I have since discarded in preference for USB charging pretty much for the reasons you give plus one less power point plug to take as well.

Thanks
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby nickpaton » Sun Aug 03, 2014 8:40 pm

edocaster wrote:
Looking at http://www.forumslader.de/typo3temp/pics/590d4cd9bb.png

...my understanding is that at 20km/h the 12V and 5V settings of the E-Werk cross over at 3W, but at higher speeds, both can give more power, with the 12V setting giving over 5W at 32km/h. That would equate to 0.42A. This is because the E-Werk is presenting a load that is different from that required to clamp the dynamo at 6V.

Apologies for not replying earlier - I missed it!

You can't argue against the graphs, which make enlightening reading. I guess it's a combination of the dynamo giving out more than its rated output, and the load presented by the E-Werk.

However the E-Werk switch mode circuit will not give out more power (ie voltage x current) than that provided from the source (dynamo).
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Re: Anker Cache Battery Broken USB Connector

Postby edocaster » Sun Aug 03, 2014 11:24 pm

nickpaton wrote:
edocaster wrote:
Looking at http://www.forumslader.de/typo3temp/pics/590d4cd9bb.png

...my understanding is that at 20km/h the 12V and 5V settings of the E-Werk cross over at 3W, but at higher speeds, both can give more power, with the 12V setting giving over 5W at 32km/h. That would equate to 0.42A. This is because the E-Werk is presenting a load that is different from that required to clamp the dynamo at 6V.

Apologies for not replying earlier - I missed it!

You can't argue against the graphs, which make enlightening reading. I guess it's a combination of the dynamo giving out more than its rated output, and the load presented by the E-Werk.

However the E-Werk switch mode circuit will not give out more power (ie voltage x current) than that provided from the source (dynamo).


Yep, the '3W' rating Shimano give is very easy to exceed. The dynamo won't easily give more current than 500-600mA current, but the voltage can be far higher than 6V.
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