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Newbie from Vancouver BC

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  • #31
    Carpet fiber gets into axles and motors. It's harmless, but cleaning it out becomes a regular maintenance task. The last time I used it, the store had big rubber backed pieces for use as runners.

    I like Homasote as a table surface. It's a pressed paper wallboard that usually has a grass/linen texture on one side You can simply soak it in one color of paint, or create as complex a surface as you want by painting ribbons of different solid browns as an underbase (start with two shades of brown paint and keep randomly changing the mix) and then brush green across the texture to create grass(again randomly change the green shade as you work). Homasote can be carved to create ponds or creeks that run under the track and stacked to create hills.

    It's probably easiest to do basic painting of the earth/grass base before the sheets go on the table top. You can always repaint spots you hate when it's on the table or when the track is on it or wen you install other scenery as easily as if it hadn't been painted.

    There's a WHOLE lot of information about Homasote in the model train community.


    • #32
      As long as the carpet is closed loop (like berber), which is common for indoor/outdoor carpet, it's fine. Lots of plastic tracks I race on use it to cover up the plywood, and fuzz/lint is not a problem. "Shag" style carpet, even if it's really low pile, is where the risk is, which is pretty common for living rooms/dens, and so where lots of plastic tracks go, and where lots of slot cars pick up terrible nests of fibers on their axles.


      • #33
        I was in a local hardware store yesterday, looking for material for my table top and came across some very high quality synthetic putting turf, which seemed ideal - 1/2" pile, very realistic. The price was prohibitive though - $5/sq foot. However, went on FB Marketplace and found a few ads selling offcuts for $2-3/sq foot. I could put 2-3 pieces together to cover the table.

        What do you guys think?
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        • #34
          If the price is right, sure. I've seen people use that a bit. It's easier to lose screws and small parts in that kind of stuff, though.


          • #35
            Yikes. To cover my table with 3 remnants, it would cost me $250. Firmly on the fence now...


            • #36
              Hop right off and go to Home Depot or wherever. You don't need putting green, just cheap indoor/outdoor carpet.

              Sometimes big box stores will even have a 6x9 or larger rolled up and ready for sale for like $40 or so. There's almost always a green color that is an acceptable grass substitute.


              • #37
                Bought mine at Home Depot/Lowes. Green. Doesn't look like real grass, but it's good enough for me. They both had 6x9 rolls for ~$20.00. Last I bought was about a year and a half ago.


                • #38
                  Man, at least don't buy that plastic grass stuff. :-)


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by thatguy01 View Post
                    Man, at least don't buy that plastic grass stuff. :-)
                    Can that stuff be modified? Such as, by spraying it with a flat clear surface primer?


                    • #40
                      I can't imagine what good that would do. What were you thinking spraying the plastic grass would change?


                      • #41
                        Uh, the appearance? Maybe I'm dreaming.

                        I'm reminded of the time, many years ago, when a player for the Miami Dolphins offered the opinion that two things were so tough that they would probably survive armaggedon.

                        One of them was Don Shula, the other was Astroturf ...

                        Meanwhile, I wonder if there are any bright ideas in Boone's Slot Car Garage?


                        • #42
                          Maybe it could be dry brushed with another shade of green (or two shades randomly mixed in the pan while working).

                          Latex might not stick to the plastic.


                          • #43
                            Hey guys. Track update: I managed to complete the table on the weekend. I'm using the crappy fake grass for now, until I can get to the hardware store to check out the outdoor carpet you all suggested. I tried to put together thatguy01's track but was short 4 2/30 corners. Luckily I found a dealer 30 mins away with exactly what I needed PLUS a brand new Startlight for $100 (score!).

                            I have an issue with some residual plastic in the slot of my pit exit lane. My 911 gets stuck on it. Should I just dremel it out? Also - were Porsche 904's really that much smaller than modern 911's??? Mine looks like its 1:43 scale!
                            Attached Files


                            • #44
                              The track has been put together! I'm experimenting with elevating the first 3/30 turn for more visual appeal. I will have to put some guardrails, fencing in as we've already had some fatalities!

                              Originally I was going to install a monitor/android box for Smartrace on the left hand side wall (if looking from the CU), but now thinking I will install it opposite the CU, where the double lane change is. I think it would look awesome with an articulating monitor arm, floating above mid track. That way, wires would be completely hidden and the view would be perfect. Looking at 27" monitors now. I have not seen any other people doing this - is there a downside? Thanks for your help - you guys are all I have!! No one else 'gets it' lol
                              Attached Files


                              • #45
                                - were Porsche 904's really that much smaller than modern 911's??? Mine looks like its 1:43 scale!
                                The 904 has about the same footprint as the original 911. The original 911 is nominally a four-seat passenger car, so it has a taller and longer greenhouse (along with a true rear engine instead of the 904's mid engine)

                                The modern 911 basically is designed around its ENORMOUS tires.