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I am happy to see that another run of these Cargowaggons is on the horizon - however...

the couplings on these models are pretty poor and the model is prone to derailments around curves.

 

The spring is just a single piece of metal in a slot - which it can fall out of.

You pretty much have to break the plastic retainer to fit a new one and then on top of that finding a replacement is the devil's work - it is very hard to find the wire with the right combination of diameter and springiness.

 

Ideally Heljan should come up with a nice coupling - something like the Bachmann sprung couplings on their Mark 1 coaches which seem very reliable. I guess that is unlikely on this second run so therefore...

 

I would like to see Heljan provide these springs as a spare, as well as the buffers.

 

In the meantime can anyone offer any fixes which work well?

 

Thanks

 

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Hi All,

i have a few of these in a variety of liveries purchased a number of years ago.

Although not manufactured for some time, I noted a month or so back that one of our favourite 'box shifters' has commissioned some of these including a version complete with graffiti.

Hope this helps.

IMG_3025.PNG

Edited by CB Rail
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Hi rob D2,

in the description on my screen shot it is quoted 'weathered with Graffiti'.

I guess we will have to wait & see how they turn out.......

 

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On 05/05/2020 at 20:42, rob D2 said:

Hmmm,

problem is graphiti on a clean wagon ? Do these have any basis in fact 

Plenty of freshly painted items of rolling stock have been tagged almost straight after.

 

Vandals dont look for dirty or old before selecting their targets, but once tagged the mess becomes part of the patina and so is more prevalent in photographs in the long term

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On 05/05/2020 at 20:42, rob D2 said:

Hmmm,

problem is graphiti on a clean wagon ? Do these have any basis in fact 

 

It's not unknown these days for new stock to be "tagged". 

A set of TPE Mk5s got attacked last year whilst stabled overnight at Scarborough - before they'd even entered revenue earning service,.

 

Going O/T:

Unfortunately I think there's kudos to be earned amongst these "persons" as to who can get to new stock first.

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27 minutes ago, adb968008 said:

Plenty of freshly painted items of rolling stock have been tagged almost straight after.

 

Vandals dont look for dirty or old before selecting their targets, but once tagged the mess becomes part of the patina and so is more prevalent in photographs in the long term

Like this one, A Drax wagon and it hadn't even left W H Davis 

Shirebrook

 

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On 05/05/2020 at 20:42, rob D2 said:

Hmmm,

problem is graphiti on a clean wagon ? Do these have any basis in fact 

Some TOUAX opens were graffitied between their arrival in the UK and their first outing, a couple of days afterwards.

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Is there a readily available source of prototype information for these wagons?  I understand that there were various versions of Cargowaggon in use from the mid-1970's but was trying to find out what prototype the Heljan ones represent, when they first arrived in the UK and what get an idea of dates from livery changes from unbranded to branded (or the other way around)? 

 

Can anyone point me to a reliable source?

 

Thanks

 

Jeremy 

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Paul Bartlett’s wagon site ? Compare details for each year .

 

look very much like the base model for Taunton cider which was about early 80s

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13 hours ago, jbg said:

Is there a readily available source of prototype information for these wagons?  I understand that there were various versions of Cargowaggon in use from the mid-1970's but was trying to find out what prototype the Heljan ones represent, when they first arrived in the UK and what get an idea of dates from livery changes from unbranded to branded (or the other way around)? 

 

Can anyone point me to a reliable source?

 

Thanks

 

Jeremy 

Looking at Paul Bartlett's site and Flickr then comparing the photos and numbers to the SCT RIV Wagon Fleet book there are three distinct builds.

IWE476 nos. 33 80 2797 500-599

IWE512 nos. 33 80 2797 600-699

IWE551 nos. 33 80 2797 700-734, 33 80 2798 000-016

 

However looking at BR Diagram book 340, International Ferry Vehicles, diagram IWE476 is of a different type with running numbers 33 80 2797 500-579.

 

Therefore, the actual builds are:

IWE512 nos. 33 80 2797 580-699

IWE551 nos. 33 80 2797 700-734, 33 80 2798 000-014

 

The first batch seems to have had the Great Britain -  Continent branding:

 

https://PaulBartlett.zenfolio.com/german2doorvan/e215e2f18 (83 80 2797 586)

and

 

ir-2797630-80--Immingham-1986-09

Huw Millington on Flickr, 33 80 2797 630

 

This batch also included the Taunton Cider livered wagon:

https://PaulBartlett.zenfolio.com/german2doorvan/e2a46a162 (83 80 2797 664)

 

and at least one, 33 80 2797 661, had the yellow Cargowaggon branding.

GERS Habfis 3380 2797 661-6

Wagenmeitser on Flickr

 

The other batch seem to show the yellow Cargowaggon branding but these may be mid to late 1980s rebrandings.

ir-2797716-80--Hoo Junction-1989

Huw Millington on Flickr, 33 80 2797 716

 

The earliest photo on Paul Bartlett's site of any of these batches is dated 1981. The RIV Wagon Fleet book states the following build dates:

IWE512 1980

IWE551 1977-78

 

Hope this is of some use.

Edited by Flood
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Thanks for putting that together flood,

seems I can use my two for early 80s, I’ll just coat them in roof, frame dirt all over !

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Thinking about them, I had ago at weathering mine with the airbrush. I kinda got a tarnished half way result rather than the total brown look of a tired one. I guess it’s better than bright aluminium though ..

 

 

ABFB2E56-5131-4733-B082-D8E64F1F39A8.jpeg

6DA76F4C-0317-42EA-9DD3-178338193B62.jpeg

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Thanks Flood for the information, I'll have a closer look at Paul Bartlett's site for some more details.  

 

I'm modelling Cornwall in the early 1980's so the wagons look to be ok for that.  The few published photos I've seen so far for that period seem to show an all over grime livery so I'm not sure I need worry about the branding too much although the earlier style black and white one would make for a nice bit of variety.

 

Jeremy 

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Heljan made the Great Britain - Continent version as part of their first batch, ref 5014, it's a pity they aren't doing it again as I've never seen one for sale.

 

Perhaps Railtec would like to produce a set of transfers?

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On 02/04/2020 at 21:12, letterspider said:

I am happy to see that another run of these Cargowaggons is on the horizon - however...

the couplings on these models are pretty poor and the model is prone to derailments around curves.

 

The spring is just a single piece of metal in a slot - which it can fall out of.

You pretty much have to break the plastic retainer to fit a new one and then on top of that finding a replacement is the devil's work - it is very hard to find the wire with the right combination of diameter and springiness.

 

Ideally Heljan should come up with a nice coupling - something like the Bachmann sprung couplings on their Mark 1 coaches which seem very reliable. I guess that is unlikely on this second run so therefore...

 

I would like to see Heljan provide these springs as a spare, as well as the buffers.

 

In the meantime can anyone offer any fixes which work well?

 

Thanks

 

 

Coming back to your original query a bit late, I had to fiddle with the couplings on a couple of my original Heljan Cargo Waggons. Those thin wire springs really don't do the job properly and get lost very easily when one opens the wagons up.

I worked on one yesterday where I had already replaced the wire with thin plastic rod some time ago, with some success - you would have to experiment a bit with the diameter to get the best effect. This particular wagon was playing up and derailing at certain parts of my layout where nothing else had problems, so I opened it up again last night. The plastic rods are still doing their job, but I thought these wagons are rather light for their size, so have glued two metal weights taken from Bachmann mark 1 coaches (whch are too heavy!), one over each bogie, using contact cement. These weights are a little too wide to allow the body to clip back on, so I snipped a couple of millimetres off the reinforcement pillars on each side of the body interior, just far enough up to allow the body to go over the weights without distorting. 

On one or two of these wagons, I reduced the point on the "V" of the coupling guides slightly, rounding them off just a tad to allow the coupling to slide more easily without getting too stuck on that point. I have done this with Hornby class 50 and 60 diesels also.

Result: perfect running now!

One other mod that I have applied to all of my Cargo Waggons was to narrow the central side steps by around 1mm, which eliminates all clearance problems I encountered on my layout with bridge corners and platform sides.

Edited by SRman
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The coupling guide V arrangement is found on so many types of coaches and wagons and seems to work well -  but not with the Heljan Cargowaggon. I would concur that lack of weight is the problem, there has to be some amount of rolling resistance for these couplings to work in the curves without pulling the whole of the overly light wagon off the rails. I have had some success adding 2p pieces as weights but in the end the problem is still the unsophisticated spring.

 

When making repairs finding springy steel wire of the same gauge and stiffness is the issue - I have a LOT of wire I have experimented with and they all failed. Like I said - this is the devil's work.

 

Some 0.2mm springy steel wire arrived from China the other day and I will report back on the effectiveness of the repair.

The bottom line problem is the springs are just a straight piece of  wire and there is nothing to stop them falling out - they then are lost and the wagons derail, I sometimes find the wire weeks later and it takes me a while to figure out where the wire came from!

I had the same problem when I was running the Jouef HO Cargowaggon - which is designed in the exact same way. 

 

I appreciate Heljan are unlikely to make an improvement to the wagon (we shall see when the new versions come out) but it would be inexpensive to supply these springs as spares.

 

 

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Here is an update on my repairs - in case anyone else is interested in these wagons - they are really nice representations but they have some weaknesses.

1/ Underweight - this is easily solved with additional weights

2/ Badly designed couplings - and here is the reason why. Apart from the problem of the spring (more about that below) the danger area is in when you want to swop over NEM couplings.

BE REALLY CAREFUL WHEN YOU SWOP COUPLINGS. The process will always require some force to pull couplings out or to push them in, this will cause leverage on the coupling assembly causing them to fail internally -and for the wire spring to fall out.

If you can REMOVE the BOGIE easily without damaging the plastic clip, then do so and always support the coupling assembly when doing the exchange.

 

20200625_013802.jpg.3d4a7a3fa065291e5ff9ecd156ad27a0.jpg

If the bogie feels like it cannot be removed without damaging the flanged clip, then support the coupling socket with pointed tip pliers.

 

 

20200625_013233b.jpg.8d1d9113a3ce9212316fb1ee09f91e65.jpg

 

The coupling assembly with the spring wire is covered by a plastic lid. I have removed the lid and shown the outline in red. This lid can be pushed off from the force of pushing in new couplings into the NEM socket. That means the spring falls out

The lid itself becomes a problem with repairs as it does need to be glued to hold it in place but not so hard that you have to break plastic for the next time you will need to repair it.

 

In my photo you can see I am experimenting with 0.2mm copper wire - working well so far; however I would recommend 0.2mm springy steel wire which I bought from here:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/huanshop2015?_trksid=p2047675.l2559

It is a perfect replacement - perhaps slightly better than the Heljan springs which can become bent like this:

20200625_013238.jpg.3256c81079e3d3105d200ff82c5e90a9.jpg

 

This is another reason why they fall out

 

A final word of advice - as you can see the spring protrudes either side of the housing for the coupling assembly - this is necessary because it is the sides of the body which hold into place. If the spring is too short, then it will have enough lateral play that it simply falls out of the retaining assembly altogher, if it it too long you won't get the shell back on to the chassis.

 

Because of all of the things that I mentioned above which have to WORK TOGETHER, there are too many ways for somthing to fail - and so they do

 

I hope the advice will help along other modellers, as there is nothng more frustrating than hunting down a wagon like this, quite rare at the moment, then find it repeatedly derails and ruins your fun.

 

I don't expect the new batch from Heljan to address this problem at the current pricepoint - which is why I am taking a lot of interest in the very accomplished looking Kernow IZA Cargowaggons....

 

Ade

 

 

 

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On 24/06/2020 at 09:16, Fat Controller said:

There are some on here:- https://lapassiondutrain.blogspot.com/ The Rail Adventure vans are former VTG vehicles, I believe, with ballasted Cargowaggon flats being used as brake-force runners.

 

Yes, as Brian says, the Rail Adventure livery isn't authentic for this design of wagon, although no doubt lots won't care.

 

Jon

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On 25/06/2020 at 22:37, letterspider said:

Here is an update on my repairs - in case anyone else is interested in these wagons - they are really nice representations but they have some weaknesses.

1/ Underweight - this is easily solved with additional weights

2/ Badly designed couplings - and here is the reason why. Apart from the problem of the spring (more about that below) the danger area is in when you want to swop over NEM couplings.

BE REALLY CAREFUL WHEN YOU SWOP COUPLINGS. The process will always require some force to pull couplings out or to push them in, this will cause leverage on the coupling assembly causing them to fail internally -and for the wire spring to fall out.

If you can REMOVE the BOGIE easily without damaging the plastic clip, then do so and always support the coupling assembly when doing the exchange.

 

20200625_013802.jpg.3d4a7a3fa065291e5ff9ecd156ad27a0.jpg

If the bogie feels like it cannot be removed without damaging the flanged clip, then support the coupling socket with pointed tip pliers.

 

 

20200625_013233b.jpg.8d1d9113a3ce9212316fb1ee09f91e65.jpg

 

The coupling assembly with the spring wire is covered by a plastic lid. I have removed the lid and shown the outline in red. This lid can be pushed off from the force of pushing in new couplings into the NEM socket. That means the spring falls out

The lid itself becomes a problem with repairs as it does need to be glued to hold it in place but not so hard that you have to break plastic for the next time you will need to repair it.

 

In my photo you can see I am experimenting with 0.2mm copper wire - working well so far; however I would recommend 0.2mm springy steel wire which I bought from here:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/huanshop2015?_trksid=p2047675.l2559

It is a perfect replacement - perhaps slightly better than the Heljan springs which can become bent like this:

20200625_013238.jpg.3256c81079e3d3105d200ff82c5e90a9.jpg

 

This is another reason why they fall out

 

A final word of advice - as you can see the spring protrudes either side of the housing for the coupling assembly - this is necessary because it is the sides of the body which hold into place. If the spring is too short, then it will have enough lateral play that it simply falls out of the retaining assembly altogher, if it it too long you won't get the shell back on to the chassis.

 

Because of all of the things that I mentioned above which have to WORK TOGETHER, there are too many ways for somthing to fail - and so they do

 

I hope the advice will help along other modellers, as there is nothng more frustrating than hunting down a wagon like this, quite rare at the moment, then find it repeatedly derails and ruins your fun.

 

I don't expect the new batch from Heljan to address this problem at the current pricepoint - which is why I am taking a lot of interest in the very accomplished looking Kernow IZA Cargowaggons....

 

Ade

 

 

 


As I said earlier, I have fitted one wagon with a plastic rod spring instead of wire, and this works quite well.

I did contemplate gluing one end only of the wire or pastic rod to the slot it sits in, and leaving the rest free to slide within the coupling and other end. I haven't yet tried this, but will give it a go with the next one I doctor.

Edited by SRman
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