About 8 years ago, I organised one of the Welsh XC Rounds near to Brecon. After the race, while walking the course to retrieve the race signage, I found a short piece of carbon bar with a partially mangled bar-end attached to it, presumably where some unfortunate racer had collided with a tree. In much you same way as you find odd shoes around the countryside, you’d think one bar-end wouldn’t be useful to anyone, but I picked it up anyway and took it home where it lay in the bottom of my “bits and pieces” box ever since.
Back to the present day, I’ve been thinking for a while about how to charge electronic devices while on long bikepacking trips. Having acquired both a dynamo hub and an Exposure Revo, I’ve been happily enjoying not having to charge my light batteries all winter. But, during the day when you don’t necessarily need your lights off road, you could be putting all the energy generated by your hub into something else, like a buffer battery or, via a Cycle2Charge, direct into a GPS/Spot/Phone.
Inspired by a switch arrangement that I saw on Bear Bones Bikepacking, I thought I’d like to make myself one. I contacted Drew and asked where he got some of his components from and while hunting for on-off-on switches, managed to find a switch with a diameter of approximately 20 mm. Now all I needed was to find something with an internal diameter of 20 mm:
The bar-end needed two exit slots; one for the cable that would go to the Revo and the other for the cable that would go to my Cycle2Charge:
On the opposite side, I drilled a 9 mm hole that would take a female connector, into which the feed from the hub would be plugged:
The female connector was assembled and a short piece of platypus hose cut, into which the connector would later be inserted to insulate it against the bar-end:
The finished wiring arrangement, following a bit of guidance from Drew (thanks buddy!), as electronics wasn’t really my strong point at school:
All that was left was to shoe-horn this little arrangement into my bar-end. The short piece of hose fitted into the 9 mm hole very snugly, and with a bit of warming with a hair drier, the female connector could be pushed in fairly easily. When cool, everything is held in place firmly:
And here it is fitted to the bike:
Switching between the Revo and my Cycle2Charge (which will reside very happily in my Wildcat Gear Tom Cat, along with the devices being charged), is as easy as flicking a switch:
Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment 🙂
I’ve had a switched Kemo 5v supply for some time, it’s handy having the option to switch between Revo and USBto hand. Comes in v usefully as a dip switch on the road too, as plenty of standlight is available. Neat use of an old bar end there.
Cheers – I noted the potential as a dip switch when testing last night. Handy to be able to effectively switch off two of the LED’s when the light is fully lit.
Great work Ian! I’ve been contemplating an Exposure Revo light and hub recently for my Genesis. The charging of additional devices or battery packs being something I’m keen to also have for next winter. This looks like the perfect set up to me. I’m sure I’ve got an old bar end knocking around somewhere…
Cheers Ben. If you need any pointers, just let me know 🙂
Ian, great work.
I’m looking to do something similar for convenience and as my C2C seems to draw a charge even when not in use. It’s been changed but it still happens. Hopefully by switching it off it it won’t happen. Have you changed the cable for the C2C as it looks larger than standard?
Thanks Andy. I’ve not made the cable up for the C2C yet, but the was planning on using a short section of the supplied cable and soldering to a male connector, then plugged into the female socket that goes back to my switch. I’ll update the post once I’ve done it.
Thanks Ian. Hopefully it will sort the C2C drawing a charge when not in use.
Ian , Where did you source connectors that will accept the USE jacks ? I’ve been having issues finding them. Arguably i could use A.N.Other pair of connectors but i was hoping to keep them the same in times of failure of XY or Z that i could plug the feed straight into the light again. Cheers
I picked mine up on eBay. Search for 4mm by 1.7mm DC female jack connectors
Cheers , will get on it thanks for some reason i thought they were 5.5 and was getting no where.