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N scale Couplers and nervous breakdowns!

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N scale Couplers and nervous breakdowns!
Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, November 23, 2003 3:18 PM
It's ME again. Does ANYBODY have a "trick" or "technique" for replacing N scale couplers? I'm new at this and I'm NOT real familiar with the names of the various types. With the exception of a new Atlas GP, ALL of the pieces have those "standard" knuckle type couplers. Would they be "Rapido" couplers? I just about went BONKERS trying to replace one on a Bachmann E-8. That little tiny spring was giving me FITS. Any suggestions?? Also, my aforementioned Atlas has those "new" little skinny jobs. What are they called?
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Posted by AltonFan on Sunday, November 23, 2003 5:02 PM
A Rapido coupler looks like a maze. A little "t" comes of the back and fits into a groove. Behind the "t" is a spring.

Are you trying to install Micro-Trains couplers?

Look at the E-8 again, and make sure it's a Bachmann. (I don't think Bachmann makes an E-8. Life-Like, Kato, Con-Cor, Atlas, and Rivarossi have all made E-8s.)

Dan

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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, November 24, 2003 7:16 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by AltonFan

A Rapido coupler looks like a maze. A little "t" comes of the back and fits into a groove. Behind the "t" is a spring.

Are you trying to install Micro-Trains couplers?

Look at the E-8 again, and make sure it's a Bachmann. (I don't think Bachmann makes an E-8. Life-Like, Kato, Con-Cor, Atlas, and Rivarossi have all made E-8s.)

I had a brain-fart! The loco is an EMD F-9! DUH! I'm still getting the "bullet nosed" deisels ironed out in my mind!

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Posted by MAbruce on Monday, November 24, 2003 10:16 AM
To be totally frank, I wouldn’t even consider wasting my money on converting a Bachmann F9 to Microtrain couplers! I have one and think it has to be one of the poorest N-scale locos out there. In fact, I only keep it so my boys can have fun watching it streak around my layout at warp 9. I am amazed that it has not jumped the tracks. [:p]

I’d reconsider losing any more hair on this “toy”. If you want a passable (cheap) F-unit, then try a LifeLike F7. Otherwise, Kato just re-released an F3, Intermountain & Microtrains have nice FT’s. Although pricy as compared to a Bachmann, you won’t go wrong with these.

Converting couplers on locomotives can be a challenge, but it all depends on what loco you are converting. For example, I recently converted a LifeLike SD7 and a LL GP20. I used a preassembled MT coupler and it took minutes to do.


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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, November 24, 2003 11:04 AM
Yea, I realized WAY after the fact that I got off on the "wrong track" (PUN!) when I chose Bachmann.....I beg forgiveness. I have a BUNCH of rolling stock and some passenger cars that I (mostly) bought off of eBay. I have NO INTENTIONS of converting ALL of them. I have a new Atlas GP-7 TT with Accumates ON IT. What I really want to do is create a "tweener" car with an accumate on one end and a rapido on the other. I KNOW this will horrify the "purists, but a man's gotta do........
As for replacing broken couplers, I was just wondering if ANYBODY has a "tip" or "trick" for placing that infuriating little spring......other than plain old perseverance and luck!
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Posted by MAbruce on Monday, November 24, 2003 1:12 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by untabubba

What I really want to do is create a "tweener" car with an accumate on one end and a rapido on the other. I KNOW this will horrify the "purists, but a man's gotta do........


I feel your pain! A conversion car is a wise move. Don't worry about horrifing anyone - it's your layout and your rules! This is an expensive hobby, and not everyone has the means to get everything right away. I've been two years so far and hunt out bargins where-ever possible.

QUOTE: [
As for replacing broken couplers, I was just wondering if ANYBODY has a "tip" or "trick" for placing that infuriating little spring......other than plain old perseverance and luck!


You will find a running joke about MT springs...

Let's just say that you are not alone.

I don't have a trick (have not done it that much). Maybe someone else here does?

Good luck!
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Posted by AltonFan on Monday, November 24, 2003 2:57 PM
QUOTE: What I really want to do is create a "tweener" car with an accumate on one end and a rapido on the other.


What I use is an Atlas Ore Car with a Micro-Trains truck on one end, and a Rapido-equipped truck on the other. You do what you gotta do.

You might want to consider getting some of the tools and fixtures illustrated here: http://www.micro-trains.com/tools_acc.htm
The special tweezers are especially helpful.

This Kadee product might also be useful: http://www.micro-trains.com/tools_acc.htm
I thought Micro-Trains made their own version for N scale. But a small jeweler's screwdriver might be just as useful.

Dan

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Posted by ndbprr on Monday, November 24, 2003 3:24 PM
You can construct a three sided cradle deep and wide enough that you can get you hands into it from the ends. Make a hinged clear lid of styrene or plexiglass and when the spring goes BOING!! you should be able to recover it.

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