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Proto 2000 couplers help

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Proto 2000 couplers help
Posted by Gary Morton on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 2:14 PM

Relative newbie here, so please have patience!

I've bought 2 sets of Proto 2000 F7 A & B units (new, from sellers on eBay), and although the boxes state "Fully Assembled," the couplers are not assembled; each consists of 6 tiny parts. The assembly instructions are not only useless, they're contradictory --- they read, "align the couplers and coupler boxes as shown in the exploded view and tighten the screws to the chassis."

Both couplers are shown on the exploded view. The six parts are coupler box top plate, coupler box body, coupler and shank, a circular spring, and the coupler box bottom plate. On one of the exploded drawings the spring is shown between the coupler body and the coupler shank. On the other drawing the spring is shown between the bottom plate and the body. Which is it, or are they actually different?

It is also impossible to "tighten the screw to the chassis." That is because two of the other parts --- the body and bottom plate --- are both threaded, and the screw bottoms out against those threads long before it tightens to the chassis.

Also, at both ends of the unit there is a stiff wire stretched across the gap in the chassis frame through which the coupler shank extends. It is impossible to place the assembled coupler through the gap below this wire, which means the coupler must be assembled while trying to work below this wire, or the wire must be removed. These wires, BTW, are not shown on the drawing. Do these wires serve any purpose?

If anyone has assembled one of these turkeys and is satisfied they got it right I'd appreciate your advice!

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Posted by cowman on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 4:33 PM

Welcome to the forums.

Sorry, can't help you with the couplers that came with your loco (sound like a nightmare).  You could go to the Kadee coupler web site and see if they list one of their couplers for that unit.  I have had good luck and they give both a description and drawing of any modifications you may need to make.

Good luck,

Richard

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Posted by Graham Line on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 5:34 PM

I discard the couplers that come with Proto locomotives and use Kadees. Their most recent coupler boxes snap together, reducing the need to have three hands to assemble a car. They also produce a Delrin 2-56 screw which can be cut to length, solving the bottom-out problem.

I don't see the F7 in Kadee's list of recommended conversions, so someone who has experience with the model will have to chime in with that.

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 7:25 PM

Welcome

.

I also suggest you contact Kadee, the coupler people. They are very helpful and will get you on the track very soon. I have never had anything but good relations with them.

.

I am sorry you have problems with these models right now. I hope once you have good Kadee couplers installed you enjoy them a lot.

.

-Kevin

.

Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 9:34 PM

I'm looking at the exploded view as I type this, on HOseeker.  I'd like to link to it, but linking anything on HOseeker doesn't seem to work.

So, It's looks like the front coupler is different then the rear.  I'm guessing the longer shank coupler goes on the front.  The front has what appears is the brass plate with the springy things on the side, like many types of Kadee couplers, and the rear coupler looks like what your asking about, a seperate little circular spring that goes between the bottom plate and the coupler box.

I'm guessing that the little vertical prongs on that spring, surround the coupler shank.  One on each side.

I'm not gettin the "stiff wire" thing your talking about.

I have a NOS, still in the boxes, E6, A & B, not sure if they are the same.  I'll have to look.

Not much help, just trying to think this through with your info.

http://hoseeker.net/lit.html

Mike.

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 10:09 PM

I, too, would recommend contacting Kadee.  All of my locomotives get Kadee couplers right after they've taken a few loops around the layout to verify that they work.  I put Kadees on my rolling stock, too, but sometimes I get lazy, knowing that sooner or later the OEM couplers will fail and I'll have to replace them anyway.  (It's usually sooner, by the way.)

You might get a complete exploded diagram for these locomotives by contacting Walthers.  I've sent them e-mails a few times and they send back a PDF file with the instructions.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

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Posted by gmpullman on Wednesday, December 06, 2017 10:58 PM

Gary Morton
I've bought 2 sets of Proto 2000 F7 A & B units

Are you sure they are Proto 2000? **

I was always under the impression they were 1000.

Kadee has this to say about the Proto 1000 F3A

https://kadee.com/conv/pdf/l340.pdf

 I have many EMD F's in HO but none are Protos. The E units on the other hand seemed like they have different coupler mounting arrangements with each "run" they did. Finally, after the Walthers re-design, Kadee couplers are a "drop-in" fit.

If you Google "Proto 1000 F3 coupler" you will find some old M-R threads plus others. Unfortunately, after the PhotoBucket Purge many of the needed photos have vaporized.


 

** I stand corrected, I now see that the F7 locomotives in question are indeed Proto 2000 Embarrassed  Senior moment, I admit.

Can you post a photo of your coupler mount? It almost sounds like, with the coupler box and cover "threaded" that maybe someone put an over-sized screw in there already and, thus, made deformed "threads" into the plastic.

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Thursday, December 07, 2017 7:51 AM

gmpullman
Gary Morton
I've bought 2 sets of Proto 2000 F7 A & B units 

Are you sure they are Proto 2000? **

I was always under the impression they were 1000.


 

 ** I stand corrected, I now see that the F7 locomotives in question are indeed Proto 2000 Embarrassed  Senior moment, I admit.

Good Luck, Ed 

Yeppers.  If I recall correctly, the Proto 2000 F7's didn't come out until Walthers acquired the Life Like proto products.

I bought an ABBA set of single stripe D&RGW F7's in the new Walthers era Proto 2000 line, since to this date, Athearn Genesis and Stewart has never offered a single stripe Rio Grande phase I F7 - surprising as it is.  Athearn Genesis did a single stripe phase II F7 set but not phase I.

When the Proto 2000 F7's came out, they made quite a splash - the red/silver ATSF warbonnet were popular and Walthers made the green/orange F7's for it's Empire Builder passenger train - nicely detailed with plow and winterized fan hatch.

I haven't tried converting my P2K F7's to Kadee yet as they have been in storage but hope to next year but finshing the basement and layout building will be priority in the coming year.

Rio Grande.  The Action Road

Contrarian's contrarian
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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Thursday, December 07, 2017 3:38 PM

To the OP, since no one has answered your question, if you can be patient, I will get a set of mine out and refresh my memory and possibly take a photo or two.

But basically I know this for sure, the Proto coupler is just like a Kadee coupler and you assemble the coupler in the box and install the screw. Not sure I understand the details of your dificulty until I take a look at mine.

To all others, nothing from Kadee will solve his problem, the loco comes with Kadee ready coupler boxes and Proto2000 couplers which are by far the best Kadee clone and use a bronze spring like a #5 Kadee.

And yes Walthers Proto2000 has EMD F units, that came out WELL after Walthers bought the line from Life Like.

More later when I can get out to the train room.

Sheldon

    

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Posted by maxman on Thursday, December 07, 2017 5:00 PM

mbinsewi
I'm looking at the exploded view as I type this, on HOseeker. I'd like to link to it, but linking anything on HOseeker doesn't seem to work.

I can get to the LifeLike F7A and B diagrams at HOSeeker, but I don't see the couplers or assembly notes on any of the sheets.

Regarding the flat spring, all the Kadee and Kadee clone coupler diagrams I've seen show the spring on top of the coupler, between the coupler shank and the bottom of the loco.

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Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, December 07, 2017 5:21 PM

maxman
I can get to the LifeLike F7A and B diagrams at HOSeeker, but I don't see the couplers or assembly notes on any of the sheets. Regarding the flat spring, all the Kadee and Kadee clone coupler diagrams I've seen show the spring on top of the coupler, between the coupler shank and the bottom of the loco.

Sheet 5 shows the exploded view, and detail 8A shows the front coupler and rear coupler assemblies.  The front is different than the rear.  The front uses the flat brass spring and the rear uses a round spring with 2 little prongs that go on each side of the coupler shank.

I have no idea what the wire thing is the OP is talking about.  I'm wondering if he took off the plastic protectors on each end, as you use the same screw that holds them in place, to attach the coupler box assemblies.

I'm waiting to see what Sheldon comes up with.

Mike.

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Posted by zstripe on Thursday, December 07, 2017 5:48 PM

The Walthers Proto F3 A's I got 3yrs. ago came with everything assembled including couplers which are Protomax couplers and look and operate just like a Kadee coupler......no need to change anything. The wire You are speaking of is the cut lever linkage and should not interfere with the couplers movement, even when installing. I don't have a clue why Your's are the way they are......a pic' would help.

A shot of the front of one of mine:

Here's a shot of the side.....It is the long bonnet version...all close coupled with Kadee 1/4 shank couplers for close coupling with Diaphragms:

Good Luck! Big Smile

Frank

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Posted by mbinsewi on Thursday, December 07, 2017 9:59 PM

zstripe
The wire You are speaking of is the cut lever linkage and should not interfere with the couplers movement, even when installing. I don't have a clue why Your's are the way they are......a pic' would help.

I thought of that too, Frank, but if they are NOS, as the OP suggest, you have to add those during final assembly.  The couplers and cut levers are added after you put the body shell on the chassis.

And I'm thinking even if the levers are there, since they go over the coupler, it shouldn't interfere with removing and attaching the shell.

Mike.

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Posted by maxman on Friday, December 08, 2017 7:58 AM

mbinsewi
Sheet 5 shows the exploded view, and detail 8A shows the front coupler and rear coupler assemblies. The front is different than the rear.

Okay, I'm seeing it now.  If anyone is interested in looking, here's how to get to the diagram:

Go to http://hoseeker.org/. Note that this is .org, not .com

On left side menu click on "Literature".  A page should open with all the manufacturers.  Scroll down to "LifeLike" and click there.

Another page should open with a bunch of LifeLike catalogs and a catalog with an exploded view steam loco on the front top center.

At the bottom of that you'll see "engine diagrams/part numbers".  That has a drop down menu.  Click on that and scroll down to F7A Proto 2000 5.  Click that and the exploded view should open.

The front coupler looks like the assembly of a Kadee 5 (or Kadee clone).  The rear coupler, with that hairspring thing, looks like an exploded view of another Kadee, possibly a #4 (but I'm not certain of the KD number.

That curved wire thing is the actuating wire that inserts into the assembly and holds it together.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Friday, December 08, 2017 8:57 AM

maxman

 

 

 
mbinsewi
Sheet 5 shows the exploded view, and detail 8A shows the front coupler and rear coupler assemblies. The front is different than the rear.

 

Okay, I'm seeing it now.  If anyone is interested in looking, here's how to get to the diagram:

Go to http://hoseeker.org/. Note that this is .org, not .com

On left side menu click on "Literature".  A page should open with all the manufacturers.  Scroll down to "LifeLike" and click there.

Another page should open with a bunch of LifeLike catalogs and a catalog with an exploded view steam loco on the front top center.

At the bottom of that you'll see "engine diagrams/part numbers".  That has a drop down menu.  Click on that and scroll down to F7A Proto 2000 5.  Click that and the exploded view should open.

The front coupler looks like the assembly of a Kadee 5 (or Kadee clone).  The rear coupler, with that hairspring thing, looks like an exploded view of another Kadee, possibly a #4 (but I'm not certain of the KD number.

That curved wire thing is the actuating wire that inserts into the assembly and holds it together.

 

 

Yes, the front coupler is equal to #5, the rear coupler is equal to a "#30 series" Kadee, which uses that wound spring. Here is the Kadee diagram, much easier to see:

https://kadee.com/htmbord/page33.htm

Again, I have set of these, the older ones shipped without the couplers installed, I will try to post some photos later.

Hope the OP is still out there......

Sheldon

    

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Friday, December 08, 2017 10:19 PM

OK, it was just as I suspected, here are some photos:

Proto2000 F7, new in the box from a few years back.

Shipping blocks attached to coupler mounts.

Rear coupler parts

Front coupler parts

Rear coupler spring installed in coupler box

Assembled couplers

Yes it is a fussy job, especially the rear one.

Works like this:

Install spring into shallow side of box with ends stuck through to the deep side as shown. Install cover with large hole onto spring side of coupler box.

Position small hole cover on couple pad of locomotive, line up screw holes.

Without moving the cover, position the coupler to line up with the holes, sliding it under the coupler lift bar (wire).

With tweezers or small pliers position coupler box over the end of the coupler. install the screw, wiggle it around to line up holes and then start into threaded hole.

Make sure parts line up, tighten screw, there you have it!

Close coupled F units

Sheldon

PS - the coupler box is not threaded, but it is a snug fit for the screw.

 

    

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Sunday, December 10, 2017 11:40 AM

So, I guess the OP solved his problem or is simply MIA?

Patience seems to be a lost art these days?

Or did he get frustrated with all the guesses?

There is this really nice guy on the GRAVELY tractor forum, which is part of a much larger tractor forum group. He is really knowledgeable......about a John Deere, or whatever.......But a GRAVELY is a unique design, never copied by others.......his "answers" are always out in left field?

Why do people do that?

When I don't know something, I keep quiet......

Maybe I should simply spend my time differently.......

Sheldon

    

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Sunday, December 10, 2017 1:24 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
A GRAVELY is a unique design, never copied by others.

.

Is Gravely the Pennsylvania Railroad of the antique tractor world?

.

Stick out tongue

.

-Kevin

.

Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Sunday, December 10, 2017 3:38 PM

SeeYou190

 

 
ATLANTIC CENTRAL
A GRAVELY is a unique design, never copied by others.

 

.

Is Gravely the Pennsylvania Railroad of the antique tractor world?

.

Stick out tongue

.

-Kevin

.

 

You could say that, depends on your idea of antique? My GRAVELY was made in 1995......

But the GRAVELY 4 wheel riding tractor is a very unique design among heavy duty garden tractors. It is a gear drive (not hydrostatic), rear engine/cast iron transaxle design with no belts between the engine and the wheels, or between the engine and the PTO. In fact the engine is bolted to the transaxle and the gear drive PTO comes out the front of the transaxle.

It has two clutches, one for forward, one for reverse, it has 8 forward speed ranges and 4 reverse speed ranges, and it goes instantly from forward to reverse with the motion of a pedal or lever, depending on the year/model.

And a whole lot of things about it are nothing like other garden tractors.

It weighs 1500 lbs set up for mowing as in the middle picture above and it will clear a 30" snowfall without any trouble.

These pictures are all recent, it is 22 years old and ready for the next 20-30 years.

When I bought it I told the wife it was the only garden tractor we would ever have to buy (it was expensive) - she laughed then, she believes now......

My tractor has over 30 custom inprovements (most very minor), most designed and built by me, on which I have written two booklets and sold parts for years now. But if you ask me about a green tractor I will say "I don't know, never owned one...."

Sheldon

    

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Tuesday, December 12, 2017 2:52 PM

ATLANTIC CENTRAL
You could say that, depends on your idea of antique?

.

I thought you had an antique tractor. My mistake. Three of the service engineers in my office restore old tractors.

.

Is that an Onan Performer engine in the chassis?

.

-Kevin

.

Happily modeling the STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD located in a world of plausible nonsense set in August, 1954.

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Posted by ATLANTIC CENTRAL on Tuesday, December 12, 2017 3:54 PM

Well, mine is only 22 years old, and represents the last version of the 4 wheel tractor made. They stopped making them in 2001. But it is based on same transaxle they introduced in 1973.

The engine on my tractor is an 18hp Kohler Magnum Twin. GRAVELY did use Onan engines on these at first. GRAVELY and Onan were owned by Studebaker Worthington in the 60's, 70's and early 80's. But by the late 80's Studebaker was desolved, GRAVELY sold to Ariens, and the new owners at Onan were not so interested in the garden tractor market.

So GRAVELY turned to Kohler who had always provided engines for the single cylinder GRAVELY models.

One last 24hp GRAVELY model was Onan Performer powered from 1989 to 1991.

GRAVELY is also famous for their two wheel walk behind tractors which date back to 1936. My father had both 2 and 4 wheel GRAVELY'S when I was a child.

Sheldon

    

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