MRRC Ford GT40 MKIV P-Car, Chapparal 2F and Porsche 910-P
I have been fairly critical in the past of the MRRC Sebring chassis. I had one as fitted to the original release of the Chapparal 2F, and I found the gear mesh to be poor and it was very, very noisy. I also didn't think it handled particularly well so I swapped the whole chassis out for one my own PCB chassis and new running gear.
I was very grateful to receive the offer to review two of the latest MRRC cars, BOAC Chapparal 2F and Porsche 910-P, to see if the revisions undertaken by MRRC to the chassis had improved the problem areas I had identified.
Now I love MRRC bodies, they are superb, scale accurate and I have to say "Fly" quality of paintwork and tampo printing, so let's see how the latest releases measure up :-
The MRRC Chaparral just looks "correct" from every viewpoint, the paintwork is superb and completely run free, and the tampo work is crisp and neatly applied.
The wheels look excellent but I'm not sure about the width of tyres fitted to the car. I feel both front and rear rear tyres should be much wider to be prototypically correct, however having said that they do look fine from the side elevation.
The interior is a modelled a little deeper than the windscreen level of the body which gives a good impression of full cockpit detail, and contains all the details anyone could want.
My only point of contention was the rear wing, mine broke at the top fixing after only a few gentle laps testing. Easily fixed with standard plastic cement but does not bode well for the long term. ( I did replace the wing struts on my earlier Chappy 2 with brass strip set into the wing and bonded to the underneath of the shell).
I think this Porsche is my favourite MRRC car. To some it may appear a little bland in it's presentation livery, but to me it just looks so clean and unspoilt…how I wish modern racing cars could look like this!...
As usual from MRRC, the car is finished beautifully and there are some wonderful touches like the bolt detail around the headlight glazing and the green tinted sun-shielding around the top of the windscreen and doors…
The car uses the same basic wheels and tyres as the Chapparal, but with different inserts, and again I think they are a little on the narrow side, but I stand to be corrected on this issue by any Porsche experts out there…
The MRRC Sebring chassis
Both cars use the same chassis, but take advantage of it's adjustability to suit their differing wheelbases.
This is easily adjusted by means of undoing the the four nuts and bolts and sliding the front section of the chassis making it a doddle to swap the chassis between cars (subject to correct bodymounts) if you need to.
For magnet lovers there are two powerful rectangular magnets fitted immediately in front of and behind the slimline motor. Although I don't have a "Magnet Marshall" to measure the magnetic down force being generated I can say it is enough to allow the car to hang upside down from a piece of Scalextric Sport track!...
The front axle is one piece and sits loosely in chassis cut-outs. There is no restraint to upwards movement of the axle. The wheels are plastic and a tight push fit onto the knurled axle ends.
The guide is MRRC's own and is a push fit into the mounting hole, where it rotates smoothly. There is very little slop in this fitting. The guide is designed, (I'm guessing) to run on Scalextric Sport track, and therefore the guide blade is a little shallow.
Now we come to the area where this chassis differs from most other Ready to Run cars and that is the rear axle/motor/crown wheel setup. The chassis uses "Hypoid" gears which basically allows the motor to be set lower than the centre line of the crown wheel and still maintain a mesh….Well that's the theory anyway. This setup didn't work particularly well on the first generation of this chassis, the gear mesh being very rough and noisy. I'm pleased to say MRRC's redesign of the plastic pinion has eliminated any roughness in the drive train and it is now silky smooth….as for noise reduction that will have to wait until the track tests.
The rear axle sits in plastic bearings which are unfortunately oversize, (to allow the fitment of axles with "knurled" ends"), this does mean there is some slop in the axle location. I'm afraid this is made worse by the fact that the bearings themselves are a loose fit in the axle "shoulders".
The wheels are a good tight fit on the axles and should not come loose during running, what's more they are round and I could find no excess mouldings that required removal. The tyres are a great fit on the wheel, and look excellent with their tread patterns and yellow lettering….The rubber is fairly soft and looks promising for running on most track surfaces.
How do they go?
Lets get things straight I don't race/run magnet cars so I know very little about them, however I am absolutely sure that anyone buying any of these two cars would be delighted with them. The FF Can motor is very quick and the strong magnets would really hold the care to the track. Plus the negative points I mentioned in the review would be negated by the magnet... I'm sure if you try one you won't be disappointed.
For Non-magnet users, any RTR car is going to be severely challenged as we are really asking the car to perform in a way that is was, in most cases, not designed to. Both cars performed on my wooden track in a very similar way, so for the purpose of this review I will only test the Chapparal 2F.
Out of the box I was impressed with the car, the tyres seemed to grip reasonably well and the car was fairly smooth and cornered well. I have to say that although the car is quieter than my previous 2F I still think it noisier than the average Scalextric, SCX or Ninco. The new pinion obviously helps but there is still room for improvement. (Perhaps I should tell you that I'm pretty obsessive about noise from slotcars and go out of my way to make them as smooth and quiet as possible).
I ran the car for hundreds of trouble free laps and (apart from the rear wing!) towards the end of the session is was smoother and a little quieter, so perhaps after a longer acquaintance the car will become much more acceptable. The car was able to achieve a lap time of 5.1 seconds on my twisty track which is reasonable for a car that has not been modified in any way.
Simple improvements I would make to the car would be :-
The chassis is a little light in this form and weight beneath the front axle would help, also the front axle needs retaining in a brass tube or bearings to improve cornering. I would probably fit a deeper guide as well. The rear bearings need gluing to their shoulders and I would add superglue to the inside of the bearings to prevent slop. Finally I would change the rear tyres to Ortman's /NSR or similar. With these changes I consider a lap time of 4.1 seconds to be easily achievable.
OK how would I mark these cars :-
Bodyshell :- 10/10 - I think it would be hard to better the finish of these cars.
Chassis :- Magnet Car 10/10, Non-Magnet 8/10 - The chassis is very adaptable and of great use to the scratch builder. I'm not convinced the hypoid gearing is necessary, as I have used standard pinions and crowns in an offset manner with no adverse problems.
Overall :- 9/10 – Great cars.
Ford GT40 MKIV P-Car
MRRC are distributed in the UK by Pendle Slot Racing
|Lo-Fi Version||Time is now: 18th June 2013 - 21:01|