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Has anyone tried the avant slot controller?...its offered at Pendle and I was wondering if it may be worth looking at.
 

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One first search it seemed the review link is missing on SCI but with some digging it is still there.
 

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i,ve never contemplated or used an adjustable electronic controller. i use economy parma,s the brakings good and the acceleration, its down to how delicately you use your trigger. they must do some thing a lot better considering the price of them. so what am i missing guys, most people swear by them. john
 

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Rich Dumas
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Perhaps you are missing nothing. We run without magnets and we run all sorts of cars, so having a better controller is more important. We actually hold races and of course all of our tracks have electronic timing. If you mostly run by yourself or with friends that might drop by from time to time who will use the controllers that you supply you will save money by sticking with that. For the most part I expect that if you race with a club that places no restrictions on controllers you would want to try everything and use the best controller that you can afford.
 

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hy RichD, fist i dont want to start an arguement, im genuinally interested. with antispin, a knob that turns down the brakes from max, and a knob that controlls how gently the power comes on. does it make the car easier to controll,like all the electronic rider aids on a modern bike. if you,ve got good controll on a normal resister-wiper controller, is it still an aid. i ask because i,ve been looking at the avant controllers on pedles site and it seemed like a good buy for my first foray into electronic controllers. whats the advantage, i run timing and no mags on a 17ft-6ft home track. john
 

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Rich Dumas
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Everyone in my club uses an electronic controller, either a Difalco or a 3rd Eye. One of the club members is a dealer, so we get to try the latest thing. At the end of the day a controller is either going to get you lower lap times or it isn't. I have tried a few controllers with adjustments that didn't seem to do much. Having an almost infinate number of adjustments is not always going to be a good thing, with too many adjustments finding that perfect combination could be like finding a needle in a haystack. I use a Difalco Genesis, it has 30 bands and the entire resistor network can be swapped for one with a different total value or for a custom made on that does not have linear steps. The controller has the heat sink, transistor and two relays mounted at the plug end. Power for the car does not go up to the handle and back. There is a 30 amp blast relay for full speed and a 10 amp relay for full brakes. When the brake control on the handle is used the brake relay is bypassed. The sensitivity control on the handle adjusts the point on the trigger pull where your car will start to get power, that is especially useful if you run on tracks with different voltages. The final control on the handle is the choke or "anti spin" control, it limits the maximum voltage that the car will see, which is useful if you are trying to drive an overpowered car. On my controller that feature is bypassed at full throttle, the controller can be ordered with a switch that disables the blast relay. With that swich on the car would not get full power at full throttle with the choke control turned up.
One drawback to some electronic controllers is that they do not have fine enough control. Most of them use resistors connected to the bands on the wiper pad. Because of the size of the wiper button there is a practical limit to how many bands the controller can have. Resistor controllers have a possible advantage in that respect, each turn of the wire is another band. 3rd Eye controllers have a wire wound resistor in place of the more common wiper pad and Slot.it controllers use a Hall effect sensor.
 

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Hi John
I have a slot.it controller and two Parma controllers

I have found the electronic controller makes cars easier to drive and a lot more predictable. The fact I can adjust brakes, power pick up etc means cars are more controllable
- e.g. I have a Ninco Megane with NSR gear and wheels, it is a fast car and has great brakes - I actually turn the brakes down for this car as it stops on a dime and even skews a bit with full brakes even with my Parma controllers. I can't drive it any where near as fast with the Parmas as I can't get a smooth in and out of the corners and good flow out of the hairpin.

I also find the overall braking is smoother less stop start and that the responsiveness of the cars is better as well.

cheers
David
 

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It's good to see another microcontroller based electronic controller. The Special Offer price is great & reading the manual it has a lot of nice features including Hall Effect Trigger, two stage power curve adjustment and adaptive brakes, which can only easily be done when you have a processor. To keep cost down they have gone for a pushbutton based adjustment approach, wheras I prefer separate knobs with direct and immediate acccess to the adjustment and a physical indication of setting.

Have to say that if I was in the market for a high end controller I could not bring myself to go buy one that still scrapes a slider up and down a piece of wire or a set of pads.


Rich
 

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okay guys, thats good enough for me. i guess i,m going for the avant to get a handle on things and learn the features, before i spring for a top end controller. whats the advice for a top end controller with all the features you mentioned, but remember i,ve got to sell the wife or my left nut for one of these. thanks for all the input. john
 

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Rich Dumas
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It would be better if you could try the controller before you bought it. Besides having all of the desirable features it is important for the controller to feel right in your hand and if you race it is nice to have one that won't fall apart in the middle of a big event or get cooked if you hook it up wrong. My Difalco has a resetable fuse and diodes for protection and if those were not enough the only part likely to fail is the transistor, which is cheap and easy to replace.
 

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Hi, I would suggest if your presently useing either Parma Eco's or Parma Plus controller's that you add on to them basic adjustable brake's/ sensativity control's all item's can be bought from Maplin's including a encloseure for under £20 and would give you an insight how it can give your car's better driveability. phil.
 

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Price at Pendles for such a high spec controller was just too tempting,
So have ordered on to have a play with and see if the feel and usability matches the spec?

Here is the User Guide, worth a read if you are interested? Only rather glaring omission from the spec is any indication of the rated current?

View attachment hammer_m_eng.pdf

Rich
 

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Rich Dumas
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You can add variable brakes to a controller by putting a 25 ohm potentiometer in the brake circuit. With resistor controllers you can lower the effective ohm value by wiring a second resistor in parallel with the original resistor. The second resistor can be a fixed or variable type, but either way it is better to use something with a ceramic core. There is a pitfall to using a parallel resistor, the controller will not be linear. At the start of the trigger pull the controller will act like it had a lower ohm value, at the other end of the trigger pull the controller will feel more like it did without the extra resistor. I tried this trick once, I started with a 45 ohm controller and put a 500 ohm rheostat in parallel. I also had a bypass switch to take the rheostat out of the circuit. With the rheostat adjusted properly the effective resistance at the beginning would be 25 ohms, but the controller did not really feel like a 25 ohm controller. Since adding a fixed parallel resistor is a cheap modification you could add a 50 ohm resistor to get about 24 ohms or a 150 ohm fixed resistor to get about 35 ohms. Give that a try and see how you like it.
 

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What about getting a 45ohm controller to feel more like a 60ohm - is this possible, or would you have to start off with a 60 and make it feel like a 45, or would it just be easier to buy a second 60 ohm controller and make an adjustable brake pot for both?
 

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Or if you want a very good controller at a very good price you could build one of these

I used one of these before I went to the DARK Side with DIGITAL


QUOTE (JCS100 @ 9 Mar 2010, 09:51) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Below is the updated diagrams for the controller used by 6 of the club members


Circuit Diagram


Construction Diagram

Build details and Spec for Club Controller

Controller is an updated Analogue design based on the Chris Frost design from some years ago. Main improvements is the addition of diodes on a rotary switch giving a stepped brake response, a partial drift brake and diodes added before full power stop negating the transistor step to full power.

Specification for the controller as follows

Peak power @10 Amps during acceleration (Transistor Dependant)
Full power rating +20A (based on Parma contacts)
Continuous rating at ½ power through Transistor @5 Amps depending on heat sink for transistor & transistor used
Working Voltage 8-25 volts
Braking adjustable in 0.3V steps (1N5148 diode drop)
Drift brake @2 diodes (1n4006) 1.4V
24 steps + full power on sweep
Start speed sets the initial motor speed from off to manic effectively changing the voltage range the controller will sweep over.
Traction Control, restricts the initial power into the motor making the controller less sensitive

Design suits Parma Turbo/ RED Fox controllers with separate full power & brake pads.

Construction. (Refer to supplied pics for details & orientation of components)

1. PCBA (SCD Wiper Board)
a. Note Wiper PCB is supplied either with or without mounting block, if without, then a suitable block with 7mm hole sized to fit between the Parma chassis lugs needs to be super glued to the non track side of the controller otherwise jump to (f).

b. Best method to position the wiper PCB correctly, is to locate block in controller lugs with Parma bolt, then dry fit the PCB on top to establish fit under wiper.

c. Wiper must sweep across the brake pad to full power pad at the correct height

d. Parma trigger movement stops may need to be adjusted

i. Brake button support can be bent backwards
ii. Full power stop behind trigger can be filed
iii. Wiper will need to be bent slightly to run at the correct pressure & angle across the wiper PCB

e. When satisfied with the position, mark a line on the rear of the PCB, roughen rear of PCB with sandpaper then super glue in position marked

f. Clean track pads at top of PCB with ink rubber

g. Form 1st resistor to hairpin form i.e. bend one leg 180 degrees back pass body, pitch the leads to suit pads.

h. Locate resistor on non track side starting on R/H side one leg goes to pad 1, 2nd leg goes to pad 2, making a connection.

i. Repeat for 21 resistors

j. With Reference to front view of wiper board solder diode from full power pad to adjacent pad diode orientated at shown.

k. From the non track side connect a hairpin formed diode from last diode pad to adjacent pad (note orientation).

l. Should now have a chain of resistors from pad 1 to pad 22, then diode chain from pad 23 to 25.

m. Locate PCB in lugs secure with Parma bolt

n. Solder brake diodes as shown in pic from brake pad PCB in a chain to the brake button on the controller.

o. Solder wire from full power pad to full power button

2. Cable connections Controller
a. Solder 1 core to full power Parma controller pad

b. Solder 2nd core to Parma brake pad

c. Solder 3rd core to last pad of resistor chain

d. Solder 4th core to the wiper

e. Lay cable to chassis of controller as shown and secure with tie wraps or hot melt glue

f. Locate chassis in to controller sides and mark where the cable is to pass out.

g. File/dremel cable access recess in both halves of controller.

3. Controller box bottom fixings
a. Drill suitable cable sized hole in L/H or R/H side of case bottom

b. Take 2 A 3 pin plug & remove top

c. Locate top centrally on bottom of case

d. Drill 2 fixing holes to hold to case avoiding electrical contact between case and plug pins when re-assembled

e. Drill 1 or 3 plug wire holes below position of plug in case

f. Locate multi-block connector inside case drill fixing holes & secure with screws

g. Locate transistor either in bottom or side of case, drill & secure with screw. (Note transistor requires insulating mounting kit such that the metal tab of the transistor does not electrically connect to the case)

4. Controller box top fixings
a. Print off dial sheet on normal paper, tape to front side of case top

b. Drill 3 holes sized to take the 2 resistor pots & switch pot threaded shoulder where marked.

c. Remove paper locate pots in correct position finger tight

5. Controller Case wiring

a. Wire up plug with suitable cable (Flexible mains lead cores 1.5mm etc)

b. Locate plug to case bottom feed wires through to multi-block, trim, strip ends and locate in block (see diagram)

c. Solder diode orientated as shown to Transistor legs

d. Connects wires as per diagram sheet 2 from block to transistor and to front cover pots.

6. Front Cover finishing
a. Print off dial sheet onto photo grade paper, allow fully drying then adding a spray coat of clear lacquer to protect print and give a wipe clean surface.

b. Carefully cut clearance holes for pot shoulders where marked

c. Undo nuts of pots, remove, apply contact glue to top cover then lay sheet in position

d. Replace nuts & tighten

e. Add Knobs!

7. Testing
a. With a multi-meter check that
i. Wiper at the brake position there is less than 1 ohm between neutral pin and earth pin
ii. Live pin to earth pin is showing as no connection (high ohms)
iii. Wiper at full power Live pin to neutral pin is showing as less than 1 ohm
iv. Earth pin to Neutral pin is showing as no connection (high ohms)

b. Place car on track

c. Set Controller brake to 100%

d. Set traction to 0%

e. Set Start speed to 20%

f. Plug controller in to 3 pin socket, Lift back end of car pull trigger slowly
i. Motor should increase in speed
ii. Should reach full power at end of travel
iii. When trigger released motor should stop instantly

g. Common faults
i. Motor does not run until full power button reached
1. Check Transistor & wiper board wiring at end of resistor chain
ii. Controller case gets hot
1. Disconnect immediately!
2. Check for soldering shorts between brake pads & resistor chain
3. Check transistor leg wiring
4. Check for shorts by following wiring diagram ensuring the correct wires are connected to the correct point.
iii. Start Speed/Traction control works in reverse
1. Wiring to pots outer connection is on wrong side, swap over.
iv. No Brakes
1. Check orientation of all diodes on wiper PCB & brake pot, 1 wrongly connected diode will stop the brakes from working.

Apologies for the carp formatting, original notes written in word did not copy over that well.
 

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QUOTE (Michael363672 @ 7 Jun 2012, 15:18) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Or if you want a very good controller at a very good price you could build one of these

Seems like a lot of work when a Parma Plus is £45 & the Avant Slot controller is £55?

Rich
 
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