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Long or Short shank couplers

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Long or Short shank couplers
Posted by COREY CHERIZARD on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 7:35 PM

I've searched the internet far and wide for an answer to my question, but have found nothing. So I turn to you, whoever's reading this.

I have an old Bachmann N Scale train set with the old Rapido couplers, I know that they need to be replaced with Microtrains couplers but I don't know whether they need to be long shank or short shank couplers.

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Posted by davidmurray on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 7:43 PM

Cory:  I don't know, I'm in HO.

Part of the answer will be what radius curves you use, part whether they are body or truck mounted, and the length of the cars.  More info will help more knowledgeable people than me help you.

 

David Murray from Oshawa, Ontario Canada
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Posted by Medina1128 on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 9:40 PM

I'm modeling in HO and had been running Kadee #5's as my default locomotive coupler until I started noticing locomotives uncoupling randomly. Upon closer examination, I noticed that the trip pins pressing against the snowplows of the adjacent locomotive, pressing the knuckle open. I replaced all of the couplers on locomotives with snowplows with longer shank couplers. Problem solved.

 

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Posted by NVSRR on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 9:47 PM

Microscale has converstion tables on thier site specifying which coupler to use. 

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Posted by wjstix on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 9:19 AM

I would try installing whichever couplers you normally use, like on your freight cars, on two of the passenger cars and see how they work. If you normally use shorter shank couplers and you find they don't give enough separation, you can try the longer ones.

FWIW on Walthers HO passenger cars, I find the best spacing is to use regular Kadee 5's on the rear of the car and long-shank no. 5's on the front. The regular no. 5's couple too close together (even for my 30"R curves) but using just long-shanks spacing the cars way too far apart. One of each works best for me.

Stix
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Posted by floridaflyer on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 9:57 AM

what stix said. We have a club member that does exactly that and it works fine. He does have to orient the cars so a short matches up with a long.

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 10:19 AM

I've been out of the N scale loop for many years but am collecting some N during the past year.  Pretty much everything I have bought has MT couplers already.

But why long vs. short?  Doesn't MT make medium shank couplers?

Rio Grande.  The Action Road  - Focus 1977-1983

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Posted by wjstix on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 11:02 AM

I use a paint marker-pen to make a little arrow facing forward on the bottom of each car so it's oriented correctly. It's pretty easy with a coach because the figures inside are all facing forward, but with cars where it's less obvious (baggage cars, diners, Pullmans with seats facing each other in sections) it makes it easier.

BTW I generally put a regular length scale-head Kadee on the rear coupler of my observation cars, as it looks better. That's also why I put the long-shank coupler on the front of each car, so the observation car coupler isn't sticking way out.

Stix
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Posted by NSNYSW74 on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 11:32 AM
As I'm in N scale, I have purchased & installed short, medium & long shank couplers. Each car is different when on curves. I use 11 3/4 curves. I have put 1 long shank on one end & medium on the other end to maintain body clearance. Also consider body mount couplers. They can solve clearance issues on locos or rolling stock.
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Posted by BRAKIE on Thursday, February 13, 2020 7:35 AM

COREY CHERIZARD
I have an old Bachmann N Scale train set with the old Rapido couplers, I know that they need to be replaced with Microtrains couplers but I don't know whether they need to be long shank or short shank couplers.

MTs 1019 coupler should work since its truck or body mount.

Larry

SSRy

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Posted by joe323 on Saturday, February 15, 2020 6:43 PM

Which brings me to my Walthers subway set.  I put Kadee 158 scale couplers on them but the cars look too far apart.  I am thinking of going with short shank couplers on but am concerned that there will be derailments since subways operate on tight curves comp with other railroads.

Joe Staten Island West 

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Posted by wolf10851 on Monday, February 24, 2020 3:00 PM

I just added long couplers on my loco's since they were having difficulty navigating turns with the shorts on it.  It really all depends on the length of the loco and the degree of the radius you are running.  Speaking in HO terms which is what I am running you will never get an AC6600 to be able to pull any cars on it even with long shank if you are running an 18" radius curve.  Even thought the loco may be able to navigate that curve the ends stick out way to far to attach a car to it

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Posted by riogrande5761 on Monday, February 24, 2020 5:40 PM

Thats the big disadvantage such sharp curves as 18".  Just because they are sold in train sets doesn't mean they are a good idea.

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Posted by davidmurray on Monday, February 24, 2020 9:17 PM

Joe   Try one pair of short couplers.  Couple two cars with them and see how they work.  Don't do more than that until you know.

joe323
Which brings me to my Walthers subway set.  I put Kadee 158 scale couplers on them but the cars look too far apart.

David Murray from Oshawa, Ontario Canada
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Posted by joe323 on Tuesday, February 25, 2020 6:39 AM

davidmurray

Joe   Try one pair of short couplers.  Couple two cars with them and see how they work.  Don't do more than that until you know.

 

 
joe323
Which brings me to my Walthers subway set.  I put Kadee 158 scale couplers on them but the cars look too far apart.

 

 

 

Thanks, Dave good idea

Joe Staten Island West 

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