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Kadees on USA F3

1863 Views 9 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Trains West
Hey everyone.

I picked up a USAT F3 in B&M scheme at the big show in Springfield MA last weekend. $150 show special! Anyhow my other B&M locos have kadees on them and I would like this one to have kadees as well.

I went to do the install last night but found it a little confusing. Before I left the show, I stopped at the Kadee booth and purchased some couplers. They told me that the #787 coupler was for the rear of the F3 A and the #831 was for the front. The front coupler seems to be the one that is a little confusing. Anyone have any experience with this, advise or maybe even a how to with pics? (I can dream can't I).

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Pete, I haven’t done it myself as I model narrow gauge steam, but this link to Kadee’s page may give you a few tips until someone can give you some better help.

I use the pedestal mount with success... same coupler on each end of the loco, follow the kadee instructions.

I have 6 of them so fitted, all running in a consist, and have pulled 40 cars with them for 7 hours straight, it works.

Regards, Greg
personly though I have some running with the coupler mounted to the petastal I find they can have some slop that keeps the coupler from staying at the right coupler hight .....

you can pull the screw on the bottom of the swing part and file the pin a little to tighten it up but if you are running bigger radius I would take a little time and build a solid shim to body mount it and make it more stable
Hi Everyone, I'm new here and don't usually have much to say but this is something I've actually done so I'm happy to be able to contribute my idea. I removed the original pivoting mounting pad and spacer, filed down the raised circle on the pedestal, removed the edges of the coupler gear box -- see highlighted portion of photo below, and then bolted the gear box directly to the original pedestal. This way everything is really solid, and I added a bent strip of brass to prevent the gear box from rotating too far (I needed some rotation for smaller radius curves). I don't remember what Kadee # this is, but it looks like a small offset #1 scale coupler with a 831/1831 gear box.

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In answer to Scott:

I go through the pedestal and arm and make sure there is very little vertical slop. Normally this can be easily fine tuned with tightening the pivot screw, but there have been a couple of times where I took a couple of light swipes on the post to reduce the slop (the center post now less tall).

Regards, Greg
Hey guys
Thanks for the answers. Usually this kinda stuff doesn't give me too much trouble, but this one threw me off for some reason. I have two GP-9s and they were no trouble at all.

Anyhow im gonna go give it a try. The reason for the Kadees is that was what I put on my two GPs. I would like to be able to run the F unit with the GP but the USA and Kadee coupler don't seem to work so well. If all goes well I might have some snow pictures to post tomorrow. If i can find my tracks
Mission accomplished!
The F3 takes two 831s. They seem to work really well. I couldn't find my coupler gauge so I had to use my GP9 to check the height. One think that semmed to help was I found a mounting bar for a hook and loop coupler in the bag of parts that came with the loco. This made the install much easier.

I also did my new B&M S4. I used 787s ad directed by kadee but they are in fact too low. I will be replacing them with 831s. It irks me a little bit that Kadee told me the wrong couplers for both locomotives. My origonal thought was to use 831s. Grrrrrr!

At least the install is done. Now its time to hit the outside and them runnin in the snow!
Posted By benshell on 01/29/2009 1:25 PM
Hi Everyone, I'm new here and don't usually have much to say...

Well, you know what they say about a picture and a 1,000 words!
Thanks for posting those Ben. Nice and clear.
Certainly looks very sturdy!
I like how benshell reworked and mounted the coupler ...... I have one more A-B set to do and I think I will give this a try ....
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