Really need help/advice on lashup of two (2) 1931810 j3a hudsons. It seems lionel no longer ships a spare knuckle coupler with the engine. As it is impossible to hook existing front engine coupler to the j3a rear tender knuckle coupler, I need advice on what knuckle coupler would work and where i could get it from. Lionel was not able to help at all. It seems they have not issued a parts ipb for the j3a yet. I have replaced both engines front trucks as per GreggM's advice on the j3a mod thread, and really like the results. Now to get the engines lashed up. BTW it is interesting that lionel has taken all  reference/instruction to lashup of engines out of the manuals. 

Original Post

First off. You are going to need wide radius curves. I’m assuming the coupler is removable I run Kadee’s on everything. Every pilot is different. The freight ones are the least forgiving. A Kadee #805 will couple with your coil coupler. The coupler probably needs a range of 45 degrees in each direction. Depends on your curve size. The coupler will have to be modified. A drill press is handy to get a good straight hole for the screw. Some filing will be required. The pic below shows a Kadee on the left and what it will look like when done. It may look weak. I’ve filed them even more to get more swing. Remember if the run well together there is very little strain.The modified one is actually an Atlas. I find it easier to work with as the shank is longer and there’s a little more meat. The only issue. The don’t mate with coil couplers. But are fine with Kadee’s. They do make a newer version if you can find them that are more Kadee shaped.


 The 2 10 Wheelers have been joined for a year. They handle slightly tighter than 072 with no issue.




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There's a vendor on ebay selling some Lionel dummy couplers. They're not cheap but probably no worse that if you bought one from Lionel and they charged their flat rate shipping.

 Brassuers Electric trains also shows these couplers available on their website as well. I'm not sure if the current virus situation has closed them. Their parts depth is great, give them a ring.

Last edited by RickO

 I don’t own this engine. Is the coupler the type that lowers ?  I know it can be raised. Perhaps that’s why they don’t issue a dummy coupler. They may not work in this application.

 I ran across video of the 50th anniversary J3a with the dummy coupler mounted on it. Its from the same tooling that the new J3a 's are made from.

Not my video, take it for what its worth I guess:

Last edited by RickO

I think Dave C called it. Lionel didn't make a big coupler to fit the swivel mount of the scale coupler. You will have to adapt another coupler to make this work.


 After looking over Lionel’s site and looking at the mount for the drop style coupler. I see how the coupler mounts as Ricks video shows one. I did find that the Vision Line Hudson came with a dummy coupler and the Owners manual tells how to install it.

thanks everybody for the help. I was able to get a hold on a vision line Hudson 0 guage dummy coupler. worked fine. engine lashed up and running nicely.

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