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#1 burniefloyd

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Posted 12 March 2021 - 08:50 PM

Hello All, new member (obviously) here. I am very confused and hope you guys can help me find some directions. A little background about me. I am 44 and a chronic hobbyist with big plans and a slightly smaller completion percentage... I have a few hobbies but the largest and longest running is RC cars. I enjoy restoring and rebuilding the cars I had and couldn't have as a kid. I don't drive them often so I guess I am mostly a collector who uses them as expensive (and under appreciated) shelf displays. On my RC forum there is a small slot car section for guys to show off their slot collections and I have found myself looking to add some smaller scale cars to my collection. Well this has led to trouble, Looking at the beautiful details on the cars has led me to video's and forums and ebay... oh boy.

Before I start building this giant routed table, that I know nothing about but looks soo simple, I figure I should actually DRIVE a slot car first. Did I forget to mention I haven't used a slot car since I got a Tyco CliffHanger set when I was 10? I know enough to knowI know nothing about what I am about to get into. I know that a lot of what to buy comes down to what I want but I am a little confused about what I have been reading and was hoping to get a nudge in the right direction.

I am not looking for vintage, I have enough hunting for obscure, unfindable parts for RC cars. I want modern, readily available and working. I am leaning towards 1/32 because I like the size and details of the cars. I have not seen a 1/24 scale but I know Carrera tracks can do both so I think they are the best track choice for flexibility. If you read through the rest of my post, do you have any other suggestions for a beginner set? Which online hobby shops are reputable? I know stock levels are low due to Covid but with most stuff showing out of stock I can't tell which sites are legit hobby shops and which are time wasters. I saw someone mention Hobby Lobby but I have never seen anything of interest in the one around here. Ours is one aisle of plastic models and the rest is home decor junk.

Digital vs analog, I have seen people go in both directions but I am not sure why. From what I read, analog equipment is all interchangeable correct? I would also assume that if I were to make the drive to a track or club it would probably be analog as well? I don't know what I am looking for other than to have fun but is lane changing available for both? I don't think I need to worry about pit stops, lap timers or anything like that just yet. I know as a beginner I need to just jump in and buy a kit to get my feet wet, then expand as I grow but just not sure where to start. I am worried a small oval or figure 8 will not be a whole lot of fun and the digital sets seem larger (and out of stock) but since I am not sure which direction to go I am spinning in circles again.

I like building, I read about kits and scratch builds but I have not seen anything modern or am not looking in the right place. I saw another thread with someone asking for newbie advice and one response mentioned "professional" cars not being 1/32 and then a link over here. Are kits only 1/24, is that what they meant by professional?

I did some searching and I am about 1.5 hours away from Modelville Hobby in Massachusetts. I know I should just go up there and talk to someone but it's a bit of a ride and who likes be a middle aged newbie with dumb questions? Once I started going down the rabbit hole I checked with my friends to see their interest level for racing or just to take a ride and it looks like I am on my own. I got one rather abrupt response and the others were too polite to say no and kept changing the subject lol.

Sorry for the long winded post but any help or directions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
Jason Perry




#2 Pappy

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Posted 12 March 2021 - 09:46 PM

Jason,

 

If you want to start with plastic track you can't go wrong with Carrera. 4" lane spacing allows for both 1/32 and 1/24th. You can make it digital or analog (I like analog the best) You can make it two, four or six lanes (maybe eight lanes not sure). Readily available with lots of accessaries. 

 

For cars, I would stick to 1/32 scale Slot It, NSR, Thunderslot or Racer/Sideways. NSR offers their cars with inline, sidewinder or anglewinder configurations right out of the box (I like sidewinder). There's lots of thing you can do to these cars to fine tune them. I also like Quick Slicks silicone tires. Stick with motors that are around 21,000 rpm, you can control them.

 

You can get anything you need from Clover Leaf Racing https://cloverleafracing.com/index.php or Slot Car Corner  https://slotcarcorner.com/


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Jim "Butch" Dunaway
 

I don't always go the extra mile, but when I do it's because I missed my exit.

 

If you don't read the newspaper or watch the news you are ill-informed. But if

you do you are misinformed. 

 

All my life I've strived to keep from becoming a millionaire, so far I've succeeded.

 

 

 


#3 mickey thumbs

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Posted 12 March 2021 - 10:30 PM

Welcome! We were all newbies once. Agree with Pappy about car brands and tires, but beware of “tire wars”  - LOTS of opinions on this topic . I buy from SCC and Cloverleaf regularly. Great guys -  very helpful owner-operators at both places. Other reliable sites are LEB hobbies and Professor Motor. For 1/32 scale home and club racing HRW and slotforuminternational are helpful forums in addition to our crew here at slotblog.

 

As for routing your own track, if I can do it anyone can.  The BSCRA site has a good manual on building a home/club track. SCC carries all the stuff you need for a fun DIY project.


Mike Vernon

#4 Martin

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Posted 12 March 2021 - 10:44 PM

Welcome Jason.

You ask about "Pro cars" These are cars built by racers when the best drivers were getting paid and or sponsored. Mid 60s to early 70s.

They are hand built 1/24 scale and were the latest in tech at the time. They are beautiful fast. But I am bias. 

 

I have put together plastic tracks and 1/32 cars with all the trimmings. I find the clacking of the track connections really annoying. Also I spent many hours trying to keep the track flat. Temperature change is the enemy of plastic. But that's just my experiences. Fun toys but that's it IMO.

I am stuck on 1/24 scale and wood tracks as they give the best diving experience and feed back IMO.

 

For anyone to give the best advice it would be good to know your budget, time and space you have available?

 

Take look at some of the car builds and restorations on this blog and lets us know what floats your boat.


Martin Windmill

#5 Isaac S.

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 10:02 AM

I would agree with Martin and say that vintage cars are the best and as a collector I think you would really like them. But you want modern so I will give you what limited I know about that. 

 

For more of a hobbyist like you (and me to be honest) I would go for 1/32. Companies like Carrera, Scalextric, Fly, and others would be good. You can race these on a 1/24 commercial track but for a home track I would use a Carrera 1/32 track, very good quality. Modern 1/24 cars are not very "beautiful" but are still very fun to drive and race competitively. I would recommend the Home Racing World forum for modern 1/32 cars. They have great "hop-up" articles and their youtube channel is also really good. But if you want to REALLY have fun driving and racing do 1/24. 

 

But still, I wholeheartedly recommend vintage cars. SOOO much funner. And it isn't too difficult, just spend $20-30 on a few Strombecker cars and race the heck out of them. Once your hooked then you will get into the old 1/24 cars and it depends on what you like from there. I prefer "pro" cars and scratchbuilds but many like the Cox, Classic, and more. Some get pricey but you can get many of them pretty cheap. You start hunting when you get into the rare stuff like Champion, Mura, Pactra, and others. 


Isaac Santonastaso

#6 Revtor

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 11:21 AM

Hey Jason, welcome.  These guys give good advise!  Only thing I'd add is try to find some local guys with 1/32 tracks and see what they're running.  It's always more fun to try different tracks and have a crew that you get to know.  By making a setup that is in sync with your neighborhood slot heads, you'll be able to bring your cars over to their tracks and they can visit yours.  lots of fun!

 

~Steve


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#7 burniefloyd

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 12:48 PM

Jason,

 

If you want to start with plastic track you can't go wrong with Carrera. 4" lane spacing allows for both 1/32 and 1/24th. You can make it digital or analog (I like analog the best) You can make it two, four or six lanes (maybe eight lanes not sure). Readily available with lots of accessaries. 

 

For cars, I would stick to 1/32 scale Slot It, NSR, Thunderslot or Racer/Sideways. NSR offers their cars with inline, sidewinder or anglewinder configurations right out of the box (I like sidewinder). There's lots of thing you can do to these cars to fine tune them. I also like Quick Slicks silicone tires. Stick with motors that are around 21,000 rpm, you can control them.

 

You can get anything you need from Clover Leaf Racing https://cloverleafracing.com/index.php or Slot Car Corner  https://slotcarcorner.com/

 Thanks Jim, I seem to be struggling finding any carrera sets in stock at the moment but I appreciate the cars brands. I have already filled my shopping cart with potential purchases lol.

 

You mention to aim for 21,000 rpm for control, is the throttle for slot cars proportional or do it auto brake when you let off the throttle? 


Jason Perry

#8 burniefloyd

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 12:51 PM

Welcome! We were all newbies once. Agree with Pappy about car brands and tires, but beware of “tire wars”  - LOTS of opinions on this topic . I buy from SCC and Cloverleaf regularly. Great guys -  very helpful owner-operators at both places. Other reliable sites are LEB hobbies and Professor Motor. For 1/32 scale home and club racing HRW and slotforuminternational are helpful forums in addition to our crew here at slotblog.

 

As for routing your own track, if I can do it anyone can.  The BSCRA site has a good manual on building a home/club track. SCC carries all the stuff you need for a fun DIY project.

Thanks Mike, routing my own table (while definitely a ways down the line) is something I would like to do just for the challenge. Any reason to buy a new tool is a good one!  As for the tire wars I will keep on the fringes.


Jason Perry

#9 Alchemist

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 12:52 PM

Belated "Greetings and welcome" Jason!

 

Along with the other Brands of 1/32 slot cars, I've been interested in Revo Slot 1/32 Slot cars.

 

I really the detailing of these cars and the chassis design.

 

As for performance I do not have any experience with this brand (yet!) but wanted to add Revo Slot to the "buffet" of brand recommendations.

 

If you do a search for "Revo Slot" quite a few reputable online stores have them, as well as Revo Slot having a FaceBook page of their own - if you participate in the FaceBook site.

 

I know you will enjoy your new hobby and please keep us informed as well as sharing pictures please!

 

Thank you.

 

Ernie


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Ernie Layacan

#10 Modelville Guy

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 12:53 PM

If you want to check out a slot car raceway. Modelville Hobby in Ashland MA is not a real long drive from most of RI.

 

Open Saturdays and Sundays 1-5. Tuesdays - Fridays 4-8.

 

508-881-7616


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Richard Payne

#11 burniefloyd

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:06 PM

Welcome Jason.

You ask about "Pro cars" These are cars built by racers when the best drivers were getting paid and or sponsored. Mid 60s to early 70s.

They are hand built 1/24 scale and were the latest in tech at the time. They are beautiful fast. But I am bias. 

 

I have put together plastic tracks and 1/32 cars with all the trimmings. I find the clacking of the track connections really annoying. Also I spent many hours trying to keep the track flat. Temperature change is the enemy of plastic. But that's just my experiences. Fun toys but that's it IMO.

I am stuck on 1/24 scale and wood tracks as they give the best diving experience and feed back IMO.

 

For anyone to give the best advice it would be good to know your budget, time and space you have available?

 

Take look at some of the car builds and restorations on this blog and lets us know what floats your boat.

Thanks Martin.  Are those pro cars they are referring to restorations of the cars from the 60's or modern chassis and tech? Beautiful fast is definitely beautiful, not sure I will get that just yet on the beginner track.

 

Time wise I have plenty of time with Covid of course. My only daughter is in her first year of college so it's just me with the wife and dogs. We are both working from home still and she going to school to fet her masters a few nights a week.

 

Space I am starting in a 4x9 area in my garage. I have a spare bedroom (2 if the kid decides she has had it with doing chores) and a spacious basement with some dampness issues to potentially expand to in the future. 

 

My budget... This is tough, I think starting would be 500-1000.  I know just like RC cars it can get expensive fast but I hope this is a decent starting point to have some fun. 


Jason Perry

#12 Pappy

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:14 PM

 

You mention to aim for 21,000 rpm for control, is the throttle for slot cars proportional or do it auto brake when you let off the throttle? 

Jason,

 

The reason I say to stick with 21,000 rpm motors is because it is real easy to over power these 1/32 scale cars, especially on plastic track. You can use a 25,000 rpm motor on some tracks but that's about as high as you can go, they are just to fast to keep in the slot or drive smoothly. On my new track I can get much faster laps with a 21,000 rpm motor than I can with a 25,000 rpm motor because I can control it and drive smoothly.

 

I also agree with Ernie, the Revo Slot is a real good car. I forget about them because I don't have any. I raced them in Connecticut a couple of years ago and they are fun to race. Right out of the box they run good, not much you can do or have to do to fine tune them.


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Jim "Butch" Dunaway
 

I don't always go the extra mile, but when I do it's because I missed my exit.

 

If you don't read the newspaper or watch the news you are ill-informed. But if

you do you are misinformed. 

 

All my life I've strived to keep from becoming a millionaire, so far I've succeeded.

 

 

 


#13 burniefloyd

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:15 PM

Wow, you guys answer fast, thank you all for your help so far! It is really helpful being so new and unfamiliar to the hobby.  

 

If you want to check out a slot car raceway. Modelville Hobby in Ashland MA is not a real long drive from most of RI.

 

Open Saturdays and Sundays 1-5. Tuesdays - Fridays 4-8.

 

508-881-7616

 

Thanks Richard, I am going to take a ride up there today.

 

This is a great site, thank you guys again. I have more questions like: what is a WOMP? But I'll hold them until later  :D


Jason Perry

#14 Arne Saknussem

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:15 PM

Personal opinion here, bearing in mind that I race 1/32 and 1/24 cars at the speed-crazed moron level.

 

Butch is absolutely correct about 1/32 Slot.it, NSR, Thunderslot, and Racer Sideways.  I would add Scaleauto to that list as, like Carrera, they offer 1/24 scale cars.  Fly has come and gone in many guises with varying levels of mechanical effectiveness.  Some were very good, but most weren't.  The fact remains, however, that Fly cars look great and cover the widest range of models.  The best bang for the buck is Slot.it (IMO).

 

You can always scrounge up a small fleet of 'vintage' slot cars from ebay or facebook sellers and while they may offer a cheap way to start, you will end up tossing them all in the trash once you have a modern car from one of the above mfrs.  Replacing the stone age tech from the 60s & 70s (wheels, tires, etc) will cost you more than buying the more modern car from the get go.  I have retained a few Scalextric cars from my youth (50 years ago), but for sentimental reasons only.


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#15 Pappy

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:24 PM

 I would add Scaleauto to that list 

That's another one I tend to forget because I don't own any. A Scaleauto won the Michigan 24 hour race a couple of years ago against Slot It's, NSR and Racer/Sideways cars. The Slot It Porsche GT1 in a sidewinder configuration is a fantastic car. Very stable, sturdy, reliable and easy to drive.


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Jim "Butch" Dunaway
 

I don't always go the extra mile, but when I do it's because I missed my exit.

 

If you don't read the newspaper or watch the news you are ill-informed. But if

you do you are misinformed. 

 

All my life I've strived to keep from becoming a millionaire, so far I've succeeded.

 

 

 


#16 Arne Saknussem

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:34 PM

Tires... oh boy.

 

Sponge tires, silicone tires, urethane tires, silicone coated sponge tires, and the various brands and versions thereof.  Virtues and vices for each.  It kind of depends on how close to surgical cleanliness you want to maintain.  I'm sure many opinions will be expressed.  I like sponge rubber... mostly because I can trim and true a set in a few minutes whereas silicone tires take waaaaaay longer.

 

The guys here are right about motor rpm.  I used to race regularly on a 155-ft routed track.  We often ran 30k and higher rpm motors because the turns were quite large in radius and the straights exceeded 30 feet.  The same fellows raced on 60-ft tracks and the quick setup was 20 to 21k rpm.  


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#17 Randy Tragni

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 01:35 PM

All of the advice here is excellent. I can only offer my opinion. 1/32 is a perfect in between scale. The cars are detailed and fun to drive without being over powered.
My personal favorites (if stranded on an island) would be slot it. Lots of quality and performance for the buck.
Why not route a small test track. Maybe 4 x8 mdf sheet, some paint and copper tape to get your feet wet.
Try to find others in your area to race with. If you build it they will come.
Last, if you can't find people in your area there are rally cars. One lane mountain pass and race the clock.
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#18 Brian Czeiner

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 03:23 PM

Just my two cents. Considering your available starter space, perhaps you want to consider something used from Ebay, Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. There are always used Carrera tracks on my local marketplace. I expect the same would be in your area.  At least you wouldn't invest new price dollars only to find you went the wrong direction. If it is your cup of tea, well..... then max out the credit card. It is always better to ask forgiveness than permission. Happy racing.

 

 

I saw this one is on Ebay just now and it fits your 4x9 starter space. I hope the link works.

 

.ebay.com/itm/Carrera-Slot-Car-Set-1-32-Scale-Breakaway/133686477475?_trkparms=aid%3D111001%26algo%3DREC.SEED%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20160908105057%26meid%3Df8c89660b12647989bc4cb3d3ad8ed5d%26pid%3D100675%26rk%3D2%26rkt%3D15%26mehot%3Dnone%26sd%3D353227377643%26itm%3D133686477475%26pmt%3D0%26noa%3D1%26pg%3D2380057%26brand%3DCarrera&_trksid=p2380057.c100675.m4236&_trkparms=pageci%3A17f02b66-8439-11eb-8742-5ad343e0c2bb%7Cparentrq%3A2d3c52f01780a69f890f577bffd1d7f4%7Ciid%3A1


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#19 Brian Czeiner

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 03:28 PM

https://www.ebay.com...4.m46890.l49292

 

 

try again


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#20 MattD

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Posted 13 March 2021 - 05:47 PM

No bad info here.    All these guys know what they are talking about.    Me, a little maybe.      If you are looking at a 5 X 9 space,  would probably not consider any 1/24 racing.     Until you have the funds and are ready to build a bigger track in the basement, I would just stick to 1/32 rtr cars or custom built if you want to go that way.   

 

Carrera track is the best, period.  It is also the widest and takes a lot of table space.     If you just stick to 1/32, there were  some high quality sets made by Artin a few years ago and they were 4 lane extended figure "8"s.     That track was 3 1/2 inch lane spacing, like great  Monogram and Revell track in the 60's and the slot was deep enough for commercial depth guide flags.   It is out of production, but I saw a full nearly new set on Ebay for under $150 a couple days go.  Great for your budget, good track and options to set up any design you could think of.     Actually a couple Carrera cars are good to start with.  They seem to be pretty tough and  are a good starting point.  All the other brands are as good as the guys here have suggested.   A switch to urethane tires is most common among the 1/32 home racers a.nd removal of magnets   

 

The Artin sets did have two power supplies which lets you run each lane from it's own supply and the controllers were functional.

 

Scalextric Sport Track is a decent 1/32 track, I think Ninco may also be wide enough and have slot spacing  that is acceptable.   3 1/2 lane spacing is really best for 1/32 racing, any narrower cars are are really crowded in the corners.

 

Spend a couple weeks looking  for  Carrera, Artin, or maybe Scalex Sport used set on the internet and you will find a decent deal if you keep watching.   You'll still have a little money left to buy a couple cars.    You'll be setup fine for 1/32 home racing with out spending a ton of money..      Do that and learn from the forums and then you may want to rout a 1/24 track, or you may decide to stay with 1/32.

 

 Slotblog is a great forum.  The Home Racing World is pretty much dedicated to 1/32 home racers.    No commercial track racing talk there.   Those guys are all basement racers with wood or plastic 1/32 stuff.  There is plenty to learn, but take time and don't jump too quick.  

 

Artin is the company that makes all the 1/43 sets at cheap prices, so when you are looking be sure that any Artin you find is  1/32 scale.


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Vintage Cox Slot Cars

#21 rvec

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Posted 14 March 2021 - 08:21 AM

Perhaps you could contact a private raceway somewhat close. How about this one Nantasket Beach Raceway - Hull - Massachusetts - Slotblog It would give you a flavor for 1/32 racing on a wood track. My track is located in a finished shop and I love it.  At some point, the basement would be ideal. Plenty of room for a custom track  


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Rich Vecchio


#22 Revtor

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Posted 14 March 2021 - 09:52 AM

I will also add, that in HO scale you can fit even more track into your space and the parts are even lower cost.  And the racing/tuning/driving thrills are all there.  

 

If you do go to modelville, don't forget to check out their HO side of things. from traditional T-Jets (nostalgia class) to tuned T-Jets "Fray" cars, to magnet cars "how do you see your car" to hand made brass "gravity" cars.  lots of variety, cool stuff.  But small.  How are your eyes?


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#23 burniefloyd

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Posted 14 March 2021 - 07:03 PM

I just want to thank everyone again.  I went down to Modelville with my wife yesterday and we had a blast!  I like the 1/32 and the fact I can have something in the house but I saw those brass chassis cars and even though I have no clue what they were I wanted one!  I am going to keep researching as I want something to build but google searching "Slot car Kit" isn't really working out yet.

 

I am going to take the used track suggestions but my local craigslist is dry but I have been watching eBay and a few other places.  Iam one of those no Facebook guys but my wife has it so I started poking around the marketplace.  I have already reached out out to Matt's FB marketplace suggestion and I am following that Carrera eBay auction from Brian.  I don't mind used items so all your suggestions have really helpful as I was hesitant because I couldn't tell what was complete and what was missing key components.  

 

Thank you guys for all your help so far and I will post some pics soon!


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Jason Perry

#24 burniefloyd

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Posted 14 March 2021 - 07:23 PM

Here are my first 2 cars, my wife also got one but I am not allowed to open it  :shok: so no picture.

I also added a shot with them in front of a few cars in my home office, also known as the spare bedroom or soon to be slot car room.

Attached Images

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Jason Perry

#25 Alchemist

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Posted 15 March 2021 - 09:57 PM

Hi Jason,

 

Your enthusiasm is infectious!  LOL

 

The #76 car looks ready to run at the Talladega Superspeedway!

 

Thanks for sharing Jason - looking forward to more pictures (as well as the wife's car - wink-wink) LOL

 

The "tank" look very intimidating.

 

Thank you.

 

Ernie


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Ernie Layacan





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