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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Coupling help for beginner.

Having recently got into model railing after a gap since childhood (longer than I thought), I was bought a Hornby DCC Mixed Goods set for my birthday. The other day I purchased 2 Bachmann goods wagons (a firestone plank truck and a Toad Brake Van). All was well till I tried to couple up to a Loco. The couplings, although both use the same principle - hook and loop (tension lock?), they are completely different in size, and as a result create all sorts of derailments on bends and points, and uncouplings on the run.

I have read lots of forums talking about all sorts of different couplings, but that has just confused me more.

What options have I got?
What is the easiest and most cost effective method without destroying my existing rolling stock?

Other than that, DCC is great. I have also bought a Pendolino 4 car train which is great too.
 

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What I often do Bill is if I have such variety in couplings is select one that has removable ones and put in a differing size one on one end of the same wagon. I believe a company in the UK called Replica Railways can for example supply larger NEM (swallow-tailed) couplings (which just pull out) for such a purpose.
I hope that's not too muddied!
 

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There is now a wide choice in couplings, and - at last - UK manufacturers have fairly recently adopted the NEM pocket mounting which makes it easy to fit the coupler of your choice. Because it is relatively early days since the NEM pocket was adopted, there are however a fair number of models in both Bachmann's and Hornby's ranges without this useful fitting. Of the stock you have, the Bachmann wagons are likely to be so fitted. Another immediate solution to your present problem might be to buy some screw on versions of the small tension lock coupler, to replace the older type on the Hornby; these are usually readily available in model shops in a pack of ten by Bachmann. In the longer term, take the time to look at what is available. A google on Kadee should find their website: you may well be pleasantly surprised to see how things have developed while you have been away. On which note, welcome back, there is much to enjoy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys

I will take a look on the internet and see what I can find about Kadee couplings, and investigate further on my next trip to the model shop.

Thanks all for the advise - nice to see a friendly forum community willing to help novices.
 

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Bill you may not find Kadee's in your local model shop. There are lot's of suppliers in the UK and it pays to shop around for prices - maybe even do a search on Ebay
 

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Doug has posted a useful how-to article herein, on the very subject of Kadee fitment. (link).

However, with Bill just 'starting out', will kadees not prove just a little too techical in fitment and usage?

I don't have any real issues mixing Bachmann and Hornby couplers on our small layout, with its tight curves.....at least, not with recently-acquired models.

we have got some older wagons, and these have very compact couplers, with little sideplay, and these cause problems.

I think there is a dimension difference between the hook end, and the bar, on these compared to later one's....which seem to have more free play?
I'd buy some spare Hornby couplers and replace using glue or screws.
 

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QUOTE However, with Bill just 'starting out', will kadees not prove just a little too techical in fitment and usage?

I did wonder about that which is why I did not respond last night when I saw the post having decided "A plague on all your houses, I'm going with Kadee". As I don't intend to convert too many coaches, I can appreciate the problem he is having, as getting Bachmann and Hornby coaches and locomotives to "cross couple" is not as simple a process as it should be.

In the first instance it might be best to cajole the H & B couplers to be correctly centred. They do seem reluctant to do this on some of my coaches.

David
 

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I over the last couple of years have looked at a few options. The Kadee solution is the last option. I looked at the new close-coupled Hornby and Roco, but they only look good on coaches when coupled. They look bad though on anything else.

Kadee for me means I can run anything with anything. I am going to run my old Lima loco at last and pull any wagon or coach that I have. Up until now it has been a pain with at least 4 different types of couplers on the layout.

I also want to remotely uncouple. I can do this with the Kadee system.

I had to standardise and I chose a system that looks ok on wagons in a siding, behind a steam loco or on a diesel. The knuckle on a Kadee is very similar to many prototype systems so it's not that bad.
 

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years ago whilst into US modelling, the preferred advice was to body-mount the Kadees..(all vehicles were trucked..ie..had bogies)....

now, I am aware many US prototype freight cars had their trucks closer to the ends of the vehicle than is usual on british bogie stock...but as I recall, the same advice applied to US passenger stock too.

the reason for body mounting centred around pushing bogie stock......the forces going through the body rather than through the bogie pin.

however, I noticed the cheaper ranges intended for trainset usage ie sharp curves, went with truck mounted couplers.

which is the preferred mounting method, bearing in mind the sort of trackage used?
 

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QUOTE (alastairq @ 17 Aug 2007, 16:56) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>which is the preferred mounting method, bearing in mind the sort of trackage used?

Personally I prefer the body mounted method as applied to most (all?) European stock. I am in the process of converting a lot of my old stock to close coupling for which I will be using both Fleischmann and Roco close coupling conversions. It is my intention to uuse the Fleischmann Profi coupling as I feel it gives the best operation in practice.

With close coupling you can get most stock round fairly tight curves as the coupling "stretches" under load.

Regards
 
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