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Re: Eclair ACL NP Battery holder

Hi all. I'm glad to find that some folks out there really do want an onboard battery holder --- but I'd need at least 2 dozen orders to make mass production cost effective. The holder is not for the NP battery --- I judged the NP battery to be too large and cumbersome for the ACL --- so I designed it to accept the 12V 2ah camcorder battery blocks. They are similar in rectangular boxey look to the NP, but much smaller --- about the size of an Aaton battery. These batteries are lead acid. Personally, I then gut the lead acid and install Nickel Metal Hydride batteries (14.4v) into the case, and I use an NP charger. What you end up with is a much smaller and lighter mini-NP type of battery. If there is a switch on the handle, a suitable jack can be easily wired into the cable leading out from the holder.

While I doubt that I'm going to be inundated with enough demand to manufacture, you can take a look and drool at the prototype at:

It is not yet black anodized in the photo. It attaches to where the ACL II handle adapter would go. This might be preferable to the ACL II battery holder, which attaches on the rear of the right side with the screws that hold the camera together, placing a possible strain on the camera base plate that "in theory" might affect flange collomation. I can't begin to say how much easier it makes shooting to have a light-weight battery on-board. One of these days I'll just publish the plans for those of you with access to machine shops, as I doubt I'll ever be able to make it cost effective to sell on a small scale (in small batches the things are $500 a piece COST!) Or perhaps Les will market something. I don't really want to be in the ACL parts business anyway --- I just landed there by accident when I decided to make the HD-144 parts for my own cameras, and discovered it was only cost effective in quantity. (By the way, just 2 GOLD kits left! )


PS - As an aside, I have found much better performance with French 400 foot mags and my CP Motor since switching to 14.4v . The loss-of-speed lamp never goes on (except for the few frames as the camera gets to speed when you turn it on) --- previously it would flick on for an instant every once in a while until the battery got weak enough to cause it to stay on. I wonder if, possibly, the burnout problem with the original ACL motor could have related to the motor being underpowered. Perhaps the motor fighing to maintain speed at under 12v is more of a strain than just pumping away at 14.4v ??? Any electronics whizzes out there with an opinion? PPS -- Because of a surge in the demand for etching the ground glass for Super-16 ACLs over the past year, a company in California is considering manufacturing the entire prism with the etchings, for those who want to preserve their R-16 ground glass. I'll post a note if they decide to go ahead. (If there are those out there who would want to order one, let me know and I'll pass along the word --- they are still on the fence about it since they are worried that after making a dozen on spec the demand will suddenly stop). No word on cost.
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