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  • Roller Test Stand

    Picked up a roller test stand with a voltmeter and I added a photo tach to it. Also have an ammeter that can be hooked up, don't see much current without a real load on the wheels. Mostly using this to check top speed and smoothness of the car. Typically people use a power supply to run something like this. I have it connected to my digital track power. One it gives me a voltage readout of what actual track power is. Best part is using the wireless controllers to operate the test mule. This way the same controller a guy is using and the actual track voltage determines real car performance as seen when running on the track itself.
    A couple of observations. Never noticed in track running the 16 speed steps of a Carrera controller but it is readily apparent on the stand. Tried a Frankenslot controller with 32 steps and the difference is easily seen.
    Discovered another thing. If a car is set up as a ghost car it runs on the test stand and then stops after about 25 seconds. Thought it might be that since it never crosses the start line it might be causing it to stop. With another ghost car running on the track and a ghost on the test stand the test subject still stops after about 25 seconds. Lifted the rear tires of the track ghost and it stops after 25 sec. So I'm curious as to how this comes about. Apparently it must sense the low amp draw of a running motor. I also wonder if this could somehow be worked into a way to yellow just ghost cars separately from the racing pack. That might be a neat feature added to Smartrace.

    E7EC8B36-F3E7-44E9-9316-379499059E64.jpeg


  • #2
    Couple more pics of the test stand. Solid aluminum roller on ball bearings. Ran black tape around the center of the roller for contrast for the reflective strip. 1/2” peek hole thru the case for the tach. Aluminum bracket screwed to the case with velcro to secure the handheld tach. Would be better if you didn't have to maintain pressing the test button but works good. Intended for 132 cars but the Porsche 917 is a 124 and fits fine. Going to change out the metal strips for the magnetic fence. At .015” thick there is much steel for the magnets to cling to. Case is all plastic. Bought the test stand from Slot Car Corner and the tach from Amazon.

    060C05E7-2636-4FD6-9373-1174CD861D18.jpeg214FA74A-9489-457A-96BB-36B0EA43352C.jpeg

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    • #3
      Nice test stand!!!

      By the way their a safety system built into Carrera digital cars. When in Ghost car mode they have to cross over a dead spot within every 30 seconds or they will shut off. Even a momentary loss of power keeps them running, but with constant signal/power the fail safe will kick in in 30 seconds. This is to prevent the car from burning out a motor if it is stuck behind an obstruction. I heard some say it was closer to 15 seconds. I'm not sure the exact amount of time and haven't tested that in years, maybe it's 25 seconds.

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      • #4
        Thats interesting. My time is approximate, 1001,1002,1003.... I imagine if you had no lane changers in your layout ghost cars might not work out.
        One thing I had hoped to do was run cars in on the test stand at a lower speed set as a ghost car.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Rokon View Post
          Going to change out the metal strips for the magnetic fence. At .015” thick there is much steel for the magnets to cling to. Case is all plastic.
          060C05E7-2636-4FD6-9373-1174CD861D18.jpeg214FA74A-9489-457A-96BB-36B0EA43352C.jpeg
          I don't understand. What metal strips?

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          • #6
            Overhead shot that shows them better. There is a small aluminum angle with magnets glued on that is your adjustable push fence for the cars. The steel strips are glued to the two edges of the plastic box top. They're actually Starrett .015 shim stock. Both had fallen off in shipment. The super glue between metal and plastic didn't like the winter cold during shipment I do think or the oil film on the shim stock wasn't cleaned off. I used double stick tape to remount. The fence isn't that secure. Increasing the mass of steel for the magnets to grip should help immensely.

            F8FBDE03-5CD6-41A2-ACA2-8774B8E823A3.jpeg

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            • #7
              Understand now. Makes sense. It does make for easy adjustability.

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              • #8
                When this was 1st introduced a couple of years ago it was just for 1/32 cars. They made a new version I think was 1" longer to accommodate 1/24 cars. Did it work without the black tape you added? You would think that they would have done something like this.

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                • #9
                  The tach isn't included with the test stand. Due to the shiny aluminum roller I couldn't get a good reading until I gave it some contrast.
                  No idea on a longer version. I've read about extending the slot some for more room. The 124's I have all fit ok.

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                  • #10
                    Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh, What a dip sh*t I am. I miss understood. Not hard to believe actually. You added the tach stand. I thought the stand was included but not the tach. Great idea.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Rokon View Post
                      The tach isn't included with the test stand. Due to the shiny aluminum roller I couldn't get a good reading until I gave it some contrast.
                      No idea on a longer version. I've read about extending the slot some for more room. The 124's I have all fit ok.
                      I was just searching the forum and came across this thread.

                      How are you liking the roller test bench so far, Rokon?

                      I just got one In the mail last week and haven’t given it a try yet.


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                      • #12
                        It works well. The roller is well made and on ball bearings. The tach answers the question of top wheel speed of cars and allows speed limit adjustments to balance out the field of cars. I also use it for quick tire buffs. With it connected to the track, being able to use your controller with your car is handy and a separate power supply isn't needed. The voltage readout doubles as an easy way to see what is going on power-wise on the track.

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                        • #13
                          Glad to hear it. Looking forward to putting mine to some good use.

                          How are you connecting it to your track?

                          I bought one with the goal of troubleshooting and tuning some of my older Carreras as well as my Sideways cars with digital chips.

                          Thanks for getting back to me.

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                          • #14
                            My test stand power connection is connected via an extension from a track power jumper wire.

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                            • #15
                              Great idea. I think I’ll do that once I get my track up and running again.

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