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View Full Version : Servicing MTL's for consistent operation - HOW?



turbine682
9th Sep 2006, 05:18 PM
I have a theory to test. The problem cars are all 40' box - 2 Atlas and 1 MTL. I've noticed that the trip pins on the couplers are dead smack against the box frame. I wonder if this limits motion. I'll try a shim and let you know.

Thanks, --Ed

uwe4877
9th Sep 2006, 09:50 PM
Looks like you are working your way thru this proplem.
Thes darn cupplers are a triki littel buggers.
Sorry I cant help you.

I hope you are having fun and :pint: :l :wink:

stevegates
10th Sep 2006, 09:11 AM
Try twisting the trip pins. Sometimes they are to close to center. :)

turbine682
10th Sep 2006, 02:24 PM
The only way that I've been able to obtain consistent uncoupling with these problem cars (couplers) is a redesign of the uncoupling track.

The other day I made a track that would hold 2 mags side by side under each rail. I've found that by staggering just 2 mags all cars uncouple as %@#$ well they should for the money and effort.

I cut out two sets of ties. On the rail facing me, I have 1 mag butted against the rightmost tie. On the opposite rail, the other mag is butted against the leftmost tie.

The car that is to remain attached to the train is backed close if not over the mag against the rightmost tie. When the train is pulled foward, the coupler on the car to be uncoupled is attracted to the mag on the far side (leftmost tie). Watching closely, uncoupling can usually be accomplished on the 1st if not the 2nd attempt.

Whatever. I have 6 other uncoupling tracks that may need re-work when I get around to it.

Still sticking with MTL's; however, the hammer has been very close by the last few days.

Thanks for letting me vent. Hope this info helps anyone wanting to do extensive car-by-car switching and uncoupling.

--Ed

turbine682
2nd Nov 2006, 07:05 AM
The only way that I've been able to obtain consistent uncoupling with these problem cars (couplers) is a redesign of the uncoupling track.

The other day I made a track that would hold 2 mags side by side under each rail. I've found that by staggering just 2 mags all cars uncouple as %@#$ well they should for the money and effort.

Clarification 11/02/06: I have found that it really only takes 2 magnets (1 under each rail), staggered as described below. However, I'm still using some that are aligned directly across from each other - just haven't had to stagger them yet-- go figure. :roll:

I cut out two sets of ties. On the rail facing me, I have 1 mag butted against the rightmost tie. On the opposite rail, the other mag is butted against the leftmost tie. Clarification 11/02/06: I've added several new uncoupling tracks with only 1 tie cut out. See link below

The car that is to remain attached to the train is backed close if not over the mag against the rightmost tie. When the train is pulled foward, the coupler on the car to be uncoupled is attracted to the mag on the far side (leftmost tie). Watching closely, uncoupling can usually be accomplished on the 1st if not the 2nd attempt.
--Ed

http://www.nscale.net/PNphpBB2-viewtopic-t-3660.html

I use Zap-a-Gap now - much better adhesive.

I'm also using C80 - the mags fit right under the rail as C80 ties are taller than C55.

Bottom line: Go with what works best for you... experiment. The mags are supposed to work through ballast, but I have not tried this yet.

Kozmo gets the credit for bringing the RS mags to my attention. He also has some info and photos....

Have fun! --Ed

porkypine52
2nd Nov 2006, 10:09 AM
Do have the MTL coupler standards kit? Come with the little flat piece that you use to adjust the trip pin height. Also has the unit that sits on the rails and has a MTL coupler at the exact height so that you can make sure that your cars mounted couplers are where they should be.

I will admit that MTL's can some times be a pain in the a** to get adjusted right, but when they work right, they are a pleasure to use.

Bryan
2nd Nov 2006, 01:09 PM
...the little flat piece that you use to adjust the trip pin height...

I believe that shim is to adjust the knuckle height...
Trip-pin height adjustment is accomplished by altering its position within the knuckle...

siderod
2nd Nov 2006, 05:26 PM
Brian,
The coupler standards kit is a package of a coupler height gauge and a peice of 0.010" metal thats placed across the rails. The car is then rolled towards it. The coupler trip pin shoud clear the top of the piece of metal, but not by more then a few thou.

You are right, though...to actually adjust the height of the pin itself, you can either rebend it using the proper tools, or move it within the knuckle.

AR

turbine682
2nd Nov 2006, 05:55 PM
Hi All,

I have both the heighth gauge and the metal. I have not seen any significant things out of whack, but can always check again.

(I also have spare couplers to swap if I get tired of fooling around with one in particular)


I have some MTL's that I can park over the magents and WATCH THEM OPEN AND UNCOUPLE WITHOUT PULLING THE TRAIN FORWARD. Heh, these are my favorites :P

Question: I use the Hob-E-Lube graphite powder. Anyone know if the MTL "Grease'm" is superior? Any difference?

Thanks,

--Ed

Bryan
2nd Nov 2006, 07:12 PM
Brian,
The coupler standards kit is a package of a coupler height gauge and a peice of 0.010" metal thats placed across the rails...

Yup, your right on that... I read too fast, and when I saw "little flat piece that you use to adjust the trip pin height", I thought of the plastic shim that comes with the coupler kits (not the steel gauge in standards kit)...

Spoon
2nd Nov 2006, 10:46 PM
From what I have seen hobby lube graphite and MTL grease em are the same thing. I use both and have minimal problems. Actually I had more problems with a few I used the MTL graphite in, go figure.

Komata
3rd Nov 2006, 12:30 AM
For what it's worth . . .

I am slowly converting to MTL's and still run a mix of them and Rapidos.

However, rather than use specificly-branded graphite, I made use of an ordinary very thick-leaded black-lead pencil (such as are used in primary schools), which we know locally as 'Black Beauty's' (Unfortunately I don't know the code - 'B' perhaps?)

This seemed to work well, and I have had no problems with the movement of the MTL components.

I have also used the black powder in a discarded PHOTOCOPIER (aka Xerox) toner drum.

This I am assured is high-grade graphite, and again, it caused no problems, although it is very definitely NOT as controllable as the pencil previously mentioned (whatever you do, DON'T get it on the carpet - It is somewhat inclined to stain . . . )

Just a couple of alternatives which might save you a few dollars . .

Hope this helps.

Komata
"TVR - serving the Northern Taranaki . . . "

Spoon
3rd Nov 2006, 11:18 AM
One thing I forgot. I did have a few that just plain wouldn't work for whatever reason. I just replaced them. i figured i had enough stress in my life i didn't need to be slapped around by a MT coupler as well.

turbine682
3rd Nov 2006, 06:48 PM
Spoon and Komata,

Thanks for the info - always a pleasure hearing from you. --Ed

turbine682
3rd Nov 2006, 08:50 PM
One thing I forgot. I did have a few that just plain wouldn't work for whatever reason. I just replaced them. i figured i had enough stress in my life i didn't need to be slapped around by a MT coupler as well.

I've run into a few of those myself :blink - soon to be replaced. I agree with the stress situation, as I've spent a few hours fooling around with both couplers and adjustments to mag tracks as previously discussed.

--Ed

3rdboxcar
4th Nov 2006, 06:03 PM
I have found that the metal used in atlas accumate couplers is not the same as mtl, my mtl cars work nearly every time while the atlas rolling stock is hit or miss.

turbine682
4th Nov 2006, 06:09 PM
Hi 3rdboxcar,

Check out the link below:

http://www.nscale.net/PNphpBB2-viewtopic-t-3611.html

You may have a similar situation with the Accumates. I have no problems 99% of the time with Rare Earth Magnets.

--Ed

3rdboxcar
4th Nov 2006, 06:15 PM
I use radio shack ceramic magnets buried under the track.