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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well now we've got a class for AutoArt 'supercars' - the performance of which is generally anything but. Wobbly gears, loose tyres and general graunchiness abound, so it's now become the club's only tuning class.

In fairness I've never had a problem with my original choice - the Porsche 997 Carrera. It's pretty and, with a load of weight stuffed in the nose, has a very nice habit of drifting gently through the corners. Here's the old original:



With a decent amount of acceleration my 997 is one of the fastest 'stock' cars (mag removed) at the club, but because of chronic unreliability we can now tune our AutoArts. Tyres, hubs, axles, gears and pinions are free - although motor, guide and chassis must remain as standard. Given the yellow peril's rear-mounted motor she's not going to be able to live with more conventional arrangements, once they've been tweaked, but I wanted to stay with Porsche and so got a traditional mid-mounted sidewinder within the rather lovely 996 GT3R:



And so to a bit of tuning...

First off I've removed the retaining spring on the front axle which pushes it down towards the track. I hate front-end deslots with a passion, and increasingly find that highly detailed slot cars are build as shelf queens with no thought for whether or not the front wheels will lever the guide out of the slot. I've also unscrewed the magnet and fitted wheels and axles from the Scalextric Porsche GT3, which are wider and hopefully will give a bit more grip than drift:



Eagle-eyed viewers will notice that the rear tyres are different. I've gone for Ortmanns, as Scaley typically doesn't do a great compound for non-mag running.

Everything sits together reasonably well but there's a hefty amount of slop in the rear axle now - about 4mm worth! I've ordered some shims but also decided to go for a Slot.It axle and gears - 12 tooth pinion and 36 tooth crown. I think it's about the best balance in ratios for our track.

The bits should arrive in time for next week, when I make a belated debut in the class. It's hardly the biggest tuning job in the world but hopefully, once run in and with a bit of weight behind the guide, will be able to keep pace with the Gallardoa, Murcielagos and Koenigseggs.

I'll let you know!
 

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Nobby Berkshire
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It's best not to 'tune' an AutoArt slotcar. Instead, it's better to buy another manufacturer's car. That way, you don't encourage folks to waste their hard earned cash on a good looking lame duck.

Quack
 

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it seems to me that autoart is a funny choice to have as a tuneing class. by the time youve bought all the bits to make it run decently youd be better off buying a slot it, and just be allowed to change rear tyres and lead if needed. youd have much closer and faster raceing for about the same outlay. the best driver not the best tuner would head the pack, it would make it more exciting. john
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
All very fair points. But this is just one out of 50+ classes - combination of 'own car' and 'club car' - currently on the roster, and there are some very good, close-matched and entertaining classes in the mix.

The plus side is that with new AA cars available for a tenner or less, you can upgrade all the relevant parts and still have change from 30 quid. The downside is, like any tuning class, it's all about what you've put in the car.
 

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Hi,
Would be interested to here what mods you and club members do. I have an Autoart Evo and had no problems with it (apart from the shallow guide deslotting) while I was using it on Ninco track. Now I'm using a much smoother track I can see what people mean about the tyres, getting no grip at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well she'll get her first run tomorrow.

Unfortunately Pendle was out of stock for 11-tooth sidewinder pinions, so the Slot.It gears and axles will have to wait. As it is she'll make her debut with the Scalextric Porsche GT3R axle shimmed to cut out the 4mm or so of slop in the chassis and the standard AutoArt pinion.

I'll pop a pic of this 'setup' up here when completed and tested.
 

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...and the verdict is?

Wrong gears?
Tail happy?
etc..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'll find out in about an hour!

Not glueing anything on at the moment so may well find wheels and tyres scattered to the four winds, but will complete definitive setup once the Slot.It parts arrive. Meanwhile here's the interim spec:



Axle shimmed so no play left now and a decent bit of weight up front. When the sharper ratios are in I might put a dab of weight at the back of both sills but hopefully the Ortmanns will hook up OK on Ninco track...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well it wasn't too bad. The best thing was being able to run for two laps door-to-door with the Koenigsegg that's fully loaded with Slot.It goodies.

The downside was too much grip from the Ortmanns on Ninco track. The car handles like it's got a magnet in there, except it hasn't, which means that everything's fine and lovely until the tyres dig in rather than slide. A third and three fourth places were the result (five points from a possible 16). Parked it very neatly on the outside of Turn 1 having barrel rolled across all three other lanes and their incumbents, which was rather special.

Funnily enough I had the same problem a few years back with the old Scalextric C125 Porsche 911. I put Ortmanns on to replace the dried-up and cracked original tyres and after truing and glueing it refused to enter a corner at racing speed without rolling past the apex, where before it had done a delicious bit of tail-wagging and that was that.

For now I'm going to round off the outer walls of the tyres and be a bit more circumspect on corner entry until I've got a proper 3:0 ratio in place and some braking effect might happen (we run without brakes).

All in all, however, I'm encouraged.
 

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"Some people speak because they have something to say, others speak because they have to say something."

QUOTE (Screwneck @ 28 Apr 2012, 01:45) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>It's best not to 'tune' an AutoArt slotcar. Instead, it's better to buy another manufacturer's car. That way, you don't encourage folks to waste their hard earned cash on a good looking lame duck.

Quack


This adds nothing to the discussion. The class is "already' established. It cannot be better to buy another manufacturer as then he can't race.

QUOTE (martini917k @ 28 Apr 2012, 03:23) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I believe "tuning" an AutoArt car may result in a sound similar to atonal dog strangling

Yet another pointless reply. Your opinion of AutoArt has nothing to do with the OP's question.

QUOTE (stoner @ 30 Apr 2012, 19:49) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>it seems to me that autoart is a funny choice to have as a tuneing class. by the time youve bought all the bits to make it run decently youd be better off buying a slot it, and just be allowed to change rear tyres and lead if needed. youd have much closer and faster raceing for about the same outlay. the best driver not the best tuner would head the pack, it would make it more exciting. john

Again the same. It is an AutoArt class. Maybe money is not an issue and maybe the challenge is the tuning not the driving. I happen to think slot.it cars are boring but what has that got to do with anything.

Having already PM'ed my tuning thoughts to the OP. They may not be valid but that is his decision.

An AutoArt class is an inspired choice arrived at by someone with independent thinking or someone who has a store full of unsold AutoArt.
Quite a technical challenge and involves some skill and not simply an on-line parts order.

AutoArt class is like racing Citroen 2CV, Skoda 120/130, NSU TTS sure a Caterham would be quicker but that is not an issue. Maybe better analogy it is like the guy in the VW Cup who races a van, maybe the point is to get the most out of and have fun with something not know for being quick.

Added to that they (AutoArt) race without brakes.
I can hear the tongue clicking already. So how to improve braking when there is no electrical braking allowed? Adding weight would seem counter intuitive. How to change ones driving skill or equipment to do this? Complex adjustable controllers maybe of limited use?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
QUOTE (Abarth Mike @ 4 May 2012, 04:01) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>An AutoArt class is an inspired choice arrived at by someone with independent thinking or someone who has a store full of unsold AutoArt.
Quite a technical challenge and involves some skill and not simply an on-line parts order.

I do believe the culprit who put this class forward might have had an interest! That said, there are precious few RTR cars available for less than 10 quid. Originally they were to be run 'stock' but having all the usual AutoArt frailties this became impossible for a lot of people, requiring aftermarket parts to make them go. This in turn caused a bit of umbrage, so it was thrown open.

QUOTE (Abarth Mike @ 4 May 2012, 04:01) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Added to that they (AutoArt) race without brakes.
I can hear the tongue clicking already. So how to improve braking when there is no electrical braking allowed? Adding weight would seem counter intuitive. How to change ones driving skill or equipment to do this? Complex adjustable controllers maybe of limited use?

We do have brakes on the track, but they remain firmly switched off in all but one or two classes. It's a religious issue, I believe.

"If the Lord intended our slot cars to have brakes, then He would have bally well made sure that they were on from the outset." (Revelations: 1/32)."

There will be a renewed debate on this matter between the People's Front of Judea and the Judean People's Front at our forthcoming AGM, but for now we'll keep coasting at unabated speed towards our destiny.

I keep throwing weight in my cars in the vain hope of getting the CofG in tune with my ever-optimistic cornering methods. Sometimes it works. Other times it merely accelerates the rate of roll.

Complex adjustable controllers are always of limited use in my case - however their principal function is winding up one's competitors even when most of the functions are disabled by technology that Isambard Kingdom Brunel would have thought rather dated.

Thanks for all thoughts and comments, if nothing else tuning an AutoArt provides decent entertainment!
 

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QUOTE (driver#8 @ 4 May 2012, 09:57) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>"If the Lord intended our slot cars to have brakes, then He would have bally well made sure that they were on from the outset." (Revelations: 1/32)."

There is a belief that brakes are a relatively new invention, but that is not so. The 1960s Scaley Race Tuned throttles had brakes. The first cooking version of Scaley controller with a finger trigger rather than a thumb push also had brakes. For some reason they removed that in later versions.

I'm sure that other makes also had brakes. The early MRRC controllers? The Russkit ones from the 1960s definitely had brakes.

When were the earliest brakes? 1950s? Rail racing?
 

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QUOTE (driver#8 @ 4 May 2012, 16:57) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>between the People's Front of Judea and the Judean People's Front


Than you for that my sides hurt
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Got some serious laps in last week when only four people turned up for club cars night and, although I managed to snap the rear spoiler, got a lot more used to running the car on the big track as we made it a test session. It was still digging in (hence spoiler) but that was the only obvious problem.

This week I trued the tyres again and rounded off the outside edges. Boom! Suddenly we've got a real racer on our hands. Best lap was a 11.8 seconds, being much more forgiving on corner entry and able to get the power on much sooner. It's quite light and with so much grip in the tyres this AutoArt has developed a 'Ninco hop' but it's tolerable and now I'm reasonably happy with the setup I'll glue everything in place.

On our brakeless track that's about half a second faster than a Slot.It Porsche 956 with the magnet out and no weight. Three wins out of four races - inexplicably stayed on the throttle too long on the run up to the hairpin in the other race when a good distance clear.

The pristine white bodywork is now looking like a 24 hour racer after the chequered flag thanks to the volume of rubber and grime that's built up in 35 laps of racing! Weathered doesn't begin to describe it.

Not bad for just snapping in Scalextric hubs, axles and gear with the original pinion! I might keep the Slot.It parts for a rainy day.
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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Bravo and congratulations. I know it's not everyone's cup of tea, but I really like the fact that your AutoArt class tests tuning abilities. Seems to me anyone can grab a Slot.it or NSR and bang out reasonably fast laps without too much strife.

Even better that to date you've achieved it without adding in high-end parts.

You've restored my faith that slotting is not about buying the fastest car and throwing money at it to get it to go faster.

Embs
 

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I liked this thread so I grabbed an Autoart GT3 for 14 quid - my first Autoart car. The chassis looked good. Plenty of room. Bushes for the front axle. Sweet.

I wish now that I'd tried it with the original pionion / gears but got ahead of myself and pulled a Slotting Plus 7.5mm pinion and a Slot It 18mm 36T gear out of the parts bin. I cleaned up excess flashing off all the wheels, glued and trued the fronts and put some NSR ultragrips on the back end. I like lots of body float so I shaved the chassis perimeter and drilled out the chassis body post holes. I don't like lights so I stripped the lighting rig and got rid of all the resistors on the motor. I added weight and put a collar around the guide shaft to stop vertical movement. This guide mod effectively dropped the front end 2-3mm.



As you see the collar is just brass tube cut to size. I used a piece that fit easily over the guide shaft, then squeezed one end with pliers until the I got exact amount of guide movement I was after. Try it. It works.



I set the front ride height using a set up block - making sure the guide was as deep into the slot as possible - and glued the front bushes in place. I glued the rear bushes and motor in too. And I got rid of the self centering guide spring.

On the track this set up was surprisingly good. On my 95' wood track it was lapping in 7.8s - not fast but not shabby - but the car was stable in the corners, very hard to deslot and obviously had more in it. I thought the body rock was the issue so I shaved off the 'cups' at the top of the chassis posts and replaced the screws with thinner ones.



That smoothed that car out and it laps in 7.5s now. On my track anything that gets into the 6sec bracket is quick - so 7.5s is a respectable time - especially for a car with a narrow chassis and full, detailed interior. Put another way, this Autoart car with a 18k motor is just off the pace of a Slot It car running an orange endbell.

I was pretty happy. I'd avoided this brand - but I can now see more Autoart cars in my future.

Mac
 

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after reading all the replies, i,ve done a U turn. brilliant idea, the tuners can tune and the drivers drive. should make for some close, fun raceing, without breaking the bank. i,m a fair tuner but a carp driver, whereas someones a brilliant driver but only a so so tuner. i was so wrong thinking it would be a waste of time, well done that man [who came up with the idea] good luck with your tuneing and driveing john
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Mac - that's some fairly heroic chiselwork been going on there!

Stoner - just enjoy them any way you like.

Last race of the season for Mighty White next week. Definitely the most fidgety car I've got but when I've got my brain in gear she's still a winner. The original pinion is about to grenade itself, though, so will go ahead with the Slot.It cog transplant before next season.

The moral of the story is: AutoArts can be fun and reasonably fast. In their own 'special' way!
 

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QUOTE (driver#8 @ 20 Jun 2012, 03:39) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Stoner - just enjoy them any way you like.
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The moral of the story is: AutoArts can be fun and reasonably fast. In their own 'special' way!
Fully agreed!

And call me a masochist for what I did (and continue to do) with mine, but...

I have actually gone so far as to race an almost-stock Alfa GTAm in two of our race classes: front engine and TransAm. This on wood, no magnet and a technical track (Luf's [Oldslotracer] Targa).

Modifications consist of shimming the guide to get the front wheels to just touch the track, gluing the motor, urethane tyres glued and trued and making sure I get a bit of body float. Also added some lead low down.

Result? A blast really in TransAm: a B class sedan that chews up the flock of Scaley Camaros and Mustangs on the straight (not that Luf's tracks ever have much of those...) but cannot quite compete on the corners (and there are always lots of those on Luf's tracks!). So not quite competitive against top class competition but I can actually beat a lot of people running the class-standard Scaleys. Not bad I thought for such a maligned car.

Front engine result is similar: we have a bunch of very hot, highly modified front engine cars in the group: the Alfa is hopelessly outclassed against these. But once again: it can more than hold its own against unmodified cars.

I still love my pretty little Alfa!
 
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