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Brushless Slot cars

21939 Views 199 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  Dr_C
Hi All,

I have been looking into other hobbies recently as I saw an RC plane and thought I'd better give that a go too! Anyhow, these days all the electric motors in RC planes seem to be brushless. Is that something that we'll see with Slot Cars in the future? Are there any already?

Obviously they are more efficient and probably more reliable and have less wear, surely that'd be a good thing?

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Not if you halved the size of the motor.
We have non brushless motors doing 165 in 1.5 seconds. Im not sure we need brushless.
Ade, Ive already held events where motors are evened out using the controller. Then there is the added cost. And are there even any on the market?
More cars and less voltage drop. If the track is set up properly in the first place this wont make any difference.
Im all for new technology but im just balancing the topic here. Cleaner power is a good point but even that can be addressed using normal motors.
Will i be able to corner faster? No.
If i want deadly speed using normal motors i can always turn the voltage up too. I really dont need more speed. Truly. I can achieve traction control also not using a brushless motor........So im not convinced just yet 😊

Hi Dr C.
Ill need a 3D printed cradle over the new motor to fit into existing motor pods. Or a new pod or perhaps a new chassis. Anything is possible.
Am i going to upgrade 100 plus cars?
Just playing devils advocate to open the discussion right up.

Im a big fan of brushless in fact I just renewed and expanded my entire Makita battery tools to brushless.
Like any new concept getting everyone on board without upsetting the apple cart is the problem, the transition period, example a club scenario.
From a manufacturers view getting your cars banned at clubs and comps because they are too fast.
Looking forward to the firmware results I must say looks promising.
Lets ask Tesla can they do a slot motor😊
Im guessing in 15-20 years brushless will be standard in all forms of motors as prices drop and technology improves.
Im interested in the maintenance free aspect, and the fact the motor will put out less electrical noise. Seeing we can send a slot car around a 165 track in 1.3 seconds i cant see speeds improving on a typical 1:32 track though. And then the fact you need a custom made car chip is an issue. On previous tracks ive owned i found i would replace 22k motors with 17k motors and achieved faster lap times. Why? More control.

Not sure how you will achieve more control over a 256 step controller but as you say we will see.
Seperate board? Good idea.
All Makita power tools are going brushless, I can see a day when most slot car motors will be brushless but the slot industry is slow to pick up on new tech so maybe a long time yet

Wouldnt make any difference for control even it was 2048. Its only as good as the human brain to finger intraction.
Already on 256 I can see my nerves flickering on the diagnostic program when holding trigger in one position its that sensitive.

I get it. Sounds complex to set up but very cool Dr C.
Your last sentence came to mind just as i read it.
Only one way to find out😊
You can also monitor back EMF on DC motors to measure RPM.
Yeah nothing to do with this project however.
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Not really interesting for digital. Crazy fast is not at all helpful without a crazy BIG track where an R4 is considered a hairpin turn. You don't get that much in digital. Even the oXigen Le Mans race wouldn't be suitable because, although the track is the size of a gymnasium, the turns are still normal track radii. If you're just going to slow them down to make them manageable, what's the point of having them in the first place?
I said "track without rails", not "track without slot", so we DO talk about the same hobby.
Some time ago I ask to my friend (RC car driver) how difficult was ran a RC car on a slot track:

Technically, not that much. And we can achieve the same result with chip like Oxigen.

The advangage of brushless motor (just to remain in topic) is the efficency; it's a MUST if we run with battery.
The real question is: why we need something like this?
Only to avoid to take the power from the rails
Maybe for kids slot tracks?
Maybe for mount/dismount tracks where the elettrical connection is a pain everytime?

And.. for digital tracks.. does it worth?
Pros: the chips are constantly feeded also during a lane change.
Cons: We still need to feed che lane changers..

Sorry for my poor english ;)
No room for batteries, more expense, have to recharge, need to be replaced and extra weight.
Maybe in 20 years time if batteries increase efficiency by a factor of ten.

You don't need batteries, the track carries the power to the car, the ESC distributes it in the car to the receiver and motor.
Everyone knows that but look at the quote 😊
Double post
Youd think in 2020 the software would prevent double posting huh?
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Dr_C, thanks for the spec above - this is a reasonably powerful motor (as previously discussed). The motor I used (as mentioned in my brushless built thread) is 1230 size (12mm dia, 30mm length, 1.5mm shaft) and probably still too powerful, I would probably go a notch down and suggest 1225 being more appropriate size. The big issue here is reliability though as the 12mm motors are of relatively inexpensive origin and the reliability record is somewhat compromised.

As I have mentioned in my built thread, if I was a bit more skilful electronics wise and had it my way, I would develop a brushless motor with integrated driver (but not speed controller) that can serve as a direct replacement for a brushed motor, but after talking to the electronics gurus at my work place, who said this is not an easy task and of no interest to the wider industry, I am not sure it will happen.

Rick - the above leads me to answer your doubts as to why do it I was sitting on the same side of the fence - who needs so much power, even if it is efficient one, when the brushed motors provide all the power you need and you have infinite energy supply, but after completing my brushless car built and then following this up with directly comparable brushed one, the true benefits (at least from my point of view) became apparent the brushless motors are a lot more compact for the same power level and this allowed me to design in more realistic floor aero tunnels and realistic features are important for me, which I appreciate they might not be for everyone. I can say though my mind have been changed.

For me memories of Scaley using the FF motor made the car silly fast, unrealistic and no advantage in digital.
The FF is proof you can get lots of power in a small brushed motor, I dare say they could half the size of an FF yet again to be enough for a slot car.

Considering brushless motors have been around since 1965 its not going to happen.

Ask 20 or more slot car manufacturers why. They might be able to tell you.

And for my Makita tools none of my brushless stuff is any better than non brushless but $100 per unit more.
As for reliability I have a Makita 9 inch circular saw my dad bought in 1976 or 44 years of use and its still as powerful as the day it was bought. And yes its the original brushes.
Yup the RC tracks are 20 times the size with corner radii multiple times bigger so brushless is a no brainer.

The brushless is definitely better in terms consistency however a digital chipped non brushless car with a tacho and back EMF detection could most likely fix this😊

Actually this has just given me an idea😊

I reckon they would be a lot quieter but I can’t see me buying a 100 motor pods and motors for my collection.
Never thought I'd see you take a cue from the anti-digital people.
Just like switching to digital from analog, or from one digital system to another, doesn't require a complete and immediate conversion of an entire collection, neither would this. Heck, this would be even LESS necessary than changing out 100 in-car decoders.
Lol nice try.
Nah because thats only ONE reason I dont need brushless,
Probably 5 reasons I wouldnt change as Ive mentioned already if you scroll back.
By the time you purchase a car, throw away the pod and motor and replace with new pod and motor Ive just replaced 50% of the car., then add my time ......then hope everyone else in my group will do the same. Cant see it happening in the next decade.
We already have cars doing 165 feet in 1.2 seconds.

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