2018-05.2: Better Kadee coupler performance

11 May 2018

TMTV
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4.875
Average: 4.9 (8 votes)
Summary: 
21:38 - May 2018 Act II - Improving Kadee Coupler Performance (2018)
Description: 

Kadee may be the standard go-to coupler in the hobby, but many modelers don’t take the time to read the instructions in order to get the best performance from them.  Joe Fugate reviews their tips, and offers some of his own for more reliable operation.

Act III: Masking for airbrushing ...

Go to Act III

Comments

Warflight's picture

Just a little suggestion I've had a lot of luck with. When putting on knuckle springs, I'll run a small bit of thread through the spring itself. That way, when it pops off of my screwdriver, or spring tool (and it will... several times) it doesn't go flying across the room.

Once the spring is attached, I gently pull the thread out, and then apply my CA gel.

Oft times, if I'm doing a bunch of knuckle springs (I keep my couplers in a ditty box, and out of 100, maybe five or six will lose their springs) I'll string a few springs like a necklace.

This method has improved my outlook on life, and keeps my cat from judging me every time I let out a string of profanity whenever I lose a ferkakta spring.

 Joe very detailed time consuming techniques, but instead of the number 2 pencil, can a guy just use a powdered graphite? or do you go with the pencil for apllication purposes?

Warflight's picture

Both work, but I'm assuming the pencil is mentioned, because a pencil is cheap, it's more precise, it lasts a lot longer, plus, everybody has at least ONE pencil in their home somewhere.

I use both, to be honest (depending on what's in reach at the time) but I have found that when using powdered graphite, more often or not, I'll use a bit too much (and whatever you do... don't sneeze while using powdered graphite... if you don't blow it everywhere with the sneeze, you'll accidentally squeeze the tube too hard! that stuff doesn't just clean up with a paper towel)

But again... this is just opinion on my part.
 

joef's picture

Joe very detailed time consuming techniques, but instead of the number 2 pencil, can a guy just use a powdered graphite? or do you go with the pencil for apllication purposes?

Time-consuming? How much is good operation worth to you? Adds maybe 10 min per car once you get it down. Takes way longer to explain than to do. How many time-consuming derailments, coupling hassles, or break-aparts because the coupler spring has gone-a-missing do you prefer instead?

As for the pencil, it puts a complete graphite coating on the surfaces that matter, applying powdered graphite is hit-or-miss -- I also give a squirt of graphite powder into the completed box, which I failed to show. Belt and suspenders.

But using the pencil applies a thorough, consistent graphite coating right where it matters most.

I've spent much of my life cutting corners on couplers and other working part installs and I've paid for it. Once I slowed down a little and took the time to do it right, it has paid huge dividends in consistently good operational performance. It is time well spent.

tpmarshall's picture

Joe wrote...

Time-consuming? How much is good operation worth to you? Adds maybe 10 min per car once you get it down.

... and also...

I've spent much of my life cutting corners on couplers and other working part installs and I've paid for it. Once I slowed down a little and took the time to do it right, it has paid huge dividends in consistently good operational performance. It is time well spent.

---

We're all so rushed for time, aren't we? What's the rush? It's a hobby. And for those who complain about how expensive the hobby is, adding 10 minutes per car for a fraction of a cent's worth of graphite from a pencil seems like a great way to keep the costs down...

People can find 10 minutes at the workbench every day to do someting simple like this, and even a large fleet can be upgraded relatively quickly. And who doesn't want to spend 10 minutes a day at their workbench, engaging with the hobby? I sure do!

Happy modeling (if you can find the time)...

- Trevor

 

Joe "very detailed and time consuming" was no insult, no doubt worth the effort I am sure. Very detailed was actually a compliment. The average Joe (no pun intended) including myself would never have dreamed of detailing the coupler in this way or atleast I never heard of the idea until here. 

Trever for the record I never complain about an excuse to sit at the work bench. 

joef's picture

Glad to hear your remarks where that these ideas are new to you and sound useful.

Ironically, over half of what I show is from Kadee's own instructions! Interesting that these recommendations often get "I've never heard of this before ..." remarks when I share them.

Kind of adds some credence to the offhand comment that most people don't read instructions ...

Joe Its common Knowledge that Most people dont read instructions, I am sure through your years you are guilty of skipping instructions from time to time..However the techneiques that you resourced from Kadee's instructions are deffinately new to me and usefull.  I am sure that thats why they included them.  Until of late I have not had the luxury of purchasing much from Kadee but what I have in the past is Quality.  I have to say  thats what I like about the contributers like yourself and others of this site is that they share knowledeg and techniques that some guys  may not  have the time or resources to discover. Thank you again.  looking forward to  updates and photos of your latest work. 

joef's picture

Sometimes, the instructions are largely redundant or sometimes poorly translated rubbish.

But in the case of Kadee's instructions, they contain many gems of wisdom and are worth a good read.

Joe went out today picked up some scale 158 whisker couplers, (less expensive than I recall) the instructions included the details you explained, I confess worth the read, I installed them onto one car, deffinately a difference compared to other out of the box ready to roll cars, very much worth the time and effort. thanks again for the tips, and calling attention to the instructions that I otherwise would have ignored. 

Very good tutorial on coupler install. Good to know I'm not te only one useing a #2 pencil on a burnish coupler shank. Thanks for this video really enjoyed it.