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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
EDIT: 1/10/10 progress update, see post 18.

Some of you may recall the scale model of my track I made while waiting for the components to arrive...



Well my Tomy Super Int'l set finally arrived and I got is set up on a door...



Then I got to cutting some risers from 2x4's so I could more accurately depict the elevation changes I was going for...



And now I finally have a decent setup on which to experiment with elevation changes...




You can see too that I've been adding to my car collection with a couple of MT's and a couple of my favorite Nascar drivers on 440x2's. I've got a couple of Parma 45's hiding out of view.

I plan on using reed switches and maybe Brauns timing software, plus making my own powered track section each with their own power (wall-warts for now) I also plan to wire the track up for reverse and brake, never knowing if that's a feature I might want in the future.

You can see the look I'm going for on my scale model, but the mock-up presents two problems I couldn't have predicted. First, part of the lowest track is completely hidden from view by some track in front of it (see picture above). I don't mind it so much, but the uninitiated could find it bothersome. I'm considering completely hiding the straight part of that track in a tunnel, but would like some other 'landscaping' ideas there. Secondly is that darn 6" radius turn. Neither my MT's nor my 440x2's handle it worth a darn and I bet the XT's I have coming won't either. The MT's simply deslot and go flying, the 440x2's handle it fine going up (which is in clockwise direction from the power terminal, and opposite of the way I want to run the track), but they usually spin out and sometimes deslot going down hill. My SG+'s of course handle it fine.

I appreciate and welcome any feedback or help I can get.
 

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I built this exact track myself before my Brystal came home to roost and it's a really fun layout, I did a couple of extra things on mine to make it a little bit better.

Instead of doing it on an 80" door frame, I built it onto a 3' x 8' sheet and added 15" straights to each straightaway section to give me just a bit more distance.

I also took some 1/4" plywood and laid my elevated turns on top of them, traced out the track sections, cut them out and put them in on top of the supports. This made the elevated sections as smooth as the flat parts.

As for the 6" turns, I had thought about making that one go out wider and then come back in and elevating it slightly so it doesn't collide with the other sections, as I had the same problems you are having, just about everything I had on the track wanted to come out in that corner.

Marty
 

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Tomy track simply doesnt have the same amount of magnetic downforce as tyco...My 440x2's that stick like glue on the tyco track spin out on even 9" turns at speed..
 

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Discussion Starter #4
martybauer31 said:
I also took some 1/4" plywood and laid my elevated turns on top of them, traced out the track sections, cut them out and put them in on top of the supports. This made the elevated sections as smooth as the flat parts...
Gonna do this exact thing myself, though not before I nail down my elevations and any changes to 6" curve.

Are there better magnets available for the 440x2's? I bought some nacho poly magnets for the MT's and am waiting for them to arrive.
 

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IMHO its too much track for the space.......Id allows for basically NO scenery.
Fun to drive for a while perhaps but this ones simply Not a great course to consider as Permanent.

Allowing some room for scenery EVEN at the cost of sacrificing track length a more satisfying permanent track...again, this is my opinion.

Becoming part of the scene as you drive makes the experience far more enjoyable.

If you plan to change your plan around every few months thats a whole nuther can o worms, then I'd say go for it.........BANKing would help on that tight radius.
TYCO makes Banked corners and with adapters you could fit in a TYCO banked in that really difficult area...............Keep the Shiny side up!! :)
 

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My experience years ago- I drew up countless layout ideas and narrowed down to a few I thought would be super cool. Once I assembled them and ran some laps I realized some drawbacks overlooked. Then I started randomly changing things around and letting my buddies race on it and give input of what they all liked as a group. That eventually dictated how the final layout would end up. I enjoy digging up those drawings once in a while to remember the "early days". :p

Try out different temp layouts for periods of time before doing anything permanent. ;)
 

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Also- I would recommend working on your driving skills before putting hotter magnets in your Tycos. Adding more downforce can lead to a snowball affect, whereas you will need better tires, a hotter arm, better electrical, a different controller, etc. A stock or Super Stock Tyco can be a lot of fun to race within their own class. Older Tyco Indy cars can make for some fast racing. The wider NASCAR body/pan chassis combo can be a hoot tradin' paint and learning how to corner with control.
:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
TGtycopro said:
IMHO its too much track for the space.......Id allows for basically NO scenery...Allowing some room for scenery EVEN at the cost of sacrificing track length a more satisfying permanent track...again, this is my opinion.
Opinions are what I'm looking for :) Though I will point out that only 45% of the door is covered with track, that still leaves 11 square feet of open space for scenery.

My idea of 'scenery' for this track are thing like detailed bridges just like you see on the highway, gravel run-offs in several of the corners, realistic signage along the roadway (sharp curve arrows, bridge abutment hash marks, road edge marker lines) plus detailed rock faces along the steep edges and green grass intersparced with rocks (with the stuff available from Woodland Scenics)
 

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I kinda like all the elevation changes. Nice track for the space as well. I don't really like alot of over/under on what I envision as the perfect track, but it definately looks like a fun plan to run on.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I went ahead and modified that darn 6" radius and opened it up to 9"...much faster and all my cars handle it well. I also put a sheet under the track to hide the risers and give me a better idea of what the landscaping may look like.

I really love the left half of the track with the large elevation differences, this half of the track I want to remain as is:


The right half is a different story. While I'm happy with the bigger turns, since they overlap this end looks kinda busy. Also when in real life do you find a curved section of road above another curved section of road (maybe an overpass)? And how do I landscape it to look realistic. Lastly I'm not real thrilled with the (lack of) elevation changes. It looks wimpy and crowded compared to the left half of the track.


Any more ideas for improvement for me?
 

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Sed,

I looks cool so far, really impressed with your model too! Only suggestion I have is use the biggest turns you can, as well as the lonest straights that fit. It's nice to see your progress as well...
 

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Sed,

One thing (of many) I liked about your scale model was that at first glance it looked like the front straight and the rear straight were on the same plane, and instead of building positive elevations, it looked like you were building negative elevations, and your track was digressing into a canyon or ravine. Part of this visualization was that your scale model did not include built-up mountains on the perimeter, but still, I thought it was a unique concept.

It might be an interested way to look at elevations changes. Instead of ‘which areas do I want to raise’, it would be ‘which areas do I want to lower’.

Start flat, and go down.

Hmmmm……long pause here…..thinking……

Ok.

I spent too much time thinking (and maybe one too many drinks).

I started wondering how I could landscape to a track to be like a …



maybe though.....
 

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Hi Sed, Scafs got a good eye. Must be from squinting at the ant farm. :p

Subgrade modeling creates monsterous depth when combined with subtle elevation changes such as you've created. There's really no reason not use the subgrade effect other than it involves some tricky table/benchwork work on occasion.

Regarding your landscaping; I recommend digging back and looking at the outrageously creative layouts in this forum. Also there seems to be a lot more model railroading publications on landscaping than slots. Troll some MR sites and check out your local hobby store for some booklets.

Eventually your head will explode from all the input, and you'll have to get started.

Good luck!

BH
 

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Nice!

Sed,
Would have to agree with Scaf. When I first saw the modeled concept, I thought the same as far as negative elevation. At least that's what me eyes were seeing until you look closely at the pic. Either way, looks like it will be a fun layout, just remember to keep posting pix as you progress through the build up. The good stuff and bad as well. Thanks, rr :thumbsup:
 

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I'm with the crowd...I had assumed you'd do the layout the same as your model...

Such as with three layers of two inch foam board... :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Crimnick said:
I'm with the crowd...I had assumed you'd do the layout the same as your model...

Such as with three layers of two inch foam board... :thumbsup:
Interesting...the layout is the exact same as the foam model. Perhaps the angle or color of the pic of the model makes it look a little different.

In my mind the layout goes up and down. That is the whole front straight is 3" high and going CCW it starts rising in the two corners and is 6" for the whole back straight. It goes back down to 3" at the 180 degree corner and from there heads down to 0". It does a short run at 0" before is starts climbing in the curve and is again at 3" for the entire 2nd back straight and two corners coming back into the front straight.

Maybe I'll change the elevations to make the front and back 6" and go for that 'valley' look.

Any ideas what I can do with the crowded right side of the track as mentioned above?
 

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sed6 said:
Interesting...the layout is the exact same as the foam model. Perhaps the angle or color of the pic of the model makes it look a little different.

In my mind the layout goes up and down. That is the whole front straight is 3" high and going CCW it starts rising in the two corners and is 6" for the whole back straight. It goes back down to 3" at the 180 degree corner and from there heads down to 0". It does a short run at 0" before is starts climbing in the curve and is again at 3" for the entire 2nd back straight and two corners coming back into the front straight.

Maybe I'll change the elevations to make the front and back 6" and go for that 'valley' look.

Any ideas what I can do with the crowded right side of the track as mentioned above?
No..that's not it...it's the way the terrain looks...

Your model looks like the track decends into a canyon or valley...

Your track terrain looks built up from the table...

The layout is the same...but the effect is quite different...
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I can't believe almost 3 yrs have passed since my first post on my track! Since then I've moved twice, gotten married once, and run my cars never!

I've made big leaps, but not much progress in the last two weeks since I set my track back up. First off I've got a new (old) laptop set up to run LapTimer 2000. I've been one of the lucky ones who've had zero problems with LT2K and reed switches. I love that program. I've posted pics below.

Also I've been experimenting with power supplies, sort of. In addition to the standard Aurora wall wart that was included with my TOMY Super International Raceway, I acquired a 1.5v-12v Radio Shack 300mAh power supply. It's a $15 wall wart and I've it's great to experiment with variable voltages on my track. Seeing how much change the voltage makes on the way my cars handle makes the Pyramid PS32Lab a must have soon item.

Also for giggles I hooked my track up to a 11.1v 2100mAh battery. It provides clean, pure DC up to 42 amps, wayyy more than anything I'll ever need. It provided the perfect volts to run my Super G+. Nice to know I can run on batteries if we ever loose power!

I also rigged up a CRUDE drivers station to experiment with variable powers and brakes. I can easily change the volts to the track from the 22v Aurora to the Radio Shack power supply. I can also easily turn the brakes on or off by disconnecting the red wire. I used the wiring setup to a) show myself a variable DC power supply is a great idea, and b) that a brake on/off would be a good idea too.

And let's not forget that my hobby room improved greatly since my last post. After two moves, I went from a 12x11 guest room to a 12x22 bonus room above the garage. You can see from the pics that a man and his hobbies dominate the space. God bless my supportive wife!


Here's my new laptop...





Here's the Radio Shack PS...



Amps (peak) my Super G+ draws... zero at rest, .42 amps while crusing and 1.46 amps when stalled...







-continued-
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Here's how I'm testing the reed switches...



My driver stations...







My new hobby room...

 

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Glad you got rolling again! :thumbsup:

All those supports remind me of this...




Its the Dallas High Five interchange.
Maybe you could color the props, add some graffiti, throw some dirt down, and call it done?

Rich
 
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