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Kingsbridge - Coupling replacement




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#1 NoelG

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 21:54

I have successfully replaced the TLC (tension lock couplings) on two rakes of MM mk2 coaches.  The first rake was done with kadee and the second rake with Hornby R8220 close couplings between the coaches but a single kadee at each end of the rake for coupling to locos and better visual appearance.  This works with fixed rake formations.

 

 

fitting_kadee_mm_mk2d_01.jpg

 

Height is perfect when the kadee no 19 or 20 are glued to the underside of the NEM pocket rather than in the pocket.

IMG_5536.jpg

 

The Hornby R8220s (below) were fairly easy to fit once the TLCs were easily removed from the mk2's using the scalpel to trim the ends as in the first photo above. The last coach at each end of the rake had a kadee no 19 glued to the underside of the NEM pocket for coupling to locos.  Spent a while doing running trials with the close couplers with reasonable results so far except for one coach which occasionally suffers a lock of the NEM coupling plate causing a derailment. I should be able to tweak that tomorrow in daylight when I can see watch is catching on the chassis. 

IMG_5532.jpg

 

Comparison below of Hornby R8220 close couplers and the kadee's below.  The orange roof rake have kadee's and the black roof have the Hornby R8220 close couplers.  When stationary both types offer identical close coupling qualities, however once running a small gap will open up with the kadees, but nowhere near as big a gap as the standard TLCs that come with MM coaches. The Hornby R8220 close couplers keep the gap closed except on curves when the gap between the coaches opens up proportionally with the radius of the curve which avoids buffer lock and derailment.

IMG_5534.jpg

 

Stock coupled with either the kadee or R8220 can be lifted vertically out of a rake unlike TLCs (tension lock couplings), the kadees  are the easiest to uncouple and lift out.

 

PS: NEM 362 pockets as a standard seem a joke. None of the coaching or wagon rolling stock I have bought from any Irish vendors have the pockets at the correct height and in some cases not even the correct horizontal position relative to the buffers and in one case the NEM pockets were not even the correct length. Same problem seems to apply to many British outline stock.


Edited by NoelG, 16 April 2018 - 09:06 .

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#2 pat141

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 22:15

They look very close which looks much better.

The original couplings should just pull out or squeeze the ends in with tweezers and pull. 



#3 NoelG

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Posted 14 April 2018 - 22:20

They look very close which looks much better.

The original couplings should just pull out or squeeze the ends in with tweezers and pull. 

 

Hi Pat.  Thanks, however as supplied the original couplings will NOT just pull out because the nipples at ends of the tongs are too wide to fit through the NEM pocket. However once a scalpel is used to just trim the smallest amount of plastic off the nipples in place they will then pull out as you describe when ends squeezed with a tweezers. Without this trimming extreme brute force is needed risking damage to the coach which unfortunately happened to some folk. Noel


Edited by NoelG, 14 April 2018 - 22:25 .


#4 NoelG

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Posted 15 April 2018 - 21:09

A solution to Craven Kadee height problem.

 

I tried all manner of Kadee's this evening, long, short, medium, underset, overset, centerset shanks, etc, even No 5's but in the end the simplest solution proved the best. A home made adapter using no 17s.

 

Glue shortened Kadee no 17s to a DIY plasticard NEM shaft (12mm x 3mm). First remove the nibbles from the end of the tongs (i.e. shorten the no 17 by 2mm). Then plug this adapter into the existing Craven NEM pocket. Option to fit using friction only, or small screw through the NEM pocket to secure. 

 

 

fitting_kadee_mm_craven_01.jpg


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#5 NoelG

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Posted 16 April 2018 - 08:46

Craven Kadee conversion continues. Photos below of stock being tested for vertical alignment, spacing, and running trails both pull and push around curves and over points. Kadee on Craven below is now lining up correctly with MM 141 loco (no 19 on loco, with DIY adapter and no 17 under coach).

 

IMG_5554.jpg

 

The two white plastic adapters are clearly visible. These will get a coat of sleeper grime once further running trials have completed.

IMG_5555.jpg

 

Closer than with the standard TLCs.  I didn't want to use Hornby/Roco close couplers on the Cravens because they will be frequently marshalled and shunted into varying coach formations containing Park Royals, Laminates, Bredins, and all manner of vans such as GSVs, TPO, HLV, etc. 

IMG_5556.jpg

 

PS: @jhb171achillI hope the 'men in black' pics above will go someway toward exonerating me from my temporary encounter with the modernity of mk2 oranges and 'yellow fever'. smile.png


Edited by NoelG, 16 April 2018 - 09:07 .

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#6 NoelG

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Posted 20 April 2018 - 21:20

IRM Ballasts before and after conversion to Kadee No 18s plugged into NEM pockets - gap greatly reduced enhancing the look of a rake. NEM pocket a little high but the kadee's work perfectly within a fixed rake of IRM ballasts or IRM cement wagons and actually 50% overlap the correct height for coupling up to an MM 141 or 071 loco. If I encounter any running issues I may adjust the height of the coupling in the end wagons of each rake for 100% loco height match. Overall though it looks like an easy conversion for my IRM ballast and cement wagons.

 

Kadee18_IRM_ballast.jpg&key=f182011154db

 

20ft Skeletal flat wagons before and after conversion to Kadee No 18s plugged into NEM pockets- NEM pocket height spot on

Kadee18_IFM_20ft_flats.jpg&key=35c579fa9



#7 NoelG

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Posted 20 April 2018 - 21:24

OK change of mind. I've decided I'm not happy to compromise on the kadee height on the Ballasts I converted earlier. Aside from the trip pins being too high for magnets to operate uncoupling, visually the coupler in the NEM pockets are almost the same height as the buffers which visually clutters these lovely models and doesn't look right. I have now followed IRMs advice and glued the kadee no 18 under the NEM pockets.  This is much closer to the correct Kadee height gauge.

 

IRM Ballasts after conversion to Kadee No 18s GLUED UNDER the NEM pockets - gap greatly reduced enhancing the look of a rake. Coupling now matches loco heights and other stock on the layout which will facilitate shunting and marshalling. It took a while but I saw the light. I did some running tests today and this coupling distance runs runs perfectly on the layout including on the few short radius Peco streamline points I have. Also tested ok on some spare 2nd radius curves.  Happy days.

IMG_5684.jpg&key=603afc38eff413e93fd1239

 

Shows no 18s glued to underside of the NEM pockets. You will need to file off the thin IRM logo on one of the NEM pockets. Matches loco perfectly now so no risk of uncoupling at changes of gradients, or when coupled to other rolling stock.

Kadee18_IRM_ballast_01.jpg&key=cb9082989

 

Comparison between using the NEM pockets or IRMs recommended fix of gluing the kadee's to the underside of the NEM pocket.

Kadee18_IRM_ballast_02.jpg&key=2d803a8f6

 

This visually looks much better as the coupling is below buffer height.

IMG_5680.jpg&key=1980f94bab45b256a3ddfbd

 

I'll have to weather all the newly installed kadee's now! smile.png

IMG_5681.jpg&key=0448d4f551753a771b33502

 

It really is worth the time to iteratively trail and error Kadee conversions especially extensive running tests on shortest radius curves on the layout, and with other rolling stock both being hauled and pushed. Will do the same fix with the IRM cement wagons and the ploughs in due course. I understand the Tara's have the NEM pocket at the correct height. 

PS: Kadee no 17s would only work on vary large radius track and only if also glued under the NEM pockets because they cannot plug into the NEM pocket without removing the lovely cosmetic coupling hook.



#8 NoelG

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Posted 22 April 2018 - 07:48

Close enough. 20yo Bachmann two axle wagons get the kadee treatment. No 148 whisker kadees in draft gearboxs (medium length centerset) have replaced the large old tension lock couplings. The plastic lugs and mounts for the old TLCs were cut off and filed flush with underside of chassis. 

 

IMG_5410.thumb.JPG.6a8915ac99b04907b6b61

 

Now closer coupled than before and they are less obtrusive than the old TLCs (tension lock couplings). Running trials successful across peco streamline code 100 short radius points.

IMG_5412.JPG.6f386cd5a6e07509664d1590472

 

The knuckle couplings are far less obtrusive than the 20yo TLCs 

IMG_5400.JPG.3ad60c7f1935346aba285e372a9

 

Kadee no 148 (medium centerset) screwed so it is flush with the buffer beam (i.e. avoids unsightly protruding gearbox)

IMG_5401.thumb.JPG.2f288a3ba17ff7973b254

 

Cutaway old TLC mounting lugs and file flat

IMG_5404.thumb.JPG.e5177f5b722fbb75690d9

 

Ends of gearboxes flush with buffer beam keeps them hidden from view above wagons

IMG_5405.thumb.JPG.6bc339660204d4f82731d


Edited by NoelG, 22 April 2018 - 14:55 .

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#9 NoelG

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Posted 22 April 2018 - 18:21

MM 201 Kadee conversion.NEM pocket is a little too low on the 201 locos. Need to bend trip pin upwards to ensure it would not foul when passing over points. Running trials successfull after mod. MM 141 and 071 NEM pockets are at correct height and need no adjustment for Kadee's

Kadee19_MM_201.jpg

 

Above 201 knuckle coupling 65% overlaps with rolling stock (i.e. that is at the correct height). Kadee plier tool above for bending trip pins is a really useful tool.

 

Below - NEM pockets perfect height for Kadee's on Dapol chassis (corrugated single beat wagon).

IMG_5685.jpg


Edited by NoelG, 24 April 2018 - 08:39 .


#10 fletchj1

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Posted 22 April 2018 - 19:38

Kadees - the way to go.   That huge TLC has outlived its acceptance and should be phased out.

 

Next thing is to replace those plastic wheels on the Bachmann wagons with metal ones.


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#11 NoelG

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Posted 22 April 2018 - 19:45

Kadees - the way to go.   That huge TLC has outlived its acceptance and should be phased out.

 

Next thing is to replace those plastic wheels on the Bachmann wagons with metal ones.

 

 

That's in hand. Wheels ordered last week. :) 



#12 NoelG

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 21:21

Kadee production line continues as I convert more stock. Kadee no 17s with white NEM shank adapters for Cravens, no 18s for Irish Freight Models TPO + Bulleid HLV, no 147 for Silverfox mk1 GSV + Dutch GSV, no 148 for the Bachmann Wagons, no 18 for IFM Brake vans, and no 19 for 141/181 locos. This has been an interesting project and there is much more to do before all my stock is converted.

 

IMG_5726.jpg

 

Next up Park Royals, Laminates, Mk1 GSV (lima conversion), CIE Brake Parcels van (Bachmann conversion) . . . it never ends but isn't that part of the enjoyment. smile.png


Edited by NoelG, 24 April 2018 - 08:35 .

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#13 Mike 84C

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Posted 24 April 2018 - 22:47

Thanks for posting with all the photos and the various Kaydee numbers you have used on what. Given me a few ideas for converting some of my wagons, I need to get mine closer together and now I see its very possible. Keep postin!

      Mick


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#14 fletchj1

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Posted 25 April 2018 - 00:22

That Hornby R8220 coupler looks very like some Roco ones that came with an SNCF 2-car RGP set.   I found them quite hard to couple and uncouple and I will replace them with Kadee ones in due course.

 

Apart from those newer Hornby R8220 couplers what sort of coupler does Hornby now supply as standard on its models?.   The new R8220 one like or one like the Bachmann TLC one which is narrower than the monster TLC one Hornby still appears to use on its 'railroad' series?.   I think that dates from the days of train sets where there was a need for wide spacing to go round very tight radius curves.

 

I find the Keen Systems constant buffer clearance unit works well on coaches.

 

Jeremy.



#15 NoelG

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Posted 25 April 2018 - 14:48

CIE BSK GSV 3185 + CIE Brake Parcel Van 2542 received the Kadee treatment.  The sprung Keen suspended gangways help the appearance, but I guess if I added the Keen system swivelling draw bar to some of my other stock everything could be this close coupled.  Bogie mounted couplings simply cannot facilitate close coupling. I get away with it below because the gangways are sprung.  The CIE Black'n'tan era never had uniform coach rakes, they were a mix of everything from Park Royals, Laminates, Bredin, Cravens, etc, and any manner of vans for parcels, heating, TPO, etc. So from a coupling point of view it is challenging to minimise gaps when some of the stock have kadee's mounted to bogies, others the coach body, and others the optimal mounted to a swivelling draw bar (e.g. like Bachmann and MM coaches).

 

IMG_5749.jpg

 

This 'tool' has been invaluable while converting stock to kadee couplings. It comprises the kadee coupling height gauge mounted on a piece of ballasted track which has been easy to use on the workbench when sizing up potential positions of couplings on stock and bogies.  Easy to get down to eye level and it can be picked up.  I found it accelerated the time needed to choose which kadee would be the easiest fit for a piece of stock and the simplest way of fitting the coupling (e.g. test hold various kadee couplings with tweezers under stock for dry fit alignment testing). Also useful for stock to stock coupling tests on the bench before trying converted stock out on the layout.

 

IMG_5706.jpg


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#16 NoelG

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Posted 27 April 2018 - 12:11

More Kadee fettling and adjustments on coaching stock.

 

Reducing Kadee size from no 19 to no 17 in the NEM pockets of these two CIE vans (HLV+TPO) greatly reduced the gaps yet due shortish length still get around bends and across paintwork without fouling or buffer lock. Min radius curves are 3ft, most are 3'6" but surprisingly these also run over the few 'short' Peco points I have. The Park Royals will need more work as I adjust the bar on the commonwealth bogies as they don't have NEM pockets, nor do the laminates.

 

IMG_5776.jpg

 

Dapol and IFM (Irish Freight Models) are the only two suppliers whose NEM pockets were 100% correct on every single item of their rolling stock I converted. Only Murphy Model 141/181 and 071 locos had correctly positioned NEM pockets (height + buffer distance), they were incorrect on their coaching stock (i.e. CIE Cravens, IR/IR Cravens, Mk2d).  Haven't tried the Bachmann/MM Green RPSI Mk2a's yet nor the Bachmann/MM Mk2a coaches.



#17 NoelG

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 08:17

Video demonstrating uncoupling wagons using compact rare earth magnets.  The magnets are a fraction of the size of kadee's own magnets and are easy to install.  They are cylindrical 5mm diameter and 6mm long. A pair are required offset each side of the track centre line.  The magnets need to be almost need to be flush with the sleepers because they are so powerful they would pull the wagons upwards if they were flush with the top of the rail. Cost £2 for 20 magnets = 10 uncoupling points for 20p each.

 

 

https://www.ebay.co....paXcU6hNXdPOqZQ

 

They are so powerful one 5mm x 6mm magnet each side was enough and I had to recess them more than I'd expected to avoid the kadee trip pin being pulled downwards towards the magnet causing the other end of the wagon to lift off its axle. One of the things to bear in mind is if the magnets are not carefully placed could cause wagons to jerk (i.e. if the metal wagon axles and trip pins are too close to the magnet surface).

 

NMRA standards advise that typical 2 axle wagons should have a minimum weight of 50-70g which reduces unwanted movements and snatching. Most BR 4mm RTR rolling stock falls way below this weight.

 

https://www.nmra.org/beginner/weight


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#18 cctransuk

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 08:37

....  as supplied the original couplings will NOT just pull out because the nipples at ends of the tongs are too wide to fit through the NEM pocket.

 

How the heck did the couplings get fitted into the pockets in the first place, then?

 

Regards,

John Isherwood.



#19 NoelG

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 09:34

How the heck did the couplings get fitted into the pockets in the first place, then?

 

Regards,

John Isherwood.

 

 

Hi John. Once the oversized tong ends were forced into the pocket at the factory, the nibbles on the ends proved just too large to extract again in the opposite direction without either brute force or pairing a tiny bit off each nibble with a scalpel which then allowed them to be easily removed by hand without force. Using tweezers or micro needle nose pliers proved useless.  

 

I know two folk who caused severe damages to these particular type of coaches using tools in an attempt to remove them by brute force (i.e. MM mk2d coaches).  Some folk in desperation had even snipped off the supplied tension lock couplings using a cutting pliers when replacing with kadee's. In any event the NEM pockets are useless as they are not at the correct height, hence the gluing of the kadee's under the NEM pockets. Noel



#20 NoelG

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Posted 12 June 2018 - 21:48

Video demonstrating uncoupling wagons using compact rare earth magnets.  The magnets are a fraction of the size of kadee's own magnets and are easy to install.  They are cylindrical 5mm diameter and 6mm long. A pair are required offset each side of the track centre line.  The magnets need to be almost need to be flush with the sleepers because they are so powerful they would pull the wagons upwards if they were flush with the top of the rail. Cost £2 for 20 magnets = 10 uncoupling points for 20p each.

 

 

https://www.ebay.co....paXcU6hNXdPOqZQ

 

They are so powerful one 5mm x 6mm magnet each side was enough and I had to recess them more than I'd expected to avoid the kadee trip pin being pulled downwards towards the magnet causing the other end of the wagon to lift off its axle. One of the things to bear in mind is if the magnets are not carefully placed could cause wagons to jerk (i.e. if the metal wagon axles and trip pins are too close to the magnet surface).

 

NMRA standards advise that typical 2 axle wagons should have a minimum weight of 50-70g which reduces unwanted movements and snatching. Most BR 4mm RTR rolling stock falls way below this weight.

 

https://www.nmra.org/beginner/weight

 

 

UPDATE: These 5mm dia magnets are N50 strength which may be too strong.  I'm going to try experimenting with some N35 strength magnets.



#21 ianLMS

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 07:37

Slightly smaller magnetswill reduce the pulling strength so maybe a 4mm x 4mm would be sufficient. I am trying out various options using Neodymium magnets as the actual coupling, but struggling to get an electromagnet sufficient strong enough to pull the magnets apart. 

 

Great idea, and these magnets are so cheap.



#22 NoelG

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 21:53

Put a kadee 321 magnet on the layout for DCC uncoupling trials using WheelTappers DCC sound project for 141 using function 12 'uncoupling'. F12 automates the loco movements with uncoupling sounds as the kadees release and the loco backs off. It will also automate coupling movements with appropriate sounds (i.e. brake hiss, air, engine, etc).