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charging 20V laptop from 60V e-bike, using voltage reducer?

eternalnoob

Oct 25, 2022
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Oct 25, 2022
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I have an ebike with a 1.5 kwh battery, plenty for a long ride with watt-hours to spare. I have a laptop with a 20V USB-C charging port (which is fairly typical of most macbooks etc., though this is a "framework" pc). I would like to be able to ride out into the woods and do some laptop work with better scenery than my home office, but work longer than the couple hours my laptop battery lasts for. It seems pretty straight forward from a first-principles standpoint to take a dc voltage regulator / voltage reducer to provide 20V, then solder the output terminals to the correct wires of a sliced-open USB-C cord, to power my laptop. However, I'm also imagining there are some nuances I may not understand about the charging system.

I'm a handy person with a decent physics understanding but limited electronics experience. Never really soldered a circuit board. So maybe this project is over my head maybe i'm better off just buying a laptop battery-bank. Wondering if someone on here has done this before. Seems like it should be a thing that people do, with the prevalance of e-bikes swiftly on the rise. Is this a product worth developing?

I guess specifically the questions i need answered are:
1) If i slice open a USB-C cable, which lines are going to be providing the pos and neg dc power? and
2) Is there more to comprehend about how my laptop and ac-adapter are working / talking to each-other, and is this whole thing a dumb idea and am i going to fry my laptop if i try to hack this?

Thanks, curiously yours,
 

Alec_t

Jul 7, 2015
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Is there more to comprehend about how my laptop and ac-adapter are working / talking to each-other
Depends on the laptop. Some brands may have a proprietary arrangement so that they only work with a brand-specific charger.
 

bertus

Moderator
Nov 8, 2019
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Nov 8, 2019
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Hello,

As @Alec_t said, The laptop may only work with the adapter from the same brand.
USB can negotiate with the charger to provide more power.
This negotiation may also include verification of the used brand / series of the charger.

Bertus
 
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