Tutorial: How to Turn a Toolbox into a Portable Battery Charging Station

Nothing's worse than running out of juice while on a shoot.

Shooting a film requires creativity, patience, and fully charged batteries. Managing all of those little power supplies can be a huge headache, especially if you're going from one location to another, but the folks over at Fangs Film Gear have come up with a nifty way to not only keep all of your batteries charged, but to also keep it all organized. Check out the tutorial below to learn how to build the "batt-cave", a portable and inexpensive DIY battery charging station made out of an everyday tool box.

Here are the materials you're going to need:

  • Tool box
  • (2) Power strips
  • Drill with 1/4" bit
  • (4) 8" zip ties
  • 2-Plug extension cord
  • Battery chargers

Even if you don't really know your way around a power drill, this DIY project is super simple. The holes are only there to thread the zip ties through, so even if you don't have a drill on-hand you could potentially get away with (maybe) using velcro strips or—nothing—just toss your stuff inside the tool box and call it good messy, but doable.

Since I absolutely loathe loose wires and cables, I'm thinking you could cut some extra slits into the top of the tool box lid and slip some velcro cinch straps through to wrangle any loosey gooseys. (I like velcro more than zip ties because I have commitment issues.)

Do you have a DIY battery charging station? What do you use? Let us know in the comments section!     

Your Comment

3 Comments

Slightly better version here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gy5kDukQkZA

September 7, 2016 at 4:35PM

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Kerrin McLean
Director / DP / Editor
267

Watched the video . . . totally not what I thought it would be.

The problem? Needing to charge camera and light - LiPo batteries - in the field.
Our solution? We used a heavy duty model airplane field box - it's called a ProTote.
How? By installing an automobile battery inside to power 12V chargers.
Result? We're mobile and completely independent of AC current.

Moreover, the ProTote is sturdy and designed for heavy loads. It goes together with just a screwdriver. And it packs a fat handle making it easy on your hand. Anyway, here's a link: http://www.audacitymodels.com/Products/PDR0050/Default.aspx

September 8, 2016 at 11:32AM

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Care to email me an equipment list and pics of your build? I'm looking for a portable solution to plug up my lights in the field teryfilms@gmail.com

September 10, 2016 at 11:14AM

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Tery Wilson
Filmmaker
94