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Stone Bridge Raceway-New Build

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  • Stone Bridge Raceway-New Build

    Being a HO racer for the last 25+ years and having built a 4 lane HO track for club racing I’ve tried to avoid the 1/32 slot cars. The last thing I need is another slot car hobby. Last year I finally caved in and bought a car, a Slot iT Lancia just to have one. Then a friend of mine called me up a week later and said hey I got a track for 1/32 come over and race, I had a blast racing my car and some of his. That put me over the edge and I caught the bug.
    Now I wanted a track, a friend gave me an old Monogram 1/32 plastic track that I setup just to run some cars around on. My wife said she wanted to buy me a good track set for my birthday but needed my input on it. Having lurked around this forum for a few years I’ve seen the trend of guys with plastic tracks after a few years selling or abandoning it to build a routered track. So I told my wife instead of buying a track set that I’d rather just put the money towards building one. After seeing the fantastic detailed tracks other members have built here I knew that was the direction I wanted to go. I drew up several designs that would fit my table size and decided to build it to AC2 specs after thoroughly checking out there web site, although to begin with it will be just run as two lane DC. It will be fully sceniced with a few limitations.
    I used standard 8.5X11 printer paper to layout some designs before deciding on the final version. Much easier to visualize and tweak when its full size on the real table size. Note to self don't turn on the ceiling fan.

    The HO track is in my 24X36 shop located in my backyard and is setup for club racing with fold out pit tables so another track shouldn't be a problem. Now even with a building that size my space for a track is limited due to other hobbies/ stuff that also share space in there. More specifically it has to occupy the same location as the HO track. The max size of track table I could fit there is 16X4 feet. My HO track is lightweight and modular so it can be taken apart to be stored on a wall when not needed. In order to be able to build the 1/32 track I had some of the same engineering criteria that had to be met. First one being like the HO track this had to be able to be moved out of the way, that alone set all the rest of critera to solve. The only space left was to lift it to the ceiling so the table had to be lightweight, rigid,and strong enough to be lifted at four points. My goal is for the total weight with out the legs attached for lifting when all done to be under 300lbs and closer to 250lbs
    After thinking of different ways to accomplish my goals for the table I decided on using lightweight steel/ tin studs for the frame. Then boxing it in like a wall would be. But by laying horizontally, I had to eliminate as much as I could any twisting flex.

    I had planned on tack welding all connection points but with my mig welder all I could do was blow holes in the thin metal.

    After building the frame this way even if wasn't building this to be lightweight I will build any future table frames the same way. It was very fast and easy with a tin snips, bend and screw together with sheet metal screws. All frame, top and botom wood seams are staggerd. This makes a very sturdy table.
    The top surface is 3/8 “ OSB board, I needed something that screws would hold into and it was lighter then plywood. It is screwed and glued with construction adhesive to the frame. There are some 2X4 wood pieces added into the frame were the lift points will be at. Along with some 1X4 wood where the legs bolt to the cross members.

    To give it rigidity and strength the bottom is covered with ΒΌ” luan plywood screwed to the frame but removable to access the wring. I painted it white to match the ceiling better to reflect light so a dark cloud wasn't hanging there. The cut outs are for the legs to be bolted in, same ones I use for the HO track.

    At this point in the build the completed table weighs about 120lbs.

    **I need to confess that this actually started last summer and I'm finally getting around to documenting it**
    Last edited by KJProX; 08-05-2012, 02:26 PM. Reason: add info

  • #2
    Continuing on; At this stage I needed to work on the lifting system, first to see if the table would lift with out bending and folding in half, second was to be able to get it out of the way if needed. I used a boat trailer winch that I already had, some 400lb rope, pulleys and aircraft cable at the lift points.

    I mounted pulleys on the ceiling that the cables go through to a central pull point where the rope attaches to then that goes to the winch. The table only has to lift about 5ft and as soon as its up I hook the safety chains that are attached to the table to additional hooks in the ceiling and back off the tension on the lift system so it's not hanging from it. ( Ignore the extra rope with red stripes, it's not part of this)

    After some adjustment for leveling the system works great and the table has been rasied and lowered a few times now. There are also cable clamps on the cables after the sliders for extra safety

    Now that the engineering and mechanical stuff is out of the way it is time to make some MDF dust! Thanks to a lot of time spent on this site I had a pretty good idea what I needed to do. I already had a full size router but purchased HF trim router for the smaller size. I made a new lexan cam base plate per the AC2 specs ( Guess I don't have a pic of this setup). I had seen the Luft site and the router fence he has but being a DIY guy and also cheap I came up with my own system using a drywall plastic corner bead that I modified a little to flex around corners.

    Even though I've used a router before this sure was a learning experience using the curved fence, it got better as I went but ended up with quit a few gouges and mistakes to repair. Also you can see in this photo I used strips of masonit wedged in the slot for fences too.


    • #3
      Moving ahead; All routered and cut out. The middle bridge was made removable to be finished till last so I could tape under it.

      Now filling all the mistakes, the thousand screw holes for the router fence and re-did my lane change area pictured here. I used a latex wood filler that dried rock hard and sanded smooth. Followed with Vinyl wall spack for the final smoothing out of any low spots.

      More sanding, more filling. The track has every corner cambered with wood shims to some degree except two, so lots of screws holding the track down all counter sunk and filled smooth. At this stage the weight is a little over 200lbs, note the none solid track supports for weight saving.

      Glad that part is over, lots of nights in the shop sanding including the slot to smooth it out, checking by pushing a car around. Finally got to the point I could lay some paint down, flat latex, color is called asphalt I think it was.

      After seeing someones post about fogging on black and then white paint to make it look more like actual tarmac I knew I had to do that also. I also air brushed some black in the braking zones plus corners just to give it a well raced look.

      Closer look at the track.
      Last edited by KJProX; 08-07-2012, 09:25 PM.


      • #4
        Looking good!


        • #5
          You are really gettin' this thing done!
          I like the layout,and the painting works great
          The "jiggles" in the slot won't show after you get taped,but the cars will react to it some. I have a spot or two like that on my track...adds a little interest to the racing


          • #6
            layout, like the paint also!!


            • #7
              Originally posted by 2FER SLOTS View Post
              You are really gettin' this thing done!
              I like the layout,and the painting works great
              The "jiggles" in the slot won't show after you get taped,but the cars will react to it some. I have a spot or two like that on my track...adds a little interest to the racing
              I was going to "Fix" them then I thought this is road racing so I'll just deal with it.

              Thanks guys, I like the way the track looks too and you will see more of the airbrushing part in some later photo's.

              The postings are compressing time here, this is a year worth of work so far, just working on it when I have the time. I should have it caught up to where I'm at now in my next update.


              • #8
                As I said this has been very time compressed here, I actually started building this track a year ago June. The gray base coat of paint was done in February, at that point I contacted Old JayBird about some copper tape. Unfortunately life got in the way and I finally was able to get back to working on it a few weeks ago and ordered up the tape. This is when I did the extra painting and airbrushing before laying the tape.

                Again being a DIY type and cheap I made my own taping tool after looking at some posts here.

                I had some issues with the tape not laying down and pulling straight in the curves, one reason was as I mentioned all the curves are very slightly cambered so the taping tools base is not flat on the track. I tried a couple of things, the best a was a small piece of the soft fuzzy half of Velcro stuck on the bottom of the base plate right after the tape came from the guide groove. That worked great for about half a lane before the friction of the tape heated up the Velcro and it started curling and sticking to the tape. The final fix was to take a piece of the waxy paper backing for the cooper tape and tape it to the top and let it follow the copper tape path to the bottom across the soft Velco. So now I had a pressure pad and a slippery surface, man this thing will lay tape fast now!

                Following JayBirds advice I ordered 5 rolls and taped all four lanes with 4 rolls leaving the long straight for last, this worked out great because that was also where the bridge was so I could take it out to tape under it. This also leads into the lane change area and I wanted to have the taping all figured out before tackling that area.

                This is how I'm doing the power hook up, using brass 4-40 screws counter sunk through the tape.

                After that was done I screwed down the bridge for the last time, filled the holes and seams. Painted it and tried to blend the tarmac effect paint to match the rest of the track. Did the final taping to finish all lanes. As I said earlier I designed and built the track to AC2 specs, the reason for 4 lanes. But for right now I'm planning on running only the inner 2 lanes on 12 volts DC. The copper tape is just continuous and the lane change area is none functional for now. Note the the third lane in that area as short cut for that lane to avoid the cross over slots.

                Here is where it's at now. After all this time I had no idea if I would even like the way the track would drive with a car till this weekend. I temporarily hooked up a power supply and drove a couple of cars around for a couple of dozen laps on Sunday. I like it but had to really watch it and not start really testing and send a car to the concrete, no guards or borders yet. Need to get all the wiring done and some controller hookup stations then start on the scenery.

                Having admired a lot of great tracks that have been posted here and long time model railroad fan( I never made a layout but have trains) This will be a fully scenic'd track and the theme I'm going for is the great true road circuits of the '60's, maybe more European. Now having said that I can't add ton of sculptured plaster detail, way to heavy. I'll be using a lot of shaped Styrofoam, spray foam and something light weight to blend with the track edge.

                Thanks guys for all the information and hope I have contributed something in return for someone. Updates will be a lot slower now being in real time when I have chance to work on it.
                Last edited by KJProX; 08-08-2012, 08:55 PM.


                • #9
                  Great job! Looking good.


                  • #10
                    Had a little time to try and figure something out. In my short little car testing I quickly realized I need retaining walls in some key spots. Inside areas I can use guardrails, fences ect. I know most people use masonite for fascia/ retaining walls, but I can't add that much more weight. So I'm going to try something different, 20X30" foam core board. The kind sold at Dollar Tree store for yes $1. It's cheap, easily replaced and super light. I'm using a wide head screw to hold them to the tin stud frame, for the seam between them I'll use packing tape. The track side of the walls will be blended into the rest of the scenery.

                    My question is what is considered tall enough above the track surface to keep cars in the track and off the floor. I was thinking 3" but open to suggestions.


                    • #11
                      I think you're 3" should work fine for the size cars you're running! Track'l looking really good!!


                      • #12
                        Love the layout. Looks like a blast and I don't normally like bridges as they tend to disrupt the view. With scenery it will look great!


                        • #13
                          Nicely done, sir!


                          • #14
                            Not being an expert on AC2 racing I don't understand how passing is done if that is a 4 lane / 4 car track I don't see how it works. I have to ask how do you pass as it appears there is one long squeeze for the lanes.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by greenjo2 View Post
                              Not being an expert on AC2 racing I don't understand how passing is done if that is a 4 lane / 4 car track I don't see how it works. I have to ask how do you pass as it appears there is one long squeeze for the lanes.
                              There would be lane changer flippers inbedded, but right now those places are just taped over. That part of it is down the road. The squeeze area brings it to the lane changers. Two passing lanes and two racing lanes. Check out there web site for a compleat explanation of how it works, it's really pretty cool.


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