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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Eldest son has a Start set, which he has expanded a little with the conversion pack and some more Start track. Unfortunately, one of the controllers isn't working properly.

I've taken it to pieces as best as I can, and it does seem like there is proper contact between the coil and the solid copper part. But for whatever reason it doesn't seem to be passing any current.

The prices for new Start controllers seem ridiculous given that they appear to be the lowest of the low tech controllers. So I was wondering how practical it would be to convert a "normal" controller to work with the Start set? Or advice as to how to repair the existing controller to get the contacts working properly.

Any advice gratefully received!

Matt
 

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Hi Matt
REPAIR
If you have a multimeter, check out that the parts that appear to be connected are actually electrically connected.
Most likely it has a wire not making contact or broken (easy to fix by soldering the wires to the correct place), or the wiper isn't pressing on the resistance wire properly (easy to fix by bending it till it makes proper contact).

REPLACEMENT
Yes there are plenty of better replacements if you want to make the investment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the quick reply. Presumably if I buy an alternative, all I have to do is trim back some wires and re-connect? What would be a good cheap alternative?

In terms of testing the existing, I've taken the side of the existing handset and done the bending etc. Problem is that the wiper moves through an arc, but the resistance wire is horizontal. So bending the wiper to make contact in one place is fine, but it then doesn't solve the issue across the whole of the wire.

The other connections are sound, it just feels as if some part of the wiper / resistance arm need cleaning to make a good contact - yet I've done that, and it still doesn't work reliably.

Matt
 

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I haven't done it but I would suggest that you just cut the wire and wire in a new Scalextric one (not digital)

Does anyone know if the start are 3 wires with a brake or two wires without?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
From the investigations I did, it appeared to be two wires from the Start controller - internally just one connected to the wiper, and one connected to the resistive coil.

Matt
 

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I think these 'Start' controllers are 'dodgy'.

One of mine went after just a few weeks, I went back to Argos and they could only replace the WHOLE set as they couldn't replace the part only.
Very nice of them.
But within a short time one of the controllers again stopped working properly then the other one just stopped completely .


During this time I was adding to my track by using the 'Start Converter' C8525 and was able to include the item - 'SPORT START,CONTROLLERS & POWER PACK' - which I picked up for a song on eBay. (there's lot's of them on there)

I now use those controllers to run my cars, that was 18 months ago and I've never had any problems with those ones.

As you say the 'Start' controllers are very expensive, and I don't know why, especially for such a poor product.

If you intend to extend your track, then I'd suggest this is an option worth considering.


Regards,
Billy
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for that tip - I've tracked down a set on ebay; we already had the converter section plus some compatible track parts, so should just be able to slot in this new power source and the controllers.

Cheers!

Matt
 

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I know this is an old post but I have had a problem with my Start controllers working intermittently or not at all. As this is the first hit when searching Google I thought I should post my fix here to help any others.

In both controllers the thin wires attached to the wiper broke internally where they meet the ring terminal that fixes them to the trigger. Because the wire is broken internally it isn't obvious to look at, but give it the slightest tug and off it comes. Some solder to reattach and some shrink tubing to relieve some of the strain has fixed my pair with no further issues.

I even added a brake wire by wrapping copper tape around the trigger stop tab and soldering a third wire. Some hot glue to keep the wires out of the way of the trigger and a utility knife to open up the hole in the bottom of the controller to make room for the third wire is all it takes. The Start track needs a brake circuit to be added too, directions for which are all over the web.

The trigger stop that limits full power make these great for the kids, and the addition of brakes makes them more fun for the grownups.
 

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brakes? how does that work?
 

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When you apply a current to a motor it turns. When you turn a motor it generates a current. When you are on the throttle you are causing the motor to turn and move the car. When you come off the power the car coasts. What the brake circuit does is takes the motor's generated power when it is coasting and uses it to try to turn the motor the other way. This is achieved by shorting the motor so it is effectively trying to push against itself. This slows the car down more quickly than coasting.

A standard short will apply maximum braking power (how much depends on the motor spec). Some controllers have variable resistors in the brake circuit so you can reduce the strength of the braking effect to make the car easier to control.
 

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fabulous explanation mr modifier thanks. can this be done to standard a scaley sport set-up?
 

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No reason why not.

I haven't done it on standard Sport - my routed analogue rally track is wired for brakes using a Parma controller.

There are plenty of diagrams on the web on how to wire for brakes. There is a recent thread you may want to take a look here. Post #7 on this thread has a useful link. I am sure it can be adapted for a standard Sport setup although the cheap Parma controllers are much nicer to use than the Scaley Sport throttles.
 

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mmmm....interesting....but does it enhance the "driving" experience that much? (sorry for steering thread off for a wander)
 

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For me it means I can drive faster. No brakes and you have to start slowing down halfway up the main straight. With brakes its one straight from the end...
 
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