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Reply to "Step by Step Photos: How to Put Kadees on Atlas Cars"

Originally posted by Dtrainmaster:
Rich Montague,
Did you add the fixed pilot to the #4030? Could you retain the regular (large) couplers with it?

Yes, I did add the fixed pilot. No, you cannot retain the large coupler. It just won't fit. The picture of ATSF 4030 is a little dark, so look at the picture #116, the GP 60M that follows. Both use the same pilot. As you will see, there's not enough room for the large tinplate electrocoupler to fit through the pilot. Even if that were not a problem, the large coupler mounts to the truck. A truck mounted coupler will foul in a fixed pilot and keep the truck from pivoting in turns. And as the guys point out, its kind of self-defeating to install a prototypical fixed pilot but retain an unrealistic coupler.

I'm guessing the reason you ask is that you like the fixed pilot, but don't like the idea of losing the electrocoupler's convenience. For me the scale accuracy is well worth uncoupling by hand. Remember, uncoupling is only part of the functionality equation. For all the ease of uncoupling with tinplate couplers and electrocouplers, they're not so hot when it comes to coupling, especially with a small cut of cars. That and appearance are where Kadees shine. And coupling must be at least half the equation, I should think.

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