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  #1  
Old 02-25-2009, 09:18 PM
Stone Axe Stone Axe is offline
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Default Slot.it Light Kit

My buddy and I both bought the Slot.it light kits and we've had some issues.

First, his headlights went out right away. Mine are doing OK.

There aren't a lot of the bodies that can take the lights due to tight clearances. You can bend the stiff leads over but they are fragile and this is risky.

Grinding off the melted posts to disassemble the front headlight assemblies is a tad dicey and is trial and error to figure out just how to remove the bits you need. Grinding a hole for the tail lights is also dicey in order to line up with the desired lens and then not have excess plastic obscure the LEDs.

Typical plastic weld cement doesn't adhere to the LED plastic - so I had to use CA - which doesn't work that great either.

In the case of my McLaren GTR the extra silicone power wires don't really fit once I screw the body back down. I got them to fit, but they want to flex the chassis and limit the range that I can run the front screw. Once it is screwed down, the guide no longer has its "natural" smooth, light pivoting and return to center.

Here's the big concern: it seems like it diminishes the power and speed a tad. This is subjective, but it does feel a tad less than my other GTR and F40 - though it still runs similarly.

Any one else installed one of these kits and have any insights?
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  #2  
Old 02-25-2009, 10:15 PM
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slotbutton slotbutton is offline
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I have installed about 10 Slot-It light kits and agree the first one was the most challenging. I will post some pics of the different set ups I have used in the McLaren,Porsche,Nissan and Jaguar. The light kits are generally bulletproof, I have some that have run 24hrs without fault.
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  #3  
Old 02-25-2009, 10:52 PM
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Wet Coast Racer Wet Coast Racer is offline
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Quote:
Any one else installed one of these kits and have any insights?
I did it once, because I had to in order to meet the rules requirements for an endurance race. Just about drove me crazy, even though the chassis and body of the car (a McLaren GT1 longtail in this case) are designed for it.

Properly installed - and I can't stress how much of a pain in the ankle it was - they then worked perfectly. And it's great fun to race in the dark, a unique slot racing experience for me.

But I'm in no hurry to do it again and haven't bought another of their light kits because for me it isn't worth the hastle and expense.
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  #4  
Old 02-26-2009, 06:38 AM
PROkofiev and the CONvict PROkofiev and the CONvict is offline
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There aren't a lot of the bodies that can take the lights due to tight clearances. You can bend the stiff leads over but they are fragile and this is risky. The leads are not fragile. Just take the LED in some pliers and bend the leads over in the direction they need to be. Get the bends right and there's no fragility issue. As for lack of bodies, the SP-10 is designed to fit the Slot.It cars except the Alfa 33, Ferrari 312 and Ferrari F40 and should not be expected to fit any others. SP-16 will fit most any car that would have had lights in 1:1.

Grinding off the melted posts to disassemble the front headlight assemblies is a tad dicey and is trial and error to figure out just how to remove the bits you need. Grinding a hole for the tail lights is also dicey in order to line up with the desired lens and then not have excess plastic obscure the LEDs.
Remove the headlight lenses first then the little 'head lights' then remove the tailights lenses. Use a sharp blade to scrape away the glue and/or melted plastic that holds those parts in place. Holes for the headlight LEDs are easily drilled from the front. With the taillight lenses removed, and the black backing piece on the McLaren, drilling the taillight lenses is easily done. On most of the Slot.It cars, not the McLaren, the small post that locates the taillight lens on the body can be removed which leaves an easy mounting point for the LED.

Typical plastic weld cement doesn't adhere to the LED plastic - so I had to use CA - which doesn't work that great either. Use Shoe-Goo or some other semi liquid vinyl product. Aside from keeping the glue off the face of the LED there's no reason to be neat, fact for some permanence the taillight LEDs can end up buried in the glue.

In the case of my McLaren GTR the extra silicone power wires don't really fit once I screw the body back down. I got them to fit, but they want to flex the chassis and limit the range that I can run the front screw. Once it is screwed down, the guide no longer has its "natural" smooth, light pivoting and return to center.

At a guess you've run the two leads to the guide? No!!! Run the two wires under the front axle then loop them back over the axle and attach them to the motor leads behind the axle. Or remove the leads and resolder them so they're heading to the back of the car and then attach them to the motor leads or to the motor itself.



Here's the big concern: it seems like it diminishes the power and speed a tad. This is subjective, but it does feel a tad less than my other GTR and F40 - though it still runs similarly. Not likely. Unless your power supply isn't up to it. Which in itself is unlikely as LEDs draw so little current. If the cars are slower, is there a timer involved?, then likely it's due to interference between some part of the light kit and some other part of the car.

Last edited by PROkofiev and the CONvict; 02-26-2009 at 06:41 AM.
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  #5  
Old 02-26-2009, 07:46 AM
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svanaken svanaken is offline
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I hooked up my set to a Sauber Mercedes. Not a major problem with installation, though as noted, you do have to bend the LED leads for the lights to keep the wires from interfering. I stuck the set's wires in the guide and that has not been an issue. I used RTV to hold the lights in place. With the Sauber, there was not any need to drill out the tail lights as the kit lights fit fine behind the extant lenses. For the head lights, I simply popped off the clear cover and drilled through the inner headlight.

Where I do have an issue is that the 'brake light' function is practically non-existant and I commented on this in an earlier post. I believe it is due to the small capacitor and that the discharge circuitry does not go through the tail lights long enough. It is only after about five seconds of full throttle that I can discern any increased brightness in the tail lights once I let off the trigger. If you want brake lights, get a set from someone else. For standard lights, it works just fine.

Scott
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  #6  
Old 02-26-2009, 08:46 AM
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Default I use hot glue

generously, to hold everything in place.

Beauty is, if you have to hold some read LED assmblies in place, you can get them set right, drown them in hot glue, and 5 seconds later the glue is set enough to let go. But if you make a mistake, you can still prize the glue off ad have another go.
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  #7  
Old 02-26-2009, 04:41 PM
hepkat63 hepkat63 is offline
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Hi,
I have done twelve of these now, the first few were a bit dodgy, but got it down pretty well now. I use a dremel, soldering iron and hot glue gun.

start by soldering the kit together - gently.

lay the kit out best you can in the body - keeping in mind when you have it upside down, you don't scratch the paint work or bend aerials etc. I use a small hand towel under the car.

Once loosely fitted, check for clearance with the interior. You may need to take a LITTLE off the drivers legs sometimes. Other points to note is that - especially on the Mclarens, you leave enough room for the front wheels to turn. Mostly on the Mclarens, apart from taking the headlights out - you need to take a small amount of plastic off the inside of the headlight surround. On the audi's it is cool as the outside plastic 'pops out'.

For the rear lights, I use a thin tip soldering iron and carefully 'push' the iron through the rear lights - makes perfect hole - yes, you DO have to be careful or you'll stuff the car really quick. For attaching the lights, a hot glue gun is the only way to go. Drop a small amount on the circuit board then use a small screwdriver to hold the wire NEXT to the circuit board (away from the glue) for a minute while the glue tacks off/cools down. Then you use your finger to press the rest of the way in place.
front lights are either a soldering iron or vise drill to make the hole to press out the front lights. Be careful to press out the SAME light on each side - either the inside or outside ones.. don't do what I did and do one of each...

Once all the lights and circuit board are in - TEST it on a power supply to make sure that they work... it will take about ten seconds on a power supply before they light up as the battery charges.

Once that works, then hot glue in everything and leave the lead wire attachments out. Remembering with the hot glue, you have a good 30 seconds or so after it starts to cool down to move things. The beauty of hot glue is if you DO stuff up, just GENTLY use your soldering iron JUST above the glue to 'loosen' it and move your wires... Yes, got caught there too !!

Ok, you can either now attach the wires to the lead wires in the guide, OR solder them on the motor with the lead wires -depends on how much room you have. I like to even sometimes EXTEND the wires to be longer, so i can get the body off and on easily, but again, depends on the type of car.

As a side note, when I ran out of slot.it light kits, I used Ninco ones - which work really well too. The transistor board is a lot bigger though and sometimes had to be mounted vertically along the body edge.
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  #8  
Old 02-27-2009, 12:36 AM
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slotbutton slotbutton is offline
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Well was going to copy some images from my gallery to this thread but it's to late for me to figure this out. I have posted some installations I have done on various cars.


Thanks JML

Last edited by slotbutton; 02-27-2009 at 07:27 AM. Reason: Computer illiterate
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  #9  
Old 02-27-2009, 05:11 AM
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JML JML is offline
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Open up your gallery, get to the picture you want, and then copy the BB code entry (the second field under the image). Paste that into the message, and you'll be all set.
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  #10  
Old 02-27-2009, 12:27 PM
hepkat63 hepkat63 is offline
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Here's the big concern: it seems like it diminishes the power and speed a tad. This is subjective, but it does feel a tad less than my other GTR and F40 - though it still runs similarly. Not likely. Unless your power supply isn't up to it. Which in itself is unlikely as LEDs draw so little current. If the cars are slower, is there a timer involved?, then likely it's due to interference between some part of the light kit and some other part of the car.[/quote]

Interesting you say this - as I too noticed this, but ONLY when the car first started up - in other words once the battery was charged - which takes about ten seconds, no power loss.
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  #11  
Old 02-27-2009, 08:26 PM
Stone Axe Stone Axe is offline
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Wow. Thanks for all of the responses.

I will definitely do my next light kit install a little differently and with a little more confidence.

My buddy must have gotten a bad kit because his leads were coming undone by just looking at them.

I'm still skeptical about getting the kit to fit my 962 or 33/3.

Further anecdotal evidence suggests that the light kit is diminishing the performance a tad. I do have two McLaren GTRs to compare. As suggested, if the lights are dead it is most noticeable when drag starting - but the difference is palpable at all times. Maybe just having this circuit in place absorbs enough current to slightly clip the peak voltage under load. Maybe the extra weight is enough to make it less "crisp". Maybe the different weight distribution or stiffening of the front of the chassis and motor pod mount has some effect.

Has anyone taken two identical cars and drag tested them too?
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  #12  
Old 02-27-2009, 09:59 PM
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Quote:
I will definitely do my next light kit install a little differently and with a little more confidence.
I suspect that if I ever tackled the project again myself, I would feel the same way.

But it is, IMHO , a heck of a task. This is a picture of the McLaren chassis I mentioned, being constructed:



Trying to get the ride height of the front axle correct in this no-mag car, whilst also stuffing in the circuit board (which clearly doesn't fit, if you look at the positioning against the front pod screw mounts), placing some lead to try and keep the front end down (the rules demanded a monster motor), and coincidentally wiring in an independent extra bulb in the front end to make the car identifiable for racing long stints in the dark, was a challenge to say the least.

Quote:
Further anecdotal evidence suggests that the light kit is diminishing the performance a tad.
My logical mind says that this can't be correct - presuming of course that the power supply has sufficient voltage and/or amperage for the draw. The capacitor takes a few seconds to build, and then works (sorry I have to) brilliantly. But my only practical experience is in an Endurance Race where the car is flogging lap after lap, rather than a dragstrip comparison, so entirely subjective.

Could be though that, with the time needed to build the capacitor to the point where the lights are working as they should (only a lap or two) that a person might conclude that the car's motive performance was diminished?
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