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American Model Raceways track designs


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#51 Dooner

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 06:01 PM

Steven,

My '65 King had a hump built into the main straight.
Tom Backes




#52 mwjsone/page

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 07:28 PM

Thanks, Tom. I have read a few post that the newer cars didn`t like the bump would deslot and have seen talk of taking the hump out.

I pick up my black this weekend.
Steven Page

#53 Phil Irvin

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 10:46 PM

:shok:

The original orange had one too... :wub: .. I loved that track...

PHIL

#54 Tex

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 11:58 AM

Those humps in the straights were a deliberate "feature" of many AMR tracks... you had to actually "drive" the straightaway!
Richard L. Hofer

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#55 Prof. Fate

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 12:16 PM

Hi,

If memory serves, the blue "King" had a flat straight, with the hump, it was called the "red Imperial".

Fate
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#56 Dooner

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 12:59 PM

Sorry, Rocky, but my 1965 Blue King did in fact have a hump in the straight, and yes, Tex, you did have to "drive" the straightaway. :)
Tom Backes

#57 Tex

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 07:16 PM

As poor a driver I was, I cut my slot racing teeth on a red Imperial! I wouldn't change a thing; that which makes the competition nervous is my ally. Great memories.

EDIT: And it was "humps"... plural.
Richard L. Hofer

Remember, two wrongs don't make a right... but three lefts do! Only you're a block over and a block behind.

#58 slotcarone

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 07:33 PM

:D The red tracks had two distinct bumps in the straightaway that may have required blipping but if I remember the King tracks had a small drop in the straight but didn't reqiure lifting at all.

Mike Katz

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#59 Keith Levine

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Posted 09 November 2009 - 10:41 AM

In the 1960s, the largest track at Tom Thumb Raceways in Evanston, IL, which was one of the largest slot-car racing centers - if not the largest in the Chicago area - was, I believe, a blue track that was similar to the Emperor 220, but I don't recall that it had the two over-unders. It was an American Model Car Raceways track. It was definitely not the King 155 or the Sovereign 220. The main straightaway was incredible long, the main bank turn was very steep, and there was a long secondary straightaway. When slot car racing began its decline, this was the first track that Tom Thumb removed to start to make room for a line of crafts.

Does anyone remember this track at Tom Thumb, or did anyone see it elsewhere, or, best of all, does anyone have a picture of it, at Tom Thumb or elsewhere?

Keith

#60 Ramcatlarry

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 01:51 PM

Call the store. Tom Thumb is still in Evanston and the owners have talked about getting an HO track or something else, again.

Larry D. Kelley, MA
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#61 don.siegel

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 07:11 PM

.... and ask for Glen, he's the slot car guy at Tom Thumb's, assuming he's still working there.

I went there kind of late in the day, but don't remember anything like that track; however, I also found an old article on the place in one of my hobby trade magazines - I'll try to find it for you... always thought they just had the usual variety of American tracks.

Don

#62 Keith Levine

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 07:52 PM

I don't know if Glenn is still there - it's been two or three years since I've stopped in, and Glen isn't getting any younger - but it wouldn't matter. Glen has "only" been there since 1971. I'm quite sure that the crafts department had already displaced the blue track by then, and the racing was mostly the birthday party scene.

Last time I asked Glen about the owner, he told me that they lived in Colorado now - I forget if he said it was Art, Art's ex-wife, or their children. I think we need somebody who patronized the place back in the day. There were so many, they must be some who are still involved.

Keith

#63 MSwiss

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Posted 10 November 2009 - 09:03 PM

I'm not sure if he still works there but you could try contacting Tyree Phillips at Novak Electronics in California.

He both raced and worked behind the counter at Tom Thumb.

Mike Swiss
 
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#64 don.siegel

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 07:20 AM

Found it! From the November 1966 issue of Craft, Model & Hobby Industry, a trade magazine. This is actually a report on a 24-hour endurance race run at Tom Thumbs - won by Mike Staskie and Don Rose, in a Pittcan powered car - six out of the eight cars used this motor, the other two use Hemi 300s...

Anyway, here are the pix, and there was indeed a Super LeMans track, along with what looks like the usual American lineup - is that an Engleman? Hope this jogs some memories...

Don

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#65 Darkron9

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 09:35 AM

The last picture at the bottom sure looks like a 220' Engleman to me.
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#66 Keith Levine

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 10:31 AM

The last photo is it! It's probably been 40 years since I've seen that track. I only remember referring to it as the blue track, but I see that the proper name - at least that Tom Thumb used - was the LeMans.

Don, are you saying that it was also known as the Engleman, or are we referring to different tracks? In any case, I don't know that there was a bigger, faster track anywhere - the two long straightaways were incredible. Because of its size and the fact that there weren't that many to begin with, I would doubt that there's one still around. And wasn't Tom Thumb a fantastic raceway!

Great find, Don. The photos and the article bring back a lot of terrific memories. Thanks!

#67 MSwiss

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 10:43 AM

Stan Engleman was another track builder/ a competitor to American Raceways.

An "Engleman", over the years has become the slang for that style of track with six approximately 180 degree turns.

I've never heard the term a "Super LeMans" in the last 30 years.

Mike Swiss
 
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#68 tonyp

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 10:46 AM

Engleman was a major track builder. The Engleman tracks basically all had flat turns with a steep high banked turn at the end of the straight.

American, the other big track builder, had mostly slightly banked turns and the main bank was not as steep.

At least on the east coast all the Engleman tracks used copper tape while the Americans used braid.

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#69 Larry Mattingly

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 11:47 AM

I think I recall racing on 300' tracks in Pittsburgh (Tom Thumb North) and the same style track in the Harrisburg, PA, area.

Name of the builder won't come to me...

LM

#70 MG Brown

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 11:51 AM

Tom Thumb is still a hobby shop in Evanston (across from the Post Office), but as you might guess, the tracks are long gone.

Last time I was in there they were trying to clearance out what few SCX slot cars and home sets they had left.

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#71 Prof. Fate

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 11:57 AM

Hi,

I have only seen Englemann tracks with braid. I haven't run on Jim Hunnicutt's track in San Antonio in about 25 years, but his 185 is still in operation.

There was a 220 in Salt Lake in the '60s during the 6 oz car period. The steep bank was steeper than the others I have seen, almost vertical, and came down into a 'deadman" that was flat. Once, a monster motor pro car came down the bank, launched and punched a hole in the plate glass window at the front and ended up in the middle of "State street" which, pre-freeways, was the main north-south highway for the state. It was alike a sitcom. Brakes screeching, horns honking, shattered glass everywhere.

A local legend that we thought was very funny!

Whatever happened to Stan Engleman?

Fate
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#72 don.siegel

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 12:10 PM

Let's see, here's the American "Purple Mile", which was also 220 feet, like the Engleman, a scale mile in 1/24. (picture in a French pop sociology book about rebellious youth...)

Posted Image

Another interesting American track, with the steering wheels, and the Mila Miglia fiberglas track, very similar to the Engleman.

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And I think this is the 300 ft track you were referring to, but strictly an East Coast product I would guess. This may have been the largest commercially produced track in the country as far as I know - anybody hear of a longer standard track?

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The Mesac track, "only" about 190 ft in its longest configuration, but still in many ways the most impressive....
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And another candidate for the largest raceway in the country, the Aurora raceway out on Long Island, with 7 Show Girls at the Grand Opening, count 'em, 7... No track shots, but sometimes you have to sacrifice for the greater good...

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#73 Larry Mattingly

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 05:26 PM

Don,

Thanks for the photos...

Yup... Indy 300. R-Geo Rick triggered my memory... Built by All-Tech?

I remember winning an eight-hour Indy Car enduro race on the one in Pittsburgh.

Ahh... the memories.

LM

#74 Larry Labounty

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Posted 11 November 2009 - 06:29 PM

Tony,

Were Elmsford tracks by Al-Tech? Didn't think they where Englemans.

#75 tonyp

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Posted 12 November 2009 - 08:39 AM

Positive it is an Engleman. The track had to be custom fit to the building to fit between the wall and two poles... That is why the turns are so tight.

"And if my thought-dreams could be seen they'd probably put my head in a guillotine. But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only." - Dylan

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