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  • Set Up Block

    Hi, first post. I’m an old Tjet guy, and have taken it up again in retirement after 45 year hiatus. It seems like a few things have changed since then. I’m trying to get caught up, but it can be a bit bewildering. My question regards set up blocks, such as the one from RTHO. What are they used for and how does one use them? How does one choose which block is best to purchase? Sorry in advance if this is too basic or covered already, but I couldn’t find this topic discussed in a search of the forum.
    John
    Last edited by John Hanks; 04-06-2021, 05:29 PM. Reason: More detail

  • #2
    Those setup blocks are mostly used with pancake cars, especially T-Jets. First of all they provide a flat surface so you can easily tell if a warped chassis or other defect is keeping all four wheels from touching the track. The raised areas are used to check the pickup shoes, you would want those to ride flat on your track rails. You would need a block with raised areas that match the height of your track's rails.
    See this T-Jet tuning article: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1msY...ew?usp=sharing

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    • #3
      I'm assuming you are referring to the setup blocks with the 4 different pad heights. My guess is the majority of people who use these are racing on a group of tracks. The pad heights represent various rail heights for different tracks. For some races classes, such as Fray, you are allowed to restrict the shoes. Basically, the window on the shoe that fits over the hooks in the front of the car are shortened by bending the top of the pickup shoe over or by using shrink wrap. This limits the up and down movement of the car and improves the handling. By determining the range of rail heights on a track, such as .011" - .013", you adjust the shoe restriction so when shoes are sitting flat on the pad (another use of the block), they barely move down when the car is picked up. Also as you are doing this, you can make sure the entire contact patch of the pickup shoe is flat as possible. The better the connection to the rail, the better the car runs. There are many articles and videos on pickup shoe tuning for t-jets. If you find a couple of these, it will help to understand the purpose of the block.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by RichD View Post
        Those setup blocks are mostly used with pancake cars, especially T-Jets. First of all they provide a flat surface so you can easily tell if a warped chassis or other defect is keeping all four wheels from touching the track. The raised areas are used to check the pickup shoes, you would want those to ride flat on your track rails. You would need a block with raised areas that match the height of your track's rails.
        People racing inline cars use them as well. Good shoe contact helps ever car. I don't wait until the car is build to determine if it warped and tires are not all exactly the same size and affect your measurements. I make sure the chassis is not warped before I build a car with it.

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        • #5
          Thank you so much for your responses. They are very helpful.

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          • #6
            If you are setting up cars to run on a single track, another trick is to mark the bottom of the shoes with a sharpie and drive the cars around for a couple of laps and then look at the wear pattern. You are looking for a solid line of wear that is short of hourglass shaped from the front to back of the shoe indicating you have good contact across the pickup shoe surface.

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            • #7
              A dry erase marker as well. Mark the shoes and roll it forward on the track a few inches. Marks or not permanent on shoe or track. Works much better than a sharpie and wipes away.

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              • #8
                Interesting ideas. Thank you!

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