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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So for realism i'm not keen on seeing 8 strips of copper tape running round the track!
Its bad enough seeing 4 slots....
So I was wondering whether conductive paint had been tried. This is a paint that has metal particles in it allowing conductivity. Normally used in smaller applications I wondered if it would scale and whether it might wear out too soon?
It may be possible to use it alone or to paint OVER the copper tape.
If the right colour was available it could be colour matched to a decent road paint and so no more copper strips....

Andi
 

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Joel LeNoir
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I have wondered this too. Here in the states we have a product called "weld through". I will try and find a link. It is a primer that one uses to prime steel before you weld. It is supposed to keep your weld joints from rusting. Not sure what is all in this product, but I wondered if I might be able to do just what you are asking about.

Interested in seeing what others think about your question.
Here is some:

http://search.eastwood.com/search?w=weld+t...ust%2BSolutions

Joel
 

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Hi Andi
My experience with conductive paint is
1 Its quite a poor conductor compared with solid copper.
2 Its expensive.
If it is painted on top of copper tape, the poor conductivity doesn't matter much and it'll work OK with one coat (which keeps the cost down).

I've not seen anybody actually try it for pick up rails. Whether it might wear out too soon is a good question. So is finding the right colour (the stuff I've used isn't a suitable colour, it wouldn't look any more realistic than copper tape).
 

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Rich Dumas
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Even if the paint was a good enough conductor it would bee too thin to handle much current. Tinned copper braid looks better than copper tape. Nickel plated copper tape is available, but it is more expensive.
 

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Joel, I've used the weld-through priner on a 1:1 restoration. It always seems to stay a bit tacky, so it seems like it would collect dust, and possibly even gum up braids. Now I have seen a graphite dry-lubricant spray that might work (dark gray) but masking would be an odious task. Might be worth a try on a small test piece.

[edit] I was thinking of the graphite over copper tape. If it worked at all, it wouldn't be thick enough to handle the current on it's own as stated earlier.
 

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QUOTE (Datto @ 11 Jun 2011, 14:08) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Joel, I've used the weld-through priner on a 1:1 restoration. It always seems to stay a bit tacky, so it seems like it would collect dust, and possibly even gum up braids. Now I have seen a graphite dry-lubricant spray that might work (dark gray) but masking would be an odious task. Might be worth a try on a small test piece.

[edit] I was thinking of the graphite over copper tape. If it worked at all, it wouldn't be thick enough to handle the current on it's own as stated earlier.
Something else you'd need to test with this dry-lubricant spray is what it does to the grip.
 

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True that. Even if you mask carefully, tires will come in contact with the graphite, won't they?
 

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Let me approach this from the opposite side for just a bit (bearing in mind that there is no way you will anywhere near the conductance you will need from anything other than continuous solid or braided metal). I had the same concerns about shiny copper tape being so unrealistic on my track. Turns out it's not so bad at all. The copper is so incongruous in that setting that the mind easily dismisses it from the rest of the scene. You know what I mean? You can look right at it, and find it easy to overlook and focus on all the slot car aspects of your track instead. (meanwhile, it's not like tinned copper or steel braiding or rails are any more realistic)

Anyway, good luck with your project, whatever you decide!!

John
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Again thanks to everyone who posted on this.

I might try some 'paint' over some tape just to see but I think you're right - its not likely to work....

I think your comment John about perception, the eye and brain and to some extent psychology is extremely fascinating. I studied this in architecture school and you are probably largely right so why bother?

Just 'cos I like to push the boundaries I guess.....

Cheers

Andi
 

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Conductive paint will contain lots of tiny pieces of metal, which will end up getting pulled into the motor as you race over it. And it will kill the tyres. That's why, with magnetic paint, you should paint over it.
 

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As I have said on many other threads I am evaluating various tracks for outdoors, and have a variety of test pieces on trial. I have found that after about a month outside in rain and sun, some of my copper taped pine tracks tarnish black, still blotchy at the moment but I would think that it will cover the whole at some stage. The pine on these trials has been Creosoted, thus it may be a chemical reaction? Having never studied chemistry at anything other than very basic level I am unable to comment further on this. However, to my surprise, this does not yet affect conductivity, especially if given a spray of WD 40 after a few days of not being used. As such it is begining to blend into the very dark grey/black track surface.

Having said that, regarding previous comments on perception, to me the slots and rails of any type only seem to only be really obvious in static photographs. Nevertheless, having only recently been made aware of it I am awaiting developement of this Mag Track Racing with interest.
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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What about using a permanent marker to colour the copper tape? I've heard of others using it. Easy to apply. Doesn't disrupt power flow. Easier than paint to reapply once it wears.

Looking forward to seeing what you have in mind Andi.

Embs
 

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Joel LeNoir
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Yes the sharpie method works. I did a small section on my routed track about one year ago and the ink is still there. I still think the silvered copper tape is the way to go.

Joel
 

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If the issue is seeing the metal strips, could you put them inside the slot and modify the guide blades to make the braids either side of the plastic blade? The slot would probably need to be wider and you'd need to make a custom guide blade for each car on your track, but that's only a few pounds each.

QUOTE (1 32 slotter @ 11 Jun 2011, 07:29) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>OR better yet you can go slotless!!!!!

http://magracing.co.uk/car_track_concept.html
The slotless slot racing is fantastic; I couldn't really see the benefit until I saw the video and the car being driven around in the same lane like a normal slot car. Unfortunately not everyone has space for a permanent routed layout so sectional tracks (I suppose it would be similar to a TCR track?) would be an advantage. Huge respect to the developer though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well the mag racing certainly does LOOK beautiful, BUT.....

Batteries???????? - no way. The 'genius' of slot racing is the complete absence of batteries. Abttery technology would need to come a LONG way for me to get into something so dependent on batteries.

What would have been genius is if they'd made the cars 'solar' with a nice poweful light over the track (patented!!). He, he.

Seriously though that looks lovely but it hasn't really responded well to the fact that:
a) I have 150+ vintage (mainly scaley) cars I want to run from the '60's and '70's.
This is a slot racing forum.
c) The traditional scratch builders (who I hope to eventually attract to my track for events) can't even deal with putting in a digital chip they're so conservative!!!!!! (See recent thread from Graham for his upcoming Mini Montecarlo Rally event). So I can't see them suddenly building cars for this 'new' technology.

Anyway back on 'track'.

I guess i'm just going to have to use copper tape and maybe colour it as people suggest, or maybe not!!

Cheers for now

Andi
 

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Alfie Noakes
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Hi Conti,
I share your desire to avoid shiny copper lines down the middle of the track. If I can do that I might just do a routed track.
Ecos Paints do a nice dark grey conductive paint. It's got tiny bits of nickel in it.
I've done some testing with a 9volt battery and a Carrera Go Mini on a simple circle, with some limited success. My next attempt will be painting it over copper tape.

The paint is here:
ecos radiation sheilding wallpaint

I've also got some Grey magnetic paint, to see how that works. I understand it's got tiny bits of iron in it.
Sorry I can't be more helpful than that.
Cheers,
Richard
 
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