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8' x 16' Carrera Digital Hoisted Layout

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  • 8' x 16' Carrera Digital Hoisted Layout

    An entire year after buying a decent size layout second hand and selling off about half of it, then buying replacements in what appealed more to me and designing probably 50+ different layouts, I'm finally moving forward with a permanent layout. It's going to be 8' x 16', and I intend to hoist it to the ceiling in our basement for storage. I plan to have positive stops that will slide or pivot into place when it's in storage mode for safety reasons, and legs when it's down to keep it stabilized when it's in use. Here's the start of it... it's a Google Drive folder that I'll update as I go.

    https://drive.google.com/folderview?...HE4bGUzZnM0VVU

  • #2
    Very cool. It's too bad they don't make turnouts that would allow you to run as oval or road without taking track apart each time. Also looks like some wireless controllers would be a good investment, or splitting the base from the track so that you can have the CU itself on the outside.

    I look forward to seeing the progress.

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    • #3
      I'm going to try my luck at making my own turnout. I don't think I'll go as far as to make it a digital switch, but definitely a manual switch so it's a quick changeover from oval to road.

      Yeah, for stock car oval racing the CU definitely makes it inconvenient to have corded controllers. I do plan to keep it that way though for reliability reasons (no wireless after previous experiences). Once it's up off the floor, I'll route the cords under the track... I already have (7) of them.
      Last edited by Team Hoagie; 09-11-2017, 09:27 AM.

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      • #4
        I got the pit lane figured out tonight. Had to reconfig the last couple of sections after the downhill on the infield to make the right combos of turns to loop it around, but all-in-all I like it. Going to have to drink a few before I can build up enough care free attitude to cut perfectly good Carrera track in half, but in the end it's going to be worth it... I hope =-/ LOL!!

        It really was a lot of fun though hitting pit lane, and thinking about the effects it will have on the racing action and getting to have it. I have (8) NASCAR COT chassis, so having an extended pit will be huge for allowing everyone to safely exit/enter the track. I do think I'll have to swap my last lane change on the infield for a double though (currently going outside to inside)... it's a long way back around if you're in the wrong lane and miss the pit entrance!

        Thanks!
        Last edited by Team Hoagie; 09-11-2017, 09:30 AM.

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        • #5
          I'd be interested in learning about your hoist system.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by eaddict View Post
            I'd be interested in learning about your hoist system.
            I wanted to do a power lift, but it just isn't in the budget at this time. I should be able to retrofit it later though.

            For now, I'm going with a 4 point lift and winching it with a worm gear winch from Harbor Freight. Each point will run up to a pulley spanning between two joists, and will be turned by anther pulley to run inline for the winch cable. If I need additional lifting support, I'll add two more cable lifting points in the middle of the platform.

            I'm hoping to get it hung in the coming weeks, so I'll be sure to post more pics in the drive folder when I do and let you know here also.

            I just added pictures of my first track merge modification. It's going to be the section for leaving the road course, and re-entering the oval. I need to add jumper wires yet, but the transitions seem to be smooth enough for the slot guide flag. I'll report back once I've wired it up and tested it for electric current and cars crossing lanes... cross your fingers for me.

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            • #7
              crossing fingers for ya...
              so is the transition going to be switch operated?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by MrSqueezeMe View Post
                crossing fingers for ya...
                so is the transition going to be switch operated?
                No. Since it's on the "outlet" of the infield course, I just have to merge traffic back onto the oval. I don't plan to run either of the layouts clockwise, so it won't be an issue.

                My "inlet" transition will have to be something though. To get from oval to infield. I'm thinking manual switch, so that people don't skip the infield.

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                • #9
                  Be sure to have a back up safety system to keep it from falling [such as safety chains, completely separate of the lift system]. A few years back a member had his track fall on his car, wrecking the track and doing significant damage to the car.
                  Really nice work on the crossover track.
                  Randy

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                  • #10
                    It works! But it my need a little tweaking. Posted a couple pics and some videos to the Drive.

                    If you're carrying enough speed, it slips right through the transition with ease. However, if you tip-toe through a little off-throttle, it wants to short out I think. I need to finish it out and actually permanently bond all of the pieces together, and re-smooth the track surface to know for sure I guess.

                    I may choose to remove the ends highlighted in the picture as red and yellow just to be safe... those are the points where I think the car may be shorting because there's two outside rail currents (red) in contact with the brushes, and/or two inside rail currents (yellow). I don't know if the larger gap will be worse though, and I don't know if it's worth the risk of ruining the transition all together if I make a mistake cutting it back more.
                    Last edited by Team Hoagie; 10-30-2017, 08:20 PM.

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                    • #11
                      not sure if this will help but before you cut, measure the dead areas on a double cross over and see what gaps they allowed to prevent shorting. that may help you decide how and where to cut.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Team Hoagie View Post
                        I may choose to remove the ends highlighted in the picture as red and yellow just to be safe... those are the points where I think the car may be shorting because there's two outside rail currents (red) in contact with the brushes, and/or two inside rail currents (yellow). I don't know if the larger gap will be worse though, and I don't know if it's worth the risk of ruining the transition all together if I make a mistake cutting it back more.
                        Atis' suggestion is a good one. Also, you can test the length to cut before you actually cut it, by placing different lengths of tape on the rails until you find the best length.
                        Randy

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 32lbKING View Post
                          ...placing different lengths of tape on the rails until you find the best length
                          I may do that, and just leave it like that if it doesn't interfere... at least until I feel comfortable taking it out permanently anyway.

                          I posted a couple more vids, and the shorting out is going to be an issue.

                          Thanks for the advice everyone!

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                          • #14
                            So I tried running without taking out the short points, and it was problematic. I placed tape over the suspect points, and BINGO that was the ticket! See videos of both trials posted to the Drive link. Thanks again to all for the advice!

                            Next up, I'll be working on the inlet transition and possibly working on the hoist if I find help.
                            Last edited by Team Hoagie; 11-01-2017, 03:07 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Had someone help me today to lift the platform up, and we placed it on top of the pool table, so I could begin working on the hoist system. It was heavy but the two of us managed... thinking 250-300 lbs total weight. I made legs ahead of time to help support it, but it sets so nicely on the pool table (even with all the overhang) I think it'll be fine without. It's at a nice height now too, and will be easier to work on buttoning up the layout.

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