Author Topic: Trailers spanning flats  (Read 1373 times)

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Smike

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Trailers spanning flats
« on: January 12, 2014, 07:39:56 PM »
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New to me. Should be no issues with curves as it works just like its turning on the road. I would assume they would only do this with drawbar connected flats, as having a coupler break would make for an interesting scene. This setup allows for 3 53' trailers over 2 89 flats.


lajmdlr

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2014, 08:14:38 PM »
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Guess you just started railfanning. Long runner pig flats have been around around 20 years or so. Back in my intermodal modeling days made four of them using Walthers & Accurail flats . Even mixed them just like TTX did.

Andy Jackson
Bellflower CA
Andy Jackson
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GaryHinshaw

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2014, 09:19:45 PM »
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Yep, Long Runners have been around for a while, and a few do still ply the rails.  They are problematic on model curves however:



Even with 18" curves, I have to use special wheel bogies so the spanning trailer doesn't ride up the rub rails on this flat (like they are in this very old shot).  They look cool though.

Smike

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2014, 10:29:06 PM »
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Love it Gary!  8)

Ike the BN Freak

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2014, 11:21:14 PM »
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I need to make two or three of these cars with my extra MT flats.

But need to figure a way to do the drawbar.  Thinking an etched piece that I can fit into a MT or accumate coupler box would work.  Just need to figure out how to etch it...or have someone etch me one.

GaryHinshaw

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2014, 01:59:20 AM »
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The long runner kits that N Scale Kits produce come with an etched drawbar.  See the last photo on this page:

http://www.nscalekits.co.uk/89ftbldg.html

You might be able to purchase them separately from Peter if he has enough in stock.

Ike the BN Freak

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2014, 06:53:03 PM »
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The long runner kits that N Scale Kits produce come with an etched drawbar.  See the last photo on this page:

http://www.nscalekits.co.uk/89ftbldg.html

You might be able to purchase them separately from Peter if he has enough in stock.

Was hoping for one that fits into coupler boxes, wonder if Athearn will sell me some from the husky stacks, forgot about those until a few minutes ago.

davefoxx

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2014, 06:55:36 PM »
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I would just hack out a drawbar from scrap styrene.  I've done this before to close-couple F-units before I converted the locomotives to Unimates.  The styrene will be plenty stout.

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GaryHinshaw

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2014, 08:38:48 PM »
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I made some styrene drawbars for the Walthers 3-unit Thrall sets (see the self-explanatory photos below).  The same technique should work with the 1019 couplers in the MT flats, with the caveat that they might be a little bit problematic if you push them through S curves because of the long lever arms.  But the ones pictured below work fine pushing or pulling.






I don't remember the size of the styrene stock I used, but I can measure it when I get home, if you want to know.

rswinnerton

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2014, 07:41:51 AM »
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Ahh yes, the 'Triple 57 Longrunner'. These cars we're drawbar connected for several reasons:
1) at the time, trucking companies were moving heavily into 53' trailers and experimenting with 57' trailers. The idea with this arrangement was that one 89' flat couldn't carry 2 53' trailers but 2 together could carry 3 53' or 57' trailers.
2) draw bar connecting 2 cars together effectively made them one car and use rates were billed as such. With the growing popularity of double stacks and spine cars, Trailer Train needed better utilization of its huge 89' fleet. This thought process also gave us the GATX drawbar connected 'shorty' Airslide cars.

Stacks and Spines won the day and the 89' flat (draw bar or not) is phasing out as they pass the 40 and 50 year service rules. 53' trailers are now the backbone of the OTR trucking fleet and 57' trailers are a novelty and only used in certain portions of the west.
Russ Swinnerton
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wcfn100

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2014, 12:13:56 PM »
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2) draw bar connecting 2 cars together effectively made them one car and use rates were billed as such. With the growing popularity of double stacks and spine cars, Trailer Train needed better utilization of its huge 89' fleet. This thought process also gave us the GATX drawbar connected 'shorty' Airslide cars.

This also goes back to the 60's with articulated flat cars and there were even 40' reefers 'permanently' connected to get better shipping rates.

Jason

lajmdlr

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2014, 08:30:14 PM »
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I need to make two or three of these cars with my extra MT flats.

But need to figure a way to do the drawbar.  Thinking an etched piece that I can fit into a MT or accumate coupler box would work.  Just need to figure out how to etch it...or have someone etch me one.

Made mine from square brass tubing of right thickness. Then smashed the ends  & drilled to clear 2/56 screws - very simple. Smashed just enough to be hidden by coupler box
Andy Jackson
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nkalanaga

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2014, 12:53:39 AM »
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Another way to make a drawbar. if you don't mind simple soldering, is brass tube with two twisted wire loops.  The loops go over the post in the draft gear, and the twisted tails are solder into the tube.  Harder than simply drilling a hole in a bar, but the thinner design allows for more play on curves.
N Kalanaga
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lajmdlr

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2014, 03:43:37 PM »
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Smashing the ends does same thing as soldering loops to the drawbar.
Andy Jackson
Santa Fe Springs CA
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nkalanaga

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Re: Trailers spanning flats
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2014, 12:57:23 AM »
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Very true, but some might prefer twisting and soldering wire to drilling.  I've done it both ways, once or twice each, and which I would use depends on circumstances.  In my case, I work at night, in a small trailer, and electric drills disturb the other sleepers (human and 7 cats).  Hand drilling brass, especially in quantity, is hard on my fingers.  Soldering is quiet.

Also, glue would work as well as solder here.  It's just that I usually have better luck soldering than with superglues.
N Kalanaga
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