Conversion to Battery Power REA F7 Circa 1990s

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  • Member since
    December 2019
  • 1 posts
Conversion to Battery Power REA F7 Circa 1990s
Posted by trainman70 on Wednesday, December 25, 2019 11:01 AM

I recently purchased a REA F7 Diesel  and desire to convert it to Remote Control and Battery Power via a Trail Car containing the Receiver and Battery.  I would like to be able to isolate the Track Pick-ups  so there is no electrical feedback to the track. I suspect there have been previous conversions such as I desire and would appreciate any guidance or reference regarding the conversion.

  • Member since
    February 2015
  • From: Ormond Beach, FL
  • 383 posts
Posted by chocho willy on Saturday, December 28, 2019 10:16 AM

Was unable to locate where they made a F7 but imagin it is similar to there FA1 have included a link that will show parts breakdown, but usually removing any wheel brushes and or sliders will do the trick, maybe others are more familar with aristo's products, Bill

  • Member since
    November 2012
  • From: Kokomo, Indiana
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Posted by emdmike on Sunday, December 29, 2019 10:05 AM

There is room inside the REA/Aristocraft Alco FA1 diesel to put both battery and receiver.  Removal of the track sliders and electrical pickups from the wheels is the first step, then remove the chassis from the shell and wire up the RC receiver to the lights, motors and sound card(if you are adding one).  Then I mount the battery in place, usually over the rear truck or centered above the fuel tank with clear silicone caulk.  I then allow the whole thing to sit for 24 hours while that cures.  I usually charge the battery during this time.  I get my batteries from RLD hobbies.  The owner is also well versed in battery/RC installs and can provide further assistance if needed.  All of my non live steam locos are converted to onboard battery power.   Mike

Silly NT's, I have Asperger's Syndrome

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  • From: North Coastal San Diego
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Posted by Greg Elmassian on Saturday, January 11, 2020 9:06 PM

Not sure I completely agree. Assuming we are talking an Aristo-Craft FA-1, the first thing to ask is there a socket in the loco or not?


If there is, then isolating the track pickups from the motor is simple, remove the "shorting plug" from the 12 pin socket.


If not, then unplug the track pickup connectors inside the chassis. You can remove the sliders for visual appeal, but tearing open the motor blocks to remove the power pickup components is actually almost impossible, because the conductive path on the swiveling truck is also part of the suspension. Also for the other axle, it's buried in the sides of the motor block if ball bearing, or slightly differently if not ball bearing.


If you read this and say, wow that sounds complicated to disconnect that way, it is!


If you take a shot of the inside of the loco, we can see wha types of connectors were used for motor and track pickup, and if it has a socket or not.


You can go to my site and read this introductory page, and there are links at the bottom of the page with 4 more pages of information on the FA



Visit my site: - lots of tips on locos, rolling stock and more.

 Click here for Greg's web site


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