Bar and Pin Couplings for Gn15

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Colin Peake
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Bar and Pin Couplings for Gn15

Postby Colin Peake » Sun Apr 19, 2009 6:22 pm

Inspired by discussion in my 'Ambassador Works' thread I have had a play this afternoon with true-to-life bar and pin couplings on Gn15 stock. In real life a lot of 15" gauge stock uses these couplings so it was an interesting exercise to try it in model form.

I had a bit of a head start as during a current O9 project I found I had three left over parts that looked just right to be Gn15 coupling bars (left). I experimented in making my own pins (centre) but found that an adapted split pin actually worked better (right).
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I also made my own coupling hook, set for the moment in a pin vice.
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So how do they work?

Coupling


1) Approach with caution
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2) Line up the bar with the pocket on the wagon
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3) Use the hook to lift the pin from the wagon's pocket
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4) Use the hook to lift the bar into the pocket from the side
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5) Line the bar up in the pocket
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6) Drop the pin back in
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7) You're coupled!
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Uncoupling

1) Lift the pin
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2) nudge the bar out sideways using the hook
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3) Replace the pin
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Simples!

I actually had a play using the estate wagon and my sidelines one (with coupler pockets blutacked back on) and found that with practice it became easier!

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One thing I may consider for the future is using steel split pins rather than the soft brass ones used, a magnetic hook might then be useful to help pick up the odd dropped pin. A supply of spare pins will be a must if using this system!

Whilst I'm not sure if this is one for exhibition use, for a 'Simplicity Sidings' style layout it is quite workable. Now I just need to extend and include a working point lever for real authentic operation!

Colin
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Postby foswaldy13 » Sun Apr 19, 2009 8:08 pm

Very Cool idea!
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Postby Colin Peake » Sun Apr 19, 2009 8:17 pm

foswaldy13 wrote:Very Cool idea!


Not really my idea, just observing the real thing!

A further refinement is now undergoing testing, this removes the need to remove the pins when uncoupling...

Image

The little notch in the hole at the closest end of the bar allows the bar to act as a hook around the pin, a sort of tension lock hook on it's side (which is what inspired the idea!)

Some manual intervention is still required to couple, moving the bar about etc, but there is no need to fiddle with the pins in use. I envisage this as a handed coupling system with one end of each wagon carrying a bar. Coupled up they look almost the same as before...

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Manual uncoupling, push together and nudge out the bar:

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This version might work under exhibition conditions...

Colin
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Postby Cross Kitter » Sun Apr 19, 2009 9:39 pm

Hi Colin,

Nice work. You could, by adapting Kadee bits, and making the bar deeper at the loco end (so that is stays level) make it into an automatic coupler :!: :shock:

I experimented with small scale versions and they worked about 70% of the time. Not ideal for exhibition use but OK at home. They were completely automatic and could be used anywhere without the need for any uncoupling ramps, magnets etc. They were inspired by a man (sadly now dead) who was working in 3mm scale in Plymouth (UK) and had perfected a fully automatic coupler with magnets onboard each wagon. Took me ages and a lot of explaining from him before I could work it out :oops:
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Postby GUTMACH » Mon Apr 20, 2009 5:40 am

Nice job with the link 'n pins operation, Colin ! Although my couplers are a little different (the sides of the coupler pocket not being open), your approach with the bent pin vice is applicable, will reduce the amount of headaches I used to get, and cut down the swearing as well.

Just the only thing that needs to be done, is drill a hole in the pin's handle.

Thanks for the demo,

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Postby Glen A » Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:02 am

Colin,

I have to admit that I wasn't very impressed with the first version as it looked quite fiddly trying to put those pins in.

But I do like your second version (with the cut in the side) which looks very usable.

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Postby dieselwater » Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:16 am

+1 on coupling No2 8)
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Postby chris krupa » Mon Apr 20, 2009 7:09 am

I find the link and two pins system works under exhibition conditions both in 09 and GN15, if a little fiddly at the end of the day when I'm tired. I don't think that I'd be happy to use the first version of the coupling for the same reason. It would be interesting to try the second version though as I think that has potential.

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Postby DCRfan » Mon Apr 20, 2009 8:54 am

Colin,

I really like the advantages offered by No 2 coupler bars. I often find the lighting conditions at exhibitions make lining up 'No 1 copuler' holes and pins very hit and miss not to mention Frustrating (with capital 'F' :twisted: ).
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Postby Steve Bennett » Mon Apr 20, 2009 10:18 am

Interesting development with the second version Colin, might just have a play with that concept.

I wonder with the coupling tool, if a slightly flat U shape on the end may be an advantage to give better control placing the bar.

Just so happens I made up a bunch of coupling pins a few days ago, only takes a few minutes with some soft steel wire. If I get a chance this evening, will do a step by step to show my method.
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Postby scott b » Mon Apr 20, 2009 12:09 pm

I go to the local craft store for coupler pins, the jewelry dept. No bending or anything. They look exactly like the closed loop long coupler pin pictured and often in gold or silver (to taste) comes in a blister pack of 50 although each time I look for them on the train workbench I can`t find them so I must have 200 around total :roll:
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Postby dtsalek » Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:50 pm

OOOOOh.....Like the notced bar idea. Very cool. 8)
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Postby dtsalek » Mon Apr 20, 2009 6:51 pm

*notched
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Postby Steve Bennett » Tue Apr 21, 2009 12:47 pm

:oops: Took a bit longer to get around to this than I expected. As mentioned earlier, my simple method for making coupling pins.

Material used is a soft steel wire as used in gardening and flower arranging. I was lucky, I found some reels of pre blackened wire at a garden store a while ago and it get used for lots of modelling purposes.
Tools consist of a pin-vice with a piece of rod to form the top of the loop, I actually used a scriber point. Plus some fine tipped side cutters and also helpful, a pair of smooth jawed pliers.

First step is to push the end of the wire down one of the gaps in the collet of the pin-vice, like so:

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Here's an even closer view

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This anchors the end of the wire. Then wind it around the former, a little more than a full turn.

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Slide it off the former and you should have something like this:

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Trim the excess off and you are left with this:

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It's more economical on time if you do several at the same time, here are 10 prepared.

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Then simply cut off the excess with the side cutters, I'm using some fine tipped Xuron ones, wonderful tools and no danger of damaging them with soft wire. Then the smooth faced pliers are used to straighten the wire, just by squeezing the wire between the jaws. Easier than it sounds and it also gets rid of the curve from when the wire was on the reel.

Image

Job done :) . This took less than 10 minutes including taking the pics, in fact it has taken longer to write how to do it :lol: . You can use brass, but it is a bit springy and more difficult to work with, not to mention a bit shiny :) . The same process also makes good lift rings or tie down rings on the deck of a wagon.

Of course, you could go and buy the same thing from a model boat supplier or art shop, but you wont have the satisfaction of making it yourself, plus you can vary the sizes making your own. Hopefully some of you will feel a bit more confident about giving it a try now :wink: .
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Postby Steve Bennett » Tue Apr 21, 2009 1:08 pm

Oh, I should have mentioned that you could also use fishing hooks, just cut off to length required, be carful of those barbs though and make sure you use a hard wire cutter for these.

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Postby Prof Klyzlr » Wed May 06, 2009 7:37 am

Dear Team,

May or may not be relevant, but I just saw these...

http://www.sonorascalemodels.com/o_scale_products.htm
(scroll down to
"Our first etched metal (Brass) offerings are drawbar and receiver sets intended for use with On2 / On3 and On30 locomotives" )

Maybe useful?
Happy Modelling,
Aim to Improve,
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Postby Simon Andrews » Fri May 08, 2009 12:07 pm

They look good Prof. Does anyone know of a UK stockist :?: :idea: :arrow: Having seen your post I had a dig through the spares box and found some old Bachmann N gauge 0-4-0 switcher side and connecting rods (3sets. Glad I kept them) which I plan to use with my Gnine stock. They look just like the dogbone draw bars :D

Simon.
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Postby Steve Bennett » Fri May 08, 2009 1:05 pm

Simon Andrews wrote:I had a dig through the spares box and found some old Bachmann N gauge 0-4-0 switcher side and connecting rods (3sets. Glad I kept them) which I plan to use with my Gnine stock. They look just like the dogbone draw bars :D


You might find them a bit long if you are going to push wagons around curves Simon, if you are just pulling a train though, no problem :wink: Yup, been there before, in O-14/On2 though :lol:
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Postby Simon Andrews » Fri May 08, 2009 1:54 pm

I will bear that in mind :roll: Using the connecting rods I reduced the length to 8mm and drilled a hole for the pin. I may try the same with the side rods, simply cutting in half and see how that works. The more I think about this type of coupling the more appealing they seem for pizza and roundy roundy type layouts especially with the the type of curves that I am forced to use to obtain a continuous run.

Simon.
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