Re: [SergentEng] We've got trouble in River City

Mike Conder

Always fun.

It is the Rustoleum that I was trying to remember, I have a can at home.  It really looks good, BTW.

I am curious about the corrosion cause, though.  Do you live in a humid part of the country?  I'm in Denver, have not seen any problems.  Have a good friend in Minnesota, he has more humidity in general but also has not seen problems ... at least, he has not mentioned them.  He also uses the Rustoleum IIRC.

Maybe combination of air pollution, or living on the coast, or ... ?

Mike Conder

On Wed, Jul 1, 2015 at 9:46 AM, Mike Van Hove mvanhove@... [SergentEng] <SergentEng@...> wrote:


Frank replied to an email I sent him, in which he said that Rustoleum might prevent the corrosion.

I have not tried this, as all the couplers I have are installed or at least, painted and in a box, waiting to be installed.  Those are the ones in the box that have the corrosion on the parts where the paint has been rubbed off.

I guess the Sharons that I have on order (I finally bit the bullet and i'm starting a new HOn3 layout) will have to be sprayed with Rustoleum.  Maybe that will be the "Miricle Cure".

I dug around and found Frank's message.

I copy it here, in his exact words:

"I don’t think the ACC will migrate over time. One thing that I imagine could happen is that corrosion could build up inside the coupler when not in use and that could keep the ball from lifting and falling properly. If you peer into a stuck coupler when you put the uncoupling wand over it... can you see the ball move up into the top casting? You can see this with a coupler that is operating properly (at least I can with good light and my reading glasses). If the ball doesn’t lift, then there might be corrosion build up in the ball cylinder on the top castings. Corrosion on the zinc castings will be in the form of a white powder on the surface that is typically very easy to remove. If you have a bigger magnet than the ones in the uncoupling wands, you can probably force the ball to come up. Then put the magnet on the bottom of the coupler to force it back down. Once you repeat this a few times the corrosion will be knocked of the critical surfaces as original operation will be restored. I haven’t actually seen this happen – even though I have tried to make it happen by purposely leaving couplers in damp locations for an extended period of time. If you are actually seeing this problem, then I would recommend this big magnet trick. I would also recommend coating the ball cylinder in the top casting and the ball seat in the bottom castings with Neolube prior to assembly (or reassembly as the cast may be). The Neolube is a great corrosion inhibitor. One of the reasons I recommend painting the couplers with Rustoleum is that it includes corrosion inhibitors. Even though the Rustoleum is only on the outside surface of the couplers, its ingredients act as a sacrificial electrode to prevent corrosion and that works for the whole part – not just the surface where the paint is applied. Please let me know what you find out and share with the Yahoo group. I’m certain those guys would be very interested in your findings.

So, I guess I need Neolube inside, and Rustoleum on the outside.

Ain't it fun?

The other Mike

On Jul 1, 2015, at 9:58 AM, Mike Conder vulturenest1@... [SergentEng] wrote:


Interesting ...

I've been using the new Sharon couplers (I am a TOC narrow gauger) and the website now recommends using a solvent-based spray (Krylon?  I forget exactly).  Wonder if that would help prevent some of this.

It does sound like some sort of atmospheric corrosion, a bit unexpected.

Mike Conder

On Wed, Jul 1, 2015 at 8:06 AM, Mike Van Hove mvanhove@... [SergentEng] <SergentEng@...> wrote:

Mike, some were painted with acrylic craft paint, some were not painted at all.

I believe the painting was done after assembly.  The painting was done with very light, thin coats.  They were brush painted.  I did try to keep the paint on the outside of the couplers.

Some of the painted couplers have the white dust, some don't.  Most of the unpainted ones have the white dust.

I looked at them again, and I see that the painted ones have it on the face of the moveable knuckle and the inside of the fixed jaw, where the paint got rubbed off when I did the "Breaking in".

It would appear the white dust occurs where there is no paint.


another Mike

On Jul 1, 2015, at 1:20 AM, Mike Conder vulturenest1@... [SergentEng] wrote:


Mike, did you paint your couplers before assembly, or assemble them without painting?

Mike Conder

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