RC SHOP SERVICES PAGE
AMB TRANSPONDER CELL REPLACEMENT
Since 2006, I have been doing AMBrc and AMB20 Cell replacing. The price is $30,unit. I also offer the same service to TranX 160 and TranX 260 units. The TranX units run $60 to $80 depending on what version they are and what cell or pack is needed to fix them. Return Shipping/Handling cost are extra. Please CLICK HERE to contact me if interested or have any questions. Be aware that these AMB Transponder Repairs are only to replace the failed or failing cell. If the transponder is otherwise bad, replacing the cell won't fix it. It is also possible to replace the LED's on AMBrc and AMB20 unit for an added $10. Some LED's in TranX units can be replaced also for $15. On some really old transponders, the LED can get broken if the silicone is too hard and will need to be replaced. Others the LED is so dim you would be better off getting that replace too. I have also seen LED's get cracked in TranX units.
IMPORTANT FACTS ABOUT SHIPPING INSURANCE
I recently got an education about shipping insurance. Now I can tell people some things they need to know. Basically, shipping insurance is a scam by shippers to get you to pay more for their services without any real expectation you will get the coverage you paid for, or any coverage at all in many cases. I plan to do a more proper presentation on this subject, possibly a video presentation also, but for now I will just paste in a few points off of a post in my forum. Here you go:
Title: Shipping insurance... Yeah right...
Grayson (My Son) and I sent out a laptop for warranty service worth $1600 using USPS. I will talk about that BS when that war is over, but for now I want to let you all know what a scam buying insurance on shipping can be. Here are some important points:
So, if you want something you cannot live with losing without any ability to recover the loss to get somewhere safely, do not send it out by the USPS or any commercial shipping service without reading the contract and getting it in writing that you will recover the insured value fully without any problem. Being this is not possible, realize you either need to bring the item to the place you want it to go yourself or find someone you can trust to deliver it there for you. You can expect any shipper will do everything they can to avoid paying you the loss you insured your package for.
So, how does sending your transponders to me, or anyone else, for any reason, by any commercial service, relate to you? In the case of AMB20 and AMBrc R/C model racing transponders go, if the shipper loses the package or it is somehow destroyed, it will be a total loss for you. It does not matter how much you pay to ensure them for and the shipper will readily take your money for that imaginary coverage without warning you that it is useless. AMB20 and AMBrc transponders are obsolete items. I'll tell you right now, I would not sell you a rebuilt AMBrc transponder for less than $150, but if you sent a row of ten of them to me or I sent them back to you using the USPS system insuring them for $1000, both ways, and they lose or destroy them, you will not be paid the coverage you paid for. The USPS will block you from claim service as long as they can, force you to use only their online claim filing system, deny your claim in any way they think they can get away with, force you to produce dated purchase receipts, pictures of the articles in question, make you jump through hoops following their rules, make you wait for their set time periods before denying your claim, then you must appeal again and again, and etc... So, in the case of a obsolete transponder, in the end, it will only be seen as worth whatever they decide to value it as. It does not matter to these crooks that you may not be able to replace them again now, at any price, and the fact you paid for that $1000 in coverage will not be honored by these crooks because, they do not have any honor nor respect for you at the USPS claims department. After all, we are talking about the US government and we the people are just slaves here to serve them, right? Sorry, got off the main subject on to a reality track. The bottom line is, shipping insurance is a scam. Unless you have a legally valid receipt or appraisal proving the worth of your item/s that is less than a month old, they agree to honor that receipt or appraisal of the amount of value, and you get it in writing they agree to insure to that shown value before you hand it to them to ship out, if they lose or damage your package and article/s, you can expect they will make every attempt to deny to pay you. I can assure you this is all true and expect it is also the case with both UPS and FedEx. So, what does this all mean? Shipping the transponders to me and my shipping them back to you by your choice of shippers, insured or not and at your expense is entirely at your risk. I cannot make these shipping companies honor their failings in any way and cannot assume the loss should they fail causing the loss of your transponders. To date, I have not had any shipping service lose or destroy any transponders in or out of my shop, but I just want everyone to know that if or when it happens, you will see how these corporate companies will not take responsibility for anything and you will be lucky if they pay you a cent. You have been warned be me, a decent, honest and respectable man. I hesitate to call myself a business man, even though I am one, because for many people in the business world, when they get ahead by trampling on others, morality does not apply and screwing others is excusable. I am not one of those people. Thank you for your attention to this matter.
WANT TO TRY TO REPAIR YOUR OWN? PLEASE READ ON...
I have worked out a good procedure for replacing the 1.2 volt NiMH button cell in AMBrc Rechargeable Transponders that fail naturally with regular use. A new cell generally makes them as good as new again. Don't try this unless you are pretty good with your hands and with a blade.
A properly operating AMBrc Rechargeable Transponder should flash once green and then go to it's red LED showing it is in charge mode when you put it in your charging rack. If it does not do this, there may be more wrong with it than a bad cell. Unfortunately, AMB no longer produces the AMB20 nor AMBrc, so your only option is to fix the ones you have or search out used ones that still work. I have very limited AMB20 and AMBrc transponders, but will not let them go without a fight. What I mean is, I am scared to sell them because of my own racing services and if I do let one go it won't be chap. Moving on, a new AMBrc Transponder would flash green for a minimum of 18 hours after fully charged according to AMB. I consider any Transponder that won't flash green for 6 hours due for cell replacement. Don't try to do this if you are not ready to accept failure. The first one I did went dead. I still don't know exactly why. It may have been just a coincidence, but possibly I ground in too deep and damaged something. I now have refined my procedures and have years of practice. In any case, you must have the tools and technical abilities needed to do this job. Good luck to you. I take no responsibility for any damages you do by following these instructions.
Here is how I do it. Open them by carefully prying off the battery compartment cover. (The part with the mounting post) This is hard to do without damaging the assembly. I used a small table vise, Exacto knife blades and a very sharp 3/4" wood chisel. First use the Exacto knife and get the cap loose on all sides. I found the assembly is packed with clear silicone rubber glue before squeezing on the cover and this is what holds the cap on. What I found works is to push in the wood chisel on the opposite side the the ID Number is on to cut and pry the back off. You must be careful not to cut into things wrong because you cannot destroy the back cap nor go the other way and break the LED's. AMB will not sell you any parts. Once the cap is removed, you need to start cleaning the silicone off to reveal the top of the two LED's and NiMH Button Cell popping up out of a pool of hard, red epoxy. Use the wood chisel to scrape the silicone out of the cap.
At this point, you can now see how these units are built. It looks like they start with the main shell with charging posts installed, slip the component board over these charge post pins and solder these pins to the board. After this, they install the 1.2 Volt Button Cell. The OEM Button Cells I had in my transponders were GP 80BVH NiMH with solder tabs attached to extend past the outer edge for both the positive and negative sides. These solder tabs are soldered to connection posts sticking out of the board for them. The cell is positioned below and between the LED's. If you were to look at the assembly as it relates to how the cell is installed thinking of the cell as the center of a clock, the AMBrc Transponder LED's would be approximately in the 10:00 and 2:00 positions, the negative tab solders to a round post at 6:00, and the positive tab solders to a flat post at about 4:00. AMB20 are laid out differently.
The way the AMBrc Transponder is built, they were not designed to be repaired in my opinion. If there is anything besides a bad battery, I doubt even AMB can repair them. They likely just recycle the ID number as usable back into their data base and discard it. I bet they don't even repair the ones with just bad cells because it is difficult and time consuming. After you pry off the back and clean off all of that silicone rubber, you have to chisel the cell out of that hard epoxy without wrecking the solder posts, LED's and/or damaging the board to allow the fitting and installation of a new cell. If you were capable to get to this point, I should not need to tell you how to reassemble the transponder with a new cell. Before you epoxy the new cell in place and seal the case, I recommend you test the unit to ensure it works properly. No sense in wasting a new cell on a failed transponder.
My main purpose with this section is to warn people that are considering trying to do their own work on their rechargeable AMB transponders what they are getting themselves into. If you have the needed tools and are very good with your hands in doing delicate work, go for it. If you feel uncertain you can do the job, it is probably best to use a reputable third party service like KRC Products. (Our Company) I have done hundreds of these now and will get you back in business right away. Remember though that if there is more wrong than a bad cell or LED, they cannot be repaired. Also, you can no longer buy these anymore new, only used ones from another site if you are lucky, so take care of what you have.
Would you like us to replace your bad Transponder cells? We do this for only $30 each parts included for the AMBrc and AMB20. AMB TranX 160/260 are $60-$80 each depending on the versions and what cell or pack is needed. CLICK HERE to schedule our services.
Kevin's R/C Products runs R/C races using AMB Race Management Equipment. It can be pre-arranged for me to run events at your location provided there is some profitability possible, I can fit it in my schedule and the location is not too far from us. I have fully mobilized all my equipment by putting everything into a 6' x 12' Cargo Trailer that can set up a race very quickly and professionally at any site. Please click here to contact me for more info.
Below is the start-up screen for Autoscore. All of our races are run using this professional race management system.
Below is the Rechargeable Transponders used to track lap times of the individual racers and the decoder to process information to be sent to the race computer. The charging rack is both a holder and charger. Racers take the assigned Transponder from this rack and install it into their R/C model before each heat or main and it is held in place by a body clip.
Race Management Service Details
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