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3rd Rail Sunset O gauge: Rechargeable Nickel-Cadmium Battery Replacement

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3rd Rail Sunset O gauge: Rechargeable Nickel-Cadmium Battery Replacement
Posted by Jones1945 on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 4:51 AM

Dear all, 

I bought this O gauge 3rd Rail Sunset PRR S1 (November 1999 CTT) from eBay, it is an untouched new-old-stock and the seller is kind enough to suggest me to replace the original onboard rechargeable battery (A "Model PB 1605" 8.4 Volt 120mAh Plainview Batteries, Charge @ 11mA (max) for 14-16 Hrs).  The sound system was by QSI. I am quite sure the tender is unwrapped with original packaging. 

Is it ok to replace the battery with a rechargeable 9V 280mAh NiMH Battery? which battery brand's product will work best for this model? Thank you so much for your help!

Jones

Tags: NiMH Battery
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  • From: Reading, PA
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Posted by rrinker on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 7:12 AM

 That's an MTH decoder, not QSI. They are the ones who used batteries to store the config settings and other stuff.

 That should work, but only if you frequently run the loco. It will take a long time to charge up, and it will self discharge if left sitting on a shelf. And then take a long time to charge up again before the loco is usable.

 I found this - these guys make a battery replacement circuit that fits in place of the 9V battery. Basically it's a supercapacitor. If the loco has been sitting on a shelf, you just put it on the track for a minute to charge it up and it's working again. 

https://www.jandwelectronics.com/bcr

 

You can get an MTH labeled one for about $13

https://www.amazon.com/M-T-H-Electric-Trains-Protosound-Battery/dp/B0006O7896/ref=asc_df_B0006O7896/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=312136795426&hvpos=1o4&hvnetw=g&hvrand=8701435760508716297&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1025222&hvtargid=pla-569131654934&psc=1

Old one was white, new ones are green. Same battery.

                               --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 10:49 AM

Thank you so much for the respond, Randy. The BCR is exactly what I am looking for! The engine is so heavy that I probably only operate it occasionally. 

  • Member since
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  • From: Reading, PA
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Posted by rrinker on Tuesday, November 19, 2019 12:28 PM

Edit: Seems the old QSI-3000 decoders had a 9V battery as well. Almost but not quite identical board to the ProtoSounds 1.0 boards from MTH. What I haven't been able to find is if the system charges it when in use like the MTH. If it does, the battery replacement would work, because they both used the same value rechargeable batteries. There's mention that Lionel does not charge the battery when running, so a Lionel loco needs an additional charger circuit. QSI is not mentioned. Might want to give that company a call before ordering the battery replacement to see if it works in a QSI decoder. I suspect it probably will, but better to be sure than have nothing work.

FOund an article on the model loco - the Sunset one indeed had QSI sound, so it wouldn't have the battery. Came out in 1999, just 350 made and were $1500. Weighed in around 13 pounds - heavy, but not exceptionally so for such a large loco. The MTH version with their sound system which does use the 9V battery came out in 2004 and was much heavier than the Sunset brass version. 

http://cs.trains.com/ctt/b/staff/archive/2018/05/24/two-brunswick-bullets-prr-s1-6-4-4-6s-by-sunset-models-1999-and-mth-2004p.aspx

 

                       --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

  • Member since
    April 2018
  • 1,260 posts
Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 1:17 AM

Randy, the battery I removed immediately when I received the model is precisely what you mentioned, a white 8.4V 120mAh rechargeable battery that looks like the MTH green battery sold at $13, exactly look like the white battery in the middle of this pic:

 

My pic:

  • Member since
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  • From: Reading, PA
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Posted by rrinker on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 8:27 AM

 The only thing I don't know is if the QSI decoder charges the battery while the loco is in use. That might be a question for the people that make the battery substitute device. Or possibly in the CTT forums. I'm just looking most of this up. The obviously safe and will work option is a replacement battery of the same spec, but if the loco is seldom used, there's a good argument for the supercap replacement device. 

 Back in those days, microcontrollers with flash memory that wouldn't need a battery to keep things saved were too expensive in small quantities. Plus those boards are mostly analog sound, not digital stored recordings like modern sound decoders.

                                 --Randy

 


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

  • Member since
    April 2018
  • 1,260 posts
Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 9:59 PM

I got you, Randy. I would buy the MTH rechargeable battery of the same spec first (the green one). I almost forget that the model is already 20 years old!

Thank you so much for your help and thorough reply.Yes

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