Sharon Couplers


Robert kirkham
 

I was surfing the Sargent Couplers web page and noticed something new to me: the Sharon Coupler.   <http://www.sergentengineering.com/>   The history and information provided on the web page is interesting, – hopefully this link takes you directly there.  If not, look at RC87a at the end of the products list, where a link to the history is found.   
 
The history lacks the critical bit of information one needs to justify trying them out: what freight cars were using them in the steam era?  (I model 1946) 
 
By the way, I see a Blackstone models compatible version which makes me wonder about converting their tank cars to standard gauge with Tahoe short wheelbase arch bar trucks and  . . . hmmm – any chance an odd ball coupler like this might be appropriate? 
 
Or on some other car?
 
I realize this may lead to “nope, not for me”, but I just haven’t ever noted these couplers in proto photos over the years. 
 
Rob Kirkham


midrly
 

Rob--

I'm going out on a limb here, but I think that any STMFC offered in interchange on North American rails circa 1946 would be condemned on sight if it was fitted with anything other than an AAR Type D, E, or F coupler.   I have not an AAR Field Manual of the Interchange Rules for 1946, and welcome correction.  The AAR Field Manual cited specific prohibitions applying to cars offered in interchange.

I have seen couplers with "SHARON" cast into their head on CN Burro cranes that were built in the late 1950's. Online photos of other roads' Burro cranes show what appear to these couplers used on them as well.

Dennis Storzek mentioned Sharon couplers being used on Soo Line passenger cars--likely the Soo Line was not alone. 

Steve Lucas.  


Jim Betz
 

Rob,

This is interesting stuff and I've definitely seen
some Sharon couplers (in museums and other such
places) but never had a name for them before.

But my primary/first focus is on Ops and not on
how realistic/prototypical a model looks. As an
example of that commitment to how well it works
during Ops ... a loco of mine was having trouble
coupling up to cars just yesterday. The problem
was diagnosed to being that the modeled air
hose was interfering with the action of the couplers.
So I took a pair of dikes and cut off the bottom 3rd
of the air hose (including the glad hand). End of
problem. ("How it looks" was sacrificed for "how
it operates" ... in a heart beat.)

I participated in some experimentation with the
Sergent couplers back when they first came out and
no matter how much we loved the way they looked ...
we could not make them operate reliably enough to
even consider using them on Ops oriented layouts.

The problems were first -considerably- more time
to couple/uncouple cars.
Second, although the increased amount of time to
"fiddle with the couplers" might have been acceptable ...
the associated problems related to using them on any
kind of curve were serious due to the nature of the
track on a typical layout. This didn't just make the them
take longer but it also significantly changed where you
could even consider doing any coupling/uncoupling.
And the third problem was the"spontaneous
uncouplings" when going down the line with a train.
These are caused by/due to the greatly reduced
vertical 'gather' ... and the "facts of life" related to
laying HO scale track ("how 'perfect' can your track
be - realistically). We even took them to the "layout
with the best track in the area" and tried them there.
The result was the same - they just don't have enough
vertical dimension to stay coupled with each other.
Finally - the lack of being able to use them with
other "legacy" couplers (no matter which ones or
which sizes or if they are "semi-scale" or not) ... made
it such that you pretty much have to decide to run
all Sergents ... or none.

Again - I love the look of them but they just aren't
usable on an "operating layout" (to/for me).

And although I'm sure there are some operating
layouts out there that use Sergents ... I have never
encountered one (yet?).
- Jim


Scaler164@...
 

In nothing more than an effort to be fair and give credit where it's due... I believe Jim's assessment (quoted below) is unfair.  Not everyone sees operation as the primary focus... and some are willing to go the extra mile to achieve the best of both worlds (looks and operation). Trying to blame the Sergent coupler's characteristics for "spontaneous uncoupling" at the start/end of a grade is basically blaming the coupler for one's poor trackwork when the track deserves all the blame.  If you measure the height of the face of the nuckle on the Sergent coupler, that measurement is about 1/4 the amount of 'drop' that the opposite end of the model has to experience before the couplers will come uncoupled... and if one's trackwork drops off that steeply, I'd say it's time to fix that trackwork... not blame the couplers.  The factful truth is that Sergent couplers are LESS prone to uncoupling in such situations given their much tighter coupling surfaces... in layman terms  they grip each other much tighter.  They also work (couple and uncouple) just as easily as Kadee's on any given day IF the modeler has taken the necessary time to build and install them correctly.
 
Additionally... I can tell you for sure that I've had (in many years past) the same trouble with Kadee couplers... and I continued to have that trouble until my track construction skill improved.  I had trouble with the first Sergent couplers I built as well... because I had to learn how to do it right.
 
Another point Jim made was the he tested them "back when they first came out"... leading me to believe that he was testing the first-generation Sergent couplers... which were nowhere as easy to assemble, nor did they work as well (without a lot of refinement) as the present generation Sergent coplers.  So, if this is the case, his results are based on an archaic, no-longer-offered version of the Sergent coupler and are therefore outdated and unfairly applied to the far-superior products that Sergent offers today.
 
Lastly... if the lack of a centering feature on Sergent couplers is an issue for you... do like I did... solve the problem.  My solution works just as well in HO as it does in S scale.  See the links below :
 
 
 
It took me about 5 minuted to dream up and build this solution.
 
 
John Degnan
 


From: "Group, POST :"
To: "Group, POST :"
Sent: Sunday, July 27, 2014 11:50:57 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers

But my primary/first focus is on Ops and not on how realistic/prototypical a model looks.  As an example of that commitment to how well it works during Ops ... a loco of mine was having trouble coupling up to cars just yesterday.  The problem was diagnosed to being that the modeled air hose was interfering with the action of the couplers. So I took a pair of dikes and cut off the bottom 3rd of the air hose (including the glad hand).  End of problem.  ("How it looks" was sacrificed for "how it operates" ... in a heart beat.)
 
I participated in some experimentation with the Sergent couplers back when they first came out and no matter how much we loved the way they looked .. we could not make them operate reliably enough to even consider using them on Ops oriented layouts.
 
The problems were first -considerably- more time to couple/uncouple cars.
 
Second, although the increased amount of time to "fiddle with the couplers" might have been acceptable ... the associated problems related to using them on any kind of curve were serious due to the nature of the track on a typical layout.  This didn't just make the them take longer but it also significantly changed where you could even consider doing any coupling/uncoupling.
 
And the third problem was the"spontaneous uncouplings" when going down the line with a train These are caused by/due to the greatly reduced vertical 'gather' ... and the "facts of life" related to laying HO scale track ("how 'perfect' can your track be - realistically).  We even took them to the "layout with the best track in the area" and tried them there. The result was the same - they just don't have enough vertical dimension to stay coupled with each other.
 
Finally - the lack of being able to use them with other "legacy" couplers (no matter which ones or which sizes or if they are "semi-scale" or not) ... made it such that you pretty much have to decide to run all Sergents ... or none.

Again - I love the look of them but they just aren't usable on an "operating layout" (to/for me).

And although I'm sure there are some operating layouts out there that use Sergents ... I have never encountered one (yet?).
- Jim


Tony Thompson
 

John Degnan wrote:

Lastly... if the lack of a centering feature on Sergent couplers is an issue for you... do like I did... solve the problem.  My solution works just as well in HO as it does in S scale.  See the links below :
 
 
 
It took me about 5 minuted to dream up and build this solution.

    Looks very nice, John, and a simple design. Small nit: I believe the coupler does not occupy a "gear box." The coupler attaches to the end of the center sill with a yoke If there is draft gear, which may include springs and/or friction devices to absorb draft and buffing forces, that gear may or may not be housed a closed or partly closed box on the prototype. I have no problem with the model term "draft gear box," as a description of a box into which the coupler resides, but think the term "gear box" by itself is a misnomer.
      I note that Kadee calls them "draft gear boxes," which as a complete term seems fine to me. Some also call them "coupler boxes," which seems okay too.

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705         www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history





Scaler164@...
 

Very true, Tony... "coupler box" or "gear box" is definitely a hobby term.
 
 
John Degnan


From: "Group, POST :"
To: "Group, POST :"
Sent: Sunday, July 27, 2014 5:07:44 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers

Small nit: I believe the coupler does not occupy a "gear box." The coupler attaches to the end of the center sill with a yoke If there is draft gear, which may include springs and/or friction devices to absorb draft and buffing forces, that gear may or may not be housed a closed or partly closed box on the prototype. I have no problem with the model term "draft gear box," as a description of a box into which the coupler resides, but think the term "gear box" by itself is a misnomer.
      I note that Kadee calls them "draft gear boxes," which as a complete term seems fine to me. Some also call them "coupler boxes," which seems okay too.

Tony Thompson


 





Robert kirkham
 

Thanks for the observation regarding the burro cranes Steve.   Yes, I’m thinking if there is any place for odd ball couplers it is probably on MOW / work equipment (or the very old stray).  Canadian lines practice of tolerating arch bar trucks long after they were no longer permitted in interchange makes me wonder abut this equipment too.   Without knowing names of designs previously, might observation of names cast into couplers has been without any real insight.  I had very little appreciation of the claim that many different couplers remained in service long after the type D and E were offered.  That said, I’ve looked at enough museum equipment to have picked up on the fact that not every coupler fits the familiar shape, so this has got me curious.
 
By the way, I’m not taking part in the debate about Sargent couplers as a choice in modelling.    To each his own.   For me, the fascinating bit is the prototype use.
 
Rob Kirkham
 

Sent: Sunday, July 27, 2014 7:15 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers
 


Rob--
 
I'm going out on a limb here, but I think that any STMFC offered in interchange on North American rails circa 1946 would be condemned on sight if it was fitted with anything other than an AAR Type D, E, or F coupler.   I have not an AAR Field Manual of the Interchange Rules for 1946, and welcome correction.  The AAR Field Manual cited specific prohibitions applying to cars offered in interchange.
 
I have seen couplers with "SHARON" cast into their head on CN Burro cranes that were built in the late 1950's. Online photos of other roads' Burro cranes show what appear to these couplers used on them as well.
 
Dennis Storzek mentioned Sharon couplers being used on Soo Line passenger cars--likely the Soo Line was not alone.
 
Steve Lucas. 


Eric Neubauer <eaneubauer@...>
 


A related term is "draft arm" which refers to the center sill beyond the body bolster including the coupler attachment.
 
Eric N.

Very true, Tony... "coupler box" or "gear box" is definitely a hobby term.
 
 
John Degnan


From: "Group, POST :" <STMFC@...>
To: "Group, POST :" <STMFC@...>
Sent: Sunday, July 27, 2014 5:07:44 PM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers

Small nit: I believe the coupler does not occupy a "gear box." The coupler attaches to the end of the center sill with a yoke If there is draft gear, which may include springs and/or friction devices to absorb draft and buffing forces, that gear may or may not be housed a closed or partly closed box on the prototype. I have no problem with the model term "draft gear box," as a description of a box into which the coupler resides, but think the term "gear box" by itself is a misnomer.
      I note that Kadee calls them "draft gear boxes," which as a complete term seems fine to me. Some also call them "coupler boxes," which seems okay too.

Tony Thompson


 





Tony Thompson
 

Steve Lucas wrote:

I'm going out on a limb here, but I think that any STMFC offered in interchange on North American rails circa 1946 would be condemned on sight if it was fitted with anything other than an AAR Type D, E, or F coupler.   


      Okay, but in fact the Type D coupler design was standardized by the MCB in 1899, with some revisions of details in ensuing years; it then became successively the ARA and AAR Type D. The Sharon coupler, offered by National Malleable Steel, was a conforming Type D coupler, just a slightly different design.

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705         www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history





Guy Wilber
 

On Jul 27, 2014, at 8:28 PM, "Tony Thompson tony@signaturepress.com [STMFC]" <STMFC@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


Okay, but in fact the Type D coupler design was standardized by the MCB in 1899, with some revisions of details in ensuing years; it then became successively the ARA and AAR Type D. The Sharon coupler, offered by National Malleable Steel, was a conforming Type D coupler, just a slightly different design.


Guy Wilber
 

Tony Thompson wrote:

Okay, but in fact the Type D coupler design was standardized by the MCB in 1899, with some revisions of details in ensuing years; it then became successively the ARA and AAR Type D. The Sharon coupler, offered by National Malleable Steel, was a conforming Type D coupler, just a slightly different design
The MCBA adopted the automatic coupler in 1887 as standard with further details adopted in 1889 and 1893, and modified in 1909. The coupler was replaced by the Type D in 1918.

The original Type D was adopted as standard in 1916 and was modified in 1918 to the No. 10 contour replacing the former MCBA standard.

All freight cars built new and used in interchange were required to be equipped with Type D couplers cast with 6 inch by 8 inch shanks as of November 1, 1920. Rebuilt cars were to be so equipped on, and after July 1, 1928.

The greater number of early MCBA standard couplers were required to be replaced as of January 1, 1929 due to deficiencies in dimensions and riveted or pinned connections between the coupler and yoke.

The general demise of the early MCBA standard couplers was due to attrition and lack of available replacement parts. The prohibition of cars of all wood construction as of January 1, 1935 would have been another major blow to this coupler design as well.

All new cars built on, and after August 1, 1933 were required to be equipped with Type E couplers. Cars rebuilt on, and after August 1, 1937 were required to be equipped with Type E couplers though exceptions were allowed for cars which would not accommodate larger coupler shanks. Those were still required to be equipped with Type D or E couplers cast with dimensionally smaller shanks.

Type D couplers cast after August 1, 1936 were prohibited, effective January 1, 1937. The AAR required all Type D manufacturers to certify all castings and related equipment was destroyed.

Guy Wilber
Reno, Nevada


Tony Thompson
 

Guy Wilber wrote:

 

The original Type D was adopted as standard in 1916 and was modified in 1918 to the No. 10 contour replacing the former MCBA standard.

All freight cars built new and used in interchange were required to be equipped with Type D couplers cast with 6 inch by 8 inch shanks as of November 1, 1920. Rebuilt cars were to be so equipped on, and after July 1, 1928.

    Thank you for the specifics, Guy. I misunderstood a note in the 1928 Cyc as to the 1899 adoption. But note, Guy's summary does not address the original question about Sharon couplers. They are shown in the 1928 Cyc as still available, along with Type D, from National Malleable Steel (page 933). 
     If there is further information about the later history of the Sharon coupler, maybe Guy can supply it.

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705         www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history





Clark Propst
 

Speaking of ‘terms’ my railroad friend always call the couple a “Drawbar”.
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa


Robert kirkham
 

This is very helpful.

While there are no specific cars identified, I think if I am reading Guy's notes correctly, some questions and observations can be made:
- did the Sharon coupler have sufficient dimensions to escape replacement due to the January 1, 1929 requirement for replacement based on dimensions and riveted or pinned connections between the coupler and yoke?
- if so (and that remains unknown to me), then by 1935 we would only see Sharon couplers on cars of steel frame or steel reinforced frame construction built prior to Nov. 1 1920.

That narrows the pool, especially in the post WWII era.

Other factors are also obvious. I'm not really aware of other competing coupler designs during this era of improvement and standardization, but the various answers I'm reading suggest that Sharon couplers might not be the only alternatives to Type D (and later E) to survive on old equipment. Obviously, lots of freight cars built pre Nov. 1, 1920 could have been equipped with compliant type D couplers. So not every pre-1920 built car is a candidate. Will have to look at car order information in Railway Age to pursue this further.

And of course as built info says nothing about what couplers were replaced as damage and wear took its toll.

Obviously, the use of Sharon couplers post war would have been very slim. Still, I am not reading an outright ban (provided the dimensions and attachments were permitted).

Rob Kirkham

-----Original Message-----
From: Guy Wilber guycwilber@aol.com [STMFC]
Sent: Sunday, July 27, 2014 10:33 PM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers

Tony Thompson wrote:

Okay, but in fact the Type D coupler design was standardized by the MCB in 1899, with some revisions of details in ensuing years; it then became successively the ARA and AAR Type D. The Sharon coupler, offered by National Malleable Steel, was a conforming Type D coupler, just a slightly different design
The MCBA adopted the automatic coupler in 1887 as standard with further details adopted in 1889 and 1893, and modified in 1909. The coupler was replaced by the Type D in 1918.

The original Type D was adopted as standard in 1916 and was modified in 1918 to the No. 10 contour replacing the former MCBA standard.

All freight cars built new and used in interchange were required to be equipped with Type D couplers cast with 6 inch by 8 inch shanks as of November 1, 1920. Rebuilt cars were to be so equipped on, and after July 1, 1928.

The greater number of early MCBA standard couplers were required to be replaced as of January 1, 1929 due to deficiencies in dimensions and riveted or pinned connections between the coupler and yoke.

The general demise of the early MCBA standard couplers was due to attrition and lack of available replacement parts. The prohibition of cars of all wood construction as of January 1, 1935 would have been another major blow to this coupler design as well.

All new cars built on, and after August 1, 1933 were required to be equipped with Type E couplers. Cars rebuilt on, and after August 1, 1937 were required to be equipped with Type E couplers though exceptions were allowed for cars which would not accommodate larger coupler shanks. Those were still required to be equipped with Type D or E couplers cast with dimensionally smaller shanks.

Type D couplers cast after August 1, 1936 were prohibited, effective January 1, 1937. The AAR required all Type D manufacturers to certify all castings and related equipment was destroyed.

Guy Wilber
Reno, Nevada

------------------------------------
Posted by: Guy Wilber <guycwilber@aol.com>
------------------------------------


------------------------------------

Yahoo Groups Links


Eric Neubauer <eaneubauer@...>
 


At least in today's world, that would be confusing. "Drawbar connected" is used to denote individual cars connected with a solid bar rather than couplers. Hence a drawbar is very different from a coupler. I can't think of any pre-1960 examples of this except for a locomotive and tender, but perhaps there were some.

Eric N.

Speaking of ‘terms’ my railroad friend always call the couple a “Drawbar”.
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa


Jeff Coleman
 

I too have head many ex-railroad men refer to couplers as the drawbar or drawhead. I currently work with a ex-Southern switchman that uses drawhead when talking about couplers here in the shop.

As for the discussion about Sharon couplers this info is posted on the San Juan Car Company website. They manufacture O, On3 and On3 rolling stock, trucks, and couplers including Sharon.
The “modern” coupler is really not that modern. The Master Car Builders (MCB) established the contour in the 1890’s as the #5. MCB later became the American Association of Railroads (AAR). Then, as now, their function was to set standards and practices for railroads and the knuckle couple was a major achievement.

This is often referred to as the “Janney” coupler but really, Janney was just one brand name of couplers manufactured to those contours at that time. The knuckle was 9″ and the body was approx. 12″ deep and about that tall.

A bit later the contour was revised as the MCB “D” which still had the 9″ knuckle, but the body contour was slightly beefier. The later “E” has an 11″ knuckle and a correspondingly larger body, BUT ALL the couplers are compatible and able to coupler to each other. In computer terms, they were backwards and forward compatible.

Most narrow gauge cars sported the “D” due to their build date. Common brands included Janney, Simplex, Climax, Tower and Sharon, with Sharon being the most common.

So, we can stop referring to couplers as “standard” gauge couplers or “narrow” gauge couplers. There is no such thing and never was. The slight visual differences in size simply reflects differences in coupler brands and the evolution of the contour as time progressed
- Excerpted from 2010 issue of the On30 Annual.

1. What is the size of the coupler?

Before the turn of the century the AAR standardized automatic coupler designs, and began the process of eliminating the link and pin coupler.

The Sharon Coupler was one of the many designs to come from this design standard. Some of the more commonly found brands were the Tower and Janey.

The interface (knuckle & body) were common , but the mechanisms were all different.

During the conversion from link and pin couplers, the D&RGW made the switch. The most common was the Sharon. Wandering through the yards here in Durango and in Chama you will find all of these types including ones not listed here. You will even find narrow gauge cars with E type couplers.

As trains got longer and cars became heavier, a larger coupler size was needs. The E type was that coupler. Larger than the Sharon type but still interchangeable. The E type is still in use today along with more modern couplers.

Jeff Coleman



-----Original Message-----
From: 'Eric Neubauer' eaneubauer@... [STMFC]
To: STMFC
Sent: Mon, Jul 28, 2014 11:05 am
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers

 

At least in today's world, that would be confusing. "Drawbar connected" is used to denote individual cars connected with a solid bar rather than couplers. Hence a drawbar is very different from a coupler. I can't think of any pre-1960 examples of this except for a locomotive and tender, but perhaps there were some.
Eric N.
Speaking of ‘terms’ my railroad friend always call the couple a “Drawbar”.
Clark Propst
Mason City Iowa


Bruce Smith
 

Eric, 

A few steam era examples of drawbar connected cars other than steam locos and their tenders include early FT A&B units and paired Baldwin Centipedes on the PRR.  There were also some cars that were drawbar connected prior to 1960.  Note that term drawbar really means the part connected to the car, thus the coupler has a drawbar and of course we refer to drawbar horsepower for locos.

Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

https://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/


"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."

                           __

  On Jul 28, 2014, at 10:04 AM, 'Eric Neubauer' eaneubauer@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:


 

At least in today's world, that would be confusing. "Drawbar connected" is used to denote individual cars connected with a solid bar rather than couplers. Hence a drawbar is very different from a coupler. I can't think of any pre-1960 examples of this except for a locomotive and tender, but perhaps there were some.

Eric N.


John Barry
 

Bruce,

Although many roads FT locomotives did, Santa Fe FT's NEVER had drawbars between units and they were among the first adopters as the War Production Board allocated diesel units where most needed.  

I'm not sure it qualifies as a drawbar, but ATSF did use a special zero slack coupling between pairs of Ft-M converted into Ft-16 for piggyback service in 1959.  For all intents and purposes, it was a drawbar that could be split in the middle for shoppings.
 
John Barry


ATSF North Bay Lines
Golden Gates & Fast Freights


707-490-9696


3450 Palmer Drive, Suite 4224
Cameron Park, CA 95682


From: "'Bruce F. Smith' smithbf@... [STMFC]"
To: "STMFC@..."
Sent: Monday, July 28, 2014 9:38 AM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Sharon Couplers

 
Eric, 

A few steam era examples of drawbar connected cars other than steam locos and their tenders include early FT A&B units and paired Baldwin Centipedes on the PRR.  There were also some cars that were drawbar connected prior to 1960.  Note that term drawbar really means the part connected to the car, thus the coupler has a drawbar and of course we refer to drawbar horsepower for locos.

Regards
Bruce

Bruce F. Smith            
Auburn, AL

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
                           __
  On Jul 28, 2014, at 10:04 AM, 'Eric Neubauer' eaneubauer@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:

 

At least in today's world, that would be confusing. "Drawbar connected" is used to denote individual cars connected with a solid bar rather than couplers. Hence a drawbar is very different from a coupler. I can't think of any pre-1960 examples of this except for a locomotive and tender, but perhaps there were some.
Eric N.



Dave Nelson
 

Summary from Guy's post, questions to follow:

Type D adopted as Standard - 1916
Type D required for New cars - 1918
Type D required on rebuilt cars - 1928

Type E required for New cars - 1933
Type E required on rebuilt cars - 1937

For Type D cars post 1937, any idea of the rate of replacement with Type E?
Obviously as a percentage of the total fleet it could not exceed the
percentage of pre 1933 built cars, less post 1937 rebuilds... but would most
older cars equipped with Type D couplers retained them to scrapping?

Does anyone know the "strength" of Type D relative to Type E?

Dave Nelson

-----Original Message-----
From: Guy Wilber
Sent: Sunday, July 27, 2014 10:33 PM
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Sharon Couplers

Tony Thompson wrote:

Okay, but in fact the Type D coupler design was standardized by the MCB
in 1899, with some revisions of details in ensuing years; it then became
successively the ARA and AAR Type D. The Sharon coupler, offered by National
Malleable Steel, was a conforming Type D coupler, just a slightly different
design

The MCBA adopted the automatic coupler in 1887 as standard with further
details adopted in 1889 and 1893, and modified in 1909. The coupler was
replaced by the Type D in 1918.

The original Type D was adopted as standard in 1916 and was modified in 1918
to the No. 10 contour replacing the former MCBA standard.

All freight cars built new and used in interchange were required to be
equipped with Type D couplers cast with 6 inch by 8 inch shanks as of
November 1, 1920. Rebuilt cars were to be so equipped on, and after July
1, 1928.

The greater number of early MCBA standard couplers were required to be
replaced as of January 1, 1929 due to deficiencies in dimensions and riveted
or pinned connections between the coupler and yoke.

The general demise of the early MCBA standard couplers was due to attrition
and lack of available replacement parts. The prohibition of cars of all
wood construction as of January 1, 1935 would have been another major blow
to this coupler design as well.

All new cars built on, and after August 1, 1933 were required to be equipped
with Type E couplers. Cars rebuilt on, and after August 1, 1937 were
required to be equipped with Type E couplers though exceptions were allowed
for cars which would not accommodate larger coupler shanks. Those were still
required to be equipped with Type D or E couplers cast with dimensionally
smaller shanks.

Type D couplers cast after August 1, 1936 were prohibited, effective January
1, 1937. The AAR required all Type D manufacturers to certify all castings
and related equipment was destroyed.

Guy Wilber
Reno, Nevada


Eric Neubauer <eaneubauer@...>
 


True. I figured I better check the 1906 CBD:
 
"... strictly speaking, the term draft gear includes only the springs or friction blocks and other parts enclosed within the coupler yoke."
 
"The word drawbar is used indiscriminantly to designate both the old link and pin drawbar and the modern automatic car coupler."
 
"Continuous draft gear. A draft gear, having a continuous rod or rods extending throughout the length of the car from drawbar at one end to the drawbar at the other end, whose office is to transmit the tractive strains and relieve the draft timbers."
 
The last item became obsolete when cars had steel centersills or underframes. Nevertheless, travelling sill underframes such as Duryea have some similar attributes.
 
Eric N.
 

Eric, 


A few steam era examples of drawbar connected cars other than steam locos and their tenders include early FT A&B units and paired Baldwin Centipedes on the PRR.  There were also some cars that were drawbar connected prior to 1960.  Note that term drawbar really means the part connected to the car, thus the coupler has a drawbar and of course we refer to drawbar horsepower for locos.

Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

https://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/


"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."

                           __

  On Jul 28, 2014, at 10:04 AM, 'Eric Neubauer' eaneubauer@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:


 

At least in today's world, that would be confusing. "Drawbar connected" is used to denote individual cars connected with a solid bar rather than couplers. Hence a drawbar is very different from a coupler. I can't think of any pre-1960 examples of this except for a locomotive and tender, but perhaps there were some.

Eric N.