We suggest an inspection of the race course is the first order of business. This may sound too simple, but a dirty track will definitely affect the performance of every slot car in a negative way. Non magnet cars will tail-slide more easily and strong magnet cars will act more erratic than ever. To ensure fair competition and the best possible performance we suggest a quick vacuum job of the track. In most cases this will remove any room dust and more importantly any metallic braid or tire debris (rubber, silicone, etc.).
Clean track is also critical to the life of slot car racing motors. Dust and metallic particles from pick-up braids can impede the flow of cooling air around the motors and clog up bushings and armatures. These same elements can collect on lubricated parts of the chassis. Just think about it for a second! Gears, bushings, axles, and any lubricated area of your car acts like a dust and debris magnet!!
Our first choice for routine maintenance is a dusting brush attachment on your shopvac or home vacuum cleaner. A damp cloth can also be used but we don’t recommend it because lint can be more destructive than dust. If a damp cloth is your only option, be careful not to litter the track with lint from your cloth. SCX and Ninco plastic tracks are quite abrasive by design and cloth can leave lint behind very easily.
Many slot car enthusiasts like to improve performance of their cars. Lap times are generally the measuring tool used to check for better performance. We suggest any serious test session must be done on a clean track for reference purposes.
Tips on Magnets
Many people ask us how can they make their favorite “non Fly” car go as fast as a real Fly car. It doesn’t take people long to realize that a Fly slot car is one of the fastest out-of-the-box cars on the market. But, most people don’t realize that the strong Fly magnet is what makes these cars so quick. Fly motors are no faster than any other stock motor. Replacing a car’s magnet is the easiest and most effective way to improve lap speeds.
So, to make your favorite “non Fly” quicker you need to swap to a stronger magnet. We could debate which magnet is best all day long, but it boils down to finding a neodymium magnet that “fits” the underside of the car you are modifying. Ninco makes a very nice round neo magnet but it is rather thick. And, you can buy Fly neo magnets too. Yet, some of our favorite neo magnets are by Slot-It and Professor Motor.
Finding the right “neo” magnet and the right placement under the car takes experimentation and tuning. We can make some general recommendations, but every car’s weight and balance is different so we recommend you experiment with double sided tape before you glue a magnet in place. Some people like to place the magnet in …