Way Out West HO Racing

HO (AFX) Slot Car Racing in Perth, Western Australia

Some easy ways to go faster... and/or have even more fun.

  1. Clean Your Tyres Run your tyres down the sticky side of some masking tape.  Expect a lot of black gunge to stick to the tape.  Now run your car and notice how much better it corners and accelerates.. repeat often.
  2. Adjust Your Pickups Check the wear pattern on the pickup shoe.  Bend slightly so pickup wears along entire length of contact surface.  Improves power to the car.
  3. Clean Your Track If your track has not been run for a couple of days, it will have collected heaps of dust particles.  Even clean tyres can't grip to this, so use some Windex or similar sprayed on a rag to wipe the track down.  Run a few laps to get the power rails shiny again.
  4. Build a LapTimer/Counter This is the only sure way to know if you are actually improving your lap times and driving skills.  Anyone with a computer and a soldering iron can build one of these for about $10..  It's astounding how much more enjoyable and purposeful HO racing is when using an electronic timer.  Any skill improvement or tuning tweak can be quantitated in terms of lap times, and 'formal' races over time or laps can be run with several people.  When racing alone, it's time to beat your Lap Record...
  5. Crashing Doesn't Win Slot car races are usually run over a time period (eg 3 minutes per lane) and the winner has the largest accumulated lap total.  Each time you come off it costs you a couple of laps - slow down to stay on for better results.
  6. Run Tomy AFX Super G+ Largely regarded as the best handling and easiest to drive of the readily available HO racers.  Some Life Like Fast Trackers are reasonably quick too.
  7. Use Silicone Rear Tyres Probably the most beneficial modification to a standard car.  Also one of the cheapest.  Requires a flat surfaced rim, which means using Tomy AFX Turbo car rear wheels or aftermarket flanged rims.  For tyres see the Tassie AFX link (Links Page) or for a complete rear axle incl. silicone tyres visit the Nomad Raceway link.
  8. Run a Lightweight Bodyshell The injected plastic body on standard cars accounts for much of their weight.  A vacuum formed polycarb or similar body greatly reduces both car weight and centre-of-gravity height.  Gives much better cornering, acceleration and top speeds.  Check the Links page..
  9. Increase Track Power If you reckon you're more driver than your track needs, then look to increase the available track power and see if you can still stay on!  Simplest method is to run a Tomy transformer/terminal track combo PER LANE, eliminating the power surge to one car when the other flys off the track.  For more voltage and amps, check out a (cheap second hand) laptop AC adapter.  You are looking for anything around 16-20V with at least 3 Amps.  Wire the standard Tomy AFX power plug in place of the computer jack and go really quick....
  10. Wire your Track for Brakes