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Changing tension lock couplers - Layout Design, Trackwork & Operation. - Getting You Started. - Your Model Railway Club
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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 12:39 am
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BCDR
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Hi Michael,

Symoba 203 NEM 362 from DCC supplies. That way you can use the KD #18-20 and adjust the close coupling. 

Nigel



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 01:23 am
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Once again folks, thank you very much - a mine of information and advice

Michael



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 01:25 am
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Thanks John - That is rather what I had thought.  I might try a few experiments and see where it gets us

Michael



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 01:27 am
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Zelda - interesting idea of using card.  Have you tried it?  What is its longevity?

Michael



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 01:29 am
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Thank you Nigel  Have you used these?  They look quite long in the photo, but then I know photos can be deceptive

Regards

Michael



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 02:45 am
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Headmaster wrote: Zelda - interesting idea of using card.  Have you tried it?  What is its longevity?

Michael
 
I have tried it, yes. I've found it to be a decently effective remedy in cases where pieces of plastic refuse to stay glued directly to each other. The card holds up alright in the circumstances because the CA glue soaks into it. In my most recent use of it, the joints have held up to getting dropped on the floor a couple times.



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 02:48 am
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Hi Michael,

Length of the pocket or the KD? for freight trucks and vans a #18 one end and a #19  or   #17 works unless you have tight curves. Length of the pocket should confirm to NEM 362.  Adjust the position so the pocket is at the end of the wagon. Dapol's version does not apparently conform to NEM 362.


I tried Simoba when I was experimenting with PD blocks and Bachmann NEM couplers.


I ended up with 'ol reliable KD #5 couplers and boxes. Lot cheaper. And if you use the semi-scale versions they are less noticeable. Glue and screw. Height is crucial, the gauge is a must.


Be prepared to experiment to get what works for you.


Nigel



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 03:15 am
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BCDR, Michael already said that Kadee *5s turned out to be too short for his stock. And that he has a height gauge. ;-) :tongue

I had suggested using McHenry knuckle couplers because the ones made for Rivarossi passenger cars have a dovetail that looks rather like the one on the coupler Michael showed in the first post (with the addition of centering whiskers).



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 01:46 pm
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Hi Michael,

Zelda points out an important issue. Depends on the buffer length. Some old Hornby stock has out of scale and overlong buffers, which with a number 5 will cause buffer lock on tight radii. Which is when you kick yourself for going with 24" and not 36" .

if a #5 doesn't work there are others. KD long shanks are almost as long as a 362 #18, and the box can be moved out a mm or so without becoming obtrusive. The center of the knuckle should be level with the buffer head. As I said, you have to experiment. And perhaps change those buffers for shorter ones. The reason they are long is because of the length of the tension locks.

I covered all of this in one one of my very first posts here. Using PD mounting blocks, Bachmann NEM couplers for the boxes/hinge and KD NEM couplers works fine, but is expensive. One issue about using styrene glue to attach anything to old stock is that it doesn't work for that long. Even when the surface is keyed. Acetal/nylon I think was used for the chassis. Hence the switch to boxes and screws.

Fetling will be required, especially with the PD mounts. One of the issues with UK manufacturers not being NEM compliant.

You could always try the Dapol system.


Nigel



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 04:32 pm
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Hi Michael,

Just in case you missed it:

http://yourmodelrailway.net/view_topic.php?id=11873&forum_id=62#p207023

Second post I made on the forum back in 2013. I was using some old Mainline wagons. The glue I was using (Testors) did not hold about 2 years later, when the PD blocks fell off.

Nigel



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 08:33 pm
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Thanks Nigel - I had missed that one.  Very helpful indeed.  And I thought I had read everything on Kadees here!! 

Regards

Michael



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 08:58 pm
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NEM pockets ordered, some more Kadee couplers ordered.  If I learn anything of value that hasn't already been said, I will post it here

Thanks everyone

Michael



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 Posted: Tue Mar 12th, 2019 09:05 pm
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The Kadee 19 I put into my shunter had a bit of play in it.  I cut a small shim of plastic from the coupler packaging and slid it into the box.  No more play.  The packaging is very useful and free!

Michael



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 Posted: Wed Mar 13th, 2019 02:59 pm
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Hi Michael,

Is that a pocket supplied by the loco manufacturer? I doubt the #19 is undersized. I found this with most newer locomotives that have "362" pockets. For some reason the pockets that come with "NEM" tension lock couplers seem to be better. Get some and swap them over. If you ordered Dapol pockets they may require fetling as they do not conform to NEM 362. Symoba do, made in Germany.

Nigel



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 Posted: Wed Mar 13th, 2019 09:00 pm
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I have found that Kadee plug-in couplers tend to have a bit too much vertical slop in some NEM pockets so a sliver of plastic jammed into the pocket underneath the coupler shank works the treat.



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 Posted: Thu Mar 14th, 2019 11:58 pm
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Yes Sol, that was exactly the problem.  Solved now!

Bachman tension lock couplers in NEM pockets arrived today.  They are a perfect fit  - no play at all!  Height is wrong, so I will figure out how to glue them and sort that out.  I may also need to order some other kadees  - I only have N19, but I think I need some shorter ones too.  

I definitely think the buffer beams are too long - I think I will need to cut them off, trim them and re fix them  Has anybody done this?  Any advice?

Regards

Michael



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 Posted: Sat Mar 16th, 2019 11:21 am
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Hi Michael,

Do you have a photo of the wagon? Too long or too deep?

Nigel



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 Posted: Sat Mar 16th, 2019 05:17 pm
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Hi Nigel

All sorted now.  A bit of trimming was all that was required.  First wagon successfully converted!  The socket on the loco had a small bit of  play which a small shim of plastic cured easily.  now to see if I can set up magnets on a test board before moving to the layout.

Michael



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 Posted: Sat Mar 16th, 2019 05:25 pm
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Bravo Michael. :pathead

It's extremely satisfying when you've struggled with something and finally succeeded.

Onward and upward !!!



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 Posted: Sun Mar 17th, 2019 12:20 am
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It certainly is Peter.  Thanks to all of the advice throughout the forum, it was a relatively painless experience.  I don't think I have anything new to add to what has been written previously, other than to say the guidance works.  I will say that using card between the different plastics has made a rock solid joint and was easy to adjust to the right height.

So I'm not expecting anything new with the magnets and will go with the proven methods.  I will just have a practice first!

Michael



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