Articles - Battery Power: C) Intro to S-CAB
External Reference:
I bought Neil Stanton's S-CAB system in late-2012. At the time it was only sold through North West ShortLine (NWSL). However, in 2013 Neil created the S-CAB web site and started to sell the products directly. Many of the systems mentioned on the "Battery-powered Systems" page were not yet available at the time I made my purchase. However, even today, looking at what is available, I still find that the S-CAB system is the most complete package with a minimum of fuss.

At the time I purchased my S-CAB system, I had been using the Digitrax' DCC system for about 13 years, both at home and at the clubs I belonged to. In the end, I completely gave up on the Digitrax system.

Fundamentally, S-CAB is a radio-frequency train control system. The throttle sends your commands to the receiver in the locomotive. This removes the train-control signals from the rail, thereby making communication easier and better. Secondly, once Neil built that system, he continued and incorporated the ability to power all of the electronics within a locomotive from a rechargeable cell-phone-sized battery. The battery-power system is separate from the core S-CAB system. However, I bought both the S-CAB and the battery-power components, since the latter was really what I was after. The beauty of Neil's S-CAB system is that it is a completely self-contained system. It includes components to safely charge the battery from any electricity detected on the rails, and it safely shuts down the system when the battery has reached its drained state. This allows you to let the engine charge via a piece of powered track, and let it sit overnight without any worries.

If you are in Australia, Berg's Hobbies is an authorized retailer of the S-CAB system there. I included the Podcast links above so that you can hear a bit about Neil's history and how he got involved in partnering with NWSL, and about why and how he designed the S-CAB system.