I stumbled across a good idea. I use "link & pin" coupling for my cars. The area around the coupler box is usually plastic or brass or white metal. I needed some more pins so I took some 8 penny finishing nails, cut them to 1", rattle painted them red ozide primer. Then discovered an added feature. When the need to remove the "pin", I use a magnet which lifts the metal 8 penny nail and doesn't disturb the brass, plastic or white metal. Still have to use tweezers to install them, working on that!!
Hi Bill, most of my stuff is L&P also, As for couplers I generally use Ozark white metal couplers, but have experimented with homemade. For those I like using 1/4" x 3/8" plastic stryrene tube, drilled so I can use the standard mounting screw point. I prefer the scale Ozarks simply because they look so much more authentic.
For the link I also mostly use the links that Ozark supplies with their couplers but I also used small dia brass wire rod bent with an eyehole at one side and threaded a craft bead thru the wire and cemented in place to the base of the eyehole. I also use a thread or scale chain to secure the pin to the car. Pop rivets are way to large scalewise for me, even the smallest ones are giant, kinda like using a baseball bat as a pin.
I was at a steamup and one of the guys mentioned pop rivets. I only ones I've ever used were aluminum but was advised they are metals also. Sure enough, my visit revealed stainless steel, steel and aluminum. The smallest size is 1/8" diameter. I bought 100 for $3 and have them cut and painted. The advantage of nails is that you can drop down to a 6 penney finishing nail for small opening. And some of my cars have Kadee couplers. So if you have both, be sure to carry bread loaf twist ties so you can couple the Kadee and L&P together!
I use an Ozark #1035 link to connect L&P couplers to Kadee's. It is the longer link that I put a bend into to adjust for any height mismatch. One end slides up the Kadee "Air Hose" the other goes into the L&P normally. Have run many trains, including HEAVY logs cars, even in reverse and this is very reliable. Forget the twist ties!
This is the Ozark Miniatures #1035 link that Bruce Gathman is telling you about just above. No modifications needed, just bend the link as shown below. Application idea by (BRUCE GATHMAN). I have seen Bruce pull a caboose & 10 disconnects w/metal wheelsets each loaded with 3 to 5 Lilac logs.