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I have recently returned to the hobby after 15 plus years being away. Can you guys please explain to me the differences in performance between HO cars? I have sets that came with the SG+ cars. I used to have magnatraction and T-Jets many years back. How do all the different cars stack up against each other as far as speed is concerned? It would put a lot of things into perspective for me when reading a lot of things you guys are posting.
 

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I too have come back from a long hiatus so to speak... I last raced in 1989 in Denver at a friends track and the Tyco 440X2's were the Rage... Most of us laughed at the slowcars (pancake motors) because we wanted faster... (insert Tim Allen here MORE POWER... argh, argh, argh... )

But having returned in January 2009 (nearly 20 years later) to the races and a Club of racers, I have found that the hobby has for lack of a better phrase grown somewhat and has splintered off into many groups. Because of this splintering, I believe we are having some trouble keeping in the mainstream as a hobby because there are too many splintered groups. Perhaps, that is what keeps it alive...Choices to appeal to larger audiences... who knows. I certainly dont. Surely there will be several bombastic opinions coming soon to a Forum board near you. :drunk:

You have the car types broken down into two areas mainly... Pancake Motor cars and Inline Motor Cars.

The pancakes by and large are the slowest group between the two and have (appears to me) a much larger following. Quite possibly because of the base age of the group as a whole. ( us older folks tend not to have a PSP or DS stuck in our faces 24/7 and can have a meaningful conversations without the use of l33t speak and Text Messaging... sorry had to say it... lol) Many of us remember the fun as kids and a good deal of those folks experience some form of nostalgia with the pancake motors. I will also say that they are much more technical to tune up to make a "competitive" car as well. I suspect this is another reason that pancakes are very popular.

Of the Pancake Motors, we find several nationally recognized groups that have rules and similarly there are splinter groups of them that make "subtle" changes in their rules to allow for some such change that typically is less important to the overall car (ie, does the car need a back window or not, or what is the weight of the car, can you balance and true the arm or just balance it...etc.) By and large hearing the Term "Fray Car" means you have a SuperStock version of a Tjet. There are many nuances of these cars but basically (Im certain there will be plenty out there that will correct me as soon as they read this), It has a 1:75-87 scale body and a 1:64 wheel width... they look kind of goofy because the tires stick way out but are a fantastic blast to drive. There are many other clubs and classes but by and large, they are specific to their club and groups. There are those that drive these exclusively and have nothing to do with Inlines... Im certain Im OVERSIMPLIFYING this some but I dont want to aggravate too many drivers here...lol

The inlines have been around for a VERY long time as well. Like I said the Tyco 440X2 was king in the mid/late eighties when I left the hobby but even back then, there were a few "well known" parts builders out there for the competitive driver that wanted only the best. Aside from the cars you get when you buy your track, as I understand it, 3 basic car companies still stand out. Wizzard, Slottech, BSRT come to mind. All three making very good cars based around the inline motor and traction magnets style. Two of them you will recognize immediately from the store-bought chassis they are based on. Slottech most reminds me of the 440X2 with super modifications. BSRT's line mostly mirrors the SuperG+ in my mind and Wizzard Storms seem to be different enough to almost appear as a hybrid. These inline drivers have several classes as well from box stock to Unlimited. They are undoubtedly the fastest of the cars in HO and also sort of crazed in their own way. One thing I believe is that the sacrifice for this type of racing is Modeling. They replace the "hardbodies" with lexan and with it goes the detail of the body...some even look like blobs. :tongue: They are Very fun to drive though keeping your eye on them is a little tough for me... there are those that drive these exclusively and have nothing to do with Pancakes... and vice versa...

Many competitive drivers I know usually spend anywhere from 50-135 on a Tjet that is raceworthy if you are starting from nothing... At least in Fray style cars. You can get them prebuilt from a couple of vendors for 75-115 depending on the builder.

Costs on inlines range 2.49 for a repop of the 440X2 appearing chassis all the way past 200.00 to even "call for price" pricing... (usually means you dont want to know in the first place...lol) Superstocks go for around 50-100 and Modifieds go for around 150 and anything above that is pure speculation as I have never bought a Restricted Open car or Unlimited (this is a "call for pricing" car... lol).

There are a few clubs out there that have several classes both inline and pancake and drive both. Ours is one such club. But even in those you will find drivers that are concerned not about the racing inasmuch as the type of racing that is important. They will only show up for Pancake or Inline but not both. It happens but it's why there is a choice... gives the club a chance to offer something for everyone and appeal to the largest audience.

Now there are several types of race tracks... You have Ovals, Road Courses, Drag Strips, and Model raceways (tracks with lots of scenery where more emphasis on modeling and less on racing) Probably more but I am drawing a blank.

These tracks come in all shapes and sizes and there are the sectional, routed and solid surface tracks. They are varied in costs and usually go up exponentially based on the quality of the track and ease of installation. Anyone who has put together a sectional and made it work well knows how much effort it can be as opposed to a routed. There are pro's and con's to each but many of those concern money and maintenance.

You also have the ongoing epic battle between the Drag racers. Among them are the battles between the Drag racers that want to relive the 60's and go all out on modeling moreso than "the fastest car wins" ideology and then there are the Drag racers that dont care about the looks of the body but the RACE is the thing. Fortunately, there are enough drivers from all schools of thought to complete a race now and again and it's all in good fun. They often drive both Pancake and Inlines... In some cases they do "proxy" races where you build your car and mail it to the race and someone at the race will race your car. However, all the drivers physically at the race cannot enter a car... There are a million ways to set up the rules.. or as many ways as we can come up with ideas.

As you no doubt have seen on here we are a varied bunch of folks that love our hobby but it has morphed WAY beyond what it was originally intended. I believe it has become so varied, we have gone beyond what many manufacturers are willing to accomodate and see us as a losing business proposition so in an effort to keep the hobby alive, many of us go out of our way to do business with vendors to support their efforts and some of us have even become vendors and manufacturers to keep the hobby alive.

So as you can see, the first thing I would/did do is get with your local club if you have one or find one and try to setup something that will appeal to both you and the group and then get together as often as possible and Race, Have fun, Make a few friends and talk smack about the races... Share building tips with everyone focusing on driving skills more and "fastest car" less as you will quickly find that if you are the only one with the fast car, you will soon be driving alone.

It's very rewarding and I have had the time of my hobbying life in the last year and can only wonder of the fun yet to happen.

If I have offended anyone reading, then I apologize. Understand this is from a single point of view and my experiences with attending 3 National Level Races (losing miserably in all of them and still had a BLAST) and about 15 club races in the last year.

This opinion is not sanctioned nor sponsored in anyway by anyone either real or imagined.

Sorry this came out like a manifesto... I really meant to answer your question and as you can see, there are so many variables, that I believe you could write an entire book on the evolution of the HO scale slot car...lol Oh yeah, there are a couple of books out there... Thanks for reading this far if you did...

Dan
 

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Can you guys please explain to me the differences in performance between HO cars? I have sets that came with the SG+ cars.
From what little I have noticed in running Life like nascars, SG+ , SRT, and Mega G's is the magnet grip.

The more the magnetic force the more powerful the motor needs to be to have more speed .

Mega G's are the latest from AFX and have the most down force and therefore will stick to the track better,
I believe the next (from the ones I have used from the list above) is the SRT's
then the SG+, Then the life like have hardly any magnetic traction at all.

Maybe this will help a little , I'm a newbie to the world of SLOT CARS....
 

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If you are interested in the finest high performance HO slot cars.
It's the BSRT G3R in any configuration.

I would beg to differ but it's no secret which one you run :beatdeadhorse:, It's your opinion and your entitled to it... though I sure have beaten many of them with a Wizzard Storm and have beaten Wizzard Storms with Slottech's and have lost with a Slottech to Wizzard Storms etc...... I guess it depends on driving style and setup and track and parts used...lol

To keep this vendor neutral lets do it this way :D, of the 3 performance inlines available... (in alphabetical order)

BSRT G3R's
http://scaleauto.com/bsrt/g3_cars.htm

Slottech (warning... the front page of this site is probably more than you want to see if you are easily morally offended.. :cool: Im sure it's all in fun)
http://slottech.net/default.aspx

Wizzard Performance HO
http://www.wizzardho.com/

All of them will provide you service and parts and can make a fine racer.

Again, it depends on the parts lifeline your club has with part manufacturers and vendors for surely you cannot get much of this at the hobby shops.

Thanks
Dan
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys for the input. Shipsgunner, your posts were very informative. Thanks again. Happy New Year All!!
 

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From what little I have noticed in running Life like nascars, SG+ , SRT, and Mega G's is the magnet grip....Mega G's are the latest from AFX and have the most down force and therefore will stick to the track better,Then the life like have hardly any magnetic traction at all.
The lifelike are very different depending on the chassis you run. The M chassis and the T chassis vary and I have seen many clubs run Oval/Nascar style races using them with much success. YMMV I suspect but I have run one with NEO dots on it for traction magnets and it holds as good as any but again because of the magnet type it employs, it is in a class by itself... similar to the Mega-G

The Mega-G's are a fine car but I believe them to be in a class by themselves as they have poly motor magnets. Most of the Clubs Im familiar with dont accept poly motor magnets unless you are in RO or Unlimited classes.

I noticed in spring last year that New Jersey Hobby had a race series with just "box stock" Mega-G's and it looked like a wonderful race experience but if you can only race it against other stock Mega-G's then you are racing more of an IROC type race as there are VERY few aftermarket parts for them at this time.

I have heard many discussions about magnets off and on over the last year... some good and some bad but the basic premise is that the polys are significantly cheaper to produce on a mass scale since they dont require a Kiln to bake them at a few thousand degrees and because the polys aren't "cooked" like ceramics they are they are simpler to get made to a specific Gauss/size dimension standards. However, some manufacturers will charge more for them as they can be much stronger than ceramics... Many Race clubs are just waiting on the MFRS to finally decide as a group which magnets they are going to produce. Since Dash has come out with ceramic magnets on an "EPIC PROPORTION", I find it difficult to believe that ceramics are hard to get, but Im no manufacturer, (however, I do play one on T.V. :thumbsup:) ... So until the mfrs have made up their minds on the new standard if there is to be one, I suspect that the Mega-G will remain in a class by itself.

By the way, I like the Mega-G's because they have a longer wheelbase than the normal HO car, and fit the hotwheels wheelbase cars. You will be happy if you like doing diecast custom building. They are also very smooth running and reliable as far as I can tell. The only issue I could find was the brush system... they look to me to be very similar to the venerable G-Plus. Not very easy for my big hands to put in without shooting the brush across the room... lol Good news is that you might be able to install a brush tube from one of the aftermarket car manufacturers...:freak:

If you are looking for a Race Club experience, my advice still stands. Go to the club and see what they are racing... nothing sucks more than have 5-10 cars of what you think are good only to get your eyes opened to the fact that you have nothing to race with them. Get into a club and race to your heart's content. You might find as I have that it's the race and not the car type you have that is the real key. Most guys will race a LAWN TRACTOR if that is all you have to race with... wait, we have one of those races in our city on an annual basis...:cool: go figure.

Thanks
Dan
 

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I was reliably informed BSRT were going to produce hop-up parts for the Mega-G, and I assumed that meant adjustable brushes. Not heard anything in ages though.

Small, what would you say my agenda is then? Apart from disliking the fact we have racers out there who will go to bat for their chosen manufacturer, regardless of the facts, and racers who will go to bat on those occasions they can't prevent multi-chassis racing and their chosen one gets it's arse handed to it.
 

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I was reliably informed BSRT were going to produce hop-up parts for the Mega-G, and I assumed that meant adjustable brushes. Not heard anything in ages though.

Small, what would you say my agenda is then? Apart from disliking the fact we have racers out there who will go to bat for their chosen manufacturer, regardless of the facts, and racers who will go to bat on those occasions they can't prevent multi-chassis racing and their chosen one gets it's arse handed to it.
Perhaps it's why BSRT is wanting Poly's to become standard or "allowable" in the Stock, S/S and Modified Classes. Wont get much sales if there are no racers of that car because of class issues. I wouldn't mfr anything unless its a widely accepted standard. In the defense of BSRT, they will probably not make a decision until the POLY/CERAMIC motor issue is resolved. Very interesting though.

Good dialogue Monty.

Thanks
Dan
 

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The whole magnet of the month stuff just kills the hobby doesn't it. Nobody knows quite what to do, except be cynical and expect the whole playing field to change again down the line.

Even when you take the magnets out and go brass, another pissing contest started - it is just the way things are with the big three and their concubines :)

I must admit to being suprised that BSRT would make parts for the Mega-G when they have the G3 in their stable, but I hope somebody does. Adjustable brushes, stronger (and flush) traction magnets and so on.
 

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I hesitate to get involved with these discussions, but I guess once a year on a limited basis is tolerable. Instead of getting drawn down into the usual highly polarizing magnet debates, I suggest we look at solutions rather than dwelling on the problems.

Every potential solution to the magnet issue comes down to one simple question:

Do you/your club/your organization/your basement racing clan want to run race classes that allow cars and parts from any manufacturer to compete head-to-head in the same race classes?

That's the 1:64 million dollar question from which all answers emanate.

1) If the answer is "no" then you can run any single brand and type of car you want in as many race classes as you desire. When the answer is "no" you are simply saying that brand becomes part of the definition of the "class" itself. There's nothing inherently right or wrong with this approach, you can still run every single brand and type of car within the brands that you choose to run, but within each "class" the formula is always the same:

class = brand + type

There are several variations on this "brand dependent class" theme, both within brand independent racing organizations as well as brand-captive, or brand dependent, racing organizations.

2) If the answer is "yes" then you absolutely must come up with a rules-based class definition that all brands must adhere to. This is the harder way to go but if you want any manufacturer's cars and parts competing head-to-head you/your club/your organization/your basement racing clan must go the extra mile and come up with a workable way to do this with the cooperation of all manufacturers. The way you do this is with rules and standards. But you can't come up with rules and standards in a vacuum so you must give consideration for the practical and pragmatic limitations on the manufacturers. This is a tough job and requires someone acting as benevolent dictator on behalf of the racers. It is doable, and when it works it breeds a level of competitiveness that makes for very exciting scale racing that mimics the best of what you see in the 1:1 scale. But it's always a tenuous situation because of the potential for power struggles between the "benevolent dictator" acting on behalf of the racers and the manufacturers. But the formula is simple:

class = any brand + rules based type

Like the previous model, there are several variations on this brand-independent model, usually in terms of restrictions within brands to keep the class definition within desired performance parameters and ways to deal with parts churn. Also, some organizations have a split model, with some classes being brand-centric (e.g. GJets) and others being brand-independent (e.g. ceramic SS). It always comes down to what you/your club/your organization/your basement racing clan want to do and how much time, money, and effort you want to invest in supporting your racing program.

There is no universally right or universally wrong way to go.

As far as new compression molded magnets are concerned, I think we could get the brand-independent model to work if and only if the racing organizations could impose standards and compliance on the manufacturers for specific grades of molded magnets. For example, if there were say a "red book" standard for a ceramic grade molded polymer magnet that all manufacturers had to comply with, and the standard included a visual indicator like a molded-in color (like red) then it would be a good first step in the right direction. The "red book" standard would specify the gauss range for the specific magnet type and the racing organizations would do periodic sampling across all brands to ensure compliance.

Could individual racers cheat and override the visual indicators? Sure, but the standards are only there to ensure standard compliance from the manufacturers and to provide buyer assurance that they are using legal parts. It's not within the realm of the manufacturers to provide safeguards beyond what are specified in the standard. Cheaters are sad and pathetic low-lifes and are best dealt with by their peers. Flogging, caning, sensory deprivation, and vacation time in Gitmo are some possible options that their peers may want to impose. Whatever works for you/your club/your organization/your basement racing clan is the way to go.

There are answers to the questions and solutions to the problems, but all of them require a high degree of cooperation, mutual respect, and mutual consideration at all levels. Competition is healthy. Pitting racer against racer along lines that are not directly related to racing competition is cancerous. More so than anything, everyone must remain committed to sustaining and growing the interest level, excitement, and participation in the hobby as a whole while allowing manufacturers to be both innovative and profitable.
 

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A class post, as always 'too.
Ditto...lol

Our club allows all of the "big 3".... although some parts are easier than others to get because we have parts at the race...

There is something to be said with being able to buy parts at the race vice waiting on the mail or meeting minimum purchase requiements to get an order fulfilled... Though some of us do both. :)

I wish it were all black and white but then that would be boring...lol

Thanks
Dan
 
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