Quantum Battery 1+ Won't Charge

Discussion in 'Lighting Equipment' started by http://www.photo.netgarywilliams, Aug 1, 2020.

  1. I have a QB1+ (SN/M299) that uses the single 6v battery and when I plug it into the charger the amber power light comes on but the red battery level indicator LED flashes and never changes regardless how long the batter is on the charger. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Rechargeable cells/batteries don't last forever, and it says as much in the manual. So it sounds like yours has come to the end of the road.

    It's possible to rebuild some battery packs using replacement cells - usually a lot cheaper than a new pack from the maker. However, this requires some DIY skills and the use of a soldering iron.

    It also depends on the battery technology used: Nickel-metal-hydride cells are readily available in a variety of sizes and capacities. While Lithium cells are more difficult to source unless they're the common 1850 type. Lithium cells also come in chipped 'intelligent' versions, and you can more or less forget about resurrecting any of those.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2020
    Gary Naka likes this.
  3. You can call Quantum Instruments, and they may be able to give you an estimate for cell replacement. The other option is to contact Batteries Plus. They do cell replacement also.
  4. Don't the Quantum 1s use sealed lead acid?

    If so, the individual cells look a lot like an overgrown D cell, but will have tabs on them rather than standard terminals. The cells normally carry the branding EnerSys Cyclon, and have a distinctive black and white design with a red stripe around the middle. Stores like Batteries+ do carry at least some varieties of these, and if they have the correct ones can properly assemble a replacement pack by spot-welding the cells together.

    With that said, a few years back, I needed a 6V SLA battery for a different application that calls for a larger/higher capacity Cyclon cell than is currently porduced(or at least that I could find). Somewhere-either on Amazon or Ebay-I found a premade 3-cell shrinkwrapped package that was specced as a drop-in replacement for for Quantum packs. I actually made do with that pack in my application(a fairly valuable old computer-a Macintosh Portable-that really needs a functioning battery to not fry the power circuits in use) and it's still working probably 4 years later.

    Also, once rebuilt, I suggest periodically charging to keep the battery healthy. Lead acid cells are among the oldest battery technology, and fundamentally are nearly a perfect rechargeable battery aside from their size and weight. Cells can be designed for "deep discharge"-your car battery is not meant to be fully discharged and can actually be damaged if you let it get that way(ideally you will expend only a small part of the total charge when starting the car, and the alternator should quickly top it back up)-while these small cells are designed with regular deep discharges in mind. Even in a cell designed for it, though, lead acids are still happiest when charged and keeping them that way will prolong their life. I keep my Macintosh Portable plugged in all the time even though it's a rarely used curio. A few years back, I also bought a genuine Metz replacement SLA for my 60CT4 battery pack, and also try to plug it in once a month or so even if it's not actively in use to keep it topped up and hopefully extend its life.
  5. The estimate I got for a re-cell of my Quantum Battery +1 was $80. I sent mine in 2 weeks ago and they still haven't told me when I will get my battery back. I called Promark which now handles Quantum repairs and the manager there said she only has 1 technician working due to COVID.
  6. That's a very quaint battery technology these days Ben.
  7. What's under the hood in your car?

    The only rechargeable battery chemistry with comparable energy density and low internal impedance is LiH. If you're driving a Tesla 3, that would be your answer. For everyone else, it's lead-acid.

    I have two dead Quantum batteries, the first lead-acid and the second NiMH. I used them for portable flash units for a while, after my Quantum flash unit fell apart (literally). My experience did little to encourage me to have them repaired or replaced. If it mattered any more, I'd look to one of the cheaper knock-off replacements.
  8. To be fair, hybrids have Li-Ion, but they also have a lead acid also. It's a simple and basically fool proof technology to supply the kind of loads peak loads that cranking an engine requires.

    Even though it's an old technology, it has stuck around for well over 100 years for a reason. And yes, despite the weight, there's a lot of things where they excel.
  9. That sealed lead-acid energy density comes at a heavy cost - literally. Over 1kg for 3 of those Cyclon 5AH cells. Whereas C sized 4AH NiMh cells weigh only 80 g each, giving you 80% of the capacity at less than half the weight.

    Weight for weight, I make that a 2:1 win for the Nickel-metal-hydride corner.

    My very first Metz pro electronic flash used a 6v sealed lead acid battery. It was seemingly always in need of charging and the battery barely lasted 2 years before needing (quite expensive and to special order) replacement.

    Thanks, but I'll take relatively cheap and readily available 2500mAH NiMh AAs any day of the week.
  10. I re-celled my Quantum Battery +2 myself because Quantum/Promark does not support that product anymore. I purchased (4 ) 2 volt 2.5AH D cells from this company located in Minnesota: Batteries Rechargeable (Secondary) | Battery Products | DigiKey. You can also get them at Battery Plus. It took me maybe 1/2 hour to replace the old leaking cells with the new ones and now the pack is working fine. You can find the instructions to re-cell the Quantum Battery +1 here:
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
  11. Another vote for Batteries Plus. I've refurbished a bunch of rechargeable batteries with supplies from them.
  12. For packs like the Quantum and similar, I would stick to the original battery chemistry. Then you can use the original charger.
    If you change battery chemistry, you may not be able to use the original charger, and have to make/buy a new charger. If you know what you are doing, this is not an issue. But if you don't, you have to be careful.

Share This Page