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Author Topic: Caboose On The Way  (Read 7286 times)
punkin

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« on: May 17, 2015, 04:46:43 PM »

Hello all,

I ordered a caboose for my train this weekend from ebay. It's the brand that starts with "L". It's supposed to be very nice but I just noticed when looking at the pictures it has different train connectors than what are on my Bachmann. The connectors on the caboose has a hoop and hook like connection but my Bachmann train has a completely different looking set up. Is it possible to get different connectors so that they can all be connected together?

This is the caboose that I bought, it's a model #4175; http://www.ebay.com/itm/LGB-4175-D-RGW-caboose-and-passenger-car-with-interior-light-indoor-use-only-/291459523053?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2047675.l2557&nma=true&si=riucDKNowI1mUIiqCBHYcE4KmuI%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc




Thanks!
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Chuck N

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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2015, 07:23:36 PM »

There are a lot of options out there. Bachmann has knuckle couplers, Kadee has knuckle couplers, USAT and others.

Your first choice is do you want truck mounted or body mounted couplers, or a mixture of the two.  I have many cars with Kadee #831s which are truck mounted and raise the coupler to body mount height.  The Bachmann knuckle couplers will work with the straight shank on the LGB truck.  Many of us prefer the body mount height.  This is a decision you need to make.

My best advice is to find a local group and pick their brains.  We at a distance, really can't give you the real advice you need, only recommendations.

You need to see what can be done and why.

If you have tight curves(less than 8' diameter), truck mounted will work better for longer cars.

Chuck
« Last Edit: May 17, 2015, 07:33:27 PM by Chuck N » Logged
RkyGriz


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« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2015, 12:38:03 AM »

Nice one there Punkin. The Queen Mary Drovers Caboose series is a great addition to any G Scale collection. The couplers on it are called "hook and loop" and I find them to be more reliable than the Bachmann knuckle couplers are.I prefer to use the hook and loop couplers as I've never had them let go . You watched my videos. Most of these trains are held together with the hook and loop couplers. The problem that I always have with the knuckle couplers is that they often let go and if you're not there to catch it, your loco will run into the car/cars that were left behind  and that can cause your train to  derail. It can even cause damage to the holders that the  brake bar on top of the pilot is held on by as they have a tendency to break easily and that assembly will cost you about $22.00 on Bachmann.com to replace unless you're industrious and good with glue! I don't know about the reliability of Kadee couplers in G Scale but I do use them on my H.O. scale trains and I find them to be excellent in that application. I've thought about converting my G Scale trains over to them, but since I have 23 pieces of rolling stock to convert( the locos don't count) I'd be looking at well over $100.00 for a full conversion. Frankly, I'd rather spend that money on new track or other rolling stock! I would, however, convert over to them if I had lots of money to burn, which I unfortunately don't  have right now.
Hook and loop or Kadee's are probably going to be your best choice to protect your train.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2015, 11:20:38 AM by RkyGriz » Logged

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Loco Bill Canelos

Model railroading since 1947


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« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2015, 10:55:28 AM »

Punkin, all

If your Bachmann knuckle couplers are letting go, an easy fix is to remove them and spray paint them with Rustoleum ruddy brown primer.  This will give them just enough bite to keep them together, and they will look very realistic as well.  I regularly pull 10 to 14 cars or more and they never separate when using the above method.

There is no need to use expensive replacement couplers unless you just prefer to.  The Bachmann Couplers can be installed on your new caboose!

Glad you are having fun!

Bill
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Loco Bill,  Roundhouse Foreman
Colorado & Kansas Railway Missouri Western Railway
Semi Official Historian; Bachmann Large Scale
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Chuck N

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« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2015, 02:13:26 PM »

RG

Like Bill, I haven't had any problems with the Bachmann knuckle couplers.  Do your couplers open and come apart, or do they stay closed and just come apart?

Two things come to mind.  First, are all of your couplers at the same height?  The faces should fully overlap, not just a partial fit.  Second is your track fairly smooth. Dips and rises can also lead to coupler failure.

Chuck
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RkyGriz


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« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2015, 07:19:35 PM »

Hi, Chuck. They come open. I try to make sure they are all locked, but more often than not one will open and leave the rest of the train in the "dust".The cars in question are all Bachmann J.S. passenger cars with factory metal wheels, so they are all the same height.Track is smooth with no dents, dips or rises. I don't have this problem with the stock couplers on my freight or passenger cars made by Lionel-only Bachmann knuckle couplers .
Thanks!
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Chuck N

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« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2015, 07:28:39 PM »

Thanks for the reply, I'm out of suggestions.

A couple of last questions.  Does it happen at the same place on the layout, or randomly?  Is it always the same cars?



Chuck
« Last Edit: May 18, 2015, 07:34:30 PM by Chuck N » Logged
RkyGriz


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« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2015, 08:38:24 PM »

It's always at random places all around the track.I have a collection of 20+ Bachmann knuckle couplers so I switch them out when this happens which solves the problem -at least temporarily. The cars affected by this are all 8 of my Bachman J.S. passenger cars, the 3 tenders, and the 2 freight cars that I have. The rest of my rolling stock (Lionel, Kalamazoo, and Hartland) don't have this issue.
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Loco Bill Canelos

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« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2015, 10:11:43 AM »

Like Chuck, I don't have a problem with my Bachmann couplers during a long pull. 

Since it seems to be happening only on the passenger cars and not the freight cars, it may be due to their longer length on your tight curves.

I have had them fail to couple when switching, but that also happens with the other brand of couplers I use.    Some years ago I was having a few trains come apart and I noticed it only happened when the train shifted from a straight section to a very sharp curve.  This was many years ago and I found it was only happening to the slick unpainted couplers, but not to the ones I had spray painted to look rusty.   Most often the couplers will come loose because of a track problem or problems as Chuck noted and that is the most common reason they do.  Sometime we think our track is perfect when it is not.  It can be as simple as an almost hard to see misalignment between a straight and a curve.

Another possibility is that something falls in the middle of the track.  One time when I kept having a break apart problem, I found a small piece of clear plastic was stuck between the ties and was pushing up the pins under the coupler much like a uncoupler track section.  Another time a pecan fell between the rails and acted like an uncoupler Huh? Roll Eyes.

Another possibility is that there is flash on the coupler somewhere which can cause only a partial closure and the couplers come apart.  This is rare however.

Another possibility is that the locking pin does not go fully down when coupling.  In this case I remove the coupler and grasp the pin and with good pressure push it up and down in the slot.  With the coupler face open you can test for this by slowly pushing it in till the pin drops.  If it fails to drop or only drops partially, you will know what the problem is.

Unwanted separation problems occasionally happen on most brands of knuckle couplers.  Folks often use the hook and loop couplers because they do not come apart while the train is rolling along, but they can be a pain getting apart.  My personal preference is knuckle couplers because I do not like the looks of the hook and loop couplers.  If you will not be doing a lot of switching you could install the hook and loop couplers for the best reliability.

Keep looking and you will find the reason.  If all else fails put the hook and loops on the passenger cars or try the painting trick.

Bill
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Loco Bill,  Roundhouse Foreman
Colorado & Kansas Railway Missouri Western Railway
Semi Official Historian; Bachmann Large Scale
There are no dumb or stupid questions, just questions!
zubi


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« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2015, 08:41:17 PM »

Punkin, great choice of a car! Use hook and loop couplers. They are reliable. Bachmann makes them too, you can fit them on your locomotive. Knuckle couplers mean trouble. If you insist on knuckles, LGB also makes them, but my advice is stick with hook and loop! Best wishes from Tokyo, Zubi
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RkyGriz


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« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2015, 09:55:57 PM »

I don't like the way the hook and loop couplers look, but they're way more reliable than the knuckle couplers are. The only thing bad about them is they are not authentic and detract
from the realism of your train. I like Bills' idea of painting the knuckle couplers and am planning on eventually trying it, but I'll stick to the hook and loop couplers for now. By the way, Punkin, both types of Bachmann and LGB couplers are interchangeable meaning that LGB couplers will fit Bachmann and vice-versa.
Later!
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A Trainman

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« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2015, 09:56:49 PM »

punkin,
welcome, 
I just have to add my two cents worth.
I started using the "hook and loop" couplers with my 4-6-0s and Bachmann rolling stock. They couple together very easily and stay coupled, sometimes too well, like when you try to separate cars to put them away. Also they don't look very prototypical. Then I switched to Bachmann's "knuckle couplers". They worked OK, but sometimes became detached from each other and it took a lot of "slamming" cars together to get them both to couple.

On another note... I like switching.

The mechanisms made to unhook the "hook and loops" didn't go over to well with me.( bulky and unprototypical looking)
As for the knuckle couplers... I still had to stand up and manually trip (open) them. Although now some companies are offering radio controlled actuators to operate these.$$$
What suits me are KaDee couplers and track mounted magnets installed on the turnouts. They couple very easily and stay coupled. They also look pretty much prototypical. When I put my cars away for the night, I just lift it off the track and they release from each other. I find it very enjoyable switching cars and making up trains.

When I started in large scale I was happy just to watch them go round and round. Then I put in a siding. Than I put in a reversing track. Then to reverse it back, I put in another. Then another siding and a yard and on and on and on... Tongue

Good luck Punkin, all options are fine, what pleases you is what counts!

Once again welcome to the fun!

Adam

 
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punkin

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« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2015, 10:57:13 PM »

Thank you very much for that insight. When the caboose gets here I'll be better able to visualize what I'm working with here. I have been doing a little web searching and I am finding it quite confusing. I hear a lot of people say that the kaydee connector is the best. I went to their website and that's where my understanding falls apart. There seems to be so many part numbers and determining which device to get so that the height of the two cars lines up seems to be a big issue. Maybe once the caboose gets here it will make more sense.

Thanks to you and the other for the advice and your patience.
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Chuck N

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« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2015, 07:59:47 AM »

There are several decisions that you have to make before you choose a Kadee coupler.

1,  What is your minimum curve radius (diameter)?  If your curves are less than 8' diameter (4' radius) you will be better off with truck mounted couplers.   Above that you can use either truck mounted or body mounted couplers.

2,  If you are using truck mounted couplers, do you want a straight shank coupler #835, or a stepup #831 (this will mate with any future body mounted couplers in the future. 

3,  If you have wide radius curves, I use #830, for body mounted, but there are other choices.

Chuck
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punkin

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« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2015, 08:37:54 AM »

Thank you very much for that information Chuck N. That was very helpful  Grin
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