I’ve been running my NexStar 6SE scope in the field using an old 12V 7-Ah gel cell battery for awhile now, but it’s kinda heavy and has to sit on the ground, meaning I have to pay attention to not getting the power cord wrapped around the mount as I slew the telescope. I really wanted to find something that was light enough to attach to the arm of the mount itself but still had enough power in it to run the scope for at least an evening. Surfing some of the message boards, I found several reports of people using battery packs from TalentCell. The message board posts claimed up to several nights of observing with their battery packs. It sounded like I had found the answer.

TalentCell makes several models with varying capacities. I was looking for a combination of compact size and decent capacity. I ended up purchasing the 6-Ah version with a built-in USB port. This pack is small enough to attach to the side of the fork arm on the mount, keeping it out of the way of the tube and the hand controller and eliminating the cord wrap concerns. It still has nearly the same capacity as the old gel cell battery I was using, so I wasn’t giving much up there.

I used some hook-and-loop adhesive-backed tape to attach the pack to the mount. The battery pack isn’t heavy enough to break the hook-and-loop grip so it stays securely mounted. I personally like the Sewology brand of hook-and-loop tape that Hobby Lobby sells–it’s pretty stout stuff:

This particular battery pack is supposed to be able to deliver up to 3A of current at 12V, so I’m pretty sure it’ll run any of my QRP ham transceivers (like my KX3), as well. Seems like a versatile little pack.

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