Waterlily Turbine - Mountain Buzz

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Old 08-27-2018   #1
athelake's Avatar
Newman Lake, Washington
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Posts: 168
Waterlily Turbine

Does anyone have any experience with the Waterlily Turbine USB charger?


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Old 08-27-2018   #2
Electric-Mayhem's Avatar
Lakewood, Colorado
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I don't....but I'll tell you the same thing I tell most people looking for outdoor charging. Battery banks are by far the best thing for charging your devices in the field. You can get nice high capacity ones for about $40-60 that will be more then sufficient for your needs on the river.

The Waterlily thing looks nice enough, but its expensive and seems like it needs fairly ideal conditions to charge well. The same goes for most solar chargers as well. They take a lot of baby sitting.

For less money, you can get a couple of high capacity battery banks and be able to charge your devices wherever and whenever you want to. The other problem with the solar and turbine chargers is they provide variable levels of voltage and amperage depending on conditions and modern devices often need a certain voltage and amperage to charge. If you don't get the ideal voltage, it may not even charge the device. This isn't a problem with most battery banks(except cheap one sometimes...check the specs before you buy) since they provide the voltage and amperage that are specified by the USB standard.

I have two 26800 MAH battery banks and they were more the sufficient to charge my GoPro, Phone and Tablet for an entire 23 day grand canyon trip (I actually brought 3 of them but never needed the 3rd). For the $200 that the Waterlily costs, you can have buy a heck of a lot of battery capacity that doesn't take up much space and works when and where you need it to.
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Old 08-27-2018   #3
Boulder, Colorado
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Join Date: Apr 2017
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Seems like a Gee-Wiz product that fundamentally suffers from the inefficiency in turning momentum into energy, particularly in water. While battery banks are indeed useful in keeping your devices charged, ensuring those topped off and with adequate power to should be an equal consideration. I went with an Anker 21W solar panel to keep up with this, which for just over $40 seemed like a bargain. It's rugged, capable, and proven useful in so many outdoor situations. Of course, it also helps to buy a small battery bank for storage. So for half the cost of this $200 product could have something much more capable and adaptable...
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Old 08-27-2018   #4
Belgrade, Montana
Paddling Since: 2000
Join Date: Jun 2007
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I will second the battery bank solution. It just makes sense. They have become so affordable AND you can use them in the rest of your life. Long flight and wanna keep playing candy crush...Boom you've got the power. Tired of interacting with people at dinner but your phone is on E...zinngg you can top it up. Long road trip with that one friend that still uses a flip phone and doesn't have a single charging port in their '92 Honda Civic.

I almost always have one in my day bag and one in my van. But just make sure you get one with a minimum of 10,000mah. The bigger the better obviously. The newer ones even have USB-C with high capacity charge capability.
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Old 08-27-2018   #5
Dipshit with the most.
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Bellevue, Idaho
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Looking to add another battery. Looking for a recommend on this. I love the one I have and tried to reorder and got discoed.
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Old 08-27-2018   #6
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Lakewood, Colorado
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I had (until a doucebag broke into my truck and stole them) several of the RAVPower 26800 mah battery banks and was very happy with them. Just one is enough to charge a GoPro about 20 times or a phone about 10 times. There are cheaper ones out there, but its a nice reliable one with three USB ports. Only thing I don't like is it takes a while to charge, but that is normal for high capacity ones. If you feel like that is too big they and Anker make some nice 10-20,000 mah versions.

Some go for the Goal Zero stuff, but IMHO they are too expensive and the stuff I've gotten from them aren't as bomb proof as their cheaper but less advertised versions. I bought their solar panel and was gifted a battery bank and for my use neither has been all that great (your mileage may vary). I mostly use the Battery Bank for its LED flashlight in my tent....pretty bright. Not so great as a battery bank though.
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Old 08-27-2018   #7
Los Anchorage, Alaska
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 33
A family member gave me the Enomad (https://www.energynomad.com/) to try. I took it on a recent trip on the Yukon river and tried it a couple nights. The Yukon was flowing 200,000 cfs and about 7mph out in the middle - but I was never able to get out deep enough in the current to get it to work properly. Tried it a few nights and gave up. If you were able to set it out in the current it might work - but it was too gimmicky for me. As others have suggested the battery banks work better. I carry a 10,050 mAh capacity battery and it's enough to charge my gps and camera several times.
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Old 09-02-2018   #8
dillon, Colorado
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We had an enomad that never worked also...it was a gift as well...go figure.
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Old 09-02-2018   #9
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Nampa, Idaho
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I agree. Batteries are simple. I have a different take. Why not use a battery you already have.

I have a couple of Milwaukee 18v 700 lumen lanterns I take camping. They have a USB port on the back. I charge my devices with them. The lantern is bright, has several brightness modes, and can shine 360 or 180 degree throws.

I have two 18v 9000 mAh batteries, one for each light. Dual purpose. They work with my Milwaukee blower for blowing up boats and thermarests and the drill I use to beat eggs in our camp kit. On a 5 day trip down Hells, I might go down to 3 out of 4 bars on the battery. I think you could get through most trips with one battery.

I already had the batteries since I use Milwaukee tools. All I had to do was buy the bare tool lanterns from Home Depot.
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Old 09-03-2018   #10
Walterville, Oregon
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Originally Posted by Dr.AndyDVM View Post
I agree. Batteries are simple. I have a different take. Why not use a battery you already have.
Great idea! I have Bosch and DeWalt batteries. I sometimes take a DeWalt drill for repairs. I had no idea they made stand alone USB adapters for about $30. - Bosch - DeWalt
I'm not happy about being over the hill, but I am grateful there wasn't a cliff at the summit! - Frank and Ernest
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