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I thought this slot car malarky would be simple when I started a few months ago! Long story short. Bought my kids some scalextric a few months ago - they're bored of it & I'm hooked! Quickly realised with a growing track & multiple cars (mix of newer cars, some with some with out magnets but mostly older stuff without) some better controllers would be good. Bought a pair of DS 35 ohm controllers off the Bay. They were much better. Worked well for some cars but still too sensitive for others. Should I buy further controllers with 55 ohm or 45 ohm or would I need both the more cars I bought - hmmm. In the end I went for a pair of Truspeed BP II thinking that a single pair of controllers with adjustable sensitivity would be the answer & sold the DS 35 ohm whilst I was waiting for them to arrive. Wow, they look & feel beautiful but to my dismay even when the sensitivity is dialed right down they are way too sensitive for the cars & track I have. So the question is what would you do - sell the Truspeed & go for multiple controllers or go down the variable power route & keep the Truspeeds? Currently using a sport power base with 2 adaptors. Seen a Philip Harris power supply with 0 - 12V A/C output that I presume I could plug straight into the power base (using the plug off the Hornby c912 adaptor) on the Bay for £35 (cheaper than buying a load more controllers). Of note my track has to be assembled & dismantled every few days & my 7 & 9 YO also use the track. It's usually 10 - 15 mts & often very twisty rally style. Thanks!
 

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Greg Gaub
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Variable power supply is a much better use of your money than other controllers.

No, you can't plug an AC supply into your base. The wall warts convert AC to DC. You need a DC power supply. You can get a variable voltage and amperage bench power supply for not much more, and it's well worth the extra expense. Note that more amps means higher cost. Two lanes of sport track using typical Scalextric type slot cars? 5 amps is plenty.
 

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David H
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I'm extremely surprised that, even with the sensitivity turned down, you're finding the TruSpeeds too sensitive. I don't dispute that you are, I'm just surprised, so wonder whether everything is right with them.

I've only infrequently used a BP II which was owned by someone else, but use and own four MT1s which have a similar sensitivity range, and they're good for anything. With the sensitivity backed right off and the track running at 13V, even my very young granddaughter can make a fair stab at controlling most cars.

I'd suggest you speak to Steve at TruSpeed. He's very helpful and might point you in a direction you've not considered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·

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Rich Dumas
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Scalextric wallwarts have an AC output, the rectifiers are in the power base. You can connect any DC power supply to the power base, the rectifiers will reduce the voltage somewhat. Electronic controllers are made to work over a limited voltage range, some can operate over a wider range than others. I use a Difalco Genesis controller that takes plug in resistor boards, if I find that I can't dial in the right sensitivity I can change boards.
 

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I swapped from multiple ohm controllers for the BP from Truspeed combined with the new Policar adjustable power supply works really well on my Ninco track . Possibly the Policar supply may work worth the Sport powerbase before you commit to a fully adjustable setup.
 

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Yes Steve is a really helpful guy.

Is your problem that the cars are too fast to drive when the trigger is at or near the full power?
That is a common problem and adjusting the sensitivity isn't the solution. A good solution is an adjustable voltage power as suggested in post #2.

A way of testing if that is your problem is to tape a spacer under the trigger so it cannot be pressed all the way to full power. It costs next to nothing to experiment with different settings with a few pieces of different thickness scrap plastic and some sticky tape.. A word of caution - this does heat up the controller more than normal, so should only be tried for a few laps before stopping to let it cool down. (It might be OK for somewhat longer or even for as long as you like depending on the power of your cars, but I wouldn't advise that without checking the transistors aren't getting too hot)

The jargon used to describe controller functions can be a bit confusing. Sensitivity adjustment generally doesn't make any difference to full power, some controllers have what is often called "choke" adjustments to reduce full power.
 

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Greg Gaub
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Scalextric wallwarts have an AC output, the rectifiers are in the power base.
Given it's the start of my day, this probably won't be the only thing I learn today, but if that's the case, at least I've covered my quota. :)

Thanks for the info! Hopefully it sticks. :)
 

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White Lighting Wood Floor Flooring Gadget Electronic engineering Audio equipment Gas Electrical wiring Am currently knocking a large G & T back in celebration of something going right for once on the start of this slot car journey - I see seem to be crashing from the track with my wallet blazing most of the time! The power supply I picked up for £25 has been plugged in (AC mode) to the power base & it works brilliantly. At 10-12 V the controllers come into their own - with at last being able to actually use the full range of the trigger rather than a gnat's bollocks worth. I thought maybe I'd made a mistake with the Truspeed BP IIs as all the adjustability seems to be coming from the power supply but soon realised, even on a small oval test track, what a great addition the braking adjustability will be. Just have to get used to the hummmmmmm it makes like a mini-substation in the room.
 

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Rich Dumas
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As I mentioned earlier if you connect a DC power supply the rectifiers in the Scalextric Sport power base will drop the voltage somewhat. If I recall correctly the drop is 1.4 volts, so if you have the power supply set at 12 volts the cars will be seeing 10.6 volts. In any case just set the voltage control to where it works best for you.

With respect to controllers with a sensitivity control what that actually does is set the voltage that the cars will see at the beginning of the trigger travel. On Slot.it controllers that is labeled Minimum Speed. If your car wants to go too fast at the beginning of the trigger pull just reduce the sensitivity and if you have to pull the trigger too far before the car starts to move you would need to increase the sensitivity. If your track voltage is too high or the car has a very powerful motor making it difficult to drive the sensitivity control will not be very helpful. Some controllers have a choke or anti-spin control that will decrease the overall voltage. With some controllers the choke is overridden when you pull the trigger all the way. With some controllers that have sensitivity and choke controls those two things will interact, so you would have to fuss around more to find the correct settings.

When my club was still racing cars with traction magnets our tracks were set at 14 volts, if I recall correctly. When we switched to routed tracks the traction magnets were just extra ballast and we had to drop the tracks to 10 volts.
 

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Greg Gaub
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In my years of helping club-mates learn the intricacies of how to tweak their slot.it SCP controllers, I've found that the best way to learn how each knob effects the slot car is to lift the rear wheels off the track. Hold it if you must, or prop it up on a spare tire, but have the car in the slot with the rear wheels up. Then, learn the effect of each knob by itself. If it's the sensitivity knob (or something that effects speed), turn it all the way off/down, and slowly move the trigger while listening to the tone of the motor and axle spinning. Then, turn the knob all the way on/up and do the same. It should be pretty clear what effect that knob is having. With brakes, do the same thing, except you're releasing the trigger suddenly and completely from full power, so that you can hear how long it takes for the motor and wheels to spin down to a stop. It should be clearly heard. Also, do this with a few different cars (preferably different brands and motor configurations).

While that may not be strictly needed when the controller has only the two knobs, it's still enlightening for someone new to those controls. And I dare say, the above method is an absolute necessity for learning how the controls on the SCP and other more complex controllers function. I know guys that bought, and have used for years, controllers they still don't fully understand.
 

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Rich Dumas
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The more adjustments that a controller has the greater the chances are that there is a perfect combination, however you may never find that perfect combination. My experience has been that some people have difficulty dialing in their controller. If you have an old VCR that you were never able to program timer recordings on you might be one of those people.

For their SCP controllers Slot.it as an interactive simulator that may be helpful: http://www.slot.it/INGLESE/slotit_GB.php
 

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Kevs Racing Bits
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Have you got a more specific link to save searching their website?
 

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Steve Hills
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491 Posts
I've just seen this thread so apologies for the late reply.

The BP II sensitivity is easy to reduce still further with the change of just one resistor.

The newer versions have a pot on the main board that allows find adjustment to suit virtually every need.

Earlier versions need to have the resistor in question changed.

If you still have the issue please get in touch and I'll advise from there.

Regards,

Steve
 

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Gerald Lambourn
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1,006 Posts
Don't forget rug racers that if you get ambitious and go to an open meeting the power supply may surprise you. Get in some practice at a bigger club circuit first.
 
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