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  • Digital Cars Stopping

    I have encountered a strange problem. Prior to the xmas period I fitted stronger magnets to 5 digital easy chip F1 Cars.

    All fairly recent and newish. They run off a c7042 with power taps and no noticeable power loss around a 4 lane to 3 lane to 2 lane track.

    This is basically so I can bring children into the game, and newer novice drivers who cannot resist having a go.

    On Monday a 2009 Ferrari stopped working on the track whilst being used as a pacer car. Didn't really think too much about it, all the cars have been tuned and reassembled correctly.

    This afternoon I was to have some family around, I set a 2009 Brawn against a Petronas as pacer cars, after about 1/2 an hour the Petronas gave up the ghost also.

    I have changed chips and the other 3 cars are still running. However I am reluctant to

    a) take cars apart again
    b) run cars again

    Until i know what could be causing this problem.

    Have I burnt out the motor?
    Is it related to change to a stronger magnet?

    All the cars are recent incarnations of F1 slot cars and have all been purchased new in last 9 months.

    I have been racing for about a year, and as a novice I am used to the problems and frustrations associated with the Hobby.

    This appears to be an unexpected setback, which I had not foreseen happening.

    Any advice, observations, related to overcoming similar experience encountered would be appreciated, before I go tinkering.

    Cheers in advance

  • #2
    Putting stronger magnets in will cause the motor to require more amps to run, which can overtax the power output of the chip, causing them to stop until they cool down, or fail completely. The same can happen if you replace motors with faster/stronger ones.

    It's probably the chip, not the motor, but you can test that by putting the analog panel back in and trying the car(s) in analog mode. If they work OK, then you know you've blown the chip.

    If you want to hop up the cars rather than reduce power to help bad drivers keep their cars on, you'll need to get the chips upgraded with better diodes and mosfets. If you're good at surface mount electronics, you can do it yourself. Otherwise, contact GMyers about upgrading your chips. He can repair the damaged ones as well, and the upgrade/repair costs less than a replacement chip.

    However, I feel that it's better to reduce power to cars driven by those who cannot control speed properly. It's also my belief that reducing/removing magnets teaches driving skills much more quickly than adding magnets, even and especially for young children. Not to mention the reduction in damage to cars when they do crash.
    Last edited by MrFlippant; 12-26-2013, 04:12 PM.

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    • #3
      Running pace or "autonomous" cars is harder on the chips than conventional manned operation. This is due to the higher power dissipation at mid-range throttle. Running for an extended period of time can overheat the chips causing sudden failure or gradual damage. It is usually not an issue in cars with some air space around the chip, but the close fitting bodywork of the F1 cars is maybe the worst case scenario.

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      • #4
        Thanks for the help Earthbound, I have swapped chip to no avail, does this mean I have fried the motors? Obviously wont run the F1 again on Pacer, but now want to fix the cars. Cheers Nick

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        • #5
          I've had a couple fail in GT40's. I suspect excessive drag due to the magnet and maybe heat buildup where the board was placed - next to the motor and there isn't much circulation in there I suspect. I had one where the car stopped, after a cooling down period worked again for a short time and then gave up the ghost. No obvious evidence of a blown mosfet. However, the other one definitely had a blown chip. I've decided to fore go doing anymore GT40's for the time being, but the next one's I do I will lose the magnet. I've sent a PM to gmyers to see about getting the two I have repaired, but awaiting a response.

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          • #6
            Nick, if you put the "analog chip" (the door that you take out of the car in order to put the DPR chip in) BACK into the car, and the car still doesn't go, then there's some other problem. Could be a bad motor, but that's rare unless you managed to get the car stuck somewhere with throttle applied for a long time. It's more likely there's a broken wire somewhere between the braids and the motor. It could even be a break at the connector somewhere.

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            • #7
              Thanks Mr F, I am going to start now, I have had 3 cars blown in a short period of time

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              • #8
                Ok as suggested put the Analogue "door" back on, two of the cars (Ferrari and McLaren F1) run on Analogue but, will not respond at allwith any digital chip.

                Only the Mercedes Petronas does not respond at all.

                What in your professional opinion, is your Prognosis?, again thanks for all the help as usual.

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                • #9
                  The ones that run in analog mode but not with a DPR chip are probably fine, but the chips you're trying in them are not. UNLESS you can put one of those chips into another car and have it work. Them, I don't know what the problem is.

                  The Petronas might just have a broken wire somewhere between the guide and the motor, possibly the ferrite man legs, or possibly the chip connector. I've even had a car that just needed the wires pressed into the connector a bit better.

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                  • #10
                    first, remove the extra magnets to avoid any additional damage. on the surface, the extra mags seem to be the likely culprit as they can put too much strain on the chip.

                    take a chip out of a good car and put it into a bad car. does the bad car work now? if so, then the bad car's original chip was fried. if not, there is something else wrong - break in the wiring or a loose solder joint.

                    with the chip removed, put a 9v battery up to the motor tabs. does the motor spin? if not then the motor might be bad.
                    Last edited by boopiejones; 12-30-2013, 12:15 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Just don't put a battery to the motor while the chip is installed! This can send power back into the chip the wrong way and fry it. Ask me how I know.

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                      • #12
                        yikes! i've edited my post as I don't want anyone to fry more chips... thanks for the heads up

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