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New raceway coming to Chicopee, MA!


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#1 hfs3

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 01:33 PM

Slot car racing is set to return to the Springfield, MA, area after a ten+ year absence! After a few near misses we believe we've finally found a great location for our tracks (Ogilvie-made King and Hillclimb). We are going to set up in Chicopee, MA, where we'll have 3,000 sq ft of enclosed space on the ground floor in the Cabotville Industrial Park, complete with plenty of parking. The two million+ square foot complex was named a Historic Site, and is conveniently located near the center of Chicopee with quick and easy access to Rt. 391/Rt 91.

The lease is set to be signed tomorrow and we tentatively expect to be up and running by 12/1. The name of the raceway is the Pioneer Valley Slot Club, a member's club that will occasionally be open to the public (e.g. race days, recruitment). Members will be encouraged to bring friends, who will pay a small track fee to play, applicable towards an annual membership. We want to be active in the slot car community, bring more people back into the hobby, and hope to become a host in the NECC series.

Why have a membership-based raceway? Many track owners have a common complaint: racers don't support their local track. The underlying reason seems to be operating costs for an accessible, visible, and safe location are generally too high to support anentity that earns low $ per square - compared to retail stores that produce far more $/sq' than any track.. For many track owners, track time, parties, and counter sales don't provide sufficient revenue to cover costs. One of the key points in our plan to keep this raceway viable over a longer term (to have place to play with our toy cars) was to secure a space that fit our budget. It has taken some time, but we are finally happy. PVSC members support the raceway by joining; low overhead greatly reduces the reliance on the sale of part/supplies; raceway sticks around long term!

Area raceways have come and gone over the years leaving racers with pix boxes full of stuff, the desire to race, but nowhere local to race. In our case, area racers have to drive over an hour to the nearest raceway. This is fine for events, but for many it ends up being a lot of driving for practice/tuning, and many racers eventually drop out. Once again, local racers will have a place to resume their hobby. Going through this process, one of the most common comments we hear is, "I've got to see that! Let me know when it's up and running." That tells us there are lots of people out there who've never seen a large commercial slot car track just waiting to be hooked. Posted Image

We'll post pics of our progress, as we get started painting/cleaning the space (this week).

Feel free to write/PM for more details.

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King





#2 hfs3

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 12:06 PM

Lease is signed, so we're ready to get going. Will take pics from beginning to end and post them as we make progress. More to come!

Change to previous post: We are shooting for 11/1 opening day!

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#3 Dominator

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Posted 23 September 2011 - 08:35 AM

That's awesome news!

A motor is only as fast as the chassis it's in.
 
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#4 hfs3

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Posted 23 September 2011 - 10:49 PM

Thanks, Dominic!

Spent a long day scraping paint, vacuuming dust, and clearing cobwebs. We've made enemies of a few spiders, that's for sure. These old factories were made to last forever, the sub-flooring (ceiling) is 4" thick hardwood. Another week of removing flaking paint and we'll be ready to spray our hearts out. Will post pix tomorrow...

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#5 hfs3

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Posted 25 September 2011 - 11:28 AM

Finally got some time to get some pix to post, so here goes!

View from the main door looking in:

Day-1-01.jpg


And a panoramic view of the room, made from two pictures. Next time will setup on a tripod...

panorama.jpg


The room is 40' wide x 75' long, which is 3,000 sq'. The King will go on the right side and the Hillclimb on the left. There's plenty of room for driver's pits, and we'll drop lots of AC so people can plug in soldering irons, etc. We're aiming to be finished by next Sunday with removing loose paint from the ceiling, removing long unused screws and nails, cleaning up the drywall, and masking all sorts of stuff so we can start painting on Monday. We'll be using a HVLP sprayer so it should only take 1 day to finish the ceiling and walls. Once that is done, the floor gets a freshly rolled on coat of paint. When all is sufficiently dry, we'll cart the tracks in and start making them ready for racing. The King will need the most work, and since the Hillclimb needs almost nothing it will go up first.

More to come!

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#6 hfs3

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Posted 26 September 2011 - 09:21 PM

In the morning, we exfoliated another span of the ceilng and took down all sorts of things hanging from it. After lunch, we cut out five of the six pipes that ran along the right side (75'). Good thing we had a Sawzall. The pipes were solid steel and were used for the old steam heating system, so they were not needed. When they were cut open, they'd release. either clear or black, sooty water that we collected in buckets. One pipe that runs below the windows was left so we could secure various cables (including one Romex) that were mixed in amongst the pipes. Now that the pipes are down it's a lot brighter, and we can open the windows as well as clean them. I'll take another picture tomorrow and post it after we finish for the day.

Here's the first draft of the club logo:

pvsc-logo.png

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#7 hfs3

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 07:31 PM

Picture showing yesterday's progress:

Day-2.jpg

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#8 hfs3

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Posted 27 September 2011 - 10:00 PM

Progress today included cleaning up the filth on the floor from the steam pipes, stringing the communication and power wires to the remaining steam pipe, painting the walls with Killz, and also started masking the yellow gas pipes:

Day-3.jpg


Tomorrow we paint the columns, i-beams, windows, exposed brick, and the office walls with Killz, complete the masking of the yellow gas pipes, tie up the remaining wires & cable, and then continue exfoliating the ceiling. A friend has offered their compressor, so by Thursday we'll have two of them for blasting the loose paint from the ceiling.

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#9 hotrodlarry

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Posted 28 September 2011 - 10:43 PM

Nice to see a new track going up in this area.
Larry Swift

#10 hfs3

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Posted 29 September 2011 - 06:46 PM

Nice to see a new track going up in this area.


Thanks! I'm looking forward to seeing racers on the tracks, too, It will be the first time in a long while this area has had slot racing. :)

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#11 hfs3

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Posted 29 September 2011 - 07:05 PM

Started the day by sweeping the floor, picking up stray paint chips and dirt/dust that has lain there for quite some time. Primed the columns and the bases, primed 3 of the 4 windows and surrounding brickwork; finished priming the office area and took up the stinky, nasty indoor/outdoor carpet. Tomorrow we'll finish priming the windows, prime the walls all the way down to the floor, and scale/paint the i-bars. By then the improvement in appearance will be noticeable. Unfortunately, our landlord is away for a few days and doesn't want us doing anything with the ceiling for fear of disturbing a sprinkler head (major hassle with the fire department if that happens). So, we'll finish paint the office if we run out of things to do. Pix tomorrow!

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#12 hfs3

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Posted 01 October 2011 - 08:32 AM

Yesterday, we finished priming the walls, including the brickwork, and got the windows cleaned off and primed. It's amazing how much brighter the room got! We didn't get to the i-beams, but that is next up on the list. Here's another composite picture showing the progress to date:

Day-5.jpg


Once the beams are painted, we can continue prepping the ceiling. Still on track to blast the room for Tuesday!

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#13 Pete13

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Posted 04 October 2011 - 10:56 PM

In the morning, we exfoliated another span of the ceilng and took down all sorts of things hanging from it. After lunch, we cut out five of the six pipes that ran along the right side (75'). Good thing we had a Sawzall. The pipes were solid steel and were used for the old steam heating system, so they were not needed. When they were cut open, they'd release. either clear or black, sooty water that we collected in buckets. One pipe that runs below the windows was left so we could secure various cables (including one Romex) that were mixed in amongst the pipes. Now that the pipes are down it's a lot brighter, and we can open the windows as well as clean them. I'll take another picture tomorrow and post it after we finish for the day.

Here's the first draft of the club logo:

pvsc-logo.png



I personally like the logo, it's brite but not over the top, and I can not wait till you get everything up and running, thank you for bringing slot car racing back to this area!
Peter Fontaine

#14 hfs3

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Posted 05 October 2011 - 10:52 PM

I personally like the logo, it's brite but not over the top, and I can not wait till you get everything up and running, thank you for bringing slot car racing back to this area!


Thanks, Pete! I'm thinking of changing the oval in the background to the silhouette of a race car; overall, not much different. :) We're excited to see slot racing back in this area again - everyone we've talked to is psyched!

Henry

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#15 hfs3

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Posted 05 October 2011 - 11:01 PM

Today we finished priming the beams, final coats of drywall repairs, and masked the remaining gas pipes and a few other things. Below is progress to date:

10-05-2011.jpg


First thing tomorrow the sprinkler heads will be wrapped, the lights will be covered and we'll let loose on the ceiling with the HVLP sprayer.

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#16 hfs3

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 05:29 PM

We got the ceiling done, and it only took ~25 gallons of paint. Didn't have time to take pix as I'm headed off on vacation tomorrow until 10/16. However, I will have access to a computer, and my brother (& partner) promised to send phone pix to me. So, I will no doubt be posting progress even while away. I have to say, it looks quite a bit brighter and cleaner in there. While I'm gone, the drywall repairs will be completed, the walls will be painted an off-white, and the floor will be whatever color the landlord (and good guy) gives us. The office should also be completed, with new lock sets put on the doors and maybe some solid core doors, too.

By the time I'm back, we'll be bringing track in and getting it all set up for turning some laps!

Henry

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#17 PCH Parts Express

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 06:21 PM

Taking those old pipes off the wall really makes the place look better. You guys do good work..........
Scott Salzberg
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#18 Alchemist

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 08:14 PM

That's awesome Henry! I'm excited for you and excited to see another track being put up for racing instead of being taken down!

Can't wait for more pix!

Thank you.

Ernie
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#19 hfs3

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 09:19 PM

Taking those old pipes off the wall really makes the place look better. You guys do good work..........


Yes, it really made a difference! The complex manager commented on how good it looked now with the sun coming in through visible, clean windows. He said he was thinking of having everyone on the south facing side do the same thing. Oh boy... One time he dropped in after I had painstakingly wrapped the gas pipes in blue tape, and asked "who wrapped the pipes?" I thought he was chiding me for being a perfectionist, but he smilingly said "I want to hire you!" We all had a good laugh over it... Seriously tho, my brother is the one with a degree in light construction and has worked in the trade for years, accumulating the tools and learning numerous trade "secrets" along the way. Those pipes would have been brutal without a sawzall and special steel cutting blades. We had to cut them out in sections, but it only took us about three hours. That being said, it was filthy, nasty work that I am not particularly anxious to repeat.

Henry

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#20 hfs3

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 09:29 PM

That's awesome Henry! I'm excited for you and excited to see another track being put up for racing instead of being taken down!

Can't wait for more pix!

Thank you.

Ernie


Thanks Ernie!

The space next to us is a courier service, and the owner was walking by as I was masking something. After some chatting about the rehab, he asked what we doing. When I told him slot cars he had a BIG smile on his face and started asking how much, etc. Once he sees cars buzzing around the tracks... I think the time is right around here for a quality raceway!

Henry

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#21 spudboy

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Posted 08 October 2011 - 08:53 PM

Good luck with your renovations. It is good news to learn another raceway is coming to New England. I hope your buiness model is right and I wish you much success.
Nate "spudboy" Bemis

#22 hfs3

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Posted 19 October 2011 - 02:54 PM

Good luck with your renovations. It is good news to learn another raceway is coming to New England. I hope your buiness model is right and I wish you much success.

Thanks! Things are going well so far. Below is a picture from this morning, before we removed more masking tape and painted the floor around the perimeter:

10-18-2011.jpg

Tomorrow morning we'll roll the floor with paint. We're using an oil based paint, which will take a few days of drying before we can walk on it. As a result, I don't expect to move stuff in over this weekend. Most likely it will be the following weekend before we start moving track over. It's going to take two trips with a 28' truck to get everything moved. The space is about six miles from where the track has been stored, which means we won't be racking up a lot of miles. Luckily, my brother-in-law drives for a local company and has access to such a truck so our expenses will be low (fuel and food). Will take another pic just before the floor is finished and hopefully post it tomorrow night!

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#23 hfs3

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Posted 20 October 2011 - 08:31 PM

Well, we started rolling paint on the floor this morning. The complex manager had given us four 5 gallon metal buckets of oil-based paint to do the floor. One bucket was pretty smooshed up so he asked that we use that one first. It was a lovely shade of Battleship Grey. We ran out of that bucket about 2/3 of the way through the floor. When we opened up another bucket we found it was Olive Drab, not Battleship Grey. All three remaining buckets were Olive Drab. We had no choice but to finish the floor in green. If it's sufficiently dry tomorrow morning we'll roll another coat of green over the entire floor, which will at least leave the floor all one color. If we do paint tomorrow I'll take a pic and post it. It's always something, eh?

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King


#24 Dominator

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Posted 21 October 2011 - 09:00 AM

Sounds like your making great progress Henry! Can't wait till your up and running.

A motor is only as fast as the chassis it's in.
 
Dominic Luongo

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#25 hfs3

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 08:09 PM

Sounds like your making great progress Henry! Can't wait till you're up and running.


Hi Dominic,

Yes indeed, we are making progress. The Battleship Gray didn't dry as quickly as the lovely Olive Drab, which means we won't get the second coat of paint on the floor until Monday. So, here's a pic of the two tone floor:


10-22-2011.jpg


Have to say it looks tons better than it did when we started and it will look just a little better once we get the floor painted in a single color. We are planning on moving track in next weekend!

Henry

Henry Spadoni
Pioneer Valley Slot Club
100' Ogilvie Hillclimb
155' Ogilvie King






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