back to article Monster Scalextric Formula 1 circuit to go under the hammer

A rather impressive Scalextric track designed by F1 commentator and former driver Martin Brundle, featuring "the best corners, chicanes and sections" from 2015 Formula 1 circuits will go under the hammer later this month in aid of the BBC's Children in Need. Suffice it to say, the winning bidder will need an extremely large …

  1. a well wisher

    Bit of a pain if you spin off on the far side of the track - but suppose an F1 driver shouldn't do that

    1. Khaptain Silver badge

      Jean Alessi was renowned for his gravel exploits.... he knew every gravel pit by heart

      1. AndrueC Silver badge
        Joke

        Spinning off into a gravel pit? What's one of them then - some kind of primitive run-off area?

        <sad smile>

        1. Simon Harris Silver badge

          "Spinning off into a gravel pit?"

          Didn't Dr Who and Blake's 7 used to do that every week?

    2. Simon Harris Silver badge

      "Bit of a pain if you spin off on the far side of the track"

      Not if you add a remote controlled crane to the set!

    3. DanceMan

      If you`ve never spun out, you`re not trying hard enough.

    4. druck Silver badge
      Happy

      Go Alex!

      > Bit of a pain if you spin off on the far side of the track

      That was always a bugbear of Scaletrix as a kid, but I now have a 2 year old boy who will spend hours running after cars and putting them back on track for me.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Go Alex!

        > Bit of a pain if you spin off on the far side of the track

        It was always fun to work out how to make the _other_ guy spin off by releasing the throttle at just the right moment - the power supply (or battery pack(*)) was current limited to about 1.5x what a single car could draw so popping your throttle off would result in a voltage spike and "unexpected acceleration" for the opposition.

        (*) Assuming cheap Neveready D-size dry cells which didn't like the heavy current draw at all. Using Nicads could easily result in a cooked throttle controller and motor (and did, so I only tried that once).

  2. TimR

    Right, that's the wood ordered for the new shed....

    1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
      Joke

      Looking at the size of that thing, you'd probably need the New Forest for it...

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Anyone know how the track is powered? Probably multiple transformers spaced round the track as the long slot conductors are probably a bit ohmy.

        1. Alan Brown Silver badge

          "the long slot conductors are probably a bit ohmy"

          They're more than adequate to run this kind of distance. The problem was always the track-end connects - sandpaper and a high-current ohm-meter(*) was an essential part of any kit with hard-wired links if you were the dedicated sort.

          (*) Avo 8 was good. Electronic and DMM units don't push enough current to find the bit of problematic oxide and would register a track as OK even though it didn't work so well in service.

  3. jabuzz

    It's flat!!!

    Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge, which is one of the most famous corners in motor racing and Formula 1.

    1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: It's flat!!!

      Well it can't be completely flat. It's a (highly) modified figure of eight.

      P.S.

      It's also proof that growing old doesn't require growing up!

    2. Jedit

      "Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge"

      it's not flat(!!!). The circuit is a figure eight, so it couldn't be flat without terrain rises - which are clearly visible in the photo anyway.

      I can't tell from the angle if Eau Rouge is on the circuit, unfortunately.

      1. DynamoCL

        Re: "Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge"

        Agreed - you can see the elevation change for the crossover. But you can still have a figure of 8 with no elevation change, courtesy or a crossroad piece:

        https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=scalextric+crossroads&safe=off&espv=2&biw=1084&bih=791&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0CAcQ_AUoAmoVChMIh9HpnOilxwIVgVYaCh3j2wZl#imgrc=_

        1. chivo243 Silver badge

          Re: "Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge"

          "a figure of 8 with no elevation change"

          Figure 8 racing is a form of banger racing in which automobiles race on a track that purposely intersects itself, increasing the risk of collisions. Figure-8 racing is most common and popular in the United States and Canada, in contrast to the oval-track banger racing seen in Europe.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Figure_8_racing

          It's even better when they race school buses!

          1. Vic

            Re: "Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge"

            Figure 8 racing is a form of banger racing in which automobiles race on a track that purposely intersects itself, increasing the risk of collisions

            Not at Suzuka, it isn't. One part of the track goes over the top of the other.

            Vic.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge"

        Eau Rouge is the "kink" half way up the left-hand side.

        Playing too much Grand Prix Legends taught me that it's the elevation change which makes that such a difficult corner, rather than any tight turn. It's often hard to spot on plans of the circuit.

    3. Vic

      Re: It's flat!!!

      Looks flat to me so there is no Eau Rouge

      I went through Eau Rouge on a pushbike. I nearly had a coronary at Les Combes. That's proper steep...

      Vic.

  4. Fihart

    Ah those days...

    Slot Car Racing (please don't call it Scalextric as there were other, better brands) was my teen introduction to soldering and re-winding electric motors (they usually caught fire).

    Though we graduated to Revell and more exotic cars, never had more fun than with the cheapest brand Airfix whose track we continued to use as it was smoother than the Scalex polythene stuff.

    1. stucs201

      Re: other, better brands... ...they usually caught fire

      Well that's an interesting definition of 'better'.

      1. Simon Harris Silver badge

        "they usually caught fire"

        So quite an accurate reproduction of some F1 cars then.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Go

      Re: Ah those days...

      Slot Car Racing

      I'm with you on this. When I was a kid my racing mates and I built our own chassis, wound our motors and even sanded our foam tyres to the desired profile.

      Our local club circuit was eight lanes wide and over 100 feet long. The track was constructed from hand-cut hardboard with hand-laid copper conductors. The banking was reminiscent of Brooklands.

      On a club night you could guarantee there would be plenty of marshals to replace crashed cars back into their slots. The club even held a 24 hour race once a year.

      This was very different to beast to Scalextric.

    3. Dapprman

      Re: Ah those days...

      Was airfix cheaper ? It was meant to be more reliable.

      I had a set that my father bought when I was born (more a base set and extras) and which I got when I was about 10 (just remember coming down stairs one birthday morning to find it set up). The cars would work with Scaletrix, but were faster - great in a straight line, not so great in the corners when driven by a young teen.

  5. Ol'Peculier

    Bit of history, this was created by Sky to promote this years F1 coverage, I assume it was shown as a pre-race but I try to avoid watching their coverage.

    More info, and a video of Brundle racing against Telegraph hack is at

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/sportvideo/formulaonevideo/11449657/Who-wins-on-Martin-Brundles-ultimate-F1-circuit.html

    You'll need a 9ft x 9ft sized shed by the way.

    1. Velv Silver badge
      Headmaster

      9m x 9m, and that's just the track. Need to leave space around the outside to get to the cars that have come off. It's in the Telegraph article.

      I know Martin isn't the tallest chap in the world but even I can tell this is bigger than 9ft x 9ft!!!

      1. Ol'Peculier

        Ooops. My mistake. Need to move some more boxes around in our warehouse now.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Awesome, but....

    It's just not TCR!

    1. Crisp Silver badge

      TCR was way better than Scalextric

      But just like the Betamax vs VHS war, the less technologically advanced solution won.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: TCR was way better than Scalextric

        TCR looked great in the ads but not so good when I tried it. The cars were too small.... still just my opinion, glad to know someone liked it.

        Mind you, hasn't the newer Scalextric included some of the features of TCR?

  7. uncle sjohie

    Men will always be boys, only the toys become more expensive.

  8. Little Mouse
    Boffin

    Shocking

    Back in the 70's I put a penny on the track, licked my finger, then pushed the penny along with the wet finger whilst simultaneously squeezing the accelerator gizmo with my free hand.

    In my defense, I was quite young at the time.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Shocking

      Didn't you try licking the track? What's wrong with you :-)

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bushes!

    Didn't The Register use Bushes in LOHAN?

    1. Hans Neeson-Bumpsadese Silver badge

      Re: Bushes!

      Not sure - I tried to check, but....let's just say it's best not to Google for "lohan's bush" when you're behind the proxy server at work...

      1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

        Re: Bushes!

        And I thought such model planes used trees (as landing catchers) rather than bushes?

  10. Steve Crook
    Coat

    Meh!

    It's only two lanes...

    1. 2+2=5 Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Meh!

      > It's only two lanes...

      Scalextric do a part that merges two into one... It's called the 'Maldonado'

    2. Irongut

      Re: Meh!

      More room and chance of passes than in real F1.

    3. IsJustabloke
      Thumb Up

      Re: Meh!

      it could be a digital layout... my layout has only two lanes but up to 6 can race at any given time, there are lane swapping track sections activated by a button on the grip.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Meh!

        "it could be a digital layout... my layout has only two lanes but up to 6 can race at any given time, there are lane swapping track sections activated by a button on the grip."

        To make it more F1-like, it should be 1 lane with, maybe, one very short overtaking lane.

  11. hatti

    Cornering

    The cars always fly off at the bend

    1. Annihilator

      Re: Cornering

      At full-pelt, yes. That's the challenge. Of pretty much any car racing thinking about it...

    2. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Cornering

      By smearing washing up liquid on the track in the corners, you could simulate power oversteer as the car stayed in the slot, but pivoted around the brushes, going round the corner sideways.

      1. kiwimuso

        Re: Cornering

        @werdsmith

        Ha! I could do that, no trouble, without the washing up liquid! Just don't ease off for the corners!!

  12. Deltics

    That's No F1 track...

    At 1:32 scale that 45m track length is only a scale lap of 1.44 km

    Never mind the 2015 season, the shortest F1 track in HISTORY was well over double that length and there are minimum standards in this area. 3.5km to be precise. It also falls well short on track width - minimum 12m, 15 on the grid straight. At 6" / ~15cm width, you need a minimum 6 lane (3 track) layout.

    Sorry but as is the case with Brundle's commentary and coverage of F1 itself, others have done this before and far, far better.

  13. The answer is 42

    Mines bigger than yours!

    Not the biggest by a long way; in the 70s Fylingdales in Yorkshire was isolated by snow in winter so to amuse the UK and US staff had the biggest Scalextric layout. (Well they would, wouldnt they). A friend of a friend made a fortune fixing US kit that had been plugged into our mains.

    1. Ol'Peculier

      Re: Mines bigger than yours!

      Where did they keep it, never heard anybody mention it (though I did have a sheep walk into the snooker room in the Sergeants Mess once, you don't get that at the Crucible!)

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019