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If the magnets are being glued to the parts before they have fully cured (implying they have recently come out of a 3D printer) it's not surprising they would become unstuck occasionally.

 

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Including specific couplings for the HST power cars was indeed a nice touch. I had no issues with mine coming back out after plugging them into the Power Car pocket although I did fit them to the HST a few days before being able to run it. Possibly therefore they had time to cure more before I ran mine.

 

I did note a few of mine had a bit of a deposit on them but that was the minority. They are being purchased faster then they can make them so it would make sense if they're basically shipping them out as soon as they possibly can.

 

Looking at my set of 'close' couplings I can see the same deposit. I think I'll take them out the packet now and leave them in the open air for a few days before fitting them.

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Mine arrived Wednesday and they were rapidly fitted to my HST stock.   These had the old Hornby wide coupling.  I've been waiting for a product like this for years and had pondered with butchering some Hornby couplings by gluing some Kadee's to them.  I saw an article or a Youtube on it somewhere...

 

There is maybe a tiny bit of bodywork clashing between the buffet and W42285 on the 4th radius curves I have on my lashed up layout.  But nothing to be to worried about...

 

I've attached some photos of parts of the completed rake.  There is a slight variation in gappage - I think the ex Lima TGS has the coupling socket mounted further outbound than the others? 

 

I'm really delighted with the results.  I shall be ordering at least two more sets when they can ramp up production.

 

I've even toyed with having a look at some Airfix Centenary stock that have the same coupling sockets.   I could be ordering gazillions of them...

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2020-02-26 20.28.32.jpg

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4 hours ago, Harlequin said:

If the magnets are being glued to the parts before they have fully cured (implying they have recently come out of a 3D printer) it's not surprising they would become unstuck occasionally.

 

 

There was me thinking I could easily 3D print something similar and refine the length to suit both individual stock and the curves on my layout.

 

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On 18/02/2020 at 17:04, Andy Reichert said:

I think putting a proprietary name on magnets sticking to one another is going a little far. My grandkid's Brio seems to be identical functionally.

 

I'd be much more impressed if there was also an uncoupling system.  I'll stick to Sergent Engineering Couplers which can be uncoupled by simply waving a maget over them plus my own ideas for now.

 

Andy

 

 

Hi Andy

They've registered the design, which is normal,  but certainly haven't tried to patent the concept. The concept is simple but actually designing something that works reliably is not trivial. Nevertheless, with  NEM coupler boxes becoming pretty standard  I'm suprised that nobody had marketed something like this before, but they hadn't and now someone has, so good luck to them.

 

There's nothing to stop anyone else designing a magnetic coupler attached to an NEM362  fitting  so long as it 's a different design and if someone can figure out how to produce one that's handed, i.e. with a North & South pole each side,  then that would be an improvement. That may be difficult though without a very bulky coupler head as it would require some kind of horizontally mounted bar magnet.

 

There has been a magnetic coupler (the Magclick) working on similar lines for O scale for some time where the magnet replaces the normal drawhook  and the zeroists I know who use them find them very useful for joining coaches within a rake. Personally I use Kadee NEM couplers with French outline H0 but will certainly consider these for use within coaching rakes as I find that, on larger exhibition layouts, I've found my Kadee equipped coaches to be prone to uncommanded uncoupling on any uneveness in the track, usually at board joins.

 

The Sergent Engineering coupler is an interesting device, effectively a scale working model of a real AAR coupler with a small steel ball within the coupler acting as the coupling pin. Waving a magnet over the coupler to raise it recreates the action of a brakeman "pulling the pin". As with the real thing there is no remote uncoupling so it should be well suited to the sort of "train crew" operation popular in N. America (where many users of Kadees also dispense with the magnetic uncouplers and manually uncouple cars when switching) . Experiences of using  them operationally seem to vary and it would surely be difficult to use them under gangway connections. Without remote uncoupling they are also rather less suited to the "signal box" style of operation from a central panel more commonly used here. In any case they are only AFAIK available for use with standard NMRA draft boxes so not with NEM362 boxes.   

 

Update. I've just been looking at Magclics website https://www.magclics.co.uk/

and their new gauge 1 couplers do include two magnets with opposite  poles facing so its doesn't matter which way round a vehicle is facing. I don't know whether that would be feasible in the smaller scales. 

 

Edited by Pacific231G
clarfiication and punctuation
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I think this are a great idea and having seen a video on You Tube I got a set of non NEM HST for my Blue Grey Hornby set.  I run fixed rakes and whilst I use the Bachmann fixed bar they are a pain if you want to alter a fixed rake or take them to run at the club or at an exhibition.

 

On unpacking 4 of the magnets had come out of their sockets and I immediately glued them back in place.  In hindsight that was a mistake. The two magnets for the power cars are different types.  This means if you want to swap power cars to have the powered power car at the front when you change direction and want to keep the correct coach formation you can't.  It would have been better for the two power car magnets to  be the same polarity and the outermost bogies on the coaches to have the same polarity.  Had I thought about it I could have managed this by glueing in the the loose magnets to achieve that.

 

The TGS is a different model to the SO and FO and the gap between the TGS and the adjacent SO is slightly wider than the gap between the other coaches.  Pretty sure this is an issue with the  coach as the couplings all appeared the same length to me.

 

On my layout the all the  coaches except thecTGS derailed at two locations.  Both included Peco small radius points immediately after a curve in the non scenic part of the layout. This was caused by the closeness of the coaches.

 

I have ordered 2mm thick x 2mm diameter magnets to place between the Hunt Coupling magnets to widen that gap.  I think this will solve that problem.

 

I played around with the couplings before fitting them to see how I could use or adapt them for my 30+ Lima Mk3s.  Cutting a notch out of the front coupling bar and attaching the coupling to the underside of the square section between the coupling ring and the bogie is a possibility.  However I am also going to try using the 2mm thick by 2mm diameter magnets either glueing then to the front of the Lima coupling bar or drilling a 2mm hole and inserting and gluing them into it.  I went for 2mm thick to ensure they were sufficiently strong.  Thinking about it the Hunt Couplings are not even 2mm thick so maybe the better option for my Lima would be to glue thinner 2mm or even 3mm diameter magnets to the outside of the Lima coupling bar rather than trying to line up holes to insert the 2mm thick by 2mm diameter magnets.

 

I doubt a Lima version will appear in their range or doubt an easy fit version anyway so I suspect I will go DIY for my Lima MK3s but buy the Hunt Couplings for my Bachmann Mk1 and Mk2 rakes.

Edited by Waverley47708
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I've been using the Roco/Hornby equivalent couplings within coach rakes but they are often a pain to couple together and the Roco ones I discovered have a weakness in that one part of the coupling eventually breaks off after a number of couplings/uncouplings so these seem attractive. Has anyone used them on Hornby Maunsells and if so what length and does that vary depending on radii.

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Anyone got a photo of these in use on Bachmann Mk1 coaches please.

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1 hour ago, Butler Henderson said:

I've been using the Roco/Hornby equivalent couplings within coach rakes but they are often a pain to couple together and the Roco ones I discovered have a weakness in that one part of the coupling eventually breaks off after a number of couplings/uncouplings so these seem attractive. Has anyone used them on Hornby Maunsells and if so what length and does that vary depending on radii.

I've had the same problem with Roco close couplers within rakes. Replacing them with the Kadees I use at the ends of rakes hasn't proved entirely succesful and they are slightly further apart so I will probably use these if the length is suitable. They'll also make it easier to change formations within a rake.

The length would depend on radius, even with close coupling units, and the larger the radius the closer together you can bring the buffers.

I'm surprised (not at all) that these have had to be offeredwith a cranked option . NEM362 is actually very specific about the height of the inside upper surface of the box above the railhead (8.5mm +-0.2mm) and the longitudinal distance between the front face of the box and the buffer head (7mm +-0.5mm with latitude for "kinematic" i.e. close coupling mountings) Unfortunately, manufacturers have been rather cavalier about keeping within these tolerances but a  box designed to be at the wrong height is quite simply not an NEM box* so I hope those manufacturers who did so never claimed they were. With Kadees, I've found it necessary to keep a stock of three different lengths and a bit of trial and error to match them to each vehicle (which depends also on the curves and points you're using) so, if the Hunt coupling catches on, which it surely deserves to, they'll probably need to do the same especially if they start exporting them.  

 

*There's no actual NEM standard for OO. But DOGA have adopted NEM362 and as the dimensions and position in that standard are the same for H0 and S scales there would be no reason not to. 

 

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2 hours ago, Butler Henderson said:

I've been using the Roco/Hornby equivalent couplings within coach rakes but they are often a pain to couple together and the Roco ones I discovered have a weakness in that one part of the coupling eventually breaks off after a number of couplings/uncouplings so these seem attractive. Has anyone used them on Hornby Maunsells and if so what length and does that vary depending on radii.


I've used these within rakes with much success.
https://www.fleischmann.de/en/product/15111-0-0-1-4-0-0-003005-0/products.html
They're a lot more robust than the ROCO close couplings.

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20 hours ago, Pacific231G said:

Hi Andy

They've registered the design, which is normal,  but certainly haven't tried to patent the concept. The concept is simple but actually designing something that works reliably is not trivial. Nevertheless, with  NEM coupler boxes becoming pretty standard  I'm suprised that nobody had marketed something like this before, but they hadn't and now someone has, so good luck to them.

 

There's nothing to stop anyone else designing a magnetic coupler attached to an NEM362  fitting  so long as it 's a different design and if someone can figure out how to produce one that's handed, i.e. with a North & South pole each side,  then that would be an improvement. That may be difficult though without a very bulky coupler head as it would require some kind of horizontally mounted bar magnet.

 

There has been a magnetic coupler (the Magclick) working on similar lines for O scale for some time where the magnet replaces the normal drawhook  and the zeroists I know who use them find them very useful for joining coaches within a rake. Personally I use Kadee NEM couplers with French outline H0 but will certainly consider these for use within coaching rakes as I find that, on larger exhibition layouts, I've found my Kadee equipped coaches to be prone to uncommanded uncoupling on any uneveness in the track, usually at board joins.

 

The Sergent Engineering coupler is an interesting device, effectively a scale working model of a real AAR coupler with a small steel ball within the coupler acting as the coupling pin. Waving a magnet over the coupler to raise it recreates the action of a brakeman "pulling the pin". As with the real thing there is no remote uncoupling so it should be well suited to the sort of "train crew" operation popular in N. America (where many users of Kadees also dispense with the magnetic uncouplers and manually uncouple cars when switching) . Experiences of using  them operationally seem to vary and it would surely be difficult to use them under gangway connections. Without remote uncoupling they are also rather less suited to the "signal box" style of operation from a central panel more commonly used here. In any case they are only AFAIK available for use with standard NMRA draft boxes so not with NEM362 boxes.   

 

Update. I've just been looking at Magclics website https://www.magclics.co.uk/

and their new gauge 1 couplers do include two magnets with opposite  poles facing so its doesn't matter which way round a vehicle is facing. I don't know whether that would be feasible in the smaller scales. 

 

 

Been there. Already done that.  My Hornby Suburbans couple that way.

 

 

 

I'm not sure "Registered Design" exists over here in the USA. I'll have to dig in to that. I do think I saw an  European couple advertised recently that was Hunt -like, but the magnets latched side by side rather than end to end.
 works over th

gresley sub coupling-600.jpg

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Sorry about last post being unfinished. I can't edit it unfortunately. 

 

Of course there is a little bit more to my picture than meets the eye. Magnetised buffer heads do take a little bit more high technology that you find in the spare parts box.

 

I wonder what the "Registered Design" process is of something invisible? Do two different invisibles look alike? :)

 

Andy

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32 minutes ago, Andy Reichert said:

 

Been there. Already done that.  My Hornby Suburbans couple that way.

 

 

 

I'm not sure "Registered Design" exists over here in the USA. I'll have to dig in to that. I do think I saw an  European couple advertised recently that was Hunt -like, but the magnets latched side by side rather than end to end.
 works over th

gresley sub coupling-600.jpg

That's interesting Andy. Using lightly sprung steel buffers as magnetic couplers seems obvious but are they able to slide over one another satisfactorilu. Also what are the minimum curves on the layout?

MagClik now have an O scale coupler attached to the drawhook that swings down for coupling to vehicles with conventional three or screw link couplers. I've not seen one of these in action but I've got a couple of Zéroists coming to a local French Railways Society meeting at my place tomorrow so I'll ask them if they have. According to the blurb the magnet hangs down but two of them (of opposite polarity) will swing up to connect.

There was a coupler developed by a chap in Lille in the 1970s called the "attelage JC". This used an iron link - that could be modelled as screw link (or a three link one assumes)  pulled up and held to an inverted hook by a permanent magnet mounted behind the drawbar. This meant that the magnet only had to hold the weight of the link, drawing forces were transmitted through the hook. Uncoupling was effected by an electromagnet in the track that cancelled the permanent magnet allowing the link to drop. My diagram (from an article on couplers in the French Railways Society Journal) may explain it.

1963495189_J.C.magneticcoupler(diag.DT).jpg.f08fd875a41d0b7f885276058e318365.jpg

It was a single ended coupler though 'J.C.' (he preferred to remain anonymous) apparently developed a double ended version. It  seems rather 'Heath Robinson'  but a number of  modellers used it succesfully for both O and H0  though it was never developed commercially. Despite the inverted hook It could look remarkably realistic (The screw link here was soldered up solidly) .  

1359968161_JCrealisticm.jpg.e73e34056ca57c5b952e1751758afa32.jpg

 

For several years It found some favour with fine scale modellers in France (and elsewhere?) after a couple of articles describing it in the October and November 1977 editions of Loco Revue. In the end though most of these went with the Alec Jackson coupler.  The advent of  neodymium magnets might make this idea worth looking at again.

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Andy Reichert said:

 

Been there. Already done that.  My Hornby Suburbans couple that way.

 

 

 

I'm not sure "Registered Design" exists over here in the USA. I'll have to dig in to that.

 

You'll find the details here

https://www.bl.uk/business-and-ip-centre/articles/whats-the-difference-between-unregistered-design-right-and-design-registration

I think a registered design is called a design patent in US law. ISTR it was the basis of the lawsuit that Apple took against Samsung for a phone that had very similar design features, such as the rounded shape. as an iPhone. If you copy even someone's unregistered design they have some protection but the design cannot be "commonplace".  

 

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I have fitted a spare pair of the Hunt HST couplers to my Airfix Coronation stock as they have the same type  of coupling sockets fitted to them.

 

Not very prototypical and I probably won't keep them on, especially as they are reasonably close coupled to start with. The corridor connections are quite long on Centenary coaches.  They were very, very good for their day.

 

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2020-02-29_16_44_24.jpg

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Received my couplings this weekend and I am very happy with them. I will definitely be purchasing  more. 

 

here’s a video i made testing them this afternoon 

 

 

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8 hours ago, 87004 said:

I have fitted a spare pair of the Hunt HST couplers to my Airfix Coronation stock as they have the same type  of coupling sockets fitted to them.

 

Not very prototypical and I probably won't keep them on,

The general appearance between the coaches looks far better than the massing of the tension locks which I would suggest are even less prototypical.

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I have been messing around with magnets as an option for coupling wagons and coaches for the last couple of years. I am getting there slowly, a little more development is needed and ideally a quicker way of making them. Based on the Maglic, it uses a loop of brass wire, brass tube and a 2mm x 2mm neodymium magnet. A rake of 4 coaches is about the maximum for these small magnets before they part at the most inconvenient of places. Longer rakes would benefit from larger magnets. 

 

The gaps between stock can be reduced. I have quick tight radius curves to negotiate so need a reasonable gap between the stock. Polarity is always an issue, and uncoupling is done by pulling the stock apart. 

 

The hose connections add additional complications, again, something which needs a bit more thought and development to make easier to use. 

 

I have also purchased the Keen system and will see if they work any better.20180509_150627_resized.jpg.daa234889932ca662aae3a054b6e1e19.jpg

20180605_071606_resized.jpg.bda9b353e87b53190c708bb8e878c380.jpg

20180616_174803_resized.jpg.bc17b407e5838ae4ac0ec674a23afbbf.jpg

20180616_174850_resized.jpg.86e9b3a96b7c5c7426fcd9c4e82d39ec.jpg

 

1984983442_MagnetCoupling-4mmFinalVersion.jpg.9d28e7cd1090eb64f87fae01ed6e3787.jpg

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3 hours ago, ianLMS said:

I have been messing around with magnets as an option for coupling wagons and coaches for the last couple of years. I am getting there slowly, a little more development is needed and ideally a quicker way of making them. Based on the Maglic, it uses a loop of brass wire, brass tube and a 2mm x 2mm neodymium magnet. A rake of 4 coaches is about the maximum for these small magnets before they part at the most inconvenient of places. Longer rakes would benefit from larger magnets. 

 

The gaps between stock can be reduced. I have quick tight radius curves to negotiate so need a reasonable gap between the stock. Polarity is always an issue, and uncoupling is done by pulling the stock apart. 

 

The hose connections add additional complications, again, something which needs a bit more thought and development to make easier to use. 

 

I have also purchased the Keen system and will see if they work any better.20180509_150627_resized.jpg.daa234889932ca662aae3a054b6e1e19.jpg

20180605_071606_resized.jpg.bda9b353e87b53190c708bb8e878c380.jpg

20180616_174803_resized.jpg.bc17b407e5838ae4ac0ec674a23afbbf.jpg

20180616_174850_resized.jpg.86e9b3a96b7c5c7426fcd9c4e82d39ec.jpg

 

1984983442_MagnetCoupling-4mmFinalVersion.jpg.9d28e7cd1090eb64f87fae01ed6e3787.jpg

Hi Ian

Thanks for posting the result of your developments, these do look very interesting and I like the idea of using the drawbar hook itself.

This looks very interesting. It looks like your magnets are a tad smaller (and therefore more discrete) than those used by the Hunt systen. Do the couplers swing up to find each other when you bring vehicles together or do they need a bit of encouragement?

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27 minutes ago, Pacific231G said:

Hi Ian

Thanks for posting the result of your developments, these do look very interesting and I like the idea of using the drawbar hook itself.

This looks very interesting. It looks like your magnets are a tad smaller (and therefore more discrete) than those used by the Hunt systen. Do the couplers swing up to find each other when you bring vehicles together or do they need a bit of encouragement?

The magnets are quite small, hence the low pulling capability. 3mm x 3mm might work better for longer rakes and is probably the size used by Hunt. However, but the bigger they are, the less discrete they are.

 

They do swing to meet each other, but on occasion a little nudge into the adjacent coach on the buffers is all that's needed for them to attract. Once you get them swinging even a tiny amount the magnets are strong enough to come together on their own.

 

The advantage to using the hook is that if you have some stock fitted with screw-link/3-link, the magnet will just hang down and not get in the way. 

 

Its not perfect by any stretch of the imagination: The issues I encounter (which I am working on resolving) are;

1. The magnets being more attracted to metal wheels or other metallic parts nearby (nails in the buffer beam used for the hoses for instance)

2. The length of time constructing and putting together the tiny components (possible one-piece 3D printed design solution might solve that one if anyone is interested)

3. Remote uncoupling (probably not possible with this arrangement)

4. The length of the links and magnet assembly is critical and may differ depending on stock, curves etc. 

5. The strength of the magnets coping with several coaches/wagons and parting on tight bends

6. Pushing stock through curves and buffers locking.

7. Polarity - the need to make sure the stock is fitted with the magnets of the correct polarity each end and remembering which is which!.

 

I have also tried a thick wire between the two coaches which did allow push/pull etc, and replicated the hoses hanging down, however, it make the rakes impossible to handle as they were permanently fixed to each other. This way, I can part the coaches, remove and replace without too much issue.

 

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I orderered a pack of short, a pack of standard and a pack of stepped to try out, they work fine generally and are a good option for the oxford rail mark 3s.

I am however disapointed with the quality, a couple of the pieces came snapped and they can also be very loose within the NEM pocket which means they are useless unless you want to glue them in place.  

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I saw this morning that there was now a version specific for the Oxford Mk3's so have snapped up a pack, along with another HST pack for my second HST. However, I now note that they're now once again out of stock such is the popularity of these new couplings. 

 

The pack of close couplings I had have been fitted to my Hornby Mk2e's. The gap between the coaches is now much, much reduced but under test they were still able to traverse the club layout with no issues. Even propelling through medium pointwork and double slips were no issue.

 

I did have a couple of couplings let go of the NEM pocket but none of the magnets came out. I presume the time left in the open allowed the plastic time to properly cure and adhere to the magnet before they were put under load. Whilst you could argue that should be done at source I think they're basically trying to churn out as many as possible to meet the demand currently. 

Those which let go of the NEM pockets were soon sorted with a spot of glue. By that point I was pretty certain that they'd be staying on the rake so gluing them in place wasn't an issue.

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Eek!

 

No replies to emails or Facebook messages.

 

Maybe he's just very, very busy.

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Posted (edited)

I see these as useful only on fixed rake formations, but not mixed rake formations or on goods trains due to the lack of uncoupling without the big hand from the sky. They seem a useful alternative to Roco or Hornby close couplings. They do not seem to be an alternative to couplings that can uncouple like Kadee's or TLCs over ramps.

 

They seem of NO use on a shunting layout, or a shunting yard on a bigger layout. They cannot uncouple.

Edited by NoelG
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