Kato C30-7 MT coupler height issue

Roger McCarty May 5, 2018

  1. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    Purchased a used Kato C30-7 176-301 which included MT couplers. Having trouble with coupler height as measured by MT coupler height gauge.

    This Kato model is not one which requires a MT conversion kit. Instead it has a removable clip. When I use the clip, the coupler droops and is too low.

    So I decided to screw into the top of the pilot to stop the sagging. When screwed in, the coupler is about 1mm too high.

    Surely I must be missing something, never had trouble like this before. How can the height be off by so much? Is this a known issue?

    The opening in the pilot is an ~exact~ fit for the size of the (MT1015?) coupler.

    Is there such a thing as an overslung MT coupler rather than the MT2004 underslung?

    Trying to figure out my options to resolve. Any suggestions welcome.

    In case anyone considers asking, yes the shell is fully seated. Scratching my head ...

    Thanks!
     
  2. wpsnts

    wpsnts TrainBoard Supporter

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    Maybe the coupler was assembled with the box upside down. Although by your description it's probably not the case. Try some other 1015's if you haven't already. MT says it's the one to use. Product code 001 02 000. Are the mounting pads behind the hole in the pilot flush with the opening?
    Just some thoughts without being able to see what you have.
    You got me.:confused::unsure:
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2018
  3. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks Dave, mounting pads are perfectly flush with the opening. Coupler draft box doesn't appear to be upside down compared to others. Can't see that it would make much difference either way.

    Only crazy thing I can imagine is if someone decided to install larger diameter wheels. I've never seen alignment so far off.
     
  4. Ike the BN Freak

    Ike the BN Freak TrainBoard Member

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    Add a shim to the top of the coupler box to lower it
     
  5. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

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    Mt makes a 'shim' that goes between a coupler box and the mounting surface. It should bring the coupler down to the right height. JMO
     
  6. MK

    MK TrainBoard Member

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    I've had this issue with some of my Katos, not all. As others have suggested, you need to shim. I made my own with thin material I had lying around in the basement. Didn't buy the MT stuff.
     
  7. ns737

    ns737 TrainBoard Supporter

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    are you shure they are 1015's on the engine and not a different coupler?
     
  8. bman

    bman TrainBoard Member

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    Microtrains provides shims with their packs of 1015/16 couplers. I'm guessing the individual who you purchased the loco off of didn't use them. I have a C30-7 and I didn't have to use the shim. I did ditch the clip and use an Atlas screw to hold the 1015 in place. I'm also wondering if a Microtrains coupler other than a 1015 was used. Not that it matters that much. Like it was mentioned above it is easy enough to make a shim to use on the top of the coupler to lower the height of the coupler.
     
  9. wpsnts

    wpsnts TrainBoard Supporter

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    I remember years ago reading about assembling the 1015 upside down to make a subtle change in the height. Like others here I have used shims. You may have to file the openings a bit.
     
  10. tehachapifan

    tehachapifan TrainBoard Member

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    Could it possibly have the "underslung" coupler that, as I recall, had to be used on at least the earlier runs of the C44-9W?
     
  11. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    Thanks everyone for getting me on track.

    I've tried swapping out couplers, shells and mechanisms with known couplers, etc. The C30-7 and U30C share the same guts so I have plenty of things to try.

    The misalignment seems to be the result of several very small problems. I can now clearly see that the pilot does have enough space to allow a shim above the coupler and possibly no need to file the opening. I'll address issues with the power strips and see what is needed.
     
  12. bill pearce

    bill pearce TrainBoard Member

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    I don't think it would be a change in wheels, who makes replacement wheels for Kato in different sizes?

    If I'm not totally senile, I think I remember that the C30-7 came out when Kato was having trouble making things that all used 1015's. That was shen MT was making a whole bunch of over and underslung couplers for different conversions. I also remember it was E's and the C30. Anyone younger with functioning brain cells help!
     
  13. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

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    As far as I know all the 105/16 packs come with shims to adjust coupler height and I have on rare occasions had to use two shims to get the coupler where it should be. I faintly remember having to use shims on some SD-45s and SD-40s.
     
  14. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    Yes, the 1015/1016 packs do come with shims. I've measured again and it will be necessary to file the pilot if shims are needed. I wanted to be absolutely certain there was no obvious alternative before I attack the shell with tools. Misalignment of 1mm is huge and I have never seen so severe a case.

    If I allow the couplers to droop just a bit they seem to work OK but look silly.

    I'll probably put this on the back burner and think about it.

    Thanks!
     
  15. ns737

    ns737 TrainBoard Supporter

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    if the pilot still has the notchs on the bottom of the opening that is not a 1015 coupler. I have two c30-7's and to fit the 1015's I had to remove the natchs.
     
  16. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    Interesting ... The plot thickens ... Are you certain you have no shims?
     
  17. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    I don't think that anyone does, I was simply looking for any possible explanation to explain the height. I've compared wheels and they appear stock size.
     
  18. Ike the BN Freak

    Ike the BN Freak TrainBoard Member

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    Could be the shell isn't fully snapped down on the chassis.

    Or could be a new run shell on an old frame, which if that is the case, the light tubes are hitting the LEDs and not allowing the shell to fit right. But for this, I think the difference is more than 1 mm
     
  19. Roger McCarty

    Roger McCarty TrainBoard Member

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    While the power strips did have a noticeable crown to them, it wasn't causing any real problem.

    The shell is fully snapped down to the mechanism with the normal satisfying click.

    I removed the LEDs and the cab shield as a test. No improvement.

    Thanks for the suggestions!
     
  20. ns737

    ns737 TrainBoard Supporter

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    no shims and they are perfect to the coupler gage.
     

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