2009 Survey

FarrOut Slot Car Club

2009 Survey Results

Below is the summary of all your responses to the club survey.  Again this year the people who responded represented 89% of all races done so far this year.

Next Email will be on what to vote on tomorrow.


A. Attendance:  

  • We are fine: 3 more racers than last year; one more person on average; more people racing more often.  Except for me 🙂
  • I prefer to race when there are 16 or less racers.  More than 20 is quite a lot.
  • 12-16 is ideal. the flow tends to slow down a bit with a larger attendance.
  • This is more statistical than question, but the size works well; I still say the more the merrier
  • Looks like we’re maintaining a pretty steady ratio of 16 per race; we’re getting some new guys interested, so there may be more in the new year.
  • We seem to be doing fine. Any more racers could be a problem for the three or four “Hurry-up!” people. We may have a few too many aces now. Hopefully that won’t discourage the others, as much as it does me
  • This is good 
  • Interesting statistic, but so what? Is there some thinking about a limit? Some venues can accommodate more and some less so the decision should be left to the hosts.
  • I think the numbers are good given the venues. I enjoy how open the club is to new members.
  • I am happy to see that most everyone’s greatest fear did not occur. For a while there had been a few that questioned whether the club would stay the way it was if Stephen reduced or stopped coming to races. Obviously it did not happen, that being said he and others who once were at every race were still missed when they were not there [Dictator’s Note: I will toot my own horn on this – the true test leadership is how people act when you are not there, not when you are there.  Recognizing of course that things can always be better 🙂 ]
  • Glad to see we are holding steady on attendance.  I know I have missed a few races this year.  It is great fun, and a nice way to spend the (non-football) Saturdays.
  • It is what it is….  And at the moment it is good. We always seem to have a few fresh faces and lose very few of the ‘establishment’.  Until we are ‘drowning’ with new members, or in a ‘desert’ with so few…  I don’t think we have a problem or need to worry

B. When And How Often:

  • I cannot see us doing more than 24 weekends a year and Saturday afternoon seems to work fine
  • Perfect as it is.
  • two Saturday’s a month with early starting times work well
  • Every 2 weeks is just right.
  • OK
  • This is still a good format, I just travel a lot and race days have fallen on my work days
  • Our frequency is fine; I could go for more, but hey, I see enough of y’all as it is..
  • Every other Saturday is fine
  • Every second weekend is good.  However, sometimes it seems so rushed, having to run two classes.  We are always in a competition mode.  I really liked what happened at the NINCO Reginals at Chris Chan’s where we had one race for that day.  We prepped our cars and helped each other and Michael helped three or four of us tune our cars right there on the spot.  And then we raced.  I do not think that kind of thing happens enough.  Usually someone is yelling for people to come and Marshall and race.  We should think about having a few times on the schedule where we have one race and a tuning/prep period.  We would end up stretching the season out a bit longer but I think it would be good for the club.
  • 24 races, 3 visits per host is perfect.  Maybe we could have additional “Theme” races (LeMans/Sebring)?  A real 12 hour endoro?
  • First and third Saturday seems to work well. I like 11:00am practice and noon start. Any later seems to get the “Hurry-up!” people even more agitated and that messes with my fun.  Someone mentioned to me that it causes him a real problem when race dates are changed. I’m sure he is not the only one. Hopefully this year we can get a complete calendar early, and stick to it. This should be less of a problem than last year since Rene seems to be decidedly out. Hopefully if there are mid-year changes, due to host commitments, they can just be venue swaps and not date changes
  • I like the schedule of 1st and 3rd Saturdays as is
  • I am happy with the current date & time pattern we have now. My only request would be to see if we could somehow limit the number of three weeks between races that we have. I love racing with you all I just dislike waiting that extra week before we race again
  • I think our schedule is great.  Keep it the way it is.
  • Why mess with success?  It seems adaptable when need be, (the odd need to change a date) and the club members seem up to the challange of meeting any late changes!

C. Where We Race: 

  • Ideally, I want to keep 8 tracks each hosting 3 times.  However I think adding Dennis makes sense and it opens opportunity for more people to be “exposed” to us but that brings it to 9 and I am not sure how I would allocate the races in that case.  My tracks in preference order are: 
  • Stephen, Nigel, Michael, Bruce & Stan – notwithstanding the issues I can see a gem there, Chris, Craig’s & Gary’s – just too short for me
  • Rene’s, Nigel’s, Michael’s, Gary’s, Stephen’s, Chris’, Craig’s, Bruce’s, Stan’s
  • I like where we race and Stan’s will be new soon
  • I like the tracks.  I’m hoping to sell mine before Christmas and build a new routed digital track–hopefully using Slot.it oXigen, but we’ll see about that.  My only comment would be that it would be nice to have more routed tracks in the club.  Orange County is too far to go for me, and a 3-laner would be difficult if we had a lot of people.  Dennis’ track, however, looks really cool.  I’d be happy to have some different types of tracks in the club.  Anyone want to build a real large hill climb/rally car track for club events?
  • Sad to see René’s track seem to drop off the schedule. Mine will be routed in the new year. Would be great to race on Dennis’ track, if we can convince enough folks to make the drive
  • The suggested venues are fine; temporary races should also be allowed by anyone willing to host (even if it’s a nonstandard number of lanes, like 2 or 3).  [Dictators Note: anyone can schedule a non-championship race any time so as long as it does not conflict with a posted club race date.  Given number of permanent track and that all hosts are wanting more race dates we won’t be doing races at temporary tracks.]
  • I am sorry to be enable to put mine in the list since my room is really small..
  • I like the mix of tracks we have now. I would not want to drive to Orange County to race, especially South OC. We have plenty of tracks closer by. I think that hosting should be confined to people who race in the club regularly, not just those who race when we use their track.
  • We have a world class club. Tracks should be maintained to a world class standard. A leaf blower is not a track cleaning tool. Don’t try and make your own light bar with bathroom fixtures 🙂
  • Like the variety of tracks. Glad Stan has given up on Artin. Too bad about Rene
  • I think we should add Dennis Sampson’s track to the schedule. We should also consider Bill’s track, if not for the whole season a possible specialty race
  • I think some of the hosts need to tighten up on their their track hosting regarding reliability.  There have been too many issues with dead spots and power on the plastic tracks.  There also seem to be issues with smooth running.  Some guides hit misaligned track sections and cars deslot.  We need to stop trying to fix tracks the day of the race.  Fix the connections (solder those pesky track sections together underneath if necessary) and cover your tracks and clean those rails the night before.  And ALL TRACKS SHOULD HAVE CONTINUOUS COLOR CODED LANE IDENTIFICATION.  This may seem an affront to the issue of a toy track vs a real looking road course, however a continuous color coded lane will cut down on Marshal error in the heat of a race.
  • I’m glad Stan is seriously looking at replacing his track. It’s a great venue, and I hope we can keep it once he replaces the track. If Dennis is open to hosting races, we should consider it, but keeping in mind it is only three lanes. How will that affect the time it takes to run a race?  Ordinarily this wouldn’t be a problem, but given the location and travel to and fro, it could make for a long day. Perhaps we can have a vote on it (if it is indeed offered for consideration) after visiting in December [Dictator’s Note: actually it does not change things at all, just reduces race time by 25% (1 lane out of 4) since you run as many heats as there are attendees no matter the number of lanes.  As it happens, Dennis won’t be able to be a host in 2010 so we do not have that option.]
  • All the tracks have been great and if new ones are available I’m up for giving them a try. Look how it has worked out at Craig’s track this year
  • I like all of the tracks we race on.  Each is different and a new challenge.  Thanks to the owners for the time on each!
  • I enjoy visiting all the tracks, of course I have my faves ( I miss Rene’s) but can’t wait for the changes in Stan’s track which I think will polevault it right up the list of favourite venues.  As for the various states of different tracks…  Every track and venue (and host) has its different vices and virtues. By and large…  I am very happy
  • Obviously Dennis’s is a big contender. I would like another go at Bill’s with his format ( I missed the last one) maybe a team race?  Will Rene’s track be available next year.  What about Gary?  If not…  How are we going to allocate races?

D. How We Race:  

  • I think we should drop the team races which would allow us to still have 24 race days BUT now have 8 classes, not 6 and run each class for a total of 6 races instead of the 7 races we do now (6 short races plus one team race).  No one is willing to loose classes and there are lots more out there that could be raced, hence my radical suggestions.  Additionally I am now open, having spent 7 years whipping the troops into shape, to extending the heats to 4 minute heats. 
  • Longer heats Classes are ok, but I’d like to see a newer car class like DP or NASCAR COT.  Team races are ok
  • What do you like? The fun What do you want more of, what don’t you like? Longer heats, I hate F1  Do you have new ideas for race formats? How about a break out rule that sets a lap time that everyone can hit, but is set so no driver leads by a large amount and takes the huge leads we see from some away, giving maybe a closer race. Kind of our own restrictor plate rule. I saw this done last week in KY and it worked very well. Kept everyone close.   We could have race days where we do only one class but have 10 min per lane YES, we could only have team races NO, we could just drink. I will have to learn how. J  I seriously think we should drop the team races which would allow us to still have 24 race days BUT now have 8 classes, OK not 6 and run each class for a total of 6 races instead of the 7 races we do now (6 short races plus one team race).  What do you think? Dump the team race. I like longer races and don’t really like the frustration of having a real slow person eat up a lead
  • Our format is OK, but we should decide on 6 classes x 7 races with teams or 8×6 without; I still want to try the 2-man team with dedicated pit stall and minimum/maximum driving requirement (minimum 20% of laps, maximum 60% of laps) for classification; maybe an unofficial race after the last meet.  Let’s also keep the Drivers’ Championship; that’s cool (and I STILL need to beat Smalley!!)
  • I like it as it is. I enjoy the team races (because they’re fun — reference club rules #1 and #3), though I’d come with or without them.
  • I like the idea of one class, longer races. I hope we keep the team races—it allows guys who don’t normally make the podium to have a chance to feel that they’ve done well; that being said, I also like the idea of more class possibilities
  • Way to much math for me. Don’t drop the team races. Gives us one more thing to complain about and that makes it fun
  • The 10 minute per lane is a cool idea…It can be a good way of focusing on one prepared car instead of 2…I like that. I like the team race as well and I don t think that 8 classes is good…To many cars to prepare…
  • Well, I’m getting better at it, but I can’t keep up with the big-three which could soon be the fast-five, leaving me with sixth and the others with less.  I like the team races. The Drivers’ Championship is okay, and keeps all of us from thinking others have much better cars than us. I think six classes is plenty. Longer heats would be more fun, but would probably require an earlier start time.
  • I think the races should be longer, at least four (4) minutes.  That way a racer has a chance to catch up after a deslot
  • I would do away with the loaner car (Drivers Championship) race
  • Points system, check: Team races, check; Drivers Championship, whatever
  • I would hate to see the Team Races and/or Driving Championships dropped. It’s great to get a chance to be on a team with other club members. Team spirit and all that crap. If other classes of cars could be accommodated without doing away with these, I’d say let’s try. I would also be in favor of one class per day on occasion, but for longer lane durations. 
  • I do think it would be a mistake to get rid of the team races though. I think promoting team spirit in the club is important, and the team races do that and give the lesser racers a chance to feel like winners when their team comes in 1st.(as has happened to me many times). I believe we have more fun at the team races, as it is not as cutthroat, everyone against everyone. Just my thoughts
  • I would love to have a four or five minute heat, but the only way that will happen is with the club going old school. Not too far old school maybe 1-3 years backwards. When we racing back then we allowed anywhere from 30 sec. to 1 ½ minutes of practice between heats. Once the racers were called for that heat the race director would turn on the power and the racers had that time to practice before they raced. Time was up tires were cleaned and we went racing. We didn’t have the 4-7 minutes between heats we have now.  I know we sometimes don’t have enough marshalls to allow this and were using this time to talk to each other and catch up. But is it logical to take 4-6 hours to run on average two 16 heat races in that time?  [Dictator’s note: good point: 16 racers = 16 heats, over two classes that is just 1hr 36 mins of racing or 2 hrs if we have 20 racers and 2 1/2hrs to 4 1/2hrs wasted…..]
  • Please keep the team races and driver’s championships.
  • It would be nice if we could get the races started on time.  Seems like there is a number of times when Race Time is scheduled for 12 or 1 and we sometimes don’t start for up to an hour later.  And as much as I like you guys and enjoy the races, that delay makes for a long day.  If we could be more timely at the start, that would work well in speeding up the races.  That would probably also help with the timing in between heats, which does take too long as well.  As for the time to run the heats, 3 minutes is good for me.  With ADD, any longer is best shared with my lucky teammates on the Team Races. Sorry guys 🙂
  •  It really is a successful format – I don’t think we should mess with it!   Points work well.  If  we scrap it…  We might as well build a ‘Bobs Big Boy’ in the middle of all the tracks and just have a slow parade around it!

E. Points: 

  • It is fine as is and thanks to Thomas and Craig for keeping it all updated
  • It’s fine as is
  • Points system works for me
  • Our system is OK, we should also consider FIM (pays down to 15th place; 25-20-16-13-11-10-9 etc.) or modified F1 where half of the points go to per-lane performance and half to overall race result (so 80 points possible for a sweep–10 for each lane and 40 for the race win; race result pays to 16th place on modified F1 scale; you’ve seen an example of this from me.).. if we go 8×6 then you must race at least 3 in the class and count the best 4; in the Drivers’ Championship, need to race at least 4 times and count the best 6; in the overall, need to race at least 24 times andcount the best 32 (general idea is race at least half, count the best 2/3)
  • Seems to work 
  • Great
  • Thanks, more math
  • The points system seems to work great. It rewards attendance and keeps the championships exciting all year long. There is the little problem of three wins being unbeatable, only risking your score from there, but no one seems to be playing that game
  • The point system seems fair. As we near the end and I see that I have a chance to move up as I drop races it will be interesting to see how things change, and keeps me coming back for more.
  • Please keep them, I like to see how poorly I have run the current year compared to the year before. I also want to thank Thomas & Craig for recording the information and placing it all on the website
  • I like the points system….just wish I had more.  Please keep the team races, I think they are great. 

F. What We Race: 

SFJ’s basic philosophy on choosing classes – the following are a must: at least 4 body styles; handle well without magnets (without requiring weight – although for clarity I am not opposed to weight); have equivalent performance throughout the class; be easy to police which means common motors, axles, gears, wheels and easily identifiable tires within the individual class; be based on something reasonably real; be easy to setup; not be repetitive. 

Class Comments

  • ’64-’74  Le Mans: Good Class
  • Ninco GT1  Le Mans : NC-1 is a problem new replacements are not available at a reasonable cost if you can find them. NC8 is not a replacement. I heard BWA has a good replacement at a fraction of the cost. I will try to get a few for testing
  • Ninco 1950/60’s  Le Mans : Love the class, but the NC8 is not a real option to replace the NC-1  I have 5 NC1 type replacement motors coming for us to test as a replacement. They cost $5.ea. If they work, then they will be readily available and cheap replacements. Michael, I’d like to give you a couple to test and confirm or refute their ability to replace our NC1
  • Slot.it Group C  Le Mans :  I could do without this class, but it’s ok
  • SCX F1 1970/80’s: OK, but cars are a problem finding for some. I could do without it for a class that is supported by a current production car
  • Drivers Championship: This was good
  • Other classes: 
  • 1. A NASCAR class. Old or new cars. Monogram and Carrera old or SCX new. with mag
  • 2. Monogram class. Affordable current production cars. May not be good against other brands, but against each other could be good. CAN-AM stuff possibly
  • 3. No F1. Sorry, I’m not an open wheel fan. We spend to much time marshaling.
  • 4. add magnets back to Trans/Am 
  • Other class we currently have are ok as is.

This grouping is from two voters

  • Don’t EVER get rid of the Ninco GT1. 
  • Love the Ninco 50’s/60’s Le Mans. 
  • Keep the SCX Formula 1’s. 
  • I like the Slot-It group C, can’t drive worth beans, but keep the class. 
  • I would like to see the Cartrix classic Formula 1’s as a class. 
  • Never thought I ‘d say this, but I’d like to bring back the SCX 4WD. Anything else is open, if you want to run 8 classes.
  • 64-74 Le Mans is a great class, but the Slot-It’s really belong in a class of their own, they’re just superior to the other cars. Allow weight in the 64-74 Le Mans class. 
  • Don’t like the Trans-Am. They remind me of NASCARS, boring and hard to drive. 
  • I like the idea of a driver’s championship class. I think it worked well this year.
  • First, keep the magnets on the fridge.  That said, if we’re going to 8 classes, keep what we have, bring in a 50s/60s Formula 1 or bring back SCX 4WD, and bring in a dedicated truck class using the same ones each time (I’ll buy 2 more Flys so we have 4, and I’ll ask Mike to help with the prep.)  
  • #1 1950/60’s Le Mans w/ Ninco Chasis: Non-magnet weighted class. Must run NC-1 or NC-8 motor. All cars are allowed weight.
  • #2 ’64-’74 Le Mans:  Weight should be allowed for non-Slot.it cars.
  • #3  Scalextric Trans AM: .
  • #4 I’d be interested in adding some rally cars–either regular or 4WD 
  • Don’t really have preferences beyond those classes
  • Well..I would like to see 1950’s formula 1 Scalextric..
  • I like the 1970’s formula 1 as well from Scalextric that can be mixed with the new Fly williams. The Fly March 761 is also great and why not can be also be mixed with these…
  • I miss 70’s 80’s Rally such as Fly 911, Lancia Beta, Renault 5, Alfa romeo, Scalextric Ford Cortina or SCX Renault R8 or Alpine 110 etc..
  • Then I wish we could insert a cute class such as Revell, SCX, Scalextric Trabant, NSU, Simca 1000, Fiat 500, Mini cooper…this could be great.
  • We keep 1950’s Ninco, Fly 64/74, Slot it Group C ,SCX F1 70’s/80’s…
  • I don t find NC1 as easy to find indeed
  • And of course NO MAGNET….for all
  1. SCX 1970’s F1 – 1970’s – No change.  Been a class since first meet in 2002
  2. Slot.it Group C 1980’s LM – No change.  Been class since 2006
  3. SCX 4WD – reintroduced as it was. Totally different, lots of cars and fun – if you listen to Michael and I on how to set them up. Was class from 2002 to 2008
  4. SCX 2WD rally cars (kinda 1970’s) – Ford Escort, Fiat 131, Fiat 124, Renault Alpine, Sunbeam Talbot, Renault 5 Maxi Turbo and plenty of livery’s.  Would be a great class, without magnets and simple to setup
  5. Ninco GT1 1990’s LM – No change. Been a class since first meet in 2002
  6. Cartrix 50’s F1 – great cars, nice handling and no weight needed. Mercedes W196, Ferrari 555 Supersqualo, Maserati 250F, BRM P-25, Lotus 16, Gordini T32, Bugatti T251 and Kurts-Offy (which I would include despite it not being an F1 car as it is of period) 
  7. Ninco 50’s LM roadsters – No Change. Been class since 2006
  8. 60/70’s LM – absolutely must remove the Slot.it Ferrari and Alfa Romeo and anything else that uses Slot.it components (NSR, Sloter) from the class or abandon it entirely.  Been a class since 2007 and was a magnet class in 2004.
  • Finally a comment on Scalextric. I will not be supporting ANY Scalextric class ever again after the farce that we have endured with Trans Am’s this year.  Please remember this is despite me having the coolest car created by myself and nearly every one of the available cars. What a total waste of my precious time!  Oh and it was the same when they had magnets and when we did Scalextric GT40’s and while on those all Scalextric should be banned from the 60/70’s LM class so people don’t waste their money on them.  All Scalextric chassis are a terrible terrible waste of all the beautiful design effort that has gone into the bodies.  The idea that we gave up SCX 4WD for this utter crap is beyond my understanding.    The only exception I could think of in the world of Scalextric would be the Lotus and Eagle from 1969 but they only have two body-styles although they handle really well at very low voltages (without a magnet of course).
  • Love Trans Am, maybe with the option of Ortmann or other tires.
  • My SCX F1 cars suck, so I run the loaners
  • The new 64-74 class is good but needs some handicapping to even out
  • Hate the GT1 class. My choice to dump
  • 50-60’s Le Mans is fine the way it is
  • Favorite class is Slot.it, mostly because of the way you pronounce it
  • Still can’t stand or understand the appeal of 4WD rally cars. Big NO
  • Still looking for a way to get modern F1, LMP or DP cars in
  • Keep classes as they are except Trans -Am. Replace with cartrix class
  • In summary, I would like to see maybe four classes max.  If I had my druthers the classes would be:
    1. Slot-it Group C (or the Ninco GT1 LeMans – these classes seem quite similar to me and they are my favorite classes)
    2. Open Wheel – (maybe the Scalextric Indy cars or modern F1)
    3. WRC 4-wheel drive class – (I swear nobody paid me to suggest this.  Also, I admit that I have never driven one of these cars, so I can’t be sure that I would like them.  But the idea of a 4×4 slot car intrigues me.)
    4. Fourth class, if there has to be one, could be anything as far as I’m concerned.  The Trans-Am cars seem to be popular, so that would be OK with me, even though they drive like a VW bus with three flat tires!
  • Get rid of Trans-Am: I would replace Trans-AM with NASCAR SPRINT CARS (single manufacturer TBD) or MODERN F1 with magnet (Scalextric Only). 
  • “Never, never, never, never give up.” Trans Am (Let Stephen prep your 4/WD and let Michael prep your Trans Am, if necessary) The appeal for me in all classes is the look of  the models and making them work
  • I am not interested in Cartrix Here are my favorite classes in order of preference:
  1. ’64-’74 Le Mans: Same as current unless as above or no changes except allow ballast for all Fly including Carrera 6 (This class has by far the most diverse and interesting models we race and the Slot.it 312PB is the personal favorite of many in the club)
  2. Ninco GT1 Le Mans: Same as current; No changes (These are the best out-of-the-box non-magnet fun to drive cars besides the SCX Ferrari F40)
  3. SCX WRC 4/WD: Same as 2008 No changes (so danged cool)
  4. Scalextric Trans-Am: Same as current except allow guide change to earlier version Scalextric or SCX with wires to the guide to eliminate spring contacts (see this post http://www.farroutslotcars.com/MemberTalk/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=304) I hope we don’t give up on these cars before we figure out how to make them fun to drive.
  5. SCX F1 1970/80’s: Same as current No changes (cheap, easy open-wheel fun)
  6. Ninco 1950/60’s Le Mans: Same as current No changes
  7. Slot.it Group C Le Mans: Same as current except allow ballast so that we can run higher voltage with more predictable handling.
  8. SCX Modern F1: Out-of-the-box sans magnet
  • I like all six of the classes we have now and see no reasons for change. I think our classes are very well thought out, and offer enough regulation to keep everyone in the game without a huge amount of testing. I also like the tight era confines which make them a better racing series than just specifying a motor or slot car maker.  Using Ninco tires on cars like the Fly’s is great too, and really makes them worth running, when they are sometimes garbage otherwise. I have also been impressed with the Scalextric tires. Much better than Fly, Carrera or SCX.
    • I am baffled by the talk of the Trans-Am class being broken. Most racers really enjoy it. I can understand Stan’s comments. They are sedans. I think it’s great to have one sedan class. They look great on the track and they do rub each other. Why race just GTs and sports cars? 
    • I’m not very interested in racing 50 year old cars. 1967 is plenty vintage for me. 
    • I like the Slot.it cars, because they look like modern race cars without being a spec class like most modern racing classes. 
    • I like the SCX F1 cars because they depict a great era of Formula 1 and they work much better than any  other newer-era cars we have tested. SCX seems to be committed to re-issuing some cars for the class with improvements added. Cool.
    • I do think the Ninco GT1s should have NC-5s in them because those are the motors that they have come with for at least nine years, and it frees up NC-1’s for the Ninco Classic class. The GT1’s also become more fun to drive with NC-5’s, not because they are faster, but because they are more responsive. I think it would be too bad if this doesn’t happen because Stephen and Michael mysteriously don’t have any of the NC-5’s they have removed from their cars. The rest of us all do.
  • When asked to list the classes in order of my preference it may go something like this: My choices are so close that tomorrow, the order may be different. I do not miss either of the classes replaced since I joined the club, SCX 2wd and SCX 4wd. The Slot.it 312PB is by far the most fun plastic slot car I have ever drive. May it rest in peace in my collection. Magnets are for refrigerators, cows, and young slot car racers

1. Slot.it Group C2. SCX F13. Scalextric Trans-Am4. 64-74 Le Mans (Fly only in 2010?)5. Ninco GT16. Ninco Classics

  • I’m not for putting Ortmann tires on everything either. What happened to out-of-the-box? We do not have a single out-of-the-box class. Ninco GT1’s with NC-5’s could be our first out-of-the-box class in some time. We seem to be trending towards making the cars easier to drive. Is that necessary? Some cars need help, but most really don’t.
  • I like  ….
    1. 60/70’S Le Mans. 
    2. Group C Slot-it
    3. 50’S Ninco Roadster
    4. Trans-Am…(but not too fond of it)
    5. Ninco GT-1
    6. Modern DTM
    7. Modern F-1
    8. Modern Le Mans …All Classes 
    9. SCX (not very realistic) F-1’S
    • NASCAR
  • I’m pretty happy with the cars we are currently running. It’s a nice mix of old and new, American and Non, with one Formula 1 thrown in there.    Again, if we could accommodate another class without losing the Team races or Driving Championships, I would be for it. But I am not really a fan of the 4 wheel drive cars, from my experience. I did like what I saw of the Cartrix cars, but I don’t know their cost or pitfalls
  • You can dump Trans-Am as far as I care
  • My top eight choices for classes this year.1. Slot-it Group C  LeMans 2. Ninco 50-60’s LeMans3. Ninco Gt1 LeMans4. SCX 70 & 80’s F1’s5.. All Ninco Championship cars as ran in the championship race.6. SCX 4WD7. Scalextric TransAm class8. Either an all Resin & Slot-it 60-70’s LeMans class or every other manufacturer except Slot-it and resin cars 60-70’s Le Mans class
  • I enjoy all of the classes that we race.  A good mix of fast and slow, a good mix of new(er) and old
  • I like the Trans Am class, sedan rubbin’/racin’ is fun.
  • I’ve seen a few comments about the Fly Le Mans class.  I would love to race a Fly car, but the Slot It Ferrari is so much faster (thx again Terry) that I don’t use a Fly. I don’t want to eliminate the Slot It as an option, but maybe, as some have said, had some Fly only races in that particular class.  That would be good change.  Keep the weight too
  • As for the Ninco GT-1 class, I would support some research and testing on a swap to NC-5 motors.  We use the NC-1s or NC-8s elsewhere and they work great in the 50-60s cars.  Now if only I could find my Fina McLaren GT-1 car……f#*k!!!
  • Maybe the answer to making the Trans-Am class more appealling to a larger group of members is to allow the under 2-liter cars in this year. We could allow any Fly sedan that was under 2-liter and produced prior to 1970. That could include the BMW 2002, Alfa GTV, Datsun 510 and all of those Simca/NSU/Fiat/Abarth things. Cortinas, MGB-GTs, Austin Americas and Mini Coopers ran too. They were all basically legal in the actual under 2-Liter class. Bugs and VW 1600’s two. Monogram also makes a Falcon that we could allow in.  And there is the new Carrera Cuda.  Just no sports cars, as these were not allow in the pre 1971 Trans-Am series. It was a sedan series.  Now if I could just find a Mazda RX-2.  How about a test.. Run a couple of the under 2 ltr cars and see how well the run. Even if they are slower, who cares. It’s up to the driver/owner to sort it out.
  1. SCX F1 1970/80’s: As close to heaven as you will get on a slot car track.  Number one class!
  2. Ninco 1950/60’s Le Mans: Personally one of my faves. And for that reason alone the club do the right thing and keep it!
  3. Ninco GT1 Le Mans: Probably the best handling of all the classes we race – and not just my opinion, but the Mclaren is ofted cited on websites (along with the scx ferrari F40 – another class we have dropped) as being amongst the best cars of all time to drive and race!  Another must keep class!
  4. Slot.it Group C Le Mans: So different to the other classes in their handling but a great class to race for so many reasons.
  5. SCX 4WD
  6. ’64-’74 Le Mans: Scrap this lot right away!  Actually no…  Keep it for: race any chassis on any car
  7. Scalextric Trans AM: Waste of time.  Only two types of car and one is completely uncompetitive, (Michael aside) plus the fact they drive like crap – bring back the 4WD!
  • Drivers Championship: A great success as well I feel.  They are certainly the first fixtures I looked for on the calender. 
  • Once again.. Stay with what has been successful for us.  Stick with six classes.  Get rid of Trans-am and bring back 4WD.  If anything else has to be swopped out…  The fly, sorry slot.it, sorry any body on any chassis class, can go the way of all bad things as far as I am concerned!
  • Get rid of trans-am!

G. Loaner Cars: 

  • I feel loaner cars should be purchased by the club and managed by selected car preparers.  We all contribute something at start off year and go from there. I am concerned that people seemingly feel unmotivated to prepare their own cars.
  • Loaner cars are essential for club growth. I think we should all contribute a sum at the beginning of the year, say $10 each, to help with prep and maintenance expense. I believe that nearly everyone in the club runs a loaner in at least one class in at least one race, for whatever reason. We should all, therefore, help to defray the costs for those who provide them
  • Okee Dokee: keep providing them, don’t stop it or we would loose racers.  Should all classes be loaner “club” cars only?  No.  I think some enjoy preparing their own cars.  Should the Top 4 in the rankings only race loaner cars?  No.
  • I am not sure about the top 4 using loaner’s cars since it doesn t encourage to prepare your own car
  • How else would I race?
  • Thanks to Michael, Gary and other who have provided loaners as well as help in preparing the cars. Seems like the backbone of the club model.  Do you want to continue providing loaners cars, should we stop it, is it worth it?  I’d like to see it continue.  Should all classes be loaner “club” cars only?  No.  I think some enjoy preparing their own cars.  Should the Top 4 in the rankings only race loaner cars?  No.
  • Either the one who lends takes some cash out of the kitty, or those who use the loaners pay to use them. Either way, I’m all for compensation
  • I like your yearly fee idea but I think it should be $10.00 lower.  Or only for those people who constantly use loaners
  • Loaner cars are a great asset to the club, because they let new drivers jump right in. When the loaners are better than almost everyone’s car they are probably too good. If you want to see diversity on the track don’t encourage me to race loaners by making them faster than my cars.  That said, thank you to Michael and Stephen for providing really great loaner cars all year long.  If there is a need to collect money for loaners it should come from the drivers that regularly use them. Possibly, any driver who has raced one full year with the club should have to pay on race day to use the loaner cars. $5 for both classes seems fair. Possibly any driver who has only raced loaner cars for the past three years should pay $100 right now.
  • Loaner cars are fine for attracting new drivers but a little silly for those who have been using them for years. I think a minimum $5 fee, payable to the loaner provider is appropriate given the preparation time and damage inflicted
  • From Michael S: I was more interested to know if the use of loaners in lieu of members’ own cars is indicative of issues that should be addressed such as the amount of work or difficulty associated with preparation of one’s own cars. One of my concerns is that by providing the best loaners that we can, we might be discouraging some from making the effort to prepare and enjoy that aspect of our hobby. On the occasions that I provide loaners, it is my intention to offer a fair opportunity for everyone and provide a standard of performance based on minimal preparation of about one hour per car. As always, I offer my experience, tools, and time to work with anyone wishing my assistance (sorry to recently disappoint Russell and I’ll make good as soon as 2010 classes are decided 😉  Personally, I am not in favor of charging for loaner cars provided that everyone continue to use care with them, as they generally do. Overall, I find it very rewarding to provide well running loaners and I know that Rene’ felt the same way (Stephen did as well, but he’s barely time to play these days). I also use loaners to test rules considerations in the team and driver’s championship races, and to evaluate relative parity of different cars in the same class. Of course, it’s the best reward of all when the great guys in the club enjoy and have a good time with them.
  • Michael S: I am concerned that changes to the loaner car system will restrict the variety of cars available as loaners and demotivate me from enjoying the effort (but I do think we should motivate more to enjoy their own cars)
  • I used loaner cars for these two races because I don’t have a Trans-Am car (yet), and my Ninco GT1 was “in the shop”. Normally, I would run my McLaren, which has been successful in the past, but upon picking it up just before the race, I noticed that it was “sans motor”…hardly useful in those circumstances.  Michael, it’s wonderful that you and others continue to provide such carefully prepared loaners, but I think it’s absolutely essential that we compensate you for the wear and tear, and especially for the time and investment that you (and others) put in to ensure that the loaners are the best they can be. I do think that it’s a bit of a problem that the loaners are so good, as it discourages folks from actually getting more into the hobby. Plus, no matter how carefully we drive, there’s always going to be that one time when something terrible happens, and the car is hosed. You deserve the chance to recoup the cost in that event. If somebody’s going to have to “pay to play” with great regularity, it shouldn’t take too long before they realize that they could’ve purchased their own car with what they’ve spent subsidizing the loaners. And since I was lazy and didn’t take the time to prep my McLaren, I should have had to pay for that instead of being able to race a car that’s in top-notch tune
  • First, I’d like to say I have been very impressed with the club and I would like to thank everyone for making me feel welcome.  I have been driving the loaner cars, and frankly I found it surprising from the get-go that so many racers were using loaners, even those not new to the club.  The guys who have been supplying the loaner cars are to be applauded and thanked for providing so many very decent cars for racing.  Still, though I have found the loaner cars to be, generally, surprisingly good, lets face it; nobody ever won a race driving a loaner [Dictator’s Note: In fact several races have been won using loaners, you just have to be Rene, Chris Raidisch or similar level drivers :)].  It seems like anyone who wants to truly have a chance to compete for a win would want to eventually buy and tune their own cars. As a newbie, the thought of going out and buying six new cars (or is it going to be eight?) and spare parts for said six cars seems to be a bit much.  It seems like reducing the number of classes would make it easier for people to campaign their own cars, and it would ease the burden on those supplying loaners. I will probably buy my own car to compete in one or two classes once the classes are defined for the upcoming year.  If the number of classes were reduced to 3 or 4 I might even stretch to have a car for each class.  But if it stays at 6 or grows to 8 then my plan is to buy 2 cars and use loaners for the rest of the classes. I have been racing Fray-Jet cars for the last 3 years or so, and this was my first ‘organized’ slot car experience.  Unfortunately, due to some members moving away and several others being unemployed for an extended period, the Fray-jet scene on So Cal seems to be going into hibernation.  After spending the time and money for all the cars, tools, parts, etc. for that class of racing I am hesitant to go whole hog into something new right away
  • Most importantly, I think those who loan cars should be compensated. It should be done by either taking $20. – $40. out of the kitty each race (or whatever people agree is a good amount), OR by having anyone who uses a loaner kick in maybe $5. for the use of  the car. The loaner cars are certainly prepped well, and I think it’s great that we have them. Now let’s pony up.
  • What I don’t like is the switching of cars from personal cars to loaners just to get an advantage in the race. E.g., “Dang, did you see that loaner car on yellow??? I’m gonna use that instead of my car on that lane!” One should only be allowed to swap cars if a serious break occurs. And not from one’s own hands. E.g., “Oops, I didn’t mean to step on my car. NOW can I use the car on yellow?” [Dictator’s Note: technically this is not supposed to happen but having not been at all races this year I cannot be sure what did or did not happen.]
  • Keep the loaner cars as they are. They are set up better than most people ever can do it and it sounds like Michael enjoys doing it.( I think he secretly gets pleasure knowing his cars are the best
  • I want to thank those who have provided loaners this year. Without your generosity this club would be a lot smaller.
  • As a club, we have never turned anyone away because they didn’t have a personal car to run in all of our classes and I would hate to start now. Would I like to see some of our more seasoned members have their own cars and not have to use loaners at every race? Yes, but the loaners have been a nice crutch for me this year when I didn’t have the time to properly prepare my own cars. So I really shouldn’t have an opinion on them.
  • I wish my cars were as good as the loaners.  I wouldn’t be here if not for the loaner car system.  The cars are great and many thanks for them to Michael and even SFJ.  If more $$$ is needed, then maybe a per race charge on loaner cars would be warranted.  
  • I will say that I think the guys who supply the loaner cars and track owners should be covered expense wise – even if it means a little more $$. All our cars are digital (scalectrix) and we will be depending on the loaners for a little while longer until we figure out exactly the classes we want to run
  • They are so needed within the club -for the so many reasons already stated my members – it would be unthinkable not to have them!   As for not preparing your own cars….  I could prepare a car all day – fact is…  Try as I might (and I have all the gear) I am useless at it.  I have rarely, if ever, managed to get a car up to the standard that Mike gets the loaner to.  So that’s why I use them!  If you think I am going to spend 3hrs every two weeks prepping a car, only to finish last every time, you gotta be mad!   Regarding paying for them…  It would seem that the clubs biggest supplier (Michael) for various reasons, doesn’t want payment!!!   I am not sure how the other suppliers feel? Obviously there a costs involved especially when a car gets damaged!I dont really know what the solution is, but money is obviously involved!

I. Weight: 

  • Since Michael has cracked the weight code for us all I am fine to have weight in various classes BUT I honestly feel if the class needs weight then it should not be a class we race
  • Weight works and once you do there is not much prep.  Allow it in all classes
  • Let weight be free for all classes
  • Seems like it worked fine to add weight to a class last year
  • I’d like to see weight allowed in ALL classes, but that’s just me
  • Weight is needed
  • Minimum and maximum weight only to apply to drivers
  • be allowed to use weight for any car setup
  • Adding weight to the Slot.its might be interesting. I think the two classes we have with weight now are fine, and the rest don’t need it, including the Slot.its. 
  • Sorry, but I don’t have enough knowledge to comment on the weight issue. I might like to see a couple of races per year with magnets, just to mix it up, and for the sheer thrill of going really fast.
  • Unfortunately. I have gained a few pounds this year. Oh, you meant for the cars. Well what we are doing now is fine
  • Weight on the Ninco 50-60s works well, as does the Fly Le Mans class.  See comment above on it.
  • As a General rule…  As few “weight allowed” classes as possible.

J. Cost: 

  • Keep $10, everyone contribute towards club owned loaners ($60 by 25 people is $1,500 or roughly 5 cars @ $50 for 6 classes – and 3.75 cars for 8 classes :-0 )
  • Ok for me. The hosts should decide this it is their stuff we are using
  • The fee is OK
  • Seems fine
  • $10 per race session seems to be enough
  • OK
  • $10 is fine, but considering the cost of gas it’s actually higher
  • $10.00 is fine
  • Ten dollars seems fine. When I have hosted, even with my smaller turn-outs, it has always given me enough money to buy beer, good food and other beverages, and still pocket a little bit for my effort. Thanks guys
  • $10. seems fine. How does it sit with those hosting?
  • I am fine with what we are paying into the kitty
  • As long as the hosts who sponsor the races are at least whole on their costs for the races, then the $10 is right.  Where else can you have (at least) 4 hours of fun for $10??? 
  • I think a fair amount generally. If we ever need to ‘recruit’ new members, maybe a “free first visit” would be a good idea!

K .Website: 

  • it is great and thanks to Craig for all the work.  We need to get him a shapely assistant so we can get all the changes I have submitted done 🙂
  • OK
  • I only use the website to show off my writing to students for English class; I’ll try to explore it later
  • Great website.  Seems like the forum could use a bit more activity, but we’re all busy
  • I go to the website every day; I find the info that Michael posts (as well as others) is very useful. Anybody who isn’t making use of the information there is foolish
  • Update a little (I bought two cars for nothing (no big deal))…Otherwise, great
  • Used it once to see if it was there. Spend enough time in front of a computer
  • I don’t mind posting the results and keeping up the calendar. I may participate less next year, but I can keep posting the results if they are sent to me.  The website is part of what makes our club world class. Have you examined that map at the bottom? We have people checking in from all over the world.  Unfortunately the map was just archived on Oct 28 (they archive it once a year), but look here to see maps from the past two years: 
  • http://www3.clustrmaps.com/counter/maps_history.php?url=http://www.farroutslotcars.com/&category=free 
  • In just 12 days we have had 48 views from the UK, 44 from France, 21 from Germany and Australia, 19 from the Netherlands, 18 from Spain…   Five from Serbia! We are slot car gods, or idols or nuts; something like that. 
  • http://www3.clustrmaps.com/counter/maps.php?url=http://www.farroutslotcars.com/#totals  
  • If you don’t know, or have forgotten, where our website is, here is the address:  http://www.farroutslotcars.com/
  • Website is useful. We should try to get some advertising
  • I like it, and really appreciate the effort that Thomas puts into logging laps at the races, and Craig’s work in getting things formatted and available for all to see online. 
  • I want to thank Craig for setting up a marvelous site and keeping it as current as possible It’s great.  
  • I don’t go there to see the message board enough, but I do check out the stats and rankings on a regular basis. As Craig said, it’s great to see hits from across the globe.  That says a lot about this club.
  • I use it all the time!  I love it! Craig has done a first class job!


  • Lastly, I just want to say that this is one of the greatest collections of people I’ve ever had the pleasure to be associated with. The outpouring of generosity to help with the renovation of my track is just incredible. I can’t thank all who contributed enough; you guys are THE BEST
  • That was great.. This club is a bright spot in my life as well. The guys make that happen
  • Thank you Steven for all the fun that your initiative provides, really thank you….
  • Attention to marshalling and marshalling technique needs to improve.  It can be a real drag when someone “costs” you during a race. Bob Beck  suffered in two different heats from this yesterday. No need to single anyone out. It’s just across the board. I always try to apologize when I get clumsy ’cause I know the feeling.  Cracking the whip is no problem but a friendly reminder at the start of a race day to “look smart !” wouldn’t hurt as well.
  • I know I haven’t had time to race in the last year with you guys—but I PLAN on making some time to do so in the future. I think your club is evidence that you’re doing things right!!! IT’s the longest running successful slot club I know of in the 1/32 category. AND– you have some of the nicest people involved with great variation of tracks to run  on. I think that really adds to the fun!! Keep up the good work—I’ll get back to have some fun this winter!!!
  • It’s always great racing with all of you, and just seeing you at the track too.
  • Thank you, everyone for the hospitable atmosphere I found when I attended the meeting in Palos Verdes.  Before arriving, I felt intimidated stepping into a den of Pros, knowing that it had been roughly thirty years since I had raced a slotcar, and back then it was an ho G+.  I frequently swapped bodies with chassis and never raced without a magnet.  I was greatly looking forward to watching you race and learn from what I saw, but you all collectively enforced that I jump right in behind the driver’s seat.  Everyone was gracious and kind, even when I was marshaling.  Prior to showing up, over time, I’ve purchased both a Carrera and a SCX Digital set.  I now own 1 Monogram car, 6 Carreras and 4 SCX digitals.  Having the opportunity to use the loaner cars was the only option in my case.  I took the time to observe and learn from the group how to prep at starting position and tried to learn how to race the track, on the rare occasions I could keep up with one or two of you.  I am not prepared to have an opinion as to what classes to race, but I am certain, that for now, I would be using a loaner car.
  • I feel very fortunate to have found this club. It’s an odd mix or personalities, to be sure, but all in all we do seem to succeed in meeting the major goal of the club: To have fun!  I’m having a blast. Thanks much
  • By the way….  What is the name of our club?  The ‘On the hill gang’ or the ‘Farrout Racing Club’? [Dictator’s Note: It is The Farrout Slot Racing Club, because I said so 🙂 ]

Posted by: Stephen Farr-Jones

November 27, 2009

Despite being run by a benevolent dictator, every year the members of the club are surveyed about what they do and don’t like and are asked to vote for the race classes for the coming year.  We then have an annual meeting where any questions about the classes and any back-to-back testing can take place to make the final decisions.

We find that it usually brings forward new ideas and allows us to discuss any problems.  Below are the surveys and answers from past years.

Annual Surveys – Index

  • Page created: 12/21/2023 – PK

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