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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I want to have a go at making my own slot car track. Mainly to use with my 2 children who would spend hours on it I know. I've visited a variety of websites with pictures of different tracks people have built and I confident I can give it a go. Size isnt a massive issue, we have a garage that, if cleared, could be the home of a decent sized track (imagine single car garage size). On the other hand, as a starter project I am considering a simple figure of 8 smaller track that could be put in the house. Maybe on a smaller scale that 1:32. Is this possible? As a prototype to understand the basics?

I am after as much advice as people can give. I have a few queries regarding the thickness of mdf required and also the router bit most commonly used? Also, when butting/fixing 2 pieces of mdf together what is the best way to keep the copper tape continuous that will also allow the track to be taken back down or folded up if need be. This information tends to vary from site to site and some websites are American etc and so the terminology is misleading for a newcomer to the hobby.

I am an electrician by trade so am not too concerned with the electrical implications, however I bet this is the area I end up asking more questions in lol.

Not in any mad rush to start/complete the project, happy to ask plenty of questions before I start etc and plan it properly.

Thanks,

Bob.
 

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Welcome to SF Bob. I deleted the second copy of this thread.
I'll let others try to answer some of your questions
Gareth
 

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Hi Bob, welcome to the mad house.
Think carefully before you build a track. Once you've done one you can't stop. I'm on my eighth. Problem is i'm still learning too.
I take it you're going routed?
Take a look at how I joined my 3 lane routed. page 1
http://www.slotforum.com/forums/index.php?...t=0&start=0

I route a slot in the side of the 2 x 2 frame and fit a steel bar in. It keeps the height the same. For lining up the slot I use 1/2" bolts. Then then pull the board together tight. There are better ways i'm sure, but it works for me. I'll be doing the same on the rally track.

I would say to try with lots of plastic layouts to get the kind of track you want. Make a wish list, even if it's in your head. Long straight, 's' bends, chicanes, hairpins etc.
Are you going analogue or digital?

All the answers are my threads, but to save you looking.
Yes a proto board would be a good learning curve.
I use 12mm MDF, this gives the board strength still when you have a 8mm slot. 3mm router bits. I used to use expensive ones (£9) each but found that they seem to snap as easy as the £1 ones. So I get them from Toolstation now. £1 is so much easier to swallow when it snaps.
I also used to fold the copper around the end of the board, but on the rally track I have gone for the 'Savage' method, bolts through the MDF with nuts and crimp lugs. That should be familiar territory for you.

Hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the welcome guys. AAWSCC with regards the router bit. Its a 3mm width? Whats the depth? Have you got a link to the Toolstation ones you use please? Thanks - off to take a look at your links now mate
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You mentioned that I seem to have decided to go with a routed track. What other options are there other than buying a boxed scalextric kit???
 

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Just remember that with plastic track, you can try different layouts (if you change your mind and want something different) or have a temporary layout. While routed pretty much commits you to one layout until you want to build another from scratch.

Here is one chap who changes his layout every year using plastic track (see gokartride's blog).

Check it out before commiting.

Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Is it possible to make a 3 or 4 lane track with plastic track? What type/model/make of track am I looking at building it from for 1:32 scale cars etc. With plastic, is it just a case of picking up the required pieces of track from ebay buying individually etc until I have the correct amount of each to assmble my track?

Hope my questions arent too noob for you to answer but I am a complete newcomer!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Which of those 3 manufacturers are the most popular choice? Is there a free online track designer that will give me a list of all the parts I need with codes to complete ???
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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Scalextric tends to be the track of favour in the UK due to availability. Ninco often wins the favoured stakes elsewhere. Scaley is the smallest track of the 3, then Ninco, then Carrera. It will take more room to make the same layout in Carrera than it will in Scalex.

Free track design software exists. I used SlotMan. Many other possibilities also. I think most use Ultimate Racer. Libraries are available for each track type.

Embs
 

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I really only had two large plastic tracks, didn't really bother trying lots of different plastic tracks before I went wood. My last plastic track had 108' lane length. I now have a two-lane wood track, with 54' lane length, and I really like it. I joined a club for a short time and had a chance to try wood tracks and, at least for me, I could never go back to plastic.

Plastic has lots of advantages. You can change layouts, it's light-weight and easy to move around, power supplies and driver hook-ups are generally built in, you can easily go digital if you want, you can easily run magnets, and I'm sure there are others.

Disadvantages, at least for me, are that I find the track to be noisy and not very smooth, you're limited to whatever lane separation the manufacturer has decided is correct, you have a limited selection of corners and running without mags is (again at least for me) not much fun with the standard power supplies and slippery plastic.

Before you jump into wood 'though, you should try out a few tracks. There should be some clubs in your area that would welcome you to come by and run some laps.

I suggest you wander around the Slot Car Corner website, lots of good advice there.

Randy
 

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I use plastic track because I like changing the layout at least once a month, I've had Carrera, Sport and Classic at home, Carrera is good but lacks grip and is expensive to buy, Classic is cheap but the track joins can be a pain to get good connectivity, Sport is better but still suffers with connectivity on track joints.

I'm currently using Sport for my circuit racing track and a combo of Sport, Classic and SCX for my rally track, Carrera was good but took up too much room (sold the track for more than I paid for it).
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Im based in South Wales.

If I wanted to build a 4 lane plastic track do I design it so its simply 2 x 2 lane tracks along side one another?
 

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Boberto,

When building a 4 lane track you need to make sure you have a mixture of radius for the corners as you will need for example R2 corners to go inside of R3 or outside R1, also you need to think about how you will get power to the extra lanes is running analogue or how you will count laps. In digital you would need to reduce back to two lane or have a converted power base.

I'm sure someone on here will have either a picture of a 4 lane track or a diagram showing the parts used.

If I remember tomorrow and no one else has posted it I will do an example track and upload it for you.
 

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Where you to mate? I'm in Porthcawl and Mr Modifier is in Ammanford.
We're both up for meeting up and pooling resources or being cheap labour during builds (i.e. supply tea and biccies and we'll work all day). Also up for having a good burn around each other's tracks.

EDIT** And go and have a look at Wye Valley clubs "Aberstone Raceway". A great 4 lane Ninco track up at Nevill Hall Hospital, Abergaveny.
CLICKY

Unfortunately, that IS a bar at the far end of the photgraph.
 

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Rich Dumas
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There is software available to help you design a plastic track, Scalextric has it for their track and that feature is included with Ultimate Racer 3. My club has many wood tracks. There is actually no reason that you have to dump your entire track if you want to make changes. Several of our tracks are modular and are easily reconfigured. We have found that if your track is properly designed you will not get bored with it, even after many years.
SMR
 
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