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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Howdy all! This will be a progress thread.

Just to keep it all in one place, here's whats gone before.


http://www.hobbytalk.com/bbs1/showthread.php?t=354391

Layout Thoughts

Anyway, a friend that needed a hand-up stayed with us for a couple of months, and the impending slot cave ended up being her bedroom. Thank God that she moved out by the agreed upon time....I've seen so many of those end very badly. This one didn't, and now I have my space!

So I took my 15 yr old stepson to play slot cars one night and it turned out, much to my surprise, that he really dug it. (he's from the X Box generation and I just figured he wouldn't like it.) He's now become a regular...and has been using those xbox reflexes to beat my ass on the track. :eek:

So when I asked him if he wanted to turn my slot track project into "our" slot track project....well, he was on that like white on rice.

So, we started yesterday.

Basically, were following Greg Braun's table building advice, except I'm using OSB for the tabletop and framing it in 1x4. Other difference is that I'm building it with the idea of portability. I'm a renter, and I think its smarter to assume you might have to move it at some point. So it'll break into two 4 x 6 halves. (Tabletop is 4 x 12.)

So, not much to report at this point. We're doing it a little at a time, an hour here and an hour there. No real hurry, as slot racing with my little group comes to an end during 1:1 race season at our speedway. So I have till Sept to have it "race" ready.


So we start with a pile of wood.


That's m'boy


And our helper. Funny...if an airplane flies over, or a train goes by 5 miles away, he hides in the bathtub. Fire up a power drill and he takes a nap right under the workbench. :rolleyes:


And that's the first half of the benchwork done.

Cost thus far: (assuming regular price @ Home Depot or whatever)
2 x 4x8 OSP boards cut $14.00
8 x 8' 1x4s ($1.75 ea) $14.00 (free for me cuz I found some discarded)
Box of 100 screws $5.00
2 x 10' 2x4s for the legs $7.00

Subtotal $40.00
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Alright, so we had a chance to work on it last night. Got the other half of the table built, and we put it together.

At the moment it looks like a table for midgets, but once the casters are on the bottom of the legs, it'll be just the right height. The legs are just sorta tacked in there right at the moment just to see how it looks.

 

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Looking good so far:thumbsup: and good to see your stepson enjoying this wonderful hobby over video games.
Im going to be redoing my table and track so this will come in handy, thanks! I built mine in a hurry to get my shop open and it shows.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, its been an interesting day. My table still under construction, its been laying top side down on the floor in the basement.

I go to work this morning and come home just to find that the dog were boarding for the next month has decided that my upside down table looks a lot like a litter box for dogs.

I'm not sure whether to laugh or grab a shotgun.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Alrighty, so I just sorta started thinking about how I had all this time on my hands and was slowly building up my layout, and realized that except for a couple of questions asked, I haven't really been updating.

So the table got built back in the late spring, out of OSB board, 1x4s and a few 2x4s for legs.

I got some new track pieces, as my old track was built on a 3.5 by 8, and I've gone to 4 x 12. Got the new pieces, painted them up, gave them the "slow, easy and thorough" paint-off-the-rails treatment. Laid them out and came up with something like this.



I know there's some that like a little more complexity in a slot layout, but frankly, I like simple, and considering this "circuit de Shadow" will see its share of young kids, I figured simpler was better.

I ran a few cars around on it and I like it a lot. You got your high speed 15/18s on either end, a nice long straight, couple of switchbacks to keep you paying attention, and one 9/12 inch right/left chicane. The switchbacks are actually 9/6/6/9 on the inside and 12/9/9/12 on the outside...so that'll keep that trigger finger moving.

So layout is decided.

Wiring and Power

Track will be powered by 4 traditional AFX wall packs, one per lane. Power supply is one of those "nice-to-have, but will have to wait till I'm back to work" things. Plus my slot buddy who's place I've been racing at, that's all he's ever used and everything works great.

Power taps. I'm taking a bit of a gamble on power taps. I remember reading a great tutorial by SlottV, and later I found it reintroduced on THIS thread over on Slot Car Illustrated. It basically shows you how to attach power taps to the rails without soldering...which is a good one for me to try first...because my suckage at soldering is stupendous. So my taps are ready to go...no pics of those though. (the above thread has lots of step by step photos if you're curious)

Driver Stations

I went on here and searched lots about driver stations. Not wanting to make yet another trip to home depot, I wondered if I could make them with just what I had on hand. I had a 2 foot length of 1x3 and a hole saw, so I went to work. I made four 6 inch sections, then bored the three holes out of each one with a 1 1/8 inch hole saw. Drill a hole up thru the bottom for the brass bolt, like below.



Sand, smooth and paint, and I ended up four of these. (yeah I know someone advised against putting the red one in the middle, but they were done by the time I got that advice.)



Wiring.

Going into this very cautiously, as I know very little about how this all works. I've followed most of the advice on hoslotcarracing.com about wiring, so I got the terminal blocks and all that stuff.

The wall warts go into a workman's power bar that's attached on the side of the table.



The wall warts are wrapped in the corresponding lane colors. One piece of advice I got was to mark everything...wall warts, all wires, etc in the color of the lane its servicing. Down the road, I dont want to have to flip my table up and then try and figure out which wire is which. So you'll see all my wires flagged with the lane color. That handy dandy 4 pack of electricians tape in red/yellow/green/blue comes in handy.

(I still have to figure out if I should shorten the wall wart wires, or just figure out a way to bundle them up out of the way)


So today I got the white (positive) wires all wired up. Here they go into the main power terminal.



Across the lanes. All the wires will be secured, they're just hanging there right now. Tomorrow we'll work on the red and black.

 

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I echo Al,looks good T.:thumbsup:

If you hit your local Princess Auto,you should be able to find 14G wire in the colours you need,if you want to make it real easy to trace out your wiring down the road.

I like the lay-out you've done,fast and techinical:thumbsup:

Trevor,if you haven't seen this article,it's worth reading,it's a pretty decent article on waking up your wallwarts and cleaning up their inherent AC ripple

http://www.dxing.info/equipment/wall_warts_bryant.dx

Rick
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks guys. Got everything wired today from the driver stations and the power supplies. Tomorrow we attach the power taps. Funny, as careful as I was, I was still unable to avoid it turning into a bit of a rat's nest in the one corner of the table where most of the wiring action is. A few pics:

Red to red and white to white


The two terminal blocks with the colored tape are the terminals for the wires coming from the power tracks. I opted to put those blocks there because for the solderless power taps, you need a smaller guage wire and I wanted to keep those wires as short as possible.


A look down the bottom of the table. As you can see, I decided to forgo brakes for now. Hooking them up shouldn't be too much of a hassle if I change my mind. But for now, no brakes.
 

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That's not a rat's nest,it actually looks pretty good;)
Easy to trace out,it's simple,what more could you ask for,:thumbsup:

I've seen some pretty ugly wiring jobs,and yours isn't one of them.
Good work :thumbsup:
Rick
 

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Nice looking track, take your time with it, the more time in track line the better it will be, I rushed it a bit, so now I'm going back though it. Your wiring looks good and it does look neat and easy to figure out. maybe one day we could race on each others tracks, as there are both built around same time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I rushed it a bit, so now I'm going back though it.
Thanks for the comps. I like the look of yours too. Actually I mentioned it in Bobzilla's thread, but if you'd asked me before seeing it if I'd like the way an orange table looked, I'd tell you I hated the idea. But it really does look excellent.

Now you say you're going back through it...what went wrong? Yours seems in good form to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Howdy all. Just doing a little cleanup and decided to keep it all on one thread...so I moved my last post over here and I'll keep this one going. :dude:

Anyway, onward to victory. And by that I mean, today was a BIG victory for me.

I completed the wiring under the table. I know some of the handier guys on the board could probably do it on their lunch break, but its taken me a couple of days. (My wire stripping and crimping hand is feeling it today.) So the end result looks like this.



After going over all the terminals, making sure I had continuity everywhere and making sure the lugs were screwed in snug, I flipped the table back over. My two "solderless" terminal tracks (thanks again SlottV) were already secured to the tabletop, so I set up a little oval just to test it out.

Walla


So then the only thing to do was attach a couple alligator clips to my controller and test it out!

:hat::hat: It worked! Every lane worked the way it was supposed to. :hat::hat:

So I spent about 15 minutes doing little donuts in each lane. Whee.

Now what's left to do is the other pair of terminals, then we're on to track modeling.

Big thank you out to all the Hobbytalk faithful. Without you guys answering my questions, this thing probably would have blown up in my face. So far, so good.

Think I'm gonna go down and do some more donuts. :cool:
 
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