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O scale autocouplers

 
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Blackcloud Railways



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2052
Location: Sandbach UK

PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 9:40 pm    Post subject: O scale autocouplers Reply with quote

Using OO scale Tri-ang couplings on O scale Tri-and wagons. Why? Simple, because I'm fed up of fiddling about with three link couplings when shunting.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-y8bqFEcY5s

Seems to work quite well so I'll be fitting the rest of my O scale standard gauge stock with similar couplings. The kit build wagons should not be a problem, likewise the 060T, but my Y6 might require wire loops fitting instead of Tri-ang couplers.
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Bob Hughes
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giles b



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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Location: London

PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not that you'll need it on such a small layout, but are you thinking of modifying them to uncouple automatically?
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Blackcloud Railways



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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Location: Sandbach UK

PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been giving the locos some thought overnight. I reckon fitting both with a loop of bent paperclip wire will be easier than adding a coupling (and look less obtrusive).

Automatic uncoupling? With the couplers mounted just below buffer level in O scale they're a lot further from the track than the usual OO scale mounting height. It would not be possible to add mechanical ramps to operate the existing tails and the KISS principle means I'm not going to start adding droppers for low level ramps or magnets.

Automatic coupling is a big plus when compared to fiddling with, and squinting at, three links. On the down side I'll not be able to propel uncoupled wagons from the fiddleyard and drop them in the sidings but the hands on bit to unhook them is going to be a lot easier than the hands on bit with hooking up three links. Swings and roundabouts but I think the automatic coupling far outweighs the manual uncoupling that will be needed.
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Bob Hughes
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giles b



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're probably right, Bob. I reckon than O scale is large enough for a human hand and shunting pole to be acceptable.
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Jordan



Joined: 27 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

giles b wrote:
You're probably right, Bob. I reckon than O scale is large enough for a human hand and shunting pole to be acceptable.

Looking at the YouTube clip, I thought how much easier it was to uncouple the tension-locks than on 4mm stock, precisely because of the extra space underneath them.
I'm no fan of them myself, but they suit O as much as any other 'auto' coupling available.
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Blackcloud Railways



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
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Location: Sandbach UK

PostPosted: Wed Mar 27, 2013 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've got some more couplers on order, they're all the old Tri-ang steel type so, providing all the wagons are well weighted, I should be able to use a small magnet to lift the hooks. This is even easier than getting a spade underneath them to lift the tails but, as Jordan mentioned, there is a lot more room to play about under the couplings in O scale.

I've fitted both locos with plain wire loops, these are hardly noticeable when painted black. Also, on the topic of painting, that awful red Tri-ang 16T mineral is now in a rusty grey finish and looks much better for it.
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Bob Hughes
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Once there were mountains on mountains and once there were sunbirds to soar with and once I could never be down.
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Blackcloud Railways



Joined: 25 Oct 2006
Posts: 2052
Location: Sandbach UK

PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


All nine wagons now fitted with tension locks, plus both locos fitted with wire loops. The 060T would have taken tension locks the same as the wagons but looks better with just a wire loop and the tram loco has its loop fitted between the rails of the cowcatcher. From normal viewing distance the couplings are hardly noticeable so I'm quite pleased with the conversion, and no more squinting at three links while trying to get them on the hooks!

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Bob Hughes
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giles b



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PostPosted: Thu Apr 04, 2013 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's good you can still buffer up even with the Hornby couplers in place; looks like the distance isn't much greater when hauling the wagons. Excellent result, I'd say.
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Jordan



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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Leaving the 3-links in place is good too - the links hanging down are still noticeable below the buffers Cool although the fact both sets are hanging down might confuse people who don't look closely enough... Razz
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Blackcloud Railways



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PostPosted: Fri Apr 05, 2013 5:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The loops do not actually touch when propelling, but are close enough together for the hooks to engage before the buffers meet. This close coupling might cause a problem on tight curves, but there aren't any on Lyddlow Mill.

Leaving the three link couplers in place means I can always remove the tension locks should I decide to get rid of my O scale stock at any time... However unlikely that may be.
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