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Hello!

Preparing for our annual new year's day races, i've started early this year.
It's a track built in the living room, so it has to be temporary - but we can race and have fun until the end of january. Needless to say i'm in the love of a good woman who likes to race as well, ergo blessed with a happy lovingly committed relationship ;-)

First the track plan:



The track is two lane digital. Track length is around 22 m1 / 72 feet. I built the track more or less like the track plan. I changed the Fleischmann R1-R1 hairpin in the carroussel to a smoother, wider R3-R1-R2 hairpin curve. Furthermore, some small alterations to improve the flow of the track.
The track system is a hybrid of vintage Fleischmann, combined with Ninco lane changers and pit lane, as well as Carrera lane changers which i've converted to 9 cm. gauge. All equipped with Scorpius Wireless lane brains.
The track plan is based on the available table space. On top of the living room table and some supporters i placed 4 slabs of mdf, roughly 4.8 m. x 1.6 m.
As always, the carroussel sticks out into our serre / small wintergarten room, totalling the size of the track table to 5.4 x 1.6 m.
Here's some images, which say more than words:




I wanted a smooth flowing track, with lots of oppurtunities to test the new digital Scorpius system and all the converted lane changers.
Plus, it's to be a Xmas holiday track: there has to be room for a certain Xmas stable building (interior decorating and scenery to be done by my daughter), a gauge 1 circumnavigating rail track and festive xmas lighting. Instead of a Xmas tree, we decided to set up a Xmas track ;-)
So the idea of the scenery is a happy xmas feeling, with less emphasis on exact scale or super realistic detailing. It's to be a fun track!


The stable is put in place, in the middle of the carroussel.


I've finished the table and the layout, no scenery yet.
To enable sliding, the track is surrounded by 1 cm. thick polystyrene sheet. It's a temporary track after all, ps sheets cost nothing and are easy to cut.
Effect of this is a wintery snowy landscape, ideal background for Xmas scenery.


Our cat loves the track, the cars, everything. I put some sleeping pillows on the table, hoping the cats will favour the pillows over the track itself.
With experiences from previous years, I made the viaduct strong enough to hold jumping / attacking cats, thus preventing damage or deformations to the track.


Zamba loves the SCX Bugatti...


As a pitlane, i introduced a petrol station. I used my vintage Carrera trackside buildings for this purpose.
With Scorpius RMS, we can race with fuel consumption / strategy, so a working pitlane is needed.


This vehicle seems to be transporting a wise man from the east. More on this subject in later posts, when my daughter has finished her stable decorations...


Here's some video footage of the first test run, after completing the basic layout.
Next step: building the circumnavigating railroad and shunting yard, lighting and scenery.
More to follow in the coming weeks...!

Merc
 

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Thnx guys :)

Yes it's a lot of fun this track! This night i was trying out the ghost cars, four of them on the track and me driving in between traffic - well i tried, until the cats came onto the stage... we enjoyed ourselves enormously :)
Somehow i always have this connection, between cats and slot cars... well, see for yourselves, hope you like it as we did!


Merc
 

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I do love the added extra dimension of the handicat system that you run.
Actually, they're remarkably well behaved. I was quite expecting to see some kitty carnage.

The track layout is a gem, as always.

Embs
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thnx Embs :)

It takes a lot of getting used to - i offer them the slotcars first, so they can smell and see it's friendly non-edible creatures. What's left is their reflexes and instinct, they somehow can't resist putting their claws on nearby passing fast moving bird-size objects. It's entertainment too - when i'm firing up a car, notably one with a high pitch engine/gear mesh sound, even if the cats are in the other room they rush in, attend their spectators pillows and start watching the car show :)

I have a certain memory about how they react on smoke-puffing whistling gauge 1 locos, more on that subject later...

Merc
 

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One petunia in a field of onions
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Mine used to join in play with HO cars when he was young. By the time I got back into slots in the larger scale OJ (the cat) was too old to be interested in them much when they were running on the floor. He did have an occasional half hearted swipe. Table tops were out of bounds to him, so he never took notice of the cars at all by the time the track was up off the floor.
 
G

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Fantastic, that's cheered me up.

The cats are wonderful, I like the bit where the cat's tail swings across the track you can tell he/she is ready for action.

Great track, have a Merry Christmas
 

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Great track!!! Its tempting me to go digital when I eventually get round to building one. Havent decided on a 4 lane analogue or 2 lane digital yet, supose it will depend on what space I will have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Gee thanks for all the comments guys & girl :)

Very stimulating and inspiring indeed, to make an effort and work on the track, do more scenery and get the gauge 1 trains going next weekend. My daughter is working on a nativity scene, so there won't be any Santa around, but instead of that three wise men from the east in an Indian tuc-tuc 3-wheeler taxi.

And Aston: the gas station and garage building next to it are vintage Carrera Universal trackside buildings. You could buy them in the '70s as building kits, sort of like the well known Scalextric kits. The Carrera collection consisted of a garage / workshop, a gas station, press tower, race control tower, the lot. Still in good shape and well available on auction sites (well in Holland and Germany at least).
There's a splendid website dedicated to these vintage trackside buildings, from a German guy who collects and sells them. If you want to know the url, just pm me.

I'll post more as soon as i've done more work on the track!

Merc
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hello Falkster, this digital racing system is Scorpius Wireless, you can read about it in the digital subforum.
When i made the video, i simply gave all the cars the same ID, put them all on the track and pressed the trigger of the controller :)

I wanted to race this evening, but i decided to replace one LC. I've swapped a Carrera R->L LC for a XLC in the main straight.
First for giving more overtaking opportunities, second for testing out all my recently Scorpius-sed LC's. (is that correct english? ehm.)

The Carrera LC's in particular are great for digital tracks, they provide the longest and smoothest lane changing one can buy in plastic track. Plus, after the arrival of Carrera 132 the old Pro-X LC's dropped in price dramatically. You can buy them new for around €10 and around €20 for XLC's.
However, Carrera gauge is 99 mm. compared to my Fleischmann's and Ninco's 90 mm.
On long straights you do need long LC's. To make use of them nevertheless, i experimented with two options:


1. is cutting up the Carrera LC, bringing it down to 90 mm. gauge. This turned out to be way easier than i feared. With a sharp knive, fine metal saw, steady hand and metal ruler you can convert it quite easily. You can even cut them down to Scalextric gauge if one wishes to have long smooth LC's on SSD.


Result is a great long LC on Ninco gauge. Replace the electronics for a Scorpius Lane Brain and off you go.
This can only be done with one directional L->R or R->L LC's. One cannot cut the length with XLC's.




2. What to do with Carrera XLC's? How to make good use of them? For this i used a Carrera chicane trackpiece, and cut it exactly where the slots narrow to 90 mm. The conversion from 90 to 99 mm. gauge is not a problem - i've tested it and you can drive over it full speed. The cars only get a slight push to the side, the smooth flowing chicane prevents deslotting. (well a standard scaley car did not deslot - a superfast NSR with a high rev motor could be a different story of course, but i cant's tell, don't own such).


This piece i converted to Scorpius and put it in its place this evening - it works fine! the cats kept checking on it after i finished the job...

Merc
 

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Heh, so true :)

Meanwhile, we've had the pleasure of racing the newyear's day races, yay!
It was great fun.
In the days before, i managed to build a gauge 1 railroad around the track. This to enhance the festive feeling, including an xmas tree and xmas lighting.


Here's the track plan, a simple circumnavigating railroad with a lower shunting yard in the middle of the race track. Nice close encounters between railtrack and road, which i like.

And here some images.









I do like the combination of cars and railtrack, i feel it's a great addition.
Filming from a slow moving train is also special, gives great images of the racing cars!
And above all, a puffing train blowing a horn gives a great xmas atmosphere to the track :)

A friend made a small movie of the track and all things in motion, with all in it: police cars, cats, chases... here it is for your viewing pleasure!


Merc
 
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