G Scale Model Train Forum banner

Going Link and Pin

4789 Views 21 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  pdk
As I'm building some flat cars, I'm starting to think that
Link and Pin is the way to go. They look real, I would think they are fogiving inregards to vertical alignment, altot of it can be scratch built. This would be one locomotive and a set of cars. I saw some clever ways here for mating knuckle to link and pin. Has anyone else gone strictly L and P?
1 - 3 of 22 Posts
A detail that seems to be forgotten quite often when dealing with L&P is the dead blocks on each end of every car. There were (usually) two blocks of wood, sometimes even cast iron, mounted on either side of the coupler so that buff forces would be transmitted through them to the frame, instead of through the couplers. Also knowns as man-mashers, because of the fact that they were designed to come into contact, but were exactly where a brakeman had to stand in order to couple cars. They're a large part of why L&P couplers were so dangerous.

They're also a critical part of what made them work, and frequently omitted from models using L&P couplers. I would submit that backing moves with properly equipped cars would be much more reliable.
Posted By Les on 07/10/2008 6:25 PM
Mr. Rickmann
I was very glad to see your above post, particularly after reading the negative issues the moderator raised in the previous one. I intend to use L&P couplers exclusively.
Can you tell me how far apart the blocks were usually located? At or near the corners of the car, ala buffers, or near to the pocket?

Posted By tj-lee on 07/08/2008 2:06 PM
> the dead blocks on each end of every car
Do you use this on your cars? Any pictures?

I do not use dead blocks on my cars, but only because I do not have any cars yet. ;)" border=0> When I get around to building my fleet, I will definitely be using them, for the operational advantages and the unique detail.

I'm sorry that I cannot find any good photos of dead blocks. I just spent about 30 minutes searching the web, but the best I could find was a very grainy photo of a drawing that may or may not show anything useful. So short of photographing and posting copyrighted material, I can';t come up with pictures.

They're super simple to describe, however. Basically, they were two blocke, either of wood or cast iron, mounted to the end sill of a car on either side of the coupler. I think, but I'm not 100% sure, that they would line up with the center sills of the car, to transmit buff forces in a direct line. Since they're mounted to the end beam, they're usually above the coupler, but relatively close to the center of the car. They were long enough that when the draft springs compressed, the dead blocks would touch.

Of course, not all cars had dead blocks. One thing to remember about L&P couplers, though, is that they worked differently thana lot of us think. First off, they didn't swivel - they were mounted to a shaft that (usually) was able to slide in and out, but not side to side. Second, the links were short enough to allow the coupler pockets to touch. Thus, when shoving a train, the coupler faces would be transmitting the force, not the links.
See less See more
Posted By San Juan on 07/08/2008 3:34 PM
If there was a way to convert the Accucraft Whitcomb loco from link & pin I'd do it.
This little loco and one Bachmann mine car are all the link and pins I use:

Wouldn't it be possible to take a knuckle coupler (of whatever brand & design you prefer) and cut tongues onto the shaft, so that it could be mounted into the slots on the loco, and pinned just like a link would be? If the coupler shaft were cut to be a relatively tight fit in the slits, it should be pretty stable. For what it's worth, I'm pretty sure I've seen real locos with this arrangement.
See less See more
1 - 3 of 22 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.