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Over the past few months, I have acquired 6 x Start F1 cars for the purpose of offering another category of digital racing when my friends come over for a session. I chipped the cars, glued and trued the rear tyres, and redecorated in the obligatory 6 colours.



After doing all that, to my dismay, the performance of the cars was quite different relative to each other - thus rendering the whole exercise a waste of time! Who wants to hand their friend a dud car knowing they'll have a miserable time trailing around at the back of the field?

So, how do you get parity, given 6 cars?

My answer, in this case, was to "scare-up" all the Mabuchi 18k motors I could find, and all the Scalextric thin rectangular magnets I could find. Counting the motors and magnets in the 6 cars, I now had 14 motors and 17 magnets.

Using the APB as a dynamometer:
I compared the 14 motors by placing each one, in turn, into the same chassis, running 5 laps in pace car mode (55% power) in the same lane timed by the APB in race mode. The times were: (6 chosen ones underlined)
19.6, 20.8, 21.1, 20.5, 20.4, 20.6, 20.4, 20.2, 23.7, 20.6, 21.2, 22.1, 21.3, 22.2
(Notice that I had to leave out the best one!)

The upside-down magnetometer:
I compared the 17 magnets by placing each one, in turn, into a Start F1 chassis. I placed the chassis on a piece of half-straight track, and then turned the track upside down while holding the front tyres on the track with my fingers. I then added weights (steel washers) until the magnet lost its grip on the metal rails. The weights were (in grams): (6 chosen ones underlined)
32, 16, 12, 8, 36, 36, 48, 48, 44, 36, 44, 40, 36, 48, 44, 32, 36



I now assembled the 6 cars. To my delight and relief, the cars were now quite close in performance. I tried a few quick laps with each car: best times ranged from 3.641s to 3.779s, a difference of 0.138s. I am happy with that. I now feel confident about handing whoever whichever car on race day.

Now I must do something about improving the parity of my set of V8 Supercars…

Any other stories out there about how to get parity?

Peter
 

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hi
i have not read any more topics on this matter but your efforts and methods should be applauded,just calibrate the throttles with the apb and you will have a very fair race set up.

The racing driver excuses will laughable with the above setup.
 

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I think you found the best method ! I have the same problems, what we do is 6 races, every racer driver every car one time and add the results.
I think the mist difference is in the magnets, I am really working towards magless racing to keep things even, except for F1.
 

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Or, why not organise at least 6 heats so each driver gets to drive each car therefore they all cancel out each other.
 

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Awesome work on the cars Peter!
Where did you get the nice decals?
 

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QUOTE (racerunner @ 28 Dec 2011, 12:55) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Thanks for the comments.

MartinT, for the decals I use ink jet water slide decal paper, and get the logos off Google Images.

Great thanks!

Do you regularly encounter any problems of them not counting a lap or missing a lanechange? I do...
 

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QUOTE (MartinT @ 28 Dec 2011, 14:13) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Great thanks! Do you regularly encounter any problems of them not counting a lap or missing a lanechange? I do...
Are you talking about SSD setup and using latest 6 car PB (C7042)? If so, have you upgraded the firmware on it as 'out of the box' version does have issues with 'missing laps' which has been resolved in the updated firmware version.
 

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Very well done and very clever! No need for fancy dynometers or magnet marshals. Like you said, anyone can do this!
As long as each car is relatively equal, the digital nature will result in the better drivers winning, so no need to go through more precise measures than those. One could point out that the different wheels and tires on each car might result in higher magnetic attraction for some cars than others, but it's unlikely that stock cars will differ enough for the digital aspect not to even things out.
 

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QUOTE (zarko @ 28 Dec 2011, 15:23) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Are you talking about SSD setup and using latest 6 car PB (C7042)? If so, have you upgraded the firmware on it as 'out of the box' version does have issues with 'missing laps' which has been resolved in the updated firmware version.

No I am using the old powerbasePro+SH+A (C7030)...
 

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I have a fairly regular group of 7-10 drivers that show up at my track . We use a different method of handicapping that actually works very nicely. It's based mostly on adjusting the fuel settings. Also assuming that SSDC is used for race control.

I first try to get the cars running in the same ball park by using weaker magnets in the quicker cars. I don't have much problem getting them within .5 sec.

I then come up with an average lap time for each car. The fuel burn settings are then adjusted for each car so that (counting pit time) they all run 50 laps at (theoretically) the same time. I setup the fuel refill rate so that a full tank takes 15 seconds of pit time. So let's say that car A is the quickest car. I adjust fuel burn so that it will run 13 laps before requiring a full 15 sec stop for a total of 3 almost full length stops in order to run 50 laps. Car B is .2 sec slower... after 50 laps that adds up to 10 seconds. So this car will be setup to run 16 laps on a full load. This car should make it's 3rd stop around lap 46 requiring about a 5 second stop in order to finish. The quicker pit stop should negate any speed advantage of car A.

Obviously you'd still like to have the cars running close to each other on the track but you could use this method to iron out any small differences that still exist.
 

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QUOTE (racerunner @ 28 Dec 2011, 15:33) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Any other stories out there about how to get parity?

Peter

Not sure if ssdc has learner mode in 1% increments but I'd be using software if possible to equal everything out.
 

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I've never had luck with using the max power settings (per car) for car matching purposes. In most cases ( on my tarck anyways ) one car is quicker due to handling through the corners. When I start capping power to equal lap times, the good handling cars get the life sucked out of them to where you can run it close to flat out. No fun
 
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