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Longest Passanger Car that will work with 18" turns?

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Longest Passanger Car that will work with 18" turns?
Posted by cudaken on Friday, April 13, 2018 6:07 PM

 Ruel of thumb answers only. LHS has some old Pen Pullman cars I have fell in love with, look great behinde my Pen M1A! They are from a estate and there are no boxes and we have no idea who made them.

 I have some Con Cor short passanger cars that with some work that well. They are 10" long. I am guessing the cars I want are around 12" but that is a guess.

 I am thinking about a new layout anyway, I am all so looking at adding 22" and 24" turns to the current layout. 5 cars for $75.00 seems cheap these days!

 Thanks for the coming answers folks!

 Cuda Ken

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Posted by gmpullman on Friday, April 13, 2018 6:18 PM

cudaken
They are from a estate and there are no boxes and we have no idea who made them.

Hi, Ken

You didn't mention the coupler arrangement. That is usually the first indication that a "scale-length" passenger car will stay on the track of an 18"R curve. Are they heavyweights or lightweight? Knowing this might help to ID them.

I used to have a bunch of Rivarossi cars. They would negotiate an 18" curve but, of course, look ridiculous doing so. The couplers were mounted to the trucks. (Talgo-style)

Bachmann cars used a flimsy pivoting coupler box that was pretty troublesome with a link going to the truck bolster. It worked -sometimes - but the coupler boxes would sag and the linkage would get broken easily.

IHC, similar to Rivarossi had truck-mounted couplers and would also take 18" curves OK.

Is there any way to get a photo of the bottoms of these cars, especially the truck/coupler area posted?

Con-Cor made both standard and shorty cars. These both ran OK on 18" curves, too. Couplers were not easy to replace. McHenry makes long-shank, snap-in couplers that replace the Rivarossi couplers easily.

Do you see the cars, or similar ones, anywhere here?

https://tinyurl.com/y7yl6qpd

 

Walthers Proto, Rapido, BLI, MTH will all require 22" radius curves.

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Friday, April 13, 2018 9:28 PM

I have two sets of passenger cars.  The first are ancient Mantua/Tyco streamliners, with real aluminum bodies.

The streamliners still have their original trucks with Talgo couplers, although I've replaced the horn-hooks with Kadees.

My other set is from Rivarossi.

These cars have body-mounted couplers in swing-boxes to negotiate 18-inch curves.  18, not 17 7/8, as I found.  I ended up re-laying a curve to get to 18 when I found they would not make it otherwise.

Well, I get through the Walthers flyer a lot quicker when I don't have to spend time drooling over passenger cars because I know they won't run on my layout.

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

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Posted by IRONROOSTER on Friday, April 13, 2018 10:12 PM

MisterBeasley
These cars have body-mounted couplers in swing-boxes to negotiate 18-inch curves. 18, not 17 7/8, as I found.

This is a good point.  Trying to run on the absolute minimum curve requires very careful track work. 

I always try to get cars and locomotives to operate on curves a little sharper than what's going to be on the layout.  Or try to add an inch or two to the curves.  While I'm always fussy about my trackwork, a little fudge room is nice to have.

Paul

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Posted by CNCharlie on Saturday, April 14, 2018 12:16 AM

Hi Ken,

Athearn heavyweights will go around 19"curves with no problem and I imagine they would be fine on 18". I have a set of them and left the talgo trucks so they would work on tight curves.  There aren't any markings underneath so perhaps those cars are Athearn. 

CN Charlie

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Posted by steemtrayn on Saturday, April 14, 2018 2:46 AM

 Walthers Mainline cars are full-length, and take 18", no problem.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atvGIDpxVNg

 

 

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Posted by BroadwayLion on Saturday, April 14, 2018 10:16 AM

DEPENDS on the placement of the trucks and couplers.

Couplers that swivel with the trucks will handle a curve better, but then it also depends on how close to the end of the car the trucks are placed. On Riverossi Heavyweights the pivot point is not in the middle of the truck but closer to the distal end giving it more ability on the curves. The penalty with this is the mid car overhang is increased and will take out more of the wayside. You will have to account for that when planting trees, signals and little puppy dogs.

 

ROAR

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Posted by cudaken on Saturday, April 14, 2018 8:07 PM

 Thanks for the answers folks!

 Far as the couplers, they are body mounted and look like Kaddee #5's. I know I will have to install long shank couplers to stand any kind of chances of making a tight turn.

 Clues to who made the cars. First they are lite cars with wipers installed on the trucks touching the axles. They have full one color interiors. Underside looked pretty detailed but not super detailed.

 I knew this was not going to be a simple question to answer. I will see if I can get more details on the cars.

 Thanks again, Ken

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Posted by gmpullman on Monday, April 16, 2018 9:06 AM

cudaken
LHS has some old Pen Pullman cars I have fell in love with,

Isn't there any track at K10 Hobby Shop that is 18" radius so that you can try the cars out before you buy them? Even a few pieces of Bachmann EZ track plopped on the counter would tell you something about how they will handle a curve.

Afterall, that should be one of the advantages of buying from a B&M shop, I would say.

Good Luck, Ed

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Posted by Heartland Division CB&Q on Monday, April 16, 2018 9:20 AM

.... and the real answer ....... 

 

 

 

Laugh  Whistling  

GARRY

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Posted by cudaken on Monday, April 16, 2018 9:35 PM

 Bite me Gary! Smile, Wink & Grin

 Ed I will ask, but I would be surprised if he does. One hope is the other passangers cars in the estate sale are short cars like my Con Cor set. But, I was all so told the x onwer bought stuff, but never ran them?

 Guess I will se this week when I go back to K-10.

 Later, Ken

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Posted by Heartland Division CB&Q on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 11:14 AM

Ken.  LOL ... I decided to use the Diner for any further razzng to respect those who actually think this is a serious hobby .

Confused  

GARRY

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Posted by LensCapOn on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 12:59 PM

I am in N. Pretty much everything takes an 18" turn nicely. (running away now)

 

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Posted by jjdamnit on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 2:19 PM

Hello all,

On my 4'x8' pike I have asymmetrical curves made up of three 15-inch radius sectional track and three 18-inch radius sectional track to form the ends of the lower oval.

All of my turnouts are Snap Switches (roughly #4's) and PECO #2's.

I can run three 85-foot Bachmann passenger cars; a full dome care flanked by smooth sided passenger cars, powerd by an F7 A-B-B consist with an F7 A on the rear on this track arrangement and through the Snap Switches but not the #2's.

But, and it's a big but...

They look ridiculous!

Even with the body mounted swing type couplers the overhang between cars is extreme to say the least.

If these cars had diaphragms they would be torn from the bodies. 

On the other end of the spectrum I run Olde Tyme 47-foot passenger cars; even through the #2 trunouts on the Wye, with no problems.

This train consists of a 0-6-0 USRA locomotive with a Vanderbuilt tender (converted to oil) a combine car, two passenger cars and a bobber caboose.

If the steam motive power breaks down I have a 70-ton that I can put on the head end and a 44-ton as a helper in place of the 0-6-0 Side Tank Porter at the rear.

This train runs down the historic wooden spiral trestle made with 15-inch radii sectional track with no problems.

Hope this helps.

 

"Uhh...I didn’t know it was 'impossible' I just made it work...sorry"

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Posted by wjstix on Tuesday, April 17, 2018 4:05 PM

I'd say with an 80' long passenger car (which in HO would be about 11-1/4" long) with body-mounted KD No.5's, 24" radius might be sharpest you could do. Walthers cars will do 24"R but they have a special coupler arrangement so the coupler can swing pretty far side to side. My guess would be whoever owned these cars probably ran them on 30"R curves - or larger.

That doesn't mean you can't use them, but you'd need to do more than add longer couplers. You'll probably need to replace them with truck-mounted "talgo" couplers or a body-mounted coupler with a lot of lateral swing to it.

BTW I like the old AHM / Rivarossi passenger cars, they often show up at RR flea markets and train shows for around $10-20 and can all do 18"R curves. The later runs of them under the Rivarossi name even had interiors.

Stix
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Posted by cudaken on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 9:56 PM

 Again thanks for the answers!

 Going to ask if the LHS have any 18 turns I can try them on.

 Maybe I will buy them Thusday, I will let you folks know.

 Ken

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Posted by wjstix on Thursday, April 19, 2018 10:52 AM

AHM/Rivarossi did offer some lighted cars with wipers on the trucks/axles.

If they are AHM/Rivarossi, they'll have Rivarossi (probably with "Made in Italy") molded on the bottom.

If the roof is a separate removeable piece, they're probably AHM/Rivarossi, or IHC. 

If the interior is all one color, it's probably Rivarossi. IHC interiors had several parts usually, in different colors.

If you have a cell phone / camera, you could take pics and post them here. Most likely someone could tell what they are by looking at them.  

BTW I assume when you say they are "Pen" you mean Pennsylvania RR. "Penn" or "Pennsy" (or "PRR") would be used more often as an abbreviation in railfan / modeller circles. Wink

Stix
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Posted by cudaken on Thursday, April 19, 2018 5:45 PM

 Stixs, I looked on the bottom and saw no name. There are coupler pockets on the bottom of the cars. I had a set of Rivarossi Am Track cars that where junk. But much longer cars and I was new at the time. I do not remember there being coupler pockets at the time I had them.

 Far as photos, after Photo Bucket be came money happy I cannot post photos.

 I will let you folks know if I buy them Friday.

 Thanks again, Ken

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Posted by BMMECNYC on Thursday, April 19, 2018 7:09 PM

Ken,

Physical Length in inches:

x2 = Some cars will track properly (can get dicey).

x2.5 = Most cars will track properly if all the same length

x3 = Almost all cars will track properly if 50% coupler swing width is allowed.

x3.5 = Cars look better from Inside curve (minimum for touching diaphragm and tightlock couplers with near scale draft gear box)

x4 = Cars look better from Outside Curve

x5 = Kadees should couple when body mounted

*x2 = Sergent couplers will couple, because no centering spring

Typically most passenger cars are "designed" to run on 24" and greater.  Cutting away the center sill and long shanks will allow somewhat tighter curves.

Most of this is not original research on my part, but the source is available free online.

Rule 108: In case of doubt or uncertainty, the safe course must be taken.
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Posted by cudaken on Friday, April 20, 2018 6:10 PM

 OK Folks, I bought them! They are Bachmann Spectium coaches and the coupler pockets swing. While my 18" turns do not seem to be a problem, but everthing eles is. I have not checked coupler hight yet nor wheel gauge. Obversion cars seems to be the problem car at this point.

 I knew it would take some work to get them runing right. But I am still happy.

 Ken

I hate Rust

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