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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Gene Husting built his (and pro-racing) first anglewinder car in late 1967, after he saw a picture of a 1/32 scale car built by Roy Moody in the midwest. When he showed up at Gallagher's J&J Raceway in California, the car, fitted with a Lancer McLaren M6 body, was improperly geared, but it showed great speed. To the great surprise of all present, Gene actually won the weekly pro-race with the car, humbling serious racers such as John Cukras and John Anderson.
The locals pros tried to find every and all reasons why the car was so fast, but centered about the "rocket" motor, ignoring that the speed of the car came form its faster cornering, allowing it to reach a greater top speed.
Bruce Paschal heard of this through the grapevine and called Husting, then talked him into sending the miracle car to him in Luoisiana. Husting sent the car, then built another for himself, and yet another for John Cukras.
John proceeded to win every weekly race at Gallagher's a total of 12 of them, setting a new record there. Then he built himself one, with a removable motor. John Anderson asked Husting to loan him the car, and with it, won another 13 weekly races in a row, beating Cukras' record.
And this brings us to the famous USRA MC&S race, where the entire world of pro-racing changed forever, the anglewinder cars utterly humbling every and all inlines, which became instantly obsolete.

The only surviving car of the 3 built by Husting is the Paschal car. It was returned to Gene a year ago by Bruce in an elegant gesture.
Husting is very jealous and possessive of this car, possibly the most important car in the history of the hobby, but was kind enough to let me take more pictures of it today.
Below are these pics, and I hope that you enjoy them. The body is the one painted by Kovacs and fitted to the car for the MC&S race (they ran coupes) and lettered to Paschal's name.





The drop arm has limited drop and the front axle wire is soldered on top of it, very Dynamic-like.



The motor is a Pactra "Hemi 99" can with a Husting rewound, epoxied and balanced armature, ARCO magnets without shim, Mabuchi FT16D end bell with Champion springs, post sleeves and brushes. Gears are 64-pitch Weldun steel pinion and anodized aluminum spur gear. Guide is a Cox "quick-change", lead wires are Cox. Note the plastic axle spacers straight from regular kits... something that had already disappeared from serious "pro" racing cars for over 2 years...



The front end shows globs of solder, not because Husting was a klutz, but because he wanted to add weight, as much as possible on the drop arm, and at the same time make the car very impact resistant. It worked.



The front wheels are threaded Mini-Riggen with O-ring tires with longitudinal treads and brass adapter for 1/16" piano wire mount.
The rear wheels are Weldun with Associated blue rubber.



The steel plate over the end bell is a glue shield, and there is no problem to remove the end bell, no need to move anything else. However, the motor was never disassembled once in over 30 races this car ran with Husting, then Paschal who absolutely cleaned up with it for weeks, at his local raceway and everywhere he travelled.

The car appears crude, but is in fact well thought out, and certainly was at its time, the fastest and most efficient ever built, notwhistanding its historic trend-setting quality.







The body is a Kovacs-painted Dynamic "Handling Bodies" Lola T70 MKIIIB coupe, painted to look like John Surtees Lola-Aston-Martin of the 1967 Le Mans race. The inlet trumpets are flared aluminum tubing. This car could have won concours too as long as they did not turn it over...
Regards,

Philippe de Lespinay
Historian of Unimportant Tidbits
 

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Fantastic, Dr P!

I wish I'd had that line about adding extra weight when I first started soldering! But that's a beautiful, evocative car- I remember those spindly frames, just how we used to do them before the big pans appeared. And Bob Kovacs seems to have the Loal Aston blue-green colour sorted out all that time ago- it's been bugging me recently! I don't suppose you have a record of the exact shade used? There's another scratchbuilt Xylon in it for you if you do...

Yours in hopes rather than expectation, but thanks for the fascinating post!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I am afraid that even Bob Kovacs would be in dire trouble to supply us with a correct mix...
Regards,

Dr. Pea
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It's progressing but I had too many unwanted interruptions lately...
Regards,

Dr. Pea
 

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I'm a little disappointed that that car hasn't provoked more of a reaction amongst our gentle readers, Dr. P! I was looking forward to a raging debate. Especially from our Rail, who I thought would immediately nominate some antique steam-powered rail car, with a myriad of excellent reasons.

I'm sure you don't underestimate it as being the world's most important as far as I'm concerned, but I am surprised that no-one has tried to dispute that tag.
I wasn't aware at the time who designed and built the first actual anglewinder, but certainly was greatly affected by it. Inlines were suddenly as obsolete as 26D sidewinders were a year or so before. Such a huge and immediate improvement in handling! I had to start bashing my carefully made U-brackets into funny obtuse angles and hunting round for spur gears again. Has any other single chassis development had such a dramatic effect?

Mind- I remember reading about a US racer called Doug Henline, who for his own reasons (possibly the obvious one!) stuck to inlines for a bit longer than most, and seemed to be able to win through sheer driving ability. But I may have got that one a bit tangled up. I usually have.

And the front axle-on-drop arm thing always passed me by. I could never work out the point of that Dynamic chassis, never having owned one (too expensive at the time, and still now!), and never being startled by it's performance in other people's hands. But I was very young then. Drop arm OK- keeps the guide in the slot regardless of what the front wheels are doing. But as soon as you connect the drop arm to the front wheels you lose that advantage. There must be a logical explanation.... Perhaps US tracks were smoother than ours....
 

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Graham Windle
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Drop arms dont work unless sprung down or have a mag on top .Just as an example say you have a car with a drop arm aproaching he top of a hump as the car goes over the hump the drop arm which carries the same momentunm as the rest of the car caries on in the same direction and stays flat and wont drop of its own acord . therefore unsprung non magnetic drop arms dont workthe only thing they might do is if the car tips then the guide might stay in the lot slightly longer ,but if the drop arm is lokedto the front wheels the whees will touch first in the corner and stabalise the car the hinge just adds a certain amounnt of de coupling similar to running a loose body on a plastic car .
And Philippe the car is a classic but didnt Chas Keeling build the first angle winder with his ks powered harvey aluminium special . This car as I recall was 4 wheel drive and had the motor diagonaly across the chassis to drive the front and rear wheels ,I think I have a pic somewhere.
 

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Hmmm. Thanks Grah. I think I understand. I was always thinking in terms of the tipping effect rather than the 'hump' effect I suppose. We did use to spring the arms a little or put loads of lead on the end, and the amount of travel was pretty small anyway... I use a magnet now. But that momentum you mention doesn't necessarily apply if it is a random deflection on the wheels rather than a hump in the track anyway, does it? And presumably those 'rally' cars with drop arms to use on special tracks are a bit of a waste of time... although I have no experience of them. But I do agree about the 'decoupling' effect, probably the most important.

Cool car though, no doubt about that!
 

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Graham Windle
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Dont know about the rally tracks but look at the picks on slotcentre and in gsr they look sprung I have used a sprung guide on ninco track to help with the bumps but Im not convinced as I tend to run tripods anyway but lets not get back into the tripod vs 4 wheel argument again . I have just down loaded the pics and might have to make a replica of this chassis just for the sake of it , I dont have a pactra motor to use but I have a rikochet which is of similar apearance, any ide what wind Husting used on the arm so I can get the power some where near.
 
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tx, I was thinking along the lines you wrote, as I think that some of the earlier rail cars are much more important in the history of our hobby but this is so subjective that to every person, the most important car will be different. I think Walkden Fisher's rail Mercedes is too me one of the most important cars but I think that it is impossible to narrow it down too one car.

I can see if you were in America when Gene built this car, pro-racing then this would be a very important car, but to me personally it is a great car but it has almost no historical significanse as it was just another step in building faster pro-racing cars.

RR
 

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Gee, Mr P, you been talking to Mope recently? Certainly picked up the hyperbole 'ting.

I'm with RR on this one, it may be the most important car in American slot racing history but surely not the world.

Like you say, "The car appears crude..."

Guess it marks a time, rather like at Indy with the arrival of rear-engined cars, when the design rulebook was torn up and rewritten, everything else consigned to history.
 

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To be fair, if it was American, then it more or less meant 'World' in them there days!

I liked drop arms and still do, but as a separate entity from all other parts of the frame - other than its necessary pivot, of course! ie not with the motor resting on it and not with the front axle on it either.

The curious thing is, that in one form or another, they were all the rage for quite a long time, yet today, are no longer seen on commercial chassis or anything else much beside the gimmicky 'all terrain vehicles'.
 

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Graham Windle
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QUOTE Don't forget to stock up with solder

Its ok howmet I'll just poke my eyes out with the soldering iron first
 

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No no please no! A blindfold will do!

But thanks for today's Big Laugh Grah!

There's always something on the old SF to crack the cheeks. Not always the right pair though..
 

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Graham Windle
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Heres a pic of Chas Keelings angled harvey aluminim spec circa 1964



sorry about the quality but its an old pic but as you can see Chas used a k's frame motor at an angle diagonaly across the chassis to give 4 wd he used contrate gears and not spurs.
Is this the earliest angle winder or can some one find one older?
 

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I think that one is in a class of its own!
Very neat and innovative, it probably deserves its own special classification/decription.
Diangle winder?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
QUOTE And Philippe the car is a classic but didnt Chas Keeling build the first angle winder with his ks powered harvey aluminium special .

I am well aware of Chas Keeling's Harvey since the late 1960's... But it has NOTHING to do with the angle-winder principle and theory. It is simply an inline in which the motor has been positioned at a slight angle so as to help the four-wheel drive transmission, a major mistake in itself. The car never performed any better than any of its contemporary competitors, it was just another of these early days curiosities, like full suspensions and differential. In the bin.

Now why is the Husting car (or for that matter, the Roy Moody car) so important to the hobby? Because, as the Cooper-Climax brought the end of front-engine cars in F1 and Indy, the angle-winder completely revolutionized the hobby just at a time where it was begining to die. It was, is and will be for a long time, the most effective way to actual performance instead of advertised gimmicks, the "final solution" of weight distribution vs traction vs polar momentum vs any other factor. NO OTHER SINGLE RAIL OR SLOT CAR EVER had as much influence on the hobby as this one, not only in America but on the entire planet. While the toy industry is still mostly stuck on inlines, it is quite obvious that the best of the toys (once the crutches provided bay the magnets are removed) are sidewinder, and once the toy industry will move into the cobalt-magnet field and produce smaller motors with tiny little square mags, adios inlines, all of them. If any of you think that the FLY Viper is the nec-plus-ultra of engineering with its front-engine layout, I strongly suggest a return to school to get back to basic mathematics.
That's why.

By the way and to come back to drop arms: I unvoluntarily created a little revolution of my own by being the fellow who killed the drop arm for good on the pro racing level. This happened in late 1972 when as one of the world's top pros, I was first to win consistently with a car without a drop arm. The entire center section was solid, with the front wheels being completely independent from the center section. While there was some ancestry to this as one could actually build a similar contraption from Dynamic parts off the shelf, the performance of such contraption was not even close to be in the same league. It was not long before the entire field in the USA and UK copied the design and began winning on their own. Such cars, called "Diamond" because of their peculiar front-end shapes, absolutely dominated professional slot car racing from that very moment in 1972 until the advent of the perimeter frame in the late 1980's.

Why did I do this? Simply because drop arms of ANY KIND are an engineering mistake and present ZERO advantages and MANY inconveniences, the worst of them being causing "launching", an actual taking off in the straightaway (flying), resulting in costly crashes. This happens when the car begins hinging itself under full power (and we are not talking Slot.It V12 here...) around its pivot point where the drop arm is hinged. I experimented with stiffer and stiffer springs and the cars got better and better, so I built a prototype where the arm was actually soldered between the main frame rails. It did not work well until I removed the front wheels altogether, and then I understood the whole advantages. So I built "A" arms and hinged them from the center, then made adjustable springs so as to use the wheels to help reduce the drag on the guide flag while cornering. Boy, did it work!
A month later, the car held the world record on the American Blue King track, the reference track around the world, a full 1/2 second faster than anyone had ever been at the time. No one had EVER had such an advantage, and I used it to the fullest in 1973, cleaning up in most national-level races entered, while I sent cars to Europe that cleaned up there, especially when Bern Mobus won the 1974 Euro Championship with one, while another sent to Sweden alowed Per Gustafson to dominate the field there.

Drop arms are found on slower cars or Spanish do-ickey gizmos in dire need of technical complexity to generate sales to the credulous ignorant, period. Add this to oil-filled shock absorbers and working diffs... God saves us all.

Regards,

Dr. Pea
 
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