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DT
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After a few topics recently, I thought that it may be useful to post a few stories about converting UK OO stock to Kadee couplers. We have talked about this before, but I think that it would be great if we create a list of topics on this subject and store them in the Resources section allowing people in the future to easily find them.

I have bought a whole stack of #5 Kadee couplers. These are going to go on my wagons that are of various origin, shape and size. The #5 is a nice all-rounder that can be screwed or glued as required.



I have also bought a selection of NEM pocket Kadees, #17, #18, #19 & #20. I initially bought one pack of each and tried them out with various locos and other items that had NEM pockets. I found that most British stock required #20 (extra long), some could use the #19 (long). I ordered more packets of the #19 and #20.

Private owner wagon conversion

So here I have three private owner wagons from Hornby.


Great little wagons, but IMHO, spoilt by the unsightly big coupler that is standard on these wagons.

I remove the standard coupler:


Remove the axle for easy access and hack away at the screw mount. I have determined that the mount has to go to bring the Kadee coupler to the right height? You'll see just now how this is measured.


The mount is now off and filed flat. This is the #5 Kadee in pieces as it is supplied.


The Kadee is assembled as per instructions. I've glued a small piece of material just behind the screw hole. This is to raise the coupler a fraction and keep it level - I find that is sinks a little if glued directly to the chassis of the wagon. Use plasticard or in this case some thin rubber.


Kadee screwed and glued onto the chassis. Use the original screw if it is long enough. See update below where the screw is not used and the coupling distance is slightly reduced.


Using the #205 Kadee height gauge, check the height of the installed coupler. In the US and for HO, they go for 25/64ths of an inch (centreline of the coupler). I find this works fine for my OO gauge stock so I stick to it.


Here are some shots showing comparisons between the standard coupler and the Kadee coupler. Make your own mind up as to which looks better.








With the standard coupler, the distance between the buffers when the wagons are pulled is 10mm; with the Kadee coupler it is 8.5mm; the distance when pushed is a little less with the standard couplers, but this is not a major factor.




I have added Kadees to quite a few of my stock and I think that they look good and work fine. I'm experimenting with various ways to un-couple and will report back any findings. I'd like electro magnetic uncouplers all over the place. I'll see if I can make some up, similar to the one supplied by Kadee. More later.
 

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DT
Joined
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4,794 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 17 Aug 2007, 18:28) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>...Have you thought about the Kadee #58? ...

I have seen the #58, there was one with the height gauge. It does seem slimmer.

The reason that I have the #5 Kadees is that I picked up a very good deal on a web site recently where they were getting rid of stock. I managed to get 20 packets. I'll use them on all my old wagons that I have lying around
 
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