May 192012
 

This morning, I put my LP-E6 battery for my Canon EOS 7D camera on to charge in the standard LC-E6E charger, but it did not charge at all.

The charger has a single LED which shows the charging state of the battery. While charging, the LED is orange – it flashes once and pauses when the battery is less than 50% charged, twice and a pause when the battery is less than 75% charged and three flashes and a pause when the charge is less than 100%. Once the battery is fully charged, the LED turns green and lights continuously.

*   *   *   *   *  < 50%
**  **  **  ** ** < 75%
*** *** *** *** *** <100%
******************** = Problem!

When I connected the battery, it flashed orange rapidly with no pause.

To fix the problem, I unplugged the charger, I cleaned all four contacts using a dry duster. There are two copper ‘blades’ and two silver ‘bent wire’ contacts. The charger seems to gather lots of dust. I also cleaned the contacts on the battery taking great care not to touch them with anything conductive. The exposed contacts can be rubbed gently with a cloth, but the two slots which connect to the ‘blades’ on the charger are harder to clean. I folded a clean piece of paper in half and gently pushed it into the slots – there was a small amount of fluff which came out of the slots.

When I put the battery on to charge again, it was showing 50% charged and after a few minutes showed 75%.

I hope this will save you spending £75 on a new battery, or £50 or a new charger!

May 062012
 

My girlfriend wanted a unique and interesting case for her mobile phone to replace the one she was using. She had seen handbags made of old books and I had recently bought a Dodocase for my playbook and that gave us the idea of  hacking an old book into a phone case. Here’s how I did it and how it looks…

A cheap, but attractive book

A cheap, but attractive book

Step 1, find an attractive book about the right size for your phone. We looked in book shops and charity shops before finding a nice ivory coloured book titled “An Anthology of Love” – try not to pick a rare or valuable book!

A cheap eBay case

A cheap eBay case

Step 2, get a cheap case for your phone which you can steal the mount from – the one we used was from eBay and cost £1.99

Pages removed

Pages removed

Step 3, carefully trim the pages out of the cover, and trim the paper which makes up the inside of the cover to reveal the edges of the fabric which makes up the outside of the cover. Dampening the paper with soapy water helps unstick it. I decided not to remove all of the paper as it could damage the cardboard and make the cover weak.

Fix the paper, unstick the outer cover

Fix the paper, unstick the outer cover

Step 4, Glue down any parts of the paper which are hanging off – I used PVA ‘white’ glue. Also unstick the edges of the outer cover and flatten them out.

Mark where to cut

Mark where to cut

Step 5, Put your phone, in the mount, in place on the cover and mark where the cardboard needs to be trimmed.

Mark the cuts and unfold the other sides

Mark the cuts and unfold the other sides

Step 6, Unfold the other edges and draw straight lines where you are going to cut the cardboard.

Cut the cardboard

Cut the cardboard

Step 7, Carefully peel the outer cover away from the cardboard until you are just past the line, then cut the cardboard with a craft knife and steel rule.

Trim the outer cover

Trim the outer cover

Step 8, Trim the outer cover to size – use the existing cover as a template.

Glue the edges and cut holes

Glue the edges and cut holes

Step 9, Glue the outer cover down nice and tight, and cut any holes you ned for the phone camera etc.

Step 10, Glue a ribbon across the middle of the cover to allow you to tie it closed later. Glue it firmly – I used a hot-melt glue gun.

Step 11, Cover the inside of the cover with a rectangle of paper. Glue it down firmly and take the opportunity to print a fancy inside cover if you like.

Step 12, Glue the plastic mount into place – again I used hot-melt glue, and plenty of it!

Outside cover

Outside cover

Step 13, Put your phone in the mount and show it off to your friends 🙂

Inside the case

Inside the case

 

The back cover

The back cover

 Posted by at 12:47 am