Painting whisker couplers


mopacfirst
 

Does anyone have a neat solution to painting whisker couplers?

For regular Kadees I fold a piece of masking tape over the shank, which effectively keeps paint off the nice slick bearing surfaces and allows me to position the set of taped couplers so as to get minimum paint on maximum surface.

I've found more and more use for whisker couplers, especially in retrofitting ones that didn't spring so well, and I have needed to paint some to go onto pre-painted cars. I'm really reluctant to wrap masking tape over the spring for fear that it'll take the spring with it, and I don't want to paint the things shank and all.

Comments? Remember that in 1960 it was perfectly permissible to paint couplers, especially the top and sides of the head, and it shows in photos. That's why I'm posting here, because others in this group might need to do so also.

Ron Merrick


Tim O'Connor
 

Ron

I throw the couplers into an old Athearn kit box, and airbrush
them 50 at a time with thin dirty rusty overspray. Usually no two
are exactly alike. Once I've installed the couplers I dab on some
Neo-Lube on the springs and trip pins.

Tim O'Connor

At 7/22/2010 08:05 PM Thursday, you wrote:
Does anyone have a neat solution to painting whisker couplers?

For regular Kadees I fold a piece of masking tape over the shank, which effectively keeps paint off the nice slick bearing surfaces and allows me to position the set of taped couplers so as to get minimum paint on maximum surface.

I've found more and more use for whisker couplers, especially in retrofitting ones that didn't spring so well, and I have needed to paint some to go onto pre-painted cars. I'm really reluctant to wrap masking tape over the spring for fear that it'll take the spring with it, and I don't want to paint the things shank and all.

Comments? Remember that in 1960 it was perfectly permissible to paint couplers, especially the top and sides of the head, and it shows in photos. That's why I'm posting here, because others in this group might need to do so also.

Ron Merrick


jerryglow2
 

I don't think I ever masked or tried to protect the shanks when airbrushing them. Any slight overspray can be burnished off. If you want to mask, how about a soda straw or piece of shrink tubing (not shrunk of course) slipped over the shank?

Jerry Glow

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "mopacfirst" <ron.merrick@...> wrote:

Does anyone have a neat solution to painting whisker couplers?

For regular Kadees I fold a piece of masking tape over the shank, which effectively keeps paint off the nice slick bearing surfaces and allows me to position the set of taped couplers so as to get minimum paint on maximum surface.

I've found more and more use for whisker couplers, especially in retrofitting ones that didn't spring so well, and I have needed to paint some to go onto pre-painted cars. I'm really reluctant to wrap masking tape over the spring for fear that it'll take the spring with it, and I don't want to paint the things shank and all.

Comments? Remember that in 1960 it was perfectly permissible to paint couplers, especially the top and sides of the head, and it shows in photos. That's why I'm posting here, because others in this group might need to do so also.

Ron Merrick


Mike Fortney
 

One can paint dozens of Kadee couplers at a time by inserting the ends into the corrugations on a straight edge of a piece of corrugated cardboard. This offers a good friction fit but not enough to harm the whiskers (not a concern with std. 58s). With the cardboard as the built-in handle, this method is too easy.

Mike Fortney

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "mopacfirst" <ron.merrick@...> wrote:

Does anyone have a neat solution to painting whisker couplers?

For regular Kadees I fold a piece of masking tape over the shank, which effectively keeps paint off the nice slick bearing surfaces and allows me to position the set of taped couplers so as to get minimum paint on maximum surface.

I've found more and more use for whisker couplers, especially in retrofitting ones that didn't spring so well, and I have needed to paint some to go onto pre-painted cars. I'm really reluctant to wrap masking tape over the spring for fear that it'll take the spring with it, and I don't want to paint the things shank and all.

Comments? Remember that in 1960 it was perfectly permissible to paint couplers, especially the top and sides of the head, and it shows in photos. That's why I'm posting here, because others in this group might need to do so also.

Ron Merrick


Doc <boomer44@...>
 

Mike,

Brilliant idea. Thanks

Gordon Spalty


One can paint dozens of Kadee couplers at a time by inserting the ends into the corrugations on a straight edge of a piece of corrugated cardboard.


Denny Anspach <danspach@...>
 

KISS. Pick up coupler by the shank in left hand, pick up brush in right hand, dip tip of brush into paint, and apply. Two nanoseconds. No masking is required, and by the time the spray booth would have been otherwise set up, etc. etc., or the worries about bending the whiskers would have been rationalized, the average modeler will have had all of his couplers already painted, and will have moved on to more interesting things (:-).

Now, this does require some skill and judgment to not gum up the works with thick paint, but in this community of pretty dedicated kit builders and operators, I presume that such manual efforts would not be scorned.

Denny

Denny S. Anspach MD
Sacramento


mopacfirst
 

Half the time, I do that. And you're right, I can manage to avoid getting paint stuck in the bearing most of the time, and a little exercising takes care of it if it happens. Most people probably realize it's not the knuckle spring that is critical.

I was thinking of canned spray paint such as Floquil or Scalecoat, which I prefer if it's a normal color that I need. Depends on the number of pairs of couplers, also. One may get hand painted. Four, as I was doing the other night, probably would get sprayed.

It's always interesting to see the diversity of practices here.

Ron Merrick

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Denny Anspach <danspach@...> wrote:

KISS. Pick up coupler by the shank in left hand, pick up brush in
right hand, dip tip of brush into paint, and apply. Two nanoseconds.
No masking is required, and by the time the spray booth would have
been otherwise set up, etc. etc., or the worries about bending the
whiskers would have been rationalized, the average modeler will have
had all of his couplers already painted, and will have moved on to
more interesting things (:-).

Now, this does require some skill and judgment to not gum up the works
with thick paint, but in this community of pretty dedicated kit
builders and operators, I presume that such manual efforts would not
be scorned.

Denny

Denny S. Anspach MD
Sacramento


Schuyler Larrabee
 

If you are using rubber or vinyl gloves while painting (and if not, why
not?) it's really easy to hold each one and airbrush it. The corrugated
cardboard idea is good if you don't stick them in too far, because you do
want to paint a short piece of the shanks behind the head.



Rather than use the dry graphite that Kadee sells, I use a soft Eagle
"Draughting" pencil, an artist's sketching pencil, and simply rub the box,
the clip on cover if I'm actually using the Athearn thing, and the coupler
shank with it, which applies a coating of graphite which isn't going
anywhere. However, since I operate a yard on a regular basis I have to
disagree with Ron Merrick's comment:



Most people probably realize it's not the knuckle spring that is critical.



It's just as critical as the centering spring, and at times more so, if you
actually use the delayed uncoupling trick.



SGL





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Steve Lucas <stevelucas3@...>
 

I've found P-B-L's "Neolube" to be very useful for lubricating coupler shanks and butt ends.

Steve Lucas.

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Schuyler Larrabee" <schuyler.larrabee@...> wrote:

If you are using rubber or vinyl gloves while painting (and if not, why
not?) it's really easy to hold each one and airbrush it. The corrugated
cardboard idea is good if you don't stick them in too far, because you do
want to paint a short piece of the shanks behind the head.



Rather than use the dry graphite that Kadee sells, I use a soft Eagle
"Draughting" pencil, an artist's sketching pencil, and simply rub the box,
the clip on cover if I'm actually using the Athearn thing, and the coupler
shank with it, which applies a coating of graphite which isn't going
anywhere. However, since I operate a yard on a regular basis I have to
disagree with Ron Merrick's comment:



Most people probably realize it's not the knuckle spring that is critical.



It's just as critical as the centering spring, and at times more so, if you
actually use the delayed uncoupling trick.



SGL





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