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Scott Brownlee
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The thread on the new Fly 911, apart from being one of the fastest growing on SF, has thrown up a few comments about the relative performance of slot cars.

Some want the 911 to be slower than the 917 which in turn should be slower than the 956. Another ranking might be that the 1950s Vanwall lap slower than the 2004 Williams.

I understand and appreciate this desire as it is a close relative of the liking for scale and livery accuracy that attracts many to the hobby, including me, but can it be achieved. I got to wondering what, in 1/32 terms, the difference in speed between these cars might be if they were matching their full size inspiration.



Through a bend, say Tertre Rouge at Le Mans since I have spent hours and hours there watching all manner of cars come past, the real difference in speed between a 911 and a 956 is probably only 30-40 mph. I am guessing here, but rough estimates will serve the purpose I think. A speed difference of that magnitude is a significant advantage for a real race car and of course translates into a better straight-line speed on the following Mulsanne section, but in 1/32 scale it is only about 1mph, or quarter walking speed.



My point - or rather my hopefully thought provoking and thread inducing question - is, does a difference of 1mph in the bends really matter? Could you even perceive it?

Already I can hear you saying a lap time is made up of more than corner speed, and you are right, but straight-line speed is determined, more than anything - and especially on a slot car - by power and all RTR slot cars have broadly speaking the same power. Of course traction plays a part, I believe it is the power of the motor which unnaturally equalises slot car performance, not the chassis. (I should stress, I am thinking about cars without magnets at all times.)

Rather than spend hours adding weight, new guides and who knows what else, I think the best way to provide scale accurate performance differentials is to have adjustable power supplies, not least since turning a knob on the transformer appeals to my lazy nature.

But what do I know.
 

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there are different cars from different stables built at different times. the only way to get parity is to buy your cars in pairs (I race at home hence pairs for now) and they're still different.

I think the weight of the body & it's height influence a slotty more than you'd think. Also try to run a Scaley Vanwall against something with a wide track? get enough different cars & I thnk you'll find the difference in laptimes is (by scale) quite reasonable.
 

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Average speed for a lap with my (2003) renault F1 car is 6.93mph. The car seems a LOT faster than my Carrera Ferrari 575 GTC which can achieve 6.15mph. (lap times are 3.8 seconds and 4.3 seconds respectively)

So my answer is a definate yes!
 

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Peter Farrell
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I, like Scott am of the opinion that probablt the most equable way of differentiating between Car types is by regulating the power supply.
I have, for a long time, on my own cicuit regulated power for 1.5 litre cars as opposed to 2.0, 3.0 & 3.5 litre F1.
The same has applied to Sports/GT Saloon classes. also of course tyre sizes and compounds.
For me this has made the racing more realistic.
Alfetta
 

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I would agree that corner speed is not too different, but noticable. The odd thing is the skinny tired car may corner harder than the one with wide tires? It's a game of CG vs. track vs. tire grip. Adjustable power is the easiest method for sure, but it is fun trying to tune for the proper speeds.

Oddly, with bikes, the smaller ones actually corner faster. A 125GP bike can can carry a higher corner speed than a MotoGP bike, but that is quickly made up by acceleration and top speed.
 

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I don't think the number of mph difference is important so much as the % - and you notice the speed even more if the car in the other lane is doing 5% more than you!
 

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I think the full size cars you refer to would be in different classes anyway. The 911 at Lemans would be lapped many times by the more powerful class prototypes in an endurance race. However they would be more equal on a cricuit with many bends. I would think putting in less powerful motors and running races in classes with equal power would be a solution.
Regards Allan
 

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The guys advocating varable power supplies have it absolutely right.
It's by far the simplest method of ensuring any level of power that can be agreed to by the racers involved - it makes total sense.
 

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Interesting topic guys.

The guys I race with are about to start up a class combining cars like the Slotit 956 sport style sedans such as the Fly Racing Capri and some other sport car classes.

We recently had a run with this class structure and found the lap times amoung the differing classes were similar to what you would expect on the track in 1 to 1 racing.

The 956 had the design to get it around the track quicker than the Fly Capri to the point of putting a lap or so on it every 5 minutes.

We are racing non magnet and are running this as a series where you must run a car from each class over the rounds. It seems to work quite well.

The adjustable power supply is the best method for the older cars to keep the scale accuracy closer though.
 
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