jump to example.com

The Minty Boost from Adafruit is a simple charger circuit that fits in an Altoids gum tin along with two AA batteries, and will charge almost anything (e.g., MP3 player, cell phone, camera…) that charges via a USB port. You could go the solar charger route for your cell phone, but the latest one of those is around $90, and only works with certain phones. Or you can get a rechargeable power pack from Energizer® (Energi To Go®) or Duracell® (PowerSource Mini), but these seem to run in the $40-$90 range. The Minty Boost is less expensive, and you get to build it! A kit (you will also need an Altoids gum tin) is available for $20.

On the other hand, I don’t think I’d want to try explaining this to the TSA people at the airport.

Minty Boost [Corporate Site]
Solar Charger [Powcell]

 

8 Responses to It’s Just Cool: Minty Boost USB Charger

  1. Aaron says:

    I have two of these, a 1.1 and a 1.3 version. I can’t tell you how many times its gone through the airport and I’ve never had a problem. It always goes in my carry on with my ipod. I think it’s pretty obvious to the TSA guys what it is.

    I have heard reports of other users of the MintyBoost having to prove what it is (by showing that it charges the ipod), but nothing has ever happened to me like that.

    Awesome product. Building it makes you love it even more.

  2. Stitch says:

    It took me about 10 minutes to explain it to the TSA one time, and I’ve had no issues since.

  3. Jude says:

    Guess you never know although they’re supposed to check “improvised electronic devices”. Only thing keeping me from taking on a large sealed acid battery wired up with a car outlet for coast to coast trips!

  4. Jay says:

    Same with me. I’ve never even been questioned about mine.

  5. Dan Lyke says:

    Just built two of these, one in the Minty box, one integrated into another device I was building. Have already used them a bunch. Great little form-factor, great little device.

  6. Will says:

    To anyone that wants to make one, that is cool, but you can also just buy one and avoid the TSA questions. I got mine from Walmart ages ago for $10. For $20 , you could pick up one that doubles as a flashlight.

  7. Bill Schuller says:

    Like the other commentators, I’ve never been hassled by the TSA. I have several, including one that has been taken out of it’s case and modified to be used as a USB 2.0 power injector for Nokia 770 tablet in order to force it into USB host mode. It raised the only eyebrow, that of a stewardess who did a good job feigning genuine interest in what was hanging off my device. However, bringing a CPAP, a common medical device which I use to breath at night is somehow a one-way ticket to body cavity search…

  8. jeff says:

    I’ve been thinking about building this version of the minty soon. It would be quite useful. A crank charger would be sweet but I imagine I would be cranking for sometime.

    http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-make-a-solar-iPodiPhone-charger-aka-Might/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *