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David Collins
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2,406 Posts
The second version of my permanent track ultimately proved unsatisfactory to me because the plastic track didn't provide a suitable surface for tuning my cars for club racing on routed wood tracks:


The basic layout seemed to work very well in the space I had available. I liked the two levels, and it divides well into four "zones" to give opportunities for scenery. However I didn't like the left-hand "finger" as it was hard to see when two people were racing at the same time, so I amended the layout:


I wanted to approximate the feel of the Rockingham Slot Car Club's 1/32 scale track as much as possible, so I decided to use non-magnetic braid and the same track paint as we use at Rockingham. But I didn't want the track to feel too geometrical, like plastic track sections or by routing with continuous radius curves, so to enable me to take a more freehand approach in some sections I ordered the routing kit from Luf Luffenham:


So, with the basic design committed to, I gritted my teeth and ripped up the old track:


I'm generally hopeless with practical things that need some technical skill, and so I must give credit to those who have given me the confidence to start. SF member richardtheforth, sold me a good router at an excellent price, clubmate John Roche loaned me a second router, which enabled me to rout the gains for the braid without having to keep changing router settings, and I watched club mates and skilled engineers **** Kerr and Mike Thomson routing new sections for the Rockingham scale track.

But even with their support this has taken me an awfully long time...

Firstly I modified the base boards and then bought the mdf, pre-cut from 8x4 to fit the track sections and then roughly drew the layout on the boards so I could better visualise what I wanted to achieve:


Part two of the story soon...
 

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Bob Chapman
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6,935 Posts
Great plan Dave, looking forward to chapter 2.
Bob
 

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John Roche
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4,202 Posts
Hi David, I'd totally forgotten that you have my router, glad it's being put o good use


Cheers

John
 

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David Collins
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2,406 Posts
Hi John, almost finished with it now! I'm about to put down the tape and braid - hopefully I have all the depths right. Otherwise I am in shtook as you will see...

I forgot to say, the base board is 11' 6" x 3' 9", and the track will be 40' long.

What can I say about my routing experience? Rather inexperience, plus lots of mistakes, plus changes of mind (a.k.a. inadequate thought and planning). It all meant that filler and a power sander were a essential tools! But once I understood how to use Luf's router base plate, which needed holes drilling to mount it to my particular router (sorted with a very helpful email exchange with Luf) the process, using Luf's lexan guide strip was all relatively straightforward.

The track layout meant that I had to rout the sections individually and then join them only when everything was complete With most of the routing finished, the track looked like this:


And then a great day not so long ago when I finally nailed it all together:
 

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David Collins
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2,406 Posts
Well, I hope so Matt!

I am aiming for a 1960's road track style, with old Scalex buildings adding a retro feel. When it's finished, I am hoping it will look like a circuit built in a disused quarry, with rock faces made using the "frock" (foam rock) technique - basically bits of foam with the surface roughed up to look like rock walls, spread with grout or similar, then painted.

The brick shed that houses my tracks is pretty primitive, but it is dry. Nevertheless I sealed all the surfaces and edges of the mdf before laying it down. I've painted with the same Sandtex paint that Rockingham used for the scale track, and I've painted the lane colours inside the slots, which I think will be perfectly OK for small home track purposes. To give myself a bit of inspiration, I roughly painted the sections that will be grass when its all finished. For the last pics, I've pulled the buildings from their dusty storage to give a sense of how the track will look when complete:





The tunnel section under the back straight will have lighting, as in the first picture in the first post, and the corner on the top left is banked.

Next phase is taping, braiding and electrics, which I am hoping to complete when I take a few days off in two weeks time...
 

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Premium Member
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412 Posts
Looks like a great track with a nice mix of different radius corners, looks like it would be a good track to race on.
Will be interested to see how you blend in the tunnel as I have a similar tunnel on my layout and I'm not entirely sure how to get it to blend in so it looks good.
 

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Premium Member
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8,227 Posts
Excellent flowing track justDave.
& nice to see a Jouef Dunlop foot bridge on there!
Cheers
Kev
 

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ParrotGod
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8,228 Posts
WOW! I must admit that the routed track looks much better than the plastic one. Nice flow.
 

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David Collins
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2,406 Posts
I took some time off work this week, amongst other things to try to finish the track (or at least get it running). With some final prepping and cleaning of the slots done, it was time to lay the double-sided tape down:



I then pushed on with the braiding - with my back protesting more and more through the day!:



I can't tell you how good it felt to have that over with! I thought that it would take ages, but prepping, taping and braiding of the two 40-foot lanes took 6-7 hours in total.

Now it starts to feel like a proper model car track, and I couldn't help myself, I had to put some buildings and cars on to give a feel of how the finished item is going to look:



I should be able to get the wiring done tomorrow - I have a Professor Motor wiring loom from my previous track, so it should not be too difficult a job. Then there's just the business of installing barriers, and I can get to running cars on it. Landscaping can then be done at a more leisurely pace...

David
 

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Registered
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777 Posts
Hey Dave looking good

I'm now waiting 'til I get a bigger shed before I take the plunge for a new track at home.
Nice size of circuit by the way.

Cheers.
Nik.
 

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Registered
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48 Posts
Very nice! I'm trying to work on a layout for my 11' X 3.5' space, so roughly the same amount of room. Thanks for the inspiration.
 

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David Farrow
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1,237 Posts
A really nice track. when do you think you will have it up and running. Its a lot of work but a wood track is so much nicer to drive on. well done and I hope to see you at the club some time soon.

Df
 

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David Collins
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2,406 Posts
Thanks for the complements guys. I did the electrics yesterday to BSCRA standard, so it works with electronic controllers - though the standard Parmas are fine for this sort of layout. It's not exactly fun to drive yet - still very dusty and there is no grip laid down, but it works!

Here's a video of the first couple of laps:

http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/exOdlmiLk_c?rel=0
 

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David Collins
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2,406 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well, Spring has sprung and the grass has riz and all that, and finally the track is taking shape - it seems like it has taken years but from the thread it looks like just about nine months - just like giving birth and about the same amount of pain I reckon....





The only barrier to racing is the lack of actual barriers!

David
 
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