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Kingsbridge - Kadee + coupling conversions

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Noel
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31 minutes ago, Georgeconna said:

Not Great on Slighty slight curves from my own recent testing which is a PITH as most of my sidings / bays are curved out of necessity.

What do you use to dampen the Magnetic attraction of the wheel sets  to the track magnet.I find some of my stock shoot towards the Magnet and make uncoupling impossible without a bit of sponge on top of the axle. 

Good vids Noel in all fariness. Theshunting is pretty infectious too!

 

Cheers George. Most of my station track is on gentle bends, very little straight track except in the main terminus. The 20yo bachmann wagons I have used so far haven't been a problem shooting forwards perhaps because the older axles were not as free nor finely balanced as more modern stock. The IRM ballasts and bubbles shunt very well. Naturally the new 42ft container flats do not have this problem due to their weight and modern era stock doesn't get shunted anyway (ie fixed rake formations). Shunting seems very much a 2 axle wagon past time with stock from 1930s to about 1974 after which the railways as we knew them became rather boring (ie uniform fixed rake passenger and goods formations). I'm building a new shunting layout that is lineear 10ft long by 2ft and exclusively for shunting using kadee's

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8 hours ago, Georgeconna said:

Nice one, New Layout for Exhibitions Noel?

 

 

Hi George, not really, I don’t do exhibitions, so more for home use, but may lend it to club colleagues if they’d like to operate it at exhibitions. Anyway I don’t have a beard so not qualified to exhibit :)  

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1 hour ago, David Holman said:

Two ways to avoid magnets attracting wagons. First change to non-magnetic wheels/axles. I use 2mm brass wire for axles on Fintonagh, with Kadees. Second, consider using servos with under baseboard magnets, so that they can be lowered out of the way when not used.

Personally, I found this to be too much of a hassle to sort out so I switched to the "between track" Kadee magnets. They work great if you can get over the look of them.

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  • 4 months later...

This has been an informative thread. Is it an ongoing issue that NEM pockets for Irish stock are not at the correct height/depth according to the standard?

I note that Kadee explicitly state that they do not make offset NEM couplings because the pocket height above the rail should be uniform.

Personally I would be prepared to sacrifice fidelity (the coupling itself is never going to be a true representation of the prototype) for interoperability without having to shim rolling stock etc.

I'd be interested to hear what IRM's policy on NEM pocket standard will be in the future.

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9 minutes ago, murphaph said:

This has been an informative thread. Is it an ongoing issue that NEM pockets for Irish stock are not at the correct height/depth according to the standard?

I note that Kadee explicitly state that they do not make offset NEM couplings because the pocket height above the rail should be uniform.

Personally I would be prepared to sacrifice fidelity (the coupling itself is never going to be a true representation of the prototype) for interoperability without having to shim rolling stock etc.

I'd be interested to hear what IRM's policy on NEM pocket standard will be in the future.

Hi Murphaph,

All our A Class, Taras, spoils, container liners, ferts, weedspray, kegs and ferts have the NEM pockets at the correct recommended height. Exception was made height wise for the bubbles, ballast and plough vans (but still featured an NEM pocket) due to detail obstruction reasons we went into when we launched these wagons. This also applies on all our Accurascale models, and we take great care to ensure these standards are adhered to.

Thanks,

Fran

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Thanks a lot for the prompt clarification Fran. That answer obviously pleases me 🙂

I missed the ballasts first time round but I know you've hinted at a second run perhaps late this year. I am assuming they will be identical to the first run, including pocket height?

I will still definitely buy 2 rakes and a second set of ploughs regardless of pocket height but great to hear that just those 3 earlier models deviate from the standard (and I accept you had your reasons there). I got my first ploughs on Monday and I'm astounded how finely detailed they are! Just waiting for the hoppers!

All the best,

Phil

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31 minutes ago, murphaph said:

Thanks a lot for the prompt clarification Fran. That answer obviously pleases me 🙂

I missed the ballasts first time round but I know you've hinted at a second run perhaps late this year. I am assuming they will be identical to the first run, including pocket height?

I will still definitely buy 2 rakes and a second set of ploughs regardless of pocket height but great to hear that just those 3 earlier models deviate from the standard (and I accept you had your reasons there). I got my first ploughs on Monday and I'm astounded how finely detailed they are! Just waiting for the hoppers!

All the best,

Phil

Hi Phil,

Many thanks for the order! The models will be unchanged, correct.

Cheers!

Fran

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On 7/29/2020 at 12:52 PM, murphaph said:

Thanks a lot for the prompt clarification Fran. That answer obviously pleases me 🙂

I missed the ballasts first time round but I know you've hinted at a second run perhaps late this year. I am assuming they will be identical to the first run, including pocket height?

I will still definitely buy 2 rakes and a second set of ploughs regardless of pocket height but great to hear that just those 3 earlier models deviate from the standard (and I accept you had your reasons there). I got my first ploughs on Monday and I'm astounded how finely detailed they are! Just waiting for the hoppers!

All the best,

Phil

The Ballasts and Bubbles NEM pocket problem was easily solved as per IRMs own recommended fix, just superglue the kadee tongs to the underside of the NEM pocket for correct height as per Kadee height gauge.There was a valid argument for just plugging into the NEM pockets and correct only the two end wagons on a rake, but I like to be abe to mix'n'manch stock and prefer all stock to be able to couple up together. The Tara's, Fertilsers and 42ft flats had perfect NEM pocket positioning. No 18's seem to work well with IRMs entire wagon portfolio.

Kadee18_IRM_ballast_01.jpg

As an aside, in advance of some scenic work, just recently started clearing the layout of rolling stock and put all my IRM models back in their boxes, almost drooling at the fabulous underside detail one normally doesn't see while running or on the tracks. I decided that whenever the beautiful ballasts come back out of their boxes they will get some gentle weathering treatment. Also discovered I still had 3 boxes of pristine bubbles which I kind of like that they avoided the weathering station. Just gorgeous wagons. Thank you again IRM.

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That's a good point about having some pristine examples. I think I will spare at least one of each of my IRM models from the weathering station and put them all together in a glass display case at eye level.

As for the Kadee conversion...

I will also want most of my wagons on Kadees though I have seen the idea of small fixed mini rakes (the McKinley Railway uses the idea of "triplets" which are permanently coupled rakes of three small wagons with couplers on the outer ends. I can't remember if they use Kadees for the outer couplers but that isn't relevant).

I think this fixed triplet idea has merit for things like the cement bubbles and ballasts. It's cheaper and easier.

I want to try an alternative solution to the ballasts (when I get some) and bubbles. I think it may be possible to glue a second NEM pocket to the underside of the existing pocket. The height deviation from the standard is 2.1mm I believe so this may work. The advantage would be that the pocket (in fact either pocket!) could be used as intended with different couplers, should one ever lend stock to someone else who doesn't use Kadees.

It will depend on how thin walled I can source replacement pockets.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 6 months later...

Hi Noel, great thread and thanks for blazing the trail. I have started to convert my stock and your tips have been my bible. Have you put Kadee's on MM 121 yet? The NEM box seems to be bigger and the Kadee #20 I tried on it drooped. It is very loose..... 

Ken

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1 hour ago, Ken K said:

Hi Noel, great thread and thanks for blazing the trail. I have started to convert my stock and your tips have been my bible. Have you put Kadee's on MM 121 yet? The NEM box seems to be bigger and the Kadee #20 I tried on it drooped. It is very loose..... 

Ken

Yes your are quite correct the NEM pocket on the MM 121 is oversized (ie not NEM compliant), so couplings droop. I sorted that by cutting a small thin strip of plastic card to act as a filler shim which I dry fitted under the shank of kadee no 19 which then leave the coupling at the correct height (ie as per the kadee height gauge), so the trip pin did not foul points cross blades. The NEM pocket is at the correct height, just oversized vertically, an easy fix, took a few mins. But handle that loco with extreme care, there are so many delicate parts on it they can easily come off when handling it for stuff like this. 

IMG_7766.JPG

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  • 10 months later...
  • 2 months later...

Super thread noel. 

 

was about to start a thread about all the coupling woes i am having at present but said i would quickly ask here before going down a rabbit hole.

 

the modern tension lock couplings do not suit my layout at all, far too often i am trying to couple up to my set rake lenghts and BAM the train is on a corner and it just wont work without manual intervention.(and if the hooks are on the wrong side of one another its a real hassle that potentially causes derails on opposing bends.)

 

its not an issue on straight track and i dont think it was an issue 20 years ago on those big oversized hook and loop TLC's. never mind that, i DONT want to go back to those things in a million years. its 2022 now.

 

if i fit the kadees do they work well on bends?  when im referring to bends i merely mean a second radius track coming off a point to straighten the siding back out. so the train has to run through an "S" shape before it can touch a wagon.. seeing how much closer they bring the wagons too is also a big plus for me.

 

finally,  can the kadee be somehow wired into the DCC chip for remote uncoupling? I would much prefer this to having like 4/5 decoupling ramps littered around like my current plan calls for.

 

cheers.

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3 hours ago, Sean said:

finally,  can the kadee be somehow wired into the DCC chip for remote uncoupling? I would much prefer this to having like 4/5 decoupling ramps littered around like my current plan calls for.

They are much simpler or perhaps should I say more sophisticated than that. They uncouple magnetically, via a magnet under the track bed.  Reversing the stock over this magnet opens the couplings, you can then  change the direction of the loco and leave the stock behind. I think Noel has posted extensively on this subject and has included a video.

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On 16/3/2022 at 8:12 PM, Sean said:

 

if i fit the kadees do they work well on bends?  when im referring to bends i merely mean a second radius track coming off a point to straighten the siding back out. so the train has to run through an "S" shape before it can touch a wagon.. seeing how much closer they bring the wagons too is also a big plus for me.

 

Kadees are not designed to work on curves. Having said that, if the couplers are mounted on the bogies of both pieces of rolling stock they may work, but it will be hit and miss.

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All couplings are a compromise, but Kadee are as close to buckeye type as you could want. They do require careful setting up to work properly on a shunting layout though and while the couplings themselves are really neat, the uncoupling magnets can be intrusive visually. I use pairs of rare earth magnets on Fintonagh, set vertically 5mm apart in the track. This works well in terms of uncoupling, but being only 3mm diameter means a very small area in which they work.

 Tension locks work, but are horrible to look at - especially on the stunning rtr models we have now. Worst of all though is the sight of those enormous N gauge couplings on the smaller locos - almost half the length of a Terrier or 03 diesel. Thank goodness the 2mm FS folk have decided better alternatives.

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33 minutes ago, Mike 84C said:

David,an chance of a drawing/sketch to show the orientation of your under track magnets? I have a picture in my head and would like to know if it lines up with reality!

Another problem with REMs is they can be so strong they pull on wagon axles causing a snatch or bounce motion.  The under track kadee magnets work well, even the between the rails kadee flat magnets can be disguise to look like part of a walkway.

 

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On 24/3/2022 at 10:31 AM, Noel said:

Another problem with REMs is they can be so strong they pull on wagon axles causing a snatch or bounce motion.  The under track kadee magnets work well, even the between the rails kadee flat magnets can be disguise to look like part of a walkway.

 

I don't use neodymium magnets for the same reason but I've also had issues with the Kadee undertrack magnets attracting metal axles. There's a couple of things you can do to prevent this: 1) Try sourcing non-magnetic wheelsets. Pretty near impossible for OO gauge stock. 2) Causing some "drag" on the axles by attaching a brass strip to the underside of the wagon/coach to apply a tiny amount of friction to the axle. This works but doing this with every piece of rolling stock just isn't practical. But it might be an option for a small shunting layout.

My solution was to switch to the between-the-rails magnets. They work fine and the visual impact is minimal.

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16 minutes ago, irishthump said:

I don't use neodymium magnets for the same reason but I've also had issues with the Kadee undertrack magnets attracting metal axles. There's a couple of things you can do to prevent this: 1) Try sourcing non-magnetic wheelsets. Pretty near impossible for OO gauge stock. 2) Causing some "drag" on the axles by attaching a brass strip to the underside of the wagon/coach to apply a tiny amount of friction to the axle. This works but doing this with every piece of rolling stock just isn't practical. But it might be an option for a small shunting layout.

My solution was to switch to the between-the-rails magnets. They work fine and the visual impact is minimal.

Yip and weighting wagons close to NMRA standards greatly helps shunting operations and magnetic uncoupling use.

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3 minutes ago, Noel said:

Yip and weighting wagons close to NMRA standards greatly helps shunting operations and magnetic uncoupling use.

To be honest I did'nt find increasing the weight of the wagons made any difference regarding the magnetic axle problem, it the fact they rolled freely that caused the issue. But I fully agree increasing the weight leads to superior running in general.

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Thanks for your thoughts guys, you and I have both been down the same road!  I used a piece of foam under the wagon to add resistance but it seems daft to make wagons free rolling and then have to give them resistance to lessen the magnetic attraction!  Substituting brass axles for steel on 40/50 wagons and coaches does not appeal.

Noel, weight do you ballast your 4 wheel wagons to please?

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10 hours ago, Mike 84C said:

Thanks for your thoughts guys, you and I have both been down the same road!  I used a piece of foam under the wagon to add resistance but it seems daft to make wagons free rolling and then have to give them resistance to lessen the magnetic attraction!  Substituting brass axles for steel on 40/50 wagons and coaches does not appeal.

Noel, weight do you ballast your 4 wheel wagons to please?

The NMRA specifies 1 ounce plus 1/2 ounce for every inch of length of the wagon/coach

If you prefer metric then here is a handy calculator. Just use HO when selecting the scale.

https://showmyhobby.com/index.php/henrys-nmra-rolling-stock-car-scale-weight-calculator/

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