This E7A will be my second Locomotive carrying a video camera, my first is a Athearn PA-1 shown below.
I started out using a Proto 2000 E8 Dummy. I mounted all the equipment to the Proto frame.
The camera on-off and LED lighting are individually controlled from the DCC decoder in the pusher.
While the totally isolated camera works glitch free the Proto E8A frame wouldn't run without constant derailing. I had several other Proto E7s,8s & 9s that also derail too often. After gauging the wheels dozens of times as well as replacing all the axles it appeared to be a problem with the Proto E series truck design. I have several other Proto 2000 six wheel truck locomotives that never derail, PAs and SDs. With a bit of re-engineering and elbow grease I re-trucked the E8 frame with PA trucks, problem solved.
I had enlarged the lower headlight in my PA-1 to accommodate the camera but I liked the front door option on the Proto shell so I went to work on the new shell.
I bought a two cell Lithium battery charging card and installed a three pin micro connector on the bottom rear of the frame. I made 4 foot long cable to go between the charging board and the E7A to charge the batteries when they need charging. Before this overhaul I had to pull the shell and remove the batteries to charge them. A single charge gives me between 24 to 30 hours of operation.
I'll cover the Pusher Project next.