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Discussion Starter · #21 ·


Size comparison out of the box...



In race spec...

I have also notice that (on Carrera track at least) the super grippy front tyre is upsetting the car through the corners. Removing it improves handling even more. Luckily it fits the back hub as well, so you can sand it down a bit. I think I'll trim about 1.5-2mm off it, and varnish it. That should make it go well whilst still looking as much like a normal bike as they ever did...

Lotus
 

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QUOTE And theres another problem with the packaging that no one has commented on - they forgot to put 'Scalextric' on the front of the boxes!

Or perhaps they were too ashamed!

Um? If the tyre wears, isn't it eventually going to slip into the slot?

[Edit after seeing the photos posted above]
You have to put all that carp on the outriggers to get it to perform decently????

I know I'm the voice of doom and negativity an' all but that's a joke.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
QUOTE And theres another problem with the packaging that no one has commented on - they forgot to put 'Scalextric' on the front of the boxes!

Maybe they think they'll sell more if people don't think it was made by them!


You caught the dreaded 'carp' disease...
That's aload of crap isn't it?

But anyway, the carp is needed...

Lotus
 

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QUOTE You have to put all that carp on the outriggers to get it to perform decently????

No, you have to put that amount of weight on to perform in a way without magnets that satisfies lotus03 on Carrera track if I read the review right.

Carrera track slots are 50% wider than SPORT track slots.

Please keep the emotion out of the review and keep it factual. Good reviewers should let the readers make up their own mind and lotus03 favours an arrangement without magnets so his review will be helpful for other like minded Slotforum readers.

No doubt lotus03 will apply black paint to any outrigger set up arrangements when they have more permanence rather than the being the temporary arrangement used during his test. And for clarity in the photograph surely it is better for all that he does not paint the weights at this stage in his testing so that we are able to see what is required in the view of lotus03 to offer him the drive that he wants.


Moped
 

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Moped makes one particularly pertinent point there.

Out of curiosity, I dug out my digital caliper and carried out slot width checks (that is the GAP) on Sport and Carrera track.
Sport varied from 2.5 - 2.8mm
Carrera showed 3.1 - 3.2mm
Carrera slot width is inherently more consistent due to the moulded plastic sidewalls/liners on the inside of their slot, but I'll come back to that shortly.

Depending on which measurements are chosen, the actual GAP difference between the two makes varies from 0.3mm to 0.7mm (between 10% and 30% of the Sport figure in round numbers) and these variances, regardless of percentage quoted, are bound to make a difference to the tyre running on it.
But it's more complicated than that.

Sport RAILS are approx 4.4mm wide, totalling around 8.8mm for the pair.
Carrera RAILS are approx 4.2mm wide, totalling around 8.4mm for the pair.
Hard to measure accurately due to the shape of the top face and the bed angles, but the difference here is very small. Not to say it might not be significant though . . .

However, the real complication is brought in by those moulded plastic slot liners in the Carrera track, which total around another 3.4mm width of something that certainly isn't flat track surface! Those liner top edges are downset, slightly lower than the metal rails, making the tyre/surface contact situation even more complicated! While those liners are little, if any, problem for cars and do carry several very definite advantages, they are hell for bikes, with their single tyres running more or less over them all the time, slithering about over greatly more variable surface on Carrera track than on Sport.

So, regardless of debate as to the actual numbers used for comparison, it would seem very clear that the bikes must be at a significant disadvantage on Carrera track compared with Sport.

Having said that, I am absolutely 100% for testing them on ALL common makes of track in the interest of the wider slot buying public. They NEED to know.
I congratulate Lotus on his dedication to the quest and looking forward to further episodes with great interest.

Not like me to forecast review findings, but I would realistically anticipate similar observations on Ninco track, due to its similarity to Carrera in also incorporating slot liners.
But Ninco is a little different in other ways, as we shall probably see.
 

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Best, I feel for I haven't the time to build a test track - will be Sport. It is as flat as Carrera, but has the rails wider and a bit closer together to work better with the magnet. No surprise since that's the track they were designed for.

Still think a drop arm wth magnet just behind the guide would be big improvement.

Scott
 

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QUOTE No surprise since that's the track (Sport) they were designed for.

Actually I think they were "designed" for routed tracks...

Very unusual for Scalextric, but the stock magnet has little or no "downforce" - so the "plastic" track its raced on has little effect in that category. I can understand purists pulling out the "ruler" to see if a car...bike...is truly in "scale" proportions...but to measure slot width and inner liners is very telling of the poor stock performance of these bikes. I agree that Scalextric should have offset the guide so that the tires didn't run in the "slot"...though I'm sure that would have lead to raging controversy too, but the bike probably would handle better if they had. Also, since the tire is of a "soft" compound, every section of track is going to slowly eat away/groove these tires as it passes over the rail connections...again, no matter what "plastic"...though I'd say Classic will be on the low end for "mileage" as their connections are far from "smooth".

That's why I think routed tracks may be their ideal setting since "weight" on the runners rather than magnets make them much more controllable, coupled with the seamlessness of a copper taped routed track.

Though it's nice to know that they will include the banked turns with the sets - I just don't think 10 degrees will make much difference. My Carrera 2/30 banking is much steeper and though the bike "likes" going into that kind of turn way better than a flat curve, it still deslots on exit in stock condition. Adding the weight on the runners does resolve that problem...but unlike my slot cars, the bike requires braking before entering the turn - the cars can go flat out into them with just a "blip" to set them up for the exit of the corner.

Now, that's not really a bad thing as a banked Carrera oval with slot cars is a bit boring from the driving skills side...racing the bike does make you pay attention more. Though my lap timer is on the fritz for the moment, my cars can turn 1.5 seconds on the 30 foot oval easily in the inner lane - I'd estimate the bike is a good .5 seconds slower...and that's a lot on such a fast track.

Still, no matter what any of us may come up with as the perfect fix for these bikes in the end...the bottom line is WHY did Scalextric with its reputation of making excellent RTR's release these bikes with such ill-handling to the public? Unless their testing facilities are far from the real world, they had to KNOW this? Did they think that it would be acceptable to make them ultra-fast down the straightaways, but have to "walk on eggs" through the corners...again, in stock condition?

Put bluntly - ALL of us, from seasoned experts to those brand new to slot racing have no problem going flat out on a straightaway...it's the handling of the curves that we are always "searching" for that ideal control/set up - that these bikes are "testing" our abilities to the "nth degree" just to get "acceptable" handling...well, I need not say more.
 

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i would imagine an offset guide would make the handling on left hand turns very different form right hand turns - since in one the rear wheel would cross the slot...

people are beginning to say top tuners will be able to get these bikes performing well on routed tracks, but they are not a good product for first time buyers.

I have seen videos and real life drives of these bikes, box standard, on scalextric track. No they don't move as realistically as the cars, and they have to take corners a lot slower than cars on a well maintained track.

There are 2 points regarding newcomers:
I got back into slots last year, and have no propper memories of my childhood HO set's performance; I was ASTONISHED at the speeds my untuned unoiled scalextric GT40s could do; I was AMAZED when later I realised the back ends of the cars slid and fishtailed like real cars. Now that I know what the cars can do, I find the bikes look very slow. If I had been drawn into scalextric by the bikes instead of the cars, I think I would have been pretty happy with their box stock speed.

Secondly - I have seen a few shop scalextric tracks. These generally have dirty-ish track and cars with dirtyish tyres. Much like a home set if the owner hasn't read up on slot forum about tyre cleaning and track cleaning. The cars on these tracks are SLOWER than the bikes - and I think the same would happen at home, since braids clean the rails.

Ah well, just some thoughts...
 

· Brian Ferguson
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QUOTE Actually I think they were "designed" for routed tracks...

The smoothness of routed tracks may help, but unless it's an older track, the sharp edges of the slot may chew up those tires faster than my dog can eat cookies. I cut my finger on a slot edge after routing, and even after sanding them the edges are far more sharp and defined than on plastic track. (The fool went to check and just cut a finger again!
) If those tires are soft, and riding in the slot, they may not last long on a routed track. Just a "heads up".
 

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Okay, I'll agree about the lack of tire mileage on a routed track too...however, the lack of plastic track joints and the smoothness of a routed track should make it more favorable for the bikes. These slot bikes "accent" every nuance of a plastic track compared to a slot car making for a very "nervous" looking machine as it traverses the circuit.

And from a "tuning" standpoint - other than a complete redesign, adding weight/magnets seems to be the only thing one can do...at the moment one can't change tires or wheels, or change the gear ratio, or change the motor, or change the guide (though modifying it for "depth" might help), can't lower the "body" for better COG, etc., basically outside of weights and/or magnets all our known "tuning" tips are pretty much useless for the Moto GP's.

To me, I think the only "salvation" for the bikes is that Scalextric reads all the feedback on all the forums/reviews and goes back to the drawing boards and comes up with a (hopefully "retrofit") solution...Revell-Monogram "listened" and the new LE Daytona Cobra NOW has 3:1 gearing!!!
 

· Slot City
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Has anyone actually tried running the bikes on Sport track?

Whilst I appreciate it is useful for some people to know how they will run on other track systems, its unfair to judge them based on the results. Performance on Classic is obviously of more importance, but not as much as on Sport track.

We've run them on a Sport circuit and had no problems at all. They were faster than we were expecting, handled well and stayed on the track and in the slot. The feedback we have had from customers so far has also been positive.

Jon,
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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
QUOTE And from a "tuning" standpoint - other than a complete redesign, adding weight/magnets seems to be the only thing one can do...at the moment one can't change tires or wheels, or change the gear ratio, or change the motor, or change the guide (though modifying it for "depth" might help), can't lower the "body" for better COG, etc., basically outside of weights and/or magnets all our known "tuning" tips are pretty much useless for the Moto GP's.

Actually, you can change the gear ratio. Change the pinion on the motor! It's nothing special really, just looks different.

I will test on Sport tomorrow. Results Monday or Tuesday.

Offset guide is a silly idea. Whoever suggested it first obviously didn't think it through. Firstly, they would look even more stupid. Secondly, one side of the outrigger would be longer with more weight one one side of the slot, so it would act like a lever to prise the bikes from the slot. Thirdly, the bikes would cross the slot one one side still, and fall off the track on other sides. Forthly, the pivot round the guide would mean that they handle well strange round bends. For example is there were offset to the left, then goin around left hand bends, how to they swing out? They wouldn't. Fifthly, it another thing to design. It would make them over complicated. Sixthly, SF members would moan because they weren't inline with the slot, and it doesn't make them look like real bikes... Oh and seventhly, why bother? The tyre wear is not any worse than soft Proslot tyres, which everyone replaces after each race meeting (almost).

Anyway, I hope seven reasons are enough for people to stop moaning about the bikes running in the middle. Most of the people who have commented haven't even seen or tried them yet.

Hopefully, sceptics will reserve comments untill I have completed the review. But you know they won't...

Lotus

PS. Thanks for the kind words guys. It makes it worth the effort when you are appreciated.
 

· Brian Ferguson
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Lotus.... you take things so personally!


Okay, very nice review (seriously!) and it's cool to hear from someone who has actually played with these things!
I do appreciate that!

But the underlying reality seems to be that they are poor "slot cars" - yes, perhaps they should be, as they are bikes! - but nonetheless, without some work, and apparently some different considerations for track, they are not gonna warm the hearts of too many slotters, especially the newbies who haven't a clue as to how to make them work!

Little Johnny may not know that weight on the outriggers is a possible answer/cure for his troubles. He may also not realize that his specific track has an influence since his cars run fine. I don't see any sign here that Scaley has produced a slot "vehicle" that deserves great respect!

I'll still buy a car first!
 

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QUOTE I don't see any sign here that Scaley has produced a slot "vehicle" that deserves great respect!

You would expect me to disagree so I will. Considering that the MotoGP bike design has about as little magnetic downforce as any Scalextric vehicle in recent times it performs miraculously considering it is faced with Newtonian laws of physics. If you want Trans Am Mustang and Camaro type performance then put a bar magnet in, but not on the stabaliser.

Was it Morgan who produced a three wheeler car with one wheel on the back and two on the front?

It would be very interesting indeed to see somebody make up a Morgan three wheeler type scratchbuilt car using the MotoGP chassis. My feeling is that the moment this is done by somebody is the moment non magnet racing club rules will have to be changed as a slot car with this design will win everything in sight!

Why?

Because there will be only one rear wheel putting the power down on the track with a direct drive to that wheel so more of the power from the motor will be getting to the track with less being lost in friction from bearings and the effect of having two rear wheels fighting for grip as the outside wheel is taking a wider arc than the inside wheel, yet spinning at the same speed.

It sounds like a job for GRAH1. However, at this time is anybody prepared to cut up their brand new MotoGP bike to scratchbuild a three wheeler car?


It would be a world first for anybody who did, so a bit of eternal fame would be in order for that person.

Although I would guess that spares will soon be available to enable this type of scratchbuilding to take place.


Moped
 

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Because of the fact that some people don't believe me not having problems racing my Scalex bike, here's a 30 sec. video (10MB) I took with my digital camera on my 43 feet track. I raced 100 laps in 12:30.87 which means an average of 7.5 sec/lap.

>> Video <<
 

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QUOTE (moped rider @ 7 Jun 2004, 19:21)Why?

Because there will be only one rear wheel putting the power down on the track with a direct drive to that wheel so more of the power from the motor will be getting to the track with less being lost in friction from bearings and the effect of having two rear wheels fighting for grip as the outside wheel is taking a wider arc than the inside wheel, yet spinning at the same speed.
Interesting theory Mope!
However, I have another opinion ..hehe
based on my limited slot experiences, and to some extent real world experiences.
The little cars invariably have more than enough power to spin up their conventional rear axles for fun whilst setting off. That means that BOTH rear wheels and their respective contact patches' friction have been overcome by the torque and power of the motor. Having only one rear wheel, unless its single contact patch is larger than the two wheel config, must surely mean that the motor will have an even easier job of breaking traction. Therefore I put it to you that the vehicle would in fact be slower down the straight. The reduction in losses through the bearings would I feel not be offset by any "gain" in traction.

Now, I agree with you about the rear tyres fighting for grip on corners due to a lack of differential action i.e. the car wants to swap ends under application of power. However, if a differential was present (Vanquish cars, of which I have no experience) surely once the power took the easiest route (the inside wheel) it would just cause that wheel to spin up. In doing so there would be negligible tractive effort provided by the other rear wheel to drive the car out of the corner hence it would slow down.

I postulate that a single driven wheel to the rear would lessen the chance of oversteer when compared to a conventional two wheel set up, but I'm not sure that it would be any quicker.

Why is it that so many powerful rear drive cars specify limited slip diffs?

Good debate!


Mark.
 

· Graham Windle
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I dont usualy slag things off on the forum but after trying a scaley bike at wrexham I can honestly say what a load of rubbish .True they look great and as a shelf model they are superb but as a possible racer never in a million years . Sorry scaley but this one needs to go back to the drawing board.

(sorry if my opinion might upset some but it is just my opinion )
 
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