Replacing trucks, which one ?

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by Biased turkey, Dec 4, 2006.

  1. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

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    I have 2 40 ' boxcars: one made by Life Like ( TH&B ) has rapido couplers and the 2nd one made by Intermountain has a "dummy" knuckle coupler ( made in 1 piece ).
    I would like to replace the whole trucks with Micro Trains trucks.
    MicroTrains has various types of trucks, such as Barber, Bettendorf etc...
    Which one should I get ?
    Trucks are fixed to the car with a plastic pin, but that plastic pin varies in diameter and size from one manufacturer to the other.
    Shall I use the original pin to hold the MicroTrains trucks, or does MicroTrains supply various pins and shims with their couiplers ?
    I'm quite confused about that subject.
  2. umtrr-author

    umtrr-author Member

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    MTL supplies two pins which cover most of the rolling stock that is generally available. The big exception is the clip on trucks and the large clip pins in some Con-Cor cars, but there are workarounds for both (somewhat annoying but doable).

    On the Life-Like car, you should be able to use the pin you have from the old trucks. Let me check an Intermountain car for you and I'll reply again shortly but I think you use the same pin again.

    The transition between friction bearing (like the Bettendorf) and roller bearing (like the Barber) trucks was the 1960's. By 1970 they were more or less a requirement for new and rebuilt cars in interchange service. I am going to guess that either type would work based on my speculation that the TH&B car is the yellow one with the black door, roof and ends (am I right?). What is the road name and paint scheme of the Intermountain car?
  3. train1

    train1 Member

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    Just re-use the old pins - they will work fine. You may have to use the washers in 'some' applications depending on the car for car-end clearance.
  4. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

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    First, thanks to both of you for taking some of your time to reply.
    Question: are the MS 2 pins and shims enclosed in the truck package or do they have to be purchased separately.
    I visited the MS website , they have bigs pictures of their trucks and the one that seems to match the one I have is the Bettendorf one.
    Here are the pics of the 2 cars:
  5. umtrr-author

    umtrr-author Member

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    The State of Maine boxcar has a build date of 1956 so the Bettendorf trucks should be fine.

    I don't have the TH&B car (although I see I guessed right) but the CDS Lettering Guide shows a time period of 1960 and later for the yellow and black paint scheme. So you're still OK with Bettendorf on that one also.

    The Intermountain truckpins will work with MTL trucks, I just tried it on one of mine.
  6. train1

    train1 Member

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    Go to your local Hobby Shop and pick up the appropriate 'bulk pack' (10 sets of trucks with couplers) they have the '"o" rings and M/T pins- and you'll aways appreciate having extras around.
    Keep an eye for the small, medium and long shank length for each specific application.
  7. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

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    Now that I know the Bettendorf truck is the most appropriate I have to find some place to buy it.

    As suggested I would like to purchase the "bulk pack". I dindn't find any supplier here in Montreal , some hobby store sell couplers or single truck pack.
    I sometime buy online at the " Credit Valley Raylway " in Ontario, but they don't sell the bulk pack either.
    Is there any online shop in Ontario or in Canada that sell the bulkpack ?
    Last but important question: what shank length shoul I get ? What dictate the shank length ? car type, track radius ? turnout number ?
    Thanks again for your help train1 and umtrr-author