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Mini Wheels Plumber's Nightmare refurb


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#1 Pablo

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 07:40 PM

Finished November 2012:

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Here's where it all started:

Somehow, somewhere, I acquired this old workhorse roller. I plan to give it a full refurb.
Rick Thigpen recommended a McLaren M8 body, and a D size Mura Endbell drive motor.
I'm currently working on assembling the parts.

My plan for the motor is a Mura "A" 2 hole can, can in a can shim, Mura endbell, modern Speed FX 16D mags/endbell hardware, and a Thorpe .007 16D 26 wire arm, refurbished by Fast Ones.
Airgap will be about 18 thou. Not sure yet if this combo is going to work, but that is the direction I am working.

As usual, all help with avoiding mistakes is appreciated. I am, after all, only a mechanic, not a vintage expert. But I think she will look pretty sweet once I "pabloize" her.

I'm planning to EBay this car; need cash for dog food for the Chihuahua :laugh2:

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Paul Wolcott




#2 Jairus

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 08:05 PM

Fun project!
I have a few of those chassis collected too and have wanted to play with a period correct 67- 68 era plumber Can-Am too If I can ever find the darned time.

Jairus H Watson - Artist
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#3 endbelldrive

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 08:18 PM

That looks like an original scratchbuilt chassis and not one of those mass produced Phaze III/Cobra jobs...kool. It should look mega sano after you pabloize her! :good:

Bob Suzuki


#4 mdiv

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 08:44 PM

Pablo,

Looks good so far sir!

Do you have a motor ironed out yet?

Mike

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#5 Pablo

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 08:50 PM

Mikey, I'm working on the motor. Read my second paragraph.
Not sure yet if everything is going to mesh.
Paul Wolcott

#6 Bill from NH

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 08:54 PM

Should be a fun project! :)

Bill Fernald
 

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#7 Pablo

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:18 PM

Thanks for the encouragement, Gentlemen ! :D

I found a correct Mura endbell with a nice new bushing. The can bushing looks new. The bushing to bushing alignment is perfect; it passes the "shaft falling through with gravity" test. I stripped the black paint off, installed the can in a can shim, and centered the mags (I switched to "C" mags) using the Thorpe arm. Then JB Welded the mags. Shaved off the top of the Mura endbell to prepare for the Speed FX hardware......

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#8 Hworth08

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 10:15 AM

Right hand drive. Be sure it's a counter clockwise arm if the motor is endbell mounted as that frame probably was.
Don Hollingsworth
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#9 Jairus

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 12:23 PM

Hey, note that milled opening on the motor bracket so a large 10t gear can pass through.

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#10 Hworth08

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 01:40 PM

Or to fit a Champion endbell.
Don Hollingsworth
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#11 Pablo

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 04:43 PM

Thanks Don, that is the plan, CCW at EB, EB mount. (No Champion EB, though)
The Thorpe arm is timed correctly for it.

Time to soak off the Krazy Glue (holding the Goat Boy slug in place) and pop it out.
Then I'll check the spacing and the airgap. This is where I keep my fingers crossed :D
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#12 Bill from NH

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 07:44 PM

Here is my somewhat limited knowledge of Mini Wheels. That Mini Wheels chassis may or may not be valuable. I believe Mini Wheels was another NY/NJ raceway in the era of Nutley. They sold slot car parts, maybe even complete chassis under the Mini Wheels label. They sponsored pro racers, whose names escape me at the moment. While not as large as Nutley, their products rarely show up for sale. Pablo's anglewinder is a twin-railer with the plumber arrangement on the rails, in front of the front axle. A few months ago there was an earlier Mini Wheels 3-rail anglewinder on ebay with the plumber hinge on the rails behind the front axle. These two are the only Mini Wheel chassis I've seen in years. One of the elder NY/NJ pros, such as Tony P. or Bob Emott, perhaps would be a better authority on Mini Wheels than I, since they probably had the opportunity to race along side the Mini Wheel racers.

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#13 Jairus

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 08:03 PM

Dang it Pablo... I spent yesterday evening pulling bits together for my own '69 Can-Am McLaren. Except mine will never run since the mint condition blue Riggen foam tires are too dry to play with.

Just wish I could find the time to restore the chassis....

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#14 Bill from NH

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 08:07 PM

Jairus, do you have a photo of your chassis?

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#15 Pablo

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 08:22 PM

Good news:
The slug popped right out after soaking the Krazy Glue microdots off in Acetone. Leaving the JB Welded magnets in place within the can in a can shim. Spacing was "almost" perfect. I had to shave off 15 thou from the face of the can bushing, then shorten the EB side of the can by about .063. It was a blessing in disguise, as the motor was too long for the chassis anyway. Mr. Belt Sander came in handy. Not many fancy tools here at the Wolcott man cave, just some screwdrivers and a hammer :laugh2:

At this point, I have the beginnings of a powerful motor. The bushings are perfectly aligned, magnets are set at .530 ID, arm is spaced/centered, and the EB hardware appears to mate perfectly with the face of the commutator.

Next challenge is Speed FX EB hardware, and priming the can.

Now, where did I put that doggone zinc chromate ? :laugh2:

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#16 endbelldrive

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 08:25 PM

They sold slot car parts, maybe even complete chassis under the Mini Wheels label. They sponsored pro racers, whose names escape me at the moment. While not as large as Nutley, their products rarely show up for sale. Pablo's anglewinder is a twin-railer with the plumber arrangement on the rails, in front of the front axle.


Chris Vitucci and maybe Phil Rubin used to run for Team Mini Wheels back in the late 60s. :scratch_one-s_head:

Bob Suzuki


#17 Bill from NH

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 09:46 PM

Thanks Bob! Those were the names I couldn't remember. I was at a couple races Phil Rubin also attended in the early 70's. :) Do you recall if the Mini Wheels raceway was owned by Chris's family?

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#18 Pablo

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 07:04 PM

Speed FX hardware with Mura vintage spring holders worked well.
Everything lined up to my satisfaction.
The Thorpe arm is spaced and centered absolutely perfect.

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Next step is to prime n paint the can ........ :)
Paul Wolcott

#19 dc-65x

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 09:16 PM

Hi Pablo,

Building custom motors is fun isn't it! :victory: What color is that big old can going to be?

OK..... I can wait until you post it a pic :D :good:

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#20 Pablo

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 09:31 PM

Textured Black :)

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#21 Jairus

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 10:21 PM

He painted the shim... huh.

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#22 Pablo

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 08:45 AM

Is that a turn off ?
If I was absolutely sure all the parts would mesh perfectly, I could have painted the can before installing the shim, but I wasn't.
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#23 Jairus

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 09:11 AM

Not necessarily, I've just never seen it before.
And, yeah... I usually paint the can first and then assemble the motor. The hard part is waiting for the paint to cure.

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#24 tonyp

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 11:49 AM

Thanks Bob! Those were the names I couldn't remember. I was at a couple races Phil Rubin also attended in the early 70's. :) Do you recall if the Mini Wheels raceway was owned by Chris's family?


Mini Wheels in Highland Park NJ was owned by Tag Powell. That is where the Tag's Mags name on the Mini Wheels Tire line came from. They had 4 Engleman tracks like most raceways in the area.

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#25 Pablo

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 08:04 PM

I'm glad you are back posting, Tony, I missed you :)

Koford Bigfoot brushes were pre-radiused and notched for shunts, new Champion light red springs used, and she started right up at first hint of power from the Wrightway. In my experience that is always a good sign of a motor being "happy". :D She was broke in dry for 20 minutes at 2 Volts. Sounds very healthy and smooth. :good:

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