Home made Power Box

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Davis Schmidt's picture
Davis Schmidt
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LEGEND
Joined: 12/8/08
Home made Power Box

Have any of you constructed your own power box for ice fishing electronics?  I made one last week to power one of my trail cameras, I also used a couple of 1/4" bolts as posts out the side to power any 12v electronics with alligator clips.  Just curious to know from those of you who've done it, what other connections or ports you have put on them.  Mine will be dual use, through the fall to power a trail camera and then on the ice for my electronics so I had to seal it up real well to keep the rain out.  I have it sitting out in the field right now connected to a camera seeing if my batteries are going to freeze yet.

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Rob1334
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Joined: 10/28/13

I built one out of a case I got from Sams club last year. I used 4 9aH batteries in series to have a huge amount of battery haha.

I used a fuse box and ran each accessory off of that, I was worried about shorts and overbuilt in the protection for the unit considering it would see the elements.

Everything is wired on switches on the front so I can turn everything on or off.

Built in USB ports for charging stuff, a 12v cigarette plug style connector for automotive 12v charge units. I have a digital display that shows the battery charge, LED lights on the sides to add light inside tents or in the ice house. Also added terminals on the top for alligator clips. Inside is plenty of room for all my charge cables, a rechargeable aerator, and a couple other small electronic items.

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Rob1334
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Davis Schmidt's picture
Davis Schmidt
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I like that box far better than the ammo box I used. I avoided putting things on the top of my box because I didn't want to have to disconnect wiring or add a bunch of extra wiring just so I could open the lid, all of my connections go out the sides of the box. The other reason I used the sides of the box is because mine will sit out in the rain and i'd rather have water run over the holes than sitting on top of them, even though they have been heavily siliconed I just wanted to avoid any potential for leaks.

Don't practice until you get it right, practice until you can't get it wrong.

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Rob1334
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I have another power source on the front of the box by the handle also, but everything I did has automotive style switches or silicone on it, it's still pretty waterproof from the top, but I can just turn the box if I want to have the power at a different angle.

Only reason I would have to open the box is to grab a charge cable, otherwise it's all available.

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Davis Schmidt
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Rob, how often do you have to charge those batteries, if you're running several devices on it will it last an entire weekend, or longer?

I figured out the amperage draw of my trail camera at idle, and when it takes a picture and the amperage is so tiny my 2 9ah batteries should be able to last somewhere around a year in ideal conditions snapping photos constantly, it's kinda hard to account for the cold though.

Don't practice until you get it right, practice until you can't get it wrong.

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Schleicher
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Love the idea and design you've put together here.  would you post a pic of the inside?

thanks for sharing!

Running portable flip house and Vexilar fl-12.

Thanks,
Schleicher

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Davis Schmidt
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Here you go.  Out the left hand side towards the front is a 3-way toggle the forward position sends power to the battery posts to charge the batteries or to power electronics with alligator clips.  The middle position of the switch is off, and the rear position of the switch sends power to a 12v cord which powers my trail camera or my aqua-vu.  I did not have any fuses installed in this photo, since this photo was taken I installed an inline fuse to the posts, and one to the 12v cord.

Don't practice until you get it right, practice until you can't get it wrong.

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Rob1334
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I actually built mine in January last year, it lasted the rest of the season haha and that includes putting stuff on it in the garage for convenience. Those batteries hold a lot of juice, and four of them runnning LED setups, a couple phones to charge on, a couple smaller lithium batteries... I suppose if I ran my vexilar off of it, I will this year at some point as well as a marcum camera, my goal was to overbuild it that it would last at least a three day stretch..

 

I will try and remember tonight to take a pic inside, trying to get hunting stuff together last minute to head out Fri. AM... the other nice thing is the inside is foam insert, so it holds all the batteries in place as well as insulates them from sitting on the ice.