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How did you improve your rolling stock today? (HO & other scales)


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Fitting NEM couplers into this 1/80 tanker by Tomix. First already done, the other one is waiting for its turn.

 

Not a fix per se, but there's no thread "How did you improve your rolling stock" for H0/other scales.

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  • cteno4 changed the title to How did you improve your rolling stock today? (HO & other scales)
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I know you have discussed on a different thread, your frustration at the lack of true gauged (12mm) RTR HOm stock. This image for me looks horrifying as I can forgive the out of scale track gauge but not this size of coupler.

 

Forgive my ignorance but is this style of coupler just used to join to specific European rolling stock or is there some functionality to these couplers that you wouldn’t  get from a more scale size option?

 

My view is that these would probably hide well with rolling stock with buffers but less so with rolling stock from countries that don’t have them.

Edited by Kamome
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I was wondering about those couplers, they looked rather odd as in HO there is so much more size to do things prototypically.

 

jeff

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2 hours ago, Kamome said:

I know you have discussed on a different thread, your frustration at the lack of true gauged (12mm) RTR HOm stock. This image for me looks horrifying as I can forgive the out of scale track gauge but not this size of coupler.

 

Forgive my ignorance but is this style of coupler just used to join to specific European rolling stock or is there some functionality to these couplers that you wouldn’t  get from a more scale size option?

 

My view is that these would probably hide well with rolling stock with buffers but less so with rolling stock from countries that don’t have them.

 

This coupler is standard European coupler, and this is the exact functionality I'm getting - I'm able to connect to European models. It sticks out too much, but it's just a visual thing.

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This is a relic of the 60s, my dad's old Märklin trains all had them. I can't believe European manufacturers have not moved on since then.

As @Kamomesaid, I don't see the point of wanting to model HOm to be closer to real scales if it's too disfigure your rollingstock with such out of scale couplers. @Jaco3011couldn't you use a coupler with a shorter shank?

Edited by disturbman
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9 minutes ago, disturbman said:

This is a relic of the 60s, my dad's old Märklin trains all had them. I can't believe European manufacturers have not moved on since then.

As @Kamomesaid, I don't see the point of wanting to model HOm to be closer to real scales if it's too disfigure your rollingstock with such out of scale couplers. @Jaco3011couldn't you use a coupler with a shorter shank?

 

That shank came out like this, because I modified that part. I' screwed up drilling one hole, so now I have to buy new couplers. The tanker doesn't have European coupler socket, which is the reason couplers made in Europe can be easily exchanged.

 

I'm going to use IMON couplers as the default ones, they look excellent. NEMs are only for shared play on H0m meetings.

 

5 hours ago, Kamome said:

 out of scale track gauge

 

Bogies may be too narrow, but the gauge (12mm) is closer to the 1/80 equivalent (13,3375mm) than original one (16,5mm).

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4 hours ago, cteno4 said:

I was wondering about those couplers, they looked rather odd as in HO there is so much more size to do things prototypically.

 

jeff

 

I remember some of my old Lima OO scale trains had those things. Early 80's but they were second hand and old even then. They look awful but they worked ok. The British Hornby style ones weren't much prettier but also worked ok.

Edited by gavino200
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Yeah the D loop tension hook couplers were on everything and these were still being used on British 00 models until about 10 years ago. Even today the only advancement in this area is a smaller version which still look too big. 

Thankfully most use NEM pockets so a lot of modellers remove the coupler and detail one end to look more realistic. It then means you can only couple to one end of a loco.

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I'm surprised the euro models don't go to kadee type couplers.  While they are not prototypical, they're at least more functional and less obtrusive than the hook and loop they seem to use now.  The insistence on everything having to conform to ultra narrow starter set radius, even on high end models seems to have stunted their industry.  

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I think a lot of British modellers are switching to using Kadees, especially those who want to replicate freight operations. There is also a good number of collectors of British models who just want one of everything to keep rather than turn into something more realistic.
 

There are advantages to those D Loop couplers in that they are very easy to uncouple with just a bent piece of wire and they would couple on bends as long as they weren’t too tight. 

 

I have been really impressed with Kadee scale head couplers. I know Imon do even smaller ones but I find the track a bit bumpy at most of the rental layouts. If I had space for my own HO layout i’d consider going for smaller, even more realistic looking couplers but the scale head are a compromise I can live with. Just wish Japanese retailers would buy the bulk packs rather than just the packs of 4.

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roadstar_na6

I think knuckle couplers on a Euro loco would look even more weird than this. My most recent H0 loco came with these hook couplers as well, I converted it to automatic ones.

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Hugh, I find it odd with the size of horribly oversized scale that they did not do nicer couplers that were automatic, somewhat prototypical, and close to scale. But I guess if you run with others you either have to have their standard or one car that’s a adapter car for your own couplers.

 

jeff

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Nearly one year without new entries. I think it is time to write a few lines.

Last larger improvement on my rolling stock had been installing close coupler to the クモハ41 & クハ55 set by KATO.

The straight stock coupler looked awful.

First I tried KATO close coupler of the Series 20 and also KIHA58 type but they turned out to block the bogies.

Fiddling around I then found the Tomix Tight Lock TN Coupler fit perfectly.

They are in the right place to make good distance between cars and without obstruction to the bogies.

I now also can couple a クモニ83 (Tomix) to the クモハ41.

O.K. this had been done in January and all over the time I intended to take some pictures to post here but ...

 

Yesterday I decided to do some trials with amending a coupler to the クハ481 to enable a EF63 for helper service.

In fact I needed some more pulling power to the 7 car train with just one powered unit.

The just delivered reproduction of the 481 series by Tomix would serve some power but there are too much unpowered units left.

I'll convert one train to a complete 7 car dummy pulled by the EF63 and move the existing power unit to a 8 car 481 train which will be shipped soon.

 

I'll reply to my posting here right after I took some images of both.

 

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Completed some short projects thanks to some recently found detailing parts. 

 

Finally located a Fuji headmark for my express colour EF65. The pack of 4 from Moriya Studio comes with slight colour variations for the EF60/65, ED76, DF50 and EF66. They are very well made from metal although not magnetic to use on the Kato locos directly. They require some double sided tape like many of the Tomix headmarks. 

 

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I have also started adding the destination signs to the sides of the 50 series for a local service headed to Yamagata. These are very low cost from a small company called Revolution Factory. As these coaches were used across a lot of different areas of Japan, I can forgive Tomix for not including these. They are very crisply printed and stick well to the painted surface only for ¥500 per sheet. 

 

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Got the details added to the Tomix Kiha 40-2000 this week. It gives a number of options for the jumper plugs, with cables or without, horn cover , flip cover or vented to match whichever region you’re modelling. 

 

I decided on vented horn covers, which seemed most common in west Japan and Kyushu. 

 

It’s a very nice model but can’t seem to fathom how to remove the cab details to add a driver. They’re definitely secured in place well and as they have parts for head/tail and cab lights, I need to be a bit careful. 

 

The instructions are reasonably comprehensive, although you need to drill holes in the roof for mounting the antenna. The model, like most Tomix models, comes with a drilling template. The problem is there are 2 sets of holes, labelled 1 and 2,  with no explanation as to which is appropriate. I had to find some photo reference and chose the one closest to what I saw, pretty much in the middle between cab front and first roof vent/toilet water tank depending on the end. The other set of holes would mount it right next to the first piece of roof furniture.

 

Haven't got around to the destination signs and running numbers yet. I’m still on the fence as to whether I make it a Yonago area Kiha, to match a number of my diesel locos or do something Kyushu based like Hakata or Nogata.

 

There are some finely etched builders plates to add to one end, plus some pre-painted metal parts, I believe for some units that had a larger external access panel for emptying the toilet. I wasn’t going to use these but nice they’ve been included. 

 

Once completed, I plan to add some pin wash grime and perhaps some distress and diesel soot around the exhaust. 

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Welshbloke

Completed my Aclass 205 Series with the arrival of some 30AWG wire to connect the twin Tenshodo power bogies together:

 

https://www.instagram.com/p/CuHHzWwtqxrOQRrVJfcd8mCX6dCk8lB2OEg_7U0/?igshid=YmM0MjE2YWMzOA==

 

https://www.instagram.com/reel/CuHHZ3_LV16LiXYSjFsgxmldVHlykQvqGfgGjQ0/?igshid=YmM0MjE2YWMzOA==

 

I think the same kit is still available, but it's now pre-painted so wouldn't match mine. I used Tamiya Silver Leaf aerosol for the body along with Games Workshop and Vallejo paints, lime green self adhesive vinyl for the stripes and a coat of Vallejo satin varnish applied with an airbrush to finish.

 

If you're building one then a few pointers: fill all the underframe boxes on the MoHa with weight, along with any space in the underside of the interior. Mine has as much roofing lead as I could cram in along with the Aclass ballast weights (which I suspect weren't intended for this setup as they didn't fit without cutting). The mounting arms for the Tenshodo bogies need a bit of trial and error to match the ride height to the other cars - the cutting diagram in the instructions is useful but ignore the photo of arm/shim arrangements and experiment.

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marknewton

Welshbloke, when I click on your links, I get this message:

 

"Sorry, this page isn't available."

 

Cheers,

 

Mark.

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shadowtiger25

Added some detail to the cab of Mt Zokeimura EF13

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Edited by disturbman
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Very nice @shadowtiger25 I have been eyeing up one of these beauties but probably a bit out of era compared to the rest of my stock. I assume yours is the early, post-war version. I may still succumb to temptation and your photos are obviously not helping resist.

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shadowtiger25
13 hours ago, Kamome said:

Very nice @shadowtiger25 I have been eyeing up one of these beauties but probably a bit out of era compared to the rest of my stock. I assume yours is the early, post-war version. I may still succumb to temptation and your photos are obviously not helping resist.

It is the early post war type. Its also a bit out of era for most of my stuff as well, but I can run it alongside my C62 pulled Tusbame express. And much of my freight rolling stock fits behind it from that era as well.

I mostly got it because Ive always thought crocodile types are really cool. Though getting one from Yahoo Auction would have been a cheeper route then the Australian hobby shop I bought it from...

Anyway, I'm going to be dropping Loksound in it as it has a 21 Pin Plug and a space for a speaker as well as weathering

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2 hours ago, shadowtiger25 said:

Anyway, I'm going to be dropping Loksound in it as it has a 21 Pin Plug and a space for a speaker as well as weathering

I think weathering would really add to this model, although I'd be careful with the choice of dirt and grime colours as its going over quite a dark brown and could easily look too bright.

 

I have been eyeing up preloaded sound decoders, starting with my DD54s, available from Kumata (KMT) and noticed they had an optimized version for the ZM EF13 too.

 

They are not cheap (Around 25,000 yen) but I would like to dive into DCC for my HO stock eventually and this would avoid any complicated wiring installation. I am currently in the process of painting up my Kato Kiha 58 series wheels, bogies and underframes to lose the plasticky look before weathering and realised how easy it would be to relocate the decoder socket or lose it all together as the head/tail lighting are not connected to it. There are a number of people at the rental layout, including the owner, who have DCC sound installed in their stock and it really adds another level.

 

 

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shadowtiger25
57 minutes ago, Kamome said:

I think weathering would really add to this model, although I'd be careful with the choice of dirt and grime colours as its going over quite a dark brown and could easily look too bright.

 

I have been eyeing up preloaded sound decoders, starting with my DD54s, available from Kumata (KMT) and noticed they had an optimized version for the ZM EF13 too.

 

They are not cheap (Around 25,000 yen) but I would like to dive into DCC for my HO stock eventually and this would avoid any complicated wiring installation. I am currently in the process of painting up my Kato Kiha 58 series wheels, bogies and underframes to lose the plasticky look before weathering and realised how easy it would be to relocate the decoder socket or lose it all together as the head/tail lighting are not connected to it. There are a number of people at the rental layout, including the owner, who have DCC sound installed in their stock and it really adds another level.

 

 

Yes, they are pricey from that company. I shelled out for the E13 ZM optimized ver

But for most locos I'd rather get a blank lok 5 for like 100-120USD and find one that's similar sounding on ESUs library and custom make nessary sounds like the whistles. Which is what I did with the DE10 I posted before.

This does require the lokprogramer and learning how to use that program but still

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Not content with bare plastic sheen on my models, I have set to work un-platifying (I know it’s not a word) my Kiha 58 coaches. Actually what i’m am doing is procrastinating, starting projects that I have been considering while putting off how to weather the EF510 roof now on JRF duty. I started with the Kiha 65

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The chassis were sprayed with Tamiya AS-7 USAAF Neutral grey which is a pretty close match. There were lots of defects in the colour of the plastic so thought better to paint than just clear coat, despite most not being seen. 

 

Engine and seating parts were sprayed in Tamiya AS-11 RAF medium sea grey bought in error for the chassis. I had painted the seats previously but was never 100% happy with them. This time I have sprayed them the single grey colour and I will then use some deep blue washi tape to add the cushions. Actually the paint is a good match for Koki bogies and wheels if you want to make it look like a new refurbished wagon.  Also tried

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I used Vallejo acrylics to start applying some discolouration to the engine and painting up some of the underside boxes into a slightly different colours thanks to a great blog of one at a static display. Under very close magnified scrutiny, you can pick a lot of holes in the effect but at normal viewing, it blends together quite well. I may apply some rust weathering powders to the base of the engine just to add some texture and blend in the colours a little more before I clear coat everything to avoid knocks.  The lacquer based grey colour gives a solid base so hopefully the acrylic should adhere without issue but I will clear coat anyway. 

 

https://ameblo.jp/uguisugawa-railway/entry-12489416771.html

 

Still a big work in progress, need to paint the radiators in a dark grey/black before I add a pin wash and some light rail grime weathering. Then only 3 more to do. 58, 28 and Kiro 28. 

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I used some artistic license with a steel colour in the fuel tank, just to differentiate a little. Taking photos helps as it sometimes shows you that you need an other coat as you can see here on the exhaust. With the light shining on it, this wasn't hugely apparent with the naked eye. I may tone the overall appearance of the fuel tank with some light grey wash to make it look a bit more beat up. 

 

Haven’t found pictures of these looking horrifically dirty so I assume they got a constant wipe down on fuel tanks, engine parts etc.. Weathering will be light paint bleaching, especially on the black parts, along with some brake dust and some light rail dirt. 

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Edited by Kamome
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