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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a 74-yr old newbie with utterly no exp w model railroading or any similar craft/hobby. I recently purchased a new n scale Kato EMD diesel and two new, different sets of Kato freight cars. The couplers on all of the cars, regardless of set, are appreciably, visibly lower than the coupler on the loco. Indeed, they are so much lower that they slide almost completely UNDER the loco coupler. This can’t be correct (can it?). Any advice on what the problem is or what to do about (I’ve an micro-trains n scale coupler height gauge on order but will be a week or more before I receive)? Much thanks in advance.
 

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Good point are we talking HO or N scale, Ho would be Kadee, N would be MTL if I'm not mistaken.
I have two N scale Kato loco's and have to say not a big fan of Kato couplers.
They do hook well with my MTL rolling stock however it does take some some effort once and awhile.
Don't have any Kato rolling stock so can't comment on that aspect.
 

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Good point are we talking HO or N scale, Ho would be Kadee, N would be MTL if I'm not mistaken.
I have two N scale Kato loco's and have to say not a big fan of Kato couplers.
They do hook well with my MTL rolling stock however it does take some some effort once and awhile.
Don't have any Kato rolling stock so can't comment on that aspect.
Well seeing as he posted in the N Scale forum, I'm gonna go out on a limb and say N scale....
 
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I am a 74-yr old newbie with utterly no exp w model railroading or any similar craft/hobby. I recently purchased a new n scale Kato EMD diesel and two new, different sets of Kato freight cars. The couplers on all of the cars, regardless of set, are appreciably, visibly lower than the coupler on the loco. Indeed, they are so much lower that they slide almost completely UNDER the loco coupler. This can’t be correct (can it?). Any advice on what the problem is or what to do about (I’ve an micro-trains n scale coupler height gauge on order but will be a week or more before I receive)? Much thanks in advance.
Getting the coupler height gauge is the right call. You really should wait until it arrives before doing anything. Most likely, the loco's coupler is mounted too high, and will have to be shimmed down to the proper height.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I am a 74-yr old newbie with utterly no exp w model railroading or any similar craft/hobby. I recently purchased a new n scale Kato EMD diesel and two new, different sets of Kato freight cars. The couplers on all of the cars, regardless of set, are appreciably, visibly lower than the coupler on the loco. Indeed, they are so much lower that they slide almost completely UNDER the loco coupler. This can’t be correct (can it?). Any advice on what the problem is or what to do about (I’ve an micro-trains n scale coupler height gauge on order but will be a week or more before I receive)? Much thanks in advance.
Sorry folks, old, non-nimble somewhat arthritic fingers. KATO couplers! New, presumably unaltered n scale Kato loco, Kato cars. I’ve solved part of the problem—a small piece of wood (now removed) had lodged under one section of the track, pushing upward whatever trucks and couplers rested on that spot of the track. The loco-car misalignment is much less pronounced now, but they remain somewhat misaligned and refuse to couple w/o my direct manual intervention. I will chk coupler heights when my micro-trains height gauge arrives…but til then, thanks greatly to all who responded and if any of you have any thoughts please do share.
 

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I run quite a few of the Kato locomotives and most of my passenger cars are Kato also. I do have two sets of the Kato mixed freight cars, a set of their well cars, and two sets of the coal gondolas. I have never noticed a problem with the height of the mixed freight cars, but the well cars and gondolas do not work as well as I would like. The gondolas do not have a true knuckle style coupler and are designed where you have to lift them and drop them down into the other coupler. They also have a lot more vertical free play in them than I would like. Based on my experience, I would be curious which freight cars you have when you say two different sets.

I also have trouble with all of the MTL freight cars staying coupled with the Kato locos. They work with my other brands of locos though. My son picked up the height gauge at the LHS this week, so we will be working on this on Saturday (I hope).
 

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I think couplers often constitute a PIA. My Kato couplers sometimes seem to wear out. Often my Micro Trains Line (MTL) won't couple to Kato couplers or even to each other, but I still converted most of my freight cars to MTL trucks & couplers. Most of my passenger cars have Kato, but I have ordered MTL trucks with couplers for a couple of Atlas cars where the wheels seem to drag despite application of graphite. MTL is the best standard, and with the passenger cars cost of replacing all those Kato couplers becomes an issue, so sometimes you live with the PIA. If the Kato couplers become a pain on the freight cars, you can get MTL trucks with MTL couplers. I have converted many of my Kato freight cars to MTL trucks. Ultimately I just don't run freight cars much. Solves that issue.
 
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