Slot Cars for Life
This is what started it all: My original 1974 AFX Handbook. I still remember when I bought it about two years after it came out. Oh, the years I spent thinking about how someday I would have a track just like the Clubman setup they showed in those pictures. Well, it only took about 20 years but I finally did it. Perhaps it was the influence of an old friend that I shared a love of model rocketry and slot cars with... Afterall, he was the one with the 1/32nd scale Strombecker set. Man those cars would powerslide around the corners. I was the AFX guy on our block and had a host of cars and a permanent track setup on particle board back in the day. Today, I still have about 100 of those little cars. And here I am some 30 years later still playing with toy cars, only marginally bigger. Jealous aren't you? I thought so. So hang on because over the next 20-some pages of pictures I will walk you through how to make an awesome 1/32nd scale race track so all your friends can come over and ooh and ahh at it too. Oh, I still play with big cars once in a while.
Before I got to the stage above showing the Auto World car 54, I first invested in plastic, sectional track as seen below. It was fun but the magnets ruined the performance. The magnets sucked down the cars so much that motor differences between cars of the same body style acted completely different performance wise. Seems no to magnets are the same. Additionally, if the track sat for long periods of time, the connections would loose their electrical contact with the adjacent piece. On top of this, the track would shrink or expand based on the extreme temperature changes in my garage. Wire taps helped on the electrical side but were a pain to constantly route under the track and then attach to various track points, especially if I changed layouts. Bottom line: Sectional track is much higher in maintenance than any wood track. Only a single tap is needed on any length of wood track. And the temperature has no affect on any part of the wood track.
Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18
Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Night Driving (23) Making Tires (24) Brass Chassis (25)
Switching Scales (26) Routed HO (27) Rails Installed (28) Oval Action (29)
New 1/32 Beginning (30) Construction (31) Routing (32) Painting and Taping (33) Power Taps and Timing (34)
Up and Running (35) Scenery (36) More Slot Racing (37),br. Aurora and Atlas HO Slot Racing (38) The Fray in Ferndale 2015 (39) The 2016 Fray in Ferndale (40)
These are photos of my first attempt at building a 3-lane slot car track. I used 3/8th particle board, a 1/8 carbide router bit, and a special piece lexan plastic as a guide. I used a very inexpensive router that was more than adequate. For the curved overpass and the ramp, I randomly back cut the underside of the track and it really helped make the boards bend. All pieces of the track were screwed to the deck or supporting pieces with drywall screws. Bondo was then used to bridge any gaps and then rerouted to complete the groove.
I think you will agree that wood tracks make plastic track feel like, well, plastic basically! Wood rules. I am now considering re-routing (it really is not that hard and is a whole lot of fun) to make for a 5 lane course where two lanes have the ability to run a shorter course. Combine this with the addition of 10-cent diodes and a simply train transformer and I should be able to run 5 cars in the three lanes (the two additional lanes being used for passing). That would be a whol lot of fun and quite possible. I have another three feet of space lengthwise available to me to incorporate this idea (thanks Jimmy Attard for this idea). Feel free to email me if you need any words of wisdom or ideas.
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Michael Nyberg 2015
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