Chances are you’ve heard of a hand crank flashlight, but what about a hand crank phone charger? It may sound too good to be true, but there really are devices that can transform your sweat into sweet smartphone juice. As long as you can handle a bit of strain, these battery chargers will keep your phone humming even in remotest areas.
Although a hand crank phone charger might not be as convenient as an external power bank, it’s certainly more reliable. Heck, having a hand crank phone charger on standby is even more dependable than a solar-powered charger. As long as you can turn the crank for a few minutes, you’re guaranteed an unlimited source of power.
Obviously, these manual chargers are best suited for folks who like to do a lot of camping and outdoor expeditions. There are, however, dozens of other scenarios where a crank phone charger could serve you well. For instance, people who travel to less developed areas or regions prone to severe weather could get a lot of mileage out of a hand crank cell phone charger.
To help on your quest for the best hand crank generator, we’ve compiled this list of highly reviewed phone chargers now on the market. Whether you’re traveling through deserts, rainforests, or snowy mountains, packing one of these handy crank chargers will ensure you can make that emergency phone call.
Why Is a Hand Crank Charger Useful?
A hand crank phone charge has its place for anyone travelling in the wilderness. While carrying a powerbank might be wise, what happens when it runs out? If you are heading out past the edge of civilisation, you might consider investing in a hand crank phone charger.
However, as you are literally trading your calories for electricity. they also require a bit of muscle power to get a decent charge, and so are not to be relied on for day-to-day charging, unless you live in a wilderness cabin.But when your phone dies, these can be give you just enough juice to make an important call.
This could be the difference between being able to make an emergency phone call, or not…. and is not reliant on the weather or time of day like solar chargers. This makes them useful for camping tips, hiking expeditions, and emergency situations like power outages.
The K-tor Power Socket
K-Tor are run by a specialist company that produce human-powered generators, and the pocket socket 2 is one of their two main products. It is good for charging smaller electronics like phones and tablets etc. According to the maker one minute of cranking is equal to one minute of talk time, it can be draining to crank for longer – but useful for a quick boost
For those looking for a simple hand powered battery charger, look no further than the K-Tor Power Socket. As the name suggests, this product is simply a two-prong power socket with a crank—nothing more, nothing less.
Since this product was designed solely for charging, designers took the care to make their crank’s knob very comfortable and easy to push for a long time. The company also claims this device can give users a total of 10 Watts of power. As long as you can plug a device into the K-Tor’s electrical sockets, you can charge it with crank power.
The dimensions on the K-Tor Power Socket are 6.8” x 2.2” x 2.5”. Just expect to add about 14 ounces to your luggage carrying the K-Tor around with you. Because the K-Tor is a bit on the heavier side, it might be the best cell phone charger for camping on our list.
By the way, this product is sold with a standard American outlet. The company says, however, you could purchase an international converter for an additional fee.
It is also well-built, durable, and very portable, so can be chucked in a backpack and forgotten about until needed. However it is a little bit weighty, and you will expend alot of energy if you use it for more than just a quick top-up! You are literally trading your calories for electricity!
Epica Emergency Charger
This interesting device incorporates a crank and a solar panel charger with a flashlight and FM radio. Although the solar panel isn’t up to much, the device is Amazon top-rated for it’s rugged build, multifunctionality, and decent charging ability.
For the Camping Trip: K-tor Power Box
Not one for the backpack, but ideal for a camping trip. The K-tor Powerbox is a pedal generator; letting you generate electricity by turning the pedals as if on an exercise bike, which does require alot of physical effort.
It may be a bit noisy, but the output is suitable for tablets and netbooks etc, with multiple outputs to charge several devices simultaneously. This could be useful if you experience frequent power outages or just as part of your emergency kit.
FosPower Crank Powered Charger
Minnesota-based company FosPower now offers an extremely popular hand crank phone charger online. Actually, it’s not accurate for us to classify FosPower’s product as solely a hand crank phone charger. This device has three convenient charging methods customers could take advantage of: the standard crank, solar panels, and a 2000mAh power bank.
On top of all these charging options, FosPower’s product has many significant survival features including an AM/FM radio, 2 LED lights, and an SOS signal. Plus, you won’t have to worry about getting your FosPower charger wet as it’s made with a rain-resistant material.
At 6.2” x 2.9” x 2.1”, the FosPower charger is very easy to fit into your backpack when heading out on your voyage. The FosPower charger is also quite light at only about 11 ounces.
Bottom line: folks looking for an affordable portable charger with dozens of fantastic features can’t go wrong this handy FosPower tool.
Esky Crank-Powered Charger
Travelers who are interested in a budget buy with many fancy features should take a peek at the Esky Crank Powered Charger. On top of the crank, Esky’s charger has a rechargeable 1000mAh battery as well as solar panels to ensure you’ll never lose power in the wilderness.
Esky claims its device is extremely durable and capable of getting bumped around without serious damage. These Esky chargers are also coated with a layer of water-resistant material.
At only 7.5 ounces, the Esky charger is the lightest product on our list. It’s also the smallest at only 5” x 2.4” x 1.8”. These specs certainly make Esky’s product a fantastic play for those who place primacy on portability.
Other features included on Esky’s charger include a flashlight, an AM/FM radio, and NOAA weather alerts. Considering this Esky charger is offered at the lower end of the price range, this is quite a steal for budget travelers.
RunningSnail Digital Crank Radio
Another versatile hand crank USB charger easily available online is put out by a company with the memorable name RunningSnail.
People who purchase RunningSnail’s charger will enjoy three charging methods: crank power, solar panels, and USB charging. It’s also worth noting this product has a rechargeable 2000mAh LI-ION battery as well as space for non-rechargeable AAA batteries.
When fully charged, RunningSnail estimates you’ll enjoy between 10 – 15 hours of radio life when listening through the product’s headphone jack. RunningSnail’s charger carries both AM/FM broadcasts and NOAA weather alerts.
Other critical features on RunningSnail’s charger include a 1 – 3W LED light and an SOS alarm. Each of these digital chargers measures 6.1” x 1.8” x 3” and weighs just under 10 ounces, perfect for travelers looking for portability.
With a complimentary 12-month replacement warranty and a 30-day money-back guarantee, there’s very little risk to try out RunningSnail’s charger for yourself.
American Red Cross FR1 Crank-Powered Charger
Looking for a super small hand crank phone charger endorsed by a globally recognized non-profit? If so, take a gander at the American Red Cross FR1 Charger.
Manufactured by Eton, this 5.4” x 2.6” x 2.4” charger is certainly one of the easiest chargers to transport on our list. This hand crank phone charger also scores high marks in the weight department at only 9 ounces.
In addition to having a crank power option, the FR1 boasts an internal lithium battery, three LED lights, and AM/FM radio access. Before leaving home, you could easily top off the product’s 2000mAh rechargeable battery using the convenient 5V/2A USB output.
A few additional FR1 features include well-lit digital displays, a headphone jack, and access to NOAA weather forecasts. Add in a mid-range price tag, and you have all the makings of a great purchase.
While this product can’t be considered a heavy-duty charger, it’s one of the most portable and affordable options now available. Considering the value price you pay, you get quite a few bells and whistles with the FR1.