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Screws to attach trucks to old accurail hoppers

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  • Member since
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  • From: Columbia, IL
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Screws to attach trucks to old accurail hoppers
Posted by wdcrvr on Monday, July 22, 2019 10:48 AM

Bought a 6 pack of 55 ton hoppers by Accurail.  Didn't realize how old this was until I saw a "1995" date on the instruction sheet.  First problem: couplers are plastic non-operational junk.  Easy fix.  2nd problem: plastic wheels, which I don't like.  Easy fix.  3rd issue:  trucks are to be atached using plastic "press fit" pins.  I am concerned that I would have future problems if I need to remove a truck for repair, replacement etc in the future.  Is there a standard size screw that I can use to attach these trucks or do I need to take a car body and truck to hardware store and do the test fit process?  I really like the level of detail of these cars, but the above listed issues leave me a bit disappointed.  I hope accurail kits have improved since 1995.

 

Thanks

wdcrvr

  • Member since
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  • From: Milwaukee WI (Fox Point)
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Posted by dknelson on Monday, July 22, 2019 10:58 AM

My press-fit Accurails have held up OK over the years - if you do it up right the first time it is not often you need to remove trucks.  I decided I'd investigate alternatives if and when the press-fits fail.  I also have laid in a small supply of the press fit thingees.  

At least it is a press fit that holds the truck fairly firmly onto the car bolster since the head fits into the round opening in the truck bolster, as opposed to the old AHM press fit which was just a button shaped thing that held the trucks onto the car but did not really stabilize them.  (Having said that, AHM from time to time would use metal buttons with lightly ribbed shafts rather than plastic with smooth shafts; the metal ones were and are more durable if you did happen to want to remove the trucks now and then).  

Dave Nelson

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Posted by CGW121 on Monday, July 22, 2019 11:03 AM

I use 2-56 screws that I got off Amazon. I got the Phillips head, 1/4" should fit your needs.

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  • From: Reading, PA
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Posted by rrinker on Monday, July 22, 2019 11:25 AM

 The new ones come with screws. And knuckle couplers, but Kadees are still better.

I'm just happy they still make kits.

                 --Randy


Modeling the Reading Railroad in the 1950's

 

Visit my web site at www.readingeastpenn.com for construction updates, DCC Info, and more.

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Posted by jjdamnit on Monday, July 22, 2019 12:39 PM

Hello All,

Take a piece of solid styrene rod and cement it in the hole.

You might have to enlarge the original hole with a sharp drill bit. I would not use a power drill, I would just use my fingers or possibly a T-handle used for tapping.

Once dry, file the plug flush. Drill and tap the hole with at 2/56 tap.

Now you are ready to use a 2/56 screw to attach the trucks. 

Hope this helps.

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

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  • From: St. Paul
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Posted by garya on Monday, July 22, 2019 1:50 PM

jjdamnit

Hello All,

Take a piece of solid styrene rod and cement it in the hole.

You might have to enlarge the original hole with a sharp drill bit. I would not use a power drill, I would just use my fingers or possibly a T-handle used for tapping.

Once dry, file the plug flush. Drill and tap the hole with at 2/56 tap.

Now you are ready to use a 2/56 screw to attach the trucks. 

Hope this helps.

 

No need for styrene rod--the hole is already the right size for a 2-56 screw.  Just run the tap in.  Or just use the screw to cut threads.

CGW121

I use 2-56 screws that I got off Amazon. I got the Phillips head, 1/4" should fit your needs.

 

Or 3/16" for trucks.  I drill a hole in the coupler cover and use a 2-56 1/8" screw to hold the cover on.  Kadee #148s fit Accurail boxes; the spring for a #5 may have to be trimmed to fit.

Gary

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Posted by Graham Line on Monday, July 22, 2019 3:49 PM

If you have the tap, use it. It's much less likely to cause a problem than forcing a 2-56 to cut its own threads. That process can stretch the peg, causing it to crack or the truck to bind as it pivots.

Also, some "plastic" wheels are styrene, which is unsuitable. But others are Delrin, which wears better and can be a reasonable choice.

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Posted by saronaterry on Monday, July 22, 2019 6:04 PM

garya

 

 
jjdamnit

Hello All,

Take a piece of solid styrene rod and cement it in the hole.

You might have to enlarge the original hole with a sharp drill bit. I would not use a power drill, I would just use my fingers or possibly a T-handle used for tapping.

Once dry, file the plug flush. Drill and tap the hole with at 2/56 tap.

Now you are ready to use a 2/56 screw to attach the trucks. 

Hope this helps.

 

 

 

No need for styrene rod--the hole is already the right size for a 2-56 screw.  Just run the tap in.  Or just use the screw to cut threads.

 

 
CGW121

I use 2-56 screws that I got off Amazon. I got the Phillips head, 1/4" should fit your needs.

 

 

 

Or 3/16" for trucks.  I drill a hole in the coupler cover and use a 2-56 1/8" screw to hold the cover on.  Kadee #148s fit Accurail boxes; the spring for a #5 may have to be trimmed to fit.

 

Plus 1

Terry

Terry in NW Wisconsin

Queenbogey715 is my Youtube channel

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Posted by garya on Monday, July 22, 2019 10:21 PM

Graham Line

Also, some "plastic" wheels are styrene, which is unsuitable. But others are Delrin, which wears better and can be a reasonable choice.

Accurail kits from about 1997 on have delrin wheelsets.  Older kits have plastic wheelsets.  I like Intermountain metal wheels for my freightcars but I used up my bulk pack, so I tried the delrin wheels.  I was surprised.  They roll really well. 

Gary

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Posted by PC101 on Tuesday, July 23, 2019 12:37 AM

If you use screws, use brass ones. They will not be attracted to between the rail or under the ties uncoupling magnets. Non steel axels are a good thing to have also.

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Posted by CGW121 on Tuesday, July 23, 2019 8:23 AM

How strong are the magnets you use?

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Posted by wdcrvr on Tuesday, July 23, 2019 4:09 PM

Thanks for all the responses.  I think for now I will use the plastic plugs to attach the trucks and if I ever have to remove them I will switch to screws at that time.  This is assuming that no one is going to tell me that removing them will be a problem?

Thanks

wdcrvr

  • Member since
    April, 2011
  • From: About 20 minutes from IRM
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Posted by CGW121 on Tuesday, July 23, 2019 4:22 PM

It can be. When you have to remove the trucks some do not come out easily others way to easy. I have had them dror out when running a train which will cause a derailment. It would be my advice to use the screws sooner rather than later. 

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Posted by PC101 on Tuesday, July 23, 2019 8:37 PM

CGW121

How strong are the magnets you use?

 

On the Magnet issue - Kadee #308 below the ties, #321 between the rails for code 100 and #322 between the rails for code 83. But I really think the magnets drew the steel axels the most. 

On the screw issue - If you do not have taps, and I would not know why you would not have them, I have done this at times, file a flat section on the screw threads from end to head with more threads removed closer to the end. If you look at the end/tip of the screw it will look like a ''D'', the flat being the removed threads. The screw will now cut threads in the plastic.   

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  • 27 posts
Posted by Mmbushnell on Saturday, July 27, 2019 7:33 AM

CGW121

I use 2-56 screws that I got off Amazon. I got the Phillips head, 1/4" should fit your needs. 

 

For what it's worth, MicroFasteners offers a packaged assortment of small "American" threaded fasteners for model railroaders, available in both brass and steel, at a reasonable price.  They are handy to have in your parts inventory.  

https://www.microfasteners.com/fastener-assortments-small-fastener-assortments-for-trains.html

//  Michael

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Posted by CGW121 on Saturday, July 27, 2019 10:48 AM

I have an assortment of fine threded screws, most of which I bought off Amazon, cause I use Amazon a lot. I use steel and I would doubt that uncoupling magnets would have any affect at all on steel screws, as opposed to brass.

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Posted by Autonerd on Sunday, August 04, 2019 11:20 PM

I've never lost one of the plugs but I have replaced them with 2-56 screws. They are better at securing the trucks.

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