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Author Topic: Changing hooks.  (Read 6722 times)
Michael T.


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« on: June 08, 2010, 01:41:40 PM »

Is it possible to change the old coupling hook to the new one on train engines/rolling stock?
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richg
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« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2010, 02:17:16 PM »

Yes. Go look at the below site. Store the link in Favorites.

http://www.kadee.com/index.shtml

Rich
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Michael T.


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« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2010, 02:41:20 PM »

So will I just be able to replace the old hooks with these without any problems as in them not fitting?
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hawaiiho

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« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2010, 05:06:13 PM »

So will I just be able to replace the old hooks with these without any problems as in them not fitting?


I have found some to be easy, some required a little work, and some were so difficult that I decided they just were not

worth the time that would be required to make the conversion.  You will have to look at what is required and decide

that for yourself.  Try these to sections of the Kadee site for more information.


http://www.kadee.com/conv/holist.pdf


http://www.kadee.com/conv/ho.htm

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Michael T.


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« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2010, 05:49:43 PM »

Okay thanks!
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ABC
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« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2010, 08:11:24 PM »

I have the feeling that you are trying to convert Life-Like, Tyco, AHM or otherwise older rolling stock with talgo trucks or a non-standard coupler box. If this is the case the best solution is just to replace them all, unless they are sentimental to you, then you will need a drill to make holes for the screws for the new coupler boxes on the cars and this is not possible on all cars, some may require a lot of work to get to this point. Also you might have to replace the trucks also because the talgo trucks may still be problematic even after you cut off as much of the coupler box as possible.
So in short sell all of your Life-Like, Tyco and older rolling stock and replace it with newer rolling stock like Atlas, Walthers (Gold Line has metal couplers like Kadee #5s), Bachmann, Athearn, Inter-mountain, Bowser, and Proto 2000. Pretty much anything without talgo trucks and horn-hook couplers will do.
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Michael T.


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« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2010, 08:13:57 PM »

Thanks
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Joe323

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« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2010, 09:03:09 PM »

I have the feeling that you are trying to convert Life-Like, Tyco, AHM or otherwise older rolling stock with talgo trucks or a non-standard coupler box. If this is the case the best solution is just to replace them all, unless they are sentimental to you, then you will need a drill to make holes for the screws for the new coupler boxes on the cars and this is not possible on all cars, some may require a lot of work to get to this point. Also you might have to replace the trucks also because the talgo trucks may still be problematic even after you cut off as much of the coupler box as possible.
So in short sell all of your Life-Like, Tyco and older rolling stock and replace it with newer rolling stock like Atlas, Walthers (Gold Line has metal couplers like Kadee #5s), Bachmann, Athearn, Inter-mountain, Bowser, and Proto 2000. Pretty much anything without talgo trucks and horn-hook couplers will do.

That was the gist of a recent cover sation I had with my LHS a few weeks ago.
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Jhanecker2

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« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2010, 08:03:11 AM »

To Michael T :  Yes it is possible to change your old couplers for knuckle couplers. However, it will take a good deal of work. Kadee makes excellent replacements for just about every situtation. You will require a coupler height gauge to make sure that the couplers will meet at the same height & that the hooks clear the track .  You will need a plier made to bend the hook to its proper shape. If you are dealing with talgo trucks, those where the couplers are mounted to the trucks instead of being mounted to the car bodies,you will  need the adapter tool to allow you to insert the new coupler. All of the above can be purchased from Kadee   or  from   Micro-Mark .   Before you invest in the tools I would suggest you obtain a copy of   " Repair & Maintance of Model Railroads " published by Kalbach Publishing   to detemine  how to accomplish what you want to do and if you have the skills to do it or need the help of a parent or older person. I was into building plastic models at your age and had some experience with assembly and handling of small parts. Model railroads are similar at that point & require  patience to get good results.   John II.
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Michael T.


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« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2010, 10:09:52 AM »

Okay, by the way, I have the new couplers on all of my train cars and I was looking to buy more on eBay (I go there to save money) but most of the cheap ones have the old hooks. Would buying the train cars with the new hooks already on them and spending a few extra bucks save me a lot of time?
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OldTimer


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« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2010, 11:30:09 AM »

Well, when you buy ready-to-run, you always save time.  It's sort of like buying a frozen dinner....heat and eat.  Buit, you'll never learn to cook if all you fix yourself are frozen dinners. 

When you solve a problem, like replacing the couplers on a car, you not only have the satisfaction of actually fixing a a piece of rolling stock and returning it to service, but you probably have learned a new skill or two that will stand you in good stead as you continue in the hobby.  Just try to fix one...see what happens.

By the way, Kadee sells a drill and tap set that lets you drill a #50 hole and tap it for a 2-56 screw, the most common size used to mount draft gear boxes.
Old Timer
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CNE Runner


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« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2010, 01:56:01 PM »

While I agree that one only increases their skill level by raising 'the bar'; sometimes that can be counterproductive. In the case of cheaply made cars such as Tyco, Mantua, Life Like - you can put a lot of effort into bringing the car up to NMRA model railroad standards and still have a cheap car.

Let's take the example of a Tyco boxcar (I am not picking on Tyco BTW). To do the job correctly you will probably have to replace the trucks (which can be a demanding job...based upon how the old trucks were secured to the underbody) [ka-ching]. At the very least you will want to replace the wheels with metal units [ka-ching]. Coupler draft boxes will have to be glued to the underbody - which will need some fitting with a file. Magnetic couplers can then be installed and adjusted [ka-ching...they aren't free].

So what did you end up with?..probably a poorly running/looking cheap addition to your collection. We sell Tyco [et. al.] cars in our 'junk selection' for as little as $1. You can spend four or five times the purchase price rehabilitating that piece of stock (why do you think we sell it for a buck?). Oh, you haven't yet weighed the car and installed additional weight to bring it up to NMRA standards (trust me: all these old 'toy' cars are light as a feather). [Another ka-ching.]

No, I vote with the 'throw-it-away-and-start-new' crowd. Want a manageable challenge? Purchase an Accurail kit and assemble it...you'll be ahead of the game.

Regards,
Ray
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Michael T.


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« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2010, 05:13:44 PM »

Okay thanks guys.
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ABC
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« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2010, 05:56:22 PM »

I can post some photos of some old Tyco cars I added Kadee coupler boxes to and Bachmann E-Z Mate knuckle couplers. I was lazy and glued the coupler boxes and then re-glued them after a minor incident. I couldn't find my Kadee drill and tap set anywhere, so I glued them with Testors plastic glue first then what is more commonly known as super/crazy glue.
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Doneldon

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« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2010, 04:11:47 AM »

Michael -

I agree with the advice which has been offerred before and I'll throw in another little piece: purchase the best equipment you can afford.  It will last longer and give you more satisfaction in the long run, even if it means your railroad will grow a bit more slowly.  If you see something you just have to get from an "economy" manufacturer, check to see if a quality manufacturer makes it as well (as will often be the case).  If not, go ahead and buy the item you want but recognize that you'll have to invest time and money to bring it to specifications that will allow you to enjoy it over time.

The enjoyment you'll get out of quality goods will remain long after you forget the price.

                                                                      -- D
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