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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hy, i,m going to route a track.[my ninco has so many lumps and bumps where the grandkids walk all over it]. the space is 16ft by 6ft 2 lane. i only have 2 criteria, it must have a long straight at the back with 2- 5ft6in outside radius bends on each end of the straight. the middle can be filled with anything as long as the lap lengths are roughly equall. could someone point me in the right direction. thanks. john
 

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An odd number of bridges and constant lane centres will give exactly equal lane lengths.
(There's more explanation here on Chris Frost's web site )

If you don't want any bridges the lane lengths can be evened up by widening the lane centres to give the outside lane a short cut.
(There's more explanation here on Chris Frost's web site )

It is worth mentioning that equal lane lengths do not necessarily mean equal lap times, although with 2 lanes the differance in times would normally be small.
 

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Whilst not free form you could layout your basic ideas on Slotman track design software and modify from there. It uses standard commercially available plastic track pieces to design a track and it will give you lane lengths, but if you ask it to equalize usually it puts in a crossover.

It does take a few tries to figure out but if you treat the whole experience as a game? You can put your 6ft x 6ft as a shape and fit track pieces in, it will reverse the corner direction etc., etc.. As you will be routing the gap it calculates between the track ends can be ignored.
 

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QUOTE (Abarth Mike @ 20 Apr 2012, 08:37) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>............ It uses standard commercially available plastic track pieces to design a track and it will give you lane lengths, but if you ask it to equalize usually it puts in a crossover.
The reason it puts in a crossover to equalise is that it is impossible to make the lane lengths the same with constant lane centres and no bridges or cross overs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
boy that was quick, i sort of figured that a bridge would be needed, but i dont want a mirror image track, as ive wired my track with + polarity and reversing switches as well as voltage controll for the kids. it will need very long and shallow inclines and declines, because ive got some very fast metal chassis cars i dont want to launch into the walls. i,ll google trackman and take it from there. thanks for the help guys. john
 
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We used Slotman for our track at Molesey, it can be a bit strange sometimes with zooming out etc, tends to vanish and crash, used it with xp and windows 7, very useful for keeping a record of the bits you need.

 

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Equal lanes do not always work out the same lap times. Sometimes a longer lane may actually be faster.
 

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Rich Dumas
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If you are building a routed track why imitate regular fixed radius plastic track? It has already been pointed out that having equal length lanes does not guarantee equal lap times. Sometimes a car in a tight inside lane will loose momentum. Once the track is completed you can add a diode or two to reduce the voltage in the faster lanes if that turns out to be a problem.
 

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Greg Gaub
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IMHO, trying to make the lanes equal is a waste of time. All the reasons already mentioned should be enough, but also how often will you have two precisely equal cars AND drivers racing against each other? Usually one or the other is just a little better, and will be the winner no matter which lane they are in. If you design a lane to be handicapped, then you'll always put the better driver in that lane, and it will be UNfair. You can tweak voltage per lane, but then you're spending more time tweaking than just racing, and it's still more of a handicapping technique than a fairness one. Besides, it's next to impossible to make any track truly equal between lanes, and so you almost always rotate/trade lanes and run again to determine the real winner.

I say, just make the track design you like, don't worry about equal lanes, and rotate lanes as needed to even things out. At least then, you know it's the best driver winning, and not the best lane. And if you provide the cars, or otherwise leave the car in its own lane, so that drivers also drive both cars, and provide controllers as well, then you know it's not the lane, the car, or the controller, but just the trigger finger of the racers determining the winner.
 

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IMHO It really is a waste of time trying to make the lengths the same.

IMHO What you actually want is four lanes which give equal racing when everything else is equal, and that is a totally different thing.

Try and design a track with three lanes as equal as possible, this will probably involve drawing something which spreads the tight and open corners as much as possible, and then tweaking the real thing over and over again. You will probably find that the hardest part will be trying to ensure one lane is not head and shoulders faster.

After all that you will probably still have one 'lousy' lane, so pump a couple of extra volts to that one.

Above all try and formulate any racing on the track so that everyone gets an equal use of all lanes. Do not include a bridge unless nothing else works....

IMHO
 

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In both HO and 1/32 track and routed stuff, I have always used a cloth taylors tape measure and the stratigic cross over and wide turns.
Then in my case of 2 and 4 lane tracks, all lanes are equal, after track is built, fastest lane is pole lane, and on with how each lane performs.

ncng
 

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If overpasses (bridges) are an option, keep in mind that one or three or five of them will equalize lane lengths geometrically only, not necessarily lap-time-wise. And two or four (or any even number) of overpasses will not equalize lane lengths. Unequal lane lengths don't matter if you run round-robin races where each driver gets equal time in each lane.
 

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I disagree with everyone who thinks equal lane lengths are a waste of time. I have a two-lane routed track, equal lane lengths and fairly equal lap times. Some of the most fun I've had has been times where I have raced with friends side by side around the track.

No need for digital, odd lane spacing or fancy voltage differences. Just fun, equal racing.



Randy
 

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Greg Gaub
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Randy, it's really cool that your layout is so equally matched, and that those you race with are just as good as you, with cars that are equally well setup. Can you share some tips on how to ensure equal lanes like yours, other than a bridge that ensures geometrically equal lane lengths?
 

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If you are set on equal lane lengths and do not want an overpass, use a pair of cross overs and some track design software to fiddle where the crossovers will go to balance the lane length!

Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
crossovers are a no no for me. i like randy,s track, but what i dont like with overpasses is the lack of view of the track. i think i,ll keep it level and play around with lane spacing to give me what i want. john
 

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Stoner's original post didn't mention anything about not having a bridge, and as far as I'm concerned, there's no way to get equal lane lengths without the cross-over. I'm not overly bright so I went for the easiest method. There are moments where you can't see the cars on the track but you get used to it, and there are moments on a real track when you can't see what is ahead so I figured it's a bit prototypical.

You can minimize the blind spot by being a bit smarter than I was. I had originally put the inside corner above the outside thinking it would be easier to marshall and not realizing that a large portion of the outside corner would be blocked. Had I did the bridge with the inside low and the outside high, there would have been very little blocked from view.

I spend a fair bit of time testing and tuning cars, making sure I have pairs that run equally. As for equally-skilled (or non-skilled) drivers, I've found that after some time, most of my "guests" are able to keep up with me because I'm not all that great a driver and the others seem to learn the track quickly, and for the kids, I just turn the power down.

I have recently installed a mirror to deal with the blind spot, haven't had a chance to see how that works yet 'though.

Randy
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
i dont mind a bridge as i said in my second post. to me a crossover is is a flat cross shaped track where cars can smash into each other. john
 
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