N Gauge Forum

Product Reviews => Coupling Reviews => Topic started by: JHSvensson on September 03, 2019, 03:55:25 PM

Title: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: JHSvensson on September 03, 2019, 03:55:25 PM
Graham Farish locos and coaches all come with Rapido styled couplers, from what I am able to determine. Does anyone convert these to Micro Trains knuckle couplers which are much more........not glaringly large?
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: njee20 on September 03, 2019, 04:03:44 PM
Microtrains have a much larger following in the US, where you can just get replacement "trucks" with them fitted, and you've not got buffers and associated paraphernalia to interfere. IIRC they don't do NEM ones (they certainly didn't), which makes converting UK stock much more awkward.

Dapol Easi-shunts are the obvious UK/NEM equivalent, a very similar implementation, possibly a bit more coarse, but still the same principal - a knuckle coupler worked by under track magnets.

Dapol also do a cosmetic "dummy knuckle" coupler which doesn't have the uncoupling functionality, but is much less visually obtrusive than either the rapido or the Easi-Shunt.
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: JHSvensson on September 03, 2019, 04:12:59 PM
Ah Yes, I had overlooked the buffers issue. I will check the Dapol version.....which I just read about. :thankyousign:
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: BobB on September 03, 2019, 04:24:01 PM
All my stock uses easy shunts, even when they need converting because the stock doesn’t have NEM sockets. Have not attempted to convert a locomotive without a NEM socket but most seem to be NEM anyway these days.

They all work fine as well as looking a bit better.
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: njee20 on September 03, 2019, 04:27:58 PM
Don't know what era you model, but the Farish 66 doesn't have NEM pockets. Probably an obvious one if you model modern image.
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: IanF on November 25, 2019, 06:29:22 PM
Also as a 'newbie' I am wondering about couplings. I'm just in the process of building a couple of N gauge wagon kits (N GAUGE society) with PECO chassis. I will be doing a lot of shunting and someone mentioned the Easi-Shunt from Dapol. Do I need these on ALL my models? and do I need magnetic on every wagon? Sounds expensive to have them on every wagon. Am I missing something - can I have just a few with the magnet version? :dunce:
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: ntpntpntp on November 25, 2019, 06:49:18 PM
Also as a 'newbie' I am wondering about couplings. ... I will be doing a lot of shunting and someone mentioned the Easi-Shunt from Dapol. Do I need these on ALL my models?

Depends whether you want full remote uncoupling of *any* wagon from any other?  I believe they work similar to Kadees and other knuckles in that both sides need to be fitted with the working couplings so that both swing apart when over the track magnet?  If you just want to be able to uncouple a rake from a loco, then you only need EZ-shunts on the loco and the end wagons of the rake .   I suppose you could start out that way and add more EZ-Shunts yo other wagons as you can afford them.

Me, I just stick to good old Rapido couplings and a dentist's probe to lift them. Simple, and I can uncouple anything from anything anywhere on the track (well, on straight track  anyway :D )
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: IanF on November 25, 2019, 07:35:27 PM
"Me, I just stick to good old Rapido couplings"

Excuse my ignorance - so are PECO couplings RAPIDO couplings (one and the same) - still learning, just want to get it right before inserting the couplings to the models.
Title: Re: The Noobie Coupler Question
Post by: ntpntpntp on November 25, 2019, 07:52:05 PM
"Me, I just stick to good old Rapido couplings"

Excuse my ignorance - so are PECO couplings RAPIDO couplings (one and the same) - still learning, just want to get it right before inserting the couplings to the models.

The horizontal hook standard coupling design commonly found on N gauge models was introduced by Arnold Rapido in the 1960s and are thus mostly referred to as Rapido couplings. Fortunately they allowed other manufacturers to adopt it thus allowing the vast majority of locos and rolling stock from all brands to couple together, unlike the mess found in some other scales  :D

Yes it is a bit large and ugly but it works.  There are arguably better looking and clever alternative designs out there with better remote uncoupling capabilities if that's what you particularly desire.  I stick with Rapidos for maximum compatibility across the well over 1000+ items of stock I've amassed  since taking up N gauge in the 1970s.

There have been variations in the design of mount used with the Rapido hook;

The typical classic design uses a T-shank and spring in a pocket, usually secured by some form of cover plate.

Fleischmann use a flat leaf spring at the rear of some of their couplings.

Graham Farish have been through various iterations  such as the early unsprung "U-bend" shank (as I call it),  a later variant with a single chamfer on the underside of the hook (awful !)  before adopting a more standard T-shank and spring and then moving on to NEM.

Peco use no spring at all and rely on a loose mounting with their  "Elsie" coupling (ELC = something like "Easy Light lift Coupling" I believe). I used to like those on the rather lightweight small British N wagons. The European wagons I run these days tend to have a bit more mass.

NEM is a standard pocket introduced in recent years to allow alternative styles of coupling to "plug and play".  I get the impression these are much more popular in the UK and Europe than elsewhere. Sometimes found to suffer a little coupling droop or lift due to slight variations in manufacture.
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