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Thread: Was there ever a single A battery

  1. #1
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Was there ever a single A battery

    Just curious. I don't know why they started out with double A. Maybe the C was originally supposed to be a single A? Also, why no B's?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    As I understand it, there was (still is? I know they still make A sized rechargeables) A sizes, possibly B sizes, but they mainly used them for old radio sets and they had to have several different sizes and voltages. This was back when the radios had all sorts of various things on them and were large. I can't find any info on them really right now, but I am pretty sure they used to make B size too. As I'm sure you know, 123 is 2/3A, so it only makes sense that there was an A size to begin with.

    Spud

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    Flashaholic* DavidW's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Somewhere on some other forum this question was answered. But I don't remember a thing that was said.

    I do know there is a 4/5 A rechargeable battery out there that has about 4AH capacity. NiteRider uses them in their battery packs.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Early portable radios had an "A" battery that ran the filaments and a 45 volt "B" battery for the plate voltage. Manufacturers may have skipped "B" as a cell size to avoid confusion.

    Anybody got an early SEARS catalogue? Maybe there are clues in there.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Evan:
    Early portable radios had an "A" battery that ran the filaments and a 45 volt "B" battery for the plate voltage. Manufacturers may have skipped "B" as a cell size to avoid confusion.

    Anybody got an early SEARS catalogue? Maybe there are clues in there.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    When I was a kid in 1953, I had an RCA vacuum tube portable radio, and as I remember, the "B" battery was about 2" wide x 1" thick x about 9 or 10" long. [img]images/icons/shocked.gif[/img]

    -and yes, an "A" cell that was a little longer than a 123.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    A cells are still manufactured. 17 mm diameter X 50 mm length. 123 cells are 35 mm long, roughly 2/3 of an A cell.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Know where you can get A cells? And what voltage are they? 1.5V or 3V?

    I might have the perfect mod that could use these...

    OK, found this with a quick search...
    http://www.mbi.panasonic.co.jp/oemba...nmh/210ahe.htm

    man, I want some of these!

    and these, too!
    http://www.mbi.panasonic.co.jp/oemba...enmh/160ae.htm

    check out these long ones! http://www.mbi.panasonic.co.jp/oemba...enmh/380ae.htm

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    "A" size cells look like fat "AA" cells. I have had battery packs for my ham radios that used "A" cells. They're nice because they have a much higher current capacity, but nowadays the "AA" NiMH cells have the same or higher capacity as the old "A" NiCd cells.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    OK, I found a couple of places you can buy these...as well as the sub c cells. Not a bad option. I'm thinking of making a mod with these in mind...High capacity, too.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by JollyRoger:
    Know where you can get A cells? And what voltage are they? 1.5V or 3V?

    I might have the perfect mod that could use these...

    OK, found this with a quick search...
    and these, too! http://www.mbi.panasonic.co.jp/oemba...enmh/160ae.htm
    [/URL]
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    Those HHR160s are the 2/3 "A"
    size NimH, and are similar to the ones B.G.Micro has, except that their NimHs in that size is rated @ 800mAh-$1.19ea. (surplus-made in Japan)

    I use 'em and they work great for space-saving applications.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Sanyo sells A NiMH cells that are rated at 2450 mAh minimum, 2700 mAh typical.

    4/3 A cells are marketed at 3800 mAh. American Science and surplus sells approximately 3000 mAh mismatched 4/3 A NiMH cells cheaply. These cells show a much lower voltage drop under high load than the A cells.

    The Sanyo A cells are occasionally sold in surplus laptop battery 7.2V packs auctions. I've posted auction links on CPF in prior months. Industrial Liquidators occasionally sells them in batches of 10 packs which can be broken donwn into individual cells that will fit into Energizer DB flashlights.

    Auctions for 10 2100 mAh 7.2 Packs (that's 60 batteries) ran for $25 to $28 on EBAY, but I only interested one or two CPF'ers to bid. I was able to get 2450 mAh packs from Industrial Liquidators' local office. I have 16 unbroken packs left that I am ganging in various project lights I've discussed.

  12. #12
    Flashaholic* snakebite's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    i have some 4/5 a cells.
    nimh
    about a 1/4 in shorter than a aa or an a cell.
    1800 mah.
    i have found these perform better at high load than the sub c nicads they replace in my power screwdrivers.
    btw i have these listed in buy sell trade if you need some.
    i can get some photos of a b and c radio batts if you want to see em.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    An alkaline A is still available. It is the Duracell Procell PC12A. It is intended as a substitute for a mercury A. Mercury A's were slighty smaller(about 1mm) then c-z A's. By the way, there is often confusion about the terms A,B,C etc. batteries. In the past there were A,B, and C radio batteries and A,B,C etc. dry cells. The two groups are unrelated. A radio batteries were used to heat the vacuum tube filaments in early radios. The earliest radios often used 6 volt car batteries, while compact portables of the 40's and 50's often used multiple C or D cells as their A batteries. B radio batteries are high voltage, most commonly 22.5 45, 67.5 or 90 volts. Eveready still makes several sizes of them. On the other hand, B cells are size used in 4.5 volt European bike-light and flashlight batteries.

  14. #14
    Flashaholic pjenkins00's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    so if i found a 4/3 A battery could i use it in the e2e with the mno1 (e1 LA)?

    - Pete

  15. #15
    Flashaholic* Klaus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Pete,

    no - 1 of these cells while approx. fitting the length and dia. will only supply you with 1.2V - the MN01 still likes to see the 2.4 to 3V one 123 does supply.

    You might consider using 2 pcs of 2/3A rechargeables plus a spacer to go in a E2x running the E1 MN01 bulb - this has been discussed here earlier but I´m not shure if ever tried.

    Klaus

  16. #16
    Flashaholic pjenkins00's Avatar
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    thanks, i should've figured the voltage would be too low. i'll figure out a way to get a rechargable e2e one of these days :-D

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    I bought a single A battery from Batteries Plus. It has Excell as a brand name. The battery is the diameter of a 123 and the length of a AA. The polarity is reversed. Here's the info:

    A21/A133
    4.5V Alkaline
    - 523
    - PX21
    - EN133A
    - PC133A

    I built up a little head on it and tried it in an LS mod and it was very bright. I am scared to leave it in there. I don't want to damage the LED. How much can the Arc LS LED take without damage?

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Catdaddy:

    Batteries Plus in San Diego says that the only alkaline A cell they currently carry is the 4.5 V Excell A21. It sells for $10.99 @ and replaces the Panasonic PX21, the Energizer EN133A and the Duracell PC133A. They can't provide any capacity or voltage drop specs.

    At this price, I'm not as excited as I first was. I fear that it has three separate cells inside each of which have no more than an N cell. What can you tell us about this cell?

  19. #19

    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Catdaddy: what you have is not a single A battery. A single A has a single cell of 1.2 to 1.5 volts(3.0 or 3.6 for lithum). The battery you have is a stack of three button cells. the size of one of these cells often being referred to as a #1 or R50. The capacity should be far greater than using 3 of the commmon R44 button cells, but less than the 123A, AA combination.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Was there ever a single A battery

    Catdaddy:

    I killed my ARC LSS in 15 seconds with a CR123 plus a Lithium 1.5 V AA when I screwed a Scorpion Body into the ARC LSS head.

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