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Update- correct battery for RL411


MikeRL411

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I'm posting this here instead of in the electrical section since this battery is unique to the RL411 [and 1964 Corvair, but that's a story to follow below].  Currently you can get a new type 53 correct battery through the AC Delco supply chain.  In Southern California the warehouse is in Huntington Beach.  There would be local distributors in other parts of the country.  Go to your usual local parts place and have them call ACDelco.  If the Delco distributor gives a "Huh!" response to the Datsun reference, sic them on to the 1964 Corvair, it's the only other car that uses this battery.  There may be some trucks or forklifts using it, but this is almost sure fire cross reference that will work.

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Well. good news and bad news.  The entire West Coast supply of type 53 Delco batteries were in the Huntington Beach warehouse.  Both of them had sat on the shelf for so long that they were flat lined, no voltage at all.  Delco was willing to special order [read make from scratch] a new one.  4 to 6 months and $300!  That's the bad news  Unless you are striving for a Petersen Museum piece, read on.

 

Peerless Auto Parts [Torrance CA]  researched an acceptable substitute, the 29NF battery.  It is about as long, slightly wider than the 53 case.  You have to trim the triangular stiffening gussets inside the factory plastic drip tray but it just fits.  A good point is that although the 29NF looks slightly taller, its terminals are on the engine block side, not the fender side so there is clearance to the hood and also no danger of shorting the positive terminal to the too close right front fender when overly enthusiastically tightening the cable clamps.  I am going to buy aftermarket hold down fasteners because the originals are just a bit too short to have 2 to 3 threads exposed when tightened down.

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  • 1 month later...

Went to batteries + and orders an SLI53 battery. Had it two days later. $179. Didn't seem to be any issue getting it.

 

Good thing they had it!  My basic problem was that the Southern California ACDelco net showed availability, but all [read both] units had died on the shelf.  The tag with the punch outs for year of installation had expired on the high side 4 years ago!  Who knows just when the batteries had actually been manufactured and initially charged.  There's a place for "Dry Charged" batteries that come with a jug of sulfuric acid!

 

For RL411 owners who want visual and capacity authenticity, this source and battery number is worth following up on!  Now to cut a "YUASA" stencil and get a spray can of red paint.

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  • 6 years later...

MikeRL411,

Per ACDelco, the battery is NLA.  Do you have any suggestions for a "period correct appearance" battery?

Thanks,

Keith

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No.  Use a Honda compatible battery and it will at least fit the factory acid drip plastic tray.  They are narrow enough the avoid being battered by the alternator and its bracket. You will have to modify a battery hold down that uses a peripheral frame to hold the battery in position, the original hold down runs across any replacement battery acid fill holes.  If you live near a general aviation airport you may have an original YUASA or Delco battery rebuilt by a general aviation battery shop.

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On 1/8/2021 at 3:24 PM, zed1 said:

MikeRL411,

Per ACDelco, the battery is NLA.  Do you have any suggestions for a "period correct appearance" battery?

Thanks,

Keith

 

The real reason the battery is NLA is that only 2 vehicles used it.  The 1964 Corvair and the RL411.  Not a huge market.

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