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Author Topic: coupler issue  (Read 3222 times)
stanlte01053

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« on: February 23, 2014, 04:47:40 PM »

i just purchased a bachmann empire builder train set. It runs great except i can't run the 2 passenger cars at the same time because they come un-coupled. I can run one at a time with the a & b unit and it runs fine. It doesn't make any difference which passenger car I run as long as i don't run both of them at teh same time. But when i try to run both passenger cars at the same time they come uncoupled. thanks for any help you can give me.
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jward


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« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2014, 07:41:31 PM »

coupler height is critical. are the couplers on both cars the same height?
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
stanlte01053

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« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2014, 07:52:28 PM »

Yes I believe they are. If not how do I adjust them. They are the e-z mate knuckle couplers. they don't look like they can be adjusted. thank you and let me know your thoughht. thanks.
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Doneldon

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« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2014, 01:12:03 AM »

Stan-

Do all combinations of the two cars uncouple? There are four ways you can couple them and I'd wonder if all are problematic. Also, have you checked the locomotives for couplers at the correct height?

It bothers me that the cars stay coupled to the locos but not to one another. Although the parsimonious explanation is that the locos are fine, one car has couplers which are too low and the other has couplers which are too high, it could be true that all three items or a loco and one car are off but the other car is okay. Basically, the idea is that one car is too high but not so much that it won't reliably couple with the correct height loco's couplers while the other car has couplers which are too low but not so low that they won't mate with the locos' couplers at the right height. However, the too-high car's couplers and the too-low car's couplers won't stay together.
                                                                                                                                                                                   -- D
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rogertra


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« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2014, 03:06:04 AM »

1)  Buy a Kadee coupler gauge and use that so make sure all the couplers are at the same standard height.

2)  Buy Kadee washers.

3)  Kadee also make off set couplers where the coupler knuckle is either higher or lower, but a few packets of each.

Couplers are, if anything, usually too low.  Adjust the height of the couplers by inserting one or two washers between the the car's trucks and body and compare to the Kadee coupler gauge.  If the couplers are too high, use the off set knuckle to correct the difference.

Simple as that.

Cheers.

Roger.

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Doneldon

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« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2014, 04:18:01 AM »

Couplers are, if anything, usually too low.  Adjust the height of the couplers by inserting one or two washers between the the car's trucks and body and compare to the Kadee coupler gauge.  If the couplers are too high, use the off set knuckle to correct the difference.

Stan-

You can also use shims between the coupler pocket (draft gear) and the car floor to move the couplers lower. The offset shanks are for fairly large adjustments, and the washers and shims for minor adjustments. One thing you don't want to do is use an offset coupler that changes the coupler height so much that you have to start shimming or adding washers.

You'll also find that Kadee makes couplers with different shank lengths. That's not usually too much of a problem but there are times when you either want very close coupling or you need to hold cars farther apart. These two adjustments are driven by your minimum curve radius.
                                                                                                                                                                                                       -- D
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Joe Satnik


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« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2014, 11:27:04 AM »

Dear All,

Some other possibilities: 

If you are running the original 22"R oval that came with the set, then there really shouldn't be any problems with the track work.   

If you have expanded your layout, you may have inadvertently put in smaller radius curves (including turnouts) or added "S" curves.

Rule of thumb to eliminate "S" curves, according to John Armstrong:

"Put a straight between opposing curves that is at least as long as your longest rolling stock."

In my 2010 print catalog it looks as though your passenger cars are longer than 9", so you would have to have at least 2 straights between opposing curves.

\_  vs. \_ _
   \            \   

Another possibility, could the diaphragms between the passenger cars be hitting each other on the curves and pulling the couplers apart?

Hope this helps.

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik

P.S.  "Diaphragm" would be a great word for a spelling bee.  Even with a spell checker it smacked me upside the head.   

   

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If your loco is too heavy to lift, you'd better be able to ride in, on or behind it.
utdave

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« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2014, 03:08:57 PM »

Heres what  i did with those type of long type of passenger cars    i use couplers  that have a shelf on them   called shelf couplers  Kadee makes them  #118 and #119 .    what happens is a small hump in the tracks lift the cars high enough to uncouple  like a switch .   one package will do 2 cars .   so give this a try      DAve
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