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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I'm almost finished in the construction phase of my track. It is around 90 feet on a 6'x14.5' table constructed from 36 2x4's and 5 sheets 1/2 plywood, stained in gunstock with two coats varnish. I designed the track using AnyRail and originally consulted Dennis @ Electric Dreams before I ordered the track parts. He did warn me about a few areas that might present issues with marshalling, specifically leading into the corkscrews and the slight turn before the R3 sections is an area that racers soon learn to slow down for. Otherwise, its a really fun track to race on because there is some strategy involved in switching lanes midway through the course to either take the outer lane or inner lane. The elevation clearance is 3.25" which will accommodate any car or truck and gives the track some added dimension, and powering through that first corkscrew is really fun!

So far with my limited track testing my record lap is 8.02 seconds with a magless Aston Martin Vantage GT3 C4100 (great car BTW!)

I was not planning on adding banking on the track until I started testing adding shims under the track when I had it setup for testing. I added one, not much of a difference. Two, a slight difference on handling with magless cars, then I tried three and four and found that four was the most noticeable difference, and is around a 5 degree bank. I was concerned around the track warping and not being smooth but honestly its not really a problem as the track is flexible enough despite the slight binding up that this introduces its not great enough to be a problem.

This introduced a significant amount of extra time in building this track as I have used over 420 11" contractor shims in the construction of the track sections.

One other problem spot I introduced because I extended the pit lane all the way down the straight is the pit lane switch. If driving too fast on the inside lane sometimes you may miss the pits, which sucks in addition to accidentally going into the pits if the sensor does not detect the car, causing the driver to have to pit or take a 1 lane penalty.

The lane switches can also be tricky after the corkscrews leading into the R3 turns, however the way I see this is it presents a challenge to the racers and may add some additional strategy in whether to switch lanes or stay the course.

Once I added the guard rail sections this changed the dynamic of the track because of being able to hug the guard rail. I have not had much time yet to test laps because I really want to get the edging sections painted and installed, along with power taps, projector screen and mount, etc.

I was hoping for suggestions on a color theme for the edging which includes the guard rail. My original idea was to go with slate grey (rustoleum) which I have painted the support underlayment sections, but then started thinking it would be cool homage to the classic commercial tracks to do a color or multiple colors on the side pieces, like blue for the R4 turns, green for the R3 turns, yellow and/or red for the R2 corkscrews.

It might end up looking like a Playschool set, so the other option I was thinking would be blue for R4 and R3 turns and yellow for the R2 corkscrews.

Suggestions?

Regards,

Nate
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
FYI, I can't show a picture with the track installed yet, as I am wanting to get the construction all finished as the dust was getting really bad but it's starting to get under control now.
 

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You've got a lot of track there, looks like fun to drive! Great table too!

Re the pit lane sensor, I would shorten your pit lane a little and leave at least a 1/2 or 3/4 or 1 straight after the corner to stop cars missing the sensor or as you say, it will keep wrecking races with cars missing pits and cars pitting by mistake as they missed the sensor.

The other thing that I personally might consider is removing the left corksrew completely, this would allow you to raise the height of the track of the middle tier where the pit lane is and so you could quite easily squeeze in some pit buildings so the actual buildings are the support for the track above, kinda like the pits are hollowed out of the mountain? This will help to de-clutter the layout and give you some open space for some scenery, cars etc, where the corkscrew was and the track will flow quite nicely?

Like this:

Motor vehicle Automotive tire Automotive design Bicycle tire Table
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You've got a lot of track there, looks like fun to drive! Great table too!

Re the pit lane sensor, I would shorten your pit lane a little and leave at least a 1/2 or 3/4 or 1 straight after the corner to stop cars missing the sensor or as you say, it will keep wrecking races with cars missing pits and cars pitting by mistake as they missed the sensor.

The other thing that I personally might consider is removing the left corksrew completely, this would allow you to raise the height of the track of the middle tier where the pit lane is and so you could quite easily squeeze in some pit buildings so the actual buildings are the support for the track above, kinda like the pits are hollowed out of the mountain? This will help to de-clutter the layout and give you some open space for some scenery, cars etc, where the corkscrew was and the track will flow quite nicely?

Like this:

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Wow, that's a great layout, liked the youtube video. I like how many lane switchers you have!

I did have that arrangement without the second corkscrew initially before I had the section built and liked it as well, however I think the second corkscrew adds some symmetry to the track but its not as important with the lane switching capability.

I haven't put much thought into any scenery yet. I was thinking that same thing under that straight but brought it down to 3.25" clearance which does not leave much height for anything much.

I have two straight extensions built with three standard straights I can tack onto the end which brings the last turn out a ways and makes the main straight a full 14' which I will might do instead of shortening the pit area. A board fits under those plywood crates in the back there and a shim to get the right height but then can't move the table around on the casters, so long term I want to build an extension onto the table for it and stain/varnish to match.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think I am going to shorten the pit lane by one full straight before doing anything else to fix that pit issue, thanks for the suggestion. I saw the single lane straight pack at the local hobby store and decided to buy them and not considering this, learned the lesson that more track is not always better.
 

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I echo Portals' comment: there is too much track for the table.

I really do not like the spirals/pigtails. The size of the table would allow you to come with something less spaghetti like and with more flow.

Another thing that you should look at is to introduce more variety in the corners: as you have them now they hare all with the same radii (either R2, R3 or R4).

Try to mix them up and have each corner with a unique changing radius.

Finally, a driver that gets in the pitlane because they have to slow down to have their car sensed by the LC is not a good design at all.

Either make the pit lane shorter or move the entrance on the short side of the table before the last corner.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I echo Portals' comment: there is too much track for the table.

I really do not like the spirals/pigtails. The size of the table would allow you to come with something less spaghetti like and with more flow.

Another thing that you should look at is to introduce more variety in the corners: as you have them now they hare all with the same radii (either R2, R3 or R4).

Try to mix them up and have each corner with a unique changing radius.

Finally, a driver that gets in the pitlane because they have to slow down to have their car sensed by the LC is not a good design at all.

Either make the pit lane shorter or move the entrance on the short side of the table before the last corner.
Thanks for the advice. I probably should have posted earlier before I started building all of the sections, as they are difficult to modify. Despite the issues pointed out, its still fun to race on.
 

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ParrotGod
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Look, as long as you are having fun who cares.

Your post seems more like you were looking for suggestions...all that matters is that you are happy with what you have got.
 

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I probably should have posted earlier before I started building all of the sections, as they are difficult to modify
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How high is the middle tier track above the pit lane, there doesn't look like a lot of clearance, it's difficult to tell from the pic but there doesn't look like a lot, remember some cars are significantly taller than others? I can't see you getting a cop landrover in there for example, Mini Countrymans might also be an issue, just something to be aware of?

As Gio says, if the layout ticks all the boxes for you and is fun then that's what it's all about.

At some point you will make changes though, that's a given...
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
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How high is the middle tier track above the pit lane, there doesn't look like a lot of clearance, it's difficult to tell from the pic but there doesn't look like a lot, remember some cars are significantly taller than others? I can't see you getting a cop landrover in there for example, Mini Countrymans might also be an issue, just something to be aware of?

As Gio says, if the layout ticks all the boxes for you and is fun then that's what it's all about.

At some point you will make changes though, that's a given...
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I designed clearances including under the pits to 3.25" to accommodate all cars/trucks. From the picture it seems low because total height of the track is 9.25" at the highest points.

The other thing I have been trying to work around is getting a projector screen on the back wall. I found an Elite Screen 82" 4:3 pull down screen and think I can get the full screen size with the projector mounted on the ceiling.
 

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I decided to do an industrial look to the siding pieces. Hammered black.

Probably should have not have put the back side of the hardboard facing out. I did this due to gluing a strip of foam core board on the inside as the guard rail the cars will hit, softer and less wear on the cars. I was also thinking the texture would look cool but it was hard to get it to stay consistent.

These should look better mounted on the track sections.

More racing, less distration.
 

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I have finished the racetrack minus plastic catch fencing that I am going to install around the outer curves. We raced for hours last night with no cars flying off the table, the guard rails are doing a good job keeping the cars on the track.

Regarding the two corkscrews, they can be problem points for drivers that are not used to the course, however with the car power curves set down a bit to 85-95% for most cars they drive quite smoothly.

I found a way to get my kids off the computers and to race. We are about to hold a championship series of three 25 lap races tonight, whoever places first and second will win some cash that we saved by doing haircuts at home!
 

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...............whoever places first and second will win some cash that we saved by doing haircuts at home!
Good idea, if the wife did this there'd be hundreds in the prize pot LOL
 

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Looks pretty clean to me. Hopefully the racing was fun.

Walls are a tradeoff. Soft walls eventually get banged up from hard racing, but hard walls make scrapes on cars and sometimes catch wings and pull them off. If you keep your car off the wall, it doesn't matter.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hi all,

I tried some of your guy's suggestions and removed the corkscrews from the design and added a winding section down the center that uses all of the available curves I had from the R4, R3 and R2 curves.

The difference is noticeable in the flow of the track as well as improved lane switching.

I made some quick guard rails to give it a run and am enjoying the new track. Lap times are still around 10-11 seconds (with magless cars). Length is about the same, just over 90 feet.

I prefer the curb extensions so that will be added next in addition to fixing up some fencing, guard rail and table extensions.

Also it will be fairly simple to add the LED light strips under the straights and start building scenery like pit area garages as a place to store cars, etc.

Regards,

Nate
 

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