Re: [SergentEng] Possibly Going To Kadee's On Passenger Cars

Christopher Zurek

My idea is to make the people with screwed up Free-mo modules fix them. I get so tired of that problem.

Chris Z.

On 9/26/2016 8:49 PM, jacob.damron@... [SergentEng] wrote:

Fellow Sergent enthusiasts:

First, let me preface that I love the Sergent coupler in both appearance and operation. I've built and installed over 300 now for myself and others and they work great in freight trains. However, I'm about to lose my mind with these things on passenger trains.

First, I tried to install the Type H coupler on my cars and I couldn't get around the layout without derailing. I operate on Free-mo layouts and the ends aren't always perfectly level resulting in a bit of rise and fall at the module ends. This resulted in the tight lock coupler of the preceding car lifting the trailing cars trucks off the rail and derailing the car. I even went so far as to design and 3D print a new coupler box that would allow for vertical and longitudinal movement to account for these track errors.

However, that still didn't address the issues of coupling and uncoupling a car under the diaphragms. This isn't an easy task, even with the passenger car uncoupling tool, and nearly impossible on a Union Station module that is five tracks away with a train sandwiched by a platform and an adjacent train. 

I've wrecked my brain trying to solve the operational deficiency of Sergent couplers and haven't found a solution. My last idea would be to use an under track uncoupler such as the Kadee to push the ball up and out of the socket to uncouple. But that still would require a centering spring to be designed to allow for remote coupling. 

So, as much as it pains me, the only solution seems to be Kadee couplers, with the hideous trip pins, in order to efficiently operate passenger trains. I cringe at the thought of such but can't see any other solutions. Anyone have any ideas?

Jacob Damron

Ft Worth, TX

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