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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Remember these?

I still have 2 of each and imho their functionality hasn't really been surpassed despite the fact that they are probably 20+ years old.

Wonder if Hornby will ever provide an 'all in one' box for Sport or digital that emulates these fantastic boxes?

Did a search on the forums and couldn't find anything about these and just wondered what your thoughts were.
 

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Hi

I sure remember them and have all three. The lap counter worked, but the timing function was not reliable. Apparently they had used the wrong chip. I even sent mine back from to the factory for a check .. of course there was nothing "wrong" .. the timing function was just unreliable because of the above (chip). (The unit would not always catch the quickest car!)

The sound unit worked okay .. although today we should be able to have chips which are tailored to the individual car .. as they have in model railroading ..

And the fuel unit also worked fine, although I wished you could have run longer and not have to fill up as often.

But they were great at the time ... fond memories!!

all my best

Charles
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah, they did have their problems.

I used to find that the microswitch spring and the plastic arms weren't allways strong enough to return the guide detector causing missed laps. Must have had a 'different' version to you as I allways seemed to get reliable lap times so long as laps were detected.

Fuel was adjustable without even opening up the box, albiet you could never get it to run as long as you wanted to.

But that asside, I thought they looked real good all together at the side of the track, and even better having 2 of each on a 4 lane circuit!

We do finally have a lap counter capable of trapping to 1000th sec, but the display is tiny and it doesn't display fastest lap easily.

And sound .... Well, dare I even mention the subsequent Hand throttle sound units? Uuurrrrgrghhhh. It was fantastic to hear the skid sounds every time you took a corner a little too fast, and the crash sound when you came off the rails!

Really though, we should have something providing at least as much functionality, all in one box, and for a similar price (They were £22 each approx, think tank may have been £30). I mean, come on, electronics and technology have come a hell of a long way in 20 yrs!
 

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These were really great. It took me 3 xmas to collect these getting one each year, it was a present i really looked forward to opening.

I still have all 3 and have on many occasions considered getting them out and trying to mod them to work to todays standards

Problems i had were the guide sensor on Think Tank sticking and missing the odd lap but it did seem reliable when it picked up the car passing. The click as a car passed was a sure way of knowing your lap had been counted.

This is one thing i could not figure out though. I am sure it said in my instructions that one the car had run out of fuel it would stop and the sound would cut from Soundtrack Track, after all they were linked together. But my car just continued to run as did the sound.

So i am interested did anyones car actually stop and cut the sound.

I agree we should have the modern equivalent.

shaunbmx
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes Shaun, I did get the Soundtrack/Fueltank combo working properly.

The correct functionality was not a cutting of power though ...

First, as your fuel was approaching empty, the fuel light would flash and your engine sound would be intermitent revs. Then as you hit empty you'd be restricted to absolute minimum power and a very low engine note. The wheels would still turn if you lifted the back end of the car. The supposed idea here was that you'd be able to limp back to the pits at a very slow speed. Unfortunately, scalextric didn't really judge the 'minimum' power very well, and gave us no way of adjusting it, consequently only the lightest car on a very straight, well cleaned track would move at all.

We got around it though (As we allways do) by just allowing a quick press of the refuel button to get you back to the pits before a proper fill up was allowed.
 

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Hi

I got everything to work as well ... (other than the timing issue .. which was not due to the micro-switch as far as I could tell. ... If memory serves, the chip problem was mentioned in one of the NSCC journals a long time ago ..) and I agree .. they looked great together all lined up at the side of track. They were better than anything else at the time ... Carrera had a computer .. but timed only to the tenth and sound plus fuel units as well.

My favorite lap counter and timer was Marklin's ... very reliable .. although I ultimately built a special relay unit for it. And it counted to the 100th second. The original set up required a magnet to be glued to the bottom of the car which inturn tripped a reed switch underneath the track. Mind you, I used Monogram track for everything .. including with the Scalextric units.. ... but the Marklin method always bothered me because that meant having a magnet on the bottom of the car and this seemed to change the car's handling and allowed it to go faster.
Okay ... so this was in the late 70s/early 80s .. before it became common to have magnets on the bottom of the cars to improve handling and speed ...

Sometimes the old dogs have to be shown the new tricks a couple of times .. although I am still not crazy about those magnets!!

all my best

Charles
 

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Hi All

I have a fuel tank i bought it only a couple of years ago, and as yet have not been able to get it to work, ti was boxed but had no instructions which is a real shame as the idea of Fuel running out seems really s cool thing to have and one step up to make the whole racing experience a bit more realistic.

Athrlyth
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
@ Athrlyth:

What power and control system are you trying to get it to work with? It will only work with 'original' power systems.

It won't work with a power system that incorporates braking or a direction switch unless you get an electronics genius (RichG) to modify it.

I found that getting the hand controller plugs seated properly in the bottom of the unit was quite tricky (VERY tight fit) and was the source of most problems.
 

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Hi Guys

All very interesting. I did wonder about putting together a collection of these early electronic, or mechanical in some cases Slot Car timers and fuel devices. I have box somewhere with some bought off ebay. I am sure some of these will be collectors items in the future.


How about a few pictures to remind us of what they all look like?

Has anyone got one of these?



Rich
 

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QUOTE (RichG @ 18 Oct 2006, 12:50) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Has anyone got one of these?
Two, still in use.... (not quite your tower, but useful on a 4 lane system)

Want some pictures?
 

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RiKo I have not got one but am about to get one. Do you know the size of the top of the display backboard, Width & Height, In particular the narrow width at the top? I am thinking of using it as a mount for my display
which is 7cm by 12cm.

Rich
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Here's the piccy's of the three boxes



THINK TANK: Program individual lane length (To calculate lap speed correctly). View Fastest Lap Speed/Time, Average Race Speed, Total Race Time, View in KPH or MPH, Run Practise Laps, Race Lap Limited or Time Limited. All in all a lot of functionality for a box that's 20yrs old!



FUEL TANK: You have a nifty fuel needle at the top which gradually goes down depending on how much you press the throttle (So you could conserve fuel!). On reaching low, the Fuel Warning light would flash and your car would stutter, on Empty, the light goes solid on, and your car has minimal power.



SOUND TRACK: Fanfare before race start countdown which was 3 red lights then green. Independent Engine reving sound on no throttle, Engine sound varied according to throttle setting, Skid sound if car lost contact with track momentarily, Crash sound if car lost contact with track for more than 1sec (ish).



As has been mentioned above, Fuel Tank and Sound Track could be linked together such that the effects of low/no fuel were reflected by the soundtrack.

All in all, a fantastic set of gadgets for their time.

Mine still work!

 

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Wow, I have to say they look amazing. Well ahead of their time. Did not realise they were a set. Have just dug out my box of bits and I have the Sound Track. They look better in the pictures than in the flesh.


Thanks fo the dimensions RIKO. it's going to be a bit too small my display. The height in particular is only 9cm v my display at 12cm. Oh well will just have to add to the collection.

Rich
 

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Also in the box found this. I guess this is the one Phil is refering to? Put some batteries in and it tells you the times.




I have never used it but although annoying the voice quality is good. We just need one for Digital.
 
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