Jump to content
irishthump

Graham's Workbench

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

I decided to fit some taillights to my home-made Dutch generator van.

Here's the result...

 

S5000606.jpg

 

 

 

I think I may have mounted them a little high, but anyway...

 

The lights are DCC controlled and I attached pickups on all four wheels to reduce flickering. The pickups are from DCC supplies and are very easy to fit.

 

S5000626.jpg

 

Testing, testing....

 

S5000623.jpg

 

I had some trouble with the Hornby decoders I used in this van and the brake vans I fitted lights to. If there was any sort of break in the current the functions would switch off and have to be turned back on again (this does'nt happen with my other decoders, if you activate the lights and take the loco off the rails when you replace it back on the track whatever function lights you had activated would come back on.) I expected some flickering since I use insulfrog points but the lights going out was just plain annoying!

I got around the problem by wiring the lights to the motor output wires on the decoder.

S5000622.jpg

S5000622.jpg

Edited by irishthump

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I decided to switch to Kadees on my layout a while back but have only just got round to buying in the couplers and uncoupler magnets.

I fitted the under-track magnets on the layout during the week and tested them with all of my locos, so far so good!

 

As I have a lot of older wagons and coaches (Lima, Hornby and Triang) I have to convert these to take the couplers.

Here are my first attempts....

 

My first victim was a Lima parcel van. My coaches have the same bogies so it was a good place to start.

kadee003.jpg

 

I cut away the old coupler with a razor saw and filed the area flat.

kadee005.jpg

 

I was very lucky with this one; I just glued in an NEM pocket from a Bachmann coupler and this just happens to sit at the right height.

NEM pocket:

kadee007.jpg

 

I used epoxy to get a good joint, clamped it up and let it go off.

kadee008.jpg

 

After the glue set a quick check with my Kadee gauge...

kadee016.jpg

 

Looks OK to me!

 

This Hornby tank wagon was a little more difficult. As you guys know the tension hook is attached with a small rivet. I drilled this out ....

kadee010.jpg

 

Then tried the NEM pocket but found it sat way too low.

kadee011.jpg

 

I simply measured how far it was protruding, removed the same amount from the fixing post on the bottom of the wagon then glued on the NEM pocket.

kadee015.jpg

 

Once again tested with the height gauge; looks fine.

kadee012.jpg

 

All the Kadees are no.20s and while I know it would probably have been better to fit couplers with gear boxes and springs these seem to handle the curves on my layout without any problems. Tightest curves on my layout are 2nd radius.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking good mate I would suggest using the Kadee's with the draft gear box on coaches/wagons or anything fitted with bogies and mounting the Kadee gear box to the chassis and not the bogie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cheers, Anto.

 

Any particular reason why that method is better? I know American HO modellers fit them pretty much exclusively to the wagon bodies....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Cheers, Anto.

 

Any particular reason why that method is better? I know American HO modellers fit them pretty much exclusively to the wagon bodies....

 

I would also say that cutting out part of the headstock or buffer beam and fixing the box of the coupler to the chassis would be a better option as has been stated. For a start it will look more prototypical as some coaches were fitted with drawhooks and buckeye couplers. Coaches at the ends of a rake have a drawhook and drop head buckeye like this

 

 

 

and this

 

 

 

Cut out a piece of the headstock the same width as the coupler box and fit the box in the gap you have cut out. You may have to put some packing between the floor of the coach and the coupler box to get it to sit flush.

 

Rich,

DSC00039.JPG

march2007_097.jpg

DSC00039.JPG

march2007_097.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the feedback and info, lads.

 

I think I'll try what you're suggesting, but at the moment I only have the NEM couplers. Would no. 5's be the best bet for mounting on the body?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your model train as we all know is like the real thing in miniature. When you attach the kadee coupling to the bogies the coaches bogies are been pulled in opposite directions buy the weight of the train. This can lead to derailments and bad running when using kadees. When you fit them to the body this acts like the real train and the pulling forces are absorbed by the body/chassis this leaves your bogies free to just do their job. I would stay well clear of kadee #5 for coaches as they are far to short try something like a #146

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Your model train as we all know is like the real thing in miniature. When you attach the kadee coupling to the bogies the coaches bogies are been pulled in opposite directions buy the weight of the train. This can lead to derailments and bad running when using kadees. When you fit them to the body this acts like the real train and the pulling forces are absorbed by the body/chassis this leaves your bogies free to just do their job. I would stay well clear of kadee #5 for coaches as they are far to short try something like a #146

 

Cheers, Anto. #146's it is!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had recently started repainting my own rake of MK3's into Supertrain livery in anticipation of the arrival of the 071's....

 

I had picked these up on Ebay a while back. They cost me next to nothing and when I got them I could see why! These are the older Hornby MK3's, the windows and glazing are a single strip which would be a nightmare to repaint....

 

Mark3007.jpg

 

I tried to mask the glazing with tape and cut around the window frames with a scalpel but this did'nt work. So I made small masking pieces from

thin sheet styrene and fixed these over the windows before spraying with black primer.

 

Did'nt work out TOO bad! A bit of overspray worked it's way under the masks, but since the end result would be weathered I could live with it.

 

Mark3013.jpg

 

The bodies after several thin coats of orange...

I used an aerosol can of acrylic which I stumbled across in the local Art and Hobby shop. Although I have an airbrush I chose the spray can out of

pure laziness!

 

Mark3009.jpg

 

Once again my masking let me down a little, so a fair bit of touching in was required.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's one coach after reassembly...

 

009.jpg

 

I had planned to paint the window frames but instead I just filed across the raised detail with a fine emory board which highlited the frames

surprisingly well in a grey colour so I may not bother.

The overspray on the glazing is annoying but since I'll be weathering these I don't think it's a huge issue, it resembles a good healthy coat of grime!

 

Here's the full rake so far...

I think the orange is a tad bright for Supertrain but I'm happy enough with it.

 

007-1.jpg

 

Plenty more to do, I'm waiting for an order of transfers from Railtec and a few other details like the gangway doors need to be done. I'm also going to replace the old wheels as they are causing a few headaches on the insulfrog points.

I also have a buffet car left to do and I saved the worst of the coaches for conversion to an EGV.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like your Scenic Rust results, looks the part. As for your Supertrain again a very pleasing result. I have never used the Hornby always Lima Mk 3's and I am tempted to do a rake of carriages, if I had the room to store them. Well done on your project.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice work on the 'Super train' Mk3s, will look very tasty with the new 071s hauling them:tumbsup: Is it much of a job to kit them out with the Kadee couplers? Bit of a novice when it comes to these. All I know about them is that they look heaps better than the standard tension lock couplers. Nice work. Tom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nice work on the 'Super train' Mk3s, will look very tasty with the new 071s hauling them:tumbsup: Is it much of a job to kit them out with the Kadee couplers? Bit of a novice when it comes to these. All I know about them is that they look heaps better than the standard tension lock couplers. Nice work. Tom

 

Tom it's all about doing research and looking through threads about the subject online, that's the most important part. Kadees are sold with draft boxes where you can fit the whole unit to the chassis of your chosen piece of stock. You need to cut a small piece of the headstock from the item of rolling stock and get a Kadee height gauge to judge the height the draft box and coupler need to be set at. In some cases this may involve using some plasticard spacers fitted to the floor of the chassis to achieve the correct height.

 

Couplers are also available to fit directly into the NEM pockets on the rolling stock and come in several sizes and numbers. Lots of the lads use them on their coaching stock on here to great effect and will be more than happy to assist if you ask, that's why we're here.

 

MK11 and MK111 rakes are usually permanent and semi fixed rakes on the prototype with the outer coach ends fitted with drop eye couplers lowered to enable the loco to be hooked to either end (a Generator Van or a passenger coach) depending on direction of travel via the screw link coupling on the rolling stock or loco. The other coaches and the inner ends of the outer coaches are permanently fixed with buckeye couplers. It really isn't that difficult to use this system once you are shown how by an existing user of the process. Some lads fit the buckeyes to locos permanently to enable run around sequences on their layouts without having to physically uncouple the rolling stock and at the same time fit as much of the skirts and pipes on the loco as they can and it looks great when it is done. Anthony has done a lot of this kind of conversion on his stock and it looks and works great. Anthony always posts these kind of conversions in his work bench thread and always gives great and friendly advice when asked. My advice would be to have a good look at his workbench thread as all the info you would require is there in photos and writing.

 

Rich,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, Tom.

 

Rich's response there really sums it up, Anto is the resident authority on Kadees and there is also a wealth of info on other forums regarding fitting them to your stock.

 

Rich also describes fitting the Kadees to the underside of the coach as opposed to the bogie which is the norm with US/HO stock. This is also prototypical and the way the couplers themselves are designed to operate.

I initially tried this but found I had nothing but problems when traversing curves on the layout. I found through other forums that the majority of UK/OO modellers opt to fit them to the bogies so I tried this method and found my problems disappeared! Whether is was a problem with my fitting methods or the amount of tight curves on my layout I just don't know, but I had to go with what worked best for me.

 

You can see in the pic below that fitting them to the Lima MK3's was simply a matter of removing the tension-lock hook and attaching the Kadee no.5 directly to the top of the bogie. The coupler height gauge that Kadee supply is absolutley essential for the getting the coupler to sit at the correct height, and by pure fluke the Kadee happened to sit at just the right level.

 

kadee.jpg

kadee.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HI Guys,

Kadee's :tumbsup: Tension Lock :(

Don't forget that Bachmann also do their own version of the Kadee to fit in NEM boxes or onto the floors of older stock.. Although, apparently not freely available in Europe, they can easily be got on e-bay from a company called 'The Favorite Spot' in Texas, who are completly reliable. The Bachmann part number is # 78035 and they only do one shaft length, equivalent to the longest Kadee shaft length I think (Must send for some Kadee NEM's and compare). They come in cards of 12 pairs, the Buyitnow price is around $US16 approx

Euro 12.5 / GBP 10.00 but they also have 2-day auctions starting at $US0.01 and which can get up to anything from $US8 - $US12.

They have a system wherby you can accumulate e-bay purchases for about 10 days before you pay for them. I usually work on getting about 4 cards (48 pairs) at a time, 2 at auction price and 2 at BIN price. Of course, you've got to factor postage into the equation to see If the savings over Kadee's are worthwhile.

 

If you don't want to use the Kadee 'hands-off' shunting/switching feature (I and many On30 NGers don't, our railways are 'hands-on' rather than 'hands-off') you can improve the looks even better by snipping off the glad-hands/trip pins.

Cheers,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gentlemen,

some excellent advice there regarding the Kadee couplers, very much appreciated thanks. It's good to get some first hand accounts of how these things work. Have done a little Google research on the subject. Unfortunately alot relates to American stock. Body mounting the couplers as opposed to boggie mounting. They don't have much trouble negotiating bends because EVERYTHING is bigger in the States/Canada... including their model railways!!! Some great info guys, hope to put it to use in the near future. But first there's a layout that needs building!

Tom.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lads, it would be brilliant if we could compile a few 'How to fit kadee' Guides or pics on Irish stuff!

 

I know the 141,181,201,071 locos all have NEM sockets, as do the MK2s and recent stuff, but the MKIIIs and other items would be very useful!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
.....some excellent advice there regarding the Kadee couplers, very much appreciated thanks. It's good to get some first hand accounts of how these things work. Have done a little Google research on the subject. Unfortunately a lot relates to American stock. Body mounting the couplers as opposed to boggie mounting. They don't have much trouble negotiating bends because EVERYTHING is bigger in the States/Canada....

 

Unlike British and Irish stock, US / Canadian stock has no buffers - all buffing and coupling forces are directed through the buckeye / knuckle couplings themselves, and there is no "buffer locking" on tight curves.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can see in the pic below that fitting them to the Lima MK3's was simply a matter of removing the tension-lock hook and attaching the Kadee no.5 directly to the top of the bogie. The coupler height gauge that Kadee supply is absolutley essential for the getting the coupler to sit at the correct height, and by pure fluke the Kadee happened to sit at just the right level.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]3023[/ATTACH]

 

 

 

 

When fitting kadee's to Lima mk3's the #5 has to small a shank. I have found the the long shank kadees work best on the mk3's. Of the top of my head I think I used a kadee whisker coupler #146. You attach this to the chassis and not the bogie and it should work OK on tight curves. On another note regarding my UK stock I've started to fit a piece of wire to the locos as a coupler as the UK locos have a lot of detail parts on them and I hate detailing just one end and not the other. If a loco has the like's of snow ploughs supplied I want to see them fitted. If I get time tomorrow I post up a picture of my new Heljan WCR class 33 with the new coupler fitted.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Guys,

A bit on fitting Kadee's to 4whl stock.

With modern stock fitted with NEM pockets it "should" be easy-squezy. It generally is with Bachmann and Dapol which are mostly at approx the correct height. But Hornby are all over the place. In some cases the Hornby mounting heights are so far out, that it's easier to remove all trace of the NEM mounting and treat them as you would an older model without NEM pockets.

Fitting Kadee's to older 4whl stock

There are variations, of course, but in most cases If you remove all trace of the tension lock coupler and its mounts you end up with a flat floor on which you can just glue a # 5 in its original draft-gear box(# 232) or in the newer # 242 snap-on draft gear boxes which work with whisker or original type couplers, both Kadee or Bachmann. Most times this works out to be pretty close and you can make it a bit lower by inserting shims cut from .10 or .20 thou plasticard between the draft gear box and the floor.

In some cases you need to overcome a fairly big variation in height either HIGHER or LOWER.

You can do this with a bit of experimentation with the range of offset couplers that both Kadee and Bachmann produce. These come in 3 different shaft lengths Long, Medium and Short and with the coupler head mounted in the Centre of the shaft, on the Top or on the Bottom. With the various combinations available, with experimentation you should be able to mount Kadee's on any and all 4-wheelers.

 

But, DON't fall into the trap of just glueing a Kadee coupler onto the floor or whatever, it WON'T WORK. Kadees MUST have a certain amount of side-to-side play to work, which is why you use the draft gear boxes to mount them.

 

Two Pain in the Bums with Kadee's. Biggest is the TINY springs on the end of the coupler heads. Unless you have excellent (ie young) eyesight thay are a real swine to replace. If you use the newish # 242 Draft gear boxes you can snap the box off and replace the coupler with a spare. Saving the couplers which need occupying themselves for a day when you are in a good, placid mood, the kids and SWMBO are out, and you can sit down in a GOOD light and swear to your hearts content :ROFL:

 

Second is that unless you've got the height of the couplers on adjacent vehicles VERY close to perfect when you start to go up or come down a slope they will uncouple sure as eggs is eggs :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
When fitting kadee's to Lima mk3's the #5 has to small a shank. I have found the the long shank kadees work best on the mk3's. Of the top of my head I think I used a kadee whisker coupler #146. You attach this to the chassis and not the bogie and it should work OK on tight curves.

 

I remember you advising me to get the #146 which I did but it sits too high when fixed to the floor of the coach. I got the offset version; #149 but it still required packing with very thin styrene to get it at the right height. But like I said it just would'nt behave itself on curves! When hauling coaches it was ok but shunting was a nightmare, especially when using delayed uncoupling.

Coupling was iffy too as due to space my sides have long curves. As you know if you're not dead straight when trying to couple body-mounted Kadees they just won't work. You can get away with this when they are bogie mounted.

I will have another go body mounting them again soon but I think I will need to buy a large selection of the different couplers and spend some time experimenting. As I wanted to get my stock up and running I decided to go with the "quick fix" and bogie mount them, which works great!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@ FrankS,

 

The Bachmann NEM pockets can be hit and miss too. I find the 141's pocket sits just a shade low so you have to either stick a sliver of thin styrene under the coupler shank or bend it slightly to get it to align. The same with my Class 25 too.

 

Don't even talk to me about those little springs! Thank god they give you spares with the couplers... I find a few always fall out when they are sent through the post.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well the MK3's are almost finished. Applied the transfers (from Railtec) all that's left is to paint the gangways, which to be honest I had forgotten!

 

DSC_0030.jpg

 

DSC_0029.jpg

 

Oh yes, and fit replacement buffers!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×

Important Information

Terms of Use