15 July 2014

Battery case for Kenwood TH-42E


an older radio's accessories like battery packs are hard to find quite often. In case of the VHF/UHF handhelds the situation is not so bad as some of the new models are using the compatible battery packs and they can be ordered and re-used.

In case of my very old (Made in Japan) Kenwood handy TH-42E which I got from SK estate it is different situation. You can find on the several re-seller's webs as same as on the eBay the OEM battery packs. I do not want to spend money for low-cost cells in these packs so I found on the same source the empty battery case BT-32.
It sounds to me nice as I can load it with my preffered higher quality cells and still I have under control the complete unit. I ordered it and after few weeks it arrived.

It looks good and even I was a bit surprised with the label KENWOOD BT-32 "Made in Japan". The label on the front cover is talking also about 7.2V DC (charging) supply voltage, 5x AA cells size case! I know that it is OEM unit so I did not expected japanesse item to come. The explanation I got after openning the case.

The soldering inside is definitelly not made in Japan and it is real nightmare.

It is typical chinesse piece of junk as I do not believe that japanesse industry degraded to that lowest work-craft level.

So no matter what is labeled on the front cover it is China product. If You will have problem with contacts, charging socket or so then You must check properly the soldering inside the case.

Be careful and do not over-heat the plastic parts to avoid destroying the case or contacts as it is not rugged design in all.

73 - Petr, OK1RP

Update 16 July 2014

The real nightmare will come to You when You will try to loading the case with rechargeable cells!

Trying to put all AA-cells into the case will discover that case itself is a bit smaller. Unfortunatelly thanks to non-flexible and hard (probably low cost) steel contacts the cells are bending the plastic case and distorting it.

Because of that issue both parts of the battery case is impossible to lock properly together.

You can try to bending the steel contacts inside the case by pliers (be very careful to not damage case itself) but it will not fit on both sides of the case.

Finaly if You will try to slip in to the TH-42E transceiver then You will not succeed as it is impossible to lock it.

Simply it is typical piece of junk from China and I can not recommend it to anybody to buy it anywhere on chinesse webs or thru eBay. It is wasting of Your money and You will be disapointed!

73 - Petr, OK1RP

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