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This thread comes from my issues with my previous scenic tracks and also other people's tracks
when videos of cars are shown. The cars just do not seem to go realistically
(I am here just refering to perceived speed and acceleration).

Unfortunately, this is now bothering me. I am looking for solutions.

There are two elements:

1) The cars. They go just too fast with ridiculous acceleration. Lowering
voltage might resolve speed (not so much perceived speed, see below), but then
this might just make the driving experience boring.

2) The track and scenery. This part is more connected to this section. Our tracks,
even if very big, represent in 1-1 scale very small spaces. Say a 5m x 1.5m track
(which is big) will be a 160m x 48m which would be ridiculous small for many 1-1 purposes.

I have noticed that many times the more detailed the scenery is the worse is the
perceived speed. This is because we want to make the track look like a bigger as a 1-1
space. We do this by putting too much track in a small space, the trees are at not to scale and
definitely the buildings are not to scale. This makes the perceived speed look
ridiculous, even though the track as a diorama looks better.

Solutions?

I am looking for them.

Some themes are better than others. I guess a Nascar circuit would
be fine in 5mx1.5m space, but a "realistic" rally stage not really (unfortunately,
no pull for the former and can't live without the latter).

There are some scenery elements whose scale is difficult to determine, they might help the
perceived speed. For example a rally track with just
very mild elevations and bushes (no steep elevation, no trees) and road with not
too many twists and turns would probably be better for perceived speed.

Any ideas and thoughts about this?

Any examples of tracks you feel are good for the sense of perceived speed?

Have I lost my marbles?
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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Solution on the side of acceleration may be a simple as making the car heavier. That way overcoming the cars inertia would take longer and acceleration would be slower. This would also have an impact on top speed and braking, but they can be taken as 'out of scale' too.

The scenic problem is a little harder to tackle and may take some thinking.
 

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While a 160m 1:1 track may seem unrealistic at best, i dont think track owners and racers alike are really bothered about scale too much.

I think the main questions should be:

1. Does it fit in the space alloted
2. Can i make it look pretty (scenery)
3. Does it look real (or not in some cases)
4. Can i race

I think once you tick yes on all those questions, people are willing to compromise on wether it is realistically scaled down from 1:1. I mean, imagine doing an ACTUAL 1:32 size of Suzuka.

Just my 0.02.
 

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Ember,

I totally agree with the weight solution. When I get back (in 7 months) I will try that on some cars to see how it will go as a general solution.
I have a FLY Alfa Romeo GTAM on which I put a massive amount of lead and always considered it to be one of the most fun driving car in my collection.
It was fun to see the car struggle with acceleration and have to estimate when to hit the brakes.

It would be interesting to figure out other solutions with the cars but can not imagine, maybe with a programmable controller one could do somethings...

Funksty,

I understand that a truly realistic track and driving experience is unachievable. The idea is to get a better illusion of reality. On this section the focus is on
realism of the track and many times this impairs the perceived driving realism. I want to try to combine both realisms, or at least minimize their contradictions.

I have to say that I never had issues with the driving realism when my tracks were less realistic, but now I can not go back anymore... I need a realist scenery.
 

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" Have I lost my marbles? "

Yep...

Hi rallyP

My psychiatrist told me chewing 2x4's just isn't 'normal' & that I needed a good dentist.

My dentist told me chewing 2x4's just isn't 'normal' & that I needed a good psychiatrist.

Mmmm...

Ever thought about taking up 'model railways' ?

Seriously though, some of the railway types, build their tracks in the garden.
Still got probs. though as the 'real trees' don't look realistic.
Do have more space though.
Never seen a garden based slot track like they do though.

The club-member types don't seem bothered at all by what you've observed.
If they could fit a 2000K motor in a Mosler, THEY WOULD !

Know what you mean though.
Anyone thought about fitting a decent gear-box to a slot-car & going 5-speed with clutch & accelerator.
I'm sure it would work fine.
Just have to get yer head round NOT doing a lap time on a 100ft track of 1.052 seconds !!!

It's all an illusion anyhow.
1:1 as well.
My plastic people haven't got 'real lives' or 'flesh & blood' but their still great fun.

Perhaps it's all about fun at the end of the day.
If it's FUN do it, end of philosophy.

Cheers

Si.

P.S. rallyP, don't tell anyone on the forum, but I defected from 'trains' !!!

They're funny about 'trains' here so I'm told...
 

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Si,

Don't tell me I have to go to trains... I couldn't take it.

The point is that I want more realism without getting boring (no offense to trains intended). I know it is possible
to some degree I just need to find how.

In part it is the scale. I think it would be better with 1/43.
With Rc cars I had the option between 1/43 dnanos Kyosho or 1/32 HPI and it was a no brainer. A track that looked
good for the 1/43 was just too small for the 1/32 car. I went with the dnanos.
 

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Greg Gaub
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Similar to the idea of weight to slow the car down, a friend of mine in my digital club has set up 6 rally cars. He has added a little weight, yes, but the main change was that he has greatly reduced traction. Initially, he had used the super-glue trick that most people reserve only for front wheels. He used this trick also on the rear (drive) wheels. He did have a couple 4WD cars, but they perform as slots better with only 2 drive wheels. Anyway, the super glue worked well, but wore unevenly, and so some cars would have more traction than others depending on "tire" wear. His next solution is heat-shrink tube around the tire. This provides a thick, durable, and very low traction tire for the car. We have yet to race these cars since that change, but I look forward to it.

The point is, with almost no traction in the back, but a little bit of weight, the cars DID get going. They just took a lot longer to get up speed, and also needed more room to stop. While this might not achieve the accurate realism you're after, it at least slows things down, even for rally cars which aren't normally speed demons in the first place.

Here's a video of a rally car race at my house. (we used track calls because we were only 6, and everyone wanted to race.

 

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Yea, Somehow 4 track train races just dose not seem fun. I am also a train defector. When doing the scenery on my track, Me and the Wife really don't try to make it fit 1/32nd scale. We just go with what looks right to us, must work as most on this board really like it. As for realistic scale speed, I think that would get boring. At some point we must take into account that we are playing with toys for enjoyment. (something I forget when racing with the club, That's why I have to take a break now and then)

John W.
 

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How about SPEED BOATS !!!

No scenery just water !!!

Trouble is if you're a 'Thunderbirds' fan like me...

...you might have noticed their 'real' water never looks realistic.

DAMN.

Even water has scale.

How about sci-fi ?

What about that movie ? Think it was called 'Incredible Journey' where they miniaturise people & send them inside 'real' people.
( or was 'Incredible Journey' about hero dogs ? Mmmm....).

Cheers

Si.

A proper gear-box is an interesting thought.
 

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Hi again rallyP

My tinplate Ascari Ferrari is the slowest car at MRW at about 20 sec a lap.
Average is about 10-12 a lap.
That old-school Ferrari must have slid like hell, with no wings and all.
Damn fun car to drive I think.

Si.

I agree with Mr. Flippant.
The tyres are shot on my favorite Astra.
Loads of weight in the boot as well.

Aint half FUN though !
 

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interesting thread -

i have been working on and off for years on a modular 'garden layout' to someday incorporate a race track or two with a small 'city' and other elements tied together with some rural roads and rails ...

so i guess having started with slot cars i am gravitating the other way - so i can play with my trains and scenery too!!



as many of you know i have waaaay too many projects on the go (currently working on my version of a 1/32 pioneer zephyr train too - yikes!)

a thought on speed ... back when i was a young guy playing with my first slot cars ... tyco provided a small plastic clip to place around the 'throat' of their thumb style plungers so you could only go at part throttle (dad tried to keep those on there, but my brother and i insisted we needed full throttle for cool crashes and spinouts) - something like that might also allow for a 'less competitive' more scenic flavor

cheers, Ron
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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Thinking further on your 'perceived scale' quandry Rallyp. The best track I can think of for giving a feel of the grandness of scale nature was GT40's Forest Road course although it never quite managed to get finished. The towering cedars alone had a huge impact on the overall appearance. Add to that the AC2Car system which decreases acceleration slightly and inhibits braking it might be a good way to start. Of course, the overall scale of the project was also quite a deal larger than average.

Thinking on a rally theme, I wonder if you would be able to produce a decent size and therefore scale feel without impacting greatly on space required if the track was able to run around 2 or 3 walls on a supported shelf at just below eye level. It may come up a little like a combination of Joegraphix' latest track project and PoloStu's welsh Coed y Felin.
 

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Somehow, Slowing down the cars just does not sound right. It seems that the best way to slow them down would be to make a track that would not allow for fast driving. A tight curved, hard to drive track. But to me, that sound boring.

John W.
 

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Great topic!

This is something that I've thought about many times over the years too. The observations about track space are correct, but the chances of having enough space to overcome those are slim - but ofcourse, not all 1:1 racetracks are huge, consider Mallory Park for example. Also, real tracks have lumps and bumps - sawtooth kerbs, drain gulleys, 'washboarding' of the track surface in braking and accelleration zones - these all make the cars 'bobble' in a short space. Slot car tracks don't do this (yet).

Making a car move more realistic possibly is something that can be achieved, but it would require a complete rethink of the ethos of a slot car. Look at a real car - it moves independent of the road surface, wallows on suspension, squats on accelleration, dives under braking, slides around a corner (not just out and back into line again), drivers make mistakes and run wide, jump kerbs etc. etc.

I think you'd have to make the cars a lot heavier, have them riding on four wheels with suspension and steering which actually dictates the direction of the car with a guide on a complex arm arrangement that allows for a degree of running wide if you corner too fast. Grip would also need to be lower.

It's a fascinating subject, but unfortunately it's only ever going to be a few nerdy types who try to make it work - but it'll never catch on to the masses.
 

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The theory:
When building a model railway layout in a small space, one way to create the illusion of more space is to create 'view blocks'. The theory is that if the viewer can see the whole layout then it is immediately obvious that the layout is disproportionately small, but if instead the viewer is fed small 'chunks' of scenes then the mind is focused and the illusion of a bigger layout is achieved.

The practice:
Unfortunately, there are problems with moving these ideas across to slot cars. Problem number one is that over-bridges and buildings are commonly found at or near to railway lines, but are not so common by a racing circuit. However, there are items that *are* reasonably common that perhaps you could use - grandstands and pit garages spring to mind, but also maybe farm buildings, fences and bushes for rally stages. Remember that the idea is not so much to give the scene 'realism' as to frame or restrict the viewing angle - to break down the big picture in to managable chunks. Again, this may not work in slot-car racing because you pretty much need to see where the car is at all times, but perhaps that will introduce another element of reducing speed - if you cant see the car you are going to have to slow down lol

Incidently, when I was a kid I used to like to get as many barriers clipped on to the side of my scalextric track as I could - to my young eyes it always seemed to look more real.
 

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It's a fascinating topic for discussion and I'll leave the scenery part of the thread to others who know far more about it. Getting our slot cars to behave more like their 1:1 counterparts is seen as the Holy Grail but should it be? What we'll never be able to do is to factor in the most important part of driving a 1:1 at any degree of speed - driver feel and input. All of our slotting depends on vision and, to a lesser extent, hearing. Driving a real car to anything like its ful potential is dependent on the transfer of feeling from track to steering to hands, not to mention track to seat to butt! How does the engine feel on a given day and conditions? Are the brakes holding up? Do the tyres need an extra couple of pounds? Doing a track day leaves me feeling pretty spent because it's such a physical activity, as well as a whole day of intense concentration, of course. I'm not suggesting for a minute that the quest for increased realism shouldn't continue, quite the opposite, but without connecting our tracks and cars to some sort of sensory seat that computer gamers use it seems like we'll miss what makes 1:1 driving feel like...1:1 driving! I guess any form of scale hobby - slotting, model making, etc. is about simulation rather than replication. Maybe real cars shuld become more like slot cars - I'd love to clip in a new engine for £20!

Cheers all,

Roger
 

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Great thread rally P I've been after the same sort of illusions. It's not for everyone and I've had years of not worrying about scale looking driving and had fun but I've been drawn the same way for some time now. I guess when people stay in a hobby for a long time there is a need to push barriers a little and explore ideas.

Definitely traction or lack of it, is the key for me.

To this end I've binned the magnets, run on sport track which is like driving on lino, put in some inclines and tight bends and for rally things slow down but for me become more fun. It's good to intersperse some flowing sections though or it can get dull. Best of both worlds I guess.

This is how I got completely obsessed by the Col de Turini as it appeared to tick a lot of boxes. The hairpins allow lots of track in a small space but echo 1:1 and the inclines slow things down on the way up. Coming back down you can't go too fast into tight bends which adds to the illusion of scale speed. I've spent an awful lot of time recently scaling the individual stones that make up the walls of the Col, when it comes out right the whole thing oozes realism as the cars go around the track. It only takes being a couple of mm out in the scaling to look wrong though.

My latest project is some turnarounds so I can go up a set of hairpins and then come back down. I've been racking my dull brain recently to figure some way to do a realistic looking handbrake turn. My turnarounds produce an effect more like a power slide than a handbrake turn.

I think width of track is important to the overall illusion too, I like driving on Ninco but it's just too wide to ever look realistic to me.
 

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Targa Freak
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Hi all,

I try to solve some of the problems you were talking about on my new track like descibed below.

1. Space problem: Cant be solved, track has to be fit into the space you have.

2. Carspeed: Having a digital track soon might hopefully enable me to run ghostcars. They will run much slower than they could, thus lowering speed of all others, too and allowing real overtaking action while not affecting fun. Furthermore it will avoid plastic-shreddering-high-speed-material-orgies... Having a best lane the cars will have to follow when not overtaking will raise realism. Avoiding inkle-winkle-zigg-zagg-left-right-hairpin-combinations will enlarge optical flow of the track.

3. Scenery: An absolute "must" for my track, but: No overcrouding by too much things on too little space. Buildings to be smaller size than 1:32 everywhere on the track, not only in background (Experimenting with 1:38 to 1:45 from scratch in the moment). Trees to be smaller scale-size, too. Thus will make track appear bigger, at least optically. Backgroundscenery as realistic "must", too. Not everything has to be 1:32 in the end: Scale has only to be optically correct. On my testtrack I found that adding only one real 1:32 item like a fence or building will absolutely and directly change "optical" size of the entire track! The more items without "real" scale can be used (trees, bushes, grass, rocks) on the track the better the "overall optical correctness" will be! Space arround the track seems to be necessary: For racing the range varies around 0 cm up to about 10cm (to allow drifting). For scenery and optical reasons at least 20cm seem to appear optically correct (If watching a driving car an fixing it with your eyes an item that is located about 20cm off the cars place will not be recognized any more (by me!?
).

4. Tunnles or mountains seem to turn out to be an absolute no-go in my case. They always (!) seem to turn out somehow optically unrealistic and undersized (why build a tunnel in a 25m high "mountain" or create a curvy road around a 5m rock?)
Started to change the Targa Strada Del Vino because of this point). For this reason smoother hills seem to allow more perfection.

5. It has to please you whatever the others tell.
So far so good...will follow this thread closely. Regards Jens
 

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Is "realistic" driving in 1/32 tracks possible?
No, not fully "realistic" driving - few seem to disagree with that.

It's possible to make some aspects of driving more realistic, usually at the expense of something else.
So its all down to picking the aspects of realism that most interest you and going for it.
That'll probably compromise some aspect of realism, very likely compromise the racing...
But hey its all about your perception of realism, perception is in the eye of the beholder - so if you are happy nobody else can tell you that you've got it wrong!
 

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I think the cars are the only part of this past time that work at 1/32nd scale. As others have mentioned, it is much more about what looks right in the space provided, than actually going out, measuring everything and creating it perfectly to scale. The best we can do is play with perceived scale to make it look right, even though the next person may well perceive it differently.

I think it'd be easier to change the way we drive to match the slot cars ... when my father in law had a go on my track with my Ninco Elise, he commented that it was exactly what it felt like being a passenger in my real one
 
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