Author Topic: Kato Autoracks arrived.  (Read 2312 times)

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SkipGear

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Kato Autoracks arrived.
« on: February 20, 2014, 04:11:34 PM »
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Kato autoracks arrived at the shop today. They look pretty good, not as detailed as an RC or Microtrains car but how detailed can a silver box be. The big stumper is....the trucks have electrical pickup, why? It makes doing an EOT device a snap now but other than that, there is no reason for these cars to have pickup. I thought maybe they were using the leaf springs inside to help stabilize the car but opened one up and nope, no springs. The contact tabs just stick up through the floor. The only other reason I can think of is to use them as rotation stops so the trucks don't spin around endlessly durring handling but there has to be a cheaper way to do that.
Tony Hines

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2014, 04:13:21 PM »
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Don't all of their trucks have pickups?
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SkipGear

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2014, 04:14:49 PM »
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Don't all of their trucks have pickups?

Nope, only the passenger cars and caboose have pickup. Traditionaly freight cars do not.
Tony Hines

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2014, 05:09:13 PM »
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It's to electrify the vandal screens to cut down on graffiti decals...
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bnsfdash8

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2014, 08:21:17 PM »
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Do the Amtrak ones have marker light? If so that could be the reason for the pickups.
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Jeff AKA St0rm

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #5 on: February 20, 2014, 10:25:27 PM »
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I have over 200 Kato coal porters and they all have pickup as well. All Kato cars have pickups this is why they roll so well the metal pick ups and the metal wheels. I ran my set of CP auto racks today with my RC cars. they run great and look great for the price. keep in mind that RC cars are $40 MSRP and Kato is $100 for 4 cars so $25 a piece. I will get some photos tomorrow.

Bob Horn

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #6 on: February 20, 2014, 11:07:06 PM »
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Tony, it almost looks like a future snap-in project for lighting on the raised area on the car floor. Would make sense, no? Bob. A fred module would be great, where is Sunrise when we need them. ( I know they are long gone)

SkipGear

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2014, 11:45:10 PM »
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I have over 200 Kato coal porters and they all have pickup as well. All Kato cars have pickups this is why they roll so well the metal pick ups and the metal wheels. I ran my set of CP auto racks today with my RC cars. they run great and look great for the price. keep in mind that RC cars are $40 MSRP and Kato is $100 for 4 cars so $25 a piece. I will get some photos tomorrow.

Coal Porters are about the only thing I don't own from Kato so I didn't know about those. ACF hoppers, JNR Tank, and the various Maxi well cars do not have pickup.

The only reason I commented on the pickup is because the needle point wipers showing through the trucks was the first thing I saw when looking at them. It is really distracting. They need some blackening or something on them to hide them. These are set up for pickup, it's not just to give a bering surface for the wheels. The posts extend inside the car about a 1/4 inch. An EOT or some sort of block detection are the only things that make sense in this case.
Tony Hines

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2014, 11:52:30 PM »
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Use them to power a smoke machine, some pulsating lights, and a sound chip. Don't forget "Beware of creature" signs on the outside. :trollface:

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #9 on: February 21, 2014, 12:10:13 AM »
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Interesting...

Looking at http://katousa.com/N/Autorack/index.html they clearly state:

Shock absorber construction and all wheel electrical pickup on blackened metal wheels promise a smooth ride with the capacity for aftermarket additions such as FREDs or other EOT lights.

In my experience "shock absorber construction" uses metal strips over the truck pickup tabs to provide cushioning. At least that is what I've seen in the past in locomotives and in coal hoppers from Kato (which also featured shock absorber construction).  And this model does not have those metal springs?  There is nothing to cushion the trucks?

If that is the case then Kato either changed their specs between the writeup on the website and production, or your models are simply missing the springs.  I would contact Kato (quoting the statement I pointed you to above), and ask them why your models do not have the metal springs (or as they call it: shock absorbers)..
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SkipGear

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2014, 12:15:17 AM »
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Interesting...

Looking at http://katousa.com/N/Autorack/index.html they clearly state:

Shock absorber construction and all wheel electrical pickup on blackened metal wheels promise a smooth ride with the capacity for aftermarket additions such as FREDs or other EOT lights.

In my experience "shock absorber construction" uses metal strips over the truck pickup tabs to provide cushioning. At least that is what I've seen in the past in locomotives and in coal hoppers from Kato (which also featured shock absorber construction).  And this model does not have those metal springs?  There is nothing to cushion the trucks?

If that is the case then Kato either changed their specs between the writeup on the website and production, or your models are simply missing the springs.  I would contact Kato (quoting the statement I pointed you to above), and ask them why your models do not have the metal springs (or as they call it: shock absorbers)..

Now we are getting somewhere. It looked like they had planned for the shock absorber suspension but when you pop off the body, the tabs stick up so far into the body that there is no place for the springs to even mount.  I think somebody changed gears mid design and nixed them. There is no apparent way to mount the leaf springs in the car.
Tony Hines

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2014, 09:16:01 AM »
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I will wait until someone splits up one of the CP sets on the secondary market to pick up a single car.
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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2014, 01:03:08 AM »
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I will wait until someone splits up one of the CP sets on the secondary market to pick up a single car.

Anyone else waiting or wanting to do this?

I'd like one each of the CP and CN cars.

ryan_wilkerson

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2014, 01:25:06 AM »
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Anyone else waiting or wanting to do this?

I'd like one each of the CP and CN cars.

Yes, I want one of each since that's about as many as I've seen in a rack train.

Jeff AKA St0rm

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Re: Kato Autoracks arrived.
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2014, 06:40:54 PM »
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i took a few pictures today. After running them for a few days they are a little light and pop off the rails a little to easy. I will run them again Monday with more weight added.