EZ Mate Couplers

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by alexander, Oct 4, 2006.

  1. alexander

    alexander Member

    EZ Mate Couplers- Mark II?


    2 questions.

    first, are Bachmann EZ mate couplers any good for a small layout, with 7 cars at most trains.

    will they work well going in reverse? better than my current Horn Hooks? do they support auto magnetic uncloupling?

    above all, can they handle 7 car trains without breaking?


    PS: i am going away for a few days and may not be back on again
  2. alexander

    alexander Member

    another question, how many uncoupling magnets will i need on stub ended yard tracks? will 2 be ok? (one at the front, one halfway through?) and how many on my runaround? i'll use atlas RTS to show you if needed. its a main line, with a runaround track, and the yard coming off the runaround (siding it really is) Oh yeah, i'm fouling the main all the time, tho its only a branch line terminus as i model it
  3. Scoobie

    Scoobie Member

    Hi Alexander, EZ mates are ok. I have found that the springs pop out of the EZ mates easy. I use Kadee " whisker & #5. You can find At www.kadee.com. They are great.
  4. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    First question..Best place for those Bachann couplers is the closest trash can..In this case your horn hooks will be more reliable.McHenry makes a scale coupler that has a knuckle spring like KD uses on their coupler.Best solution would be to buy a KD 20 pair bulk pack of #5 coupler..The investment in KD coupler will pay dividends in smooth and reliable coupler operation.
    Question number two..I recommend a magnet on each yard track and at both ends of the run around..Hower..There is a better and some what cheaper method..Use manual uncoupling on the tracks you can reach and magnets on the tracks you can't reach..
  5. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    I have had the opposite experience to Brakie (I know - big help... :rolleyes: ;)). I have installed the Bachmann couplers when provided, and they are adequate. However, I do replace them with Kadees as there is sometimes a chance that my cars will become part of a much longer train when operating...

    I do not recommend magnets at all - in addition to getting them in exactly right so they will operate, you also need flawless trackwork that is level (so slack can be introduced), perfect engines (slow speed operation is essential), and the couplers themselves have to be working properly.

    I much prefer to uncouple by hand - that's the way the prototype does it...! ;) :D

  6. alexander

    alexander Member

    ok, i'll prolly do manual uncoupling, with one or two magnets just for the sake of it (showing off value lol)

    i've got OK trackwork, not the greatest, not the worst tho. yards are ok too.

    i'm pysacially and fiscally restrained in what i can do, at the moment its either Bachmann or Horns. yep, greaat choice.

    My layout is about 35 square feet, 2 doors together, so, its not large, the longest train i've ran was 20 cars, but it almost derailed on my 18' curves. (yep, the crappiness again)

    so, the jury is out on Bachmanns? remember, i'm onlyrunning 7 car trains, normally 5, and, i'm upgrading from horn hooks.

    and, magnets, they are ok, but,just more thecnical things that dont work?

    i'll give each a try and tell you all how it goes
  7. alexander

    alexander Member

    forgot to mention, i'm using old Lifelike and Tyco cars with the Talgo trucks, its the only way it will work with the sharp curves. this is the best way to get serviceable operation (with horn hooks, are knuckel couplers better?)
  8. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    With talgo trucks nothing will work for backing around curves. The nature of the beast is that truck mounted couplers will always try to push the truck off to the outside of the curve. You could try to body mount couplers with one screw in the center of the draft gear. Leave the screw loose enough that it can allow the coupler box to rotate. You can try the Bachmann's. I bought a Bachmann 2-8-0 at a train show, and didn't have any Kaddees with me, so I installed the E-Z mates. I was running short trains, less than 10 cars, but the couplers still started loosing tension in a couple of hours. I would not try mounting magnets. Kaddee is now selling an inexpensive pick that you slip between the jaws of the knuckle and twist and it opens. The Kaddee pick will work with any knuckle coupler I think.
  9. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    Bamboo skewers, wooden picks, and small (jewellers) screwdrivers also work. It takes a bit of practice to get the right angle to flip them open, but after a while, you'll get the hang of it...

  10. alexander

    alexander Member

    ok, thanks, i guess when backing around curves i will have to go verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry sloooooooooooow

    i thought it was the Horn Hooks, not the Talgos that caused the problem?????????

    losing tension? i take it thats bad? what will it do?

    thanks all for your comments. Kadees are only slightly more expensive
  11. alexander

    alexander Member

    ok, thanks. i'll have a go at it
  12. Thoroughbreed

    Thoroughbreed Member

    Ok, my thoughts are the bachmann's are only good if you glue them in the shut position, as I've done with my passenger consists. After awhile the lil plastic that they use for a spring gets sprung and they no longer function correctly, so I close them and apply a lil super glue and then they work fine. I've always done the "hand uncouple".:thumb:
    And also the talgo truck are the reason for derails, not horn hook couplers, as the pressure is put upon the truck from the previous and following cars.
  13. alexander

    alexander Member

    ok, talgo cause derails, thats good to know, now i will start with fising my Horns

    thanks for all of your help
  14. santafewillie

    santafewillie Member

    In the long run KD's will prove to be more reliable and less expensive in my experience. The plastic springs on the EZ Mates like the the older McHenry's will not last long. On railcars that I use everyday, the average lifespan is about 3-4 months at best. KD's on the other hand have lasted over 15+ years on cars I originally installed them on. You can cut the talgo mounting off and body-mount KD boxes easily if you have a little practice. Some cars require gluing some styrene spacers to get the height correct, than drilling a small hole to use a 2-56 screw. When I was on a severe budget, I used plastic packaging similar to the packaging on Atlas turnouts as spacers.
  15. Thoroughbreed

    Thoroughbreed Member

    I've trimmed down horn hooks, filed into knuckle shape, and cut the bottom L shape off so they'd fit into kadess with success.:D
    Just got a model power C of G blimp car, with a new to me coupler type, half body-half truck mount. Had me clueless as to what to do, so I did as above, and it works fine.:thumb:
  16. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    KD does make conversion kits for the horn hooks. I think they are #27, but I could be wrong. I've replaced the HH couplers with the KD's on Tycos, IHC and others with the old couplers. After the first conversion, the rest are cake...But its always that first one.
    As far as the new RTR's and kits that come with EZMates and such....They always get repalced with KD's.
  17. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    The little plastic leaf spring on the knuckle is what holds the knuckle closed. If it looses tension, the knuckle opens up and the train comes uncoupled.
  18. alexander

    alexander Member

    ok, thanks for that.

    i'm pretty sure i saw a metal spring on some.
  19. alexander

    alexander Member

    i found this here http://www.trains.com/mrr/default.aspx?c=a&id=19

    so, does this mean Mark II are better than the original ones?

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